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Neuroimage. 2016 Jan 1;124(Pt A):75-84. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.08.044. Epub 2015 Aug 28.

White matter abnormalities and impaired attention abilities in children born very preterm.

Author information

1
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia; Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
2
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia; The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia; Department of Paediatrics, The University of Melbourne, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.
3
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.
4
Image Sciences Institute, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands.
5
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia; Department of Pediatric Newborn Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
6
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia; Research Office, The Royal Women's Hospital, Grattan Street, Melbourne, Australia; Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, The University of Melbourne, Royal Women's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.
7
Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia; Department of Psychology, The Alfred, Alfred Health, Melbourne, Australia.
8
Victorian Infant Brain Studies, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia; Department of Paediatrics, The University of Melbourne, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia. Electronic address: peter.anderson@mcri.edu.au.

Abstract

While attention impairments are commonly observed in very preterm (<32weeks' gestational age) children, neuroanatomical correlates of these difficulties are unclear. We aimed to determine whether the microstructural organization of key white matter tracts thought to be involved in attention (cingulum bundle, superior longitudinal fasciculi, reticular activating system, and corpus callosum) were altered in very preterm children compared with term-born controls. We also aimed to determine whether alterations in microstructural organization of these tracts were associated with attention functioning in very preterm children. One hundred and forty-nine very preterm children and 36 term-born controls underwent neuroimaging and assessment of their attention abilities at 7years. Constrained spherical deconvolution and probabilistic tractography was used to identify the key white matter tracts. Altered microstructural organization and reduced tract volume within reticular activating system and corpus callosum were found in the very preterm group compared with the control group. Diffusion and volume changes in the cingulum bundle, superior longitudinal fasciculi, reticular activating system, and corpus callosum were related to variations in attention functioning in the very preterm children. These findings emphasize that white matter tract integrity is associated with later attentional abilities in very preterm children.

KEYWORDS:

Attention; Diffusion-weighted imaging; Magnetic resonance imaging; Very preterm; White matter injury

PMID:
26318524
PMCID:
PMC4791057
DOI:
10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.08.044
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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