Application of Neuroimaging in the Diagnosis and Treatment of Depression
Diagnosis of depression is based on clinical parameters which may be clinically reliable but lack biological validity leading to problems of differential diagnosis or treatment. Thus, there is a need for biologically relevant criteria for better diagnosis and treatment of depression. Accumulating neuroimaging studies suggest potential biomarkers such as metabolic activity and structural or functional connectivity within the limbic-cortical circuitries that may serve for this purpose. However, employment of such neuroimaging measures as biomarkers in a clinical setting still requires further investigation. While there are some converging results, a major challenge in the field is the inconsistencies across multiple studies. This is probably due to the heterogeneous patient groups used in these studies, the variety of tasks or methodologies used during neuroimaging, and the different types of treatments or problems associated with poor data quality, which require better statistical approaches. As these problems are likely addressed, neuroimaging biomarkers can be established in the future to facilitate significant improvements in the diagnosis and treatment of depression.
KeywordsNeuroimaging Depression Depressive disorders Major depressive disorder Classification Diagnosis Prognosis Biomarker MRI DTI PET fMRI
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