Structural and functional brain alterations in women recovered from anorexia nervosa
Appears in the following Collection
- Psykologisk institutt 
AbstractAnorexia nervosa (AN) is a mental disorder characterized by a relentless pursuit of thinness, severe food restriction, body image disturbances, and an extremely low body weight. The etiology of the disorder is not known. There has been considerable interest in the neurobiology associated with AN, and a wealth of neuroimaging studies have shed light on the neural correlates of this disorder. Research have consistently shown that patients with AN are characterized by brain tissue reductions. To a large extent, these reductions are reversible with weight-gain and recovery, but it is unclear whether they fully normalize. Some studies have reported local gray matter reductions in recovered patients, which could reflect irreversible damage due to emaciation, or alternatively trait characteristics related to AN vulnerability. In contrast, other studies report normal brain tissue volumes in recovered patients. AN is also associated with functional brain alterations in widespread circuits, including parietal, limbic, and prefrontal cortices. Available evidence suggests that AN is characterized by an imbalance within or between brain circuits related to cognitive control and emotion. Such alterations may be associated with the emotional dysregulation that characterizes AN. Still, the nature of these functional brain alterations is not understood. The overall aim of this doctoral thesis was to advance our understanding of the structural and functional brain alterations associated with AN. Specifically, we wanted to a) determine the presence of brain tissue reductions in women recovered from AN, and b) investigate the neural responses in prefrontal and limbic brain circuits during emotional tasks in women recovered from AN. To this end, we used magnetic resonance imaging to measure brain structure and function. We measured neural responses to emotional tasks which required emotional stimuli to be suppressed or ignored, thus hoping to shed light on neural responses involved in both bottom-up emotional arousal and top-down control over emotion. Women recovered from AN were compared to age-matched comparison women.
List of papers
|1: Bang, L. Rø, Ø. Endestad, T. (2016). Normal gray matter volumes in women recovered from anorexia nervosa: A voxel-based morphometry study. BMC Psychiatry; 16(144). The article is available in DUO http://urn.nb.no/URN:NBN:no-56554|
|2: Bang, Lasse; Rø, Øyvind; Endestad, Tor (2015). Amygdala alterations during an emotional conflict task in women recovered from anorexia nervosa. Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging. 248 (126-133). The article is available in DUO http://urn.nb.no/URN:NBN:no-56555|
|3: Bang, Lasse; Rø, Øyvind; Endestad, Tor (2016). Threat-detection and attentional bias to threat in women recovered from anorexia nervosa: Neural alterations in extrastriate and medial prefrontal cortices. Submitted. (Published December 4th, 2016. European Eating Disorders Review) https://doi.org/10.1002/erv.2494|