Association between regional white and gray matter volume and ambiguity tolerance: Evidence from voxel-based morphometry

Dandan Tong, Wenjing Yang, Qinglin Zhang, Wenfu Li, Dongtao Wei, Xianwei Che, Meng Zhang, Glenn Hitchman, Jiang Qiu, Yijun Liu, Guikang Cao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The concept of tolerance of ambiguity (AT) is defined as the way in which an individual tends to perceive and deal with confusing, vague, and unclear situations. AT is generally considered as an important personality trait, but the neural mechanisms underlying individual differences in AT have never been investigated. Using voxel-based morphometry and MSTAT-II scale, we investigated the correlations between AT and regional white matter volume (rWMV) and regional gray matter volume (rGMV) in 351 young healthy subjects. We found AT to be positively correlated with rGMV in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), and negatively correlated with rGMV in the precuneus. These results indicate that increased rGMV in the left DLPFC may lead to characteristics of ambiguous stimuli consideration from multiple contexts and risk taking. Decreased rGMV in the left precuneus may be associated with a high tolerance for ambiguity, which attributes uncertainty to self-related factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)983-989
Number of pages7
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015


  • Precuneus
  • Tolerance of ambiguity
  • Voxel-based morphometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neurology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Biological Psychiatry


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