The Effects of Acute Dopamine Precursor Depletion on the Reinforcing Value of Exercise in Anorexia NervosaReport as inadecuate




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This study investigated whether dopaminergic systems are involved in the motivation to engage in behaviours associated with anorexia nervosa AN, specifically, the drive to exercise. Women recovered from AN AN REC, n = 17 and healthy controls HC, n = 15 were recruited. The acute phenylalanine-tyrosine depletion APTD method was used to transiently decrease dopamine synthesis and transmission. The effect of dopamine precursor depletion on drive to exercise was measured using a progressive ratio PR exercise breakpoint task. Both groups worked for the opportunity to exercise, and, at baseline, PR breakpoint scores were higher in AN REC than HC. Compared to values on the experimental control session, APTD did not decrease PR breakpoint scores in AN REC, but significantly decreased scores in HC. These data show that women recovered from AN are more motivated to exercise than HC, although in both groups, activity is more reinforcing than inactivity. Importantly, decreasing dopamine does not reduce the motivation to exercise in people recovered from AN, but in contrast, does so in HC. It is proposed that in AN, drive to exercise develops into a behaviour that is largely independent of dopamine mediated reward processes and becomes dependent on cortico-striatal neurocircuitry that regulates automated, habit- or compulsive-like behaviours. These data strengthen the case for the involvement of reward, learning, habit, and dopaminergic systems in the aetiology of AN.



Author: Caitlin B. O’Hara , Alexandra Keyes, Bethany Renwick, Marco Leyton, Iain C. Campbell, Ulrike Schmidt

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/



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