Resting-State Functional Connectivity and Psychotic-like Experiences in Childhood: Results From the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development Study

Nicole R. Karcher, Kathleen J. O'Brien, Sridhar Kandala, Deanna M. Barch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Psychotic-like experiences (PLEs) during childhood are associated with greater risk of developing a psychotic disorder (and other mental disorders), highlighting the importance of identifying neural correlates of childhood PLEs. Three major cortical networks—the cingulo-opercular network (CON), default mode network (DMN), and frontoparietal network—are consistently implicated in psychosis and PLEs in adults. However, it is unclear whether variation in functional connectivity is associated with PLEs in school-aged children. Methods: Using hierarchical linear models, we examined the relationships between childhood PLEs and resting-state functional connectivity of the CON, DMN, and frontoparietal network, as well as the other networks, using an a priori network parcellation, using data from 9- to 11-year-olds (n = 3434) in the ABCD (Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development) study. We examined within-network, between-network, and subcortical connectivity. Results: Decreased CON and DMN connectivity, as well as cinguloparietal (CPAR) network connectivity, were associated with greater PLEs, even after accounting for family history of psychotic disorders, internalizing symptoms, and cognitive performance. Decreased DMN connectivity was more strongly associated with increased delusional ideation, whereas decreased CON connectivity was more strongly associated with increased perceptual distortions. Increased CON-cerebellar and decreased CPAR-cerebellar connectivity were also associated with increased PLEs, and CPAR-cerebellar connectivity was more strongly associated with increased perceptual distortions. Conclusions: Consistent with hypotheses about the dimensionality of psychosis, our results provide novel evidence that neural correlates of PLEs, such as reduced functional connectivity of higher-order cognitive networks, are present even in school-aged children. The results provide further validation for continuity of PLEs across the life span.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-15
Number of pages9
JournalBiological Psychiatry
Volume86
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2019

Keywords

  • Delusional ideation
  • Perceptual distortions
  • Psychotic-like experiences
  • Resting-state functional connectivity
  • Subcortical connectivity
  • Within-network connectivity

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