Functional brain networks in treatment-resistant schizophrenia

Journal article


Ganella, Eleni P., Bartholomeusz, Cali F., Seguin, Caio, Whittle, Sarah, Bousman, Chad, Phassouliotis, Christina, Everall, Ian, Pantelis, Christos and Zalesky, Andrew. (2017) Functional brain networks in treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Research. 184, pp. 73-81. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.schres.2016.12.008
AuthorsGanella, Eleni P., Bartholomeusz, Cali F., Seguin, Caio, Whittle, Sarah, Bousman, Chad, Phassouliotis, Christina, Everall, Ian, Pantelis, Christos and Zalesky, Andrew
Abstract

Introduction
Up to 20% of individuals with schizophrenia show minimal or no response to medication and are considered to have ‘treatment-resistant’ schizophrenia (TRS). Unlike early and established schizophrenia, few studies have investigated resting-state functional connectivity (rs-FC) in TRS. Here, we test for disruptions in FC and altered efficiency of functional brain networks in a well-characterized cohort of TRS patients.

Methods
Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to investigate functional brain networks in 42 TRS participants prescribed clozapine (30 males, mean age = 41.3(10)) and 42 healthy controls (24 males, mean age = 38.4(10)). Graph analysis was used to characterize between-group differences in local and global efficiency of functional brain network organization as well as the strength of FC.

Results
Global brain FC was reduced in TRS patients (p = 0.0001). Relative to controls, 3.4% of all functional connections showed reduced strength in TRS (p < 0.001), predominantly involving fronto-temporal, fronto-occipital and temporo-occipital connections. Global efficiency was reduced in TRS (p = 0.0015), whereas local efficiency was increased (p = 0.0042).

Conclusions
TRS is associated with widespread reductions in rs-FC and altered network topology. Increased local functional network efficiency coupled with decreased global efficiency suggests that hub-to-hub connections are preferentially affected in TRS. These findings further our understanding of the neurobiological impairments in TRS.

KeywordsFunctional connectivity; Treatment-resistant schizophrenia; Network efficiency; FMRI
Year2017
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Journal citation184, pp. 73-81
PublisherElsevier BV
ISSN0920-9964
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.schres.2016.12.008
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85008221160
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range73-81
FunderNational Health and Medical Research Council
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online20 Dec 2016
Publication process dates
Accepted09 Dec 2016
Deposited11 Jun 2021
Grant IDNHMRC/628386
NHMRC/1105825
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