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1.
Neuropsychopharmacology. 2010 Jan;35(1):192-216. doi: 10.1038/npp.2009.104.

Neurocircuitry of mood disorders.

Author information

1
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USA. pricej@wustl.edu

Abstract

This review begins with a brief historical overview of attempts in the first half of the 20th century to discern brain systems that underlie emotion and emotional behavior. These early studies identified the amygdala, hippocampus, and other parts of what was termed the 'limbic' system as central parts of the emotional brain. Detailed connectional data on this system began to be obtained in the 1970s and 1980s, as more effective neuroanatomical techniques based on axonal transport became available. In the last 15 years these methods have been applied extensively to the limbic system and prefrontal cortex of monkeys, and much more specific circuits have been defined. In particular, a system has been described that links the medial prefrontal cortex and a few related cortical areas to the amygdala, the ventral striatum and pallidum, the medial thalamus, the hypothalamus, and the periaqueductal gray and other parts of the brainstem. A large body of human data from functional and structural imaging, as well as analysis of lesions and histological material indicates that this system is centrally involved in mood disorders.

PMID:
19693001
PMCID:
PMC3055427
DOI:
10.1038/npp.2009.104
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
Icon for Nature Publishing Group Icon for PubMed Central
2.
Brain Struct Funct. 2008 Sep;213(1-2):93-118. doi: 10.1007/s00429-008-0189-x. Epub 2008 Aug 13.

Brain structural and functional abnormalities in mood disorders: implications for neurocircuitry models of depression.

Author information

1
Section on Neuroimaging in Mood and Anxiety Disorders, National Institute of Mental Health, National Institutes of Health (NIH/NIMH DIRP), 15K North Dr., Room 210, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA. drevetsw@mail.nih.gov

Abstract

The neural networks that putatively modulate aspects of normal emotional behavior have been implicated in the pathophysiology of mood disorders by converging evidence from neuroimaging, neuropathological and lesion analysis studies. These networks involve the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) and closely related areas in the medial and caudolateral orbital cortex (medial prefrontal network), amygdala, hippocampus, and ventromedial parts of the basal ganglia, where alterations in grey matter volume and neurophysiological activity are found in cases with recurrent depressive episodes. Such findings hold major implications for models of the neurocircuits that underlie depression. In particular evidence from lesion analysis studies suggests that the MPFC and related limbic and striato-pallido-thalamic structures organize emotional expression. The MPFC is part of a larger "default system" of cortical areas that include the dorsal PFC, mid- and posterior cingulate cortex, anterior temporal cortex, and entorhinal and parahippocampal cortex, which has been implicated in self-referential functions. Dysfunction within and between structures in this circuit may induce disturbances in emotional behavior and other cognitive aspects of depressive syndromes in humans. Further, because the MPFC and related limbic structures provide forebrain modulation over visceral control structures in the hypothalamus and brainstem, their dysfunction can account for the disturbances in autonomic regulation and neuroendocrine responses that are associated with mood disorders. This paper discusses these systems together with the neurochemical systems that impinge on them and form the basis for most pharmacological therapies.

PMID:
18704495
PMCID:
PMC2522333
DOI:
10.1007/s00429-008-0189-x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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