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Diffusion Imaging of White Matter In Schizophrenia: Progress and Future Directions.

Authors
  • Karlsgodt, Katherine H1
  • 1 Psychiatry Research Division, Zucker Hillside Hospital and Feinstein Institute for Medical Research; Department of Psychiatry, Hofstra NorthShore LIJ School of Medicine.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Biological psychiatry. Cognitive neuroscience and neuroimaging
Publication Date
May 01, 2016
Volume
1
Issue
3
Pages
209–217
Identifiers
PMID: 27453952
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a powerful tool for the in-vivo assessment of white matter microstructure. The application of DTI methodologies to the study of schizophrenia has supported and advanced the hypothesis of schizophrenia as a disorder of disrupted connectivity. In the context of impaired structural connectivity, the extended time frame of white matter development may offer unique opportunities for treatment that can capitalize on the neural flexibility that is still present in the period leading up to and after disease onset. Therefore, it is important to gain a clear understanding of white matter deficits and how they may emerge and change across the illness. However, while there is broad consistency in the findings of white matter deficits in patients with schizophrenia, there is also a great deal of variability in specific findings across studies. In this review, the aim is to move beyond summarizing case-control analyses, to consider the many factors that may impact DTI measures, to explain variability of findings, and to explore future directions for the field. The topics explored include ways to parse DTI patterns associated with different disease subtypes, ways in which novel and established treatments might interact with or enhance white matter, ways of dissociating developmental change from the disease process itself, and understanding the role of emerging analytic methodologies.

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