Effects of social subordination and oestradiol on resting-state amygdala functional connectivity in adult female rhesus monkeys

Katherine M Reding, David S Grayson, Oscar Miranda-Dominguez, Siddarth Ray, Mark E Wilson, Donna Toufexis, Damien A Fair, Mar M Sanchez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Preclinical studies demonstrate that chronic stress modulates the effects of oestradiol (E2) on behaviour through the modification of the amygdala and the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) neuronal structure. Clinical studies suggest that alterations in amygdala functional connectivity (FC) with the mPFC may be associated with stress-related phenotypes, including mood and anxiety disorders. Thus, identifying the effects of stress and E2 on amygdala-mPFC circuits is critical for understanding the neurobiology underpinning the vulnerability to stress-related disorders in women. In the present study, we used a well-validated rhesus monkey model of chronic psychosocial stress (subordinate social rank) to examine effects of E2 on subordinate (SUB) (i.e. high stress) and dominant (DOM) (i.e. low stress) female resting-state amygdala FC with the mPFC and with the whole-brain. In the non-E2 treatment control condition, SUB was associated with stronger left amygdala FC to subgenual cingulate (Brodmann area [BA] 25: BA25), a region implicated in several psychopathologies in people. In SUB females, E2 treatment strengthened right amygdala-BA25 FC, induced a net positive amygdala-visual cortex FC that was positively associated with frequency of submissive behaviours, and weakened positive amygdala-para/hippocampus FC. Our findings show that subordinate social rank alters amygdala FC and the impact of E2 on amygdala FC with BA25 and with regions involved in visual processing and memory encoding.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere12822
Pages (from-to)e12822
JournalJournal of Neuroendocrinology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank Jennifer Whitley, Natalie Brutto, Christine Marsteller, Jon Lowe, Shannon Moss and Dr Jodi Godfrey for their technical assistance. The studies were supported by NIH grants MH81816 (DT), MH81816-S1 (DT), P50 MH078105-04S1 (MMS), and Yerkes National Primate Research Center Base Grant P51OD011132. The Yerkes NPRC is fully accredited by AAALAC International.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 British Society for Neuroendocrinology


  • fMRI
  • oestradiol
  • resting-state
  • rhesus monkey
  • stress

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural


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