MRS Study of ACC in Asperger's Syndrome
Hisaoka, Sonoka Tokushima University
Abe, Yoko Tokushima University
Miyazaki, Masahito Tokushima University
Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
Anterior Cingulate Cortex
Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H MRS) is a noninvasive neuroimaging method to quantify biochemical metabolites in vivo and it can serve as a powerful tool to monitor neurobiochemical profiles in the brain. Asperger's syndrome (AS) is a type of autism spectrum disorder, which is characterized by impaired social skills and restrictive, repetitive patterns of interest and activities, while intellectual levels and language skills are relatively preserved. Despite clinical aspects have been well-characterized, neurometabolic profiling in the brain of AS remains to be clear. The present study used proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H MRS) to investigate whether pediatric AS is associated with measurable neurometabolic abnormalities that can contribute new information on the neurobiological underpinnings of the disorder.
Study participants consisted of 34 children with AS (2-12 years old; mean age 5.2 (±2.0); 28 boys) and 19 typically developed children (2-11 years old; mean age 5.6 (±2.6); 12 boys) who served as the normal control group. The 1H MRS data were obtained from two regions of interest: the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and left cerebellum.
In the ACC, levels of N-acetylaspartate (NAA), total creatine (tCr), total choline-containing compounds (tCho) and myo-Inositol (mI) were significantly decreased in children with AS compared to controls. On the other hand, no significant group differences in any of the metabolites were found in the left cerebellum. Neither age nor sex accounted for the metabolic findings in the regions.
The finding of decreased levels of NAA, tCr, tCho, and mI in the ACC but not in left cerebellar voxels in the AS, suggests a lower ACC neuronal density in the present AS cohort compared to controls.
Copyright: © 2017 Goji et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ )
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