Fiber tractography reveals disruption of temporal lobe white matter tracts in schizophrenia.

TitleFiber tractography reveals disruption of temporal lobe white matter tracts in schizophrenia.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsPhillips, OR, Nuechterlein KH, Clark KA, Hamilton LS, Asarnow RF, Hageman NS, Toga AW, Narr KL
JournalSchizophrenia research
Volume107
Issue1
Pagination30-8
Date Published2009 Jan
ISSN0920-9964
KeywordsAdult, Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, Female, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Nerve Fibers, Nerve Net, Neural Pathways, Schizophrenia, Temporal Lobe
Abstract

Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) studies have demonstrated abnormal anisotropic diffusion in schizophrenia. However, examining data with low spatial resolution and/or a low number of gradient directions and limitations associated with analysis approaches sensitive to registration confounds may have contributed to mixed findings concerning the regional specificity and direction of results. This study examined three major white matter tracts connecting lateral and medial temporal lobe regions with neocortical association regions widely implicated in systems-level functional and structural disturbances in schizophrenia. Using DTIstudio, a previously validated regions of interest tractography method was applied to 30 direction diffusion weighted imaging data collected from demographically similar schizophrenia (n=23) and healthy control subjects (n=22). The diffusion tensor was computed at each voxel after intra-subject registration of diffusion-weighted images. Three-dimensional tract reconstruction was performed using the Fiber Assignment by Continuous Tracking (FACT) algorithm. Tractography results showed reduced fractional anisotropy (FA) of the arcuate fasciculi (AF) and inferior longitudinal fasciculi (ILF) in patients compared to controls. FA changes within the right ILF were negatively correlated with measures of thinking disorder. Reduced volume of the left AF was also observed in patients. These results, which avoid registration issues associated with voxel-based analyses of DTI data, support that fiber pathways connecting lateral and medial temporal lobe regions with neocortical regions are compromised in schizophrenia. Disruptions of connectivity within these pathways may potentially contribute to the disturbances of memory, language, and social cognitive processing that characterize the disorder.

DOI10.1111/j.1469-8986.2012.01383.x
Alternate JournalSchizophr. Res.