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LH-RH agonists modulate amygdala response to visual sexual stimulation: A single case fMRI study in pedophilia


Habermeyer, B; Händel, N; Lemoine, P; Klarhöfer, M; Seifritz, E; Dittmann, V; Graf, M (2012). LH-RH agonists modulate amygdala response to visual sexual stimulation: A single case fMRI study in pedophilia. Neurocase, 18(6):489-495.

Abstract

Pedophilia is characterized by a persistent sexual attraction to prepubescent children. Treatment with anti-androgen agents, such as luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LH-RH) agonists, reduces testosterone levels and thereby sexual drive and arousal. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to compare visual erotic stimulation pre- and on-treatment with the LH-RH agonist leuprolide acetate in the case of homosexual pedophilia. The pre-treatment contrasts of the erotic pictures against the respective neutral pictures showed an activation of the right amygdala and adjacent parahippocampal gyrus that decreased significantly under treatment with leuprolide acetate. Our single case fMRI study supports the notion that anti-androgens may modify amygdala response to visual erotic stimulation, a hypothesis that should be further examined in larger studies.

Pedophilia is characterized by a persistent sexual attraction to prepubescent children. Treatment with anti-androgen agents, such as luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LH-RH) agonists, reduces testosterone levels and thereby sexual drive and arousal. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to compare visual erotic stimulation pre- and on-treatment with the LH-RH agonist leuprolide acetate in the case of homosexual pedophilia. The pre-treatment contrasts of the erotic pictures against the respective neutral pictures showed an activation of the right amygdala and adjacent parahippocampal gyrus that decreased significantly under treatment with leuprolide acetate. Our single case fMRI study supports the notion that anti-androgens may modify amygdala response to visual erotic stimulation, a hypothesis that should be further examined in larger studies.

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5 citations in Web of Science®
6 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:29 Jan 2012 14:34
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:26
Publisher:Taylor & Francis Group
ISSN:1355-4794
Publisher DOI:10.1080/13554794.2011.627346
PubMed ID:22136615

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