Elevated central serotonin transporter binding availability in acutely abstinent cocaine-dependent patients

Am J Psychiatry. 2000 Jul;157(7):1134-40. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.157.7.1134.

Abstract

Objective: Recent work has underscored the role of serotonergic neurotransmission in chronic neural adaptations to cocaine dependence. The authors tested for evidence of serotonergic dysfunction during acute abstinence from cocaine, a period of high risk for relapse in cocaine dependence.

Method: Binding availability of dopamine transporters and serotonin transporters was measured in 15 cocaine-dependent subjects during acute abstinence and in 37 healthy comparison subjects by using [(123)I]beta-CIT and single photon emission computed tomography.

Results: Significant increases in diencephalic and brainstem serotonin transporter binding (16.7% and 31.6%, respectively) were observed in cocaine-dependent subjects. Brainstem serotonin transporter binding was significantly inversely correlated with age across diagnostic groups.

Conclusions: These findings provide further evidence of serotonergic dysfunction during acute abstinence from chronic cocaine use. Age-related decline in brainstem serotonin transporter binding may underlie the poor response to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants seen in some elderly depressed patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Brain Stem / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Stem / metabolism
  • Brain Stem / physiopathology
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism*
  • Carrier Proteins / physiology
  • Cocaine / analogs & derivatives
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / diagnostic imaging
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / metabolism*
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / physiopathology
  • Diencephalon / diagnostic imaging
  • Diencephalon / metabolism
  • Dopamine / metabolism
  • Dopamine / physiology
  • Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Male
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / metabolism*
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / physiology
  • Membrane Transport Proteins*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins*
  • Recurrence
  • Risk Factors
  • Serotonin / metabolism*
  • Serotonin / physiology
  • Serotonin Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon / statistics & numerical data
  • Treatment Outcome

Substances

  • Carrier Proteins
  • Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • SLC6A4 protein, human
  • Serotonin Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
  • Serotonin
  • 2beta-carbomethoxy-3beta-(4-iodophenyl)tropane
  • Cocaine
  • Dopamine