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Reduced insular gamma-aminobutyric acid in fibromyalgia

Foerster, Bradley R.; Petrou, Myria; Edden, Richard A. E.; Sundgren, Pia LU ; Schmidt-Wilcke, Tobias; Lowe, Suzan E.; Harte, Steven E.; Clauw, Daniel J. and Harris, Richard E. (2012) In Arthritis and Rheumatism 64(2). p.579-583
Abstract
Objective Recent scientific findings have reinvigorated interest in examining the role of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory central nervous system neurotransmitter, in chronic pain conditions. Decreased inhibitory neurotransmission is a proposed mechanism in the pathophysiology of chronic pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia (FM). The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that decreased levels of insular and anterior cingulate GABA would be present in FM patients, and that the concentration of this neurotransmitter would be correlated with pressurepain thresholds. Methods. Sixteen FM patients and 17 age-and sex-matched healthy controls underwent pressure-pain testing and a 3T proton magnetic resonance... (More)
Objective Recent scientific findings have reinvigorated interest in examining the role of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory central nervous system neurotransmitter, in chronic pain conditions. Decreased inhibitory neurotransmission is a proposed mechanism in the pathophysiology of chronic pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia (FM). The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that decreased levels of insular and anterior cingulate GABA would be present in FM patients, and that the concentration of this neurotransmitter would be correlated with pressurepain thresholds. Methods. Sixteen FM patients and 17 age-and sex-matched healthy controls underwent pressure-pain testing and a 3T proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy session in which the right anterior insula, right posterior insula, anterior cingulate, and occipital cortex were examined in subjects at rest. Results. GABA levels in the right anterior insula were significantly lower in FM patients compared with healthy controls (mean +/- SD 1.17 +/- 0.24 arbitrary institutional units versus 1.42 +/- 0.32 arbitrary institutional units; P = 0.016). There was a trend toward increased GABA levels in the anterior cingulate of FM patients compared with healthy controls (P = 0.06). No significant differences between groups were detected in the posterior insula or occipital cortex (P > 0.05 for all comparisons). Within the right posterior insula, higher levels of GABA were positively correlated with pressurepain thresholds in the FM patients (Spearman's rho = 0.63; P = 0.02). Conclusion. Diminished inhibitory neurotransmission resulting from lower concentrations of GABA within the right anterior insula may play a role in the pathophysiology of FM and other central pain syndromes. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Arthritis and Rheumatism
volume
64
issue
2
pages
579 - 583
publisher
John Wiley & Sons
external identifiers
  • wos:000299625700033
  • scopus:84856374810
ISSN
1529-0131
DOI
10.1002/art.33339
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
b31c29f3-ac7a-4942-9307-d827c62ab118 (old id 2416178)
date added to LUP
2012-04-02 09:40:53
date last changed
2017-11-19 03:15:41
@article{b31c29f3-ac7a-4942-9307-d827c62ab118,
  abstract     = {Objective Recent scientific findings have reinvigorated interest in examining the role of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory central nervous system neurotransmitter, in chronic pain conditions. Decreased inhibitory neurotransmission is a proposed mechanism in the pathophysiology of chronic pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia (FM). The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that decreased levels of insular and anterior cingulate GABA would be present in FM patients, and that the concentration of this neurotransmitter would be correlated with pressurepain thresholds. Methods. Sixteen FM patients and 17 age-and sex-matched healthy controls underwent pressure-pain testing and a 3T proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy session in which the right anterior insula, right posterior insula, anterior cingulate, and occipital cortex were examined in subjects at rest. Results. GABA levels in the right anterior insula were significantly lower in FM patients compared with healthy controls (mean +/- SD 1.17 +/- 0.24 arbitrary institutional units versus 1.42 +/- 0.32 arbitrary institutional units; P = 0.016). There was a trend toward increased GABA levels in the anterior cingulate of FM patients compared with healthy controls (P = 0.06). No significant differences between groups were detected in the posterior insula or occipital cortex (P > 0.05 for all comparisons). Within the right posterior insula, higher levels of GABA were positively correlated with pressurepain thresholds in the FM patients (Spearman's rho = 0.63; P = 0.02). Conclusion. Diminished inhibitory neurotransmission resulting from lower concentrations of GABA within the right anterior insula may play a role in the pathophysiology of FM and other central pain syndromes.},
  author       = {Foerster, Bradley R. and Petrou, Myria and Edden, Richard A. E. and Sundgren, Pia and Schmidt-Wilcke, Tobias and Lowe, Suzan E. and Harte, Steven E. and Clauw, Daniel J. and Harris, Richard E.},
  issn         = {1529-0131},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {579--583},
  publisher    = {John Wiley & Sons},
  series       = {Arthritis and Rheumatism},
  title        = {Reduced insular gamma-aminobutyric acid in fibromyalgia},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/art.33339},
  volume       = {64},
  year         = {2012},
}