Marie Vandekerckhove

Marie Vandekerckhove
Vrije Universiteit Brussel | VUB · Biological Psychology

Professor

About

97
Publications
48,727
Reads
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3,182
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Introduction
Marie Vandekerckhove works at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and the University of Ghent (UGhent). Marie does research on emotion, bottom up experiential versus top down cognitive emotion regulation, existential meaning and wellbeing sleep, the brain. In summary her research involves: affective Sciences, neuroplasticity and existential Wellbeing.

Publications

Publications (97)
Article
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The current study investigated experiential emotion regulation. Rooted in an experien-tial- and client-centered psychotherapeutic approach, experiential emotion regulation involves an active, non-intervening, accepting, open and welcoming approach towards the bodily felt affec-tive experience in a welcoming, compassionate way, expressed in ‘experie...
Article
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Emotional stress throughout the day is known to affect objective sleep physiology and subjective sleep quality. In the interplay between emotions and sleep, emotion regulation plays a critical role in the recovery from stressful, emotional events and subsequent sleep. While the effects of top-down emotion regulation strategies such as cognitive rea...
Article
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Feeling threatened by terrorism can be associated with mental health problems and behavioural changes. However, few studies look at the association in the long-term. Using a survey, the population in Brussels, Belgium was studied using a representative database delivered by the national post service. The Patient Health Questionnaire-4 (PHQ-4) asses...
Article
Little is known about the association between terrorism and suicide. This study investigates suicide numbers in Flanders, Belgium before and after the Paris-attacks (13/11/2015) and Brussels-attacks (22/03/2016). Population mortality data for suicide were gathered from the Agency for healthcare. Suicides in Flanders, Belgium, were higher after both...
Cover Page
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COVID-19 does not only influence our moods, but also our existential well-being and the way in which we experience our lives and give meaning to our existence. The Vrije Universiteit Brussel, in partnership with Ghent University, aims to map the effects of the coronavirus on existential well-being in Belgium. The researchers want to know how citize...
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Until now, there is little research on the experiences of indirectly exposed minors after terrorist attacks. This study sheds light on the emotions and questions of such indirectly exposed minors. A qualitative content analysis of secondary data gained from Awel, a youth-helpline, was performed until saturation. Data contained emotions and question...
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When we feel sad or depressed, our face invariably “drops”. Conversely, when we try to cheer someone up, we might tell them “keep your smile up”, so presupposing that modifying the configuration of their facial muscles will enhance their mood. A crucial assumption that underpins this hypothesis is that mental states are shaped by information origin...
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As Louis Sander understood, human infants are evolutionarily endowed with emotional minds that allow them to experience themselves as affectively vibrant creatures, who seek to be recognized as important players in the world. If so recognized, they experience themselves as positive individuals; if merely neglected as predetermined beings whose affe...
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Background: The wave of terrorist attacks over the past years in Europe and other regions may cause problems such as anxiety and depressive symptoms. Some studies suggest that perceived threat might also trigger physical health problems. Objective: To investigate the association between feeling threatened and subjective health during the week follo...
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In recent years, research has witnessed an increasing interest in the bidirectional relationship between emotion and sleep. Sleep seems important for restoring daily functioning, whereas deprivation of sleep makes us more emotionally aroused and sensitive to stressful stimuli and events. Sleep appears to be essential to our ability to cope with emo...
Article
According to the facial feedback hypothesis, people’s affective responses can be influenced by their own facial expression (e.g., smiling, pouting), even when their expression did not result from their emotional experiences. For example, Strack, Martin, and Stepper (1988) instructed participants to rate the funniness of cartoons using a pen that th...
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Objective: Despite a long history of interest in personality as well as in the mechanisms that regulate sleep, the relationship between personality and sleep is not yet well understood. The purpose of this study was to explore how personality affects sleep. Design: The present cross-sectional study, based on a sample of 1291 participants (M Age...
Article
Neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that the medial prefrontal cortex is involved in attributions on enduring and abstract trait characteristics of persons, but not in causal attributions of temporary here-and-now events. Moreover, the neural representation of trait information is thought to be located in the ventral part of the medial prefronta...
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Als reactie op de beperkingen van het categoriale Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM)-systeem (American Psychiatric Association [APA], 2013) voor de classificatie en diagnostiek van psychische stoornissen (Frances, 2013) heeft het National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), een gerenommeerd Amerikaans onderzoeksinstituut dat fondsen verstrekt t...
Article
Does social reasoning rely on different processes than other forms of reasoning do? Direct and meta-analytical comparisons of social and nonsocial reasoning have consistently reported stronger engagement of the mentalizing network (encompassing the medial prefrontal cortex, precuneus, and temporoparietal junction) in social reasoning, but other stu...
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Associative learning denotes a specific kind of learning process, in which a change in the behavior of an organism results from adaptation to a particular relation between events occurring in an environment. Current insights in the neurobiological mechanisms subserving associative learning are primarily based on experimental and clinical research w...
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The aim of this study was to evaluate individual differences in the subjective flexibility of the circadian system in a community sample, with respect to age, gender, chronotype, and sleepiness perceptions. An online questionnaire containing the Circadian Type Inventory, the Composite Scale of Morningness, the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and the...
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This neuroimaging study compares brain activation during causal attribution to three different attribution loci (i.e. self, another person and situation) across a typical population without (N = 20) or with subclinical Autism Spectrum symptoms (N = 18) and a clinical population with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD; N = 11). While they underwent fMRI,...
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A recent meta-analysis explored the role of the cerebellum in social cognition and documented that this part of the brain is critically implicated in social cognition, especially in more abstract and complex forms of mentalizing. The authors found an overlap with clusters involved in sensorimotor (during mirror and self-judgment tasks) as well as i...
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Patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) can exhibit a reduction of spontaneous facial expression, designated as "facial masking," a symptom in which facial muscles become rigid. To improve clinical assessment of facial expressivity of PD, this work attempts to quantify the dynamic facial expressivity (facial activity) of PD by automatically recogniz...
Article
Research indicates a distinction between the processing of script content (which events, behaviors, scenes… are part of it) and script chronology (what is their usual order of occurrence). Using sequences of two line drawings depicting everyday social script events, we examined the event related potential (ERP) correlates of script chronology viola...
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A program supporting the initiation of insulin therapy in primary care was introduced in Belgium, as part of a larger quality improvement project on diabetes care. This paper reports on a study exploring factors influencing the engagement of general practitioners (GPs) in insulin therapy initiation (research question 1) and exploring factors releva...
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Empathy refers to our ability to recognize and share emotions by another human being. Impairment may underlie many of the emotional deficits commonly associated with a range of neuropsychiatric and neurological conditions. The prefrontal cortex (PFC) has long been implicated in these processes, but the specific contribution of subregions of the PFC...
Article
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This study compares brain activation during causal attribution to three different loci, the self, another person and the situation; and further explores correlations with clinical scales (i.e. depression, anxiety and autism) in a typical population. While they underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging, 20 participants read short sentences abo...
Article
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Polysomnography (PSG) is considered the gold standard to assess sleep accurately, but it can be expensive, time-consuming, and uncomfortable, specifically in long-term sleep studies. Actigraphy, on the other hand, is both cheap and user-friendly, but depending on the application lacks detail and accuracy. Our aim was to evaluate cardiorespiratory a...
Article
Based on an interdisciplinary perspective, we discuss how primary-process, anoetic forms of consciousness emerge into higher forms of awareness such as knowledge-based episodic knowing and self-aware forms of higher-order consciousness like autonoetic awareness. Anoetic consciousness is defined as the rudimentary state of affective, homeostatic, an...
Chapter
Associative learning denotes a specific kind of learning process, in which a change in the behavior of an organism results from adaptation to a particular relation between events occurring in an environment. Current insights in the neurobiological mechanisms subserving associative learning are primarily based on experimental and clinical research w...
Article
The aim of this study was to evaluate individual differences in the subjective flexibility of the circadian system in a community sample, with respect to age, gender, chronotype, and sleepiness perceptions. An online questionnaire containing the Circadian Type Inventory, the Composite Scale of Morningness, the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and the...
Article
Behavioral studies indicate that theory of mind and counterfactual reasoning are strongly related cognitive processes. In a neuroimaging study, we explored the common and distinct regions underlying these inference processes. We directly compared false belief reasoning (inferring an agent's false belief about an object's location or content) and co...
Article
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Misperception of Sleep Onset Latency, often found in Primary Insomnia, has been cited to be influenced by hyperarousal, reflected in EEG- and ECG- related indices. The aim of this retrospective study was to examine the association between Central Nervous System (i.e. EEG) -and Autonomic Nervous System activity in the Sleep Onset Period and the firs...
Article
This meta-analysis explores the role of the cerebellum in social cognition. Recent meta-analyses of neuroimaging studies since 2008 demonstrate that the cerebellum is only marginally involved in social cognition and emotionality, with a few meta-analyses pointing to an involvement of at most 54% of the individual studies. In this study, novel meta-...
Article
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Recent social neuroscientific evidence indicates that implicit and explicit inferences on the mind of another person (i.e., intentions, attributions or traits), are subserved by a shared mentalizing network. Under both implicit and explicit instructions, ERP studies reveal that early inferences occur at about the same time, and fMRI studies demonst...
Article
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A previous functional MRI adaptation study on trait inference indicated that a trait code is located in the ventral medial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), but could not rule out that this adaptation effect is due to the trait’s underlying valence. To address this issue, we presented sentences describing positive and negative valences of either a human t...
Article
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This study implements an algorithm for the autonomous control of spinal alignment during sleep by the active adjustment of mechanical bed characteristics according to the adopted sleep posture. Bed systems were used that allow active control of the mechanical stiffness in eight comfort zones by means of separately adjustable actuators. Mattress ind...
Article
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Neuroimaging studies on trait inference about the self and others have found a network of brain areas, the critical part of which appears to be medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). We investigated whether the mPFC plays an essential role in the neural representation of a trait code. To localize the trait code, we used functional magnetic resonance imag...
Article
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Recent studies suggest that a brain network mainly associated with episodic memory has a more general function in imagining oneself in another time, place or perspective (e.g. episodic future thought, theory of mind, default mode). If this is true, counterfactual thinking (e.g. 'If I had left the office earlier, I wouldn't have missed my train.') s...
Article
Nightly interventions, prevalent to on-call situations, can have negative consequences for those involved. We investigated if intervention-free-on-call-nights would also mean disturbance-free-sleep for people on-call. 16 healthy sleepers spent three nights in the laboratory: after a habituation night, reference and on-call night were counterbalance...
Article
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Reports an error in "Experiential Versus Analytical Emotion Regulation and Sleep: Breaking the Link Between Negative Events and Sleep Disturbance" by Marie Vandekerckhove, Jenny Kestemont, Rolf Weiss, Chris Schotte, Vasilis Exadaktylos, Bart Haex, Johan Verbraecken and James J. Gross (Emotion, Advanced Online Publication, Jul 9, 2012, np). In the a...
Article
Past fMRI research has demonstrated that to understand other people's behavior shown visually, the mirror network is strongly involved. However, the mentalizing network is also recruited when a visually presented action is unusual and/or when perceivers think explicitly about the intention. To further explore the conditions that trigger mentalizing...
Article
Fractional anisotropy (FA) is a measure for the degree of microstructural organization. Several studies have used FA values to assess microstructural organization of brain tumors and peritumoral edema. The purpose of our study was to validate FA and apparent diffusion constant (ADC) values in the diagnosis of meningiomas versus high-grade glial tum...
Article
This study aims at evaluating spinal alignment during sleep by combining personalized human models with mattress indentation measurements. A generic surface model has been developed that can be personalized based on anthropometric parameters derived from silhouette extraction. Shape assessment of the personalized surface models, performed by compar...
Article
Full-text available
Despite a long history of interest in emotion regulation as well as in the mechanisms that regulate sleep, the relationship between emotion regulation and sleep is not yet well understood. The present study investigated whether "an experiential approach"-defined by coping through affectively acknowledging, understanding, and expressing actual emoti...
Article
Full-text available
It has been suggested that the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) is involved in inferring immediate goals and intentions from behaviors, whereas the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) integrates social information, such as traits, at a more abstract level. To explore the differential role of the TPJ and mPFC, participants read several verbal description...
Article
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This functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) research explores how observers make causal beliefs about an event in terms of the person or situation. Thirty-four participants read various short descriptions of social events that implied either the person or the situation as the cause. Half of them were explicitly instructed to judge whether the...
Article
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The aim of this cross-sectional study was to investigate the influence of media use in the hour before bedtime on sleep/wake patterns and daytime functioning among adolescents and to examine the moderating role of parental control. A total of 1926 Belgian students, 55% girls and 45% boys, with a mean age of 16.9 ± 1.5 years, completed a modified ve...
Article
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This study explores the fMRI correlates of observers making trait inferences about other people under conflicting social cues. Participants were presented with several behavioral descriptions involving an agent that implied a particular trait. The last behavior was either consistent or inconsistent with the previously implied trait. This was done u...
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Self-management support is seen as a cornerstone of good diabetes care and many countries are currently engaged in initiatives to integrate self-management support in primary care. Concerning the organisation of these programs, evidence is growing that engagement of health care professionals, in particular of GPs, is critical for successful applica...
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Although daytime emotional stressful events are often presumed to cause sleep disturbances, the few studies of stressful life events on sleep physiology have resulted in various and contradictory findings. As research has focused in particular on stress in itself, the present study is the first to investigate the effect using polysomnography (PSG)....
Article
Past research on spontaneous trait inferences using event related potentials (ERPs) has consistently reported increased late positive potential (LPP) amplitudes following social expectancy violations, but no N400 modulation. In the present study, participants read scenarios describing behaviors of unknown actors. They entailed descriptions of sever...
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This essay provides an overview of evolutionary levels of consciousness, with a focus on a continuum of consciousness: from primarily affective to more advanced cognitive forms of neural processing-from anoetic (without knowledge) consciousness based on affective feelings, elaborated by brain networks that are subcortical- and can function without...
Article
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This fMRI study analyzes inferences on other persons' traits, whereby half of the participants were given spontaneous ("read") instructions while the other half were given intentional ("infer the person's trait") instructions. Several sentences described the behavior of a target person from which a strong trait could be inferred (trait diagnostic)...