Marcella Bellani

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BACKGROUND Diffusion tensor imaging allows the study of integrity of white matter (WM) tracts. Literature suggests that WM integrity could be altered in bipolar disorder. Heterogeneity of brain imaging methods, the studied samples, and drug treatments make localization, nature, and severity of the WM abnormalities unclear. METHODS We applied tract-based(More)
The objective of this study was to use a combined local descriptor, namely scale invariance feature transform (SIFT), and a non linear support vector machine (SVM) technique to automatically classify patients with schizophrenia. The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), considered a reliable neuroanatomical marker of the disease, was chosen as region of(More)
In this paper, we exploit spectral shape analysis techniques to detect brain morphological abnormalities. We propose a new shape descriptor able to encode morphometric properties of a brain image or region using diffusion geometry techniques based on the local Heat Kernel. Using this approach, it is possible to design a versatile signature, employed in this(More)
AIMS This paper aims at providing an overview of the background, design and initial findings of Psychosis Incident Cohort Outcome Study (PICOS). METHODS PICOS is a large multi-site population-based study on first-episode psychosis (FEP) patients attending public mental health services in the Veneto region (Italy) over a 3-year period. PICOS has a(More)
Brain atrophy has consistently been observed in schizophrenia, representing a 'gross' evidence of anatomical abnormalities. Reduced cerebral blood volume (CBV) may accompany brain size decrement in schizophrenia, as suggested by prior small SPECT studies. In this study, we non-invasively investigated the hemisphere CBV in a large sample of patients(More)
BACKGROUND The entorhinal cortex is located in the medial temporal lobe and is involved in memory and learning. Previous MRI studies reported conflicting findings in schizophrenia, showing normal or reduced entorhinal size. OBJECTIVES To explore entorhinal cortex volumes in a large sample of patients with schizophrenia recruited from the geographically(More)
OBJECTIVE Several magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and postmortem studies have supported the role of the thalamus in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Interestingly, a recent small diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) study showed abnormal thalamic microstructure in patients with schizophrenia. The objective of our study was to use structural MRI and DWI to(More)
Accumulating evidence suggest a life-long impact of disease related mechanisms on brain structure in schizophrenia which may be modified by antipsychotic treatment. The aim of the present study was to investigate in a large sample of patients with schizophrenia the effect of illness duration and antipsychotic treatment on brain structure. Seventy-one(More)
Autism spectrum disorders are characterized by core deficits with regard to three domains, i.e. social interaction, communication and repetitive or stereotypic behaviour. It is crucial to develop intervention strategies helping individuals with autism, their caregivers and educators in daily life. For this purpose, virtual reality (VR), i.e. a simulation of(More)