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White matter microstructure and its relation to clinical features of obsessive–compulsive disorder: findings from the ENIGMA OCD Working Group

Piras, F; Piras, F; Abe, Y; Agarwal, SM; Anticevic, A; Ameis, S; Arnold, P; ... Spalletta, G; + view all (2021) White matter microstructure and its relation to clinical features of obsessive–compulsive disorder: findings from the ENIGMA OCD Working Group. Translational Psychiatry , 11 , Article 173. 10.1038/s41398-021-01276-z. Green open access

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Abstract

Microstructural alterations in cortico-subcortical connections are thought to be present in obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD). However, prior studies have yielded inconsistent findings, perhaps because small sample sizes provided insufficient power to detect subtle abnormalities. Here we investigated microstructural white matter alterations and their relation to clinical features in the largest dataset of adult and pediatric OCD to date. We analyzed diffusion tensor imaging metrics from 700 adult patients and 645 adult controls, as well as 174 pediatric patients and 144 pediatric controls across 19 sites participating in the ENIGMA OCD Working Group, in a cross-sectional case-control magnetic resonance study. We extracted measures of fractional anisotropy (FA) as main outcome, and mean diffusivity, radial diffusivity, and axial diffusivity as secondary outcomes for 25 white matter regions. We meta-analyzed patient-control group differences (Cohen’s d) across sites, after adjusting for age and sex, and investigated associations with clinical characteristics. Adult OCD patients showed significant FA reduction in the sagittal stratum (d = −0.21, z = −3.21, p = 0.001) and posterior thalamic radiation (d = −0.26, z = −4.57, p < 0.0001). In the sagittal stratum, lower FA was associated with a younger age of onset (z = 2.71, p = 0.006), longer duration of illness (z = −2.086, p = 0.036), and a higher percentage of medicated patients in the cohorts studied (z = −1.98, p = 0.047). No significant association with symptom severity was found. Pediatric OCD patients did not show any detectable microstructural abnormalities compared to controls. Our findings of microstructural alterations in projection and association fibers to posterior brain regions in OCD are consistent with models emphasizing deficits in connectivity as an important feature of this disorder.

Type: Article
Title: White matter microstructure and its relation to clinical features of obsessive–compulsive disorder: findings from the ENIGMA OCD Working Group
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41398-021-01276-z
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41398-021-01276-z
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Neuroscience, Psychiatric disorders
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10125306
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