Clinical Applications of PET and SPECT in Psychopharmacology

PET-based receptor imaging has provided us with a window to view the complex functioning of brain systems involved in mediating treatment response to psychopharmacological agents. A snapshot of available radionuclide-binding modalities is provided in Table 10-1. Using PET-based radioligands, it has been possible to visualize density, distribution, and occupancy of neural receptors and transporters before, during, and after drug therapy (Talbot and Laruelle 2002). Details about use of neuroimaging methods in individual psychiatric disorders will be described in detail in later chapters pertaining to these disorders. In the following sections, specific examples will be provided to illustrate the use of imaging methods to answer pertinent questions of relevance to psychopharmacology.

TABLE 10-1. Pharmacoimaging in psychiatry

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