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. 2012 Jun 20;23(9):566-71.
doi: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e3283546264.

Mapping Inter-Regional Connectivity of the Entire Cortex to Characterize Major Depressive Disorder: A Whole-Brain Diffusion Tensor Imaging Tractography Study

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Mapping Inter-Regional Connectivity of the Entire Cortex to Characterize Major Depressive Disorder: A Whole-Brain Diffusion Tensor Imaging Tractography Study

Mayuresh S Korgaonkar et al. Neuroreport. .

Abstract

Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) can be used to study the organization of brain white matter noninvasively. The aim of this study was to present a proof of concept for integrating DTI with high-resolution anatomical (T1) images to map and assess inter-regional connectivity across the entire cortex in a cohort of healthy participants and compared with patients with major depressive disorder. We used MRI data of 23 patients and 23 matched controls, assessed as part of baseline testing in the International Study to Predict Optimized Treatment in Depression (iSPOT-D). Freesurfer was used to analyze the T1 images to automatically label 35 gyral-based areas for each hemisphere. DTI tractography was performed to parcellate intercortical tracts using each of these areas in seed-target combinations. We quantified fractional anisotropy, number-of-fiber connections, and fiber path length for each DTI connection, with the goal of identifying the best measure or combination of measures to characterize major depression. The best classification accuracy for the individual measures was achieved using the number-of-fibers data, whereas the combination model provided a slight improvement. The most discriminant features between the two groups were for white matter associated with the limbic, frontal, and thalamic projection fibers and as part of cortical connections between the left inferior temporal and the postcentral cortex; the left parstriangularis and the left superior frontal; the left cuneus and the corpus callosum; the left lingual and the right lateral occipital, the right superior parietal and the right superior temporal cortices; and the right inferior parietal and the right insula and postcentral cortices.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00693849.

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