Altered spontaneous neural activity in experimental odontogenic pain: a resting-state functional MRI study

Am J Transl Res. 2022 Nov 15;14(11):8398-8406. eCollection 2022.


Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the intrinsic cerebral activity alternations in experimental odontogenic pain with resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).

Materials and methods: Forty-nine participants in an odontogenic pain group and 49 participants in control group underwent imaging using fMRI in this prospective study. Odontogenic pain was induced by experimental tooth movement. We calculated the fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (fALFF) value to evaluate regional cerebral function and compared it between the two groups utilizing a voxel-based two-sample t-test.

Results: In comparison with the healthy controls, the participants in odontogenic pain group showed increased fALFF value in the left cerebellum, right posterior cingulate gyrus, and bilateral inferior temporal gyrus, as well as decreased fALFF in the medial prefrontal cortex, the left anterior cingulate cortex, bilateral angular gyrus, left inferior parietal cortex, middle temporal gyrus, and miscellaneous cerebral regions (P < 0.001 familywise error-corrected VOXEL > 100).

Conclusion: The present study showed abnormal cerebral activity in odontogenic pain, and reveled that the aberrant regional functional activities were mainly located within the default mode network. The finding could provide insight into the underlying neural mechanism of odontogenic pain. Registry of clinical trials (Trial number ChiCTR1800018589) -

Keywords: Magnetic resonance imaging; brain; cortex; low-frequency fluctuations; odontogenic pain.