Correlations between Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) and Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (1H MRS) in schizophrenic patients and normal controls

Tang, Cheuk Y.; Friedman, Joseph; Shungu, Dikoma; Chang, Linda; Ernst, Thomas; Stewart, Daniel; Hajianpour, Arash; Carpenter, David; Ng, Johnny; Xiangling Mao; Hof, Patrick R.; Buchsbaum, Monte S.; Davis, Kenneth; Gorman, Jack M.
January 2007
BMC Psychiatry;2007, Vol. 7, p1
Academic Journal
Background: Evidence suggests that white matter integrity may play an underlying pathophysiological role in schizophrenia. N-acetylaspartate (NAA), as measured by Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS), is a neuronal marker and is decreased in white matter lesions and regions of axonal loss. It has also been found to be reduced in the prefrontal and temporal regions in patients with schizophrenia. Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) allows one to measure the orientations of axonal tracts as well as the coherence of axonal bundles. DTI is thus sensitive to demyelination and other structural abnormalities. DTI has also shown abnormalities in these regions. Methods: MRS and DTI were obtained on 42 healthy subjects and 40 subjects with schizophrenia. The data was analyzed using regions of interests in the Dorso-Lateral Prefrontal white matter, Medial Temporal white matter and Occipital white matter using both imaging modalities. Results: NAA was significantly reduced in the patient population in the Medial Temporal regions. DTI anisotropy indices were also reduced in the same Medial Temporal regions. NAA and DTI-anisotropy indices were also correlated in the left medial temporal region. Conclusion: Our results implicate defects in the medial temporal white matter in patients with schizophrenia. Moreover, MRS and DTI are complementary modalities for the study of white matter disruptions in patients with schizophrenia.


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