Peiying Liu Wang1, Sina Aslan1, Xiufeng Li2, David Buhner3, Richard Briggs2, Robert Haley3, Hanzhang Lu1
1Advanced Imaging Research Center, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States; 2Department of Radiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States; 3Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States
A highly plausible etiology for the Gulf War Illness (GWI) is that the neural damage and cognitive deficits are associated with excessive exposure to cholinesterase-inhibiting cholinergic stimulants. Our previous SPECT study provided strong indication that cerebral blood flow of veterans with Syndrome 2 GWI has reduced responses to cholinergic challenge, compared to unaffected control veterans. The present study confirmed and extended previous findings that patients with Gulf War Illness have abnormal response to an inhibitory cholinergic challenge, physostigmine infusion, when compared to age-gender-education matched control veterans. This new technique may provide a cost-effective biomarker for characterization of Gulf war illness.