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Author: Jan Kalbitzer (13)


Aug
2014

The authors report the development of psychosis in a young woman coinciding with excessive use of the online communication system Twitter and the results of an experimental account to argue that Twitter may have a high potential to induce psychosis in predisposed users.

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Dec
2013

Molecular imaging studies with positron emission tomography have revealed that the availability of serotonin transporter (5-HTT) in the human brain fluctuates over the course of the year. This effect is most pronounced in carriers of the short allele of the 5-HTT promoter region (5-HTTLPR), which has in several previous studies been linked to an increased risk to develop mood disorders. We argue that long-lasting fluctuations in the cerebral serotonin transmission, which is regulated via the 5-HTT, are responsible for mediating responses to environmental changes based on an assessment of the expected "safety" of the environment; this response is obtained in part through serotonergic modulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.

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Sep
2012

Age-related decline in cognitive speed has been associated with prefrontal dopamine D1 receptor availability, but the contribution of presynaptic dopamine and noradrenaline innervation to age-related changes in cognition is unknown.
In a group of 16 healthy participants aged 22-61 years, we used PET and the radioligand FDOPA to measure catecholamine synthesis capacity (K (in) (app); millilitres per gram per minute) and the digit symbol substitution test to measure cognitive speed, a component of fluid IQ.
Cognitive speed was associated with the magnitude of K (in) (app) in the prefrontal cortex (p < 0.

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Jun
2013

Fluid intelligence represents the capacity for flexible problem solving and rapid behavioral adaptation. Rewards drive flexible behavioral adaptation, in part via a teaching signal expressed as reward prediction errors in the ventral striatum, which has been associated with phasic dopamine release in animal studies. We examined a sample of 28 healthy male adults using multimodal imaging and biological parametric mapping with (1) functional magnetic resonance imaging during a reversal learning task and (2) in a subsample of 17 subjects also with positron emission tomography using 6-[(18) F]fluoro-L-DOPA to assess dopamine synthesis capacity.

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Dec
2011

The human cerebrum is asymmetrical, consisting of two hemispheres with differing functions. Recent epidemiological and neurobiological research has shed new light on the development of the cerebral lateralization of motor processes, including handedness. In this article, we present these findings from a medical perspective.

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Feb
2011

We have previously reported decreased frontal cortical serotonin2A receptor binding in 30 antipsychotic naïve first-episode schizophrenic patients and a relationship between this binding and positive psychotic symptoms. Until now, no longitudinal studies of serotonin2A receptor in first-episode antipsychotic-naïve schizophrenia patients have reported on the relationship between serotonin2A receptor occupancy and treatment effect after sustained treatment with a specific atypical antipsychotic compound.
Here, we measured serotonin2A receptor occupancy with [(18)F]altanserin PET in 15 first-episode antipsychotic-naïve schizophrenia patients before and after 6 months of quetiapine treatment.

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Mar
2012

In patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), postmortem and imaging studies have revealed early and prominent reductions in cerebral serotonin 2A (5-HT(2A)) receptors. To establish if this was due to a selective disease process of the serotonin system, we investigated the cerebral 5-HT(2A) receptor and the serotonin transporter binding, the latter as a measure of serotonergic projections and neurons. Twelve patients with AD (average Mini Mental State Examination [MMSE]: 24) and 11 healthy age-matched subjects underwent positron emission tomography (PET) scanning with [(18)F]altanserin and [(11)C]N,N-Dimethyl-2-(2-amino-4-cyanopheylthio)benzylamine ([(11)C]DASB).

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May
2010

Neuropsychiatric symptoms of dementia like agitation, depression and apathy often result in increased prescriptions of psychotropics. In Germany, outpatient clinics at psychiatric hospitals play an important role in the treatment of neuropsychiatric symptoms in nursing homes. The aim of this study was to test whether the severity and pharmacotherapy differed in patients treated by outpatient clinics at psychiatric hospitals, as compared to primary care specialists.

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Mar
2010

Serotonergic neurotransmission is involved in the regulation of physiological functions such as mood, sleep, memory, and appetite. Within the serotonin transmitter system, both the postsynaptically located serotonin 2A (5-HT(2A)) receptor and the presynaptic serotonin transporter (SERT) are sensitive to chronic changes in cerebral 5-HT levels. Additionally, experimental studies suggest that alterations in either the 5-HT(2A) receptor or SERT level can affect the protein level of the counterpart.

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Jun
2010

A polymorphism in the promoter region of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) has been associated with seasonality both in patients with seasonal affective disorder and in the general population.
We used in vivo molecular imaging to measure cerebral serotonin transporter (5-HTT) binding in 57 healthy Scandinavians and related the outcome to season of the year and to the 5-HTTLPR carrier status.
We found that the number of daylight minutes at the time of scanning correlated negatively with 5-HTT binding in the putamen and the caudate, with a similar tendency in the thalamus, whereas this association was not observed for the midbrain.

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Jan
2010

Postmortem investigations and the receptor affinity profile of atypical antipsychotics have implicated the participation of serotonin(2A) receptors in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Most postmortem studies point toward lower cortical serotonin(2A) binding in schizophrenic patients. However, in vivo studies of serotonin(2A) binding report conflicting results, presumably because sample sizes have been small or because schizophrenic patients who were not antipsychotic-naive were included.

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Jun
2009

The purpose of this study was to develop a reliable observer-independent approach to delineating volumes of interest (VOIs) for functional brain regions that are not identifiable on structural MR images. The case is made for the raphé nuclei, a collection of nuclei situated in the brain stem known to be densely packed with serotonin transporters (5-hydroxytryptaminic [5-HTT] system).
A template set for the raphé nuclei, based on their high content of 5-HTT as visualized in parametric (11)C-labeled 3-amino-4-(2-dimethylaminomethyl-phenylsulfanyl)-benzonitrile PET images, was created for 10 healthy subjects.

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Apr
2009

Potentiation of serotonergic transmission increases cognitive flexibility, but can in other circumstances increase sensitivity to stressful environmental cues. The personality trait Openness to Experience reflects and is also associated with an increased risk for mood disorders. We hypothesized that the personality trait has an association with a biomarker of serotonergic transmission, the plasma membrane serotonin transporter (5-HTT).

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