Brain structural and functional connectivity and network organization in cerebral palsy: A scoping review

Nina P. T. Jacobs, Petra J. W. Pouwels, Marjolein M. van der Krogt, Pieter Meyns, Kangdi Zhu, Loïs Nelissen, Linda J. Schoonmade, Annemieke I. Buizer, Laura A. van de Pol

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Aim: To explore altered structural and functional connectivity and network organization in cerebral palsy (CP), by clinical CP subtype (unilateral spastic, bilateral spastic, dyskinetic, and ataxic CP). Method: PubMed and Embase databases were systematically searched. Extracted data included clinical characteristics, analyses, outcome measures, and results. Results: Sixty-five studies were included, of which 50 investigated structural connectivity, and 20 investigated functional connectivity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (14 studies) or electroencephalography (six studies). Five of the 50 studies of structural connectivity and one of 14 of functional connectivity investigated whole-brain network organization. Most studies included patients with unilateral spastic CP; none included ataxic CP. Interpretation: Differences in structural and functional connectivity were observed between investigated clinical CP subtypes and typically developing individuals on a wide variety of measures, including efferent, afferent, interhemispheric, and intrahemispheric connections. Directions for future research include extending knowledge in underrepresented CP subtypes and methodologies, evaluating the prognostic potential of specific connectivity and network measures in neonates, and understanding therapeutic effects on brain connectivity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1157-1173
Number of pages17
JournalDevelopmental Medicine and Child Neurology
Issue number9
Early online date2023
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

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