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Abstract #1964

Evaluation of white matter neuroinflammation in children with autism spectrum disorder using free-water imaging

Wataru Uchida1,2, Koji Kamagata1, Eiji Kirino3,4, Christina Andica1, Yuya Saito1,2, Akifumi Hagiwara1, Toshiaki Akashi1, Akihiko Wada1, Syo Murata1, Masaaki Hori5, and Shigeki Aoki1
1Radiology, Juntendo University Graduate School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan, 2Radiological Sciences, Tokyo Metropolitan University Graduate School of Human Health Sciences, Tokyo, Japan, 3Psychiatry, Juntendo University Graduate School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan, 4Radiology, Juntendo University Shizuoka Hospital, Shizuoka, Japan, 5Radiology, Toho University Omori Medical Center, Tokyo, Japan

We investigated the differences in white matter pathology between children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and typically developing children using single-tensor diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and bi-tensor free-water (FW) imaging. Tract-based spatial statistics analysis demonstrated significantly increased FW volume fraction in children with ASD compared with that in typically developing children. Increased FW volume fraction may reflect neuroinflammation in children with ASD as a result of inflammatory cytokine accumulation in the white matter. Furthermore, we showed that FW imaging is more sensitive and specific than single-tensor DTI in the evaluation of white matter in children with ASD.

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