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Biological Psychology

Verena Keil, Andero Uusberg, Jens Blechert, Brunna Tuschen-Caffier, Julian Schmitz
OBJECTIVE: The current study examined neural and behavioral responses to angry, happy and neutral faces in childhood social anxiety disorder (SAD). METHOD: Behavioral (reaction time and accuracy) and electrocortical measures (P100, N170, EPN, LPP) were assessed during a facial emotion identification task in children (age 10-13) with SAD (n = 32), clinical controls with mixed anxiety disorders (n = 30), and healthy controls (n = 33). RESULTS: Overall, there were no group differences in behavioral or neural responses to emotional faces...
February 13, 2018: Biological Psychology
Megan L Sawatsky, Samantha J Dawson, Martin L Lalumière
Women's genital responses are sensitive to the presence and intensity of sexual cues, yet some stimulus features (e.g., male vs. female actors, consensual vs. non-consensual interactions) have little influence on the magnitude of response-a phenomenon called low cue-specificity. Genital responses are typically assessed using vaginal photoplethysmography, a measure of vaginal vasocongestion, itself a precursor to lubrication. One explanation for low cue-specificity is the preparation hypothesis: Women genitally respond to almost all sexual cues because lubrication functions to protect genital organs from potential injury should vaginal penetration occur...
February 12, 2018: Biological Psychology
Helen G Hanstock, Jason P Edwards, Ross Roberts, Neil P Walsh
Tear secretory immunoglobulin-A (SIgA) is a putative biomarker of common-cold risk with potential utility in non-invasive diagnostics. As SIgA secretion at the ocular surface is under strong autonomic control, we investigated the relationship between HR reactivity and tear SIgA responses to novel experiential stress. Thirty-two healthy participants undertook a 60-second zip-line ride to evoke acute stress and a seated-rest control trial in a randomised-crossover design. We recorded heart rate (HR) continuously and collected unstimulated tear samples 5-min-pre-, 2-min-post- and 20-min-post-stress/control...
February 7, 2018: Biological Psychology
Jiang Qiu, Yunman Xia, Li He, Qunlin Chen, Na Sang, Wei Liu, Hong Li
How déjà vu works has long been a mystery, partially because of its characteristics of unpredictable occurrences and quick disappearances, which make it difficult to be explored. Previous studies have described the anatomical structures underlying déjà vu in healthy subjects; however, the functional mechanism of déjà vu remains unclear. Therefore, this study investigated the brain structural and functional components underlying déjà vu by combining voxel-based morphometry analysis (VBM) with resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC)...
February 6, 2018: Biological Psychology
Lidia B Shestopalova, Ekaterina A Petropavlovskaia, Varvara V Semenova, Nikolai I Nikitin
Human subjects demonstrate a perceptual priority for rising level sounds compared with falling level sounds. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether or not the perceptual preference for rising intensity can be found in the preattentive processing indexed by mismatch negativity (MMN). Reversed oddball stimulation was used to produce MMNs and to test the behavioral discrimination of rising, falling and constant level sounds. Three types of stimuli served as standards or deviants in different blocks: constant level sounds and two kinds of rising/falling sounds with gradual or stepwise change of intensity...
February 5, 2018: Biological Psychology
Emily M Paolucci, Dessi Loukov, Dawn M E Bowdish, Jennifer J Heisz
BACKGROUND: Exercise may help to mitigate symptoms of depression by reducing inflammation; however, little is known about the influence of exercise intensity on depressed mood. METHODS: In the present study, sixty-one university students were assigned to six weeks of high-intensity interval training (HIT), moderate continuous training (MCT), or no exercise (CON) during their academic term. We measured changes in depression, anxiety and perceived stress along with pro-inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β), and C-reactive protein (CRP)...
February 3, 2018: Biological Psychology
Robert D Melara, Lesia M Ruglass, Eric A Fertuck, Denise A Hien
The current study investigated links between trauma exposure, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms, and inhibitory control assessed using a modified version of the visual flanker task. The study had three aims: (1) specifically confirm general non-affective deficits in sustained attention in PTSD; (2) probe the influence of threatening and trauma-related stimuli on inhibitory control; and (3) explore neural correlates connecting PTSD, facets of dissociation, and inhibitory control. Participants with PTSD (n=16), trauma-exposed individuals without PTSD (TE; n=14), and healthy controls (n=15) discriminated line orientations while ignoring temporally flanking lines and images depicting threatening or non-threatening scenes or faces...
January 31, 2018: Biological Psychology
Kathrin Sommer, Salvatore Vita, Vilfredo De Pascalis
We investigated whether the late posterior negativity (LPN) is a component linked to stimulus retrieval or rather to complex, higher-order stimulus evaluation processes or response preparation processes. Participants performed three separate tasks across separate sessions: an encoding task, a memory recognition task, and a visual discrimination task. In the visual discrimination task, the difficulty of stimulus evaluation was manipulated via stimuli varying in complexity (easy vs. moderately difficult) and duration of stimulus presentation (short vs...
January 29, 2018: Biological Psychology
Aleksandra M Herman, Hugo D Critchley, Theodora Duka
Impulsivity received considerable attention in the context of drug misuse and certain neuropsychiatric conditions. Because of its great health and well-being importance, it is crucial to understand factors which modulate impulsive behaviour. As a growing body of literature indicates the role of emotional and physiological states in guiding our actions and decisions, we argue that current affective state and physiological arousal exert a significant influence on behavioural impulsivity. As 'impulsivity' is a heterogeneous concept, in this paper, we review key theories of the topic and summarise information about distinct impulsivity subtypes and their methods of assessment, pointing out to the differences between the various components of the construct...
January 29, 2018: Biological Psychology
Zhiyi Chen, Yiqun Guo, Tingyong Feng
Decision-making about rewards, which requires us to choose between different time points, generally refers to intertemporal choice. Converging evidence suggests that some of the brain networks recruited in the delay discounting task have been well characterized for intertemporal choice. However, little is known about how the connectivity patterns of these large-scale brain networks are associated with delay discounting. Here, we use a resting-state functional connectivity MRI (rs-fcMRI) and a graph theoretical analysis to address this question...
January 27, 2018: Biological Psychology
Jennifer Murphy, Edward Millgate, Hayley Geary, Eri Ichijo, Michel-Pierre Coll, Rebecca Brewer, Caroline Catmur, Geoffrey Bird
Evidence suggests that intelligence is positively associated with performance on the heartbeat counting task (HCT). The HCT is often employed as measure of interoception - the ability to perceive the internal state of one's body - however it's use remains controversial as performance on the HCT is strongly influenced by knowledge of resting heart rate. This raises the possibility that heart rate knowledge may mediate the previously-observed association between intelligence and HCT performance. Study One demonstrates an association between intelligence and HCT performance (N = 94), and Study Two demonstrates that this relationship is mediated by knowledge of the average resting heart rate (N = 134)...
January 26, 2018: Biological Psychology
Emma P Shaw, Jeremy C Rietschel, Brad D Hendershot, Alison L Pruziner, Matthew W Miller, Bradley D Hatfield, Rodolphe J Gentili
Previous work focused on assessing cognitive workload has suggested EEG spectral content and component amplitudes of the event-related potential (ERP) waveform may index mental effort and attentional reserve, respectively. Although few studies have assessed attentional reserve and mental effort during upper-extremity performance, none employed a combined approach to measure cognitive workload during locomotion. Therefore, by systematically considering ERPs, spectral content, and importantly, their combinations this study aimed to examine whether concurrent changes in spectral content and ERPs could collectively index cognitive workload during locomotion...
January 26, 2018: Biological Psychology
Andreas Widmann, Erich Schröger, Nicole Wetzel
Novel sounds in the auditory oddball paradigm elicit a biphasic dilation of the pupil (PDR) and P3a as well as novelty P3 event-related potentials (ERPs). The biphasic PDR has been hypothesized to reflect the relaxation of the iris sphincter muscle due to parasympathetic inhibition and the constriction of the iris dilator muscle due to sympathetic activation. We measured the PDR and the P3 to neutral and to emotionally arousing negative novels in dark and moderate lighting conditions. By means of principal component analysis (PCA) of the PDR data we extracted two components: the early one was absent in darkness and, thus, presumably reflects parasympathetic inhibition, whereas the late component occurred in darkness and light and presumably reflects sympathetic activation...
January 25, 2018: Biological Psychology
Segolene Lithfous, Bruno Rossion
This study used fast periodic visual stimulation (FPVS) and electroencephalography (EEG) to investigate whether the reduction of face adaptation effects over time is due to the introduction of a novel stimulus. In adapting sequences, one individual face was presented at a rate of 6 Hz over 60 sec. In testing sequences this adapted face was alternated with a novel individual face at the same rate for 20 sec, so that face identity was repeated at a frequency of 3 Hz (i.e. 6 Hz/2). Testing sequences started immediately or 9-15 sec after adapting sequences...
January 23, 2018: Biological Psychology
Gerardo Santaniello, Manuel Sebastián, Luis Carretié, Uxia Fernández-Folgueiras, José Antonio Hinojosa
In the current study, we investigated the effects of short-term visual deprivation (2 hours) on a haptic recognition memory task with familiar objects. Behavioral data, as well as event-related potentials (ERPs) and induced event-related oscillations (EROs) were analyzed. At the behavioral level, deprived participants showed speeded reaction times to new stimuli. Analyses of ERPs indicated that starting from 1000 ms the recognition of old objects elicited enhanced positive amplitudes only for the visually deprived group...
January 19, 2018: Biological Psychology
Adrià Vilà-Balló, Juha Salmi, Anna Soveri, Antoni Rodríguez-Fornells, Minna Lehtonen, Matti Laine
Although working memory (WM) is amongst the most studied neurocognitive functions, temporal patterns of its component processes are not fully understood. We examined the neural underpinnings of active maintenance and interference management in the n-back task by manipulating load (1-back vs 3-back) and including so-called lure stimuli. ERPs of 27 young adults revealed that the 1-back condition enabling active maintenance showed a positive slow wave (PSW) prior to the next stimulus (-600-0 ms) and augmented P2 (190-290 ms) and P3b (330-430 ms) responses after the stimulus appeared, albeit the latter effects were driven by the initial PSW...
January 12, 2018: Biological Psychology
Christine L Lackner, Diane L Santesso, Jane Dywan, Deborah O'Leary, Terrance J Wade, Sidney J Segalowitz
Trauma and stress, like that which occurs as a result of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), can change brain structure and function, especially in medial prefrontal and hippocampal areas, and can impact self-regulatory skill. The error-related negativity (ERN) is a medial frontal negative event-related potential (ERP) component that is more negative when a participant makes an erroneous versus correct response. We investigated the association of ACEs to adolescents' ERN and self-regulation. Forty-three 12-15 year olds performed a flanker task while EEG data were recorded...
January 5, 2018: Biological Psychology
Amy Badura-Brack, Timothy J McDermott, Elizabeth Heinrichs-Graham, Tara J Ryan, Maya M Khanna, Daniel S Pine, Yair Bar-Haim, Tony W Wilson
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a major psychiatric disorder that is prevalent in combat veterans. Previous neuroimaging studies have found elevated amygdala activity in PTSD in response to threatening stimuli, but previous work has lacked the temporal specificity to study fast bottom-up fear responses involving the amygdala. Forty-four combat veterans, 28 with PTSD and 16 without, completed psychological testing and then a face-processing task during magnetoencephalography (MEG). The resulting MEG data were pre-processed, transformed into the time-frequency domain, and then imaged using a beamforming approach...
January 5, 2018: Biological Psychology
Matthias J Wieser, Anna Hambach, Mathias Weymar
Visual search paradigms have provided evidence for the enhanced capture of attention by threatening faces. Especially in social anxiety, hypervigilance for threatening faces has been found repeatedly across behavioral paradigms, whose reliability however have been questioned recently. In this EEG study, we sought to determine whether the detection of threat (angry faces) is specifically enhanced in individuals with high (HSA) compared to low social anxiety (LSA). In a visual search paradigm, the N2pc component of the event-related brain potential was measured as an electrophysiological indicator of attentional selection...
January 4, 2018: Biological Psychology
Barbara D Grünewald, Ellen Greimel, Monika Trinkl, Jürgen Bartling, Nicola Großheinrich, Gerd Schulte-Körne
More right-sided frontal brain resting activity has been postulated to be a correlate of major depression in adults. In children and adolescents, more right-sided activity (as indicated by more left-sided alpha activity) seems to be associated with psychosocial risk factors. However, an association of frontal asymmetry and manifest unipolar depression has not been shown in adolescents so far. We analyzed frontal asymmetry in 20 adolescents (12-17 years) with unipolar depression (12 with first episode, 8 with recurrent depression) and 31 healthy age-matched controls...
January 3, 2018: Biological Psychology
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