BRAIN IMAGINGBrain regions showing increased activation by threat-related words in panic disorderMaddock, Richard J.CA; Buonocore, Michael H.1; Kile, Shawn J.; Garrett, Amy S.2Author Information Department of Psychiatry, University of California Davis, 2230 Stockton Blvd. 1Department of Radiology, University of California Davis, 4801 X St., Sacramento, California 95817 2Department of Psychiatry, Stanford University, 401 Quarry Road, Stanford, California 94305, USA CACorresponding Author: firstname.lastname@example.org Received 22 November 2002; accepted 2 January 2003 NeuroReport: March 3rd, 2003 - Volume 14 - Issue 3 - p 325-328 Buy SDC Abstract Threat-related stimuli consistently activate the posterior cingulate cortex in normal subjects and have exaggerated effects on memory in patients with panic disorder. We hypothesized that panic patients would show increased response to threat-related stimuli in the posterior cingulate cortex. While undergoing fMRI, six panic patients and eight healthy volunteers made valence judgements of threat-related and neutral words. Both groups showed threat-related activation in the left posterior cingulate and left middle frontal cortices, but the activation was significantly greater in panic patients. Panic patients also had more right>left asymmetry of activation in the mid-parahippocampal region. The increased responsivity observed in the posterior cingulate and dorsolateral prefrontal cortices is consistent with the hypothesis that panic disorder patients engage in more extensive memory processing of threat-related stimuli. © 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.