All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Adrienne C Lahti

Advisory Committee Members

Allan C Dobbins

Robert E McCullumsmith

Rosalinda C Roberts

Kristina M Visscher

Timothy M Wick

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2014

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Engineering

Abstract

Schizophrenia affects approximately 1% of the population and is one of the top five causes of disability worldwide. Patient response to any particular drug is variable and currently unpredictable. Our overall goal is to identify imaging biomarkers that will distinguish patients with schizophrenia who will respond to an antipsychotic drug from those who will not. When considering potential biomarkers, it is important to note that schizophrenia is known to involve altered neuronal connections, thought to reflect pathologically relevant changes associated with the disease. We propose to utilize functional connectivity as a biomarker for treatment response to antipsychotic drugs in schizophrenia. Our previous imaging studies have made significant progress by identifying several brain regions that show changes in blood flow in response to antipsychotic drugs. The proposed research will build upon this work, by examining differences in connectivity between these regions, using a region-based analysis, and globally, using a network-based analysis, at three time points in antipsychotic drug treatment: (1) in the medication-free, pre-treatment baseline state, (2) after one week of treatment, and (3) after six weeks of treatment.

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