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Cerebellar gray matter and lobular volumes correlate with core autism symptoms.

D'Mello AM, Crocetti D, Mostofsky SH, Stoodley CJ - Neuroimage Clin (2015)

Bottom Line: Both VBM and the SUIT analyses revealed reduced GM in ASD children in cerebellar lobule VII (Crus I/II).The degree of regional and lobular gray matter reductions in different cerebellar subregions correlated with the severity of symptoms in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors.These results emphasize the importance of the location within the cerebellum to the potential functional impact of structural differences in ASD, and suggest that GM differences in cerebellar right Crus I/II are associated with the core ASD profile.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Developmental Neuroscience Lab, Department of Psychology and Center for Behavioral Neuroscience, American University, Washington, DC, USA.

ABSTRACT
Neuroanatomical differences in the cerebellum are among the most consistent findings in autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but little is known about the relationship between cerebellar dysfunction and core ASD symptoms. The newly-emerging existence of cerebellar sensorimotor and cognitive subregions provides a new framework for interpreting the functional significance of cerebellar findings in ASD. Here we use two complementary analyses - whole-brain voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and the SUIT cerebellar atlas - to investigate cerebellar regional gray matter (GM) and volumetric lobular measurements in 35 children with ASD and 35 typically-developing (TD) children (mean age 10.4 ± 1.6 years; range 8-13 years). To examine the relationships between cerebellar structure and core ASD symptoms, correlations were calculated between scores on the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) and Autism Diagnostic Interview (ADI) and the VBM and volumetric data. Both VBM and the SUIT analyses revealed reduced GM in ASD children in cerebellar lobule VII (Crus I/II). The degree of regional and lobular gray matter reductions in different cerebellar subregions correlated with the severity of symptoms in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors. Structural differences and behavioral correlations converged on right cerebellar Crus I/II, a region which shows structural and functional connectivity with fronto-parietal and default mode networks. These results emphasize the importance of the location within the cerebellum to the potential functional impact of structural differences in ASD, and suggest that GM differences in cerebellar right Crus I/II are associated with the core ASD profile.

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Cerebellar regions in which reduced GM correlated with ADOS and ADI scores. **Largest and most significant cluster in the brain (k = 2173, T = 4.61); *k = 49.
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f0015: Cerebellar regions in which reduced GM correlated with ADOS and ADI scores. **Largest and most significant cluster in the brain (k = 2173, T = 4.61); *k = 49.

Mentions: No significant correlations were found between cerebellar GM and ADOS or ADI Communication scores. Higher severity ADOS Social + Communication scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobule VI/Crus I and right lobule VIIIA/VIIIB (cyan, Fig. 3). Poorer ADOS Social Interaction scores correlated with reduced GM in several clusters in vermis I–IV; vermis V–VI; right lobule I–IV; right lobule VI/Crus I/Crus II (largest and most significant cluster in the brain); right lobule VIIIA/VIIIB; left lobule VIIIA/VIIIB; and left lobule VIIIB/IX (purple, Fig. 3). Higher severity ADOS Stereotyped Behaviors and Restricted Interests scores correlated with reduced GM in right Crus I/II (green, Fig. 3), and more severe ADI Restricted, Repetitive, and Stereotyped Behaviors scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobules I–V (yellow, Fig. 3). Higher severity ADI, Social Interaction scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobules I–IV (blue, Fig. 3). Fig. 4 shows these findings overlaid on the 7-network functional connectivity maps established by Buckner et al. (2011). Correlations with core ASD symptoms converged on right Crus I/II, where there was significantly reduced GM in the ASD group in both the VBM and lobular analyses (Fig. 4F).


Cerebellar gray matter and lobular volumes correlate with core autism symptoms.

D'Mello AM, Crocetti D, Mostofsky SH, Stoodley CJ - Neuroimage Clin (2015)

Cerebellar regions in which reduced GM correlated with ADOS and ADI scores. **Largest and most significant cluster in the brain (k = 2173, T = 4.61); *k = 49.
© Copyright Policy - CC BY-NC-ND
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4375648&req=5

f0015: Cerebellar regions in which reduced GM correlated with ADOS and ADI scores. **Largest and most significant cluster in the brain (k = 2173, T = 4.61); *k = 49.
Mentions: No significant correlations were found between cerebellar GM and ADOS or ADI Communication scores. Higher severity ADOS Social + Communication scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobule VI/Crus I and right lobule VIIIA/VIIIB (cyan, Fig. 3). Poorer ADOS Social Interaction scores correlated with reduced GM in several clusters in vermis I–IV; vermis V–VI; right lobule I–IV; right lobule VI/Crus I/Crus II (largest and most significant cluster in the brain); right lobule VIIIA/VIIIB; left lobule VIIIA/VIIIB; and left lobule VIIIB/IX (purple, Fig. 3). Higher severity ADOS Stereotyped Behaviors and Restricted Interests scores correlated with reduced GM in right Crus I/II (green, Fig. 3), and more severe ADI Restricted, Repetitive, and Stereotyped Behaviors scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobules I–V (yellow, Fig. 3). Higher severity ADI, Social Interaction scores correlated with reduced GM in right lobules I–IV (blue, Fig. 3). Fig. 4 shows these findings overlaid on the 7-network functional connectivity maps established by Buckner et al. (2011). Correlations with core ASD symptoms converged on right Crus I/II, where there was significantly reduced GM in the ASD group in both the VBM and lobular analyses (Fig. 4F).

Bottom Line: Both VBM and the SUIT analyses revealed reduced GM in ASD children in cerebellar lobule VII (Crus I/II).The degree of regional and lobular gray matter reductions in different cerebellar subregions correlated with the severity of symptoms in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors.These results emphasize the importance of the location within the cerebellum to the potential functional impact of structural differences in ASD, and suggest that GM differences in cerebellar right Crus I/II are associated with the core ASD profile.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Developmental Neuroscience Lab, Department of Psychology and Center for Behavioral Neuroscience, American University, Washington, DC, USA.

ABSTRACT
Neuroanatomical differences in the cerebellum are among the most consistent findings in autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but little is known about the relationship between cerebellar dysfunction and core ASD symptoms. The newly-emerging existence of cerebellar sensorimotor and cognitive subregions provides a new framework for interpreting the functional significance of cerebellar findings in ASD. Here we use two complementary analyses - whole-brain voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and the SUIT cerebellar atlas - to investigate cerebellar regional gray matter (GM) and volumetric lobular measurements in 35 children with ASD and 35 typically-developing (TD) children (mean age 10.4 ± 1.6 years; range 8-13 years). To examine the relationships between cerebellar structure and core ASD symptoms, correlations were calculated between scores on the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) and Autism Diagnostic Interview (ADI) and the VBM and volumetric data. Both VBM and the SUIT analyses revealed reduced GM in ASD children in cerebellar lobule VII (Crus I/II). The degree of regional and lobular gray matter reductions in different cerebellar subregions correlated with the severity of symptoms in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors. Structural differences and behavioral correlations converged on right cerebellar Crus I/II, a region which shows structural and functional connectivity with fronto-parietal and default mode networks. These results emphasize the importance of the location within the cerebellum to the potential functional impact of structural differences in ASD, and suggest that GM differences in cerebellar right Crus I/II are associated with the core ASD profile.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus