Associations of Psychopathic Traits With Local and Global Brain Network Topology in Young Adult Women
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CitationLindner, Philip. Flodin, Pär. Budhiraja, Meenal. Savic, Ivanka. Jokinen, Jussi. Tiihonen, Jari. Hodgins, Sheilagh. (2018). Associations of Psychopathic Traits With Local and Global Brain Network Topology in Young Adult Women. Biological psychiatry: Cognitive neuroscience and neuroimaging, 3 (12) , 1003-1012. 10.1016/j.bpsc.2018.04.01.
Psychopathic traits vary dimensionally in the population and are associated with multiple negative outcomes. The impaired integration theory (IIT) proposes that psychopathic traits are associated with abnormal neural network topology, such that disturbed integration of neural networks results in a self-perpetuating impairment in rapid integration and learning from multiple components of information. The IIT is based on findings from male offenders presenting high scores on all psychopathic traits. The present study investigated whether IIT predictions of topology abnormalities were associated with psychopathic traits, measured dimensionally, in young adult women with subsyndromal scores.
Seventy-three women, with an average age of 25 years, were assessed using the Psychopathy Checklist–Revised and completed resting-state magnetic resonance imaging. Preprocessed time series from 90 anatomical regions were extracted to form connectivity matrices and used to calculate network topology based on graph theory. Correlations between total psychopathy and factor scores with both the raw connectivity matrix and global and local graph theory measures were computed.
Total psychopathy scores and behavioral factor scores were related to connectivity between several pairs of regions, primarily limbic/paralimbic. Psychopathic traits were not associated with global topology measures. Topology abnormalities, robust across network formation thresholds, were found in nodes of the default mode network and in hubs connecting several resting-state networks.
IIT predictions of abnormal topology of hubs and default mode network nodes with dimensionally measured psychopathic traits were confirmed in a sample of young women. Regional abnormalities, accompanied by preserved global topology, may underlie context-specific abnormal information processing and integration.