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Biol Psychiatry. 2006 May 1;59(9):812-5. Epub 2006 Jan 25.

BDNF Val66Met allele is associated with reduced hippocampal volume in healthy subjects.

Author information

  • 1Mental Health Research Institute, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

A frequent polymorphism of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene (val(66)met) has been suggested to modulate hippocampal neuronal plasticity and has been associated with individual variations in emotional reactivity traits and episodic memory.

METHODS:

The hippocampal formation was outlined in high-resolution anatomical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data in a sample of 36 healthy volunteers and compared between individuals as a function of the presence of the met-BDNF allele. Both whole-brain volume corrected and uncorrected data were tested for effects of genotype, sex, and age.

RESULTS:

The met-BDNF allele was associated with an 11% reduction in the volume of the hippocampal formation.

CONCLUSIONS:

In spite of a relatively small sample size, the presence of the met-BDNF allele was found associated with a reduced volume of the hippocampal formation in healthy volunteers and may represent a vulnerability factor for the development of disease processes associated with the dysfunction of this brain region.

PMID:
16442082
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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