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Biol Psychiatry. 2005 Jan 1;57(1):83-90.

Direct and indirect effects of fetal irradiation on cortical gray and white matter volume in the macaque.

Author information

1
Department of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, PO Box 208001, New Haven, CT 06520-8001, USA. ldselemon@aol.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Schizophrenia is associated with reductions in thalamic neuronal number and cortical gray matter volume. Exposure of nonhuman primates to x-irradiation in early gestation has previously been shown to decrease thalamic volume and neuronal number. Here we examine whether early gestational irradiation also results in cortical volume reduction.

METHODS:

High-resolution, T1-weighted magnetic resonance scans were collected in adult monkeys 1) exposed to irradiation during the early gestational period (E33-E42) corresponding to thalamic neurogenesis, 2) irradiated in midgestation (E70-81) during neocortical neurogenesis, and 3) not exposed to irradiation. Cortical gray matter and white matter volumes were derived via manual segmentation; frontal and nonfrontal volumes were distinguished via sulcal landmarks.

RESULTS:

Monkeys irradiated in early gestation exhibited a trend reduction in nonfrontal gray matter volume (17%) and significant reductions in white matter volume in frontal (26%) and nonfrontal (36%) lobes. Monkeys irradiated in midgestation had smaller gray (frontal: 28%; nonfrontal: 22%) and white matter (frontal: 29%; nonfrontal: 38%) volumes.

CONCLUSIONS:

The cortical deficits observed in midgestationally irradiated monkeys are consistent with a reduction in cortical neuronal number. Cortical volume reductions following early gestational irradiation may be secondary to reduced thalamic neuronal number and therefore model the thalamocortical pathology of schizophrenia.

PMID:
15607304
PMCID:
PMC4465560
DOI:
10.1016/j.biopsych.2004.10.014
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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