Fluvoxamine treatment and D2 receptors: A pet study on OCD drug-naïve patients

Rosa Maria Moresco, Lucia Pietra, Marta Henin, Andrea Panzacchi, Marco Locatelli, Lorena Bonaldi, Assunta Carpinelli, Clara Gobbo, Laura Bellodi, Daniela Perani, Ferruccio Fazio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Changes in D2 receptors during antidepressant therapy have been reported in patients with major depressive disorder using PET/SPET. The aim of this study was to evaluate modifications in D2 receptors that might occur in patients affected by obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) during serotonin reuptake sites inhibitors (SSRIs). To this purpose, we measured the in vivo binding of [11C]raclopride ([11C]Rac)in the brain of a group of OCD naíve patients before and after the repeated administration of the inhibitor SSRI fluvoxamine. Eight patients with a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders IVth edition diagnosis of OCD completed the study undergoing a PET scan and a complete clinical evaluation before and during treatment with fluvoxamine. Patients have been compared also with a group of nine age-matched normal volunteers. Fluvoxamine treatment significantly improved clinical symptoms and increased [11C]Rac binding potential (BP) in the basal ganglia of OCD patients (7.5±5.2, 6.9±6.9, and 9.9±9.3% in dorsal caudate, dorsal putamen, and ventral basal ganglia, respectively; p11C]Rac BP of previously drug-naíve OCD patients. The modifications in D2 receptor availability might be secondary to fluvoxamine effects on serotoninergic activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-205
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2007


  • Antidepressant
  • Dopamine receptor
  • Drug naïve
  • Emission tomography
  • Molecular imaging
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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