Attention to aversive emotion and specific activation of the right insula and right somatosensory cortex
ABSTRACT The evaluation of emotional stimuli is based on different levels of information processing, ranging from rather automatic processes to focused attention to the emotional relevance of stimuli. The role of specific brain areas for these processes is a matter of debate. In this event-related fMRI study, we varied the information processing mode of participants exposed to aversive and neutral pictures. Based on four different tasks, participants' attentional focus onto the emotional quality of the stimuli and the own emotional involvement was increased systematically across tasks. Regardless of task, stronger activation to threatening vs. neutral pictures was found in several regions such as the amygdala, anterior insula, anterior cingulate cortex, primary somatosensory cortex and medial prefrontal cortex. However, there was a parametric increase of activation with increasing attention to one's own emotion specifically in the right posterior insula and right primary and secondary somatosensory cortex, i.e. in areas implicated in self-awareness of a person's own body. These findings are in accordance with theories suggesting a crucial role of the perception of bodily states for emotional experiences.
- SourceAvailable from: Takashi Ikeda
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- ", 1998 ) . For example , fear - related pictures increase activation in the right posterior insula and secondary somatosensory cortex ( Straube and Miltner , 2011 ) . Taken together , activation within the amygdala and insula in response to disharmonious combinations might have important biological implications . "
ABSTRACT: Observing paired colors with a different hue (in terms of chroma and lightness) engenders pleasantness from such harmonious combinations; however, negative reactions can emerge from disharmonious combinations. Currently, neural mechanisms underlying the esthetic and emotional aspects of color perception remain unknown. The current study reports evidence regarding the neural correlates of color harmony and disharmony. Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to assess brain regions activated by harmonious or disharmonious color combinations in comparison to other stimuli. Results showed that the left medial orbitofrontal cortex (mOFC) and left amygdala were activated when participants observed harmonious and disharmonious stimuli, respectively. Taken together, these findings suggest that color disharmony may depend on stimulus properties and more automatic neural processes mediated by the amygdala, whereas color harmony is harder to discriminate based on color characteristics and is reflected by the esthetic value represented in the mOFC. This study has a limitation that we could not exclude the effect of preference for color combination, which has a strong positive correlation with color harmony.Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 01/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2015.00382 · 2.90 Impact Factor
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- "The same regions were found to be active when contrasting unpleasant with neutral pictures. It has been shown repeatedly that the human insula is involved in tasks that challenge the representation of bodily states as well as processing of emotions (Craig, 2009; Gu et al., 2010; Fan et al., 2011), especially for aversive emotions such as disgust and threat (Phillips et al., 1997, 1998; Adolphs, 2002; Straube and Miltner, 2011). Reliable co-variation of the insula and peri-insula with the LPP during aversive perception demonstrates that these structures contribute to the modulation of cortical potential during aversive events. "
ABSTRACT: The late positive potential (LPP) is a reliable electrophysiological index of emotional perception in humans. Despite years of research, the brain structures that contribute to the generation and modulation of LPP are not well understood. Recording EEG and fMRI simultaneously, and applying a recently proposed single-trial ERP analysis method, we addressed the problem by correlating the single-trial LPP amplitude evoked by affective pictures with the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) activity. Three results were found. First, relative to neutral pictures, pleasant and unpleasant pictures elicited enhanced LPP, as well as heightened BOLD activity in both visual cortices and emotion-processing structures such as amygdala and prefrontal cortex, consistent with previous findings. Second, the LPP amplitude across three picture categories was significantly correlated with BOLD activity in visual cortices, temporal cortices, amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, and insula. Third, within each picture category, LPP-BOLD coupling revealed category-specific differences. For pleasant pictures, the LPP amplitude was coupled with BOLD in occipitotemporal junction, medial prefrontal cortex, amygdala, and precuneus, whereas for unpleasant pictures significant LPP-BOLD correlation was observed in ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, insula, and posterior cingulate cortex. These results suggest that LPP is generated and modulated by an extensive brain network composed of both cortical and subcortical structures associated with visual and emotional processing and the degree of contribution by each of these structures to the LPP modulation is valence specific.The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 10/2012; 32(42):14563-72. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3109-12.2012 · 6.75 Impact Factor
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- "These areas are also thought to play a crucial role in the understanding of visually presented emotions via a matching process between the emotional expression of a perceived face and an internal representation of one's own somatic state coupled with such emotion (Adolphs, 2002; Gallese and Goldman, 1998). This latter hypothesis has found varying experimental support from Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and neuroimaging studies (Banissy et al., 2010, 2011; Gazzola and Keysers, 2009; Jackson et al., 2005; Keysers and Perrett, 2004; Pitcher et al., 2008; Pourtois et al., 2004; Singer et al., 2004; Straube and Miltner, 2011; Wicker et al., 2003). In addition, lesions of the right somatosensory cortex were shown to be associated with severe difficulties in recognizing both facial (Adolphs et al., 2000) and body expressions of emotion (Heberlein et al., 2004). "
ABSTRACT: In a social context, the direction of the body of surrounding agents indicates whether one is the potential target of an impending action or simply an observer, and thus influences the way one processes and reacts to their emotional expressions. The present functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment investigated how self-relevance influences anger processing in the brain by independently manipulating target (oriented to self or to other) and emotion (neutral and anger). The perception of body expression of anger elicits activity in a previously identified network that includes the amygdala, the fusiform gyrus, the superior temporal sulcus and the premotor cortex. Activity within this network is independent of body direction and is parametrically modulated by the intensity of the bodily emotional expression. Moreover, the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and somatosensory cortices responded preferentially to anger expressions oriented to self. We suggest that these brain areas may participate in the selection of specific behavioural strategies when one is the potential target of someone's anger.Cortex 09/2012; 49(8). DOI:10.1016/j.cortex.2012.08.025 · 6.04 Impact Factor