Strategy-based reasoning training modulates cortical thickness and resting-state functional connectivity in adults with chronic traumatic brain injury

Kihwan Han, Rebecca A. Davis, Sandra B. Chapman, Daniel C. Krawczyk
2017 Brain and Behavior  
Prior studies have demonstrated training-induced changes in the healthy adult brain. Yet, it remains unclear how the injured brain responds to cognitive training months-to-years after injury. Methods: Sixty individuals with chronic traumatic brain injury (TBI) were randomized into either strategy-based (N = 31) or knowledge-based (N = 29) training for 8 weeks. We measured cortical thickness and resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) before training, immediately posttraining, and 3 months
more » ... osttraining. Results: Relative to the knowledge-based training group, the cortical thickness of the strategy-based training group showed diverse temporal patterns of changes over multiple brain regions (p vertex < .05, p cluster < .05): (1) increases followed by decreases, (2) monotonic increases, and (3) monotonic decreases. However, network-based statistics (NBS) analysis of rsFC among these regions revealed that the strategy-based training group induced only monotonic increases in connectivity, relative to the knowledge-based training group (|Z| > 1.96, p NBS < 0.05). Complementing the rsFC results, the strategy-based training group yielded monotonic improvement in scores for the trail-making test (p < .05). Analyses of brain-behavior relationships revealed that improvement in trail-making scores were associated with training-induced changes in cortical thickness (p vertex < .05, p cluster < .05) and rsFC (p vertex < .05, p cluster < .005) within the strategy-based training group. Conclusions: These findings suggest that training-induced brain plasticity continues through chronic phases of TBI and that brain connectivity and cortical thickness may serve as markers of plasticity. K E Y W O R D S functional connectivity, magnetic resonance imaging, morphometry, plasticity, rehabilitation, traumatic brain injury
doi:10.1002/brb3.687 pmid:28523229 pmcid:PMC5434192 fatcat:5ise3xj3vvboxiiflosonxemce