Anterior-Posterior Insular Segmentation of FreeSurfer Generated Region-of-Interest Volume
Brittany Strauss1, Todd D'Amour1, Jeremy D. Cohen1; 1Xavier University of Louisiana, New Orleans, LA, USA
The Parieto-Frontal Integration Theory (P-FIT) of intelligence suggests that a distributed network underlies individual differences in intelligence and reasoning. The P-FIT model assumes that cognitively salient information is integrated from temporal and occipital regions to the prefrontal cortex. Insular cortex is a central region of the salience network that has been functionally implicated in intelligence and cognitive capacity in both developmental and aging populations previously. We investigated the relationship between Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (KBIT) and insular volume. Freesurfer was used to collect insular region-of-interest data from 45 individuals aged 7 to 19 (26 Autism Spectrum Disorder, 19 Typically Developing). Freesurfer insular labels were converted to 3D volumes, imported into Mango, and bisected into functionally relevant anterior and posterior insular regions based using a freely accessible Plugin tool. There were no significant differences in either verbal or non-verbal IQ between to the two groups. Right anterior insular volume was significantly positively correlated with non-verbal IQ. There was also a significant positive relationship between right posterior insular volume with both verbal and non-verbal IQ. Increased rightward asymmetry (i.e. right volume greater than left) of posterior insula was also significantly positively correlated with both verbal and non-verbal IQ. Current structural insular data supports previous findings of increased insular cerebral blood flow related to increased IQ. Data also supports the integral role of the salience network within the P-FIT model of intelligence and reasoning ability.
Topic Area: METHODS: Neuroimaging