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Psychiatry Res. 2001 Apr 10;106(2):95-111.

Effects of bupropion SR on anterior paralimbic function during waking and REM sleep in depression: preliminary findings using.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.


This study sought to clarify the effects of bupropion SR on anterior paralimbic function in depressed patients by studying changes in the activation of these structures from waking to REM sleep both before and after treatment. Twelve depressed patients underwent concurrent EEG sleep studies and [18F]fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose ([18F]-FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) scans during waking and during their second REM period of sleep before and after treatment with bupropion SR. Nine subjects completed pre- and post-treatment waking PET studies. Five subjects completed pre- and post-treatment waking and REM sleep PET studies. Bupropion SR treatment did not suppress electrophysiologic measures of REM sleep, nor did it alter an indirect measure of global metabolism during either waking or REM sleep. Bupropion SR treatment reversed the previously observed deficit in anterior cingulate, medial prefrontal cortex and right anterior insula activation from waking to REM sleep. In secondary analyses, this effect was related to a reduction in waking relative metabolism in these structures following treatment in the absence of a significant effect on REM sleep relative metabolism. The implications of these findings for the relative importance of anterior paralimbic function in REM sleep in depression and for the differential effects of anti-depressant treatment on brain function during waking vs. REM sleep are discussed.

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