Natasha B. Lasko

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In animals, exposure to severe stress can damage the hippocampus. Recent human studies show smaller hippocampal volume in individuals with the stress-related psychiatric condition posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Does this represent the neurotoxic effect of trauma, or is smaller hippocampal volume a pre-existing condition that renders the brain more(More)
BACKGROUND A clinical characteristic of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is persistently elevated fear responses to stimuli associated with the traumatic event. The objective herein is to determine whether extinction of fear responses is impaired in PTSD and whether such impairment is related to dysfunctional activation of brain regions known to be(More)
BACKGROUND Previous functional neuroimaging studies have demonstrated exaggerated amygdala responses and diminished medial prefrontal cortex responses during the symptomatic state in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). OBJECTIVES To determine whether these abnormalities also occur in response to overtly presented affective stimuli unrelated to trauma;(More)
BACKGROUND Converging lines of evidence have implicated the amygdala in the pathophysiology of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We previously developed a method for measuring automatic amygdala responses to general threat-related stimuli; in conjunction with functional magnetic resonance imaging, we used a passive viewing task involving masked(More)
CONTEXT Theoretical neuroanatomic models of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the results of previous neuroimaging studies of PTSD highlight the potential importance of the amygdala and medial prefrontal regions in this disorder. However, the functional relationship between these brain regions in PTSD has not been directly examined. OBJECTIVE To(More)
OBJECTIVE The purpose of this study was to determine whether anterior limbic and paralimbic regions of the brain are differentially activated during the recollection and imagery of traumatic events in trauma-exposed individuals with and without posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). METHOD Positron emission tomography (PET) was used to measure normalized(More)
BACKGROUND Several recent neuroimaging studies have provided data consistent with functional abnormalities in anterior cingulate cortex in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In our study, we implemented a cognitive activation paradigm to test the functional integrity of anterior cingulate cortex in PTSD. METHODS Eight Vietnam combat veterans with PTSD(More)
Differential conditioning was assessed in 15 medication-free individuals meeting Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) criteria for chronic posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and 18 trauma-exposed individuals who never developed PTSD (non-PTSD). Conditioned stimuli (CSs) were colored(More)
This study used quantitative volumetric magnetic resonance imaging techniques to explore the neuroanatomic correlates of chronic, combat-related posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in seven Vietnam veterans with PTSD compared with seven nonPTSD combat veterans and eight normal nonveterans. Both left and right hippocampi were significantly smaller in the(More)
Recall of fear extinction, which is thought to aid in recovery from a psychologically traumatic event, is hypothesized to be deficient in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but this has not yet been demonstrated in the laboratory, nor has its origin been investigated. To address these two issues, 14 pairs of monozygotic twins discordant for combat(More)