This is an application for the renewal of a Senior Scientist Award (SSA) that began under NIAAA sponsorship on 12/01/96. In keeping with the goals of the prior term of the SSA, its renewal would permit the PI to continue to: (a) devote all of her research efforts to alcoholism, (b) gain needed experience with structural and functional neuro- imaging techniques in the study of alcoholism-related brain abnormalities, and provide mentoring to women scientists. In conjunction with R37 AA 07112, we will examine the interactive effects of alcoholism, aging, and gender. Male and female abstinent alcoholics and nonalcoholic controls ranging in age from 18 to 80 years will participate in behavioral, electrophysiological, and neuro-imaging (MRI) components of the study. In the behavioral tasks, we will vary both the emotional content of the materials presented (emotional words and facial expressions), and the type of cognitive ability needed for task performance. That is, we will separately measure memory encoding and retrieval of the emotional stimuli. Here we make use of the fact that when people use deep encoding strategies (or make inferential judgements about stimuli) to remember information, their retrieval levels are better than if they use shallow encoding strategies (or observe physical stimulus attributes). For the deep encoding operations (i.e., to yield high recognition rates), we will require participants to judge whether a word is abstract or concrete (or whether a face is, or is not, honest). For the shallow encoding operation (i.e., to yield lower recognition rates), participants will judge whether a word is in capital or small letters (or if a face is male or female). For intermediate encoding, participants will judge whether a word (or a face) represents a positive, negative, or neutral emotions. The neuro-imaging portion of the project consists of structural MRIs obtained prior to testing, as well as functional MRIs (FMRI) obtained during task performance while viewing or recalling emotional words or faces. From the scans, we will obtain in vivo correlative information on brain structure and function before, during, and after exposure to emotional stimuli. Regions of interest (R01s) include the pre-frontal cortex and medial temporal areas. As an adjunct to mapping the central hemodynamic (FMRI) changes, we will concurrently record electrodermal activity to examine the coupling between the autonomic and central measures during emotional activation. The structural MRI scans will show the locus and extent of brain abnormalities; the FMRI scans will determine which frontal and limbic regions are participating in all aspects of the tasks; and the electrodermal measures will indicate trials on which the arousal system was, or was not engaged.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Research Scientist Award (K05)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAA1-BB (21))
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Witt, Ellen
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Boston University
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Sawyer, Kayle S; Maleki, Nasim; Papadimitriou, George et al. (2018) Cerebral white matter sex dimorphism in alcoholism: a diffusion tensor imaging study. Neuropsychopharmacology 43:1876-1883
Rivas-Grajales, Ana MarĂ­a; Sawyer, Kayle S; Karmacharya, Sarina et al. (2018) Sexually dimorphic structural abnormalities in major connections of the medial forebrain bundle in alcoholism. Neuroimage Clin 19:98-105
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Sawyer, Kayle S; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Barthelemy, Olivier J et al. (2017) Gender dimorphism of brain reward system volumes in alcoholism. Psychiatry Res Neuroimaging 263:15-25
Blum, Kenneth; Simpatico, Thomas; Febo, Marcelo et al. (2017) Hypothesizing Music Intervention Enhances Brain Functional Connectivity Involving Dopaminergic Recruitment: Common Neuro-correlates to Abusable Drugs. Mol Neurobiol 54:3753-3758
Blum, Kenneth; Modestino, Edward J; Gondré-Lewis, Marjorie et al. (2017) ""Dopamine homeostasis"" requires balanced polypharmacy: Issue with destructive, powerful dopamine agents to combat America's drug epidemic. J Syst Integr Neurosci 3:
Schoenthaler, Stephen J; Blum, Kenneth; Fried, Lyle et al. (2017) The effects of residential dual diagnosis treatment on alcohol abuse. J Syst Integr Neurosci 3:
Seitz, Johanna; Sawyer, Kayle S; Papadimitriou, George et al. (2017) Alcoholism and sexual dimorphism in the middle longitudinal fascicle: a pilot study. Brain Imaging Behav 11:1006-1017
Mosher Ruiz, Susan; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Kemppainen, Maaria I et al. (2017) Associations Between Personality and Drinking Motives Among Abstinent Adult Alcoholic Men and Women. Alcohol Alcohol 52:496-505
Sawyer, Kayle S; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Mosher Ruiz, Susan et al. (2016) Associations Between Cerebellar Subregional Morphometry and Alcoholism History in Men and Women. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 40:1262-72

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