Article

Increased amygdala response to positive social feedback in young people with major depressive disorder.

Orygen Youth Health Research Centre, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
Biological psychiatry (Impact Factor: 9.47). 04/2011; 69(8):734-41. DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2010.12.004
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Studies of depressed patients have demonstrated increased amygdala activation to negative affective stimuli. In this study, we used a paradigm that employed personally relevant social stimuli, which are known to strongly activate the amygdala, to test whether the amygdala demonstrated aberrant activity in depressed participants as they responded to stimuli with positive valence.
Nineteen patients with major depressive disorder, aged 15 to 24 years, were matched with 20 healthy control participants. They completed a novel functional magnetic resonance imaging task in which they received social feedback from people who they believed had evaluated them. Voxelwise statistical parametric maps of brain response to positive social feedback and to a control feedback condition were compared to test the hypothesis that differences in neural response between depressed and control participants would arise in the amygdala.
Depressed participants showed increased neural response to the positive- versus control-feedback condition in the amygdala (p < .05, corrected). An exploratory analysis showed that depressed participants responded to faces from both feedback conditions with increased activity in regions subserving social appraisal (ventrolateral prefrontal cortex and inferior parietal cortex) and affective processing (pregenual anterior cingulate cortex and anterior insular cortex; p < .001, uncorrected).
Depressed patients responded to positive social feedback with increased amygdala activation, demonstrating that amygdala hyperresponsivity in depression is not restricted to negatively-valenced stimuli. The heightened sensitivity of depressed participants to social evaluation may help explain symptoms of depression such as social withdrawal.

Full-text

Available from: Murat Yucel, Jun 16, 2015
0 Followers
 · 
146 Views
  • From Symptom to Synapse: A Neurocognitive Perspective on Clinical Psychology, 1 edited by J. Mohlman; T. Deckersbach; & A. Weissman, 01/2015: chapter 8: pages 211-246; Routledge.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective: Despite significant advances in neuroscience and treatment development, no widely accepted biomarkers are available to inform diagnostics or identify preferred treatments for individuals with major depressive disorder. Method: In this critical review, the authors examine the extent to which multimodal neuroimaging techniques can identify biomarkers reflecting key pathophysiologic processes in depression and whether such biomarkers may act as predictors, moderators, and mediators of treatment response that might facilitate development of personalized treatments based on a better understanding of these processes. Results: The authors first highlight the most consistent findings from neuroimaging studies using different techniques in depression, including structural and functional abnormalities in two parallel neural circuits: serotonergically modulated implicit emotion regulation circuitry, centered on the amygdala and different regions in the medial prefrontal cortex; and dopaminergically modulated reward neural circuitry, centered on the ventral striatum and medial prefrontal cortex. They then describe key findings from the relatively small number of studies indicating that specific measures of regional function and, to a lesser extent, structure in these neural circuits predict treatment response in depression. Conclusions: Limitations of existing studies include small sample sizes, use of only one neuroimaging modality, and a focus on identifying predictors rather than moderators and mediators of differential treatment response. By addressing these limitations and, most importantly, capitalizing on the benefits of multimodal neuroimaging, future studies can yield moderators and mediators of treatment response in depression to facilitate significant improvements in shorter- and longer-term clinical and functional outcomes.
    American Journal of Psychiatry 02/2015; 172(2):124-138. DOI:10.1176/appi.ajp.2014.14010076 · 13.56 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Depression is the most common psychiatric disorder in adolescence, and is characterised by an inability to down-regulate negative emotional responses to stress. Adult studies suggest this may be associated with reduced functional connectivity between prefrontal and subcortical regions, yet the neurological mechanisms in adolescence remain unclear. We developed a novel, age-appropriate, reappraisal paradigm to investigate functional connectivity during reappraisal of a real-life source of stress in 15 depressed and 15 non-depressed adolescents. During fMRI, participants i) attended to, and ii) implemented reappraisal techniques (learnt prior to fMRI) in response to, rejection. Reappraisal reduced negative mood and belief in negative thoughts in both groups alike, however during reappraisal (versus attend) trials, depressed adolescents showed greater connectivity between the right frontal pole and numerous subcortical and cortical regions than non-depressed adolescents. These findings tentatively suggest that, when instructed, depressed adolescents do have the ability to engage neural networks involved in emotion regulation, possibly because adolescence reflects a period of heightened plasticity. These data support the value of cognitive reappraisal as a treatment tool, identify neural markers that could be used to optimise current therapies, and lay the foundations for developing novel neuroscientific techniques for the treatment of adolescent depression. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Journal of Psychiatric Research 12/2014; 61. DOI:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2014.11.016 · 4.09 Impact Factor