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Neuroimage. 2006 Apr 1;30(2):452-61. Epub 2005 Dec 2.

Sex-related differences in amygdala functional connectivity during resting conditions.

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  • 1Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, University of CA, Irvine, CA 92697-4550, USA. lkilpat@uci.edu

Abstract

Recent neuroimaging studies have established a sex-related hemispheric lateralization of amygdala involvement in memory for emotionally arousing material. Here, we examine the possibility that sex-related differences in amygdala involvement in memory for emotional material develop from differential patterns of amygdala functional connectivity evident in the resting brain. Seed voxel partial least square analyses of regional cerebral blood flow data revealed significant sex-related differences in amygdala functional connectivity during resting conditions. The right amygdala was associated with greater functional connectivity in men than in women. In contrast, the left amygdala was associated with greater functional connectivity in women than in men. Furthermore, the regions displaying stronger functional connectivity with the right amygdala in males (sensorimotor cortex, striatum, pulvinar) differed from those displaying stronger functional connectivity with the left amygdala in females (subgenual cortex, hypothalamus). These differences in functional connectivity at rest may link to sex-related differences in medical and psychiatric disorders.

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