Weakened effective connectivity between salience network and default mode network during resting state in adolescent depression

David Willinger, Isabelle Häberling, Iva Ilioska, Gregor Berger, Susanne Walitza, Silvia Brem

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

Abstract

Adolescent major depressive disorder (MDD) is associated with altered resting-state connectivity between the default mode network (DMN) and the salience network (SN), which are involved in self-referential processing and detecting and filtering salient stimuli, respectively. Using spectral dynamical causal modelling, we investigated the effective connectivity and input sensitivity between key nodes of these networks in 30 adolescents with MDD and 32 healthy controls while undergoing resting-state fMRI. We found that the DMN received weaker inhibition from the SN and that the medial prefrontal cortex and the anterior cingulate cortex showed reduced self-inhibition in MDD, making them more prone to external influences. Moreover, we found that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) intake was associated with decreased and increased self-inhibition of the SN and DMN, respectively, in patients. Our findings suggest that adolescent MDD is characterized by a hierarchical imbalance between the DMN and the SN, which could affect the integration of emotional and self-related information. We propose that SSRIs may help restore network function by modulating excitatory/inhibitory balance in the DMN and the SN. Our study highlights the potential of prefrontal-amygdala interactions as a biomarker and a therapeutic target for adolescent depression.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1386984
Pages (from-to)1386984
JournalFrontiers in Psychiatry
Volume15
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 04 Apr 2024

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