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Vol. 75, No. 4, 2002
Issue release date: April 2002
Section title: Corticotropin and Stress
Neuroendocrinology 2002;75:241–249
(DOI:10.1159/000054715)

Basal Hypothalamo-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis Activity and Corticotropin Feedback in Young and Older Men: Relationships to Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Derived Hippocampus and Cingulate Gyrus Volumes

Wolf O.T. · Convit A. · de Leon M.J. · Caraos C. · Qadri S.F.
aCenter for Brain Health, New York University School of Medicine, New York, N.Y., and bNathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, Orangeburg, N.Y., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Corticotropin and Stress

Published online: 4/17/2002

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 2
Number of Tables: 3

ISSN: 0028-3835 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0194 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/NEN

Abstract

Alterations in basal cortisol secretion and feedback sensitivity are reported in aging. However, it is not known whether these hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis alterations are related to structural brain changes. This study was designed to investigate these relationships in the human. Nine young (24.0 ± 1.2 years; mean ± SE; range: 19–30) and 11 older (69.0 ± 1.8 years; range: 59–76) men, in addition to having standardized magnetic resonance imaging of their brains, were given 0.5 mg/kg cortisol or placebo intravenously in a double-blind, crossover study. As expected, older men had significantly smaller volumes for all brain regions. Although the groups did not differ in baseline HPA axis activity, there were significant and specific relationships between the brain volumes and the baseline measures of HPA activity. Namely, for young and older subjects combined and after controlling for age and cerebral vault size, hippocampal volumes were inversely associated with 24-hour urinary cortisol and basal corticotropin (ACTH) levels, and the anterior cingulate gyrus volume was negatively correlated with baseline ACTH. Elderly subjects had a slower decrease in ACTH levels (percent of baseline level) during the first 30 min after cortisol administration. However, no associations were observed between the ACTH feedback indices and any brain measure. This report, although based on a small number of subjects, supports previous studies showing a blunted ACTH fast feedback during normal aging. Hippocampal atrophy appears to be related to increased basal measures of HPA axis activity, but not to fast ACTH feedback. It remains possible that age-associated changes in fast feedback may be related to changes to other brain sites, such as hypothalamus or pituitary.


  

Author Contacts

Antonio Convit
New York University School of Medicine
560 First Avenue, Center for Brain Health, HN-400
New York, NY 10016 (USA)
Tel. +1 212 263 7565, Fax +1 212 263 3270, E-Mail antonio.convit@med.nyu.edu

  

Article Information

Received: Received: October 1, 2001
Accepted after revision: December 18, 2001
Number of Print Pages : 9
Number of Figures : 2, Number of Tables : 3, Number of References : 51

  

Publication Details

Neuroendocrinology (International Journal for Basic and Clinical Studies on Neuroendocrine Relationships)
Founded 1965 by E. Bajusz. Continued by K.M. Knigge (1973–1978), W.F. Ganong (1979–1984), S.M. McCann (1985–1993)

Vol. 75, No. 4, Year 2002 (Cover Date: April 2002)

Journal Editor: C. Kordon, Paris
ISSN: 0028–3835 (print), 1423–0194 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/journals/nen


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Corticotropin and Stress

Published online: 4/17/2002

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 2
Number of Tables: 3

ISSN: 0028-3835 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0194 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/NEN


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