Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders

A special issue of Biomedicines (ISSN 2227-9059). This special issue belongs to the section "Neurobiology and Clinical Neuroscience".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2024) | Viewed by 6670

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Psychiatry, National Clinical Research Center for Mental Disorders, and National Center for Mental Disorders, The Second Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha 410011, China
Interests: neuroimaging; schizophrenia; major depressive disorder; anxiety disorders; obsessive-compulsive disorder; somatization disorder

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Cognitive deficits exist in psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, and bipolar disorder; however, the brain structural and functional dysconnectivity underlying cognitive deficits remain unclear.

The goal of this Special Issue is to focus on the roles of brain connectivity and the neuropathological mechanisms underlying cognitive deficits as well as clinical symptoms in psychiatric disorders. We aim to collect articles that report on high-quality research, from basic benchwork to neuroimaging and clinical trials. We will also address important conceptual and methodological questions.

We welcome original research and reviews related to this topic. The articles are encouraged to cover the following research areas (but are not limited to them):

  • Structure and function of brain connectivity in psychiatric disorders.
  • Cognitive deficits and clinical symptoms associated with brain connectivity in psychiatric disorders.
  • Genetic and molecular bases of brain connectivity in schizophrenia, especially those relevant to cognitive functioning in psychiatric disorders.
  • Effects of pharmacological treatment on cognition and brain connectivity in psychiatric disorders.
  •  Furthermore, we welcome related reviews of existing publications and perspectives.

Prof. Dr. Wenbin Guo
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • cognitive deficits
  • psychiatric disorders
  • schizophrenia
  • brain imaging

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

11 pages, 1270 KiB  
Article
Functional Connectivity of Language-Related Cerebellar Regions Is Reduced in Schizophrenia Patients
by Marco Marino, Margherita Biondi, Dante Mantini and Chiara Spironelli
Biomedicines 2024, 12(3), 480; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines12030480 - 21 Feb 2024
Viewed by 1019
Abstract
Schizophrenia (SZ) is a widespread psychiatric disorder that is traditionally characterized by positive and negative symptoms. However, recent focus has shifted to cognitive deficits as a crucial aspect. The cerebellum, conventionally tied to motor coordination, is now recognized as pivotal in the pathophysiology [...] Read more.
Schizophrenia (SZ) is a widespread psychiatric disorder that is traditionally characterized by positive and negative symptoms. However, recent focus has shifted to cognitive deficits as a crucial aspect. The cerebellum, conventionally tied to motor coordination, is now recognized as pivotal in the pathophysiology of SZ cognitive impairments. Proposed disruptions in the cortico-cerebellar-thalamic-cortico circuit contribute to these deficits. Despite evidence of cerebellar abnormalities, within-cerebellum functional connectivity is often overlooked. This study explores spontaneous functional interactions within the cerebellum and their link to cognitive deficits in SZ. Using a multi-domain task battery (MDTB) parcellation, fMRI data from SZ patients and healthy controls were analyzed. Significant differences in cerebellar connectivity emerged, particularly in regions related to attention, language, and memory processing. Correlations between connectivity values and SZ symptomatology were identified. A post hoc analysis, considering the patients’ hallucination vulnerability, revealed distinct connectivity patterns. Non-hallucinating and low-hallucinating SZ patients exhibited higher cerebellar connectivity than high-hallucinating patients, especially in language and motor control regions. These findings suggest a gradient of cerebellar connectivity alterations corresponding to hallucination vulnerability in SZ patients. This study offers novel insights into cerebellar impairments in SZ, highlighting the role of within-cerebellum connectivity in cognitive deficits. The observed connectivity patterns in language-related regions contribute to understanding language development and auditory verbal hallucinations in SZ. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders)
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15 pages, 1866 KiB  
Article
Genes Associated with Altered Brain Structure and Function in Obstructive Sleep Apnea
by Yijie Huang, Chong Shen, Wei Zhao, Youlan Shang, Yisong Wang, Hui-Ting Zhang, Ruoyun Ouyang and Jun Liu
Biomedicines 2024, 12(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines12010015 - 20 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1176
Abstract
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been widely reported to cause abnormalities in brain structure and function, but the genetic mechanisms behind these changes remain largely unexplored. Our research aims to investigate the relationship between sleep characteristics, cognitive impairments, genetic factors, and brain structure [...] Read more.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been widely reported to cause abnormalities in brain structure and function, but the genetic mechanisms behind these changes remain largely unexplored. Our research aims to investigate the relationship between sleep characteristics, cognitive impairments, genetic factors, and brain structure and function in OSA. Using structural and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data, we compared cortical morphology and spontaneous brain activity between 28 patients with moderate-to-severe OSA and 34 healthy controls (HCs) utilizing voxel-based morphology (VBM) and the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) analyses. In conjunction with the Allen Human Brain Atlas, we used transcriptome-neuroimaging spatial correlation analyses to investigate gene expression patterns associated with changes in gray matter volume (GMV) and ALFF in OSA. Compared to the HCs, the OSA group exhibited increased ALFF values in the left hippocampus (t = 5.294), amygdala (t = 4.176), caudate (t = 4.659), cerebellum (t = 5.896), and decreased ALFF values in the left precuneus (t = −4.776). VBM analysis revealed increased GMV in the right inferior parietal lobe (t = 5.158) in OSA. Additionally, functional enrichment analysis revealed that genes associated with both ALFF and GMV cross-sampling were enriched in gated channel activity and synaptic transmission, glutamatergic synapse, and neuron. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders)
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20 pages, 2337 KiB  
Article
Breaking the Fear Barrier: Aberrant Activity of Fear Networks as a Prognostic Biomarker in Patients with Panic Disorder Normalized by Pharmacotherapy
by Haohao Yan, Yiding Han, Xiaoxiao Shan, Huabing Li, Feng Liu, Ping Li, Jingping Zhao and Wenbin Guo
Biomedicines 2023, 11(9), 2420; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines11092420 - 29 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1121
Abstract
Panic disorder (PD) is a prevalent type of anxiety disorder. Previous studies have reported abnormal brain activity in the fear network of patients with PD. Nonetheless, it remains uncertain whether pharmacotherapy can effectively normalize these abnormalities. This longitudinal resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging [...] Read more.
Panic disorder (PD) is a prevalent type of anxiety disorder. Previous studies have reported abnormal brain activity in the fear network of patients with PD. Nonetheless, it remains uncertain whether pharmacotherapy can effectively normalize these abnormalities. This longitudinal resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging study aimed to investigate the spontaneous neural activity in patients with PD and its changes after pharmacotherapy, with a focus on determining whether it could predict treatment response. The study included 54 drug-naive patients with PD and 54 healthy controls (HCs). Spontaneous neural activity was measured using regional homogeneity (ReHo). Additionally, support vector regression (SVR) was employed to predict treatment response from ReHo. At baseline, PD patients had aberrant ReHo in the fear network compared to HCs. After 4 weeks of paroxetine treatment (20 mg/day), a significant increase in ReHo was observed in the left fusiform gyrus, which had shown reduced ReHo before treatment. The SVR analysis showed significantly positive correlations (p < 0.0001) between the predicted and actual reduction rates of the severity of anxiety and depressive symptoms. Here, we show patients with PD had abnormal spontaneous neural activities in the fear networks. Furthermore, these abnormal spontaneous neural activities can be partially normalized by pharmacotherapy and serve as candidate predictors of treatment response. Gaining insight into the trajectories of brain activity normalization following treatment holds the potential to provide vital insights for managing PD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders)
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17 pages, 1938 KiB  
Article
Sleep Traits Causally Affect the Brain Cortical Structure: A Mendelian Randomization Study
by Yanjing Chen, Shiyi Lyu, Wang Xiao, Sijie Yi, Ping Liu and Jun Liu
Biomedicines 2023, 11(8), 2296; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines11082296 - 18 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1467
Abstract
Background: Brain imaging results in sleep deprived patients showed structural changes in the cerebral cortex; however, the reasons for this phenomenon need to be further explored. Methods: This MR study evaluated causal associations between morningness, ease of getting up, insomnia, long [...] Read more.
Background: Brain imaging results in sleep deprived patients showed structural changes in the cerebral cortex; however, the reasons for this phenomenon need to be further explored. Methods: This MR study evaluated causal associations between morningness, ease of getting up, insomnia, long sleep, short sleep, and the cortex structure. Results: At the functional level, morningness increased the surface area (SA) of cuneus with global weighted (beta(b) (95% CI): 32.63 (10.35, 54.90), p = 0.004). Short sleep increased SA of the lateral occipital with global weighted (b (95% CI): 394.37(107.89, 680.85), p = 0.007. Short sleep reduced cortical thickness (TH) of paracentral with global weighted (OR (95% CI): −0.11 (−0.19, −0.03), p = 0.006). Short sleep reduced TH of parahippocampal with global weighted (b (95% CI): −0.25 (−0.42, −0.07), p = 0.006). No pleiotropy was detected. However, none of the Bonferroni-corrected p values of the causal relationship between cortical structure and the five types of sleep traits met the threshold. Conclusions: Our results potentially show evidence of a higher risk association between neuropsychiatric disorders and not only paracentral and parahippocampal brain areas atrophy, but also an increase in the middle temporal zone. Our findings shed light on the associations of cortical structure with the occurrence of five types of sleep traits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders)
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15 pages, 720 KiB  
Article
Hypoactive Visual Cortex, Prefrontal Cortex and Insula during Self-Face Recognition in Adults with First-Episode Major Depressive Disorder
by Zebin Fan, Zhening Liu, Jie Yang, Jun Yang, Fuping Sun, Shixiong Tang, Guowei Wu, Shuixia Guo, Xuan Ouyang and Haojuan Tao
Biomedicines 2023, 11(8), 2200; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines11082200 - 4 Aug 2023
Viewed by 886
Abstract
Self-face recognition is a vital aspect of self-referential processing, which is closely related to affective states. However, neuroimaging research on self-face recognition in adults with major depressive disorder is lacking. This study aims to investigate the alteration of brain activation during self-face recognition [...] Read more.
Self-face recognition is a vital aspect of self-referential processing, which is closely related to affective states. However, neuroimaging research on self-face recognition in adults with major depressive disorder is lacking. This study aims to investigate the alteration of brain activation during self-face recognition in adults with first-episode major depressive disorder (FEMDD) via functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI); FEMDD (n = 59) and healthy controls (HC, n = 36) who performed a self-face-recognition task during the fMRI scan. The differences in brain activation signal values between the two groups were analyzed, and Pearson correlation analysis was used to evaluate the relationship between the brain activation of significant group differences and the severity of depressive symptoms and negative self-evaluation; FEMDD showed significantly decreased brain activation in the bilateral occipital cortex, bilateral fusiform gyrus, right inferior frontal gyrus, and right insula during the task compared with HC. No significant correlation was detected between brain activation with significant group differences and the severity of depression and negative self-evaluation in FEMDD or HC. The results suggest the involvement of the malfunctioning visual cortex, prefrontal cortex, and insula in the pathophysiology of self-face recognition in FEMDD, which may provide a novel therapeutic target for adults with FEMDD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Imaging and Cognitive Deficits in Psychiatric Disorders)
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