Aberrant topographical organization in gray matter structural network in late life depression: a graph theoretical analysis.

International psychogeriatrics / IPA

PubMedID: 24093725

Lim HK, Jung WS, Aizenstein HJ. Aberrant topographical organization in gray matter structural network in late life depression: a graph theoretical analysis. Int Psychogeriatr. 2013;1-12.
ABSTRACT Background: Although previous studies on late life depression (LLD) have shown morphological abnormalities in frontal-striatal-temporal areas, alterations in coordinated patterns of structural brain networks in LLD are still poorly understood. The aim of this study was to investigate differences in gray matter structural brain network between LLD and healthy controls. Methods: We used gray matter volume measurement from magnetic resonance imaging to investigate large-scale structural brain networks in 37 LLD patients and 40 normal controls. Brain networks were constructed by thresholding gray matter volume correlation matrices of 90 regions and analyzed using graph theoretical approaches. Results: Although both LLD and control groups showed a small-world organization of group networks, there were no differences in the clustering coefficient, the path length, and the small-world index across a wide range of network density. Compared with controls, LLD patients showed decreased nodal betweenness in the medial orbitofrontal and angular gyrus regions. In addition, LLD patients showed hub regions in superior temporal gyrus and middle cingulate gyrus, and putamen. On the other hand, the control group showed hub regions in the medial orbitofrontal gyrus, middle cingulate gyrus, and cuneus. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that the gray matter structural networks are not globally but regionally altered in LLD patients. This multivariate structural analysis using graph theory might provide a more appropriate paradigm for understanding complicated neurobiological mechanism of LLD.