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Exp Neurobiol. 2016 Dec;25(6):277-295. doi: 10.5607/en.2016.25.6.277. Epub 2016 Nov 23.

Molecular Neuroimaging in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.

Author information

1
Ewha Brain Institute, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea.; Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience, College of Natural Sciences, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea.
2
Ewha Brain Institute, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea.; Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea.
3
Ewha Brain Institute, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea.; College of Pharmacy and Division of Life and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 03760, Korea.

Abstract

Over the past decade, an increasing number of neuroimaging studies have provided insight into the neurobiological mechanisms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PSTD). In particular, molecular neuroimaging techniques have been employed in examining metabolic and neurochemical processes in PTSD. This article reviews molecular neuroimaging studies in PTSD and focuses on findings using three imaging modalities including positron emission tomography (PET), single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), and magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). Although there were some inconsistences in the findings, patients with PTSD showed altered cerebral metabolism and perfusion, receptor bindings, and metabolite profiles in the limbic regions, medial prefrontal cortex, and temporal cortex. Studies that have investigated brain correlates of treatment response are also reviewed. Lastly, the limitations of the molecular neuroimaging studies and potential future research directions are discussed.

KEYWORDS:

Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS); Molecular neuroimaging; Positron emission tomography (PET); Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD); Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)

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