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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 860658, 8 pages
Research Article

Diffusion Tensor Imaging Studies on Chinese Patients with Social Anxiety Disorder

1Mental Health Center, West China Hospital of Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China
2The Seventh People’s Hospital of Hangzhou, Hangzhou 310013, China
3Key Laboratory for Neuroinformation of Ministry of Education, School of Life Science and Technology, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu 610054, China
4Department of Medical Image, College of Biomedical Engineering, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China
5Huaxi MR Research Center (HMRRC), Department of Radiology, West China Hospital of Sichuan University, West China School of Medicine, Chengdu 610041, China

Received 20 October 2013; Revised 6 January 2014; Accepted 29 January 2014; Published 3 March 2014

Academic Editor: Yong He

Copyright © 2014 Changjian Qiu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The aim of this study was to explore white-matter disruption in social anxiety disorder (SAD) patients by using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and to investigate the relationship between cerebral abnormalities and the severity of the symptoms. Eighteen SAD patients and age- and gender-matched healthy controls were recruited. DTI scans were performed to measure fractional anisotropy (FA) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) for each subject. We used voxel-based analysis to determine the differences of FA and ADC values between the two groups with two-sample -tests. The SAD patient showed significantly decreased FA values in the white matter of the left insula, left inferior frontal gyrus, left middle temporal gyrus, and left inferior parietal gyrus and increased ADC values in the left insula, bilateral inferior frontal gyrus, bilateral middle temporal gyrus, and left inferior parietal gyrus. In SAD patients, we observed a significant negative correlation between FA values in the left insula and the total LSAS scores and a positive correlation between the ADC values in the left inferior frontal gyrus and the total LSAS scores. Above results suggested that white-matter microstructural changes might contribute to the neuropathology of SAD.