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Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and functional connectivity density mapping in patients with corneal ulcer

Authors Zhu F, Tang L, Zhu P, Lin Q, Yuan Q, Shi W, Li B, Ye L, Min Y, Su T, Shao Y

Received 30 March 2019

Accepted for publication 10 June 2019

Published 5 July 2019 Volume 2019:15 Pages 1833—1844


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Yuping Ning

Feiyin Zhu,1,2,* Liying Tang,3,4,5,6,* Peiwen Zhu,1 Qi Lin,1 Qing Yuan,1 Wenqing Shi,1 Biao Li,1 Lei Ye,1 Youlan Min,1 Ting Su,3–6 Yi Shao1

1Department of Ophthalmology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Jiangxi Province Clinical Ophthalmology Institute, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Clinical Medicine, Queen Mary College of Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330031, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Ophthalmology, Xiang’an Hospital of Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian 361102, People’s Republic of China; 4Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Ophthalmology and Visual Science, Xiamen, Fujian 361102, People’s Republic of China; 5Eye Institute of Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian 361102, People’s Republic of China; 6School of Medicine, Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian 361102, People’s Republic of China

*These authors have contributed equally to this work

Purpose: To investigate alternations in spontaneous brain activities reflected by functional connectivity density (FCD) in patients with corneal ulcer (CU) using resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC).
Methods: We recruited 24 patients with CU (12 males, 12 females), and 24 healthy controls (HCs; 12 males, 12 females) matched for age, gender and education status. Functional magnetic resonance imaging examinations were performed on all subjects in a resting state and the following parameters determined: rsFC, long-range FCD (longFCD) and short-range FCD (IFCD). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were then used to differentiate patients with CU from HCs.
Results: Compared with HCs, CU patients showed significantly reduced rsFC values in the right cerebellum posterior lobe gyrus, right middle frontal gyrus/inferior frontal gyrus/superior frontal gyrus and left inferior parietal lobule/precuneus. Significantly reduced longFCD values were found in the right hippocampus/inferior temporal gyrus and the left inferior temporal gyrus. Moreover, compared with HCs, IFCD values were significantly reduced in the left inferior temporal gyrus/middle temporal gyrus, left limbic lobe/medial frontal gyrus, and left precuneus/limbic lobe, but were significantly increased in the right insula/superior temporal gyrus, left superior temporal gyrus/inferior frontal gyrus/insula, right superior temporal gyrus/postcentral gyrus, and left precentral gyrus.
Conclusions: Patients with CU exhibited alterations in spontaneous brain activities in several brain areas. These novel findings may help to reveal the neuropathological mechanisms underlying CU.This study provides a direction for further exploration of underlying neural mechanisms of CU and facilitate the clinical diagnosis and treatment of CU.

Keywords: functional connectivity density, corneal ulcer, spontaneous brain activities

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