Background: COVID-19 is an infectious disease that has spread worldwide in 2020, causing a severe pandemic. In addition to respiratory symptoms, neuropsychiatric manifestations are commonly observed, including chronic fatigue, depression, and anxiety. The neural correlates of neuropsychiatric symptoms in COVID-19 are still largely unknown.Methods: A total of 79 patients with COVID-19 (COV) and 17 healthy controls (HC) underwent 3 T functional magnetic resonance imaging at rest, as well as structural imaging. Regional homogeneity (ReHo) was calculated. We also measured depressive symptoms with the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), anxiety using the General Anxiety Disorder 7-item scale, and fatigue with the Multidimension Fatigue Inventory.Results: In comparison with HC, COV showed significantly higher depressive scores. Moreover, COV presented reduced ReHo in the left angular gyrus, the right superior/middle temporal gyrus and the left inferior temporal gyrus, and higher ReHo in the right hippocampus. No differences in gray matter were detected in these areas. Furthermore, we observed a negative correlation between ReHo in the left angular gyrus and PHQ-9 scores and a trend toward a positive correlation between ReHo in the right hippocampus and PHQ-9 scores.Limitations: Heterogeneity in the clinical presentation in COV, the different timing from the first positive molecular swab test to the MRI, and the cross-sectional design of the study limit the generalizability of our findings. Conclusions: Our results suggest that COVID-19 infection may contribute to depressive symptoms via a modulation of local functional connectivity in cortico-limbic circuits.

Altered brain regional homogeneity is associated with depressive symptoms in COVID-19

Cattarinussi, Giulia;Miola, Alessandro;Trevisan, Nicolò;Valeggia, Silvia;Tramarin, Elena;Mucignat, Carla;Morra, Francesco;Minerva, Matteo;Librizzi, Giovanni;Bordin, Anna;Causin, Francesco;Ottaviano, Giancarlo;Antonini, Angelo;Sambataro, Fabio
;
Manara, Renzo
2022

Abstract

Background: COVID-19 is an infectious disease that has spread worldwide in 2020, causing a severe pandemic. In addition to respiratory symptoms, neuropsychiatric manifestations are commonly observed, including chronic fatigue, depression, and anxiety. The neural correlates of neuropsychiatric symptoms in COVID-19 are still largely unknown.Methods: A total of 79 patients with COVID-19 (COV) and 17 healthy controls (HC) underwent 3 T functional magnetic resonance imaging at rest, as well as structural imaging. Regional homogeneity (ReHo) was calculated. We also measured depressive symptoms with the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), anxiety using the General Anxiety Disorder 7-item scale, and fatigue with the Multidimension Fatigue Inventory.Results: In comparison with HC, COV showed significantly higher depressive scores. Moreover, COV presented reduced ReHo in the left angular gyrus, the right superior/middle temporal gyrus and the left inferior temporal gyrus, and higher ReHo in the right hippocampus. No differences in gray matter were detected in these areas. Furthermore, we observed a negative correlation between ReHo in the left angular gyrus and PHQ-9 scores and a trend toward a positive correlation between ReHo in the right hippocampus and PHQ-9 scores.Limitations: Heterogeneity in the clinical presentation in COV, the different timing from the first positive molecular swab test to the MRI, and the cross-sectional design of the study limit the generalizability of our findings. Conclusions: Our results suggest that COVID-19 infection may contribute to depressive symptoms via a modulation of local functional connectivity in cortico-limbic circuits.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3458002
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