Cortical thickness development of human primary visual cortex related to the age of blindness onset

Li, Qiaojun, Song, Ming, Xu, Jiayuan, Qin, Wen, Yu, Chunshui and Jiang, Tianzi (2016) Cortical thickness development of human primary visual cortex related to the age of blindness onset. Brain Imaging and Behavior, 11 4: 1-8. doi:10.1007/s11682-016-9576-8


Author Li, Qiaojun
Song, Ming
Xu, Jiayuan
Qin, Wen
Yu, Chunshui
Jiang, Tianzi
Title Cortical thickness development of human primary visual cortex related to the age of blindness onset
Journal name Brain Imaging and Behavior   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1931-7565
1931-7557
Publication date 2016-07-28
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s11682-016-9576-8
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 11
Issue 4
Start page 1
End page 8
Total pages 8
Place of publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Springer New York LLC
Language eng
Subject 2741 Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
2808 Neurology
2805 Cognitive Neuroscience
2728 Clinical Neurology
2804 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
2738 Psychiatry and Mental health
2802 Behavioral Neuroscience
Abstract Blindness primarily induces structural alteration in the primary visual cortex (V1). Some studies have found that the early blind subjects had a thicker V1 compared to sighted controls, whereas late blind subjects showed no significant differences in the V1. This implies that the age of blindness onset may exert significant effects on the development of cortical thickness of the V1. However, no previous research used a trajectory of the age of blindness onset-related changes to investigate these effects. Here we explored this issue by mapping the cortical thickness trajectory of the V1 against the age of blindness onset using data from 99 blind individuals whose age of blindness onset ranged from birth to 34 years. We found that the cortical thickness of the V1 could be fitted well with a quadratic curve in both the left (F = 11.59, P = 3 × 10) and right hemispheres (F = 6.54, P = 2 × 10). Specifically, the cortical thickness of the V1 thinned rapidly during childhood and adolescence and did not change significantly thereafter. This trend was not observed in the primary auditory cortex (A1), primary motor cortex (M1), or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). These results provide evidence that an onset of blindness before adulthood significantly affects the cortical thickness of the V1 and suggest a critical period for cortical development of the human V1.
Formatted abstract
Blindness primarily induces structural alteration in the primary visual cortex (V1). Some studies have found that the early blind subjects had a thicker V1 compared to sighted controls, whereas late blind subjects showed no significant differences in the V1. This implies that the age of blindness onset may exert significant effects on the development of cortical thickness of the V1. However, no previous research used a trajectory of the age of blindness onset-related changes to investigate these effects. Here we explored this issue by mapping the cortical thickness trajectory of the V1 against the age of blindness onset using data from 99 blind individuals whose age of blindness onset ranged from birth to 34 years. We found that the cortical thickness of the V1 could be fitted well with a quadratic curve in both the left (F = 11.59, P = 3 × 10−5) and right hemispheres (F = 6.54, P = 2 × 10−3). Specifically, the cortical thickness of the V1 thinned rapidly during childhood and adolescence and did not change significantly thereafter. This trend was not observed in the primary auditory cortex (A1), primary motor cortex (M1), or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). These results provide evidence that an onset of blindness before adulthood significantly affects the cortical thickness of the V1 and suggest a critical period for cortical development of the human V1.
Keyword Adolescence
Age of blindness onset
Blindness
Cortical thickness
Primary visual cortex
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID 81101040
91132301
91432302
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
Queensland Brain Institute Publications
 
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