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Neuronal correlates of visual and auditory alertness in the DMT and ketamine model of psychosis

Neuronal correlates of visual and auditory alertness in the DMT and ketamine model of psychosis

  1. Gradient
    AbstractDeficits in attentional functions belong to the core cognitive symptoms in schizophrenic patients. Alertness is a nonselective attention component that refers to a state of general readiness that improves stimulus processing and response initiation. The main goal of the present study was to investigate cerebral correlates of alertness in the human 5HT2A agonist and N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) antagonist model of psychosis. Fourteen healthy volunteers participated in a randomized double-blind, cross-over event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study with dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and S-ketamine. A target detection task with cued and uncued trials in both the visual and the auditory modality was used. Administration of DMT led to decreased blood oxygenation level-dependent response during performance of an alertness task, particularly in extrastriate regions during visual alerting and in temporal regions during auditory alerting. In general, the effects for the visual modality were more pronounced. In contrast, administration of S-ketamine led to increased cortical activation in the left insula and precentral gyrus in the auditory modality. The results of the present study might deliver more insight into potential differences and overlapping pathomechanisms in schizophrenia. These conclusions must remain preliminary and should be explored by further fMRI studies with schizophrenic patients performing modality-specific alertness tasks.

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