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Specific alterations of resting-state functional connectivity in the triple network related to comorbid anxiety in major depressive disorder
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  • Fienne-Elisa Beckmann,
  • Hanna Gruber,
  • Stephanie Seidenbecher,
  • Saskia Schirmer,
  • Coraline Metzger,
  • Leonardo Tozzi,
  • Thomas Frodl
Fienne-Elisa Beckmann
Otto-von-Guericke-Universitat Magdeburg

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Hanna Gruber
Otto-von-Guericke-Universitat Magdeburg
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Stephanie Seidenbecher
Otto-von-Guericke-Universitat Magdeburg
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Saskia Schirmer
Otto-von-Guericke-Universitat Magdeburg
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Coraline Metzger
Otto-von-Guericke-Universitat Magdeburg
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Leonardo Tozzi
Stanford University
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Thomas Frodl
Universitätsklinikum Aachen
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The brain‘s default mode network (DMN) and the executive control network (ECN) switch engagement influenced by the ventral attention network (VAN). Alterations in resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) within this so-called triple network have been demonstrated in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) or anxiety disorders (AD). This study investigated alterations in the RSFC in patients with comorbid MDD and ADs to better understand the pathophysiology of this prevalent group of patients. Sixty-eight participants (52.9 % male, mean age 35.25 years), consisting of 25 patients with comorbid MDD and ADs (MDD+AD), 20 patients with MDD only (MDD-AD) and 23 healthy controls (HC) were investigated clinically and with 3T resting-state fMRI. RSFC utilizing a seed-based approach within the three networks belonging to the triple network was compared between the groups. Compared to HC, MDD+AD showed significantly reduced RSFC between the ECN and the VAN, the DMN and the VAN and within the ECN. No differences could be found for the MDD group compared to both other groups. Furthermore, symptom severity and medication status did not affect RSFC values. The results of this study show a distinct set of alterations of RSFC for patients with comorbid MDD and AD compared to healthy controls. This set of dysfunctions might be related to less adequate switching between the DMN and the ECN as well as poorer functioning of the ECN. This might contribute to additional difficulties engaging and utilizing consciously controlled emotional regulation strategies.
28 Sep 2023Submitted to European Journal of Neuroscience
28 Sep 2023Assigned to Editor
28 Sep 2023Submission Checks Completed
02 Oct 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
02 Oct 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
26 Oct 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Major