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World J Biol Psychiatry. 2009;10(1):65-9. doi: 10.1080/15622970701762536.

Abnormal microstructures of the basal ganglia in schizophrenia revealed by diffusion tensor imaging.

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The Osaka-Hamamatsu Joint Research Center For Child Mental Development, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, Osaka, Japan.


There has been a hypothesis that deficits in the basal ganglia-thalamic system may play an important role in the dysfunctional goal-directed behaviour in schizophrenia. By using diffusion tensor imaging, we measured fractional anisotropy (FA) values in the basal ganglia-thalamic system in 42 schizophrenics and 42 matched controls to investigate microstructural tissue alterations in the basal ganglia-thalamic system in schizophrenia. Schizophrenics had significantly lower FA values in the bilateral globus pallidus and left thalamus compared to controls, suggesting that schizophrenics might have microstructural abnormalities in globus pallidus and thalamus. These data support the notion that myelination abnormalities in basal ganglia-thalamic system are related to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

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