Article

Dysregulation of endogenous opioid emotion regulation circuitry in major depression in women

Department of Psychiatry, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 48109-0720, USA.
Archives of General Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 13.75). 12/2006; 63(11):1199-208. DOI: 10.1001/archpsyc.63.11.1199
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT There is extensive evidence implicating dysfunctions in stress responses and adaptation to stress in the pathophysiological mechanism of major depressive disorder (MDD) in humans. Endogenous opioid neurotransmission activating mu-opioid receptors is involved in stress and emotion regulatory processes and has been further implicated in MDD.
To examine the involvement of mu-opioid neurotransmission in the regulation of affective states in volunteers with MDD and its relationship with clinical response to antidepressant treatment.
Measures of mu-opioid receptor availability in vivo (binding potential [BP]) were obtained with positron emission tomography and the mu-opioid receptor selective radiotracer carbon 11-labeled carfentanil during a neutral state. Changes in BP during a sustained sadness challenge were obtained by comparing it with the neutral state, reflecting changes in endogenous opioid neurotransmission during the experience of that emotion.
Clinics and neuroimaging facilities at a university medical center.
Fourteen healthy female volunteers and 14 individually matched patient volunteers diagnosed with MDD were recruited via advertisement and through outpatient clinics.
Sustained neutral and sadness states, randomized and counterbalanced in order, elicited by the cued recall of an autobiographical event associated with that emotion. Following imaging procedures, patients underwent a 10-week course of treatment with 20 to 40 mg of fluoxetine hydrochloride.
Changes in mu-opioid receptor BP during neutral and sustained sadness states, negative and positive affect ratings, plasma cortisol and corticotropin levels, and clinical response to antidepressant administration.
The sustained sadness condition was associated with a statistically significant decrease in mu-opioid receptor BP in the left inferior temporal cortex of patients with MDD and correlated with negative affect ratings experienced during the condition. Conversely, a significant increase in mu-opioid receptor BP was observed in healthy control subjects in the rostral region of the anterior cingulate. In this region, a significant decrease in mu-opioid receptor BP during sadness was observed in patients with MDD who did not respond to antidepressant treatment. Comparisons between patients with MDD and controls showed significantly lower neutral-state mu-opioid receptor BP in patients with MDD in the posterior thalamus, correlating with corticotropin and cortisol plasma levels. Larger reductions in mu-opioid system BP during sadness were obtained in patients with MDD in the anterior insular cortex, anterior and posterior thalamus, ventral basal ganglia, amygdala, and periamygdalar cortex. The same challenge elicited larger increases in the BP measure in the control group in the anterior cingulate, ventral basal ganglia, hypothalamus, amygdala, and periamygdalar cortex.
The results demonstrate differences between women with MDD and control women in mu-opioid receptor availability during a neutral state, as well as opposite responses of this neurotransmitter system during the experimental induction of a sustained sadness state. These data demonstrate that endogenous opioid neurotransmission on mu-opioid receptors, a system implicated in stress responses and emotional regulation, is altered in patients diagnosed with MDD.

0 Bookmarks
 · 
126 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Depression is characterized by disturbed sleep and eating, a variety of other nonspecific somatic symptoms, and significant somatic comorbidities. Why there is such close association between cognitive and somatic dysfunction in depression is nonetheless poorly understood. An explosion of research in the area of interoception—the perception and interpretation of bodily signals— over the last decade nonetheless holds promise for illuminating what have until now been obscure links between the social, cognitive–affective, and somatic features of depression. This article reviews rapidly accumulating evidence that both somatic signaling and interoception are frequently altered in depression. This includes comparative studies showing vagus-mediated effects on depression-like behaviors in rodent models as well as studies in humans indicating both dysfunction in the neural substrates for interoception (e.g., vagus, insula, anterior cingulate cortex) and reduced sensitivity to bodily stimuli in depression. An integrative framework for organizing and interpreting this evidence is put forward which incorporates (a) multiple potential pathways to interoceptive dysfunction; (b) interaction with individual, gender, and cultural differences in interoception; and (c) a developmental psychobiological systems perspective, emphasizing likely differential susceptibility to somatic and interoceptive dysfunction across the lifespan. Combined with current theory and evidence, it is suggested that core symptoms of depression (e.g., anhedonia, social deficits) may be products of disturbed interoceptive– exteroceptive integration. More research is nonetheless needed to fully elucidate the relationship between mind, body, and social context in depression.
    Psychological Bulletin 03/2015; 141(2):311-363. DOI:10.1037/a0038101 · 14.39 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A common criticism of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (American Psychiatric Association, 2013) is that its criteria are based more on behavioral descriptions than on underlying biological mechanisms. Increasingly, calls have intensified for a more biologically-based approach to conceptualizing, studying, and treating psychological disorders, as exemplified by the Research Domain Criteria Project (RDoC). Among the most well-studied neurobiological mechanisms is reward processing. Moreover, individual differences in reward sensitivity are related to risk for substance abuse and depression. The current review synthesizes the available preclinical, electrophysiological, and neuroimaging literature on reward processing from a transdiagnostic, multidimensional perspective. Findings are organized with respect to key reward constructs within the Positive Valence Systems domain of the RDoC matrix, including initial responsiveness to reward (physiological 'liking'), approach motivation (physiological 'wanting'), and reward learning/habit formation. The current review (a) describes the neural basis of reward, (b) elucidate differences in reward activity in substance abuse and depression, and (c) suggest a framework for integrating these disparate literatures and discuss the utility of shifting focus from diagnosis to process for understanding liability and co-morbidity. Ultimately, we believe that an integrative focus on abnormal reward functioning across the full continuum of clinically heterogeneous samples, rather than within circumscribed diagnostic categories, might actually help to refine the phenotype and improve the prediction of onset and recovery of these disorders. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    International journal of psychophysiology: official journal of the International Organization of Psychophysiology 02/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2015.01.011 · 3.05 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Sublingual formulations of buprenorphine (BUP) and BUP/naloxone have well-established pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic profiles, and are safe and effective for treating opioid use disorder. Since approvals of these formulations, their clinical use has increased. Yet, questions have arisen as to how BUP binding to mu-opioid receptors (μORs), the neurobiological target for this medication, relate to its clinical application. BUP produces dose- and time-related alterations of μOR availability but some clinicians express concern about whether doses higher than those needed to prevent opioid withdrawal symptoms are warranted, and policymakers consider limiting reimbursement for certain BUP dosing regimens.
    Drug and Alcohol Dependence 08/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2014.07.035 · 3.28 Impact Factor