Anatomical measurements of the orbitofrontal cortex in child and adolescent patients with bipolar disorder

Pablo Najt, Mark Nicoletti, Hua Hsuan Chen, John P. Hatch, Sheila C. Caetano, Roberto B. Sassi, David Axelson, Paolo Brambilla, Macheri S. Keshavan, Neal D. Ryan, Boris Birmaher, Jair C. Soares

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Imaging studies indicate smaller orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) volume in mood disorder patients compared with healthy subjects. We sought to determine whether child and adolescent patients with bipolar disorder have smaller OFC volumes than healthy controls. Fourteen children and adolescents meeting DSM-IV criteria for bipolar disorder (six males and eight females with a mean age ± S.D. = 15.5 ± 3.2 years) and 20 healthy controls (11 males and nine females with mean age ± S.D. = 16.9 ± 3.8 years) were studied. Orbitofrontal cortex volume was measured using magnetic resonance imaging. Male bipolar patients had smaller gray matter volumes in medial (p = 0.044), right medial (0.037) and right (p = 0.032) lateral OFC subdivisions compared to male controls. In contrast, female patients had larger gray matter volumes in left (p = 0.03), lateral (p = 0.012), left lateral (p = 0.007), and trends for larger volumes in right lateral and left medial OFC subdivisions compared with female controls. Male patients exhibit smaller gray matter volumes, while female patients exhibit larger volumes in some OFC sub-regions. Gender differences in OFC abnormalities may be involved in illness pathophysiology among young bipolar patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-186
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Feb 21 2007


  • Adolescents
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Mood disorders
  • MRI
  • Orbitofrontal cortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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