Autisme-Open Access

Autisme-Open Access
Libre accès

ISSN: 2165-7890


Brain Diffusion Tensor Imaging and Volumetric Analysis: Grey and White Matter Changes in Preschool Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Anna Pichiecchio, Tiziana Carigi, Niels Bergsland, Sara Gianfelice, Fulvia Palesi, Matteo Alessio Chiappedi, Giorgio Rossi, Stefano Bastianello and Umberto Balottin

We aimed to investigate whether DTI metrics and volumetric analysis could detect regional abnormalities in young Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) children. A sample of 22 pre-school children affected by ASD and a group of 10 age-matched controls underwent a conventional and advanced MRI protocol, including DTI and 3D T1- weighted imaging. Volumetric analysis revealed no significant differences between the ASD children and the controls, while the DTI results suggested an early involvement of both the cerebellum and the supratentorial grey matter (GM) in young ASD children, with fractional anisotropy (FA) emerging the most sensitive parameter.GM-FA changes correlated with Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic (ADOS-G) and the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R). Further investigation in a larger sample is warranted in order to confirm a potential primary role of GM versus WM changes in the complex aetiopathogenesis of ASD.