This study surveyed the characteristics of the indicator for the synchrony of brain activities, regional homogeneity (ReHo), in patients who were diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) without co-morbidities. Forty-four patients with MDD and twenty-seven normal controls were enrolled in our study. The ReHo outputs of patients and controls were compared by a nonparametric permutation-based method with global brain volume, age, and gender as covariates. In addition, the correlations between the clinical variables (such as depression severity, anxiety severity, illness duration) and ReHo values were also estimated in each group and across both groups. The patients with MDD had lower ReHo values than the controls for the cognitive division of right anterior cingulate cortex and the left inferior parietal lobule. In contrast, the patients had higher values of ReHo than controls for the right inferior temporal lobe and the right cerebellum. Additionally, the ReHo values were negatively correlated with the depression severity and with illness duration in the right anterior cingulate cortex. MDD patients had significant alterations in the ReHo of the parieto-cingulate and temporo-cerebellum regions with opposite trends.
Keywords: Anterior cingulate; Cerebellum; Depression; Parietal lobule; Regional homogeneity; Temporal lobe.