[11C] Raclopride Positron Emission Tomography [PET] of Amphetamine induced Dopamine Release in Tourette Syndrome and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Grant Type
Grant Year
Institution Location
Institution Organization Name
University Med. Cntr. The Netherlands
Investigators Name
Denys, Damiaan, MD, PhD

Tourette syndrome (TS) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) share similar clinical features presumably by virtue of similar neurobiological mechanisms. In both conditions, dopaminergic abnormalities in cortico-striatothalamo-cortical neuronal circuits have been hypothesized as the underlying pathophysiologic mechanism. The objective of this study is to investigate the role of the dopamine system in TS and OCD by determining the dopamine D2 receptor binding and the presynaptic dopamine release in patients with TS and OCD. It is hypothesized that a lower D2 receptor binding and a greater dopamine release in the putamen will be seen in patients with TS, and a lower D2 receptor binding and a greater dopamine release in the caudate nucleus of patients with OCD. This study is the first and largest to investigate D2 receptors and intrasynaptic dopamine release in TS and OCD. In addition, it is the first to compare directly abnormalities between D2 receptor distribution and dopamine release in TS and OCD. The results may lead to a further clarification of the dopaminergic system in TS and OCD. Confirmation of a release abnormality in larger numbers of patients with TS and OCD could, in turn, lead to the development of new pharmacotherapies for both disorders and disentangle the pathophysiology of TS and OCD. Damiaan Denys, M.D., Ph.D. University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands Danielle Cath, M.D., Ph.D. VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands Award: $75,000 Tourette Association of America Inc. – Research Grant Award 2005-2006