Brain area pinpointed to link to Bipolar Disorder

30th Jan 2017

New research has discovered specific areas in the brain that can lead to a new insight for treatment and diagnosis of bipolar disorder.

In the study, the researchers used a combination of magnetic resonance imaging and an advanced segmentation approach in order to evaluate the differences in the volumes of the subfields of the hippocampus. The hippocampus is an essential part of the limbic system, which controls our memories and emotional behaviour. 

They found that the bipolar disorder participants had volume reduction in certain parts of the hippocampus compared to non-bipolar participants. This reduction was more pronounced in subjects with bipolar 1 disorder compared to other mood disorders. Additionally, the researchers found that patients with bipolar 1 disorder displayed lower volumes in the hippocampus areas the longer the period of their illness became. 

This is the first research to locate damage to specific subfields within the hippocampus due to bipolar disorder. 

To read the full article, please visit Nature's website

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