Fengmei Fan and Chaozhe Zhu contributed equally to this work.
Dynamic brain structural changes after left hemisphere subcortical stroke
Article first published online: 19 MAR 2012
Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Human Brain Mapping
Volume 34, Issue 8, pages 1872–1881, August 2013
How to Cite
Fan, F., Zhu, C., Chen, H., Qin, W., Ji, X., Wang, L., Zhang, Y., Zhu, L. and Yu, C. (2013), Dynamic brain structural changes after left hemisphere subcortical stroke. Hum. Brain Mapp., 34: 1872–1881. doi: 10.1002/hbm.22034
- Issue published online: 8 JUL 2013
- Article first published online: 19 MAR 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 6 DEC 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 DEC 2011
- Manuscript Received: 21 APR 2011
- National Key Basic Research and Development Program (973). Grant Number: 2011CB707804
- Natural Science Foundation of China. Grant Number: 30970773
- Open Project Program of the State Key Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning
- ischemic stroke;
- post-stroke recovery;
- volumetric MRI;
- motor cortex
This study aimed to quantify dynamic structural changes in the brain after subcortical stroke and identify brain areas that contribute to motor recovery of affected limbs. High-resolution structural MRI and neurological examinations were conducted at five consecutive time points during the year following stroke in 10 patients with left hemisphere subcortical infarctions involving motor pathways. Gray matter volume (GMV) was calculated using an optimized voxel-based morphometry technique, and dynamic changes in GMV were evaluated using a mixed-effects model. After stroke, GMV was decreased bilaterally in brain areas that directly or indirectly connected with lesions, which suggests the presence of regional damage in these “healthy” brain tissues in stroke patients. Moreover, the GMVs of these brain areas were not correlated with the Motricity Index (MI) scores when controlling for time intervals after stroke, which indicates that these structural changes may reflect an independent process (such as axonal degeneration) but cannot affect the improvement of motor function. In contrast, the GMV was increased in several brain areas associated with motor and cognitive functions after stroke. When controlling for time intervals after stroke, only the GMVs in the cognitive-related brain areas (hippocampus and precuneus) were positively correlated with MI scores, which suggests that the structural reorganization in cognitive-related brain areas may facilitate the recovery of motor function. However, considering the small sample size of this study, further studies are needed to clarify the exact relationships between structural changes and recovery of motor function in stroke patients. Hum Brain Mapp, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.