Structural Connectivity of the Developing Human Amygdala
Author(s)Saygin, Zeynep M.; Osher, David E.; Koldewyn, Kami; Martin, Rebecca E.; Saxe, Rebecca; Sheridan, Margaret; Finn, Amy Sue; Gabrieli, John D. E.; ... Show more Show less
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A large corpus of research suggests that there are changes in the manner and degree to which the amygdala supports cognitive and emotional function across development. One possible basis for these developmental differences could be the maturation of amygdalar connections with the rest of the brain. Recent functional connectivity studies support this conclusion, but the structural connectivity of the developing amygdala and its different nuclei remains largely unstudied. We examined age related changes in the DWI connectivity fingerprints of the amygdala to the rest of the brain in 166 individuals of ages 5-30. We also developed a model to predict age based on individual-subject amygdala connectivity, and identified the connections that were most predictive of age. Finally, we segmented the amygdala into its four main nucleus groups, and examined the developmental changes in connectivity for each nucleus. We observed that with age, amygdalar connectivity becomes increasingly sparse and localized. Age related changes were largely localized to the subregions of the amygdala that are implicated in social inference and contextual memory (the basal and lateral nuclei). The central nucleus’ connectivity also showed differences with age but these differences affected fewer target regions than the basal and lateral nuclei. The medial nucleus did not exhibit any age related changes. These findings demonstrate increasing specificity in the connectivity patterns of amygdalar nuclei across age.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences; McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT
Public Library of Science
Saygin, Zeynep M., David E. Osher, Kami Koldewyn, Rebecca E. Martin, Amy Finn, Rebecca Saxe, John D.E. Gabrieli, and Margaret Sheridan. “Structural Connectivity of the Developing Human Amygdala.” Edited by Juan Zhou. PLOS ONE 10, no. 4 (April 15, 2015): e0125170.
Final published version