Abnormalities in glutamate neurotransmission may have a role in the pathophysiology of adolescent depression. The present pilot study examined changes in cortical glutamine/glutamate ratios in depressed adolescents receiving high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. Ten adolescents with treatment-refractory major depressive disorder received up to 30 sessions of 10-Hz repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation at 120% motor threshold with 3000 pulses per session applied to the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Baseline, posttreatment, and 6-month follow-up proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy scans of the anterior cingulate cortex and left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were collected at 3 T with 8-cm3 voxels. Glutamate metabolites were quantified with 2 distinct proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy sequences in each brain region. After repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and at 6 months of follow-up, glutamine/glutamate ratios increased in the anterior cingulate cortex and left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex with both measurements. The increase in the glutamine/glutamate ratio reached statistical significance with the TE-optimized PRESS sequence in the anterior cingulate cortex. Glutamine/glutamate ratios increased in conjunction with depressive symptom improvement. This reached statistical significance with the TE-optimized PRESS sequence in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. High-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation applied to the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex may modulate glutamate neurochemistry in depressed adolescents.
- Adolescent depression
- Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy
- Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Neuroscience (miscellaneous)