Default mode network connectivity as a predictor of post-traumatic stress disorder symptom severity in acutely traumatized subjects

Authors


Ruth A Lanius, MD, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, London Health Sciences Centre – University Campus, 339 Windermere Rd., Rm. A10-228, London, N6A 5A5 ON, Canada. E-mail: ruth.lanius@lhsc.on.ca

Abstract

Objective:  The goal of this study was to investigate the relationship between default mode network connectivity and the severity of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in a sample of eleven acutely traumatized subjects.

Method:  Participants underwent a 5.5 min resting functional magnetic resonance imaging scan. Brain areas whose activity positively correlated with that of the posterior cingulate/precuneus (PCC) were assessed. To assess the relationship between severity of PTSD symptoms and PCC connectivity, the contrast image representing areas positively correlated with the PCC was correlated with the subjects’ Clinician Administered PTSD Scale scores.

Results:  Results suggest that resting state connectivity of the PCC with the perigenual anterior cingulate and the right amygdala is associated with current PTSD symptoms and that correlation with the right amygdala predicts future PTSD symptoms.

Conclusion:  These results may contribute to the development of prognostic tools to distinguish between those who will and those who will not develop PTSD.

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