To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
In this response, we address point by point the additional issues raised by Hieronymus et al. in their second round of critique of our systematic review on selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors for major depression. We repulse that we are biased or mistaken in any major ways. We acknowledge that we missed a few small, mostly unpublished trials, and we made a few minor errors in our systematic review. However, these omissions and errors neither have any impact on our overall results nor on our conclusions. The critique by Hieronymus et al. seems to raise questions about their understanding of the systematic review process, and, on several occasions, they wrongly claimed that we made errors. Our analyses should be impartial and free from any biases or prejudices as we do not have any obligation to support the interests of sponsors or other groups.
Road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death among young people. Recognition of the contribution of impulsive behaviour may help novice drivers to behave more safely. Previously a brief intervention focusing on impulsive traffic behaviour conducted by psychologists in driving schools had been effective. The aim of this study was an independent re-evaluation of the effect of the intervention, as conducted by driving school teachers, and assessment of the potential associations with candidate genotypes.
Driving school students (mean age 22.5, SD=7.9) were divided into intervention (n=704) and control (n=737) groups. Driving school teachers were trained to administer the intervention which consisted of a lecture and group work (1.5 h in total) on impulsivity. Traffic offences and crashes were monitored during 3 years, using police and traffic insurance fund databases. Functional polymorphisms of the dopamine transporter (DAT) and serotonin transporter genes (DAT1 VNTR and 5-HTTLPR) were assessed.
The intervention significantly lowered general traffic risk and prevalence of traffic accidents. DAT1 VNTR 9R carriers, particularly males, had higher general traffic risk in the whole sample. Female 5-HTTLPR s’ allele carriers of the intervention group had the lowest general traffic risk. Intervention was most effective in female DAT1 VNTR 10R/10R homozygotes.
Brief impulsivity-centred intervention appears as a promising strategy for preventing risk-taking behaviour in novice drivers and can be fully integrated to driving school curriculum.
Studies examining associations between fetal serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SRI) exposure and child autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnoses or delayed language remain mixed and rarely prospectively follow children or employ gold-standard assessments. We prospectively followed a cohort of mother–child dyads from pregnancy through early elementary school (N = 178), and obtained maternal and alternate–caregiver ratings of behaviors related to ASD (N = 137), as well as direct, gold-standard assessments of child ASD symptoms and pragmatic language among dyads who experienced prenatal depression and either took SRIs or were medication free during pregnancy (N = 44). Prenatal SRI exposure was related to maternal ratings of ASD-related behaviors (β = 0.24 95% confidence interval; CI [0.07, 0.48]), and, among boys, alternative caregiver ratings (males-only β = 0.28 95% CI [0.02, 0.55], females-only β = −0.21 95% CI [–0.63, 0.08]). However, results of our direct assessments suggest an association between SRI exposure and reduced pragmatic language scores (β = –0.27, 95% CI [–0.53, –0.01], but not ASD (Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule β = 0.14 95% CI [–0.15, 0.41]; Social Responsiveness Scale β = 0.08 95% CI [–0.25, 0.40]). These discrepancies point to issues regarding how ASD is assessed, and the possibility that SRIs may be more strongly associated with language or other broader behaviors that coincide with ASD. Larger prospective studies that incorporate thorough, gold-standard assessments of ASD, language, and other ASD-related behaviors are needed.
Heritability of antisocial behaviour is estimated at approximately 50% and involves multiple genes.
To investigate the cumulative genetic effects of 116 single nucleotide polymorphisms mapping to 11 candidate serotonergic genes and antisocial behaviours, in adolescence and in early adulthood.
Participants were 410 male members of the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Kindergarten Children, a population-based cohort followed up prospectively from age 6 to age 23. The serotonergic genes were selected based on known physiological processes and prior associations with antisocial behaviours. Antisocial behaviours were self-reported and assessed by using semi-structured interviews in adolescence and in adulthood.
Cumulative, haplotype-based contributions of serotonergic genes conferring risk and protection for antisocial behaviours were detected by using multilocus genetic profile risk scores (MGPRSs) and multilocus genetic profile protection scores (MGPPSs). Cumulatively, haplotype-based MGPRSs and MGPPSs contributed to 9.6, 8.5 and 15.2% of the variance in general delinquency in adolescence, property/violent crimes in early adulthood and physical partner violence in early adulthood, respectively.
This study extends previous research by showing a cumulative effect of multiple haplotypes conferring risk and protection to antisocial behaviours in adolescence and early adulthood. The findings further support the relevance of concomitantly considering multiple serotonergic polymorphisms to better understand the genetic aetiology of antisocial behaviours. Future studies should investigate the interplay between risk and protective haplotype-based multilocus genetic profile scores with the environment.
Declaration of interest:
I.O.-M. holds a Canada Research Chair in the developmental origins of vulnerability and resilience.
Previous studies have shown the anthelmintic efficacy of Senna alata, Senna alexandrina and Senna occidentalis on the zoonotic parasite Hymenolepis diminuta through microscopic studies on morphological structure. The present study is based on the light and confocal microscopic studies to understand if Senna extracts affect neurotransmitter activity of the parasites. A standard concentration (40 mg/mL) of the three leaf extracts and one set of 0.005 mg/mL concentration of the reference drug praziquantel were tested against the parasites, keeping another set of parasites in phosphate buffer saline as a control. Histochemical studies were carried out using acetylthiocholine iodide as the substrate and acetylcholinesterase as the marker enzyme for studying the expression of the neurotransmitter of the parasite and the staining intensity was observed under a light microscope. Immunohistochemical studies were carried out using anti serotonin primary antibody and fluorescence tagged secondary antibody and observed using confocal microscopy. Intensity of the stain decreases in treated parasites compared with the control which implies loss of activity of the neurotransmitters. These observations indicated that Senna have a strong anthelmintic effect on the parasite model and thus pose as a potential anthelmintic therapy.
Whereas long-term administration of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) is effective for the treatment of anxiety disorders, acute administration of these drugs may exert a paradoxical anxiogenic effect. The aim of the present study was to explore the possible effect of an SSRI in situations of unconditioned or limited conditioned fear.
Male Sprague Dawley rats were administered a single dose of an SSRI, escitalopram, before acquisition or expression of context conditioned fear, where noise bursts were used as the unconditioned stimulus. Freezing was assessed as a measure of unconditioned fear (=the acute response to noise bursts) or conditioned fear (=the response to the context), respectively.
Noise bursts elicited an acute increase in freezing but no robust conditioned response 7 days after exposure. Administration of escitalopram before testing exacerbated the freezing response during presentation of the unconditioned stimulus and also unmasked a conditioned response; in contrast, administration of escitalopram prior to acquisition did not influence the conditioned response.
The data suggest that freezing in rats exposed to a stimulus inducing relatively mild fear may be enhanced by acute pretreatment with an SSRI regardless of whether the freezing displayed by the animals is an acute unconditioned response to the stimulus in question or a conditioned response to the same stimulus.
Computational neuroscience uses formal models of brain function to characterize the mechanisms behind behavioral problems. The production of false beliefs and their behavioral consequences are a central issue in such models. Hopelessness and suicidal thoughts are examples of such false beliefs that commonly lead to suicidal behavior as a consequence. In normal everyday life, people update their beliefs based on what they perceive: bottom-up sensory inputs are compared with top-down beliefs, and mismatches are signaled as prediction errors. Neurobiological correlates of belief updating are increasingly demonstrated. Cortical activations as demonstrated in functional neuroimaging studies, such as those reported in Chapter 6, thus reflect the production of prediction errors that signal a mismatch between beliefs and perceptual information. These errors can be minimized in several ways: beliefs can be updated, or sensory input can be minimized by withdrawal into oneself or escape from this world. If something goes wrong in this process of belief updating, false beliefs may develop and persist despite perceptual proof of the opposite. This chapter will describe a predictive coding model of suicidal behavior, in which findings from neurocognitive, neuroimaging, and neurobiological studies can be integrated. This model leads to a new understanding of suicide and, consequently, to new approaches to prevention.
Results from a range of studies using diverse designs and both postmortem and in-vivo techniques show impairments in the serotonin neurotransmitter system and the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis stress-response system in the vulnerability to suicidal behaviour. The involvement of serotonin in the development of suicidal behavior is well known since the 1970s when low levels of serotonin metabolites in the cerebrospinal fluid of suicide attempters were demonstrated. This involvement has been confirmed in numerous subsequent postmortem and in-vivo neuroimaging studies. For example, molecular imaging studies have localized lower binding to the serotonin transporter in areas of the brain, such as the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, which are known to be involved in decision-making processes. Serotonergic impairments may also manifest as impaired cognitive control of mood, pessimism, impaired problem solving, increased reactivity to negative social signs, excessive emotional pain, and suicidal ideation, leading to suicidal behavior.
Funded by the Danish state to provide guidance in health-related matters, the Copenhagen Trial Unit (CTU) at Rigshospitalet may cause considerable societal harm if allowing their analyses to be influenced by bias and prejudice rather than rigor and impartiality. This is why we found it worthwhile to comment on a report from the CTU in which the authors invoked analyses marred by numerous errors and methodological mistakes to claim that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are harmful and ineffective. The CTU group has now produced a response to our comment which is on par with their original contribution in terms of bias, misconceptions and mistakes. Our conclusion is that the reputation of the CTU would be best served by the authors asking for retraction of their SSRI paper.
Our systematic review in BMC Psychiatry concluded that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) compared with placebo significantly increase the risk of serious adverse events (SAEs) in patients with major depression and the potential beneficial effects of SSRIs seem to be outweighed by the harms. Hieronymus et al. accused us of methodological inaccuracies and blatant errors. In their post-hoc analysis of our data, they reported that SSRIs only increase the risk of SAEs in elderly and seems safe for non-elderly patients. They also found our review misleading because our efficacy analyses were based on the 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale; we included suboptimal SSRI doses; and we missed some ‘pivotal trials’. We do not agree with Hieronymus et al. regarding several of the ‘errors’ they claim that we have made. However, we acknowledge that they have identified minor errors and that we missed some trials. After rectifying the errors and inclusion of the missed trials by us and Hieronymus et al., we re-analysed the data. The updated analyses are even more robust and confirm our earlier conclusions. SSRIs significantly increase the risk of an SAE both in non-elderly (p=0.045) and elderly (p=0.01) patients [overall odds ratio 1.39; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.13 to 1.73; p=0.002; I2=0%]. Moreover, SSRIs did not change noticeably the 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, the internationally accepted scale (mean difference −2.02 points; 95% CI −2.38 to −1.66; p<0.00001). We found no differential effect of dose (p=0.20).
Numerous studies have shown that providing straw to pigs can reduce undesirable behaviours such as aggression, tail biting and stereotypy. The measurement of various neuromodulators can be helpful in assessing the development of positive behaviours and overall animal welfare. The oxytocin release is frequently linked to positive emotions and positive welfare. It has been suggested that oxytocin modulates the serotoninergic system. This study aims to investigate the potential effect of straw provision in pigs on peripheral levels of oxytocin and serotonin. In total, 18 mini-pigs were involved in an exploratory study conducted in two parallel groups, Enriched (n=10) and Control (n=8) groups. Pigs were divided by group and housed in pens of two individuals. Straw was provided continuously only in Enriched group and renewed each day for 2 weeks. Two blood samples were drawn from each animal 5 to 10 min before providing the straw, and 15 min after providing straw, during the 1st week, to analyse peripheral changes in oxytocin and serotonin before and after straw provision, and determine the existence of a putative short-term effect. The same procedure was carried out for Control group, without straw provision. Long-term effects of straw provision were also examined using blood samples drawn at the same hour from each animal in the 2nd and 3rd weeks. During this time, animals had the permanent possibility to explore the straw in Enriched group but not in Control group. At the end of each week, one animal-keeper completed two visual analogue scales for each mini-pig regarding the difficulty/ease to work with and handle it and its trust in humans. Results showed peripheral oxytocin increases in both groups after 2 weeks (P=0.02). Results did not demonstrate any effect of providing straw to allow exploratory behaviour on peripheral serotonin. Other results were not significant. This preliminary study explored the relationship between peripheral oxytocin and serotonin and the presence of straw that allow pigs to perform exploratory behaviour, suggesting that there was no relationship between them. Some future studies may include crossing oxytocin and serotonin with other parameters, such as behavioural measures, to obtain more information about the true state of the animal and any possible relationship with pig welfare.
Background: Secondary neurotransmitter deficiencies have been reported in several reviews. Our primary aim was to assess the relationship among epilepsy, antiseizure medications, and specific neurotransmitter abnormalities. We also evaluated movement disorders and brain abnormalities via magnetic resonance imaging scans in patients with secondary neurotransmitter defects. Methods: This is a retrospective case series of 376 patients who underwent neurotransmitter analysis at BC Children’s Hospital between 2009 and 2013, for a variety of neurological presentations. The biochemical genetics laboratory database was interrogated for results of cerebrospinal fluid neurotransmitter analyses. Clinical data for patients with abnormal results were collected from the hospital charts. Statistical analysis included one-way analysis of variance, chi-square, and a two-way contingency table. Results: Abnormal neurotransmitter values were identified in 67 (17.8%) patients, two (0.53%) of which were attributable to a congenital neurotransmitter disorder and 11 (16.9%) secondary to other genetic diagnoses. Of 64 patients with secondary abnormal neurotransmitter values, 38 (59%) presented with epilepsy and 20 (31%) with movement disorders. A combination of epilepsy and movement disorder was less frequent. Discussion: Acknowledging the limitations of this retrospective chart review, we conclude that, in our cohort, in addition to patients with movement disorders, a considerable number of patients with epilepsy and epileptic encephalopathy also showed secondary neurotransmitter mono-amine abnormalities. There is no clear relation, however, between clinical phenotype and type of neurotransmitter affected. In addition, no association was identified between the type of antiseizure medications and affected neurotransmitter type. We outline the need for prospective studies to further enrich our understanding of the relation between epilepsy and neurotransmitters with a focus on improving treatments and patient outcomes.
According to a systematic review on the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in adult depression that was recently published in BMC Psychiatry, the results of which have been widely disseminated in lay media, these drugs increase the risk for serious adverse events (SAEs) while exerting poor antidepressant efficacy. A cursory analysis, however, suggests the analysis of SAEs conducted by the authors to be marred by both methodological inaccuracies and blatant errors. After having corrected for these apparent mistakes, we conducted a sensitivity analysis in which we also accounted for a possible moderating effect of age; while this suggests SSRIs to be safe drugs in the non-elderly, they do confirm what is already known, that is, that they may enhance the risk for SAEs in the old. Given the loose definition of SAE, including also innocuous phenomena, the possible clinical significance of the latter observation, however, remains unclear until the nature and actual impact of the SAEs in question have been clarified. Moreover, with respect to efficacy, we find the paper in BMC Psychiatry misleading: first, the authors seem unaware of the well-established shortcomings associated with the conventional efficacy parameter on which their analysis is based, second, they have included suboptimal SSRI doses and third, they have missed some pivotal trials. Unless there are explanations for the many peculiarities in this paper that have escaped us, and which may be satisfactorily clarified by the authors, it seems important that the conclusions presented in this paper be publicly rectified.
Intense effort is directed toward searching for associations between genes and neuropsychological measures of executive functions. In contrast, the impact of genetic polymorphisms on self-rating of everyday executive functioning has not been investigated so far. This study was designed to test associations of self-reported executive functioning, measured with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF-A), with dopaminergic and serotoninergic genes in non-clinical population and to assess impact of neuropsychological and personality characteristics on these associations. One hundred healthy adults completed the BRIEF-A, personality inventories SPQ-74, STAI, MMPI, and neuropsychological tests for executive functions. Polymorphisms in the DRD4, COMT, DRD2, HTR2A, and SLC6A4 genes were genotyped. We revealed a significant main effect of the SLC6A4’s 5-HTTLPR polymorphism on BRIEF-A scores (F = 2.21, P = .018, η2 = .24). Among the BRIEF-A measures, the genotype effect was significant for the Plan/Organize (F = 7.34, P = .008, η2 = .07) and Task Monitor scales (F = 4.33, P = .04, η2 = .04), and the Metacognition index (F = 4.21, P = .043, η2 = .04). Carriers of the short allele reported fewer problems than homozygotes for the long allele. Correlations of the BRIEF-A measures with neuropsychological variables were weak, while those with personality characteristics were strong, with trait anxiety being the most powerful predictor of the BRIEF-A scores. However, the relationship between the 5-HTTLPR and BRIEF-A scores remained significant when trait anxiety was controlled for. The results suggest a potential role of the 5-HTTLPR in self-reported everyday task planning and monitoring.
Hyperlipidaemia is a major cause of atherosclerosis and related CVD and can be prevented with natural substances. Previously, we reported that a novel Bacillus-fermented green tea (FGT) exerts anti-obesity and hypolipidaemic effects. This study further investigated the hypotriglyceridaemic and anti-obesogenic effects of FGT and its underlying mechanisms. FGT effectively inhibited pancreatic lipase activity in vitro (IC50, 0·48 mg/ml) and ameliorated postprandial lipaemia in rats (26 % reduction with 500 mg/kg FGT). In hypertriglyceridaemic hamsters, FGT administration significantly reduced plasma TAG levels. In mice, FGT administration (500 mg/kg) for 2 weeks augmented energy expenditure by 22 % through the induction of plasma serotonin, a neurotransmitter that modulates energy expenditure and mRNA expressions of lipid metabolism genes in peripheral tissues. Analysis of the gut microbiota showed that FGT reduced the proportion of the phylum Firmicutes in hamsters, which could further contribute to its anti-obesity effects. Collectively, these data demonstrate that FGT decreases plasma TAG levels via multiple mechanisms including inhibition of pancreatic lipase, augmentation of energy expenditure, induction of serotonin secretion and alteration of gut microbiota. These results suggest that FGT may be a useful natural agent for preventing hypertriglyceridaemia and obesity.
This study examined the chronic effects of aripiprazole and cariprazine on serotonin (5-HT1A and 5-HT2A) and glutamate (NMDA and AMPA) receptor subtypes. In addition, the effects of aripiprazole on D2 and D3 receptors were tested and compared with previously reported cariprazine data.
Rats received vehicle, aripiprazole (2, 5, or 15 mg/kg), or cariprazine (0.06, 0.2, or 0.6 mg/kg) for 28 days. Receptor levels were quantified using autoradiographic assays on brain sections from the medial prefrontal cortex (MPC), dorsolateral frontal cortex (DFC), nucleus accumbens (NAc), caudate-putamen medial (CPu–M), caudate-putamen lateral (CPu–L), hippocampal CA1 (HIPP–CA1) and CA3 (HIPP–CA3) regions, and the entorhinal cortex (EC).
Similar to previous findings with cariprazine, aripiprazole upregulated D2 receptor levels in various regions; D3 receptor changes were less than those reported with cariprazine. All aripiprazole doses and higher cariprazine doses increased 5-HT1A receptors in the MPC and DFC. Higher aripiprazole and all cariprazine doses increased 5-HT1A receptors in HIPP–CA1 and HIPP–CA3. Aripiprazole decreased 5-HT2A receptors in the MPC, DFC, HIPP–CA1, and HIPP–CA3 regions. Both compounds decreased NMDA receptors and increased AMPA receptors in select brain regions.
Long-term administration of aripiprazole and cariprazine had similar effects on 5-HT1A, NMDA, and AMPA receptors. However, cariprazine more profoundly increased D3 receptors while aripiprazole selectively reduced 5-HT2A receptors. These results suggest that the unique actions of cariprazine on dopamine D3 receptors, combined with its effects on serotonin and glutamate receptor subtypes, may confer the clinical benefits, safety, and tolerability of this novel compound in schizophrenia and bipolar mania.
In rodents, the striatal dopamine (DA) system and the (hypo)thalamic serotonin (5-HT) system are involved in the regulation of feeding behavior. In lean humans, little is known about the relationship between these brain neurotransmitter systems and feeding. We studied the relationship between striatal DA transporters (DAT) and diencephalic 5-HT transporters (SERT), behavioral tasks and questionnaires, and food intake.
We measured striatal DAT and diencephalic SERT binding with [123I]FP-CIT SPECT in 36 lean male subjects. Visual attention bias for food (detection speed and distraction time) and degree of impulsivity were measured using response-latency-based computer tasks. Craving and emotional eating were assessed with questionnaires and ratings of hunger by means of VAS scores. Food intake was assessed through a self-reported online diet journal.
Striatal DAT and diencephalic SERT binding negatively correlated with food detection speed (p = 0.008, r = −0.50 and p = 0.002, r = −0.57, respectively), but not with food distraction time, ratings of hunger, craving or impulsivity. Striatal DAT and diencephalic SERT binding did not correlate with free choice food intake, whereas food detection speed positively correlated with total caloric intake (p = 0.001, r = 0.60), protein intake (p = 0.01, r = 0.44), carbohydrate intake (p = 0.03, r = 0.39) and fat intake (p = 0.06, r = 0.35).
These results indicate a role for the central 5-HT and DA system in the regulation of visual attention bias for food, which contributes to the motivation to eat, in non-obese, healthy humans. In addition, this study confirms that food detection speed, measured with the latency-based computer task, positively correlates with total food and macronutrient intake.
Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is a potent serotonergic hallucinogen or psychedelic that modulates consciousness in a marked and novel way. This study sought to examine the acute and mid-term psychological effects of LSD in a controlled study.
A total of 20 healthy volunteers participated in this within-subjects study. Participants received LSD (75 µg, intravenously) on one occasion and placebo (saline, intravenously) on another, in a balanced order, with at least 2 weeks separating sessions. Acute subjective effects were measured using the Altered States of Consciousness questionnaire and the Psychotomimetic States Inventory (PSI). A measure of optimism (the Revised Life Orientation Test), the Revised NEO Personality Inventory, and the Peter's Delusions Inventory were issued at baseline and 2 weeks after each session.
LSD produced robust psychological effects; including heightened mood but also high scores on the PSI, an index of psychosis-like symptoms. Increased optimism and trait openness were observed 2 weeks after LSD (and not placebo) and there were no changes in delusional thinking.
The present findings reinforce the view that psychedelics elicit psychosis-like symptoms acutely yet improve psychological wellbeing in the mid to long term. It is proposed that acute alterations in mood are secondary to a more fundamental modulation in the quality of cognition, and that increased cognitive flexibility subsequent to serotonin 2A receptor (5-HT2AR) stimulation promotes emotional lability during intoxication and leaves a residue of ‘loosened cognition’ in the mid to long term that is conducive to improved psychological wellbeing.
Serotonin is under-researched in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), despite accumulating evidence for its involvement in impulsiveness and the disorder. Serotonin further modulates temporal discounting (TD), which is typically abnormal in ADHD relative to healthy subjects, underpinned by reduced fronto-striato-limbic activation. This study tested whether a single acute dose of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) fluoxetine up-regulates and normalizes reduced fronto-striato-limbic neurofunctional activation in ADHD during TD.
Twelve boys with ADHD were scanned twice in a placebo-controlled randomized design under either fluoxetine (between 8 and 15 mg, titrated to weight) or placebo while performing an individually adjusted functional magnetic resonance imaging TD task. Twenty healthy controls were scanned once. Brain activation was compared in patients under either drug condition and compared to controls to test for normalization effects.
Repeated-measures whole-brain analysis in patients revealed significant up-regulation with fluoxetine in a large cluster comprising right inferior frontal cortex, insula, premotor cortex and basal ganglia, which further correlated trend-wise with TD performance, which was impaired relative to controls under placebo, but normalized under fluoxetine. Fluoxetine further down-regulated default mode areas of posterior cingulate and precuneus. Comparisons between controls and patients under either drug condition revealed normalization with fluoxetine in right premotor-insular-parietal activation, which was reduced in patients under placebo.
The findings show that a serotonin agonist up-regulates activation in typical ADHD dysfunctional areas in right inferior frontal cortex, insula and striatum as well as down-regulating default mode network regions in the context of impulsivity and TD.
In mammals, short photoperiod is associated with high depression- and anxiety-like behaviours with low levels of the brain serotonin and its precursor tryptophan (Trp). Because the brain Trp levels are regulated by its ratio to large neutral amino acids (Trp:LNAA) in circulation, this study elucidated whether diets of various protein sources that contain different Trp:LNAA affect depression- and anxiety-like behaviours in C57BL/6J mice under short-day conditions (SD). In the control mice on a casein diet, time spent in the central area in the open field test (OFT) was lower in the mice under SD than in those under long-day conditions (LD), indicating that SD exposure induces anxiety-like behaviour. The SD-induced anxiety-like behaviour was countered by an α-lactalbumin diet given under SD. In the mice that were on a gluten diet before transition to SD, the time spent in the central area in the OFT under SD was higher than that in the SD control mice. Alternatively, mice that ingested soya protein before the transition to SD had lower immobility in the forced swim test, a depression-like behaviour, compared with the SD control. Analysis of Trp:LNAA revealed lower Trp:LNAA in the SD control compared with the LD control, which was counteracted by an α-lactalbumin diet under SD. Furthermore, mice on gluten or soya protein diets before transition to SD exhibited high Trp:LNAA levels in plasma under SD. In conclusion, ingestion of specific proteins at different times relative to photoperiodic transition may modulate anxiety- and/or depression-like behaviours, partially through changes in plasma Trp:LNAA.