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Letter to the Editor   |    
Boundary of Amygdala and Hippocampus
WOO SUK TAE, M.S.; SEUNG BONG HONG, M.D., PH.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2001;158:820-a-821. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.158.5.820-a

To the Editor: For the last two decades, volumetric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies have been widely used for clinical and research purposes in neuroscience. Recently, high-resolution MRI with thin-slice and advanced image-processing technologies have satisfied these needs. Because of its neurophysiologically important role, the hippocampus has been the main target of measurement in neuropsychological diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, depression, and schizophrenia.

Many researchers have developed methods of quantifying real hippocampal volume. And there has been an advance in the methodology of MRI volumetry (14). Correct anatomical separation between the amygdala and hippocampus is difficult. So deciding on an anatomical boundary between the two structures is an important issue in amygdala-hippocampus volumetric MRI studies.

Michael D. De Bellis, M.D., M.P.H., et al. wrote a report (5) related to hippocampal volume measurement, but their study appeared to make a mistake in its setting of amygdala and hippocampus boundaries. In Figure 2, the trace line included both the posterior amygdala and anterior hippocampus. If the authors wanted to separate the hippocampus from the amygdala, the region of interest in Figure 2 would be obviously wrong. As a result, the normal hippocampal volume in Table 1 became relatively large compared to those in earlier reports.

Clifford RJ, Michael DB, Colleen KT: MR-imaging-based volume measurements of the hippocampal formation and anterior temporal lobe: validation studies. Radiology  1990; 176:205–209
[PubMed]
 
Clifford RJ: MRI-based hippocampal volume measurements in epilepsy. Epilepsia 1994; 35(suppl 6):S21–S29
 
Clifford RJ, William HT, Mark C: MRI-based hippocampal volumetrics: data acquisition, normal ranges, and optimal protocol. Magn Reson Imaging 1995; 13:1057–  1064
 
Clifford RJ, William HT, Mark C: Reliability and exactness of MRI-based volumetry: a phantom study. J MRI  1996; 6:700–704
 
De Bellis MD, Clark DB, Beers SR, Soloff PH, Boring AM, Hall J, Kersh A, Keshavan MS: Hippocampal volume in adolescent-onset alcohol use disorders. Am J Psychiatry  2000; 157:737–744
[PubMed]
[CrossRef]
 
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References

Clifford RJ, Michael DB, Colleen KT: MR-imaging-based volume measurements of the hippocampal formation and anterior temporal lobe: validation studies. Radiology  1990; 176:205–209
[PubMed]
 
Clifford RJ: MRI-based hippocampal volume measurements in epilepsy. Epilepsia 1994; 35(suppl 6):S21–S29
 
Clifford RJ, William HT, Mark C: MRI-based hippocampal volumetrics: data acquisition, normal ranges, and optimal protocol. Magn Reson Imaging 1995; 13:1057–  1064
 
Clifford RJ, William HT, Mark C: Reliability and exactness of MRI-based volumetry: a phantom study. J MRI  1996; 6:700–704
 
De Bellis MD, Clark DB, Beers SR, Soloff PH, Boring AM, Hall J, Kersh A, Keshavan MS: Hippocampal volume in adolescent-onset alcohol use disorders. Am J Psychiatry  2000; 157:737–744
[PubMed]
[CrossRef]
 
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