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SEX-RELATED DIFFERENCES IN PREPULSE INHIBITION OF STARTLE IN IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME (IBS).

Biol Psychol. 2010 Feb 26;

Authors: Kilpatrick LA, Ornitz E, Ibrahimovic H, Treanor M, Craske M, Nazarian M, Mayer EA, Naliboff BD

Alterations in central networks involved in regulation of arousal, attention, and cognition may be critical for IBS symptom maintenance and exacerbation. Differential sensitivities in these networks may underlie sex differences noted in IBS. The current study examined prepulse inhibition (PPI), a measure of sensorimotor gating, in male and female IBS patients. Relationships between PPI and symptom severity were examined, as well as potential menstrual status effects. Compared to healthy controls, male IBS patients had significantly reduced PPI; whereas female IBS patients (particularly naturally cycling women) had significantly enhanced PPI suggesting hypervigilance. Considering previously demonstrated sex-related differences in perceptual and brain imaging findings in IBS patients, the current findings suggest different neurobiological mechanisms underlie symptom presentation in male and female IBS patients. Compromised filtering of information in male IBS patients may be due to compromised top down (prefrontal, midcingulate) control mechanisms while increased attention to threat due to increased limbic and paralimbic circuits may be characteristic of female IBS patients.

PMID: 20193731 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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