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Abstract #3604

Exploratory Group Independent Components Analysis of resting state fMRI data reveals widespread brain function impairments in Gulf War Illness

Kaundinya Gopinath1, Unal Sakoglu2, Bruce Crosson3,4, and Robert Haley5

1Department of Radiology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, United States, 2University of Houston Clear-Lake, Houston, TX, United States, 3VA RR&D Center of Excellence, Atlanta VAMC, Decatur, GA, United States, 4Department of Neurology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, United States, 5Department of Internal Medicine, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States

Around 200,000 veterans (up to 32% of those deployed) of the 1991 Gulf War (GW) suffer from GW illness (GWI), which is characterized by multiple deficits in cognitive, emotion, sensory and interoception domains. In this study we examined 23 GWI patients and 30 age-matched controls with resting state fMRI (rsFMRI) in order to map impairments in brain function networks in GWI with group independent components analysis. The results show that GWI veterans exhibit impaired, or abnormally increased functional connectivity in a lot of brain function networks consistent with their self-reported symptoms.

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