Alcoholism: Emotion and Thinking

This study is currently recruiting participants. (see Contacts and Locations)
Verified November 2012 by Boston University
Sponsor:
Collaborators:
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Marlene Oscar Berman, Boston University
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
NCT00300638
First received: March 7, 2006
Last updated: November 8, 2012
Last verified: November 2012
  Purpose

The purpose of this study is to determine whether long-term chronic alcoholism is associated with changes in emotional functioning and brain structure and function.


Condition Intervention
Alcoholism
Procedure: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Behavioral: Interviews, cognitive tests, and emotional measurements

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional
Official Title: Affective and Conative Changes in Alcoholism

Resource links provided by NLM:


Further study details as provided by Boston University:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Alcoholism's effects on thinking, behavior and brain functioning [ Time Frame: several visits over approximately one month ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Estimated Enrollment: 700
Study Start Date: August 2001
Estimated Study Completion Date: August 2014
Estimated Primary Completion Date: August 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Groups/Cohorts Assigned Interventions
1- MRI and interviews
In our research, we are trying to understand where in the brain these emotional behaviors take place, and whether or not the brain functions differently for alcoholic and nonalcoholic individuals. We present emotional words and pictures on a computer screen, and using MRI scans, we observe how the brain works when people purposefully respond to the words and pictures. Additionally, we are comparing brain structure and activation patterns in men and women, because there may be gender differences in responses to emotional stimuli.
Procedure: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
We present emotional words and pictures on a computer screen, and using MRI scans, we observe how the brain works when people purposefully respond to the words and pictures. Additionally, we are comparing brain structure and activation patterns in men and women, because there may be gender differences in responses to emotional stimuli.
Behavioral: Interviews, cognitive tests, and emotional measurements
We present emotional words and pictures on a computer screen, and using MRI scans, we observe how the brain works when people purposefully respond to the words and pictures. Additionally, we are comparing brain structure and activation patterns in men and women, because there may be gender differences in responses to emotional stimuli.

Detailed Description:

This research investigates brain structure and function in alcoholics compared to healthy nonalcoholic individuals. Alcoholics have shown impairments in cognitive processing of emotional signals. Some alcoholics are impaired in social skills, and many are unable to implement the strategies for interpersonal interactions that they recommend for themselves. For example, alcoholics have difficulty interpreting non-verbal emotional cues and recognizing facial expressions of emotion. When listening to sentences, alcoholics also have some difficulty judging emotional intonations and emotional content. In our research, we are trying to understand where in the brain these emotional behaviors take place, and whether or not the brain functions differently for alcoholic and nonalcoholic individuals. We present emotional words and pictures on a computer screen, and using MRI scans, we observe how the brain works when people purposefully respond to the words and pictures. Additionally, we are comparing brain structure and activation patterns in men and women, because there may be gender differences in responses to emotional stimuli.

  Eligibility

Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 85 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Sampling Method:   Non-Probability Sample
Study Population

The study populations include alcoholics and demographically equivalent healthy controls. Potential participants who have participated in one or more of our prior studies are contacted by telephone to determine whether or not they would like to participate again. Potential participants who have not previously been enlisted in any of our studies are recruited through fliers placed in the Boston Veterans Affairs Healthcare System, Boston University School of Medicine, and after-care programs in the Boston area, and through advertisements placed with local newspapers and web sites. For these "new" participants, subject selection procedures include an initial prescreening telephone interview to determine identifying information such as age, level of education, health history, and history of alcohol and drug use. Those eligible are invited to the laboratory for further screening and neuropsychological evaluations.

Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Male and female right-handed people 18 years of age or older.
  • Participants either will have a past Diagnostic and Statistical Manual version IV (DSM-IV) diagnosis of alcohol dependence, or no such history at all.
  • Participants will have signed an informed consent.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Pregnant women.
  • Shrapnel or other metal in body (dental fillings OK)
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00300638

Contacts
Contact: Pooja Parikh, MA 617-638-5317 poojap@bu.edu
Contact: Marlene O. Berman, PhD 617-638-4803 oscar@bu.edu

Locations
United States, Massachusetts
VA Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital Recruiting
Boston, Massachusetts, United States, 02130
Contact: Kayle S. Sawyer, BS    857-364-4003    kslays@bu.edu   
Contact: Marlene O. Berman, Ph.D.    857-364-4005    oscar@bu.edu   
Principal Investigator: Marlene O. Berman, PhD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
Boston University
Investigators
Principal Investigator: Marlene O. Berman, PhD Boston University
  More Information

Publications:
Responsible Party: Marlene Oscar Berman, Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry, and Anatomy & Neurobiology, Boston University
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00300638     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: NIAAABER007112, R01AA007112, NIH Grant R01 AA007112
Study First Received: March 7, 2006
Last Updated: November 8, 2012
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by Boston University:
Alcoholism
Emotion
Cognition
Brain scans

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Alcoholism
Alcohol-Related Disorders
Substance-Related Disorders
Chemically-Induced Disorders
Mental Disorders

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on August 21, 2014