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Anxiety is a common psychiatric symptom with unsatisfactory treatment. Scalp acupuncture is a new type of acupuncture based on the functions of different brain regions. However, recent brain neuroimaging findings have not been well-integrated into scalp acupuncture practice and research since it was developed. In parallel, recently developed brain stimulation methods have also been applied to treat anxiety. In this study, we integrated meta-analysis (using Neurosynth), resting-state functional connectivity, and diffusion tensor imaging (using the amygdala as the region of interest) to identify potential locations of scalp acupuncture/neuromodulation for anxiety. We found that the superior/middle frontal gyrus, middle/superior temporal gyrus, precentral gyrus, supplementary motor area, supramarginal gyrus, angular gyrus, and superior/inferior occipital gyrus are involved in the pathophysiology of anxiety, and, thus, may be used as the target areas of scalp stimulation for alleviating anxiety. Integrating multidisciplinary brain methods to identify key surface cortical areas associated with a certain disorder may shed light on the development of scalp acupuncture/neuromodulation, particularly in the domain of identifying stimulation locations.


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Identify potential neuroimaging-based scalp acupuncture and neuromodulation targets for anxiety

Show Author's information Jin CaoYiting HuangSierra A. HodgesNathaniel MeshbergJian Kong( )
Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Charlestown 02129, MA, USA

Abstract

Anxiety is a common psychiatric symptom with unsatisfactory treatment. Scalp acupuncture is a new type of acupuncture based on the functions of different brain regions. However, recent brain neuroimaging findings have not been well-integrated into scalp acupuncture practice and research since it was developed. In parallel, recently developed brain stimulation methods have also been applied to treat anxiety. In this study, we integrated meta-analysis (using Neurosynth), resting-state functional connectivity, and diffusion tensor imaging (using the amygdala as the region of interest) to identify potential locations of scalp acupuncture/neuromodulation for anxiety. We found that the superior/middle frontal gyrus, middle/superior temporal gyrus, precentral gyrus, supplementary motor area, supramarginal gyrus, angular gyrus, and superior/inferior occipital gyrus are involved in the pathophysiology of anxiety, and, thus, may be used as the target areas of scalp stimulation for alleviating anxiety. Integrating multidisciplinary brain methods to identify key surface cortical areas associated with a certain disorder may shed light on the development of scalp acupuncture/neuromodulation, particularly in the domain of identifying stimulation locations.

Keywords:

scalp acupuncture, neuroimaging, meta-analysis, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), anxiety
Received: 25 February 2021 Revised: 20 May 2021 Accepted: 25 May 2021 Published: 05 June 2021 Issue date: June 2021
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Publication history

Received: 25 February 2021
Revised: 20 May 2021
Accepted: 25 May 2021
Published: 05 June 2021
Issue date: June 2021

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© The authors 2021

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