February 1992

Psychiatric, Genetic, and Positron Emission Tomographic Evaluation of Persons at Risk for Huntington's Disease

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences (Drs Baxter, Szuba, and Guze), Neurology (Drs Mazziotta and Grafton), and Radiological Sciences (Division of Nuclear Medicine and Biophysics) (Drs Baxter, Mazziotta, Pahl, Grafton, Guze, and Phelps and Mr Selin), and the Laboratory of Nuclear Medicine (Drs Baxter, Mazziotta, Pahl, Grafton, Guze, and Phelps and Mr Selin), UCLA School of Medicine; and Molecular Neurogenetics Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston (Drs St. GeorgeHyslop, Haines, and Gusella).

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1992;49(2):148-154. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1992.01820020068009

• We examined chorea-free subjects at risk for Huntington's disease (n = 52) for lifetime psychiatric diagnoses, present mood, genetic marker status, and caudate glucose metabolic rates with positron emission tomography. Based on previous work, a caudate—ipsilateral hemisphere ratio less than 1.15 was defined as abnormal and predictive of Huntington's disease. None of three methods used to segregate subjects into groups more and less likely to develop Huntington's disease gave significant group rate differences for any formal psychiatric diagnoses. On present mood testing, however, subjective "anger/hostility" was significantly higher in those likely, compared with those less likely, to develop Huntington's disease, as determined by all three methods.