Location of brain tumor intersecting white matter tracts predicts patient prognosis.
ABSTRACT: Brain tumor cells invade adjacent normal brain along white matter (WM) bundles of axons. We therefore hypothesized that the location of tumor intersecting WM tracts would be associated with differing survival. This study introduces a method, voxel-wise survival analysis (VSA), to determine the relationship between the location of brain tumor intersecting WM tracts and patient prognosis. 113 primary glioblastoma (GBM) patients were retrospectively analyzed for this study. Patient specific tumor location, defined by contrast-enhancement, was combined with diffusion tensor imaging derived tractography to determine the location of axons intersecting tumor enhancement (AXITEs). VSA was then used to determine the relationship between the AXITE location and patient survival. Tumors intersecting the right anterior thalamic radiation (ATR), right inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF), right and left cortico-spinal tract (CST), and corpus callosum (CC) were associated with decreased overall survival. Tumors intersecting the CST, body of the CC, right ATR, posterior IFOF, and inferior longitudinal fasciculus are associated with decreased progression-free survival (PFS), while tumors intersecting the right genu of the CC and anterior IFOF are associated with increased PFS. Patients with tumors intersecting the ATR, IFOF, CST, or CC had significantly improved survival prognosis if they were additionally treated with bevacizumab. This study demonstrates the usefulness of VSA by locating AXITEs associated with poor prognosis in GBM patients. This information should be included in patient-physician conversations, therapeutic strategy, and clinical trial design.
Project description:AIMS:White matter hyperintensity (WMH) is the most common neuroimaging manifestation of cerebral small vessel disease and is related to cognitive dysfunction or dementia. This study aimed to investigate the mechanism and effective indicators to predict WMH-related cognitive impairment. METHODS:We recruited 22 healthy controls (HC), 25 cases of WMH with normal cognition (WMH-NC), and 23 cases of WMH with mild cognitive impairment (WMH-MCI). All individuals underwent diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and a standardized neuropsychological assessment. Automated Fiber Quantification was used to extract altered DTI metrics between groups, and partial correlation was performed to assess the associations between WM integrity and cognitive performance. Furthermore, machine learning analyses were performed to determine underlying imaging markers of WMH-related cognitive impairment. RESULTS:Our study found that mean diffusivity (MD) values of several fiber bundles including the bilateral anterior thalamic radiation (ATR), the left inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF), the right inferior longitudinal fasciculus (ILF), and the right superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF) were negatively correlated with memory function, while that of the anterior component of the right IFOF and the posterior and intermediate component of the right ILF showed significant negative correlation with MMSE and episodic memory, respectively. Furthermore, machine learning analyses showed that the accuracy of recognizing WMH-MCI patients from the WMH populations was up to 80.5% and the intermediate and posterior components of the right ILF and the anterior component of the right IFOF contribute the most. CONCLUSIONS:Changes in the properties of DTI may be the potential mechanism of WMH-related MCI, especially the right IFOF and the right ILF, which may become imaging markers for predicting WMH-related cognitive dysfunction.
Project description:Whole-brain diffusion tensor tractography (DTT) at high signal-to-noise ratio and angular and spatial resolutions were utilized to study the effects of age, sex differences, and lateral asymmetries of 6 white matter pathways (arcuate fasciculus [AF], inferior longitudinal fasciculus, inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus [IFOF], uncinate fasciculus [UF], corticospinal tract [CST], and somatosensory pathway [SS]) in 31 right-handed children (6-17 years). Fractional anisotropy (FA), a measure of the orientational variance in water molecular diffusivity, and the magnitude of water diffusivity (parallel, perpendicular, and mean diffusivity) along the pathways were quantified. Three major patterns of maturation were observed: 1) significant increase in FA with age, accompanied by significant decreases in all 3 diffusivities (e.g., left IFOF); 2) significant decreases in all three diffusivities with age without significant changes in FA (e.g., left CST); and 3) no significant age-related changes in FA or diffusivity (e.g., SS). Sex differences were minimal. Many pathways showed lateral asymmetries. In the right hemisphere, the frontotemporal (FT) segment of AF was not visualized in a substantial (29%) number of participants. FA was higher in the left hemisphere in the FT segment of AF, UF, and CST, whereas it was lower in the frontoparietal segment of AF. This study provides normative data essential for the interpretation of pediatric brain DTT measurements in both health and disease.
Project description:Previous studies on congenital amusia mainly focused on the impaired fronto-temporal pathway. It is possible that neural pathways of amusia patients on a larger scale are affected. In this study, we investigated changes in structural connections by applying both tract-based and network-based analysis to DTI data of 12 subjects with congenital amusia and 20 demographic-matched normal controls. TBSS (tract-based spatial statistics) was used to detect microstructural changes. The results showed that amusics had higher diffusivity indices in the corpus callosum, the right inferior/superior longitudinal fasciculus, and the right inferior frontal-occipital fasciculus (IFOF). The axial diffusivity values of the right IFOF were negatively correlated with musical scores in the amusia group. Network-based analysis showed that the efficiency of the brain network was reduced in amusics. The impairments of WM tracts were also found to be correlated with reduced network efficiency in amusics. This suggests that impaired WM tracts may lead to the reduced network efficiency seen in amusics. Our findings suggest that congenital amusia is a disconnection syndrome.
Project description:We combined tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS) and magnetization transfer (MT) imaging to assess white matter (WM) tract-specific short-term changes in early primary-progressive multiple sclerosis (PPMS) and their relationships with clinical progression. Twenty-one PPMS patients within 5 years from onset underwent MT and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) at baseline and after 12 months. Patients' disability was assessed. DTI data were processed to compute fractional anisotropy (FA) and to generate a common WM "skeleton," which represents the tracts that are "common" to all subjects using TBSS. The MT ratio (MTR) was computed from MT data and co-registered with the DTI. The skeletonization procedure derived for FA was applied to each subject's MTR image to obtain a "skeletonised" MTR map for every subject. Permutation tests were used to assess (i) changes in FA, principal diffusivities, and MTR over the follow-up, and (ii) associations between changes in imaging parameters and changes in disability. Patients showed significant decreases in MTR over one year in the corpus callosum (CC), bilateral corticospinal tract (CST), thalamic radiations, and superior and inferior longitudinal fasciculi. These changes were located both within lesions and the normal-appearing WM. No significant longitudinal change in skeletonised FA was found, but radial diffusivity (RD) significantly increased in several regions, including the CST bilaterally and the right inferior longitudinal fasciculus. MTR decreases, RD increases, and axial diffusivity decreases in the CC and CST correlated with a deterioration in the upper limb function. We detected tract-specific multimodal imaging changes that reflect the accrual of microstructural damage and possibly contribute to clinical impairment in PPMS. We propose a novel methodology that can be extended to other diseases to map cross-subject and tract-specific changes in MTR.
Project description:<b>Objective:</b> To characterize earlier damage pattern of white matter (WM) microstructure in cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD) and its relationship with cognitive domain dysfunction. <b>Methods:</b> A total of 144 CSVD patients and 100 healthy controls who underwent neuropsychological measurements and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) examination were recruited. Cognitive function, emotion, and gait were assessed in each participant. The automated fiber quantification (AFQ) technique was used to extract different fiber properties between groups, and partial correlation and general linear regression analyses were performed to assess the relationship between position-specific WM microstructure and cognitive function. <b>Results:</b> Specific segments in the association fibers, commissural WM regions of interest (ROIs), and projection fibers were damaged in the CSVD group [<i>P</i> < 0.05, family-wise error (FWE) correction], and these damaged segments showed interhemispheric symmetry. In addition, the damage to specific tract profiles [including the posteromedial component of the right cingulum cingulate (CC), the occipital lobe portion of the callosum forceps major, the posterior portion of the left superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF), and the bilateral anterior thalamic radiation (ATR)] was related to the dysfunction in specific cognitive domains. Among these tracts, we found the ATR to be the key set of tracts whose profiles were most associated with cognitive dysfunction. The left ATR was a specific fiber bundle associated with episode memory and language function, whereas the fractional anisotropy (FA) values of the intermediate component of the right ATR were negatively correlated with executive function and gait evaluation. It should be noted that the abovementioned relationships could not survive the Bonferroni correction (<i>p</i> < 0.05/27), so we chose more liberal uncorrected statistical thresholds. <b>Conclusions:</b> Damage to the WM fiber bundles showed extensive interhemispheric symmetry and was limited to particular segments in CSVD patients. Disruption of strategically located fibers was associated with different cognitive deficits, especially the bilateral ATR.
Project description:The heaviest period of cannabis use coincides with ongoing white matter (WM) maturation. Further, cannabis-related changes may be moderated by FAAH genotype (rs324420). We examined the association between cannabis use and FAAH genotype on frontolimbic WM integrity in adolescents and emerging adults. We then tested whether observed WM abnormalities were linked with depressive or apathy symptoms.Participants included 37 cannabis users and 37 healthy controls (33 female; ages 18-25). Multiple regressions examined the independent and interactive effects of variables on WM integrity.Regular cannabis users demonstrated reduced WM integrity in the bilateral uncinate fasciculus (UNC) (MD, right: p = .009 and left: p = .009; FA, right: p = .04 and left: p = .03) and forceps minor (fMinor) (MD, p = .03) compared to healthy controls. Marginally reduced WM integrity in the cannabis users was found in the left anterior thalamic radiation (ATR) (FA, p = .08). Cannabis group ? FAAH genotype interaction predicted WM integrity in bilateral ATR (FA, right: p = .05 and left: p = .001) and fMinor (FA, p = .02). In cannabis users, poorer WM integrity was correlated with increased symptoms of depression and apathy in bilateral ATR and UNC.Consistent with prior findings, cannabis use was associated with reduced frontolimbic WM integrity. WM integrity was also moderated by FAAH genotype, in that cannabis-using FAAH C/C carriers and A carrying controls had reduced WM integrity compared to control C/C carriers. Observed frontolimbic white matter abnormalities were linked with increased depressive and apathy symptoms in the cannabis users.
Project description:To characterize white matter abnormalities in adolescents with early-onset schizophrenia (EOS) relative to 3 comparison groups (adolescents at clinical high risk for developing schizophrenia [CHR], adolescents with cannabis use disorder [CUD], and healthy controls [HC]), and to identify neurocognitive correlates of white matter abnormalities in EOS.We used diffusion tensor imaging and tractography methods to examine fractional anisotropy (FA) of the cingulum bundle, superior longitudinal fasciculus, corticospinal tract (CST), inferior longitudinal fasciculus (ILF), inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF), and uncinate fasciculus in adolescents with EOS (n = 55), CHR (n = 21), CUD (n = 31), and HC (n = 55). FA in tracts that were significantly altered in EOS was correlated with neurocognitive performance.EOS and CHR groups had significantly lower FA than HC in 4 tracts, namely, bilateral CST, left ILF, and left IFOF. CUD had lower FA than HC in left IFOF. Lower FA in left IFOF and left ILF predicted worse neurocognitive performance in EOS.This study identified white matter abnormalities of the left ILF and left IFOF as possible biomarkers of vulnerability for developing schizophrenia. Lower FA in these tracts may disrupt functioning of ventral visual and language streams, producing domain-specific neurocognitive deficits that interfere with higher-order cognitive abilities.
Project description:Background:Elucidating developmental trajectories of white matter (WM) microstructure is critically important for understanding normal development and regional vulnerabilities in several brain disorders. Diffusion Weighted Imaging (DWI) is currently the method of choice for in-vivo white matter assessment. A majority of neonatal studies use the standard Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) model although more advanced models such as the Neurite Orientation Dispersion and Density Imaging (NODDI) model and the Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM) have been used in adult population. In this study, we compare the ability of these three diffusion models to detect regional white matter maturation in typically developing control (TDC) neonates and regional abnormalities in neonates with congenital heart disease (CHD). Methods:Multiple b-value diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging (dMRI) data were acquired from TDC neonates (N?=?16) at 38 to 47 gestational weeks (GW) and CHD neonates (N?=?19) aged 37?weeks to 41?weeks. Measures calculated from the diffusion signal included not only Mean Diffusivity (MD) and Fractional Anisotropy (FA) derived from the standard DTI model, but also three advanced diffusion measures, namely, the fiber Orientation Dispersion Index (ODI), the isotropic volume fraction (Viso), and the intracellular volume fraction (Vic) derived from the NODDI model. Further, we used two novel measures from a non-parametric GMM, namely the Return-to-Origin Probability (RTOP) and Return-to-Axis Probability (RTAP), which are sensitive to axonal/cellular volume and density respectively. Using atlas-based registration, 22 white matter regions (6 projection, 4 association, and 1 callosal pathways bilaterally in each hemisphere) were selected and the mean value of all 7 measures were calculated in each region. These values were used as dependent variables, with GW as the independent variable in a linear regression model. Finally, we compared CHD and TDC groups on these measures in each ROI after removing age-related trends from both the groups. Results:Linear analysis in the TDC population revealed significant correlations with GW (age) in 12 projection pathways for MD, Vic, RTAP, and 11 pathways for RTOP. Several association pathways were also significantly correlated with GW for MD, Vic, RTAP, and RTOP. The right callosal pathway was significantly correlated with GW for Vic. Consistent with the pathophysiology of altered development in CHD, diffusion measures demonstrated differences in the association pathways involved in language systems, namely the Uncinate Fasciculus (UF), the Inferior Fronto-occipital Fasciculus (IFOF), and the Superior Longitudinal Fasciculus (SLF). Overall, the group comparison between CHD and TDC revealed lower FA, Vic, RTAP, and RTOP for CHD bilaterally in the a) UF, b) Corpus Callosum (CC), and c) Superior Fronto-Occipital Fasciculus (SFOF). Moreover, FA was lower for CHD in the a) left SLF, b) bilateral Anterior Corona Radiata (ACR) and left Retrolenticular part of the Internal Capsule (RIC). Vic was also lower for CHD in the left Posterior Limb of the Internal Capsule (PLIC). ODI was higher for CHD in the left CC. RTAP was lower for CHD in the left IFOF, while RTOP was lower in CHD in the: a) left ACR, b) left IFOF and c) right Anterior Limb of the Internal Capsule (ALIC). Conclusion:In this study, all three methods revealed the expected changes in the WM regions during the early postnatal weeks; however, GMM outperformed DTI and NODDI as it showed significantly larger effect sizes while detecting differences between the TDC and CHD neonates. Future studies based on a larger sample are needed to confirm these results and to explore clinical correlates.
Project description:<b>Background:</b> Growing evidence suggests that cannabis and alcohol (and especially binge alcohol drinking) use independently alters neural structure and functioning, particularly during sensitive developmental time periods (e.g., emerging adulthood). However, few studies have investigated the effects of same-day use of these two substances. Here, white matter (WM) integrity was investigated in relation to binge alcohol drinking, cannabis, and same-day binge and cannabis co-use in adolescents and emerging adults. <b>Methods:</b> FreeSurfer's TRACULA was used to assess WM in emerging adults (<i>n</i>=75; 16-26 years old). Timeline Followback calculated past month cannabis use, binge episodes, and same-day cannabis and binge drinking co-use. Multiple regressions investigated WM by past month cannabis, binge, and co-use. <b>Results:</b> Results revealed co-use episodes were related to lower fractional anisotropy (FA), an overall measure of neuronal integrity, in three tracts (left inferior longitudinal fasciculus [ILF], <i>p</i>=0.02; right anterior thalamic radiation [ATR], <i>p</i>=0.01; and left cingulum cingulate gyrus [CCG], <i>p</i>=0.01); and lower axial diffusivity in left ILF (<i>p</i>=0.03). Cannabis use was significantly related to greater FA in left ILF (<i>p</i>=0.005), left ATR (<i>p</i>=0.02), right ATR (<i>p</i>=0.05), left CCG (<i>p</i>=0.006), right CCG (<i>p</i>=0.03), and right superior longitudinal fasciculus parietal (<i>p</i>=0.03). Binge episodes related to greater FA in right ATR (<i>p</i>=0.03). <b>Conclusions:</b> These findings suggest that co-use was associated with lower WM integrity across frontolimbic tracts. In addition, greater FA was related to greater cannabis use across several tracts and binge alcohol use in one tract. Co-users also appeared to be more severe substance users. Future research should investigate the potential independent and interactive effects of these substances on pre-clinical and clinical levels.