Frontopolar activation during face-to-face conversation: An in situ study using near-infrared spectroscopy

Department of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Gunma University Graduate School of Medicine, Maebashi, Gunma, Japan.
Neuropsychologia (Impact Factor: 3.45). 10/2009; 48(2):441-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.09.036
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is a functional brain imaging technique for monitoring brain activation in a natural setting using near-infrared light, and hence, is considered to have some advantages for studies of brain function during social interactions such as face-to-face conversation compared with functional magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography, which have methodological constraints for studying brain mechanisms underlying social interactions: subjects have to lie down on a bed in a small gantry during examination. The purpose of this study was to validate the possible use of NIRS as a functional brain imaging technique for studying social interactions in a natural setting; therefore, we investigated frontal and temporal lobe activation during face-to-face conversation in healthy subjects in the sitting position. The frontal and superior temporal regions were activated during face-to-face conversation, with higher activity in the speaking segments than in the mute segments during conversation particularly in frontopolar NIRS channels. The magnitude of frontopolar activity negatively correlated with the cooperativeness score of the subjects assessed using the temperament and character inventory. These results demonstrated the successful monitoring of brain function during realistic social interactions using NIRS and interindividual differences in frontopolar activity during conversation in relation to the cooperativeness of an individual.

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Available from: Yuichi Takei, Apr 22, 2015
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    • "However, in all of these studies, participants are, at best, detached observers of short, unrelated fragments of conversations, between people they don't know and don't care about. A number of recent studies (e.g., Dumas, Nadel et al., 2010; Dumas, Chavez, et al., 2012; Stephens, Silbert, & Hasson, 2010; Suda et al., 2010; for an overview see Babiloni & Astolfi, 2012) took issue with that, and started to investigate participants actively taking part in an interaction. Unfortunately, these studies had to restrict themselves to looking at very global measures of contiguity and synchronicity of processing; none of them takes into account what participants say to each other, when they say it, and how they say it. "
    The Oxford Handbook of Language and Social Psychology, Edited by Thomas Holtgraves, 06/2014: chapter Electrophysiological research on conversation and discourse processing: pages 47; Oxford University Press.
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    • "However , the patient population and methodology varied across these studies. For example, Uehara et al. (2007) did not evaluate the relevance of clinical symptoms [11], Suda et al. (2010) excluded patients with body mass index (BMI) less than 14.5 kg/m 2 to exclude the effect of malnutrition [12], Nagamitsu et al. (2011) studied children [13], and Sutoh et al. (2013) studied patients with AN with relatively high BMI (mean ± SD, 17.0 ± 3.1 kg/m 2 ) [14]. Some patients with ED experience feelings of social self-doubt and unhappiness, which may have implications for treatment [15]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Functional neuroimaging techniques are widely used to elucidate changes in brain activity, and various questionnaires are used to investigate psychopathological features in patients with eating disorders (ED). It is well known that social skills and interpersonal difficulties are strongly associated with the psychopathology of patients with ED. However, few studies have examined the association between brain activity and social relationships in patients with ED, particularly in patients with extremely low body weight. Methods In this study, 22-channel near-infrared spectroscopy was used to quantify regional hemodynamic changes during a letter fluency task (LFT) in 20 female patients with ED with a mean body mass index of 14.0 kg/m2and 31 female controls (CTLs). Symptoms were assessed using the Eating Disorder Inventory-2 and Beck Depression Inventory. We hypothesized that frontal activity in patients with ED would be lower than in CTLs and would show different correlations with psychopathological features compared with CTLs. Results The LFT performance and score on the social insecurity subscale of the Eating Disorder Inventory-2 were significantly higher in the ED group than in the CTL group. The mean change in oxygenated hemoglobin (oxy-Hb) in bilateral frontal regions during the LFT was significantly smaller in the ED group than in the CTL group. Social insecurity score was positively correlated with the concentration of oxy-Hb in the bilateral orbitofrontal cortex in the ED group but not in the CTL group. Conclusions These results suggest that activity of the orbitofrontal cortex is associated with social insecurity and disturbed in patients with ED. Therefore, disturbed orbitofrontal cortex activity may underlie the lack of insight and social isolation that is characteristic of patients with ED.
    BMC Psychiatry 06/2014; 14(1):173. DOI:10.1186/1471-244X-14-173 · 2.24 Impact Factor
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    • "Ochsner & Lieberman, 2001; Frith & Frith, 2001; Cacioppo, 2002; Insel & Fernald, 2004; Gallese et al., 2004; Blakemore et al., 2004; Saxe, 2006; Senior & Rippon, 2006; Cacioppo et al., 2007; Behrens et al., 2009; Adolphs, 2009; Hari & Kujala, 2009; Schilbach, 2010; Farah, 2011). The entire non-invasive armamentarium of the neurosciences has been harnessed toward the goal of discovering neural mechanisms of human social behavior, for instance using EEG (Babiloni et al., 2002; Sebanz et al., 2006; Tognoli et al., 2007 a ; Lindenberger et al., 2009; Dumas, et al., 2010; De Vico Fallani, 2010), MEG (Hari et al., 1998), PET (Decety et al., 2002), fMRI (Iacoboni et al., 1999; Montague et al., 2002; Beauchamp et al., 2003; Olsson & Phelps, 2007; Izuma et al., 2008; Schilbach et al., 2010; Saito et al, 2010; Guionnet et al., 2012) and optical imaging (Suda et al, 2010; Funane et al., 2011). The stakes are high: knowledge of the brain mechanisms involved in social behaviors has tended to lag far behind knowledge of the individual brain. "
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    ABSTRACT: Social behavior is a complex integrative function that entails many aspects of the brain's sensory, cognitive, emotional and motor capacities. Neural processes are seldom simultaneous but occur according to precise temporal and coordinative choreographies within and between brains. Methods with good temporal resolution such as EEG can help to identify so-called "neuromarkers" of social function (Tognoli, et al., 2007) and aid in disentangling the dynamical architecture of social brains. We have studied neuromarkers and their dynamics during synchronic interactions in which pairs of subjects coordinate behavior spontaneously and intentionally (social coordination) and during diachronic transactions that required subjects to perceive or behave in turn (action observation and delayed imitation). We examined commonalities and differences in the neuromarkers that are recruited for both kinds of tasks. We found that the neuromarker landscape was task-specific: synchronic paradigms of social coordination revealed medial mu, alpha and the phi complex as contributing neuromarkers. Diachronic tasks recruited alpha as well, in addition to lateral mu rhythms and the newly discovered nu and kappa rhythms whose functional significance is still unclear. Social coordination, observation, and delayed imitation share commonality of context: in our experiments, subjects exchanged information through visual perception and moved in similar ways. Nonetheless, there was little overlap between the neuromarkers recruited for synchronic and diachronic tasks, a result that hints strongly of task-specific neural mechanisms for social behaviors. The only neuromarker that transcended both synchronic and diachronic social behaviors was the ubiquitous alpha rhythm, which appears to be a key signature of visually-mediated social behaviors. The present paper is both an entry point and a challenge...
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