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Am J Psychiatry. 2003 Oct;160(10):1887-9.

Reduction of brain dopamine concentration with dietary tyrosine plus phenylalanine depletion: an [11C]raclopride PET study.

Author information

1
Imperial College, School of Medicine, University Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, Oxford, UK.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Extracellular dopamine concentrations were estimated through measurement of [(11)C]raclopride binding with positron emission tomography after dietary manipulation of the dopamine precursors tyrosine and phenylalanine.

METHOD:

Healthy male subjects were scanned on two occasions: once after receiving a balanced amino acid drink and once after receiving a drink mixture from which tyrosine and phenylalanine were omitted.

RESULTS:

Dietary tyrosine and phenylalanine depletion increased [(11)C]raclopride binding in the striatum by a mean of 6%. The change in [(11)C]raclopride binding correlated significantly with the fall in the ratio of tyrosine and phenylalanine to large neutral amino acids.

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the first demonstration of an effect of a dietary manipulation on brain dopamine release in humans. This result provides support for the further investigation of the role of dietary manipulations in the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders.

PMID:
14514507
DOI:
10.1176/appi.ajp.160.10.1887
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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