Genetic influences on brain asymmetry: A DTI study of 374 twins and siblings

Jahanshad, Neda, Lee, Agatha D., Barysheva, Marina, McMahon, Katie L., de Zubicaray, Greig I., Martin, Nicholas G., Wright, Margaret J., Toga, Arthur W. and Thompson, Paul M. (2010) Genetic influences on brain asymmetry: A DTI study of 374 twins and siblings. NeuroImage, 52 2: 455-469. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.04.236

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Author Jahanshad, Neda
Lee, Agatha D.
Barysheva, Marina
McMahon, Katie L.
de Zubicaray, Greig I.
Martin, Nicholas G.
Wright, Margaret J.
Toga, Arthur W.
Thompson, Paul M.
Title Genetic influences on brain asymmetry: A DTI study of 374 twins and siblings
Journal name NeuroImage   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1053-8119
1095-9572
Publication date 2010-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.04.236
Volume 52
Issue 2
Start page 455
End page 469
Total pages 15
Place of publication Maryland Heights, MO, United States
Publisher Academic Press
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Brain asymmetry, or the structural and functional specialization of each brain hemisphere, has fascinated neuroscientists for over a century. Even so, genetic and environmental factors that influence brain asymmetry are largely unknown. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) now allows asymmetry to be studied at a microscopic scale by examining differences in fiber characteristics across hemispheres rather than differences in structure shapes and volumes. Here we analyzed 4. Tesla DTI scans from 374 healthy adults, including 60 monozygotic twin pairs, 45 same-sex dizygotic pairs, and 164 mixed-sex DZ twins and their siblings; mean age: 24.4 years ± 1.9 SD). All DTI scans were nonlinearly aligned to a geometrically-symmetric, population-based image template. We computed voxel-wise maps of significant asymmetries (left/right differences) for common diffusion measures that reflect fiber integrity (fractional and geodesic anisotropy; FA, GA and mean diffusivity, MD). In quantitative genetic models computed from all same-sex twin pairs (N=210 subjects), genetic factors accounted for 33% of the variance in asymmetry for the inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus, 37% for the anterior thalamic radiation, and 20% for the forceps major and uncinate fasciculus (all L > R). Shared environmental factors accounted for around 15% of the variance in asymmetry for the cortico-spinal tract (R > L) and about 10% for the forceps minor (L > R). Sex differences in asymmetry (men > women) were significant, and were greatest in regions with prominent FA asymmetries. These maps identify heritable DTI-derived features, and may empower genome-wide searches for genetic polymorphisms that influence brain asymmetry. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.
Keyword DTI
Brain asymmetry
Fractional anisotropy
Geodesic anisotropy
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
School of Psychology Publications
Centre for Advanced Imaging Publications
 
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Created: Sun, 11 Jul 2010, 00:02:12 EST