Psychiatric News Features PET Research Conducted by Brain Imaging Group

The May 3 edition of Psychiatric News features research conducted by the brain imaging group led by Ramin Parsey, MD, PhD on a potential biomarker for increased risk of suicide. The article, written by Joan Arehart-Treichel, reports on findings published in the March 4 issue of Biological Psychiatry.

Dr. Parsey’s brain imaging group found that low midbrain serotonin transporter binding assessed by PET scanning is associated specifically with an elevated risk of suicide, not with depression. The finding is important because of its potential to help clinicians identify individuals prone to suicide before they make an attempt.

Jeffrey Miller, M.D., an assistant professor at Columbia University and the lead author of the paper in Biological Psychiatry, told the Psychiatric News that the group is engaged in a long-term follow-up study that will refine the predictive power of the biomarker, bringing it a step closer to clinical use.

Psychiatric News is the official newspaper of the American Psychiatric Association. It covers major developments in clinical care and research for practicing mental health professionals. It has a circulation of 39,262, most of them psychiatrists.