Perceived social support moderates the link between threat-related amygdala reactivity and trait anxiety. Neuropsychologia

Department of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260, USA.
Neuropsychologia (Impact Factor: 3.45). 03/2011; 49(4):651-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2010.08.025
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Several lines of research have illustrated that negative environments can precipitate psychopathology, particularly in the context of relatively increased biological risk, while social resources can buffer the effects of these environments. However, little research has examined how social resources might buffer proximal biological risk for psychopathology or the neurobiological pathways through which such buffering may be mediated. Here we report that the expression of trait anxiety as a function of threat-related amygdala reactivity is moderated by perceived social support, a resource for coping with adversity. A significant positive correlation between amygdala reactivity and trait anxiety was evident in individuals reporting below average levels of support but not in those reporting average or above average levels. These results were consistent across multiple measures of trait anxiety and were specific to anxiety in that they did not extend to measures of broad negative or positive affect. Our findings illuminate a biological pathway, namely moderation of amygdala-related anxiety, through which social support may confer resilience to psychopathology. Moreover, our results indicate that links between neural reactivity and behavior are not static but rather may be contingent on social resources.

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    • "Moreover, amygdala activation in response to happy facial expression was associated with the personality trait extraversion (Canli et al., 2002; Canli, 2004), that might have some associations with generalized self-efficacy. Furthermore, PSS was found to moderate the relation between amygdala activity in response to fearful and angry facial expressions and anxiety trait, such that only low PSS predicted the relation between amygdala activity and anxiety trait (Hyde et al., 2011). Taken together, these different findings call for future studies that will enable their integration into a single comprehensive framework using diverse methodologies to measure functional signal in face related regions and the connectivity between these regions, as well as genetic, self and face processing measures. "
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    Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 08/2014; 8:602. DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2014.00602 · 2.90 Impact Factor
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    • "Associations of FFM-Psychopathy and FFM-APD scores with amygdala reactivity were examined in regressions using IBM SPSS statistics v.20. Consistent with past studies (e.g., Hyde et al., 2011) gender was controlled for in all regressions given its main effect on amygdala reactivity in this sample (see Table 1). 1 In all regression analyses, extracted amygdala reactivity values were regressed first on APD or psychopathy scores separately, and then onto APD and psychopathy scores simultaneously to assess for overlapping versus unique relationships between psychopathy and APD dimensions and amygdala reactivity. As APD and psychopathy trait scores demonstrated a high correlation (see Table 1), collinearity was a concern and thus tolerance was monitored with scores below 0.10 considered problematic (Cohen, Cohen, West, & Aiken, 2003). "
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    • "In addition to producing the necessary values for the identification of latent factors through CFA, extracting parameter estimates from functional clusters activated by our fMRI paradigm rather than clusters specifically correlated with our independent variables of interest, precludes the possibility of any correlation coefficient inflation that may result from capitalizing on the same data twice (Viviani, 2010). We have successfully used this more conservative and rigorous analytic strategy in recent studies (Carre et al., in press; Hyde et al., 2011). "
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