This study was designed to replicate and extend past research examining the impact of the serotonin transporter gene-linked polymorphic region (5HTTLPR) on neural activation during emotional processing. Six women with at least one short allele were compared to six age-matched women with long/long alleles of the 5HTTLPR. Participants were shown 36 positive and 36 negative slides from the International Affective Picture Set, while functional images were acquired using a 4-T magnetic resonance imaging scanner. Although we were unable to replicate past research demonstrating relatively increased amygdala activation among individuals with an "s" allele to negative stimuli, women with an s allele evidenced decreased left fusiform gyrus activation to positive emotional stimuli (as expected). We suggest that women with a short allele may be either less attentive or less "expert" with regard to positive emotional stimuli, and ideas for future research are presented.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging