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Am J Psychiatry. 2006 Dec;163(12):2189-92.

In vivo 1H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy study of amygdala-hippocampal and parietal regions in autism.

Author information

1
Section of Brain Maturation, Institute of Psychiatry, London.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The neural basis for autistic spectrum disorders is unclear, but abnormalities in the development of limbic areas and of glutamate have been suggested. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy ((1)H-MRS) can be used to measure the concentration of brain metabolites. However, the concentration of glutamate/glutamine in brain regions implicated in autistic spectrum disorders has not yet been examined in vivo.

METHOD:

The authors used (1)H-MRS to investigate the neuronal integrity of the amygdala-hippocampal complex and a parietal control region in adults with autistic spectrum disorders and healthy subjects.

RESULTS:

People with autistic spectrum disorders had a significantly higher concentration of glutamate/glutamine and creatine/phosphocreatine in the amygdala-hippocampal region but not in the parietal region.

CONCLUSIONS:

Abnormalities in glutamate/glutamine may partially underpin the pathophysiology of autistic spectrum disorders, and the authors confirm earlier reports that limbic areas are metabolically aberrant in these disorders.

PMID:
17151175
DOI:
10.1176/appi.ajp.163.12.2189
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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