Ventral tegmental area integrity measured with high-resolution 7-Tesla MRI relates to motivation across depression and anxiety diagnoses


The ventral tegmental area (VTA) is one of the major sources of dopamine in the brain and has been associated with reward prediction, error-based reward learning, volitional drive and anhedonia. However, precise anatomical investigations of the VTA have been prevented by the use of standard-resolution MRI, reliance on subjective manual tracings, and lack of quantitative measures of dopamine-related signal.