Monthly Archives: April 2012

Whatever Happened to Brodmann Area 27?

Brodmann Area 27, by was_a_bee, adapted from Brodmann (1909), Public Domain

The brain is a complex structure and but can be organised according to several principles. One approach is to characterise the brain regions according to the microscopic properties of these regions.  More specifically the neurons are organised differently between regions. Some regions may contain unique types of neurons. This approach to understanding the organisation of the brain was proposed by the German Neuropathologist Korbinian Brodmann and resulted in the eponymously named Brodmann Area. There are 52 areas in all and I have covered other Brodmann Areas elsewhere. One area which was a little different from previous areas was Brodmann Area 27.  I undertook a search on Medline using the terms “BA27″ and “Brodmann Area 27″. At the time of writing these searches returned 16 and 42 results respectively. The only relevant studies were this one making references to cytoarchitectural properties of BA27 (as well as other areas) and this post-mortem study in which the researchers found increases in [3H] Nicotine binding in BA27 in smokers.

According to the Sylvius Neuroanatomical Reference, BA27 includes areas CA1-CA4 of the Hippocampus and according to RadLex, BA27 is synonymous with the Presubicular Area. Using these terms in Medline would produce a large set of results numbering in the hundreds of thousands. However the point is not that the search terminology is wrong but rather that BA27 has been abandoned in the research literature in favour of these other terms.

Appendix

Neuroanatomy Resources

Index: There are indices for the TAWOP site here and here Twitter: You can follow ‘The Amazing World of Psychiatry’ Twitter by clicking on this link. Podcast: You can listen to this post on Odiogo by clicking on this link (there may be a small delay between publishing of the blog article and the availability of the podcast). It is available for a limited period. TAWOP Channel: You can follow the TAWOP Channel on YouTube by clicking on this link. Responses: If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail justinmarley17@yahoo.co.uk. Disclaimer: The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

Antidepressant Trials and a Psychiatry Summer School for Medical Students. News Round-Up: April 2012 4th Edition

Kok and colleagues have conducted a meta-analysis of 51 randomised controlled trials of antidepressant treatment of depression in older adults and concluded that the evidence supports a beneficial effect of antidepressants in response and remission rates. The researchers were unable to distinguish between Tricyclic Antidepressants, Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors and other antidepressants in remission or response rates. However to conclude that the antidepressants were more effective than placebo in remission rates they pooled the data from all three groups of antidepressants.

In a moderately sized 12-week double-blind placebo controlled trial, Richard and colleagues investigated the treatment of Depression in Parkinson’s Disease. Using the Hamilton Anxiety and Depression Scale they found a mean reduction of 6.2 points in the Paroxetine group (p=0.0007) and 4.2 points in the Venlafaxine XR group (p=0.02)

Rihmer and colleagues have published a paper in the European Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology arguing that the placebo response has been overestimated in some trials and propose an alternative method for calculating antidepressant and placebo response rates.

Although case studies are not as useful as larger trials investigating questions they can often form the basis for hypothesis which can be subsequently investigated with appropriate methodology. In this case report, the researchers identify the progression of cortical changes in a man with Posterior Cortical Atrophy. They identified progression from the Inferior Temporal and Posterior Parietal Cortices to the Occipital Cortex followed by other regions.

In this study, the researchers found that subjective memory impairment was a common complaint in older adults but few people sought medical attention for this.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists has produced this video about the Institute of Psychiatry summer school for medical students to learn more about Psychiatry.

There is an interesting write-up of a new report by the Royal Society on how the world can flourish with 7 billion people and the necessary sociocultural changes that will facilitate this.

Appendix

2008-2011 News Round-Up

Index: There are indices for the TAWOP site here and here Twitter: You can follow ‘The Amazing World of Psychiatry’ Twitter by clicking on this link. Podcast: You can listen to this post on Odiogo by clicking on this link (there may be a small delay between publishing of the blog article and the availability of the podcast). It is available for a limited period. TAWOP Channel: You can follow the TAWOP Channel on YouTube by clicking on this link. Responses: If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail justinmarley17@yahoo.co.uk. Disclaimer: The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

YouTubing the Brain’s Awareness Centre: The Anterior Cingulate Cortex – Brodmann Areas 24 and 25

Hagmann et al,  (2008), Extract from Figure 1 from Mapping the Structural Core of Human Cerebral Cortex, PLoS Biol 6(7): e159, Creative Commons 2.5 License

The brain is a complex structure and but can be organised according to several principles. One approach is to characterise the brain regions according to the microscopic properties of these regions.  More specifically the neurons are organised differently between regions. Some regions may contain unique types of neurons. This approach to understanding the organisation of the brain was proposed by the German Neuropathologist Korbinian Brodmann and resulted in the eponymously named Brodmann Area. There are 52 areas in all and I have covered other Brodmann Areas elsewhere (see Appendix). Searching YouTube for relevant videos on the different Brodmann Areas has turned up occasional videos of interest (see Appendix). I undertook a search for Brodmann Areas 24 and 25 which returned a few results which had previously been retrieved when searching for other Brodmann Areas. These were more generic videos about the Brodmann Areas.

However entering the term ‘Anterior Cingulate Cortex’ produced more results and these were specific to the search question.

Professor Mayberg talks about biomarkers for assessing treatment response in depression including activity in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex

Professor Ramachandaran talks about the Anterior Cingulate Cortex in relation to the qualia of consciousness in this video

Professor Kaszniak discusses metamemory in this University of Arizona lecture

Dr Phillipe Goldin gives a talk on the Neuroscience of emotions in this Google Talks video

SuperAkihabara takes us through the Anterior Cingulate Cortex and has experience in this area from his research.

In this video he talks about working memory

The Anterior Cingulate Cortex is one of the areas that is activated when subjects listen to Chopin’s Etude in E Major Op 10 No 3 with the results displayed in this video

Haseeb2 talks about a study he’s read about in Scientific American. Although he points out to the Cingulate Cortex in the video he corrects this in the comments section (similar to the picture above where the Anterior Cingulate Cortex is shown to the left of the Posterior Cingulate). Haseeb2 talks about some of the activity correlates of the Anterior Cingulate Cortex including emotions and pain (also relevant to the Insular Cortex which has close recipricocity with the Anterior Cingulate Cortex).

Haseeb2 talks about the Anterior Cingulate Cortex in more detail in this video

Two neuroscience graduates explains their theory that the Cingulate Cortex does everything. Although slightly tongue-in-cheek in parts they’ve spotted a trend in the research publications (which seems to be matched by a healthy interest on YouTube!).

These researchers talk about the design of their study (which involves neuroimaging) to investigate decision making by managers in organisations and the factors that lead to flexibility and improved performance.

This video below is not for the squeamish but illustrates the anatomy in a surgical resection of a glioma in the Right Anterior Cingulate gyrus

The functional connectivity network of the Cingulate Cortex are displayed in this video based on the results of a study by Yeo and colleagues

The Brain Parts Song by Aaron Wolf

Appendix

Neuroanatomy Resources

Index: There are indices for the TAWOP site here and here Twitter: You can follow ‘The Amazing World of Psychiatry’ Twitter by clicking on this link. Podcast: You can listen to this post on Odiogo by clicking on this link (there may be a small delay between publishing of the blog article and the availability of the podcast). It is available for a limited period. TAWOP Channel: You can follow the TAWOP Channel on YouTube by clicking on this link. Responses: If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail justinmarley17@yahoo.co.uk. Disclaimer: The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.