The interrelationship of dopamine D2-like receptor availability in striatal and extrastriatal brain regions in healthy humans: a principal component analysis of [18F]fallypride binding

Neuroimage. 2010 May 15;51(1):53-62. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.02.006. Epub 2010 Feb 10.


Individual differences in dopamine D2-like receptor availability arise across all brain regions expressing D2-like receptors. However, the interrelationships in receptor availability across brain regions are poorly understood. To address this issue, we examined the relationship between D2-like binding potential (BPND) across striatal and extrastriatal regions in a sample of healthy participants. PET imaging was performed with the high affinity D2/D3 ligand [18F]fallypride in 45 participants. BPND images were submitted to voxel-wise principal component analysis to determine the pattern of associations across brain regions. Individual differences in D2-like BPND were explained by three distinguishable components. A single component explained almost all of the variance within the striatum, indicating that individual differences in receptor availability vary in a homogenous manner across the caudate, putamen, and ventral striatum. Cortical BPND was only modestly related to striatal BPND and mostly loaded on a distinct component. After controlling for the general level of cortical D2-like BPND, an inverse relationship emerged between receptor availability in the striatum and the ventral temporal and ventromedial frontal cortices, suggesting possible cross-regulation of D2-like receptors in these regions. The analysis additionally revealed evidence of: (1) a distinct component involving the midbrain and limbic areas; (2) a dissociation between BPND in the medial and lateral temporal regions; and (3) a dissociation between BPND in the medial/midline and lateral thalamus. In summary, individual differences in D2-like receptor availability reflect several distinct patterns. This conclusion has significant implications for neuropsychiatric models that posit global or regionally specific relationships between dopaminergic tone and behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Benzamides
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Corpus Striatum / diagnostic imaging
  • Corpus Striatum / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Principal Component Analysis
  • Pyrrolidines
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2 / metabolism*
  • Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Young Adult


  • Benzamides
  • N-((1-allyl-2-pyrrolidinyl)methyl)-5-(3-fluoropropyl)-2,3-dimethoxybenzamide
  • Pyrrolidines
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2