SUMMARY: GABA serves as a major neurotransmitter of the brain and functions mainly to inhibit neural excitatory activity. Disruption of the GABAergic processes appears to occur in various neurologic and psychiatric conditions, including epilepsy, mood disorders, motor disorders such as focal dystonia and stiff-person syndrome, sleep disorders, neuroplasticity, and drug and alcohol dependence. These concentration differences may be ascertained by using MR spectroscopy to provide information on the concentration of different metabolites. This review briefly discusses advances in MR spectroscopy methods and explores the application of this technique to detect changes in GABA due to disease processes and medication-induced effects.
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