The Role of Tryptophan and Tyrosine in Executive Function and Reward Processing

Luca Aquili

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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The serotonergic precursor tryptophan and the dopaminergic precursor tyrosine have been shown to be important modulators of mood, behaviour and cognition. Specifically, research on the function of tryptophan has characterised this molecule as particularly relevant in the context of pathological disorders such as depression. Moreover, a large body of evidence has now been accumulated to suggest that tryptophan may also be involved in executive function and reward processing. Despite some clear differentiation with tryptophan, the data reviewed in this paper illustrates that tyrosine shares similar functions with tryptophan in the regulation of executive function and reward, and that these processes in turn, rather than acting in isolation, causally influence each other.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Tryptophan Research
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


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