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High sensation seeking men have increased dopamine binding in the right putamen during gambling, determined from raclopride binding potentials

Poster Presentation No.: 117
High sensation seeking men have increased dopamine binding in the right putamen
during gambling, determined from raclopride binding potentials
Ericka Peterson, A. Gjedde, A. Rodell, P. Cumming, A. Moller, J. Linnet
University of Aarhus, Denmark
Background: High sensation seekers (SS) have a lower activity in the dopaminergic system which may make them susceptible to dopamine
(DA)-enhancing stimulants such as amphetamine (Zuckerman, 1994), and possibly gambling (Koepp et al., 1998).
Objective: Raclopride binding potential (pB) in High SS men compared to Low and Medium SS was evaluated in a control version and a
gambling version of the Iowa Gambling Task. High SS were classified as scoring 25 or higher on the Zuckerman Sensation Seeking Scale
(SSS), Low SS as scoring 14 or lower, with Medium SS scoring in between.
Methods: Dynamic emission recordings were obtained during 60 min after i.v. raclopride (168369 MBq, mean = 318.52, SD = 49.36) using
the ECAT HR tomography. Maps of raclopride pB were calculated by the Logan tissue reference method with the cerebellum serving as
reference and the mean binding potential (pB) calculated in templates for the putamen.
Results: High SS had a statistically significant lower raclopride binding potential in the right putamen during gambling (mean TSD: 3.0 T0.1
vs. 2.9 T0.1, t= 2.84, P= 0.025), suggesting increased DA occupancy of the D2 and D3 receptors. No significant changes in binding
potential were observed in Low or Medium SS. The change in binding potential (pB = contrast-gambling task) in the right putamen was
significantly greater in High SS compared to Low and Medium SS (F= 5.74, P= 0.028). Graph 1 describes DA binding potential in relation
to the Zuckerman score. Graph 2 describes DA binding, calculated as the integral of graph 1 assuming that the Zuckerman score reflects
dopamine release. This is a potential explanation for High SS individuals to seek greater dopamine effect by increased dopamine release.
Conclusions: These preliminary data indicate an increased dopamine release in the right putamen in High SS men during gambling.
Individuals who have high Zuckerman scores enjoy an elevated dopamine effect despite the decline of the binding potential. These findings
imply that dopaminergic reward processes differ across personality and possibly explain certain types of addictive behavior.
Koepp, M.J., et al., 1998. Nature 393 (6682), 266 268.
Zuckerman, M., 1994. Behavioral Expressions and Biosocial Bases of Sensation Seeking. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge. 463 pp.
Poster Presentations / NeuroImage 31 (2006) T44 – T186T168
... A second line of thinking concerns the possibility that smoking itself is related to individual differences in impulsivity and sensation seeking and that a risk averse (low impulsivity, low sensation seeking) personality may relate to Parkinson's disease susceptibility (55). Given that the brain's dopaminergic system has been implicated in mechanisms of both addiction (56) and more general impulsivity and sensation seeking (57), it is possible that smoking may both exert a direct effect on Parkinson's disease risk and also be more generally associated with other traits that influence Parkinson's disease risk. Regardless of the mechanistic explanation for the association between smoking and Parkinson's disease, smoking is an important variable to consider as a possible confounder of epidemiological analyses of occupational exposures because smoking behaviour is also related to occupation (58). ...