Table_1_Borderline Personality Disorder With Cocaine Dependence: Impulsivity, Emotional Dysregulation and Amygdala Functional Connectivity.DOCX

Background: Borderline personality disorder is present in 19% of cocaine dependence cases; however, this dual pathology is poorly understood. We wished to characterize the dual pathology and find its functional connectivity correlates to better understand it.

Methods: We recruited 69 participants divided into 4 groups: dual pathology (n = 20), cocaine dependence without borderline personality disorder (n = 19), borderline personality without cocaine dependence (n = 10) and healthy controls (n = 20). We used self-reported instruments to measure impulsivity and emotional dysregulation. We acquired resting state fMRI and performed seed-based analyses of the functional connectivity of bilateral amygdala.

Results: Borderline personality disorder and cocaine dependence as factors had opposing effects in impulsivity and emotional dysregulation, as well as on functional connectivity between left amygdala and medial prefrontal cortex. On the other hand, in the functional connectivity between right amygdala and left insula, the effect of having both disorders was instead additive, reducing functional connectivity strength. The significant functional connectivity clusters were correlated with impulsivity and emotional dysregulation.

Conclusions: In this study, we found that clinical scores of dual pathology patients were closer to those of borderline personality disorder without cocaine dependence than to those of cocaine dependence without borderline personality disorder, while amygdala-medial prefrontal cortex functional connectivity patterns in dual pathology patients were closer to healthy controls than expected.