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Author: Eva Loth (45)


Jan
2018

An expert review of the aetiology, assessment, and treatment of autism spectrum disorder, and recommendations for diagnosis, management and service provision was coordinated by the British Association for Psychopharmacology, and evidence graded. The aetiology of autism spectrum disorder involves genetic and environmental contributions, and implicates a number of brain systems, in particular the gamma-aminobutyric acid, serotonergic and glutamatergic systems. The presentation of autism spectrum disorder varies widely and co-occurring health problems (in particular epilepsy, sleep disorders, anxiety, depression, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and irritability) are common.

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Dec
2017

Neurodevelopmental disorders such as fragile X syndrome (FXS) result in lifelong cognitive and behavioural deficits and represent a major public health burden. FXS is the most frequent monogenic form of intellectual disability and autism, and the underlying pathophysiology linked to its causal gene, FMR1, has been the focus of intense research. Key alterations in synaptic function thought to underlie this neurodevelopmental disorder have been characterized and rescued in animal models of FXS using genetic and pharmacological approaches.

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Dec
1969

The EU-AIMS Longitudinal European Autism Project (LEAP) is to date the largest multi-centre, multi-disciplinary observational study on biomarkers for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The current paper describes the clinical characteristics of the LEAP cohort and examines age, sex and IQ differences in ASD core symptoms and common co-occurring psychiatric symptoms. A companion paper describes the overall design and experimental protocol and outlines the strategy to identify stratification biomarkers.

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Dec
1969

The tremendous clinical and aetiological diversity among individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been a major obstacle to the development of new treatments, as many may only be effective in particular subgroups. Precision medicine approaches aim to overcome this challenge by combining pathophysiologically based treatments with stratification biomarkers that predict which treatment may be most beneficial for particular individuals. However, so far, we have no single validated stratification biomarker for ASD.

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Dec
1969

The authors sought to explore how conduct, hyperactivity/inattention, and emotional symptoms are associated with neural reactivity to social-emotional stimuli, and the extent to which psychosocial stress modulates these relationships.
Participants were community adolescents recruited as part of the European IMAGEN study. Bilateral amygdala regions of interest were used to assess the relationship between the three symptom domains and functional MRI neural reactivity during passive viewing of dynamic angry and neutral facial expressions.

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Dec
1969

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong heterogeneous neurodevelopmental condition that is associated with differences in brain anatomy and connectivity. Yet, the molecular and cellular mechanisms that underpin the atypical developmental of the brain in ASD remain poorly understood. Here, we review the findings of in vivo neuroimaging studies examining the time course of atypical brain development in ASD and relate the different neurodevelopmental stages that are atypical in ASD to the known neurobiological mechanisms that drive the maturation of the typically developing brain.

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Jan
2017

Restricted and repetitive behaviors (RRBs) are a heterogeneous set of behaviors common across a wide range of neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) and neuropsychiatric disorders (NPDs) that extend well into the general population. This study introduces 2 dimensional measurements of RRBs for use in typical and clinical populations from infancy to adulthood.
The Childhood Routines Inventory-Revised (CRI-R) and the Adult Routines Inventory (ARI) were created and administered online to a nationally representative cohort of 3,108 parents with 3,032 children (range 12 months to 17 years 11 months).

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Dec
1969

The tremendous clinical and etiological variability between individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has made precision medicine the most promising treatment approach. It aims to combine new pathophysiologically based treatments with objective tests (stratification biomarkers) to predict which treatment may be beneficial for a particular person. Here we discuss significant advances and current challenges for this approach: rare monogenic forms of ASD have provided a major breakthrough for the identification of treatment targets by providing a means to trace causal links from a gene to specific molecular alterations and biological pathways.

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Apr
2016

The mesolimbic dopamine system, composed primarily of dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area that project to striatal structures, is considered to be the key mediator of reinforcement-related mechanisms in the brain. Prompted by a genome-wide association meta-analysis implicating the Ras-specific guanine nucleotide-releasing factor 2 (RASGRF2) gene in the regulation of alcohol intake in men, we have recently shown that male Rasgrf2(-/-) mice exhibit reduced ethanol intake and preference accompanied by a perturbed mesolimbic dopamine system. We therefore propose that these mice represent a valid model to further elucidate the precise genes and mechanisms regulating mesolimbic dopamine functioning.

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Oct
2015

Neuroimaging findings have been reported in regions of the brain associated with emotion in both adults and adolescents with depression, but few studies have investigated whether such brain alterations can be detected in adolescents with subthreshold depression, a condition at risk for major depressive disorder. In this study, we searched for differences in brain structure at age 14 years in adolescents with subthreshold depression and their relation to depression at age 16 years.
High-resolution structural magnetic resonance imaging was used to assess adolescents with self-reported subthreshold depression (n = 119) and healthy control adolescents (n = 461), all recruited from a community-based sample.

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Nov
2014


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Feb
2016

Recruitment of 'top-down' frontal attentional mechanisms is held to support detection of changes in task-relevant stimuli. Fluctuations in intrinsic frontal activity have been shown to impact task performance more generally. Meanwhile, the amygdala has been implicated in 'bottom-up' attentional capture by threat.

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May
2015

Multi-subject datasets used in neuroimaging group studies have a complex structure, as they exhibit non-stationary statistical properties across regions and display various artifacts. While studies with small sample sizes can rarely be shown to deviate from standard hypotheses (such as the normality of the residuals) due to the poor sensitivity of normality tests with low degrees of freedom, large-scale studies (e.g.

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Nov
2014

We have made little recent progress developing effective new treatments for neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders. Novel molecular mechanisms have been identified, but have not translated into the clinic. We suggest an alternative: combinations of treatments targeting different aspects of final common pathways in biologically defined clinical subgroups.

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Aug
2014

Face expressions are a rich source of social signals. Here we estimated the proportion of phenotypic variance in the brain response to facial expressions explained by common genetic variance captured by ∼ 500,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms. Using genomic-relationship-matrix restricted maximum likelihood (GREML), we related this global genetic variance to that in the brain response to facial expressions, as assessed with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a community-based sample of adolescents (n = 1,620).

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May
2015

Individuals with alcohol-dependent parents show an elevated risk of developing alcohol-related problems themselves. Modulations of the mesolimbic reward circuit have been postulated as a pre-existing marker of alcoholism. We tested whether a positive family history of alcoholism is correlated with ventral striatum functionality during a reward task.

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Oct
2014

Catecholamine-0-methyl-transferase (COMT) gene variation effects on prefrontal blood oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) activation are robust; however, despite observations that COMT is estrogenically catabolized, sex differences in its prefrontal repercussions remain unclear. Here, in a large sample of healthy adolescents stratified by sex and Val(158)Met genotype (n=1133), we examine BOLD responses during performance of the stop-signal task in right-hemispheric prefrontal regions fundamental to inhibitory control. A significant sex-by-genotype interaction was observed in pre-SMA during successful-inhibition trials and in both pre-SMA and inferior frontal cortex during failed-inhibition trials with Val homozygotes displaying elevated activation compared with other genotypes in males but not in females.

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Dec
1969

Playing video games is a common recreational activity of adolescents. Recent research associated frequent video game playing with improvements in cognitive functions. Improvements in cognition have been related to grey matter changes in prefrontal cortex.

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Jun
2014

The ENIGMA Consortium: large-scale collaborative analyses of neuroimaging and genetic data.

Brain Imaging Behav 2014 Jun;8(2):153-82
Paul M Thompson, Jason L Stein, Sarah E Medland, Derrek P Hibar, Alejandro Arias Vasquez, Miguel E Renteria, Roberto Toro, Neda Jahanshad, Gunter Schumann, Barbara Franke, Margaret J Wright, Nicholas G Martin, Ingrid Agartz, Martin Alda, Saud Alhusaini, Laura Almasy, Jorge Almeida, Kathryn Alpert, Nancy C Andreasen, Ole A Andreassen, Liana G Apostolova, Katja Appel, Nicola J Armstrong, Benjamin Aribisala, Mark E Bastin, Michael Bauer, Carrie E Bearden, Orjan Bergmann, Elisabeth B Binder, John Blangero, Henry J Bockholt, Erlend Bøen, Catherine Bois, Dorret I Boomsma, Tom Booth, Ian J Bowman, Janita Bralten, Rachel M Brouwer, Han G Brunner, David G Brohawn, Randy L Buckner, Jan Buitelaar, Kazima Bulayeva, Juan R Bustillo, Vince D Calhoun, Dara M Cannon, Rita M Cantor, Melanie A Carless, Xavier Caseras, Gianpiero L Cavalleri, M Mallar Chakravarty, Kiki D Chang, Christopher R K Ching, Andrea Christoforou, Sven Cichon, Vincent P Clark, Patricia Conrod, Giovanni Coppola, Benedicto Crespo-Facorro, Joanne E Curran, Michael Czisch, Ian J Deary, Eco J C de Geus, Anouk den Braber, Giuseppe Delvecchio, Chantal Depondt, Lieuwe de Haan, Greig I de Zubicaray, Danai Dima, Rali Dimitrova, Srdjan Djurovic, Hongwei Dong, Gary Donohoe, Ravindranath Duggirala, Thomas D Dyer, Stefan Ehrlich, Carl Johan Ekman, Torbjørn Elvsåshagen, Louise Emsell, Susanne Erk, Thomas Espeseth, Jesen Fagerness, Scott Fears, Iryna Fedko, Guillén Fernández, Simon E Fisher, Tatiana Foroud, Peter T Fox, Clyde Francks, Sophia Frangou, Eva Maria Frey, Thomas Frodl, Vincent Frouin, Hugh Garavan, Sudheer Giddaluru, David C Glahn, Beata Godlewska, Rita Z Goldstein, Randy L Gollub, Hans J Grabe, Oliver Grimm, Oliver Gruber, Tulio Guadalupe, Raquel E Gur, Ruben C Gur, Harald H H Göring, Saskia Hagenaars, Tomas Hajek, Geoffrey B Hall, Jeremy Hall, John Hardy, Catharina A Hartman, Johanna Hass, Sean N Hatton, Unn K Haukvik, Katrin Hegenscheid, Andreas Heinz, Ian B Hickie, Beng-Choon Ho, David Hoehn, Pieter J Hoekstra, Marisa Hollinshead, Avram J Holmes, Georg Homuth, Martine Hoogman, L Elliot Hong, Norbert Hosten, Jouke-Jan Hottenga, Hilleke E Hulshoff Pol, Kristy S Hwang, Clifford R Jack, Mark Jenkinson, Caroline Johnston, Erik G Jönsson, René S Kahn, Dalia Kasperaviciute, Sinead Kelly, Sungeun Kim, Peter Kochunov, Laura Koenders, Bernd Krämer, John B J Kwok, Jim Lagopoulos, Gonzalo Laje, Mikael Landen, Bennett A Landman, John Lauriello, Stephen M Lawrie, Phil H Lee, Stephanie Le Hellard, Herve Lemaître, Cassandra D Leonardo, Chiang-Shan Li, Benny Liberg, David C Liewald, Xinmin Liu, Lorna M Lopez, Eva Loth, Anbarasu Lourdusamy, Michelle Luciano, Fabio Macciardi, Marise W J Machielsen, Glenda M Macqueen, Ulrik F Malt, René Mandl, Dara S Manoach, Jean-Luc Martinot, Mar Matarin, Karen A Mather, Manuel Mattheisen, Morten Mattingsdal, Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Colm McDonald, Andrew M McIntosh, Francis J McMahon, Katie L McMahon, Eva Meisenzahl, Ingrid Melle, Yuri Milaneschi, Sebastian Mohnke, Grant W Montgomery, Derek W Morris, Eric K Moses, Bryon A Mueller, Susana Muñoz Maniega, Thomas W Mühleisen, Bertram Müller-Myhsok, Benson Mwangi, Matthias Nauck, Kwangsik Nho, Thomas E Nichols, Lars-Göran Nilsson, Allison C Nugent, Lars Nyberg, Rene L Olvera, Jaap Oosterlaan, Roel A Ophoff, Massimo Pandolfo, Melina Papalampropoulou-Tsiridou, Martina Papmeyer, Tomas Paus, Zdenka Pausova, Godfrey D Pearlson, Brenda W Penninx, Charles P Peterson, Andrea Pfennig, Mary Phillips, G Bruce Pike, Jean-Baptiste Poline, Steven G Potkin, Benno Pütz, Adaikalavan Ramasamy, Jerod Rasmussen, Marcella Rietschel, Mark Rijpkema, Shannon L Risacher, Joshua L Roffman, Roberto Roiz-Santiañez, Nina Romanczuk-Seiferth, Emma J Rose, Natalie A Royle, Dan Rujescu, Mina Ryten, Perminder S Sachdev, Alireza Salami, Theodore D Satterthwaite, Jonathan Savitz, Andrew J Saykin, Cathy Scanlon, Lianne Schmaal, Hugo G Schnack, Andrew J Schork, S Charles Schulz, Remmelt Schür, Larry Seidman, Li Shen, Jody M Shoemaker, Andrew Simmons, Sanjay M Sisodiya, Colin Smith, Jordan W Smoller, Jair C Soares, Scott R Sponheim, Emma Sprooten, John M Starr, Vidar M Steen, Stephen Strakowski, Lachlan Strike, Jessika Sussmann, Philipp G Sämann, Alexander Teumer, Arthur W Toga, Diana Tordesillas-Gutierrez, Daniah Trabzuni, Sarah Trost, Jessica Turner, Martijn Van den Heuvel, Nic J van der Wee, Kristel van Eijk, Theo G M van Erp, Neeltje E M van Haren, Dennis van 't Ent, Marie-Jose van Tol, Maria C Valdés Hernández, Dick J Veltman, Amelia Versace, Henry Völzke, Robert Walker, Henrik Walter, Lei Wang, Joanna M Wardlaw, Michael E Weale, Michael W Weiner, Wei Wen, Lars T Westlye, Heather C Whalley, Christopher D Whelan, Tonya White, Anderson M Winkler, Katharina Wittfeld, Girma Woldehawariat, Christiane Wolf, David Zilles, Marcel P Zwiers, Anbupalam Thalamuthu, Peter R Schofield, Nelson B Freimer, Natalia S Lawrence, Wayne Drevets,
The Enhancing NeuroImaging Genetics through Meta-Analysis (ENIGMA) Consortium is a collaborative network of researchers working together on a range of large-scale studies that integrate data from 70 institutions worldwide. Organized into Working Groups that tackle questions in neuroscience, genetics, and medicine, ENIGMA studies have analyzed neuroimaging data from over 12,826 subjects. In addition, data from 12,171 individuals were provided by the CHARGE consortium for replication of findings, in a total of 24,997 subjects.

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Dec
1969

A compulsivity spectrum has been hypothesized to exist across Obsessive-Compulsive disorder (OCD), Eating Disorders (ED), substance abuse (SA) and binge-drinking (BD). The objective was to examine the validity of this compulsivity spectrum, and differentiate it from an externalizing behaviors dimension, but also to look at hypothesized personality and neural correlates.
A community-sample of adolescents (N=1938; mean age 14.

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Mar
2014

Neuroticism involves a tendency for enhanced emotional and cognitive processing of negative affective stimuli and a propensity to worry and be anxious. It is known that this trait modulates fear learning and the activation of brain regions involved in it such as the amygdala, hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex and their connectivity. Thirty-nine (21 female) 14-year-old healthy adolescents participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of aversive pavlovian differential delay conditioning.

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Sep
2014

Common variants in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) have been shown to influence social and affective behavior and to moderate the effect of adverse experiences on risk for social-affective problems. However, the intermediate neurobiological mechanisms are not fully understood. Although human functional neuroimaging studies have reported that oxytocin effects on social behavior and emotional states are mediated by amygdala function, animal models indicate that oxytocin receptors in the ventral striatum (VS) modulate sensitivity to social reinforcers.

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Aug
2013

Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a group of neurodevelopmental conditions that are accompanied by atypical brain connectivity. So far, in vivo evidence for atypical structural brain connectivity in ASD has mainly been based on neuroimaging studies of cortical white matter. However, genetic studies suggest that abnormal connectivity in ASD may also affect neural connections within the cortical gray matter.

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Aug
2013

Higher rates of substance use and dependence have been observed in the offspring of mothers who smoked during pregnancy. Animal studies indicate that prenatal exposure to nicotine alters the development of brain areas related to reward processing, which might be a risk factor for substance use and addiction later in life. However, no study has examined the effect of maternal smoking on the offspring's brain response during reward processing.

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Oct
2013

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by deficits in reward sensitivity and response inhibition. The relative contribution of these frontostriatal mechanisms to ADHD symptoms and their genetic determinants is largely unexplored.
Using functional magnetic resonance imaging and genetic analysis of the monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) gene, we investigated how striatal and inferior frontal activation patterns contribute to ADHD symptoms depending on MAOA genotype in a sample of adolescent boys (n = 190).

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Jun
2013

Bipolar disorder is a severe mood disorder, which normally begins during adolescence or early adulthood and has a heritability of up to 80%. The largest genome-wide association analysis of bipolar disorder recently identified a new genome-wide associated variant in OZD4 (rs12576775). The aim of the present study was to further elucidate the role of this risk variant in the disease process using an imaging genetics approach.

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Sep
2013

Recently, genome-wide association between schizophrenia and an intronic variant in AMBRA1 (rs11819869) was reported. Additionally, in a reverse genetic approach in adult healthy subjects, risk allele carriers showed a higher medial prefrontal cortex blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) response during a flanker task examining motor inhibition as an aspect of impulsivity. To test whether this finding can be expanded to further aspects of impulsivity, we analysed the effects of the rs11819869 genotype on impulsivity-related traits on a behavioral, temperament and neural level in a large sample of healthy adolescents.

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Dec
2012

The firing of mesolimbic dopamine neurons is important for drug-induced reinforcement, although underlying genetic factors remain poorly understood. In a recent genome-wide association metaanalysis of alcohol intake, we identified a suggestive association of SNP rs26907 in the ras-specific guanine-nucleotide releasing factor 2 (RASGRF2) gene, encoding a protein that mediates Ca(2+)-dependent activation of the ERK pathway. We performed functional characterization of this gene in relation to alcohol-related phenotypes and mesolimbic dopamine function in both mice and adolescent humans.

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Mar
2013

Genetic variations in fat mass- and obesity (FTO)-associated gene, a well-replicated gene locus of obesity, appear to be associated also with reduced regional brain volumes in elderly. Here, we examined whether FTO is associated with total brain volume in adolescence, thus exploring possible developmental effects of FTO. We studied a population-based sample of 598 adolescents recruited from the French Canadian founder population in whom we measured brain volume by magnetic resonance imaging.

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Nov
2012

Adolescence is a transition period that is assumed to be characterized by increased sensitivity to reward. While there is growing research on reward processing in adolescents, investigations into the engagement of brain regions under different reward-related conditions in one sample of healthy adolescents, especially in a target age group, are missing. We aimed to identify brain regions preferentially activated in a reaction time task (monetary incentive delay (MID) task) and a simple guessing task (SGT) in a sample of 14-year-old adolescents (N = 54) using two commonly used reward paradigms.

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Jun
2012

The impulsive behavior that is often characteristic of adolescence may reflect underlying neurodevelopmental processes. Moreover, impulsivity is a multi-dimensional construct, and it is plausible that distinct brain networks contribute to its different cognitive, clinical and behavioral aspects. As these networks have not yet been described, we identified distinct cortical and subcortical networks underlying successful inhibitions and inhibition failures in a large sample (n = 1,896) of 14-year-old adolescents.

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Apr
2012

Identification of common variants associated with human hippocampal and intracranial volumes.

Nat Genet 2012 Apr 15;44(5):552-61. Epub 2012 Apr 15.
Jason L Stein, Sarah E Medland, Alejandro Arias Vasquez, Derrek P Hibar, Rudy E Senstad, Anderson M Winkler, Roberto Toro, Katja Appel, Richard Bartecek, Ørjan Bergmann, Manon Bernard, Andrew A Brown, Dara M Cannon, M Mallar Chakravarty, Andrea Christoforou, Martin Domin, Oliver Grimm, Marisa Hollinshead, Avram J Holmes, Georg Homuth, Jouke-Jan Hottenga, Camilla Langan, Lorna M Lopez, Narelle K Hansell, Kristy S Hwang, Sungeun Kim, Gonzalo Laje, Phil H Lee, Xinmin Liu, Eva Loth, Anbarasu Lourdusamy, Morten Mattingsdal, Sebastian Mohnke, Susana Muñoz Maniega, Kwangsik Nho, Allison C Nugent, Carol O'Brien, Martina Papmeyer, Benno Pütz, Adaikalavan Ramasamy, Jerod Rasmussen, Mark Rijpkema, Shannon L Risacher, J Cooper Roddey, Emma J Rose, Mina Ryten, Li Shen, Emma Sprooten, Eric Strengman, Alexander Teumer, Daniah Trabzuni, Jessica Turner, Kristel van Eijk, Theo G M van Erp, Marie-Jose van Tol, Katharina Wittfeld, Christiane Wolf, Saskia Woudstra, Andre Aleman, Saud Alhusaini, Laura Almasy, Elisabeth B Binder, David G Brohawn, Rita M Cantor, Melanie A Carless, Aiden Corvin, Michael Czisch, Joanne E Curran, Gail Davies, Marcio A A de Almeida, Norman Delanty, Chantal Depondt, Ravi Duggirala, Thomas D Dyer, Susanne Erk, Jesen Fagerness, Peter T Fox, Nelson B Freimer, Michael Gill, Harald H H Göring, Donald J Hagler, David Hoehn, Florian Holsboer, Martine Hoogman, Norbert Hosten, Neda Jahanshad, Matthew P Johnson, Dalia Kasperaviciute, Jack W Kent, Peter Kochunov, Jack L Lancaster, Stephen M Lawrie, David C Liewald, René Mandl, Mar Matarin, Manuel Mattheisen, Eva Meisenzahl, Ingrid Melle, Eric K Moses, Thomas W Mühleisen, Matthias Nauck, Markus M Nöthen, Rene L Olvera, Massimo Pandolfo, G Bruce Pike, Ralf Puls, Ivar Reinvang, Miguel E Rentería, Marcella Rietschel, Joshua L Roffman, Natalie A Royle, Dan Rujescu, Jonathan Savitz, Hugo G Schnack, Knut Schnell, Nina Seiferth, Colin Smith, Vidar M Steen, Maria C Valdés Hernández, Martijn Van den Heuvel, Nic J van der Wee, Neeltje E M Van Haren, Joris A Veltman, Henry Völzke, Robert Walker, Lars T Westlye, Christopher D Whelan, Ingrid Agartz, Dorret I Boomsma, Gianpiero L Cavalleri, Anders M Dale, Srdjan Djurovic, Wayne C Drevets, Peter Hagoort, Jeremy Hall, Andreas Heinz, Clifford R Jack, Tatiana M Foroud, Stephanie Le Hellard, Fabio Macciardi, Grant W Montgomery, Jean Baptiste Poline, David J Porteous, Sanjay M Sisodiya, John M Starr, Jessika Sussmann, Arthur W Toga, Dick J Veltman, Henrik Walter, Michael W Weiner, , , , , Joshua C Bis, M Arfan Ikram, Albert V Smith, Vilmundur Gudnason, Christophe Tzourio, Meike W Vernooij, Lenore J Launer, Charles DeCarli, Sudha Seshadri, , Ole A Andreassen, Liana G Apostolova, Mark E Bastin, John Blangero, Han G Brunner, Randy L Buckner, Sven Cichon, Giovanni Coppola, Greig I de Zubicaray, Ian J Deary, Gary Donohoe, Eco J C de Geus, Thomas Espeseth, Guillén Fernández, David C Glahn, Hans J Grabe, John Hardy, Hilleke E Hulshoff Pol, Mark Jenkinson, René S Kahn, Colm McDonald, Andrew M McIntosh, Francis J McMahon, Katie L McMahon, Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Derek W Morris, Bertram Müller-Myhsok, Thomas E Nichols, Roel A Ophoff, Tomas Paus, Zdenka Pausova, Brenda W Penninx, Steven G Potkin, Philipp G Sämann, Andrew J Saykin, Gunter Schumann, Jordan W Smoller, Joanna M Wardlaw, Michael E Weale, Nicholas G Martin, Barbara Franke, Margaret J Wright, Paul M Thompson,
Identifying genetic variants influencing human brain structures may reveal new biological mechanisms underlying cognition and neuropsychiatric illness. The volume of the hippocampus is a biomarker of incipient Alzheimer's disease and is reduced in schizophrenia, major depression and mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Whereas many brain imaging phenotypes are highly heritable, identifying and replicating genetic influences has been difficult, as small effects and the high costs of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have led to underpowered studies.

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May
2012

In this paper we investigate the use of classical fMRI Random Effect (RFX) group statistics when analyzing a very large cohort and the possible improvement brought from anatomical information. Using 1326 subjects from the IMAGEN study, we first give a global picture of the evolution of the group effect t-value from a simple face-watching contrast with increasing cohort size. We obtain a wide activated pattern, far from being limited to the reasonably expected brain areas, illustrating the difference between statistical significance and practical significance.

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Mar
2012

Individual variation in reward sensitivity may have an important role in early substance use and subsequent development of substance abuse. This may be especially important during adolescence, a transition period marked by approach behavior and a propensity toward risk taking, novelty seeking and alteration of the social landscape. However, little is known about the relative contribution of personality, behavior, and brain responses for prediction of alcohol use in adolescents.

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Jan
2012

Increased risk-taking behavior has been associated with addiction, a disorder also linked to abnormalities in reward processing. Specifically, an attenuated response of reward-related areas (e.g.

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Jan
2012

Dexterity is a fundamental skill in our everyday life. Particularly, the fine-tuning of reaching for objects is of high relevance and crucially coordinated by the cerebellum. Although neuronal cerebellar structures mediate dexterity, classical whole brain voxel-based morphometry (VBM) has not identified structural correlates of dexterity in the cerebellum.

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Sep
2011

A key challenge for intervention and prevention of addictions is the identification of genetic, neurobiological and cognitive risk profiles that can predict which adolescents are at risk for addiction. Abnormalities in reinforcement behaviour have been linked to addiction vulnerability and imaging genetic studies have begun to elucidate the mechanisms by which genetic and environmental factors influence brain function underlying individual variability in reinforcement behaviour. Most studies have examined associations between a few well-characterised candidate polymorphisms and task-related brain activation differences in individual regions of interest.

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Apr
2012

Large-scale magnetic resonance (MR) studies of the human brain offer unique opportunities for identifying genetic and environmental factors shaping the human brain. Here, we describe a dataset collected in the context of a multi-centre study of the adolescent brain, namely the IMAGEN Study. We focus on one of the functional paradigms included in the project to probe the brain network underlying processing of ambiguous and angry faces.

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May
2011

Adolescents are particularly vulnerable to addiction, and in the case of smoking, this often leads to long-lasting nicotine dependence. The authors investigated a possible neural mechanism underlying this vulnerability.
Functional MRI was performed during reward anticipation in 43 adolescent smokers and 43 subjects matched on age, gender, and IQ.

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Jul
2011

This study combined an event schema approach with top-down processing perspectives to investigate whether high-functioning children and adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) spontaneously attend to and remember context-relevant aspects of scenes. Participants read one story of story-pairs (e.g.

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Jun
2010

This study used a novel rating task to investigate whether high-functioning individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have difficulties distinguishing essential from variable aspects of familiar events. Participants read stories about everyday events and judged how often central, variable, and inappropriate event-components normally occur in this type of situation. The ASD boys made significantly more errors than the typically developing boys in rating the occurrences of variable aspects.

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Apr
2010

Behavioural, neuroimaging and neurophysiological approaches emphasise the active and constructive nature of visual perception, determined not solely by the environmental input, but modulated top-down by prior knowledge. For example, degraded images, which at first appear as meaningless 'blobs', can easily be recognized as, say, a face, after having seen the same image un-degraded. This conscious perception of the fragmented stimuli relies on top-down priming influences from systems involved in attention and mental imagery on the processing of stimulus attributes, and feature-binding [Dolan, R.

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Jun
2008

Individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are often reported to be good at detecting minute changes in the environment. This study tested two factors in this phenomenon; detail-focus and reduced top-down influence of scene-schema expectations on spontaneous attention to visual scene elements. Using a change blindness paradigm, adults with ASD and matched typically developing (TD) adults were presented with images of naturalistic scenes (e.

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Mar
2008

Event schemas (generalized knowledge of what happens at common real-life events, e.g., a birthday party) are an important cognitive tool for social understanding: They provide structure for social experiences while accounting for many variable aspects.

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