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Brain structure abnormalities in early-onset and adolescent-onset conduct disorder

Brain structure abnormalities in early-onset and adolescent-onset conduct disorder
Brain structure abnormalities in early-onset and adolescent-onset conduct disorder
Objective: the developmental taxonomic theory proposes that neurodevelopmental factors play a critical role in the etiology of early-onset conduct disorder, whereas adolescent-onset conduct disorder arises as a result of social mimicry of deviant peers. Recent studies have challenged this theory by demonstrating that adolescents with both early- and adolescent-onset forms of conduct disorder show impaired emotional learning and abnormal neural activation during facial expression processing. The present study extends this work by investigating brain structure in both subtypes of conduct disorder.

Method: voxel-based morphometry was used to compare gray matter volumes in four regions of interest (amygdala, insula, anterior cingulate, and orbitofrontal cortex) in male adolescents with early-onset (N=36) or adolescent-onset (N=27) conduct disorder and in healthy comparison subjects (N=27). Whole-brain structural analyses were also performed.

Results: the combined conduct disorder group displayed gray matter volume reductions in the bilateral amygdala, extending into the insula, relative to healthy comparison subjects. Separate comparisons between healthy subjects and each conduct disorder subgroup revealed lower amygdala volume in both subgroups and reduced right insula volume in the adolescent-onset subgroup. Regression analyses within the conduct disorder subjects alone demonstrated a negative correlation between conduct disorder symptoms and right insula volume.

Conclusions: the results demonstrate that gray matter volume reductions in brain regions involved in processing socioemotional stimuli are associated with conduct disorder, regardless of age of onset. Brain structural abnormalities may contribute to the emergence of adolescent-onset as well as early-onset conduct disorder
1535-7228
624-633
Fairchild, Graeme
f99bc911-978e-48c2-9754-c6460666a95f
Passamonti, Luca
71e1cf10-463b-45f0-acc2-0d74459d9f20
Hurford, Georgina
c821b5c8-ff46-4ba7-a1c3-2b3d2f5dffe6
Hagan, Cindy
b6dd6664-a926-4fe8-afce-5dcf8335ac5d
von dem Hagen, Elisabeth
49fd73aa-2ed2-4609-9778-56f5c2e6a557
van Goozen, Stephanie
0941756d-ee37-4fb6-a9f4-1e0c01dc367b
Goodyer, Ian
d8750313-5d41-4f80-8f47-c90007cbf469
Calder, Andrew
4981a9bf-43f0-484a-8dfd-e8d8981de0d8
Fairchild, Graeme
f99bc911-978e-48c2-9754-c6460666a95f
Passamonti, Luca
71e1cf10-463b-45f0-acc2-0d74459d9f20
Hurford, Georgina
c821b5c8-ff46-4ba7-a1c3-2b3d2f5dffe6
Hagan, Cindy
b6dd6664-a926-4fe8-afce-5dcf8335ac5d
von dem Hagen, Elisabeth
49fd73aa-2ed2-4609-9778-56f5c2e6a557
van Goozen, Stephanie
0941756d-ee37-4fb6-a9f4-1e0c01dc367b
Goodyer, Ian
d8750313-5d41-4f80-8f47-c90007cbf469
Calder, Andrew
4981a9bf-43f0-484a-8dfd-e8d8981de0d8

Fairchild, Graeme, Passamonti, Luca, Hurford, Georgina, Hagan, Cindy, von dem Hagen, Elisabeth, van Goozen, Stephanie, Goodyer, Ian and Calder, Andrew (2011) Brain structure abnormalities in early-onset and adolescent-onset conduct disorder. American Journal of Psychiatry, 168, 624-633. (doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2010.10081184). (PMID:21454920)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Objective: the developmental taxonomic theory proposes that neurodevelopmental factors play a critical role in the etiology of early-onset conduct disorder, whereas adolescent-onset conduct disorder arises as a result of social mimicry of deviant peers. Recent studies have challenged this theory by demonstrating that adolescents with both early- and adolescent-onset forms of conduct disorder show impaired emotional learning and abnormal neural activation during facial expression processing. The present study extends this work by investigating brain structure in both subtypes of conduct disorder.

Method: voxel-based morphometry was used to compare gray matter volumes in four regions of interest (amygdala, insula, anterior cingulate, and orbitofrontal cortex) in male adolescents with early-onset (N=36) or adolescent-onset (N=27) conduct disorder and in healthy comparison subjects (N=27). Whole-brain structural analyses were also performed.

Results: the combined conduct disorder group displayed gray matter volume reductions in the bilateral amygdala, extending into the insula, relative to healthy comparison subjects. Separate comparisons between healthy subjects and each conduct disorder subgroup revealed lower amygdala volume in both subgroups and reduced right insula volume in the adolescent-onset subgroup. Regression analyses within the conduct disorder subjects alone demonstrated a negative correlation between conduct disorder symptoms and right insula volume.

Conclusions: the results demonstrate that gray matter volume reductions in brain regions involved in processing socioemotional stimuli are associated with conduct disorder, regardless of age of onset. Brain structural abnormalities may contribute to the emergence of adolescent-onset as well as early-onset conduct disorder

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 31 March 2011
Published date: 2011
Organisations: Psychology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 179951
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/179951
ISSN: 1535-7228
PURE UUID: 21558807-a395-4d40-a3b6-754007c20341
ORCID for Graeme Fairchild: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7814-9938

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Date deposited: 05 Apr 2011 08:22
Last modified: 14 Oct 2019 19:19

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Contributors

Author: Graeme Fairchild ORCID iD
Author: Luca Passamonti
Author: Georgina Hurford
Author: Cindy Hagan
Author: Elisabeth von dem Hagen
Author: Stephanie van Goozen
Author: Ian Goodyer
Author: Andrew Calder

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