Prefrontal cortex and cognitive control: motivating functional hierarchies.

Nature Neuroscience (Impact Factor: 14.98). 08/2009; 12(7):821-2. DOI: 10.1038/nn0709-821
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose The aim is to examine the resting state functional connectivity (RSFC) between the two hemispheres and its relationships with clinical characteristic in idiopathic generalized epilepsy with generalized tonic-clonic seizures only (IGE-GTCS) patients using a technique called “voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC)”. Methods The Resting-state functional MRI (Rs-fMRI) was used to measure the RSFC in patients with IGE-GTC and age-gender matched healthy subjects. The between-group difference in interhemispheric RSFC was examined after the interhemispheric RSFC map was obtained by an automated VMHC approach. Results Compared to the controls, the IGE-GTCS patients showed significant increases in VMHC in the bilateral anterior cingulate and medial prefrontal gyrus. No areas showed decreased VMHC in patients. Moreover, the VMHC in bilateral thalamus, orbital frontal cortex as well as cerebellum showed significant negative correlations with the illness duration. Conclusions The current findings provide preliminary evidence of increased interhemispheric RSFC in patients with IGE-GTCS during the interictal period. These VMHC deficits in these regions and the inverse relations between VMHC and clinical characteristic may play an important role in the pathophysiology of IGE-GTCS. Our study may contribute to the understanding of neuro-pathophysiological mechanism of epilepsy and psychosocial function impairments in patients with IGE-GTCS.
    Epilepsy Research 10/2014; · 2.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Insights into neurobiological mechanisms of depression are increasingly being sought via brain imaging studies. Our aim was to quantitatively summarize overlap and diver-gence in regions of altered brain activation associated with depression under emotionally valenced compared to cognitively demanding task conditions, and with reference to intrin-sic functional connectivity. We hypothesized differences reflective of task demands. A co-ordinate-based meta-analysis technique, activation likelihood estimation, was used to analyze relevant imaging literature. These studies compared brain activity in depressed adults relative to healthy controls during three conditions: (i) emotionally valenced (cog-nitively easy) tasks (n = 29); (ii) cognitively demanding tasks (n = 15); and (iii) resting conditions (n = 21). The meta-analyses identified five, eight, and seven significant clus-ters of altered brain activity under emotion, cognition, and resting conditions, respectively, in depressed individuals compared to healthy controls. Regions of overlap and divergence between pairs of the three separate meta-analyses were quantified. There were no sig-nificant regions of overlap between emotion and cognition meta-analyses, but several divergent clusters were found. Cognitively demanding conditions were associated with greater activation of right medial frontal and insula regions while bilateral amygdala was more significantly altered during emotion (cognitively undemanding) conditions; consistent with task demands. Overlap was present in left amygdala and right subcallosal cingulate between emotion and resting meta-analyses, with no significant divergence. Our meta-analyses highlight alteration of common brain regions, during cognitively undemanding emotional tasks and resting conditions but divergence of regions between emotional and cognitively demanding tasks. Regions altered reflect current biological and system-level models of depression and highlight the relationship with task condition and difficulty.
    Frontiers in Psychology 02/2015; 8. · 2.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studies using transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) of prefrontal cortex to improve symptoms of depression have had mixed results. We examined whether using tDCS to change the balance of activity between left and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) can alter mood and memory retrieval of emotional material in healthy volunteers. Participants memorised emotional images, then tDCS was applied bilaterally to DLPFC while they performed a stimulus-response compatibility task. Participants were then presented with a set of images for memory retrieval. Questionnaires to examine mood and motivational state were administered at the beginning and end of each session. Exploratory data analyses showed that the polarity of tDCS to DLPFC influenced performance on a stimulus-response compatibility task and this effect was dependent on participants' prior motivational state. However, tDCS polarity had no effect on the speed or accuracy of memory retrieval of emotional images and did not influence positive or negative affect. These findings suggest that the balance of activity between left and right DLPFC does not play a critical role in the mood state of healthy individuals. We suggest that the efficacy of prefrontal tDCS depends on the initial activation state of neurons and future work should take this into account.
    PLoS ONE 03/2014; 9(3):e92162. · 3.53 Impact Factor

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