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Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2017 Feb 13;13:427-435. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S128811. eCollection 2017.

Abnormal whole-brain functional connectivity in patients with primary insomnia.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Imaging, The Affiliated Guangdong No 2 Provincial People's Hospital of Southern Medical University, The Third Clinical Medical College of Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, People's Republic of China.

Abstract

The investigation of the mechanism of insomnia could provide the basis for improved understanding and treatment of insomnia. The aim of this study is to investigate the abnormal functional connectivity throughout the entire brain of insomnia patients, and analyze the global distribution of these abnormalities. Whole brains of 50 patients with insomnia and 40 healthy controls were divided into 116 regions and abnormal connectivities were identified by comparing the Pearson's correlation coefficients of each pair using general linear model analyses with covariates of age, sex, and duration of education. In patients with insomnia, regions that relate to wakefulness, emotion, worry/rumination, saliency/attention, and sensory-motor showed increased positive connectivity with each other; however, regions that often restrain each other, such as regions in salience network with regions in default mode network, showed decreased positive connectivity. Correlation analysis indicated that some increased positive functional connectivity was associated with the Self-Rating Depression Scale, Insomnia Severity Index, and Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index scores. According to our findings, increased and decreased positive connectivities suggest function strengthening and function disinhibition, respectively, which offers a parsimonious explanation for the hyperarousal hypothesis in the level of the whole-brain functional connectivity in patients with insomnia.

KEYWORDS:

functional connectivity; hyperarousal hypothesis; primary insomnia; resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging; whole brain

Conflict of interest statement

Disclosure The authors report no conflicts of interest in this work.

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