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MRI assessment of cortical thickness and functional activity changes in adolescent girls following three months of practice on a visual-spatial task.

Haier RJ, Karama S, Leyba L, Jung RE - BMC Res Notes (2009)

Bottom Line: Based on fMRI BOLD signals, the Tetris group showed cortical activations throughout the brain while playing Tetris, but significant BOLD decreases, mostly in frontal areas, were observed after practice.Over the same period, brain activity decreases were observed in several other areas.These data indicate that structural change in one brain area does not necessarily result in functional change in the same location, at least on the levels assessed with these MRI methods.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Medicine (Emeritus), University of California, Irvine CA, USA. rich.haier@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Background: Neuro-imaging studies demonstrate plasticity of cortical gray matter before and after practice for some motor and cognitive tasks in adults. Other imaging studies show functional changes after practice, but there is not yet direct evidence of how structural and functional changes may be related. A fundamental question is whether they occur at the same cortical sites, adjacent sites, or sites in other parts of a network.

Findings: Using a 3 T MRI, we obtained structural and functional images in adolescent girls before and after practice on a visual-spatial problem-solving computer game, Tetris. After three months of practice, compared to the structural scans of controls, the group with Tetris practice showed thicker cortex, primarily in two areas: left BAs 6 and 22/38. Based on fMRI BOLD signals, the Tetris group showed cortical activations throughout the brain while playing Tetris, but significant BOLD decreases, mostly in frontal areas, were observed after practice. None of these BOLD decreases, however, overlapped with the cortical thickness changes.

Conclusion: Regional cortical thickness changes were observed after three months of Tetris practice. Over the same period, brain activity decreases were observed in several other areas. These data indicate that structural change in one brain area does not necessarily result in functional change in the same location, at least on the levels assessed with these MRI methods.

No MeSH data available.


Cortical Thickness and BOLD Changes. Both cortical thickness change after practice (red) and BOLD signal increases (green) or decreases (blue) during Tetris task are shown. Top row is at baseline, middle row is at follow-up, bottom row is follow-up minus baseline. Left column is left hemisphere. Template is Surfstat MNI. Arrows indicate small areas of overlap.
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Figure 3: Cortical Thickness and BOLD Changes. Both cortical thickness change after practice (red) and BOLD signal increases (green) or decreases (blue) during Tetris task are shown. Top row is at baseline, middle row is at follow-up, bottom row is follow-up minus baseline. Left column is left hemisphere. Template is Surfstat MNI. Arrows indicate small areas of overlap.

Mentions: Figure 3 shows both CT change and BOLD signal during Tetris play. For baseline and follow-up, overlap was limited to a few small areas of BAs 6, 7, 22, and 19 (arrows in Figure 3, top and middle rows). The areas with decreased activation over the practice period (follow-up minus baseline) showed no overlap with CT increases (bottom row). To increase statistical power, we did additional analyses, first restricting the CT analyses to regions that showed BOLD changes; and second, restricting the BOLD analyses to regions that showed CT changes. Neither analysis identified any new regions of overlap (p < .005, uncorrected).


MRI assessment of cortical thickness and functional activity changes in adolescent girls following three months of practice on a visual-spatial task.

Haier RJ, Karama S, Leyba L, Jung RE - BMC Res Notes (2009)

Cortical Thickness and BOLD Changes. Both cortical thickness change after practice (red) and BOLD signal increases (green) or decreases (blue) during Tetris task are shown. Top row is at baseline, middle row is at follow-up, bottom row is follow-up minus baseline. Left column is left hemisphere. Template is Surfstat MNI. Arrows indicate small areas of overlap.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2746806&req=5

Figure 3: Cortical Thickness and BOLD Changes. Both cortical thickness change after practice (red) and BOLD signal increases (green) or decreases (blue) during Tetris task are shown. Top row is at baseline, middle row is at follow-up, bottom row is follow-up minus baseline. Left column is left hemisphere. Template is Surfstat MNI. Arrows indicate small areas of overlap.
Mentions: Figure 3 shows both CT change and BOLD signal during Tetris play. For baseline and follow-up, overlap was limited to a few small areas of BAs 6, 7, 22, and 19 (arrows in Figure 3, top and middle rows). The areas with decreased activation over the practice period (follow-up minus baseline) showed no overlap with CT increases (bottom row). To increase statistical power, we did additional analyses, first restricting the CT analyses to regions that showed BOLD changes; and second, restricting the BOLD analyses to regions that showed CT changes. Neither analysis identified any new regions of overlap (p < .005, uncorrected).

Bottom Line: Based on fMRI BOLD signals, the Tetris group showed cortical activations throughout the brain while playing Tetris, but significant BOLD decreases, mostly in frontal areas, were observed after practice.Over the same period, brain activity decreases were observed in several other areas.These data indicate that structural change in one brain area does not necessarily result in functional change in the same location, at least on the levels assessed with these MRI methods.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Medicine (Emeritus), University of California, Irvine CA, USA. rich.haier@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Background: Neuro-imaging studies demonstrate plasticity of cortical gray matter before and after practice for some motor and cognitive tasks in adults. Other imaging studies show functional changes after practice, but there is not yet direct evidence of how structural and functional changes may be related. A fundamental question is whether they occur at the same cortical sites, adjacent sites, or sites in other parts of a network.

Findings: Using a 3 T MRI, we obtained structural and functional images in adolescent girls before and after practice on a visual-spatial problem-solving computer game, Tetris. After three months of practice, compared to the structural scans of controls, the group with Tetris practice showed thicker cortex, primarily in two areas: left BAs 6 and 22/38. Based on fMRI BOLD signals, the Tetris group showed cortical activations throughout the brain while playing Tetris, but significant BOLD decreases, mostly in frontal areas, were observed after practice. None of these BOLD decreases, however, overlapped with the cortical thickness changes.

Conclusion: Regional cortical thickness changes were observed after three months of Tetris practice. Over the same period, brain activity decreases were observed in several other areas. These data indicate that structural change in one brain area does not necessarily result in functional change in the same location, at least on the levels assessed with these MRI methods.

No MeSH data available.