Disrupted topology of frontostriatal circuits is linked to the severity of insomnia

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© 2017 Lu, Liu, Lu, Tang, Tie, Zhang and Yuan. Insomnia is one of the most common health complaints, with a high prevalence of 30~50% in the general population. In particular, neuroimaging research has revealed that widespread dysfunctions in brain regions involved in hyperarousal are strongly correlated with insomnia. However, whether the topology of the intrinsic connectivity is aberrant in insomnia remains largely unknown. In this study, resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rsfMRI) in conjunction with graph theoretical analysis, was used to construct functional connectivity matrices and to extract the attribute features of the small-world networks in insomnia. We examined the alterations in global and local small-world network properties of the distributed brain regions that are predominantly implicated in the frontostriatal network between 30 healthy subjects with insomnia symptoms (IS) and 62 healthy subjects without insomnia symptoms (NIS). Correlations between the small-world properties and clinical measurements were also generated to identify the differences between the two groups. Both the IS group and the NIS group exhibited a small-worldness topology. Meanwhile, the global topological properties didn't show significant difference between the two groups. By contrast, participants in the IS group showed decreased regional degree and efficiency in the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) compared with subjects in the NIS group. More specifically, significantly decreased nodal efficiency in the IFG was found to be negatively associated with insomnia scores, whereas the abnormal changes in nodal betweenness centrality of the right putamen were positively correlated with insomnia scores. Our findings suggested that the aberrant topology of the salience network and frontostriatal connectivity is linked to insomnia, which can serve as an important biomarker for insomnia.




Lu, F. M., Liu, C. H., Lu, S. L., Tang, L. R., Tie, C. L., Zhang, J., & Yuan, Z. (2017). Disrupted topology of frontostriatal circuits is linked to the severity of insomnia. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 11(APR). https://doi.org/10.3389/fnins.2017.00214

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