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Journal Article

Resting-state dynamics as a neuromarker of dopamine administration in healthy female adults

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Bellucci, G., Münte, T., & Park, S. (2019). Resting-state dynamics as a neuromarker of dopamine administration in healthy female adults. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 33(8), 955-964. doi:10.1177/0269881119855983.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0006-46F9-3

Different neuromarkers of people's emotions, personality traits and behavioural performance have recently been identified. However, not much attention has been devoted to neuromarkers of neural responsiveness to drug administration.

We investigated the predictive neuromarkers of acute dopamine (DA) administration.

In a double-blind, within-subject study, we administrated a DA agonist (pramipexole) or placebo to 27 healthy female subjects. Using multivariate classification and prediction analyses, we examined whether dopaminergic modulations of task-free resting-state brain dynamics predict individual differences in pramipexole's modulation of facial attractiveness evaluations.

Our results demonstrate that pramipexole's effects on brain dynamics could be successfully discriminated from resting-state functional connectivity (accuracy: 78.9%; p < 0.0001). On the behavioural level, pramipexole increased facial attractiveness evaluations (t(39) = 4.44; p < 0.0001). In particular, pramipexole administration enhanced connectivity strength of the cinguloopercular network (t(23) = 3.29; p = 0.003) and increased brain signal variability in subcortical and prefrontal brain areas (t(13) = 3.05, p = 0.009). Importantly, multivariate predictive models reveal that pramipexole-dependent modulation of resting-state dynamics predicted the increase of facial attractiveness evaluations after pramipexole (connectivity strength: standardized mean squared error, smse = 0.65; p = 0.0007; brain signal variability: smse = 0.94, p = 0.015).

These results demonstrate that modulations of resting-state brain dynamics induced by a DA agonist predict drug-related effects on evaluation processes, providing a neuromarker of the neural responsiveness of specific brain networks to DA administration.