Disruption of gray matter morphological networks in patients with paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia

Hum Brain Mapp. 2021 Feb 1;42(2):398-411. doi: 10.1002/hbm.25230. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

Abstract

This study explores the topological properties of brain gray matter (GM) networks in patients with paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia (PKD) and asks whether GM network features have potential diagnostic value. We used 3D T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging and graph theoretical approaches to investigate the topological organization of GM morphological networks in 87 PKD patients and 115 age- and sex-matched healthy controls. We applied a support vector machine to GM morphological network matrices to classify PKD patients versus healthy controls. Compared with the HC group, the GM morphological networks of PKD patients showed significant abnormalities at the global level, including an increase in characteristic path length (Lp) and decreases in local efficiency (Eloc ), clustering coefficient (Cp), normalized clustering coefficient (γ), and small-worldness (σ). The decrease in Cp was significantly correlated with disease duration and age of onset. The GM morphological networks of PKD patients also showed significant changes in nodal topological characteristics, mainly in the basal ganglia-thalamus circuitry, default-mode network and central executive network. Finally, we used the GM morphological network matrices to classify individuals as PKD patients versus healthy controls, achieving 87.8% accuracy. Overall, this study demonstrated disruption of GM morphological networks in PKD, which might extend our understanding of the pathophysiology of PKD; further, GM morphological network matrices might have the potential to serve as network neuroimaging biomarkers for the diagnosis of PKD.

Keywords: gray matter networks; machine learning; paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia; structural MRI; topological organization.