Translational neuroimaging in alcoholism: identification of altered brain connectivity and treatment efficacy predictors


Alcoholism is a common psychiatric disorder with largely unmet treatment needs. Excellent animal models for this disorder have put forward a number of promising molecular targets for medication development. Yet, clinical trials aimed at exploiting this potential often fall short of expectations. We aim to improve the predictive validity of animal tests by means of functional connectivity analysis using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to identify brain response patterns to pharmacotherapy that are comparable between patients and animal models of alcoholism. To this end we have formed an international consortium with highly complementary expertise in the field of alcoholism and neuroimaging research. This project will reveal alcoholism specific connectivity maps and knowledge of their modification by clinical reference compounds, i.e. acamprosate and naltrexone, in humans and animals. Based on this information we expect to predict better the effects of experimental drugs proposed for treatment of alcoholism in human patients.


Imaging techniques, Animal models, Pharmacology, Substance use disorders, alcohol addiction

Call topic

Mental Disorders

Proposed runtime

2011 - 2014

Project team

Wolfgang Sommer (Coordinator)
Germany (BMBF)
Petri Hyyti„
Finland (AKA)
Karl Mann
Germany (BMBF)
Serdar Dursun
Canada (CIHR)
Santiago Canals
Spain (MICINN)