Impact of bronchopulmonary dysplasia on brain GABA concentrations in preterm infants: Prospective cohort study
Early human development
Bronchopulmonary dysplasia; GABA; Glutamate; MEGA-PRESS; MR spectroscopy; Premature brain
BACKGROUND: Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) is associated with cognitive-behavioral deficits in very preterm (VPT) infants, often in the absence of structural brain injury. Advanced GABA-editing techniques like Mescher-Garwood point resolved spectroscopy (MEGA-PRESS) can quantify in-vivo gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA+, with macromolecules) and glutamate (Glx, with glutamine) concentrations to investigate for neurophysiologic perturbations in the developing brain of VPT infants. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the relationship between the severity of BPD and basal-ganglia GABA+ and Glx concentrations in VPT infants. METHODS: MRI studies were performed on a 3 T scanner in a cohort of VPT infants [born ≤32 weeks gestational age (GA)] without major structural brain injury and healthy-term infants (>37 weeks GA) at term-equivalent age. MEGA-PRESS (TE68ms, TR2000ms, 256averages) sequence was acquired from the right basal-ganglia voxel (∼3cm) and metabolite concentrations were quantified in institutional units (i.u.). We stratified VPT infants into no/mild (grade 0/1) and moderate-severe (grade 2/3) BPD. RESULTS: Reliable MEGA-PRESS data was available from 63 subjects: 29 healthy-term and 34 VPT infants without major structural brain injury. VPT infants with moderate-severe BPD (n = 20) had the lowest right basal-ganglia GABA+ (median 1.88 vs. 2.28 vs. 2.12 i.u., p = 0.025) and GABA+/choline (0.73 vs. 0.99 vs. 0.88, p = 0.004) in comparison to infants with no/mild BPD and healthy-term infants. The GABA+/Glx ratio was lower (0.34 vs. 0.44, p = 0.034) in VPT infants with moderate-severe BPD than in infants with no/mild BPD. CONCLUSIONS: Reduced GABA+ and GABA+/Glx in VPT infants with moderate-severe BPD indicate neurophysiologic perturbations which could serve as early biomarkers of future cognitive deficits.
Basu, Sudeepta K.; Kapse, Kushal J.; Murnick, Jonathan; Pradhan, Subechhya; Spoehr, Emma; Zhang, Anqing; Andescavage, Nickie; Nino, Gustavo; du Plessis, Adre J.; and Limperopoulos, Catherine, "Impact of bronchopulmonary dysplasia on brain GABA concentrations in preterm infants: Prospective cohort study" (2023). GW Authored Works. Paper 3364.