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AJP CME: May 2020 - Age Differences in the Neural Correlates of Anxiety Disorders: An fMRI Study of Response to Learned Threat

Activity Type:

  • Journal CME

Release Date: 5/1/2020

Expiration Date: 4/30/2022

  • AMA PRA Category 1: 1
  • Participation: 1



Objective: Although both pediatric and adult patients with anxiety disorders exhibit similar neural responding to threats, age-related differences have been found in some functional MRI (fMRI) studies. To reconcile disparate findings, the authors compared brain function in youths and adults with and without anxiety disorders while rating fear and memory of ambiguous threats.

Methods: Two hundred medication-free individuals ages 8–50 were assessed, including 93 participants with an anxiety disorder. Participants underwent discriminative threat conditioning and extinction in the clinic. Approximately 3 weeks later, they completed an fMRI paradigm involving extinction recall, in which they rated their levels of fear evoked by, and their explicit memory for, morph stimuli with varying degrees of similarity to the extinguished threat cues.


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Educational Objective

The participant will recognize age differences in the neural correlates of anxiety disorders.

Target Audience

This program is designed for all psychiatrists in clinical practice, residents in Graduate Medical Education programs, medical students interested in psychiatry, and other physicians who wish to advance their current knowledge of clinical medicine.

Estimated Time to Complete

Duration: 1 hour
Begin Date: May 1, 2020
End Date: April 30, 2022

How to Earn Credit

In order to earn CME credit, subscribers should read through the material presented in the article. After reading the article, complete the quiz and submit your evaluation and study hours (up to 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™).  A score of 60% or higher is required to receive credit.


The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The APA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Faculty and Planner Disclosures

Title: Age Differences in the Neural Correlates of Anxiety Disorders: An fMRI Study of Response to Learned Threat

Authors: Andrea L. Gold, Ph.D., Rany Abend, Ph.D., Jennifer C. Britton, Ph.D., Brigid Behrens, B.S., Madeline Farber, M.S., Emily Ronkin, M.A., Gang Chen, Ph.D., Ellen Leibenluft, M.D., Daniel S. Pine, M.D.

Affiliations: Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and Pediatric Anxiety Research Center, Bradley Hospital, Riverside, R.I. (A.L.G.); Emotion and Development Branch, NIMH, Bethesda, Md. (R.A., B.B., M.F., E.R., E.L., D.S.P.); Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, Fla. (J.C.B.); Scientific and Statistical Computing Core, NIMH, Bethesda, Md. (G.C.).

Disclosures: The authors report no financial relationships with commercial interests.

Discussion of unapproved or investigational use of products*: No.

*APA policy requires disclosure by CME authors of unapproved or investigational use of products discussed in CME programs. Off-label use of medications by individual physicians is permitted and common. Decisions about off-label use can be guided by scientific literature and clinical experience.

Program Planners

Ned H. Kalin, M.D. (Editor-in-Chief, AJP); Carolyn Rodriguez, M.D., Ph.D. (Deputy Editor, AJP); Michael D. Roy (Editorial Director, AJP); Michael A. Pogachar (Online Content Manager, Journals). Dr. Kalin has served as a consultant to the Board of Scientific Advisors, the Pritzker Neuropsychiatric Disorders Research Consortium, and the Skyland Trail Advisory Board and as Councilor, Society of Biological Psychiatry. Dr. Rodriguez has served as a consultant to Allergan, Blackthorn, Epiodyne, and Rugen. Mr. Roy and Mr. Pogachar report no financial relationships with commercial interests.


Hardware/Software Requirements

This internet-based CME activity is best experienced using Internet Explorer 8+, Mozilla Firefox 3+, Safari 4+. This Web site requires that JavaScript and session cookies be enabled. Certain activities may require additional software to view multimedia, presentation, or printable versions of the content. These activities will be marked as such and will provide links to the required software. That software may be: Adobe Flash, Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft PowerPoint, and Windows Media Player.


Optimal System Configuration:

  • Flash Player: Adobe Flash Player 10.1+ 
  • Browser: Firefox 3+, Internet Explorer 8.0+, Safari 4.0+, or Google Chrome 7.0+ 
  • Operating System: Windows XP+ or Mac OS X 10.4+ 
  • Internet Connection: 1 Mbps or higher
  • Screen Resolution: 1024 x 768 pixels.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Windows PC:500-MHz Pentium II; Windows XP or higher; 128 MB RAM; Video Card at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card at least 16-bit; Macromedia Flash Player 10 or higher, audio playback with speakers for programs with video content; Firefox 1.1+, Internet Explorer 7.0+, Safari 1.0+, Google Chrome, or Opera
  • Macintosh: Mac OS X 10.3 or higher with latest updates installed; 1.83MHz Intel Core Duo or faster; RAM: 128MB or more; Video Card: at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card: at least 16-bit

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