Yohimbine-Induced Amygdala Activation in Pathological Gamblers: A Pilot Study

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Yohimbine-Induced Amygdala Activation in Pathological Gamblers: A Pilot Study

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Title: Yohimbine-Induced Amygdala Activation in Pathological Gamblers: A Pilot Study
Author: Tschibelu, Evelyne; Elman, Igor; Becerra, Lino Renan; Yamamoto, Rinah Tikvah; George, Edward E.; Borsook, David

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Citation: Elman, Igor, Lino Becerra, Evelyne Tschibelu, Rinah Yamamoto, Edward George, and David Borsook. 2012. Yohimbine-induced amygdala activation in pathological gamblers: a pilot study. PLoS ONE 7(2): e31118.
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Abstract: Rationale and Objectives: There is evidence that drug addiction is associated with increased physiological and psychological responses to stress. In this pilot functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study we assessed whether a prototype behavioral addiction, pathological gambling (PG), is likewise associated with an enhanced response to stress. Methods We induced stress by injecting yohimbine (0.2–0.3 mg/kg, IV), an alpha-2 adrenoceptor antagonist that elicits stress-like physiological and psychological effects in humans and in laboratory animals, to four subjects with PG and to five non-gamblers mentally healthy control subjects. Their fMRI brain responses were assessed along with subjective stress and gambling urges ratings. Results: Voxelwise analyses of data sets from individual subjects, utilizing generalized linear model approach, revealed significant left amygdala activation in response to yohimbine across all PG subjects. This amygdala effect was not observed in the five control individuals. Yohimbine elicited subjective stress ratings in both groups with greater (albeit not statically significantly) average response in the PG subjects. On the other hand, yohimbine did not induce urges to gamble. Conclusions: The present data support the hypothesis of brain sensitization to pharmacologically-induced stress in PG.
Published Version: doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031118
Other Sources: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3271103/pdf/
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Other Posted Material, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#LAA
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:8462347

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