Aberrant brain grey matter volume patterns differ among Chinese Han drug-naïve depression patients with acute and chronic stress
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Ping Guo1,*, Shikai Wang1,*, Ce Chen3,*, Hongjun Tian2, Jie Li2, Weifang Zheng3 and Mincai Qian1
1Department of Psychological Medicine, Huzhou Third People’s Hospital, Huzhou, China
2Department of Psychological Medicine, Tianjin Anding Hospital, Tianjin, China
3Department of Psychological Medicine, Wenzhou Seventh People’s Hospital, Wenzhou, China
*These authors contributed equally to this work
Mincai Qian, email: [email protected]
Weifang Zheng, email: [email protected]
Keywords: depression, stress, grey matter volume, aberrant pattern
Received: June 08, 2017 Accepted: August 26, 2017 Published: September 16, 2017
Chronic or acute stress can induce structural changes and brain alterations associated with the neural mechanisms of depression. Aimed to investigate the GMV alterations in the drug-naïve depression patients with chronic and acute stress experience,we enrolled fifty depression patients with acute stress experience, fifty five depression patients with chronic stress experience and forty seven healthy controls(HC) to participant in the present study. We used voxel-based morphometry to analyze the brain grey matter volume (GMV) alterations. Compared with the HC, the patients with acute stress and those with chronic stress exhibited a distinct GMV impairment pattern. Widespread, decreased GMV was detected in most of the cerebral cortex in all the depression patients. Importantly, the greatest finding in our study is that the decreased GMV in the depression patients with chronic stress was more widespread than that in the patients with acute stress. All brain regions with decreased GMV participated in the regulation of emotions, memory, and executive function processing, which is consistent with previous findings. There was no significant difference between the major depression disorder patients with acute stressful life events and those with chronic stressful life events, and this finding largely weakens the support of our current conclusion. Thus, we cannot confirm this postulation. However, our findings probably indicate that GMV may be more sensitive to major depression disorder patients when compared to healthy controls, it did not sensitive when in the comparison of patient's group. Overall, our findings provide important information for the use of appropriate treatment methods to address acute stress and alleviate chronic stress in patients with depression, and such treatments can delay the deterioration of the affected brain regions and improve remission rates. More importantly, all the inexplicable findings in the present study encourage us to conduct a follow-up study to describe the developmental trajectory of the pathological brain features of depression patients and explore therapeutic targets for future personalized treatment.
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