Research Topic

The Emerging Role of SPECT Functional Neuroimaging in Psychiatry & Neurology

About this Research Topic

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) in its fifth iteration, fails to capture the multiple endophenotypes of neurophysiological disruption which characterizes many psychiatric disorders, as demonstrated with field testing of the diagnostic criteria, genetics, psychological testing, and neuroimaging. Thus, these findings, and many others, discount the categorical separation created by the DSM system and argue for a new dimensional approach to diagnosing psychiatric disorders, affording the study of correlated biomarkers, such as those derived from neuroimaging. Decades of research into functional MRI have yielded a questionable collection of data marred by statistical error, which has not met the promise of neuroimaging biomarkers for psychiatric diagnoses. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of SPECT scans have been performed in the clinical arena. A collective knowledge base has begun to emerge concerning SPECT neuroimaging findings which correlate not with DSM diagnoses, but neuroimaging-based diagnoses within and across DSM diagnostic categories. Similarly, SPECT neuroimaging has emerged as a tool with strong sensitivity and specificity in the diagnosis and evaluation of dementia, traumatic brain injury and other neurological disorders.

The goal of this Research Topic is to examine, assess, and discuss the role of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and potential diagnosis of psychiatric and neurological conditions. Thus, contributors may take either a supportive or a critical position concerning the use of SPECT neuroimaging in these applications.

Contributors are welcome to use the formats of an original research article, brief research report, systematic review, review, mini-review, policy and practice review, hypothesis and theory, perspective, case report, community case study, general commentary, or opinion. Studies addressing the following themes are strongly encouraged:

• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of psychiatric conditions, whether fitting within DSM categories or not
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of traumatic brain injury
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of dementia in all its forms
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the assessment of responses to treatments – both conventional and novel.
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and/or Fibromyalgia
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Lyme’s disease, chronic borreolis, and related tick-borne illnesses
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of seizure disorders.
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders and other developmental disorders.


Keywords: SPECT, Psychiatric diagnosis, Neuroimaging, Biomarkers, Psychiatric disorders, Neurological disorders


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) in its fifth iteration, fails to capture the multiple endophenotypes of neurophysiological disruption which characterizes many psychiatric disorders, as demonstrated with field testing of the diagnostic criteria, genetics, psychological testing, and neuroimaging. Thus, these findings, and many others, discount the categorical separation created by the DSM system and argue for a new dimensional approach to diagnosing psychiatric disorders, affording the study of correlated biomarkers, such as those derived from neuroimaging. Decades of research into functional MRI have yielded a questionable collection of data marred by statistical error, which has not met the promise of neuroimaging biomarkers for psychiatric diagnoses. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of SPECT scans have been performed in the clinical arena. A collective knowledge base has begun to emerge concerning SPECT neuroimaging findings which correlate not with DSM diagnoses, but neuroimaging-based diagnoses within and across DSM diagnostic categories. Similarly, SPECT neuroimaging has emerged as a tool with strong sensitivity and specificity in the diagnosis and evaluation of dementia, traumatic brain injury and other neurological disorders.

The goal of this Research Topic is to examine, assess, and discuss the role of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and potential diagnosis of psychiatric and neurological conditions. Thus, contributors may take either a supportive or a critical position concerning the use of SPECT neuroimaging in these applications.

Contributors are welcome to use the formats of an original research article, brief research report, systematic review, review, mini-review, policy and practice review, hypothesis and theory, perspective, case report, community case study, general commentary, or opinion. Studies addressing the following themes are strongly encouraged:

• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of psychiatric conditions, whether fitting within DSM categories or not
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of traumatic brain injury
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of dementia in all its forms
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the assessment of responses to treatments – both conventional and novel.
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and/or Fibromyalgia
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Lyme’s disease, chronic borreolis, and related tick-borne illnesses
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of seizure disorders.
• Utility of SPECT functional neuroimaging in the evaluation and diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders and other developmental disorders.


Keywords: SPECT, Psychiatric diagnosis, Neuroimaging, Biomarkers, Psychiatric disorders, Neurological disorders


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

28 January 2021 Abstract
28 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

28 January 2021 Abstract
28 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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