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Fear-Specific Amygdala Function in Children and Adolescents on the Fragile X Spectrum: A Dosage Response of the FMR1 Gene

Kim, S-Y. and Burris, J. and Bassal, F. and Koldewyn, K. and Chattarji, S. and Tassone, F. and Hessl, D. and Rivera, S.M. (2012) Fear-Specific Amygdala Function in Children and Adolescents on the Fragile X Spectrum: A Dosage Response of the FMR1 Gene. Cerebral Cortex, 24 (3). pp. 600-613. DOI: 10.1093/cercor/bhs341

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Abstract

Mutations of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene are the genetic cause of fragile X syndrome (FXS). The presence of signifi- cant socioemotional problems has been well documented in FXS although the brain basis of those deficits remains unspecified. Here, we investigated amygdala dysfunction and its relation to socioemotional deficits and FMR1 gene expression in children and adolescents on the FX spectrum (i.e., individuals whose trinucleotide CGG repeat expansion from 55 to over 200 places them somewhere within the fragile X diagnostic range from premutation to full mutation). Participants performed an fMRI task in which they viewed fearful, happy, and scrambled faces. Neuroimaging results demonstrated that FX participants revealed significantly attenuated amygdala activation in Fearful > Scrambled and Fearful > Happy contrasts compared with their neurotypical counterparts, while showing no differences in amygdala volume. Furthermore, we found significant relationships between FMR1 gene expression, anxiety/ social dysfunction scores, and reduced amygdala activation in the FX group. In conclusion, we report novel evidence regarding a dosage response of the FMR1 gene on fear-specific functions of the amygdala, which is associated with socioemotional deficits in FXS

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Research Publications
Departments: College of Health and Behavioural Sciences > School of Psychology
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2014 16:33
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2015 03:10
ISSN: 1460-2199
URI: http://e.bangor.ac.uk/id/eprint/422
Identification Number: DOI: 10.1093/cercor/bhs341
Publisher: Oxford University Press
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