A developmental neurobiological model of motivated behavior: Anatomy, connectivity and ontogeny of the triadic nodes
ABSTRACT Adolescence is the transition period that prepares individuals for fulfilling their role as adults. Most conspicuous in this transition period is the peak level of risk-taking behaviors that characterize adolescent motivated behavior. Significant neural remodeling contributes to this change. This review focuses on the functional neuroanatomy underlying motivated behavior, and how ontogenic changes can explain the typical behavioral patterns in adolescence. To help model these changes and provide testable hypotheses, a neural systems-based theory is presented. In short, the Triadic Model proposes that motivated behavior is governed by a carefully orchestrated articulation among three systems, approach, avoidance and regulatory. These three systems map to distinct, but overlapping, neural circuits, whose representatives are the striatum, the amygdala and the medial prefrontal cortex. Each of these system-representatives will be described from a functional anatomy perspective that includes a review of their connectivity and what is known of their ontogenic changes.
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ABSTRACT: Structural MRI studies have identified a link between cortical maturation and temperamental effortful control (EC), which is a trait-like risk factor for psychopathology during adolescence. However, little research has explored the underlying neural basis of EC in adults. We aimed to examine the relationship between EC and brain structure in young adults. High-resolution T1-weighted images were acquired from 27 undergraduates who completed the Adult Temperament Questionnaire-short form. The data were analyzed with SPM8 using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). A priori region of interest (ROI) analyses indicated that EC was positively associated with gray matter volumes in brain regions that included the bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the left supplementary motor area, the right orbitofrontal cortex, the left anterior cingulate cortex, and the left superior and inferior parietal lobes. These results suggest that temperamental EC in young adults is related to variations in gray matter volumes, particularly within the frontoparietal attention network, and yield insight into the relation between the vulnerability to psychopathology and the neurobiological basis of individual differences in temperamental EC. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.Psychiatry Research Neuroimaging 05/2015; 233(1). DOI:10.1016/j.pscychresns.2015.04.009 · 2.83 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Social decision making is guided by the ability to intuitively judge personal attributes, including analysis of facial features to infer the trustworthiness of others. While the neural basis for trustworthiness evaluation is well characterized in adults, less is known about its development during adolescence. We used event-related fMRI to examine age-related changes in neural activation and functional connectivity during the evaluation of trust in faces in a sample of adolescent females. During scanning, participants viewed masked presentations of faces and rated their trustworthiness. Parametric modeling of trust ratings revealed enhanced activation in amygdala and insula to untrustworthy faces, effects which peaked during mid-adolescence. Analysis of amygdala functional connectivity demonstrated enhanced amygdala-insula coupling during the evaluation of untrustworthy faces. This boost in connectivity was attenuated during mid-adolescence, suggesting a functional transition within face processing circuits. Together, these findings underscore adolescence as a period of reorganization in neural circuits underlying socioemotional behavior.Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience 03/2014; 10(2). DOI:10.1093/scan/nsu050 · 5.88 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The reinforcing effects of aversive outcomes on avoidance behaviour are well established. However, their influence on perceptual processes are less well explored, especially during the transition from adolescence to adulthood. Using EEG, we examined whether learning to actively or passively avoid harm can modulate early visual responses in adolescents and adults. The task included two avoidance conditions, active and passive, where two different warning stimuli predicted the imminent, but avoidable, presentation of an aversive tone. To avoid the aversive outcome, participants had to learn to emit an action (active avoidance) for one of the warning stimuli, and omit an action for the other (passive avoidance). Both adults and adolescents performed the task with a high degree of accuracy. For both adolescents and adults, increased N170 ERP amplitudes were found for both the active and passive warning stimuli compared to control conditions. Moreover, the potentiation of the N170 to the warning stimuli was stable and long lasting. Developmental differences were also observed; adolescents showed greater potentiation of the N170 component to danger signals. These findings demonstrate, for the first time, that learned danger signals in an instrumental avoidance task can influence early visual sensory processes in both adults and adolescents.Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience 03/2014; 10(2). DOI:10.1093/scan/nsu048 · 5.88 Impact Factor