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Prefrontal grey-matter changes in short-term and long-term abstinent methamphetamine abusers

  • Seog Ju Kim (a1), In Kyoon Lyoo (a2) (a3), Jaeuk Hwang (a2), Ain Chung (a2) (a3), Young Hoon Sung (a2), Jihyun Kim (a2), Do-Hoon Kwon (a4), Kee Hyun Chang (a5) and Perry F. Renshaw (a6)...

Authors explored grey-matter density in 29 methamphetamine abusers and 20 healthy comparison subjects using voxel-based morphometry. Grey-matter density changes and performances on the Wisconsin Card Sorting test (WCST) were also compared between 11 short-term (<6 months) and 18 long-term ([ges ]6 months) abstinent methamphetamine abusers. Methamphetamine abusers had lower grey-matter density in the right middle frontal cortex (corrected p<0.05) and more total errors in the WCST (p<0.01) relative to healthy comparison subjects. Grey-matter density decrease in the right middle frontal cortex correlated with total errors in the WCST in methamphetamine abusers (r=−0.45). Long-term abstinent abusers had significantly less right middle frontal grey-matter density decrease (p<0.01) and total errors in the WCST (p<0.01) than short-term abstinent abusers, but more than the healthy comparison subjects. We report that methamphetamine abusers have prefrontal grey-matter deficit, which may, in part, recover with long-term abstinence.

Corresponding author
Department of Psychiatry, Seoul National University Hospital, 28 Yongon-dong, Chongno-gu, Seoul, 110-744, South Korea. Tel.: (82-2)-2072-3173 Fax: (82-2)-3672-0677 E-mail:
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This study was presented at the 2004 Annual Meeting of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence held at San Juan, Puerto Rico on 12–17 June 2004.
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The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology
  • ISSN: 1461-1457
  • EISSN: 1469-5111
  • URL: /core/journals/the-international-journal-of-neuropsychopharmacology
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