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Journal Articles Journal of Psychiatric Research Year : 2023

Apathy in depression: An arterial spin labeling perfusion MRI study

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Christian Barillot


Introduction Apathy, as defined as a deficit in goal-directed behaviors, is a critical clinical dimension in depression associated with chronic impairment. Little is known about its cerebral perfusion specificities in depression. To explore neurovascular mechanisms underpinning apathy in depression by pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling (pCASL) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Methods Perfusion imaging analysis was performed on 90 depressed patients included in a prospective study between November 2014 and February 2017. Imaging data included anatomical 3D T1-weighted and perfusion pCASL sequences. A multiple regression analysis relating the quantified cerebral blood flow (CBF) in different regions of interest defined from the FreeSurfer atlas, to the Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES) total score was conducted. Results After confound adjustment (demographics, disease and clinical characteristics) and correction for multiple comparisons, we observed a strong negative relationship between the CBF in the left anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the AES score (standardized beta = −0.74, corrected p value = 0.0008). Conclusion Our results emphasized the left ACC as a key region involved in apathy severity in a population of depressed participants. Perfusion correlates of apathy in depression evidenced in this study may contribute to characterize different phenotypes of depression.
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Dates and versions

inserm-03866929 , version 1 (23-11-2022)



Jean-Marie Batail, Isabelle Corouge, Benoit Combès, Camille Conan, Muriel Guillery-Sollier, et al.. Apathy in depression: An arterial spin labeling perfusion MRI study. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 2023, 157, pp.7-16. ⟨10.1016/j.jpsychires.2022.11.015⟩. ⟨inserm-03866929⟩
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