Both hippocampal atrophy and hippocampal-based memory deficits reversed with treatment with the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) paroxetine, which has been shown to promote neurogenesis (the growth of neurons) in the hippocampus in preclinical studies.163
In addition, treatment with the anticonvulsant phenytoin led to an improvement in PTSD symptoms164 and an increase in right hippocampal and right cerebral volume.165 We hypothesize that stress-induced hippocampal dysfunction may mediate many of the symptoms of PTSD which are related to memory dysregulation, including both explicit memory Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical deficits as well as fragmentation of memory in abuse survivors. It is unclear at the current time whether these changes are specific to PTSD, whether certain common environmental events (eg, stress) in different Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical disorders lead to similar brain changes, or whether common genetic traits lead to similar outcomes. The meaning of findings related to deficits in memory and the hippocampus in PTSD, and questions
related to the relative contribution of genetic and environmental factors, has become an important topic in the field of PTSD and stress research. There are three Selleck Romidepsin possible models, taking into Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical account genetic or environmental factors, which have been proposed to explain smaller hippocampal volume in PTSD: Model A (Environment), Model B (Environment and Genetic), and Model C (Genetic).166-169 In Model C (Genetic), Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical smaller hippocampal volume represents a premorbid risk factor for PTSD. In support of this model Pitman and colleagues170 have demonstrated that lower premilitary IQ is associated with combat-related PTSD, as well as finding a correlation between PTSD symptoms and Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical hippocampal volume in twin brothers.151 Model A (Environment) states that stress leads to damage or inhibition of neurogenesis via hypercortisolemia, decreased BDNF, or increased glutamate. Model B (Environment/Genetic) states that a combination of environmental and genetic
factors leads to deficits in hippocampal function and structure. Showing that an intervention like medication Thymidine kinase changes hippocampal volume and cognition would provide support for at least a partial contribution of the environment to the outcomes of interest. In addition to the hippocampus, other brain structures have been implicated in a neural circuitry of stress, including the amygdala and prefrontal cortex. The amygdala is involved in memory for the emotional valence of events, and plays a critical role in the acquisition of fear responses. The medial prefrontal cortex includes the anterior cingulate gyrus (Brodmann’s area [BA] 32) and subcallosal gyrus (area 25) as well as orbitofrontal cortex.