Chiara Spironelli

Chiara Spironelli
University of Padova | UNIPD · Department of General Psychology

PhD

About

70
Publications
12,363
Reads
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1,198
Citations
Citations since 2017
24 Research Items
591 Citations
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
Additional affiliations
November 2018 - August 2021
University of Padova
Position
  • Professor (Associate)

Publications

Publications (70)
Article
Full-text available
Bipolar patients (BD) in the euthymic phase show almost no symptoms, nevertheless possibility of relapse is still present. We expected to find a psychobiological trace of their vulnerability by analyzing a specific network—the Language Network (LN)—connecting many high-level processes and brain regions measured at rest. According to Crow’s hypothes...
Article
Full-text available
Past voxel-based morphometry (VBM) studies demonstrate reduced grey matter volume (GMV) in schizophrenia (SZ) patients’ brains in various cortical and subcortical regions. Probably due to SZ symptoms’ heterogeneity, these results are often inconsistent and difficult to integrate. We hypothesized that focusing on auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH)...
Article
Although alterations of the default mode network (DMN) in schizophrenia (SZ) have been largely investigated, less research has been carried out on DMN alterations in different sub-phenotypes of this disorder. The aim of this pilot study was to compare DMN features among SZ patients with and without auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH). Three groups...
Article
Full-text available
Films, compared with emotional static pictures, represent true-to-life dynamic stimuli that are both ecological and effective in inducing an emotional response given the involvement of multimodal stimulation (i.e., visual and auditory systems). We hypothesized that a direct comparison between the two methods would have shown greater efficacy of mov...
Article
Full-text available
In recent years, many studies have focused on resting-state brain activity, and especially on functional connectivity (FC), an approach that typically describes the statistical interdependence of activity in distant brain regions through specific networks. Our aim was to study the neurophysiological correlates of emotion dysregulation. Therefore, w...
Article
Full-text available
The number of elements in a small set of items is appraised in a fast and exact manner, a phenomenon called subitizing. In contrast, humans provide imprecise responses when comparing larger numerosities, with decreasing precision as the number of elements increases. Estimation is thought to rely on a dedicated system for the approximate representat...
Article
Full-text available
In the last few decades, the incidence of mood disorders skyrocketed worldwide and has brought an increasing human and economic burden. Depending on the main symptoms and their evolution across time, they can be classified in several clinical subgroups. A few psychobiological indices have been extensively investigated as promising markers of mood d...
Article
The current pilot study aimed to test the gains of working memory (WM) training, both at the short- and long-term, at a behavioral level, and by examining the electrophysiological changes induced by training in resting-state EEG activity among older adults. The study group included 24 older adults (from 64 to 75 years old) who were randomly assigne...
Article
Bipolar disorder (BD) is a psychiatric condition causing acute dysfunctional mood states and emotion regulation. Specific neuropsychological features are often present also among patients in euthymic phase, who do not show clear psychotic symptoms, and for whom the characterization from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is very limited....
Article
Full-text available
Introduction Major depression (MD) is associated with cognitive and behavioral alterations in many domains. It is not well clear what cortical structures and functional alterations characterize MD patients during resting state, a condition during which mind wandering process is prevailing. Objectives In MD patients with severe levels of depression...
Article
Full-text available
Language-induced asymmetry to single word reading has been well investigated in past research. Less known are the complex processes and related asymmetries occurring when a word is compared with the previous one, according to specific tasks. To this end, we used a paradigm based on 80 sequential word pair comparisons and three blocked tasks: phonol...
Article
Full-text available
This study aimed to investigate emotional alterations in a community sample with primary psychopathic traits. Sixty males selected from a larger sample and divided in two groups, High (HP) and Low (LP) primary Psychopathy, watched 15 validated emotional movies divided in five categories (Erotic, Neutral, Fear, and the new Scenery and Compassion). S...
Article
Older adults typically show poor performance in tasks assessing working memory (WM), a crucial cognitive mechanism. The present study examined the electrophysiological correlates of a classic complex WM task often used in studies involving older adults, the Categorization Working Memory Span task (CWMS), by means of event-related potentials. Thirty...
Article
Full-text available
Major depression (MDD) has been associated with an altered EEG frontal asymmetry measured in resting state; nevertheless, this association has showed a weak consistency across studies. In the present study, which starts from an evolutionistic view of psychiatric disorders, we investigated frontal asymmetry in MDD, using language as a probe to test...
Article
Multitasking is ubiquitous in everyday life. It can have a detrimental effect on several cognitive abilities including spatial processing in both brain-damaged and healthy participants. The present study investigated, in healthy adults, the electrophysiological mechanisms associated with correct detection vs. misdetection of peripheral visual targe...
Article
Full-text available
Aim The ability to discern commonalities and differences in the neurobiology of functional psychoses represents a key element to unmask shared vulnerability across different psychiatric conditions. The present study sought to compare the automatic visual attention mechanisms in three psychiatric disorders considered to distribute along the continuu...
Conference Paper
Empathy underlies the ability to understand others’ emotional state and resonate with them in a coherent response. In order to increase our knowledge of how empathy affects emotional reactivity, the present study investigated the relationship between trait empathic abilities and cortical activation during different affective states elicited by ecol...
Conference Paper
The present study investigated the relationship between high trait levels of primary psychopathy, subjective emotional experience and cortical activity in the Gamma band (30 – 49 Hz), during different affective states elicited with ecological emotional stimuli. 58 male participants were divided in two groups, High (28) and Low (30) primary psychopa...
Article
A lack of empathy, interpersonal dominance, aggression and the exploitation of others are the key features of both narcissism and psychopathic disorders. With the aim to better capture the shared facets of these traits, this study developed a new tool named the Capability to Influence Others (CIO) Inventory, which is based on the pleasantness evalu...
Article
Full-text available
Horizontal body position is a posture typically adopted for sleeping or during brain imaging recording in both neuroscience experiments and diagnostic situations. Recent literature showed how this position and similar ones with head down are associated to reduced plasticity, impaired pain and emotional responses. The present study aimed at further...
Article
The present research investigated the hypothesis that elderly and horizontal body position contribute to impair learning capacity. To this aim, 30 young (mean age: 23.2 years) and 20 elderly women (mean age: 82.8 years) were split in two equal groups, one assigned to the Seated Position (SP), and the other to the horizontal Bed Rest position (hBR)....
Article
Unilateral Spatial Neglect, the most dramatic manifestation of contralesional space unawareness, is a highly heterogeneous syndrome. The presence of neglect is related to core spatially lateralized deficits, but its severity is also modulated by several domain-general factors (such as alertness or sustained attention) and by task demands. We previo...
Article
Full-text available
While the role of selective attention in filtering out irrelevant information has been extensively studied, its characteristics and neural underpinnings when multiple environmental stimuli have to be processed in parallel are much less known. Building upon a dual-task paradigm that induced spatial awareness deficits for contralesional hemispace in...
Article
Full-text available
The present study examined linguistic plastic reorganization of language through Evoked Potentials in a group of 17 non-fluent aphasic patients who had suffered left perisylvian focal lesions, and showed a good linguistic recovery. Language reorganisation was probed with three linguistic tasks (Phonological, Semantic, Orthographic), the early word...
Article
Full-text available
The present study investigated the influence of short-term horizontal body position on pain-related somatosensory processing, by measuring subjective and cortical responses to electrical pain stimulation. Twenty-eight healthy women were randomly assigned to either the experimental horizontal group (Bed Rest, BR) or to the sitting control group (Sit...
Article
Functional reorganization of language was investigated in a group of eleven non-fluent aphasic patients after linguistic recovery and in a group of matched healthy adults. The ElectroEncephaloGram (EEG) was recorded from 38 scalp electrodes and high-beta band (21-28 Hz), an index of cognitive cortical arousal, was computed as normalized percentage...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The occurrence of a significant relationship between psychopathic traits and intelligence is still open to debate. Most of the relevant information has been obtained from crystallized IQ tests or on psychopathic male offenders. In this study we hypothesized a negative correlation between psychopathic traits and fluid intelligence on a...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We studied the modulation of visuospatial awareness—and the resultant asymmetries across visual hemifields—induced by a dual-task manipulation that consumed the attentional resources available for spatial monitoring. Reaction times and detection rates for lateralized, briefly-presented, masked or unmasked visual target(s) were assessed in healthy p...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the consistent information available on the physiological changes induced by head down bed rest, a condition which simulates space microgravity, our knowledge on the possible perceptual-cortical alterations is still poor. The present study investigated the effects of 2-h head-down bed rest on subjective and cortical responses elicited by el...
Article
Full-text available
The present study was aimed at investigating the short-term plastic changes that follow word learning at a neurophysiological level. The main hypothesis was that word position (left or right visual field, LVF/RH or RVF/LH) in the initial learning phase would leave a trace that affected, in the subsequent recognition phase, the Recognition Potential...
Article
Objectives Spectral delta and gamma activity were recorded in 17 schizophrenia patients and 17 matched controls to study brain dysfunction/inhibition and functional linguistic impairment in different phases of written word processing. Methods Most of patients were suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and obtained relatively high rating in Delusio...
Article
Full-text available
Brain plasticity was investigated in 14 Italian children affected by developmental dyslexia after 6 months of phonological training. The means used to measure language reorganization was the recognition potential, an early wave, also called N150, elicited by automatic word recognition. This component peaks over the left temporo-occipital cortex and...
Article
This study aimed to clarify the functional role of several EEG bands across age by analyzing language hemispheric lateralization in three linguistic tasks. Twenty-eight children, 22 young adults and 20 middle-aged participants were administered the same sample of written words and normalized amplitudes of δ, ϑ, α and β bands were analyzed. Only you...
Article
Full-text available
Language lateralization in the auditory modality occurs relatively early in pre-school children. Instead, lateralization of linguistic processes involved in reading develops more slowly in parallel with learning to read. In adults there is limited evidence that language lateralization differs across genders. With the present experiment we aimed at...
Article
Linguistic EEG hemispheric reorganization was investigated in 14 dyslexic children after a 6-month phonological training (10 min/day through PC software). Error rates from three linguistic tasks significantly decreased and reading speed improved after the training. A significant positive correlation (r(12)=0.536) was found at posterior sites for th...
Article
Full-text available
Frontal hypoactivation has consistently been demonstrated in schizophrenia patients. We hypothesized that this well-known deficit is asymmetrical, ie, centered over left frontal locations and, in-line with Crow's theory, associated with both loss of linguistic asymmetry and correlated with positive symptoms. Electroencephalography delta band was us...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the study was to investigate, in patients with AD, the effects of one month cognitive stimulation training with the repetition of a cognitive task. Re- action times on answers and neural activity (ERPs) were measured during the execu- tion of the trained task and a control task. Pre- and post-training comparisons showed: (1) faster and m...
Article
Full-text available
T. J. Crow suggested that the genetic variance associated with the evolution in Homo sapiens of hemispheric dominance for language carries with it the hazard of the symptoms of schizophrenia. Individuals lacking the typical left hemisphere advantage for language, in particular for phonological components, would be at increased risk of the typical s...
Article
Full-text available
Recently, there has been a redirection of research efforts toward the exploration of the role of hemispheric lateralization in determining Simon effect asymmetries. The present study aimed at implementing a connectionist model that simulates the cognitive mechanisms implied by such asymmetries, focusing on the underlying neural structure. A left-la...
Article
Reading words elicits a very early evoked potential termed “recognition potential” with a latency of about 150 ms and clearly located in left posterior regions. A review of the current literature indicates that N150 marks the automatic lexical classification of a word, is relatively independent of the task, and is followed by a later negative and m...
Chapter
Full-text available
Electrophysiological measurements enabled us to greatly increase our knowledge on the most spread learning disability in childhood represented by the Developmental Dyslexia (DD). The present chapter reviews the most relevant studies, which used either Event Related Potentials (ERPs) or Electroencephalographic (EEG) bands to investigate reading disa...
Article
In this study spectral delta percentage was used to assess both brain dysfunction/inhibition and functional linguistic impairment during different phases of word processing. To this aim, EEG delta amplitude was measured in 17 chronic non-fluent aphasic patients while engaged in three linguistic tasks: Orthographic, Phonological and Semantic. Averag...
Article
The present study used delta EEG band to test the hypothesis of a cerebral maturational delay and a functional altered cerebral asymmetry for phonological processing in dyslexic children. A group of 14 children with dyslexia and 28 matched controls participated in a linguistic paradigm in which the same words were processed in three tasks: phonolog...
Article
Full-text available
In line with Crow's hypothesis, altered hemispheric lateralization of language would cause the main symptoms of schizophrenia. The present experiment aimed to demonstrate the loss of the hemispheric specialization for linguistic processing in schizophrenia patients at the level of early automatic evoked potentials (N150). A sample of 10 outpatients...
Article
With the present experiment we sought to investigate brain plasticity underlying language recovery in a group of seventeen patients with non-fluent aphasia mainly caused by stroke. Patients were screened along three domains of measures: analysis of linguistic components by the Aachener Aphasie Test, combined mapping of their lesion from CT/MRI scan...
Article
The phonological deficit hypothesis of dyslexia was studied by analyzing language-related lateralization of theta (4-8 Hz) and beta rhythms (13-30 Hz) during various phases of word processing in a sample of 14 dyslexics and 28 controls. Using a word-pair paradigm, the same words were contrasted in three different tasks: Phonological, Semantic and O...
Article
In the present study, event related brain potentials (ERPs) showed that, in an implicit Lexical decision task in which participants had to decide whether a word or a pseudoword was presented, a very early distinction between Mass and Count nouns was found at 160 ms after word onset (N150). Mass nouns elicited greater left-lateralization over fronta...
Article
With the present investigation, which comprised two ERP experiments, we aimed to compare the earliest linguistic waves, namely the N150 and the N350, evoked by single words during three explicit tasks, Phonological, Semantic and Orthographic. With respect to past studies using different samples of stimuli for different tasks, in the present researc...
Article
Most of literature on language has shown how different word-classes activate distinct neural networks within linguistic cortical areas. The present investigation aimed to demonstrate that, by means of slow evoked potentials and using the same set of words in different tasks, it is possible to activate cortical networks that are spatially and tempor...
Article
The Simon effect has been previously shown to be asymmetric at both the behavioral and electrophysiological levels. The present investigation was aimed to clarify whether, during a Simon task, hemispheric asymmetry is also observed in the early phases of stimulus processing. In a group of healthy subjects performing the Simon task, we analyzed scal...
Article
The present event-related potential study aimed at finding neurophysiological correlates of inadequate reading performances in developmental dyslexia. By using the same set of words in different linguistic tasks, we found variations of cortical asymmetry between dyslexic individuals and controls starting with the N420, a component supposed to index...
Article
The phonological deficit hypothesis of dyslexia has been investigated in the present research by analysing language-related lateralization of the EEG theta band in a sample of dyslexic children. To this aim, a paradigm based on word-pair visual presentation was used in which the same words were processed in Semantic and Phonological tasks. Theta ba...

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Project (1)
Project
To measure cortical reorganization after short working memory training with behavioral and electrophysiological indices in physiological (i.e., healthy) elderly and Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) patients.