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J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2007 Dec;27(6):698-702.

Effects of lithium on brain glucose metabolism in healthy men.

Author information

1
Department of Nuclear Medicine, Hokkaido University Graduate School of Medicine, N 15 W 7 Kita-ku, Sapporo, Japan. kohno@med.hokudai.ac.jp

Abstract

Lithium is clinically available for the treatment of mood disorders. However, it has remained unclear how lithium acts on the brain to produce its effects. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of chronic lithium on human brain activity using positron emission tomography and clarify the correlation between brain activity changes and cognitive functional changes as induced by chronic lithium administration. A total of 20 healthy male subjects (mean age, 32 +/- 6 years) underwent positron emission tomographic scans with F-fluorodeoxyglucose and a battery of neuropsychological tests at baseline condition and after 4 weeks of lithium administration. Brain metabolic data were analyzed using statistical parametric mapping. Lithium increased relative regional cerebral glucose metabolism (rCMRglc) in the bilateral dorsomedial frontal cortices including the anterior cingulate gyrus and decreased rCMRglc in the right cerebellum and left lingual gyrus/cuneus. There was no difference in any of the variables of cognitive functions between the baseline condition and after chronic lithium administration. There was no correlation between rCMRglc changes in any of the brain regions and individual variable changes in any of the neuropsychological tests. The results suggest that the effects of chronic lithium are associated with increased activity in the bilateral dorsomedial frontal cortices including the anterior cingulate gyrus and decreased activity in the right cerebellum and left lingual gyrus/cuneus.

PMID:
18004140
DOI:
10.1097/jcp.0b013e31815a23c2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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