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Amygdala subnuclei resting-state functional connectivity sex and estrogen differences
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Harvard Univ, Massachusetts Gen Hosp, Sch Med, Dept Psychiat, Boston, MA USA..
Harvard Univ, Massachusetts Gen Hosp, Sch Med, Dept Psychiat, Boston, MA USA.;Harvard Univ, Boston Childrens Hosp, Sch Med, Dept Anesthesiol Perioperat & Pain Med, Boston, MA USA..
Massachusetts Gen Hosp, Dept Radiol, Athinoula A Martinos Ctr Biomed Imaging, Charlestown, MA USA.;Harvard Univ, Dept Psychol, Ctr Brain Sci, Cambridge, MA 02138 USA..
Harvard Univ, Massachusetts Gen Hosp, Sch Med, Dept Psychiat, Boston, MA USA..
2016 (English)In: Psychoneuroendocrinology, ISSN 0306-4530, E-ISSN 1873-3360, Vol. 63, 34-42 p.Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Abstract [en]

The amygdala is a hub in emotional processing, including that of negative affect. Healthy men and women have distinct differences in amygdala responses, potentially setting the stage for the observed sex differences in the prevalence of fear, anxiety, and pain disorders. Here, we examined how amygdala subnuclei resting-state functional connectivity is affected by sex, as well as explored how the functional connectivity is related to estrogen levels. Resting-state functional connectivity was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) with seeds placed in the left and right laterobasal (LB) and centro-medial (CM) amygdala. Sex differences were studied in 48 healthy men and 48 healthy women, matched for age, while the association with estrogen was analyzed in a subsample of 24 women, for whom hormone levels had been assessed. For the hormone analyses, the subsample was further divided into a lower and higher estrogen levels group based on a median split. We found distinct sex differences in the LB and CM amygdala resting-state functional connectivity, as well as preliminary evidence for an association between estrogen levels and connectivity patterns. These results are potentially valuable in explaining why women are more afflicted by conditions of negative affect than are men, and could imply a mechanistic role for estrogen in modulating emotion.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 63, 34-42 p.
Keyword [en]
Intrinsic connectivity networks, Spontaneous fluctuations, Sex differences, Hormones, Estradiol, Negative affect
National Category
Endocrinology and Diabetes Neurology Psychiatry
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-274923DOI: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2015.09.012ISI: 000367422400005PubMedID: 26406106OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-274923DiVA: diva2:898153
NIH (National Institute of Health), 1S10RR023043NIH (National Institute of Health), 1S10RR023401
Available from: 2016-01-27 Created: 2016-01-26 Last updated: 2016-01-27Bibliographically approved

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Engman, Jonas
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