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Structural magnetic resonance imaging data from 308 twins, 64 singleton siblings of twins, and 228 singletons were analyzed using structural equation modeling and selected multivariate methods to identify genetically mediated intracortical associations. Principal components analyses (PCA) of the genetic correlation matrix indicated a single factor accounting for over 60% of the genetic variability in cortical thickness. When covaried for mean global cortical thickness, PCA, cluster analyses, and graph models identified genetically mediated fronto-parietal and occipital networks. Graph theoretical models suggest that the observed genetically mediated relationships follow small world architectural rules. These findings are largely concordant with other multivariate studies of brain structure and function, the twin literature, and current understanding on the role of genes in cortical neurodevelopment.

Original publication




Journal article


Cereb Cortex

Publication Date





1737 - 1747


Adolescent, Brain Mapping, Cerebral Cortex, Child, Child, Preschool, Female, Humans, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Multivariate Analysis, Nerve Net, Siblings, Twins