Psychobiological Aspects of Somatoform Disorders: Contributions of Monoaminergic Transmitter SystemsRief W. · Pilger F. · Ihle D. · Verkerk R. · Scharpe S. · Maes M.
aCenter for Behavioral Medicine, Klinik Roseneck, Prien am Chiemsee, and bDepartment of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, University of Marburg, Marburg, Germany; cDepartment of Medical Biochemistry, University of Antwerp, Edegem, Belgium; dDepartment of Psychiatry and Neuropsychology, University Hospital of Maastricht, Maastricht, The Netherlands
Objective: To evaluate the possible biological aspects of ‘unexplained physical symptoms’, this study examined serotonergic and noradrenergic monoamino acids in somatoform disorders and/or depression. Methods: Blood samples of 150 subjects from 4 groups (somatization syndrome; depression; depression and somatization; controls) were analyzed for amino acids contributing to the serotonergic and noradrenergic system and peripheral muscle energy balance (tryptophan, valine, leucine, isoleucine, phenylalanine and tyrosine). Results: Tryptophan, branched chain amino acids and other serotonergic amino acids were decreased in patients with somatoform symptoms, even when no depression was present. Conclusions: We conclude that serotonergic amino acids are biological correlates of multiple unexplained symptoms. Ways of action do not only involve brain mechanisms, but also energy metabolism in peripheral muscles.
Prof. Dr. Winfried Rief
Philipps University of Marburg FB 04
DE–35032 Marburg (Germany)
Tel. +49 6421 2823641, Fax +49 6421 2828904, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Number of Print Pages : 6
Number of Figures : 2, Number of Tables : 1, Number of References : 25
Founded 1975 by J. Mendlewicz (Brussels)
Official Journal of the International Pharmaco-EEG Society (IPEG)
Vol. 49, No. 1, Year 2004 (Cover Date: Released January 2004)
Journal Editor: P. Netter, Giessen; J. Mendlewicz, Brussels; B. Saletu, Vienna
ISSN: 0302–282X (print), 1423–0224 (Online)
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