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Papers of the Week

Papers: 16 Mar 2024 - 22 Mar 2024

2024 Mar 21

Brain Imaging Behav


Alterations in degree centrality and functional connectivity in tension-type headache: a resting-state fMRI study.


Zhang S, Zhao M, Sun J, Wen J, Li M, Wang C, Xu Q, Wang J, Sun X, Cheng L, Xue X, Wang X, Jia X


Previous studies have provided evidence of structural and functional changes in the brains of patients with tension-type headache (TTH). However, investigations of functional connectivity alterations in TTH have been inconclusive. The present study aimed to investigate abnormal intrinsic functional connectivity patterns in patients with TTH through the voxel-wise degree centrality (DC) method as well as functional connectivity (FC) analysis. A total of 33 patients with TTH and 30 healthy controls (HCs) underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) scanning and were enrolled in the final study. The voxel-wise DC method was performed to quantify abnormalities in the local functional connectivity hubs. Nodes with abnormal DC were used as seeds for further FC analysis to evaluate alterations in functional connectivity patterns. In addition, correlational analyses were performed between abnormal DC and FC values and clinical features. Compared with HCs, patients with TTH had higher DC values in the left middle temporal gyrus (MTG.L) and lower DC values in the left anterior cingulate and paracingulate gyri (ACG.L) (GRF, voxel-wise p < 0.05, cluster-wise p < 0.05, two-tailed). Seed-based FC analyses revealed that patients with TTH showed greater connections between ACG.L and the right cerebellum lobule IX (CR-IX.R), and smaller connections between ACG.L and ACG.L. The MTG.L showed increased FC with the ACG.L, and decreased FC with the right caudate nucleus (CAU.R) and left precuneus (PCUN.L) (GRF, voxel-wise p < 0.05, cluster-wise p < 0.05, two-tailed). Additionally, the DC value of the MTG.L was negatively correlated with the DASS-depression score (p = 0.046, r=-0.350). This preliminary study provides important insights into the pathophysiological mechanisms of TTH.