Abnormal surface morphology of the central sulcus in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder

Shuyu Li, Shaoyi Wang, Xinwei Li, Qiongling Li, Xiaobo Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The central sulcus (CS) divides the primary motor and somatosensory areas, and its three-dimensional (3D) anatomy reveals the structural changes of the sensorimotor regions. Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is associated with sensorimotor and executive function deficits. However, it is largely unknown whether the morphology of the CS alters due to inappropriate development in the ADHD brain. Here, we employed the sulcus-based morphometry approach to investigate the 3D morphology of the CS in 42 children whose ages spanned from 8.8 to 13.5 years (21 with ADHD and 21 controls). After automatic labeling of each CS, we computed seven regional shape metrics for each CS, including the global average length, average depth, maximum depth, average span, surface area, average cortical thickness, and local sulcal profile. We found that the average depth and maximum depth of the left CS as well as the average cortical thickness of bilateral CS in the ADHD group were significantly larger than those in the healthy children. Moreover, significant between-group differences in the sulcal profile had been found in middle sections of the CSs bilaterally, and these changes were positively correlated with the hyperactivity-impulsivity scores in the children with ADHD. Altogether, our results provide evidence for the abnormity of the CS anatomical morphology in children with ADHD due to the structural changes in the motor cortex, which significantly contribute to the clinical symptomatology of the disorder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number114
JournalFrontiers in Neuroanatomy
Issue numberAUGUST
StatePublished - Aug 28 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anatomy
  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


  • ADHD
  • Central sulcus
  • MRI
  • Surface morphology


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