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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychiatry | doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2018.00629

Altered grey matter volume and its correlation with PTSD severity in Chinese earthquake survivors

Xiaoyu Zhang1, Jianxin Zhang1, Li Wang1 and  Wencai Zhang1*
  • 1Chinese Academy of Sciences, China

Objective: To detect the changes of gray matter volume (GMV) and their correlation with severity of symptom in patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) who were defined with updated DSM-5 diagnostic criteria. Method: 71 participants were assigned into PTSD group (n=35) or trauma-exposed control (TEC) group (n=36) with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition. Voxel-based morphometry analysis was used to detect alterations in GMV in the PTSD group. Results: We found that the PTSD group had larger GMV in the left middle temporal gyrus (MTG) and in the right dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), and smaller GMV in the region of the right temporal pole (TP) than the TEC group. We also found that PTSD Checklist for DSM-5 (PCL-5) scores correlated positively with the left MTG and right dmPFC GMV, and negatively with left TP GMV. These correlations were consistent with the findings of the between-group comparisons. Conclusions: GMV alterations in the MTG, dmPFC, and TP are detected in the group comparisons and correlated with symptom severity when classifying PTSD individuals according to DSM-5 diagnostic criteria within an earthquake-exposed population.

Keywords: PTSD, DSM-5, grey matter volume, Temporal Lobe, earthquake survivors

Received: 28 Aug 2018; Accepted: 06 Nov 2018.

Edited by:

Jeffrey R. Strawn, University of Cincinnati, United States

Reviewed by:

Seth D. Norrholm, Emory University School of Medicine, United States
Niels Bergsland, University at Buffalo, United States  

Copyright: © 2018 Zhang, Zhang, Wang and Zhang. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: PhD. Wencai Zhang, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100864, Beijing, China,