3 years ago

Uncovering the Neuroanatomical Correlates of Cognitive, Affective, and Conative Theory of Mind in Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury: A Neural Systems Perspective.

Hearps SJ, Silk TJ, Ryan NP, Catroppa C, Anderson VA, Beauchamp MH, Yeates KO, Beare R
Deficits in Theory of Mind (ToM) are common after neurological insult acquired in the first and second decade of life, however the contribution of large-scale neural networks to ToM deficits in children with brain injury is unclear. Using pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a model, this study investigated the sub-acute effect of brain injury on gray-matter volume of three large-scale, domain-general brain networks (the Default Mode Network, DMN; the Central Executive Network, CEN; and the Salience Network, SN), as well as two domain-specific neural networks implicated in social-affective processes (the Cerebro-Cerebellar Mentalizing Network, CCMN, and the Mirror Neuron/Empathy Network, MNEN). We also evaluated prospective structure-function relationships between these large-scale neural networks and cognitive, affective and conative ToM. 3D T1 weighted magnetic resonance imaging sequences were acquired sub-acutely in 137 children (TBI: n = 103; typically developing (TD) children: n = 34). All children were assessed on measures of ToM at 24-months post-injury. Children with severe TBI showed sub-acute volumetric reductions in the CCMN, SN, MNEN, CEN and DMN, as well as decreased gray-matter volumes of several hub regions of these neural networks. Volumetric reductions in the CCMN and several of its hub regions, including the cerebellum, predicted poorer cognitive ToM. In contrast, poorer affective and conative ToM were predicted by volumetric reductions in the SN and MNEN, respectively. Overall, results suggest that cognitive, affective and conative ToM may be prospectively predicted by individual differences in structure of different neural systems-the CCMN, SN, and MNEN, respectively. The prospective relationship between cerebellar volumes and cognitive ToM outcomes is a novel finding in our pediatric brain injury sample and suggests that the cerebellum may play a role in the neural networks important for ToM. These findings are discussed in relation to neurocognitive models of ToM. We conclude that detection of sub-acute volumetric abnormalities of large-scale neural networks and their hub regions may aid in the early identification of children at risk for chronic social-cognitive impairment.

Publisher URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28505355

DOI: PubMed:28505355

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.