Noradrenaline transporter blockade increases fronto-parietal functional connectivity relevant for working memory

Dennis Hernaus*, M. Marta, Casales Santa, Jan Stefan Offermann, Therese Van Amelsvoort

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Web of Science)
33 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Experimental animal work has demonstrated that dopamine and noradrenaline play an essential role in modulating prefrontal cortex-mediated networks underlying working memory performance. Studies of functional connectivity have been instrumental in extending such notions to humans but, so far, have almost exclusively focussed on pharmacological agents with a predominant dopaminergic mechanism of action. Here, we investigate the effect of a single dose of atomoxetine 60 mg, a noradrenaline transporter inhibitor, on working memory performance and associated functional connectivity during an n-back task in 19 healthy male volunteers. Atomoxetine increased functional connectivity between right anterior insula and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, precentral gyrus, posterior parietal cortex and precuneus during the high-working memory load condition of the n-back task. Increased atomoxetine-induced insula-dorsolateral prefrontal cortex functional connectivity during this condition correlated with decreased reaction time variability and was furthermore predicted by working memory capacity. These results show for the first time that noradrenaline transporter blockade-induced increases in cortical catecholamines accentuate fronto-parietal working memory-related network integrity. The observation of significant inter-subject variability in response to atomoxetine has implications for inverted-U frameworks of dopamine and noradrenaline function, which could be useful to predict drug effects in clinical disorders with variable treatment response. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)399-410
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Neuropsychopharmacology
Volume27
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017

Keywords

  • FMRI
  • Prefrontal cortex
  • Dopamine
  • Noradrenaline
  • Working memory
  • Cognition
  • ATTENTION-DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER
  • DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER
  • PREFRONTAL CORTEX
  • RESPONSE-INHIBITION
  • HEALTHY-VOLUNTEERS
  • COMT GENOTYPE
  • PSYCHOPHYSIOLOGICAL INTERACTIONS
  • PARKINSONS-DISEASE
  • HUMAN BRAIN
  • ATOMOXETINE

Cite this