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J Neural Transm. 2007;114(5):635-9. Epub 2007 Jan 18.

Midbrain serotonin transporter binding potential measured with [11C]DASB is affected by serotonin transporter genotype.

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  • 1Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET Center, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Homozygote carriers of two long (L) alleles of the serotonin transporter (5-HTT) regulatory region displayed in vitro a twofold increase in 5-HTT expression compared with carriers of one or two short (S) alleles. However, in vivo imaging studies yielded contradictory results. Recently, an A > G exchange leading to differential transcriptional activation of 5-HTT mRNA in lymphobalstoid cell lines was discovered in the 5-HTT regulatory region. In vitro and in vivo evidence suggests that [(11)C]DASB, a new 5-HTT ligand offers some advantages over the ligands used in previous studies in measuring 5-HTT density independent of synaptic levels of serotonin.

METHOD:

We assessed 5-HTT binding potential (BP (2)) in the midbrain of 19 healthy subjects with positron emission tomography and [(11)C]DASB. Accounting for the hypothesized functional similarity of L (G) and S in driving 5-HTT transcription, we assessed whether L (A) L (A) homozygotes display increased midbrain BP (2) compared with carriers of at least one S allele.

RESULTS:

BP (2) in the midbrain was significantly increased in L (A) L (A) homozygotes compared with carriers of at least one S allele. Interestingly, the genotype effect on the midbrain was significantly different from that on the thalamus and the amygdala where no group differences were detected.

CONCLUSIONS:

This in vivo study provides further evidence that subjects homozygous for the L (A) allele display increased expression of 5-HTT in the midbrain, the origin of central serotonergic projections.

PMID:
17225932
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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