An RF excitation scheme is presented for anatomical imaging of occipital brain areas at 3T using the 3D modified driven equilibrium Fourier transform (MDEFT) sequence and a transmit-receive surface coil. Surface coils operated in the transmit mode usually display a high B(1) inhomogeneity. This causes variations of the flip angle and impairs fat saturation, resulting in blurring, signal losses, and artifacts due to high scalp intensities. A composite binomial pulse with one spectral component for water selective excitation and one spatial component for B(1) inhomogeneity compensation is presented. It is shown experimentally that the pulse prevents image blurring and reduces the scalp signal considerably. The total pulse duration of only 2.4 ms is compatible with the relatively short repetition times (TRs) required for MDEFT imaging. The method is particularly useful for certain applications in neuroimaging that require technical equipment that is too large for standard coils or should not be exposed to RF fields.
"Data were acquired at the Berlin NeuroImaging Center (Germany) on a 1.5-T MR scanner equipped with a circular-polarized head coil (Siemens Sonata, Erlangen, Germany) with an T2*-weighted single-shot gradient echo planar imaging sequence: 35 slices (interleaved), 3 mm isotropic resolution, 64 × 64 matrix, FOV = 192 mm, TE = 40 ms, TR = 2.00 s, flip angle = 90°, 1640 AC-PC oriented images for each run. Before functional runs, 176 anatomical T1-weighted slices were acquired (spatial resolution 1 mm × 1 mm × 1 mm, TR = 12.24 ms, TE = 3.56 ms, flip angle = 23°, 256 × 224 matrix; Deichmann, 2005). A vacuum head cushion was used to immobilize the participants’ heads and necks in order to reduce movement artifacts. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: With the present study we investigated cue-induced preparation in a Simon task and measured electroencephalogram and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data in two within-subjects sessions. Cues informed either about the upcoming (1) spatial stimulus-response compatibility (rule cues), or (2) the stimulus location (position cues), or (3) were non-informative. Only rule cues allowed anticipating the upcoming compatibility condition. Position cues allowed anticipation of the upcoming location of the Simon stimulus but not its compatibility condition. Rule cues elicited fastest and most accurate performance for both compatible and incompatible trials. The contingent negative variation (CNV) in the event-related potential (ERP) of the cue-target interval is an index of anticipatory preparation and was magnified after rule cues. The N2 in the post-target ERP as a measure of online action control was reduced in Simon trials after rule cues. Although compatible trials were faster than incompatible trials in all cue conditions only non-informative cues revealed a compatibility effect in additional indicators of Simon task conflict like accuracy and the N2. We thus conclude that rule cues induced anticipatory re-coding of the Simon task that did not involve cognitive conflict anymore. fMRI revealed that rule cues yielded more activation of the left rostral, dorsal, and ventral prefrontal cortex as well as the pre-SMA as compared to POS and NON-cues. Pre-SMA and ventrolateral prefrontal activation after rule cues correlated with the effective use of rule cues in behavioral performance. Position cues induced a smaller CNV effect and exhibited less prefrontal and pre-SMA contributions in fMRI. Our data point to the importance to disentangle different anticipatory adjustments that might also include the prevention of upcoming conflict via task re-coding.
Frontiers in Psychology 02/2013; 4:47. DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00047 · 2.80 Impact Factor
"Stimuli were generated using Presentation (Neurobehavioral Systems) and were projected by means of a mirror system attached to the head coil. Anatomical high-resolution T1-weighted scans (spatial resolution 1 × 1 × 1 mm, TR = 12.24 ms, TE= 3.56 ms, flip angle= 23°, 256 × 224 matrix) (Deichmann, 2005) were acquired during the training session of the MID task. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is associated with dysfunctional brain activity in several regions which are also involved in the processing of motivational stimuli. Processing of reward and punishment appears to be of special importance to understand clinical symptoms. There is evidence for higher sensitivity to punishment in patients with OCD which raises the question how avoidance of punishment relates to activity within the brain's reward circuitry. We employed the monetary incentive delay task paradigm optimized for modeling the anticipation phase of immediate reward and punishment, in the context of a cross-sectional event-related FMRI study comparing OCD patients and healthy control participants (n = 19 in each group). While overall behavioral performance was similar in both groups, patients showed increased activation upon anticipated losses in a medial and superior frontal cortex region extending into the cingulate cortex, and decreased activation upon anticipated rewards. No evidence was found for altered activation of dorsal or ventral striatal regions. Patients also showed more delayed responses for anticipated rewards than for anticipated losses whereas the reverse was true in healthy participants. The medial prefrontal cortex has been shown to implement a domain-general process comprising negative affect, pain and cognitive control. This process uses information about punishment to control aversively motivated actions by integrating signals arriving from subcortical regions. Our results support the notion that OCD is associated with altered sensitivity to anticipated rewards and losses in a medial prefrontal region whereas there is no significant aberrant activation in ventral or dorsal striatal brain regions during processing of reinforcement anticipation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Research indicates that dysfunctional food reward processing may contribute to pathological eating behaviour. It is widely recognized that both the amygdala and the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) are essential parts of the brain's reward circuitry. The aims of this fMRI study were (1) to examine the effects of food deprivation and calorie content on reward processing in the amygdala and the OFC, and (2) to examine whether an explicit evaluation of foods is necessary for OFC, but not amygdalar activity. Addressing the first aim, healthy females were presented with high and low calorie food pictures while being either hungry or satiated. For the second aim, attention focus was manipulated by directing participants' attention either to the food or to a neutral aspect. This study shows that hunger interacts with the energy content of foods, modulating activity in the posterior cingulate cortex, medial OFC, insula, caudate putamen and fusiform gyrus. Results show that satiated healthy females show an increased reward processing in response to low calorie foods. Confirming our hypothesis, food deprivation increased activity following the presentation of high calorie foods, which may explain why treatments of obesity energy restricting diets often are unsuccessful. Interestingly, activity in both the amygdala and mOFC was only evident when participants explicitly evaluated foods. However, attention independent activity was found in the mPFC following the high calorie foods cues when participants where hungry. Current findings indicate that research on how attention modulates food reward processing might prove especially insightful in the study of the neural substrates of healthy and pathological eating behaviour.
Behavioural brain research 12/2008; 198(1):149-58. DOI:10.1016/j.bbr.2008.10.035 · 3.03 Impact Factor
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