JOURNAL ARTICLE

Distinct patterns of brain activity evoked by histamine-induced itch reveal an association with itch intensity and disease severity in atopic dermatitis

Y Ishiuji, R C Coghill, T S Patel, Y Oshiro, R A Kraft, G Yosipovitch
British Journal of Dermatology 2009, 161 (5): 1072-80
19663870

BACKGROUND: Little is known about brain mechanisms supporting the experience of chronic puritus in disease states.

OBJECTIVES: To examine the difference in brain processing of histamine-induced itch in patients with active atopic dermatitis (AD) vs. healthy controls with the emerging technique of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) using arterial spin labelling (ASL).

METHODS: Itch was induced with histamine iontophoresis in eight patients with AD and seven healthy subjects.

RESULTS: We found significant differences in brain processing of histamine-induced itch between patients with AD and healthy subjects. Patients with AD exhibited bilateral activation of the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), retrosplenial cingulate cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) as well as contralateral activation of the caudate nucleus and putamen. In contrast, healthy subjects activated the primary motor cortex, primary somatosensory cortex and superior parietal lobe. The PCC and precuneus exhibited significantly greater activity in patients vs. healthy subjects. A significant correlation between percentage changes of brain activation was noted in the activation of the ACC and contralateral insula and histamine-induced itch intensity as well as disease severity in patients with AD. In addition, an association was noted between DLPFC activity and disease severity.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results demonstrate that ASL fMRI is a promising technique to assess brain activity in chronic itch. Brain activity of acute itch in AD seems to differ from that in healthy subjects. Moreover, the activity in cortical areas involved in affect and emotion correlated to measures of disease severity.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article

Discussion

You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read
19663870
×

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.

×

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"