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Cortex. 2016 Apr;77:119-131. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2016.01.012. Epub 2016 Jan 29.

Altered resting-state whole-brain functional networks of neonates with intrauterine growth restriction.

Author information

1
Fetal i+D Fetal Medicine Research Center, BCNatal - Barcelona Center for Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine (Hospital Clínic and Hospital Sant Joan de Deu), IDIBAPS, University of Barcelona, Spain; Centre for the Developing Brain, Division of Imaging Sciences & Biomedical Engineering, King's College London, London, United Kingdom. Electronic address: dbatalle@clinic.ub.es.
2
Fetal i+D Fetal Medicine Research Center, BCNatal - Barcelona Center for Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine (Hospital Clínic and Hospital Sant Joan de Deu), IDIBAPS, University of Barcelona, Spain.
3
Center for Brain and Cognition, Computational Neuroscience Group, Department of Information and Communication Technologies, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain.
4
Department of Radiology, Centre de Diagnòstic per la Imatge Clínic (CDIC), Hospital Clínic, Barcelona, Spain; Magnetic Resonance Image Core Facility, Institut d'Investigacions Biomediques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), Barcelona, Spain.
5
Center for Brain and Cognition, Computational Neuroscience Group, Department of Information and Communication Technologies, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain; Institució Catalana de la Recerca i Estudis Avançats (ICREA), Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain.
6
Fetal i+D Fetal Medicine Research Center, BCNatal - Barcelona Center for Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine (Hospital Clínic and Hospital Sant Joan de Deu), IDIBAPS, University of Barcelona, Spain; Centre for Biomedical Research on Rare Diseases (CIBER-ER), Spain.

Abstract

The feasibility to use functional MRI (fMRI) during natural sleep to assess low-frequency basal brain activity fluctuations in human neonates has been demonstrated, although its potential to characterise pathologies of prenatal origin has not yet been exploited. In the present study, we used intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) as a model of altered neurodevelopment due to prenatal condition to show the suitability of brain networks to characterise functional brain organisation at neonatal age. Particularly, we analysed resting-state fMRI signal of 20 neonates with IUGR and 13 controls, obtaining whole-brain functional networks based on correlations of blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signal in 90 grey matter regions of an anatomical atlas (AAL). Characterisation of the networks obtained with graph theoretical features showed increased network infrastructure and raw efficiencies but reduced efficiency after normalisation, demonstrating hyper-connected but sub-optimally organised IUGR functional brain networks. Significant association of network features with neurobehavioral scores was also found. Further assessment of spatiotemporal dynamics displayed alterations into features associated to frontal, cingulate and lingual cortices. These findings show the capacity of functional brain networks to characterise brain reorganisation from an early age, and their potential to develop biomarkers of altered neurodevelopment.

KEYWORDS:

Brain mapping; Connectomics; Fetal growth retardation; Newborn; fMRI

PMID:
26927726
DOI:
10.1016/j.cortex.2016.01.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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