Chronotype differences in cortical thickness: grey matter reflects when you go to bed

Jessica Rosenberg*, Heidi I. L. Jacobs, Ivan I. Maximov, Martina Reske, N. J. Shah

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Based on individual circadian cycles and associated cognitive rhythms, humans can be classified via standardised self-reports as being early (EC), late (LC) and intermediate (IC) chronotypes. Alterations in neural cortical structure underlying these chronotype differences have rarely been investigated and are the scope of this study. 16 healthy male ECs, 16 ICs and 16 LCs were measured with a 3T MAGNETOM TIM TRIO (Siemens, Erlangen) scanner using a magnetization prepared rapid gradient echo sequence. Data were analysed by applying voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and vertex-wise cortical thickness (CTh) analysis. VBM analysis revealed that ECs showed significantly lower grey matter volumes bilateral in the lateral occipital cortex and the precuneus as compared to LCs, and in the right lingual gyrus, occipital fusiform gyrus and the occipital pole as compared to ICs. CTh findings showed lower grey matter volumes for ECs in the left anterior insula, precuneus, inferior parietal cortex, and right pars triangularis than for LCs, and in the right superior parietal gyrus than for ICs. These findings reveal that chronotype differences are associated with specific neural substrates of cortical thickness, surface areas, and folding. We conclude that this might be the basis for chronotype differences in behaviour and brain function. Furthermore, our results speak for the necessity of considering chronotype as a potentially modulating factor in all kinds of structural brain-imaging experiments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3411-3421
Number of pages11
JournalBrain Structure & Function
Volume223
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2018

Keywords

  • Chronotype
  • Circadian
  • Cortical thickness
  • Grey matter
  • Voxel-based morphometry
  • VOXEL-BASED MORPHOMETRY
  • HUMAN CEREBRAL-CORTEX
  • MAGNETIC-RESONANCE IMAGES
  • SURFACE-BASED ANALYSIS
  • GRAY-MATTER
  • FUNCTIONAL NEUROANATOMY
  • HUMAN BRAIN
  • GEOMETRICALLY ACCURATE
  • ALZHEIMERS-DISEASE
  • VEGETATIVE STATE

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