Aberrant levels of cortical myelin distinguish individuals with depressive disorders from healthy controls

Neuroimage Clin. 2021;32:102790. doi: 10.1016/j.nicl.2021.102790. Epub 2021 Aug 23.

Abstract

The association between depressive disorders and measures reflecting myelin content is underexplored, despite growing evidence of associations with white matter tract integrity. We characterized the T1w/T2w ratio using the Glasser atlas in 39 UD and 47 HC participants (ages = 19-44, 75% female). A logistic elastic net regularized regression with nested cross-validation and a subsequent linear discriminant analysis conducted on held-out samples were used to select brain regions and classify patients vs. healthy controls (HC). True-label model performance was compared against permuted-label model performance. The T1w/T2w ratio distinguished patients from HC with 68% accuracy (p < 0.001; sensitivity = 63.8%, specificity = 71.5%). Brain regions contributing to this classification performance were located in the orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulate, extended visual, and auditory cortices, and showed statistically significant differences in the T1w/T2w ratio for patients vs. HC. As the T1w/T2w ratio is thought to characterize cortical myelin, patterns of cortical myelin in these regions may be a biomarker distinguishing individuals with depressive disorders from HC.

Keywords: Cortical myelin; Depression; Elastic net; LDA; MRI; Machine learning; T1w/T2w ratio.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain
  • Depressive Disorder*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Myelin Sheath
  • White Matter* / diagnostic imaging
  • Young Adult