Decreased Neurokinin-1 (Substance P) Receptor Binding in Patients with Panic Disorder: Positron Emission Tomographic Study with [18F]SPA-RQ

Yota Fujimura, Fumihiko Yasuno, Amanda Farris, Jeih San Liow, Marilla Geraci, Wayne Drevets, Daniel S. Pine, Subroto Ghose, Alicja Lerner, Richard Hargreaves, H. Donald Burns, Cheryl Morse, Victor W. Pike, Robert B. Innis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Positron emission tomography (PET) can localize and quantify neurokinin-1 (NK1) receptors in brain using the nonpeptide antagonist radioligand, [18F]SPA-RQ. We sought to determine if patients with panic disorder have altered density of NK1 receptors in brain because of their history of recurrent panic attacks. We also sought to determine if a drug-induced panic attack releases substance P in brain, as measured by decreased binding of [18F]SPA-RQ. Methods: Positron emission tomography scans with [18F]SPA-RQ were performed in 14 patients with panic disorder and 14 healthy subjects. Of these two groups, 7 patients and 10 healthy subjects were scanned twice, once at baseline and once after injection of doxapram, a drug that induces panic attacks. Results: NK1 receptor binding in patients (n = 14) compared with that in healthy subjects (n = 14) was significantly decreased by 12% to 21% in all brain regions. Doxapram effectively produced panic attacks in 6 of 7 patients with panic disorder but only 2 of 10 healthy subjects. Doxapram caused no significant change of [18F]SPA-RQ binding in either patients or healthy subjects. Conclusions: Although induction of a panic attack has no significant effect on [18F]SPA-RQ binding to NK1 receptors, patients with panic disorder have widespread reduction of NK1 receptor binding in brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)94-97
Number of pages4
JournalBiological Psychiatry
Volume66
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2009

Keywords

  • NK receptor
  • panic attack
  • panic disorder
  • positron emission tomography (PET)
  • substance P

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry

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    Fujimura, Y., Yasuno, F., Farris, A., Liow, J. S., Geraci, M., Drevets, W., Pine, D. S., Ghose, S., Lerner, A., Hargreaves, R., Burns, H. D., Morse, C., Pike, V. W., & Innis, R. B. (2009). Decreased Neurokinin-1 (Substance P) Receptor Binding in Patients with Panic Disorder: Positron Emission Tomographic Study with [18F]SPA-RQ. Biological Psychiatry, 66(1), 94-97. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsych.2008.12.027