The Neuroimaging Research Group of the Department of Psychiatry at UMC Utrecht studies structural and functional brain maturation in humans throughout life, in health and diseases such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, ADHD, and autism.

Studies are aimed at finding genetic and environmental markers of variance in brain structure and function over time. We aim to unravel (patho)-physiology of brain plasticity of human brain throughout life.

We develop and implement Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) brain scan protocols and processing pipelines. Scans are being acquired for this purpose on the 1.5T, 3T and 7T scanners at our hospital on a daily basis. Processing pipelines exist for volume quantification, DTI, resting-state fMRI, BOLD fMRI, TMS-fMRI, and functional DTI.

Cohorts of healthy subjects, patients with psychiatric disorders, and their family members, including monozygotic and dizygotic twins and singleton siblings are followed longitudinally at a 2-5 year interval. To date, the continuously growing database consists of over 3000 MRI brain scans.

The Neuroimaging Research Group is based in the Psychiatry Department, Neuroscience Division, of the University Medical Center Utrecht (UMCU), The Netherlands. It is also part of the Brain Center Rudolf Magnus (BCRM), which encompasses many research groups from the UMCU as well as from the Utrecht University.

Recent Publications

    • Schnack HG, van Haren NE, Nieuwenhuis M, Hulshoff Pol HE, Cahn W, Kahn RS, Accelerated brain-aging in schizophrenia: a longitudinal pattern recognition study. Am J Psychiatry. 2016 Jun 1; 173(6):607-16
    • Bohlken, MM, Brouwer, RM, Mandl, RC, Van den Heuvel, MP, Hedman, AM, De Hert, M et al.. Structural Brain Connectivity as a Genetic Marker for Schizophrenia. JAMA Psychiatry. 2015; :1-9. doi: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.1925. PubMed PMID:26606729 .
    • Bootsman, F, Brouwer, RM, Kemner, SM, Schnack, HG, van der Schot, AC, Vonk, R et al.. Contribution of genes and unique environment to cross-sectional and longitudinal measures of subcortical volumes in bipolar disorder. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015; :. doi: 10.1016/j.euroneuro.2015.09.023. PubMed PMID:26481908 .
    • van Haren, NE, Schnack, HG, Koevoets, MG, Cahn, W, Hulshoff Pol, HE, Kahn, RS et al.. Trajectories of subcortical volume change in schizophrenia: A 5-year follow-up. Schizophr. Res. 2015; :. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2015.09.027. PubMed PMID:26439952 .
    • Bohlken, MM, Brouwer, RM, Mandl, RC, Hedman, AM, van den Heuvel, MP, van Haren, NE et al.. Topology of genetic associations between regional gray matter volume and intellectual ability: Evidence for a high capacity network. Neuroimage. 2016;124 (Pt A):1044-53. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.09.046. PubMed PMID:26424180 .
    • Koenis, MM, Brouwer, RM, van den Heuvel, MP, Mandl, RC, van Soelen, IL, Kahn, RS et al.. Development of the brain’s structural network efficiency in early adolescence: A longitudinal DTI twin study. Hum Brain Mapp. 2015; :. doi: 10.1002/hbm.22988. PubMed PMID:26368846 .