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Sample records for affect neural activity

  1. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    PubMed

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation.

  2. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    PubMed

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation. PMID:26990572

  3. Neural Activation Underlying Cognitive Control in the Context of Neutral and Affectively Charged Pictures in Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lamm, Connie; White, Lauren K.; McDermott, Jennifer Martin; Fox, Nathan A.

    2012-01-01

    The neural correlates of cognitive control for typically developing 9-year-old children were examined using dense-array ERPs and estimates of cortical activation (LORETA) during a go/no-go task with two conditions: a neutral picture condition and an affectively charged picture condition. Activation was estimated for the entire cortex after which…

  4. Early neural activation during facial affect processing in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder☆

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Rachel C.; Pang, Elizabeth W.; Cassel, Daniel; Brian, Jessica A.; Smith, Mary Lou; Taylor, Margot J.

    2014-01-01

    Impaired social interaction is one of the hallmarks of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Emotional faces are arguably the most critical visual social stimuli and the ability to perceive, recognize, and interpret emotions is central to social interaction and communication, and subsequently healthy social development. However, our understanding of the neural and cognitive mechanisms underlying emotional face processing in adolescents with ASD is limited. We recruited 48 adolescents, 24 with high functioning ASD and 24 typically developing controls. Participants completed an implicit emotional face processing task in the MEG. We examined spatiotemporal differences in neural activation between the groups during implicit angry and happy face processing. While there were no differences in response latencies between groups across emotions, adolescents with ASD had lower accuracy on the implicit emotional face processing task when the trials included angry faces. MEG data showed atypical neural activity in adolescents with ASD during angry and happy face processing, which included atypical activity in the insula, anterior and posterior cingulate and temporal and orbitofrontal regions. Our findings demonstrate differences in neural activity during happy and angry face processing between adolescents with and without ASD. These differences in activation in social cognitive regions may index the difficulties in face processing and in comprehension of social reward and punishment in the ASD group. Thus, our results suggest that atypical neural activation contributes to impaired affect processing, and thus social cognition, in adolescents with ASD. PMID:25610782

  5. Early neural activation during facial affect processing in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Leung, Rachel C; Pang, Elizabeth W; Cassel, Daniel; Brian, Jessica A; Smith, Mary Lou; Taylor, Margot J

    2015-01-01

    Impaired social interaction is one of the hallmarks of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Emotional faces are arguably the most critical visual social stimuli and the ability to perceive, recognize, and interpret emotions is central to social interaction and communication, and subsequently healthy social development. However, our understanding of the neural and cognitive mechanisms underlying emotional face processing in adolescents with ASD is limited. We recruited 48 adolescents, 24 with high functioning ASD and 24 typically developing controls. Participants completed an implicit emotional face processing task in the MEG. We examined spatiotemporal differences in neural activation between the groups during implicit angry and happy face processing. While there were no differences in response latencies between groups across emotions, adolescents with ASD had lower accuracy on the implicit emotional face processing task when the trials included angry faces. MEG data showed atypical neural activity in adolescents with ASD during angry and happy face processing, which included atypical activity in the insula, anterior and posterior cingulate and temporal and orbitofrontal regions. Our findings demonstrate differences in neural activity during happy and angry face processing between adolescents with and without ASD. These differences in activation in social cognitive regions may index the difficulties in face processing and in comprehension of social reward and punishment in the ASD group. Thus, our results suggest that atypical neural activation contributes to impaired affect processing, and thus social cognition, in adolescents with ASD. PMID:25610782

  6. Early neural activation during facial affect processing in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Leung, Rachel C; Pang, Elizabeth W; Cassel, Daniel; Brian, Jessica A; Smith, Mary Lou; Taylor, Margot J

    2015-01-01

    Impaired social interaction is one of the hallmarks of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Emotional faces are arguably the most critical visual social stimuli and the ability to perceive, recognize, and interpret emotions is central to social interaction and communication, and subsequently healthy social development. However, our understanding of the neural and cognitive mechanisms underlying emotional face processing in adolescents with ASD is limited. We recruited 48 adolescents, 24 with high functioning ASD and 24 typically developing controls. Participants completed an implicit emotional face processing task in the MEG. We examined spatiotemporal differences in neural activation between the groups during implicit angry and happy face processing. While there were no differences in response latencies between groups across emotions, adolescents with ASD had lower accuracy on the implicit emotional face processing task when the trials included angry faces. MEG data showed atypical neural activity in adolescents with ASD during angry and happy face processing, which included atypical activity in the insula, anterior and posterior cingulate and temporal and orbitofrontal regions. Our findings demonstrate differences in neural activity during happy and angry face processing between adolescents with and without ASD. These differences in activation in social cognitive regions may index the difficulties in face processing and in comprehension of social reward and punishment in the ASD group. Thus, our results suggest that atypical neural activation contributes to impaired affect processing, and thus social cognition, in adolescents with ASD.

  7. Cognitive-affective neural plasticity following active-controlled mindfulness intervention.

    PubMed

    Allen, Micah; Dietz, Martin; Blair, Karina S; van Beek, Martijn; Rees, Geraint; Vestergaard-Poulsen, Peter; Lutz, Antoine; Roepstorff, Andreas

    2012-10-31

    Mindfulness meditation is a set of attention-based, regulatory, and self-inquiry training regimes. Although the impact of mindfulness training (MT) on self-regulation is well established, the neural mechanisms supporting such plasticity are poorly understood. MT is thought to act through interoceptive salience and attentional control mechanisms, but until now conflicting evidence from behavioral and neural measures renders difficult distinguishing their respective roles. To resolve this question we conducted a fully randomized 6 week longitudinal trial of MT, explicitly controlling for cognitive and treatment effects with an active-control group. We measured behavioral metacognition and whole-brain blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) signals using functional MRI during an affective Stroop task before and after intervention in healthy human subjects. Although both groups improved significantly on a response-inhibition task, only the MT group showed reduced affective Stroop conflict. Moreover, the MT group displayed greater dorsolateral prefrontal cortex responses during executive processing, consistent with increased recruitment of top-down mechanisms to resolve conflict. In contrast, we did not observe overall group-by-time interactions on negative affect-related reaction times or BOLD responses. However, only participants with the greatest amount of MT practice showed improvements in response inhibition and increased recruitment of dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, medial prefrontal cortex, and right anterior insula during negative valence processing. Our findings highlight the importance of active control in MT research, indicate unique neural mechanisms for progressive stages of mindfulness training, and suggest that optimal application of MT may differ depending on context, contrary to a one-size-fits-all approach.

  8. Menstrual cycle phase does not affect sympathetic neural activity in women with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Stickford, Abigail SL; VanGundy, Tiffany B; Levine, Benjamin D; Fu, Qi

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Patients with the postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) are primarily premenopausal women, which may be attributed to female sex hormones. We tested the hypothesis that hormonal fluctuations of the menstrual cycle alter sympathetic neural activity and orthostatic tolerance in POTS women. Ten POTS women were studied during the early follicular (EF) and mid-luteal (ML) phases of the menstrual cycle. Haemodynamics and muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) were measured when supine, during 60 deg upright tilt for 45 min or until presyncope, and during the cold pressor test (CPT) and Valsalva manoeuvres. Blood pressure and total peripheral resistance were higher during rest and tilting in the ML than EF phase; however, heart rate, stroke volume and cardiac output were similar between phases. There were no mean ± SD differences in MSNA burst frequency (8 ± 8 EF phase vs. 10 ± 10 bursts min–1 ML phase at rest; 34 ± 15 EF phase vs. 36 ± 16 bursts min–1 ML phase at 5 min tilt), burst incidence or total activity, nor any differences in the cardiovagal and sympathetic baroreflex sensitivities between phases under any condition. The incidence of presyncope was also the same between phases. There were no differences in haemodynamic or sympathetic responses to CPT or Valsalva. These results suggest that the menstrual cycle does not affect sympathetic neural activity but modulates blood pressure and vasoconstriction in POTS women during tilting. Thus, factors other than sympathetic neural activity are probably responsible for the symptoms of orthostatic intolerance across the menstrual cycle in women with POTS. Key points Women with the postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) report fluctuations in orthostatic tolerance throughout the menstrual cycle. The mechanism(s) underlying blood pressure control across the menstrual cycle in women with POTS are unknown. The findings of the present study indicate that the menstrual

  9. Neural progenitor cell apoptosis and differentiation were affected by activated microglia in spinal cord slice culture.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xuqing; Chu, Tak-Ho; Su, Huanxing; Guo, Anchen; Wu, Wutian

    2014-03-01

    Neural progenitor cell (NPC) transplantation offers great potential to treat spinal cord injury (SCI). NPCs may replace lost neurons or oligodendrocytes and act as a source of neurotrophic factors to support survival of remaining cells. However, their efficiency was limited by poor survival after transplantation, and they tended more to differentiate into astrocytes, but not neurons and oligodendrocytes. This study investigated whether activated microglia is a factor that contributes to this phenomenon. Organotypic spinal cord slice (SCS) culture was used to mimic the local environment after SCI, and NPCs were co-cultured with them to share the culture medium. After specific depletion of microglia in the SCSs with clodronate loaded liposome, the apoptotic rate of NPCs decreased, more NPCs differentiated into neurons, and glial differentiation was impaired. This suggested that microglia may impair NPC survival, and neuronal differentiation, but improve astrocyte differentiation. In NPC transplantation strategy for SCI, microglia would be manipulated to improve the survival and neuronal differentiation of NPCs.

  10. Beyond affect: A role for genetic variation of the serotonin transporter in neural activation during a cognitive attention task

    PubMed Central

    Canli, Turhan; Omura, Kazufumi; Haas, Brian W.; Fallgatter, Andreas; Constable, R. Todd; Lesch, Klaus Peter

    2005-01-01

    Prior work has highlighted the role of genetic variation within the repetitive sequence in the transcriptional control region of the serotonin (5-HT) transporter gene (5-HTT, SLC6A4) in modulating amygdala and prefrontal activation to negative emotional stimuli. However, these studies have not explicitly tested the assumption that the control condition (neutral baseline) does not itself produce changes in activation as a function of 5-HTT genotype. Using a fixation baseline condition, we show that variation in 5-HTT genotype is associated with differential activation to negative, positive, and neutral stimuli in limbic, striatal, and cortical regions. We replicate earlier reports of increased amygdala activation to negative, relative to neutral, stimuli, but then show that these differences are driven by decreased activation to neutral stimuli, rather than increased activation to negative stimuli, in carriers of the 5-HTT short allele. Using high-resolution structural images and automated processes to test for brain volume and gray matter density, we further report significant differences, as a function of 5-HTT genotype, in frontal cortical regions, anterior cingulate, and cerebellum. These functional and structural differences suggest a much broader role for 5-HT transport efficiency in brain processes than previously thought. 5-HTT genotype affects neural systems controlling affective, cognitive, and motor processes. PMID:16093315

  11. Evaluation of the legal consequences of action affects neural activity and emotional experience during the resolution of moral dilemmas.

    PubMed

    Pletti, Carolina; Sarlo, Michela; Palomba, Daniela; Rumiati, Rino; Lotto, Lorella

    2015-03-01

    In any modern society killing is regarded as a severe violation of the legal codes that is subjected to penal judgment. Therefore, it is likely that people take legal consequences into account when deciding about the hypothetical killing of one person in classic moral dilemmas, with legal concerns contributing to decision-making. In particular, by differing for the degree of intentionality and emotional salience, Footbridge- and Trolley-type dilemmas might promote differential assignment of blame and punishment while implicating the same severity of harm. The present study was aimed at comparing the neural activity, subjective emotional reactions, and behavioral choices in two groups of participants who either took (Legal group) or did not take (No Legal group) legal consequences into account when deciding on Footbridge-type and Trolley-type moral dilemmas. Stimulus- and response-locked ERPs were measured to investigate the neural activity underlying two separate phases of the decision process. No difference in behavioral choices was found between groups. However, the No Legal group reported greater overall emotional impact, associated with lower preparation for action, suggesting greater conflict between alternative motor responses representing the different decision choices. In contrast, the Legal group showed an overall dampened affective experience during decision-making associated with greater overall action readiness and intention to act, reflecting lower conflict in responding. On these bases, we suggest that in moral dilemmas legal consequences of actions provide a sort of reference point on which people can rely to support a decision, independent of dilemma type.

  12. Self-control, negative affect and neural activity during effortful cognition in deprived smokers.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Stephen J; Sayette, Michael A; Fiez, Julie A

    2014-06-01

    The vast majority of attempts to quit smoking cigarettes are unsuccessful. Negative affect (NA) is one of the primary factors contributing to smoking relapse, in part because it interferes with psychological processes that are essential for self-regulation and coping. Converging evidence suggests that NA may be less of a problem for smokers with high relative to low dispositional self-control, but very little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this effect. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to address this issue by examining the associations between trait self-control, state levels of NA and patterns of brain activation in nicotine-deprived smokers (n = 117) during the performance of a verbal n-back paradigm (a task requiring cognitive processes that support self-regulation). While the activation of several brain regions linked to executive control correlated positively and negatively with state NA and trait self-control, respectively, an interaction between these factors was identified in only one region: the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We conclude that the functions supported by the vmPFC are an important source of variability in smokers' self-regulatory functioning and propose that the region may contribute to the use of implicit forms of self-control under demanding circumstances.

  13. Evaluation of the legal consequences of action affects neural activity and emotional experience during the resolution of moral dilemmas.

    PubMed

    Pletti, Carolina; Sarlo, Michela; Palomba, Daniela; Rumiati, Rino; Lotto, Lorella

    2015-03-01

    In any modern society killing is regarded as a severe violation of the legal codes that is subjected to penal judgment. Therefore, it is likely that people take legal consequences into account when deciding about the hypothetical killing of one person in classic moral dilemmas, with legal concerns contributing to decision-making. In particular, by differing for the degree of intentionality and emotional salience, Footbridge- and Trolley-type dilemmas might promote differential assignment of blame and punishment while implicating the same severity of harm. The present study was aimed at comparing the neural activity, subjective emotional reactions, and behavioral choices in two groups of participants who either took (Legal group) or did not take (No Legal group) legal consequences into account when deciding on Footbridge-type and Trolley-type moral dilemmas. Stimulus- and response-locked ERPs were measured to investigate the neural activity underlying two separate phases of the decision process. No difference in behavioral choices was found between groups. However, the No Legal group reported greater overall emotional impact, associated with lower preparation for action, suggesting greater conflict between alternative motor responses representing the different decision choices. In contrast, the Legal group showed an overall dampened affective experience during decision-making associated with greater overall action readiness and intention to act, reflecting lower conflict in responding. On these bases, we suggest that in moral dilemmas legal consequences of actions provide a sort of reference point on which people can rely to support a decision, independent of dilemma type. PMID:25638294

  14. Early social experience affects neural activity to affiliative facial gestures in newborn nonhuman primates

    PubMed Central

    Vanderwert, Ross E.; Simpson, Elizabeth A.; Paukner, Annika; Suomi, Stephen J.; Fox, Nathan A.; Ferrari, Pier F.

    2015-01-01

    A fundamental issue in cognitive neuroscience is how the brain encodes others’ actions and intentions. The discovery of an action-production-perception mechanism underpinning such a capacity advanced our knowledge of how these processes occur; however, no study has examined how the early postnatal environment may shape action-production-perception. Here we examined the effects of social experience on action-production-perception in 3-day-old rhesus macaques that were raised either with or without their biological mothers. We measured neonatal imitation skills and brain electrical activity responses while infants produced and observed facial gestures. We hypothesized that early social experiences may shape brain activity, as assessed via electroencephalogram suppression in the alpha band (5-7 Hz in infants, known as the mu rhythm) during action observation, and lead to more proficient imitation skills. Consistent with this hypothesis, infants reared by their mothers were more likely to imitate lipsmacking—a natural, affiliative gesture—and exhibited greater mu rhythm desynchronization while viewing lipsmacking gestures than nursery-reared infants. These effects were not found in response to tongue protrusion, a meaningless gesture, or a nonsocial control. These data suggest that socially enriched early experiences in the first days after birth increase brain sensitivity to socially relevant actions. PMID:26022835

  15. A neural link between affective understanding and interpersonal attraction

    PubMed Central

    Anders, Silke; de Jong, Roos; Beck, Christian; Haynes, John-Dylan; Ethofer, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Being able to comprehend another person’s intentions and emotions is essential for successful social interaction. However, it is currently unknown whether the human brain possesses a neural mechanism that attracts people to others whose mental states they can easily understand. Here we show that the degree to which a person feels attracted to another person can change while they observe the other’s affective behavior, and that these changes depend on the observer’s confidence in having correctly understood the other’s affective state. At the neural level, changes in interpersonal attraction were predicted by activity in the reward system of the observer’s brain. Importantly, these effects were specific to individual observer–target pairs and could not be explained by a target’s general attractiveness or expressivity. Furthermore, using multivoxel pattern analysis (MVPA), we found that neural activity in the reward system of the observer’s brain varied as a function of how well the target’s affective behavior matched the observer’s neural representation of the underlying affective state: The greater the match, the larger the brain’s intrinsic reward signal. Taken together, these findings provide evidence that reward-related neural activity during social encounters signals how well an individual’s “neural vocabulary” is suited to infer another person’s affective state, and that this intrinsic reward might be a source of changes in interpersonal attraction. PMID:27044071

  16. Dynamic artificial neural networks with affective systems.

    PubMed

    Schuman, Catherine D; Birdwell, J Douglas

    2013-01-01

    Artificial neural networks (ANNs) are processors that are trained to perform particular tasks. We couple a computational ANN with a simulated affective system in order to explore the interaction between the two. In particular, we design a simple affective system that adjusts the threshold values in the neurons of our ANN. The aim of this paper is to demonstrate that this simple affective system can control the firing rate of the ensemble of neurons in the ANN, as well as to explore the coupling between the affective system and the processes of long term potentiation (LTP) and long term depression (LTD), and the effect of the parameters of the affective system on its performance. We apply our networks with affective systems to a simple pole balancing example and briefly discuss the effect of affective systems on network performance.

  17. Housing conditions and sacrifice protocol affect neural activity and vocal behavior in a songbird species, the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Elie, Julie Estelle; Soula, Hédi Antoine; Trouvé, Colette; Mathevon, Nicolas; Vignal, Clémentine

    2015-12-01

    Individual cages represent a widely used housing condition in laboratories. This isolation represents an impoverished physical and social environment in gregarious animals. It prevents animals from socializing, even when auditory and visual contact is maintained. Zebra finches are colonial songbirds that are widely used as laboratory animals for the study of vocal communication from brain to behavior. In this study, we investigated the effect of single housing on the vocal behavior and the brain activity of male zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata): male birds housed in individual cages were compared to freely interacting male birds housed as a social group in a communal cage. We focused on the activity of septo-hypothalamic regions of the "social behavior network" (SBN), a set of limbic regions involved in several social behaviors in vertebrates. The activity of four structures of the SBN (BSTm, medial bed nucleus of the stria terminalis; POM, medial preoptic area; lateral septum; ventromedial hypothalamus) and one associated region (paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus) was assessed using immunoreactive nuclei density of the immediate early gene Zenk (egr-1). We further assessed the identity of active cell populations by labeling vasotocin (VT). Brain activity was related to behavioral activities of birds like physical and vocal interactions. We showed that individual housing modifies vocal exchanges between birds compared to communal housing. This is of particular importance in the zebra finch, a model species for the study of vocal communication. In addition, a protocol that daily removes one or two birds from the group affects differently male zebra finches depending of their housing conditions: while communally-housed males changed their vocal output, brains of individually housed males show increased Zenk labeling in non-VT cells of the BSTm and enhanced correlation of Zenk-revealed activity between the studied structures. These results show that

  18. Affective traits link to reliable neural markers of incentive anticipation

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Charlene C.; Samanez-Larkin, Gregory R.; Katovich, Kiefer; Knutson, Brian

    2013-01-01

    While theorists have speculated that different affective traits are linked to reliable brain activity during anticipation of gains and losses, few have directly tested this prediction. We examined these associations in a community sample of healthy human adults (n = 52) as they played a Monetary Incentive Delay Task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI). Factor analysis of personality measures revealed that subjects independently varied in trait Positive Arousal and Negative Arousal. In a subsample (n = 14) retested over 2.5 years later, left nucleus accumbens (NAcc) activity during anticipation of large gains (+$5.00) and right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses (−$5.00) showed significant test-retest reliability (intraclass correlations > 0.50, p’s < 0.01). In the full sample (n = 52), trait Positive Arousal correlated with individual differences in left NAcc activity during anticipation of large gains, while trait Negative Arousal correlated with individual differences in right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses. Associations of affective traits with neural activity were not attributable to the influence of other potential confounds (including sex, age, wealth, and motion). Together, these results demonstrate selective links between distinct affective traits and reliably-elicited activity in neural circuits associated with anticipation of gain versus loss. The findings thus reveal neural markers for affective dimensions of healthy personality, and potentially for related psychiatric symptoms. PMID:24001457

  19. Affective traits link to reliable neural markers of incentive anticipation.

    PubMed

    Wu, Charlene C; Samanez-Larkin, Gregory R; Katovich, Kiefer; Knutson, Brian

    2014-01-01

    While theorists have speculated that different affective traits are linked to reliable brain activity during anticipation of gains and losses, few have directly tested this prediction. We examined these associations in a community sample of healthy human adults (n=52) as they played a Monetary Incentive Delay task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI). Factor analysis of personality measures revealed that subjects independently varied in trait Positive Arousal and trait Negative Arousal. In a subsample (n=14) retested over 2.5years later, left nucleus accumbens (NAcc) activity during anticipation of large gains (+$5.00) and right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses (-$5.00) showed significant test-retest reliability (intraclass correlations>0.50, p's<0.01). In the full sample (n=52), trait Positive Arousal correlated with individual differences in left NAcc activity during anticipation of large gains, while trait Negative Arousal correlated with individual differences in right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses. Associations of affective traits with neural activity were not attributable to the influence of other potential confounds (including sex, age, wealth, and motion). Together, these results demonstrate selective links between distinct affective traits and reliably-elicited activity in neural circuits associated with anticipation of gain versus loss. The findings thus reveal neural markers for affective dimensions of healthy personality, and potentially for related psychiatric symptoms.

  20. Neural evidence that human emotions share core affective properties.

    PubMed

    Wilson-Mendenhall, Christine D; Barrett, Lisa Feldman; Barsalou, Lawrence W

    2013-06-01

    Research on the "emotional brain" remains centered around the idea that emotions like fear, happiness, and sadness result from specialized and distinct neural circuitry. Accumulating behavioral and physiological evidence suggests, instead, that emotions are grounded in core affect--a person's fluctuating level of pleasant or unpleasant arousal. A neuroimaging study revealed that participants' subjective ratings of valence (i.e., pleasure/displeasure) and of arousal evoked by various fear, happiness, and sadness experiences correlated with neural activity in specific brain regions (orbitofrontal cortex and amygdala, respectively). We observed these correlations across diverse instances within each emotion category, as well as across instances from all three categories. Consistent with a psychological construction approach to emotion, the results suggest that neural circuitry realizes more basic processes across discrete emotions. The implicated brain regions regulate the body to deal with the world, producing the affective changes at the core of emotions and many other psychological phenomena.

  1. Analysis of optical neural stimulation effects on neural networks affected by neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zverev, M.; Fanjul-Vélez, F.; Salas-García, I.; Ortega-Quijano, N.; Arce-Diego, J. L.

    2016-03-01

    The number of people in risk of developing a neurodegenerative disease increases as the life expectancy grows due to medical advances. Multiple techniques have been developed to improve patient's condition, from pharmacological to invasive electrodes approaches, but no definite cure has yet been discovered. In this work Optical Neural Stimulation (ONS) has been studied. ONS stimulates noninvasively the outer regions of the brain, mainly the neocortex. The relationship between the stimulation parameters and the therapeutic response is not totally clear. In order to find optimal ONS parameters to treat a particular neurodegenerative disease, mathematical modeling is necessary. Neural networks models have been employed to study the neural spiking activity change induced by ONS. Healthy and pathological neocortical networks have been considered to study the required stimulation to restore the normal activity. The network consisted of a group of interconnected neurons, which were assigned 2D spatial coordinates. The optical stimulation spatial profile was assumed to be Gaussian. The stimulation effects were modeled as synaptic current increases in the affected neurons, proportional to the stimulation fluence. Pathological networks were defined as the healthy ones with some neurons being inactivated, which presented no synaptic conductance. Neurons' electrical activity was also studied in the frequency domain, focusing specially on the changes of the spectral bands corresponding to brain waves. The complete model could be used to determine the optimal ONS parameters in order to achieve the specific neural spiking patterns or the required local neural activity increase to treat particular neurodegenerative pathologies.

  2. Ongoing neural development of affective theory of mind in adolescence

    PubMed Central

    Weigelt, Sarah; Döhnel, Katrin; Smolka, Michael N.; Kliegel, Matthias

    2014-01-01

    Affective Theory of Mind (ToM), an important aspect of ToM, involves the understanding of affective mental states. This ability is critical in the developmental phase of adolescence, which is often related with socio-emotional problems. Using a developmentally sensitive behavioral task in combination with functional magnetic resonance imaging, the present study investigated the neural development of affective ToM throughout adolescence. Eighteen adolescent (ages 12–14 years) and 18 young adult women (aged 19–25 years) were scanned while evaluating complex affective mental states depicted by actors in video clips. The ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) showed significantly stronger activation in adolescents in comparison to adults in the affective ToM condition. Current results indicate that the vmPFC might be involved in the development of affective ToM processing in adolescence. PMID:23716712

  3. Expressive suppression and neural responsiveness to nonverbal affective cues.

    PubMed

    Petrican, Raluca; Rosenbaum, R Shayna; Grady, Cheryl

    2015-10-01

    Optimal social functioning occasionally requires concealment of one's emotions in order to meet one's immediate goals and environmental demands. However, because emotions serve an important communicative function, their habitual suppression disrupts the flow of social exchanges and, thus, incurs significant interpersonal costs. Evidence is accruing that the disruption in social interactions, linked to habitual expressive suppression use, stems not only from intrapersonal, but also from interpersonal causes, since the suppressors' restricted affective displays reportedly inhibit their interlocutors' emotionally expressive behaviors. However, expressive suppression use is not known to lead to clinically significant social impairments. One explanation may be that over the lifespan, individuals who habitually suppress their emotions come to compensate for their interlocutors' restrained expressive behaviors by developing an increased sensitivity to nonverbal affective cues. To probe this issue, the present study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan healthy older women while they viewed silent videos of a male social target displaying nonverbal emotional behavior, together with a brief verbal description of the accompanying context, and then judged the target's affect. As predicted, perceivers who reported greater habitual use of expressive suppression showed increased neural processing of nonverbal affective cues. This effect appeared to be coordinated in a top-down manner via cognitive control. Greater neural processing of nonverbal cues among perceivers who habitually suppress their emotions was linked to increased ventral striatum activity, suggestive of increased reward value/personal relevance ascribed to emotionally expressive nonverbal behaviors. These findings thus provide neural evidence broadly consistent with the hypothesized link between habitual use of expressive suppression and compensatory development of increased responsiveness to

  4. Expressive suppression and neural responsiveness to nonverbal affective cues.

    PubMed

    Petrican, Raluca; Rosenbaum, R Shayna; Grady, Cheryl

    2015-10-01

    Optimal social functioning occasionally requires concealment of one's emotions in order to meet one's immediate goals and environmental demands. However, because emotions serve an important communicative function, their habitual suppression disrupts the flow of social exchanges and, thus, incurs significant interpersonal costs. Evidence is accruing that the disruption in social interactions, linked to habitual expressive suppression use, stems not only from intrapersonal, but also from interpersonal causes, since the suppressors' restricted affective displays reportedly inhibit their interlocutors' emotionally expressive behaviors. However, expressive suppression use is not known to lead to clinically significant social impairments. One explanation may be that over the lifespan, individuals who habitually suppress their emotions come to compensate for their interlocutors' restrained expressive behaviors by developing an increased sensitivity to nonverbal affective cues. To probe this issue, the present study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan healthy older women while they viewed silent videos of a male social target displaying nonverbal emotional behavior, together with a brief verbal description of the accompanying context, and then judged the target's affect. As predicted, perceivers who reported greater habitual use of expressive suppression showed increased neural processing of nonverbal affective cues. This effect appeared to be coordinated in a top-down manner via cognitive control. Greater neural processing of nonverbal cues among perceivers who habitually suppress their emotions was linked to increased ventral striatum activity, suggestive of increased reward value/personal relevance ascribed to emotionally expressive nonverbal behaviors. These findings thus provide neural evidence broadly consistent with the hypothesized link between habitual use of expressive suppression and compensatory development of increased responsiveness to

  5. Expressive suppression and neural responsiveness to nonverbal affective cues

    PubMed Central

    Petrican, Raluca; Rosenbaum, R. Shayna; Grady, Cheryl

    2016-01-01

    Optimal social functioning occasionally requires concealment of one’s emotions in order to meet one’s immediate goals and environmental demands. However, because emotions serve an important communicative function, their habitual suppression disrupts the flow of social exchanges and, thus, incurs significant interpersonal costs. Evidence is accruing that the disruption in social interactions, linked to habitual expressive suppression use, stems not only from intrapersonal, but also from interpersonal causes, since the suppressors’ restricted affective displays reportedly inhibit their interlocutors’ emotionally expressive behaviors. However, expressive suppression use is not known to lead to clinically significant social impairments. One explanation may be that over the lifespan, individuals who habitually suppress their emotions come to compensate for their interlocutors’ restrained expressive behaviors by developing an increased sensitivity to nonverbal affective cues. To probe this issue, the present study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan healthy older women while they viewed silent videos of a male social target displaying nonverbal emotional behavior, together with a brief verbal description of the accompanying context, and then judged the target’s affect. As predicted, perceivers who reported greater habitual use of expressive suppression showed increased neural processing of nonverbal affective cues. This effect appeared to be coordinated in a top-down manner via cognitive control. Greater neural processing of nonverbal cues among perceivers who habitually suppress their emotions was linked to increased ventral striatum activity, suggestive of increased reward value/personal relevance ascribed to emotionally expressive nonverbal behaviors. These findings thus provide neural evidence broadly consistent with the hypothesized link between habitual use of expressive suppression and compensatory development of increased

  6. Emotional task management: neural correlates of switching between affective and non-affective task-sets

    PubMed Central

    Reeck, Crystal

    2015-01-01

    Although task-switching has been investigated extensively, its interaction with emotionally salient task content remains unclear. Prioritized processing of affective stimulus content may enhance accessibility of affective task-sets and generate increased interference when switching between affective and non-affective task-sets. Previous research has demonstrated that more dominant task-sets experience greater switch costs, as they necessitate active inhibition during performance of less entrenched tasks. Extending this logic to the affective domain, the present experiment examined (a) whether affective task-sets are more dominant than non-affective ones, and (b) what neural mechanisms regulate affective task-sets, so that weaker, non-affective task-sets can be executed. While undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging, participants categorized face stimuli according to either their gender (non-affective task) or their emotional expression (affective task). Behavioral results were consistent with the affective task dominance hypothesis: participants were slower to switch to the affective task, and cross-task interference was strongest when participants tried to switch from the affective to the non-affective task. These behavioral costs of controlling the affective task-set were mirrored in the activation of a right-lateralized frontostriatal network previously implicated in task-set updating and response inhibition. Connectivity between amygdala and right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex was especially pronounced during cross-task interference from affective features. PMID:25552571

  7. Optoelectronic monitoring of neural activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xiuli; Quan, Tingwei; Zhou, Wei

    2008-12-01

    Neural activity is a process of induction and propagation of neural excitability. Clarifying the mechanism of neural activity is one of the basic goals of modern brain science. The calcium ion, a second messenger in the brain, plays key roles in neuronal signaling pathways. To detect electrophysiology signals basing on membrane potential change of neurons and fluorescence signals basing on calcium dynamics and fluorescence labeling technique is critical for understanding neuronal signaling. In this research, a random access two-photon fluorescence microscope system basing on acousto-optic deflectors was used to monitor calcium fluorescence signals of neurons, combining a HEKA patch clamp to detect neuronal electrophysiology synchronously. Results showed that the optoelectronic method to monitor the firing of action potential at 50 Hz has single action potential resolution.

  8. Neural Affective Mechanisms Predict Market-Level Microlending.

    PubMed

    Genevsky, Alexander; Knutson, Brian

    2015-09-01

    Humans sometimes share with others whom they may never meet or know, in violation of the dictates of pure self-interest. Research has not established which neuropsychological mechanisms support lending decisions, nor whether their influence extends to markets involving significant financial incentives. In two studies, we found that neural affective mechanisms influence the success of requests for microloans. In a large Internet database of microloan requests (N = 13,500), we found that positive affective features of photographs promoted the success of those requests. We then established that neural activity (i.e., in the nucleus accumbens) and self-reported positive arousal in a neuroimaging sample (N = 28) predicted the success of loan requests on the Internet, above and beyond the effects of the neuroimaging sample's own choices (i.e., to lend or not). These findings suggest that elicitation of positive arousal can promote the success of loan requests, both in the laboratory and on the Internet. They also highlight affective neuroscience's potential to probe neuropsychological mechanisms that drive microlending, enhance the effectiveness of loan requests, and forecast market-level behavior.

  9. Neural Correlates of Affective Influence on Choice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Piech, Richard M.; Lewis, Jade; Parkinson, Caroline H.; Owen, Adrian M.; Roberts, Angela C.; Downing, Paul E.; Parkinson, John A.

    2010-01-01

    Making the right choice depends crucially on the accurate valuation of the available options in the light of current needs and goals of an individual. Thus, the valuation of identical options can vary considerably with motivational context. The present study investigated the neural structures underlying context dependent evaluation. We instructed…

  10. Darwin and the neural bases of emotion and affective style.

    PubMed

    Davidson, Richard J

    2003-12-01

    This article presents an overview of ways to think about the brain and emotion and consider the role of evolution and expression in shaping the neural circuitry of affective processing. Issues pertaining to whether there are separate unique neural modules hard-wired for emotion processing or whether affective processing uses more generalized circuitry are considered. Relations between affect and cognition--specifically, memory--are examined from the perspective of overlapping neural systems. The role of individual differences in neural function in affective style are discussed, and the concepts of affective chronometry, or the time course of emotional responding and emotion regulation, are introduced. Finally, the extent to which certain emotional traits can be viewed as trainable skills is considered, and the relevance of work on neural plasticity to the skill framework is addressed. Data from a variety of sources using different types of measures is brought to bear on these questions, including neuroimaging and psychophysiological measures, studies of individuals of different ages ranging from early childhood to old age, studies of nonhuman primates, and observations of patients with localized brain damage. Emotions are viewed as varying in both type and dimension. Honoring brain circuitry in parsing the domain of affects will result in distinctions and differentiations that are not currently incorporated in traditional classification schemes. PMID:14766646

  11. Neural Cognition and Affective Computing on Cyber Language.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shuang; Zhou, Xuan; Xue, Ke; Wan, Xiqiong; Yang, Zhenyi; Xu, Duo; Ivanović, Mirjana; Yu, Xueer

    2015-01-01

    Characterized by its customary symbol system and simple and vivid expression patterns, cyber language acts as not only a tool for convenient communication but also a carrier of abundant emotions and causes high attention in public opinion analysis, internet marketing, service feedback monitoring, and social emergency management. Based on our multidisciplinary research, this paper presents a classification of the emotional symbols in cyber language, analyzes the cognitive characteristics of different symbols, and puts forward a mechanism model to show the dominant neural activities in that process. Through the comparative study of Chinese, English, and Spanish, which are used by the largest population in the world, this paper discusses the expressive patterns of emotions in international cyber languages and proposes an intelligent method for affective computing on cyber language in a unified PAD (Pleasure-Arousal-Dominance) emotional space.

  12. Neural Cognition and Affective Computing on Cyber Language.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shuang; Zhou, Xuan; Xue, Ke; Wan, Xiqiong; Yang, Zhenyi; Xu, Duo; Ivanović, Mirjana; Yu, Xueer

    2015-01-01

    Characterized by its customary symbol system and simple and vivid expression patterns, cyber language acts as not only a tool for convenient communication but also a carrier of abundant emotions and causes high attention in public opinion analysis, internet marketing, service feedback monitoring, and social emergency management. Based on our multidisciplinary research, this paper presents a classification of the emotional symbols in cyber language, analyzes the cognitive characteristics of different symbols, and puts forward a mechanism model to show the dominant neural activities in that process. Through the comparative study of Chinese, English, and Spanish, which are used by the largest population in the world, this paper discusses the expressive patterns of emotions in international cyber languages and proposes an intelligent method for affective computing on cyber language in a unified PAD (Pleasure-Arousal-Dominance) emotional space. PMID:26491431

  13. Neural Cognition and Affective Computing on Cyber Language

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Shuang; Zhou, Xuan; Xue, Ke; Wan, Xiqiong; Yang, Zhenyi; Xu, Duo; Ivanović, Mirjana; Yu, Xueer

    2015-01-01

    Characterized by its customary symbol system and simple and vivid expression patterns, cyber language acts as not only a tool for convenient communication but also a carrier of abundant emotions and causes high attention in public opinion analysis, internet marketing, service feedback monitoring, and social emergency management. Based on our multidisciplinary research, this paper presents a classification of the emotional symbols in cyber language, analyzes the cognitive characteristics of different symbols, and puts forward a mechanism model to show the dominant neural activities in that process. Through the comparative study of Chinese, English, and Spanish, which are used by the largest population in the world, this paper discusses the expressive patterns of emotions in international cyber languages and proposes an intelligent method for affective computing on cyber language in a unified PAD (Pleasure-Arousal-Dominance) emotional space. PMID:26491431

  14. Neural correlates of valence generalization in an affective conditioning paradigm.

    PubMed

    Schick, Anita; Adam, Ruth; Vollmayr, Barbara; Kuehner, Christine; Kanske, Philipp; Wessa, Michèle

    2015-10-01

    In case of uncertainty, predictions that are based on prior, similar experiences guide our decision by processes of generalization. Over-generalization of negative information has been identified as an important feature of several psychopathologies, including anxiety disorders and depression, and might underlie biased interpretation of ambiguous information. Here, we investigated the neural correlates of valence generalization to ambiguous stimuli using a translational affective conditioning task during fMRI. Twenty-five healthy individuals participated in a conditioning procedure with (1) an initial acquisition phase, where participants learned the positive and negative valence of two different tones (reference tones) through their responses and subsequent feedback and (2) a test phase, where participants were presented with the previously learned reference tones and three additional tones with intermediate frequency to the learned reference tones. By recording the responses to these intermediate stimuli we were able to assess the participantsí interpretation of ambiguous tones as either positive or negative. Behavioral results revealed a graded response pattern to the three intermediate tones, which was mirrored on the neural level. More specifically, parametric analyses OF BOLD responses to all five tones revealed a linear effect in bilateral anterior insula and SMA with lowest activation to the negative reference tone and highest activation to the positive negative tone. In addition, a cluster in the SMA showed a reverse-quadratic response, i.e., the strongest response for the most ambiguous tone. These findings suggest overlapping regions in the salience network that mediate valence generalization and decision-making under ambiguity, potentially underlying biased ambiguous cue interpretation. PMID:26057359

  15. Aging Affects Neural Synchronization to Speech-Related Acoustic Modulations

    PubMed Central

    Goossens, Tine; Vercammen, Charlotte; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid

    2016-01-01

    As people age, speech perception problems become highly prevalent, especially in noisy situations. In addition to peripheral hearing and cognition, temporal processing plays a key role in speech perception. Temporal processing of speech features is mediated by synchronized activity of neural oscillations in the central auditory system. Previous studies indicate that both the degree and hemispheric lateralization of synchronized neural activity relate to speech perception performance. Based on these results, we hypothesize that impaired speech perception in older persons may, in part, originate from deviances in neural synchronization. In this study, auditory steady-state responses that reflect synchronized activity of theta, beta, low and high gamma oscillations (i.e., 4, 20, 40, and 80 Hz ASSR, respectively) were recorded in young, middle-aged, and older persons. As all participants had normal audiometric thresholds and were screened for (mild) cognitive impairment, differences in synchronized neural activity across the three age groups were likely to be attributed to age. Our data yield novel findings regarding theta and high gamma oscillations in the aging auditory system. At an older age, synchronized activity of theta oscillations is increased, whereas high gamma synchronization is decreased. In contrast to young persons who exhibit a right hemispheric dominance for processing of high gamma range modulations, older adults show a symmetrical processing pattern. These age-related changes in neural synchronization may very well underlie the speech perception problems in aging persons. PMID:27378906

  16. Musical expertise affects neural bases of letter recognition.

    PubMed

    Proverbio, Alice Mado; Manfredi, Mirella; Zani, Alberto; Adorni, Roberta

    2013-02-01

    It is known that early music learning (playing of an instrument) modifies functional brain structure (both white and gray matter) and connectivity, especially callosal transfer, motor control/coordination and auditory processing. We compared visual processing of notes and words in 15 professional musicians and 15 controls by recording their synchronized bioelectrical activity (ERPs) in response to words and notes. We found that musical training in childhood (from age ~8 years) modifies neural mechanisms of word reading, whatever the genetic predisposition, which was unknown. While letter processing was strongly left-lateralized in controls, the fusiform (BA37) and inferior occipital gyri (BA18) were activated in both hemispheres in musicians for both word and music processing. The evidence that the neural mechanism of letter processing differed in musicians and controls (being absolutely bilateral in musicians) suggests that musical expertise modifies the neural mechanisms of letter reading.

  17. The common and distinct neural bases of affect labeling and reappraisal in healthy adults

    PubMed Central

    Burklund, Lisa J.; Creswell, J. David; Irwin, Michael R.; Lieberman, Matthew D.

    2014-01-01

    Emotion regulation is commonly characterized as involving conscious and intentional attempts to change felt emotions, such as, for example, through reappraisal whereby one intentionally decreases the intensity of one's emotional response to a particular stimulus or situation by reinterpreting it in a less threatening way. However, there is growing evidence and appreciation that some types of emotion regulation are unintentional or incidental, meaning that affective modulation is a consequence but not an explicit goal. For example, affect labeling involves simply verbally labeling the emotional content of an external stimulus or one's own affective responses without an intentional goal of altering emotional responses, yet has been associated with reduced affective responses at the neural and experiential levels. Although both intentional and incidental emotional regulation strategies have been associated with diminished limbic responses and self-reported distress, little previous research has directly compared their underlying neural mechanisms. In this study, we examined the extent to which incidental and intentional emotion regulation, namely, affect labeling and reappraisal, produced common and divergent neural and self-report responses to aversive images relative to an observe-only control condition in a sample of healthy older adults (N = 39). Affect labeling and reappraisal produced common activations in several prefrontal regulatory regions, with affect labeling producing stronger responses in direct comparisons. Affect labeling and reappraisal were also associated with similar decreases in amygdala activity. Finally, affect labeling and reappraisal were associated with correlated reductions in self-reported distress. Together these results point to common neurocognitive mechanisms involved in affect labeling and reappraisal, supporting the idea that intentional and incidental emotion regulation may utilize overlapping neural processes. PMID:24715880

  18. How Many People Are Affected By or Are at Risk for Neural Tube Defects?

    MedlinePlus

    ... are affected by or are at risk for neural tube defects? Skip sharing on social media links Share this: ... with spina bifida. 1 The other types of neural tube defects are less common. About 340 infants are born ...

  19. Neural networks underlying affective states in a multimodal virtual environment: contributions to boredom

    PubMed Central

    Mathiak, Krystyna A.; Klasen, Martin; Zvyagintsev, Mikhail; Weber, René; Mathiak, Klaus

    2013-01-01

    The interaction of low perceptual stimulation or goal-directed behavior with a negative subjective evaluation may lead to boredom. This contribution to boredom may shed light on its neural correlates, which are poorly characterized so far. A video game served as simulation of free interactive behavior without interruption of the game’s narrative. Thirteen male German volunteers played a first-person shooter game (Tactical Ops: Assault on Terror) during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Two independent coders performed the time-based analysis of the audio-visual game content. Boredom was operationalized as interaction of prolonged absence of goal-directed behavior with lowered affect in the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS). A decrease of positive affect (PA) correlated with response amplitudes in bilateral insular clusters extending into the amygdala to prolonged inactive phases in a game play and an increase in negative affect (NA) was associated with higher responses in bilateral ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). Precuneus and hippocampus responses were negatively correlated with changes in NA. We describe for the first time neural contributions to boredom, using a video game as complex virtual environment. Further our study confirmed that PA and NA are separable constructs, reflected by distinct neural patterns. PA may be associated with afferent limbic activity whereas NA with affective control. PMID:24348366

  20. Neural coding of computational factors affecting decision making.

    PubMed

    Dreher, Jean-Claude

    2013-01-01

    We constantly need to make decisions that can result in rewards of different amounts with different probabilities and at different timing. To characterize the neural coding of such computational factors affecting value-based decision making, we have investigated how reward information processing is influenced by parameters such as reward magnitude, probability, delay, effort, and uncertainty using either fMRI in healthy humans or intracranial recordings in patients with epilepsy. We decomposed brain signals modulated by these computational factors, showing that prediction error (PE), salient PE, and uncertainty signals are computed in partially overlapping brain circuits and that both transient and sustained uncertainty signals coexist in the brain. When investigating the neural representation of primary and secondary rewards, we found both a common brain network, including the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ventral striatum, and a functional organization of the orbitofrontal cortex according to reward type. Moreover, separate valuation systems were engaged for delay and effort costs when deciding between options. Finally, genetic variations in dopamine-related genes influenced the response of the reward system and may contribute to individual differences in reward-seeking behavior and in predisposition to neuropsychiatric disorders.

  1. The neural basis of risky choice with affective outcomes.

    PubMed

    Suter, Renata S; Pachur, Thorsten; Hertwig, Ralph; Endestad, Tor; Biele, Guido

    2015-01-01

    Both normative and many descriptive theories of decision making under risk are based on the notion that outcomes are weighted by their probability, with subsequent maximization of the (subjective) expected outcome. Numerous investigations from psychology, economics, and neuroscience have produced evidence consistent with this notion. However, this research has typically investigated choices involving relatively affect-poor, monetary outcomes. We compared choice in relatively affect-poor, monetary lottery problems with choice in relatively affect-rich medical decision problems. Computational modeling of behavioral data and model-based neuroimaging analyses provide converging evidence for substantial differences in the respective decision mechanisms. Relative to affect-poor choices, affect-rich choices yielded a more strongly curved probability weighting function of cumulative prospect theory, thus signaling that the psychological impact of probabilities is strongly diminished for affect-rich outcomes. Examining task-dependent brain activation, we identified a region-by-condition interaction indicating qualitative differences of activation between affect-rich and affect-poor choices. Moreover, brain activation in regions that were more active during affect-poor choices (e.g., the supramarginal gyrus) correlated with individual trial-by-trial decision weights, indicating that these regions reflect processing of probabilities. Formal reverse inference Neurosynth meta-analyses suggested that whereas affect-poor choices seem to be based on brain mechanisms for calculative processes, affect-rich choices are driven by the representation of outcomes' emotional value and autobiographical memories associated with them. These results provide evidence that the traditional notion of expectation maximization may not apply in the context of outcomes laden with affective responses, and that understanding the brain mechanisms of decision making requires the domain of the decision to

  2. Genetic Control of Active Neural Circuits

    PubMed Central

    Reijmers, Leon; Mayford, Mark

    2009-01-01

    The use of molecular tools to study the neurobiology of complex behaviors has been hampered by an inability to target the desired changes to relevant groups of neurons. Specific memories and specific sensory representations are sparsely encoded by a small fraction of neurons embedded in a sea of morphologically and functionally similar cells. In this review we discuss genetics techniques that are being developed to address this difficulty. In several studies the use of promoter elements that are responsive to neural activity have been used to drive long-lasting genetic alterations into neural ensembles that are activated by natural environmental stimuli. This approach has been used to examine neural activity patterns during learning and retrieval of a memory, to examine the regulation of receptor trafficking following learning and to functionally manipulate a specific memory trace. We suggest that these techniques will provide a general approach to experimentally investigate the link between patterns of environmentally activated neural firing and cognitive processes such as perception and memory. PMID:20057936

  3. How advances in neural recording affect data analysis.

    PubMed

    Stevenson, Ian H; Kording, Konrad P

    2011-02-01

    Over the last five decades, progress in neural recording techniques has allowed the number of simultaneously recorded neurons to double approximately every 7 years, mimicking Moore's law. Such exponential growth motivates us to ask how data analysis techniques are affected by progressively larger numbers of recorded neurons. Traditionally, neurons are analyzed independently on the basis of their tuning to stimuli or movement. Although tuning curve approaches are unaffected by growing numbers of simultaneously recorded neurons, newly developed techniques that analyze interactions between neurons become more accurate and more complex as the number of recorded neurons increases. Emerging data analysis techniques should consider both the computational costs and the potential for more accurate models associated with this exponential growth of the number of recorded neurons.

  4. Short-term duloxetine administration affects neural correlates of mood-congruent memory.

    PubMed

    Tendolkar, Indira; van Wingen, Guido; Urner, Maren; Verkes, Robbert Jan; Fernández, Guillén

    2011-10-01

    It is unknown how antidepressants reverse mood-congruent memory bias, a cognitive core factor causing and maintaining depression. Using a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over design, we investigated the effect of a short-term treatment (14 days) with the dual reuptake inhibitor duloxetine on neural correlates of mood-congruent and mood-incongruent memory formation and retrieval in healthy volunteers who underwent a sad mood induction procedure. Duloxetine did not affect acute mood state or memory performance, but interacted with brain processes mediating mood-congruent memory. It decreased activity related to successful memory formation for mood-congruent and -incongruent items in a set of brain regions comprising the putamen and the middle frontal gyrus, as well as the middle and the anterior cingulate cortex. Duloxetine specifically increased amygdala activity related to successful memory retrieval for mood-incongruent items. Here we show that short-term administration of duloxetine affects the neural correlates of emotional memory formation and retrieval in a set of brain regions whose processing is related to affective state and its regulation. While duloxetine suppressed the neural correlates of emotional memory formation in general, it specifically enhanced amygdala processes associated with mood-incongruent memory retrieval. This pattern of results shows how an antidepressant may reduce emotional memory formation and reverse mood-congruent processing biases at retrieval.

  5. How Tissue Mechanical Properties Affect Enteric Neural Crest Cell Migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chevalier, N. R.; Gazguez, E.; Bidault, L.; Guilbert, T.; Vias, C.; Vian, E.; Watanabe, Y.; Muller, L.; Germain, S.; Bondurand, N.; Dufour, S.; Fleury, V.

    2016-02-01

    Neural crest cells (NCCs) are a population of multipotent cells that migrate extensively during vertebrate development. Alterations to neural crest ontogenesis cause several diseases, including cancers and congenital defects, such as Hirschprung disease, which results from incomplete colonization of the colon by enteric NCCs (ENCCs). We investigated the influence of the stiffness and structure of the environment on ENCC migration in vitro and during colonization of the gastrointestinal tract in chicken and mouse embryos. We showed using tensile stretching and atomic force microscopy (AFM) that the mesenchyme of the gut was initially soft but gradually stiffened during the period of ENCC colonization. Second-harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy revealed that this stiffening was associated with a gradual organization and enrichment of collagen fibers in the developing gut. Ex-vivo 2D cell migration assays showed that ENCCs migrated on substrates with very low levels of stiffness. In 3D collagen gels, the speed of the ENCC migratory front decreased with increasing gel stiffness, whereas no correlation was found between porosity and ENCC migration behavior. Metalloprotease inhibition experiments showed that ENCCs actively degraded collagen in order to progress. These results shed light on the role of the mechanical properties of tissues in ENCC migration during development.

  6. How Tissue Mechanical Properties Affect Enteric Neural Crest Cell Migration

    PubMed Central

    Chevalier, N.R.; Gazguez, E.; Bidault, L.; Guilbert, T.; Vias, C.; Vian, E.; Watanabe, Y.; Muller, L.; Germain, S.; Bondurand, N.; Dufour, S.; Fleury, V.

    2016-01-01

    Neural crest cells (NCCs) are a population of multipotent cells that migrate extensively during vertebrate development. Alterations to neural crest ontogenesis cause several diseases, including cancers and congenital defects, such as Hirschprung disease, which results from incomplete colonization of the colon by enteric NCCs (ENCCs). We investigated the influence of the stiffness and structure of the environment on ENCC migration in vitro and during colonization of the gastrointestinal tract in chicken and mouse embryos. We showed using tensile stretching and atomic force microscopy (AFM) that the mesenchyme of the gut was initially soft but gradually stiffened during the period of ENCC colonization. Second-harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy revealed that this stiffening was associated with a gradual organization and enrichment of collagen fibers in the developing gut. Ex-vivo 2D cell migration assays showed that ENCCs migrated on substrates with very low levels of stiffness. In 3D collagen gels, the speed of the ENCC migratory front decreased with increasing gel stiffness, whereas no correlation was found between porosity and ENCC migration behavior. Metalloprotease inhibition experiments showed that ENCCs actively degraded collagen in order to progress. These results shed light on the role of the mechanical properties of tissues in ENCC migration during development. PMID:26887292

  7. Common and Segregated Neural Substrates for Automatic Conceptual and Affective Priming as Revealed by Event-Related Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Hongyan; Hu, Zhiguo; Peng, Danling; Yang, Yanhui; Li, Kuncheng

    2010-01-01

    The brain activity associated with automatic semantic priming has been extensively studied. Thus far there has been no prior study that directly contrasts the neural mechanisms of semantic and affective priming. The present study employed event-related fMRI to examine the common and distinct neural bases underlying conceptual and affective priming…

  8. Neural activation during response competition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hazeltine, E.; Poldrack, R.; Gabrieli, J. D.

    2000-01-01

    The flanker task, introduced by Eriksen and Eriksen [Eriksen, B. A., & Eriksen, C. W. (1974). Effects of noise letters upon the identification of a target letter in a nonsearch task. Perception & Psychophysics, 16, 143--149], provides a means to selectively manipulate the presence or absence of response competition while keeping other task demands constant. We measured brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during performance of the flanker task. In accordance with previous behavioral studies, trials in which the flanking stimuli indicated a different response than the central stimulus were performed significantly more slowly than trials in which all the stimuli indicated the same response. This reaction time effect was accompanied by increases in activity in four regions: the right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, the supplementary motor area, the left superior parietal lobe, and the left anterior parietal cortex. The increases were not due to changes in stimulus complexity or the need to overcome previously learned associations between stimuli and responses. Correspondences between this study and other experiments manipulating response interference suggest that the frontal foci may be related to response inhibition processes whereas the posterior foci may be related to the activation of representations of the inappropriate responses.

  9. Affective personality differences in neural processing efficiency confirmed using fMRI.

    PubMed

    Gray, Jeremy R; Burgess, Gregory C; Schaefer, Alexandre; Yarkoni, Tal; Larsen, Randy J; Braver, Todd S

    2005-06-01

    To test for a relation between individual differences in personality and neural-processing efficiency, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to assess brain activity within regions associated with cognitive control during a demanding working memory task. Fifty-three participants completed both the self-report behavioral inhibition sensitivity (BIS) and behavioral approach sensitivity (BAS) personality scales and a standard measure of fluid intelligence (Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices). They were then scanned as they performed a three-back working memory task. A mixed blocked/ event-related fMRI design enabled us to identify both sustained and transient neural activity. Higher BAS was negatively related to event-related activity in the dorsal anterior cingulate, the lateral prefrontal cortex, and parietal areas in regions of interest identified in previous work. These relationships were not explained by differences in either behavioral performance or fluid intelligence, consistent with greater neural efficiency. The results reveal the high specificity of the relationships among personality, cognition, and brain activity. The data confirm that affective dimensions of personality are independent of intelligence, yet also suggest that they might be interrelated in subtle ways, because they modulate activity in overlapping brain regions that appear to be critical for task performance. PMID:16180624

  10. Neural predictive control for active buffet alleviation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pado, Lawrence E.; Lichtenwalner, Peter F.; Liguore, Salvatore L.; Drouin, Donald

    1998-06-01

    The adaptive neural control of aeroelastic response (ANCAR) and the affordable loads and dynamics independent research and development (IRAD) programs at the Boeing Company jointly examined using neural network based active control technology for alleviating undesirable vibration and aeroelastic response in a scale model aircraft vertical tail. The potential benefits of adaptive control includes reducing aeroelastic response associated with buffet and atmospheric turbulence, increasing flutter margins, and reducing response associated with nonlinear phenomenon like limit cycle oscillations. By reducing vibration levels and thus loads, aircraft structures can have lower acquisition cost, reduced maintenance, and extended lifetimes. Wind tunnel tests were undertaken on a rigid 15% scale aircraft in Boeing's mini-speed wind tunnel, which is used for testing at very low air speeds up to 80 mph. The model included a dynamically scaled flexible fail consisting of an aluminum spar with balsa wood cross sections with a hydraulically powered rudder. Neural predictive control was used to actuate the vertical tail rudder in response to strain gauge feedback to alleviate buffeting effects. First mode RMS strain reduction of 50% was achieved. The neural predictive control system was developed and implemented by the Boeing Company to provide an intelligent, adaptive control architecture for smart structures applications with automated synthesis, self-optimization, real-time adaptation, nonlinear control, and fault tolerance capabilities. It is designed to solve complex control problems though a process of automated synthesis, eliminating costly control design and surpassing it in many instances by accounting for real world non-linearities.

  11. Psychophysiology of neural, cognitive and affective integration: fMRI and autonomic indicants.

    PubMed

    Critchley, Hugo D

    2009-08-01

    Behaviour is shaped by environmental challenge in the context of homoeostatic need. Emotional and cognitive processes evoke patterned changes in bodily state that may signal emotional state to others. This dynamic modulation of visceral state is neurally mediated by sympathetic and parasympathetic divisions of the autonomic nervous system. Moreover neural afferents convey representations of the internal state of the body back to the brain to further influence emotion and cognition. Neuroimaging and lesion studies implicate specific regions of limbic forebrain in the behavioural generation of autonomic arousal states. Activity within these regions may predict emotion-specific autonomic response patterns within and between bodily organs, with implications for psychosomatic medicine. Feedback from the viscera is mapped hierarchically in the brain to influence efferent signals, and ultimately at the cortical level to engender and reinforce affective responses and subjective feeling states. Again neuroimaging and patient studies suggest discrete neural substrates for these representations, notably regions of insula and orbitofrontal cortex. Individual differences in conscious access to these interoceptive representations predict differences in emotional experience, but equally the misperception of heightened arousal level may evoke changes in emotional behaviour through engagement of the same neural centres. Perturbation of feedback may impair emotional reactivity and, in the context of inflammatory states give rise to cognitive, affective and psychomotor expressions of illness. Changes in visceral state during emotion may be mirrored in the responses of others, permitting a corresponding representation in the observer. The degree to which individuals are susceptible to this 'contagion' predicts individual differences in questionnaire ratings of empathy. Together these neuroimaging and clinical studies highlight the dynamic relationship between mind and body and help

  12. Neural Correlates of Affect Processing and Aggression in Methamphetamine Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Payer, Doris E.; Lieberman, Matthew D.; London, Edythe D.

    2012-01-01

    Context Methamphetamine abuse is associated with high rates of aggression, but few studies have addressed the contributing neurobiological factors. Objective To quantify aggression, investigate function of the amygdala and prefrontal cortex, and assess relationships between brain function and behavior in methamphetamine-dependent individuals. Design In a case-control study, aggression and brain activation were compared between methamphetamine-dependent and control participants. Setting Participants were recruited from the general community to an academic research center. Participants Thirty-nine methamphetamine-dependent volunteers (16 women) who were abstinent for 7 to 10 days and 37 drug-free control volunteers (18 women) participated in the study; subsets completed self-report and behavioral measures. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was performed on 25 methamphetamine-dependent and 23 control participants. Main outcome measures We measured self-reported and perpetrated aggression, and self-reported alexithymia. Brain activation was assessed using fMRI during visual processing of facial affect (affect matching), and symbolic processing (affect labeling), the latter representing an incidental form of emotion regulation. Results Methamphetamine-dependent participants self-reported more aggression and alexithymia than control participants and escalated perpetrated aggression more following provocation. Alexithymia scores correlated with measures of aggression. During affect matching, fMRI showed no differences between groups in amygdala activation, but found lower activation in methamphetamine-dependent than control participants in bilateral ventral inferior frontal gyrus. During affect labeling, participants recruited dorsal inferior frontal gyrus and exhibited decreased amygdala activity, consistent with successful emotion regulation; there was no group difference in this effect. The magnitude of decrease in amygdala activity during affect labeling

  13. Abnormal folate metabolism in foetuses affected by neural tube defects.

    PubMed

    Dunlevy, Louisa P E; Chitty, Lyn S; Burren, Katie A; Doudney, Kit; Stojilkovic-Mikic, Taita; Stanier, Philip; Scott, Rosemary; Copp, Andrew J; Greene, Nicholas D E

    2007-04-01

    Folic acid supplementation can prevent many cases of neural tube defects (NTDs), whereas suboptimal maternal folate status is a risk factor, suggesting that folate metabolism is a key determinant of susceptibility to NTDs. Despite extensive genetic analysis of folate cycle enzymes, and quantification of metabolites in maternal blood, neither the protective mechanism nor the relationship between maternal folate status and susceptibility are understood in most cases. In order to investigate potential abnormalities in folate metabolism in the embryo itself, we derived primary fibroblastic cell lines from foetuses affected by NTDs and subjected them to the dU suppression test, a sensitive metabolic test of folate metabolism. Significantly, a subset of NTD cases exhibited low scores in this test, indicative of abnormalities in folate cycling that may be causally linked to the defect. Susceptibility to NTDs may be increased by suppression of the methylation cycle, which is interlinked with the folate cycle. However, reduced efficacy in the dU suppression test was not associated with altered abundance of the methylation cycle intermediates, s-adenosylmethionine and s-adenosylhomocysteine, suggesting that a methylation cycle defect is unlikely to be responsible for the observed abnormality of folate metabolism. Genotyping of samples for known polymorphisms in genes encoding folate-associated enzymes did not reveal any correlation between specific genotypes and the observed abnormalities in folate metabolism. These data suggest that as yet unrecognized genetic variants result in embryonic abnormalities of folate cycling that may be causally related to NTDs. PMID:17438019

  14. Power to Punish Norm Violations Affects the Neural Processes of Fairness-Related Decision Making.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Xuemei; Zheng, Li; Li, Lin; Guo, Xiuyan; Wang, Qianfeng; Lord, Anton; Hu, Zengxi; Yang, Guang

    2015-01-01

    Punishing norm violations is considered an important motive during rejection of unfair offers in the ultimatum game (UG). The present study investigates the impact of the power to punish norm violations on people's responses to unfairness and associated neural correlates. In the UG condition participants had the power to punish norm violations, while an alternate condition, the impunity game (IG), was presented where participants had no power to punish norm violations since rejection only reduced the responder's income to zero. Results showed that unfair offers were rejected more often in UG compared to IG. At the neural level, anterior insula and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex were more active when participants received and rejected unfair offers in both UG and IG. Moreover, greater dorsolateral prefrontal cortex activity was observed when participants rejected than accepted unfair offers in UG but not in IG. Ventromedial prefrontal cortex activation was higher in UG than IG when unfair offers were accepted as well as when rejecting unfair offers in IG as opposed to UG. Taken together, our results demonstrate that the power to punish norm violations affects not only people's behavioral responses to unfairness but also the neural correlates of the fairness-related social decision-making process.

  15. Persistent neural activity in head direction cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Taube, Jeffrey S.; Bassett, Joshua P.; Oman, C. M. (Principal Investigator)

    2003-01-01

    Many neurons throughout the rat limbic system discharge in relation to the animal's directional heading with respect to its environment. These so-called head direction (HD) cells exhibit characteristics of persistent neural activity. This article summarizes where HD cells are found, their major properties, and some of the important experiments that have been conducted to elucidate how this signal is generated. The number of HD and angular head velocity cells was estimated for several brain areas involved in the generation of the HD signal, including the postsubiculum, anterior dorsal thalamus, lateral mammillary nuclei and dorsal tegmental nucleus. The HD cell signal has many features in common with what is known about how neural integration is accomplished in the oculomotor system. The nature of the HD cell signal makes it an attractive candidate for using neural network models to elucidate the signal's underlying mechanisms. The conditions that any network model must satisfy in order to accurately represent how the nervous system generates this signal are highlighted and areas where key information is missing are discussed.

  16. Negative affect and neural response to palatable food intake in bulimia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Bohon, Cara; Stice, Eric

    2012-06-01

    Binge eating is often preceded by reports of negative affect, but the mechanism by which affect may lead to binge eating is unclear. This study evaluated the effect of negative affect on neural response to anticipation and receipt of palatable food in women with bulimia nervosa (BN) versus healthy controls. We also evaluated connectivity between the amygdala and reward-related brain regions. Females with and without BN (n=26) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during receipt and anticipated receipt of chocolate milkshake and a tasteless solution. We measured negative affect just prior to the scan. Women with BN showed a positive correlation between negative affect and activity in the putamen, caudate, and pallidum during anticipated receipt of milkshake (versus tasteless solution). There were no significant relations between negative affect and receipt of milkshake. Connectivity analyses revealed a greater relation of amygdala activity to activation in the left putamen and insula during anticipated receipt of milkshake in the bulimia group relative to the control group. The opposite pattern was found for the taste of milkshake; the control group showed a greater relation of amygdala activity to activation in the left putamen and insula in response to milkshake receipt than the bulimia group. Results show that as negative affect increases, so does responsivity of reward regions to anticipated intake of palatable food, implying that negative affect may increase the reward value of food for individuals with bulimia nervosa or that negative affect has become a conditioned cue due to a history of binge eating in a negative mood.

  17. Actor-recipient role affects neural responses to self in emotional situations

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaoyan; Zheng, Li; Cheng, Xuemei; Li, Lin; Sun, Lining; Wang, Qianfeng; Guo, Xiuyan

    2015-01-01

    People often take either the role of an actor or that of recipient in positive and negative interpersonal events when they interact with others. The present study investigated how the actor-recipient role affected the neural responses to self in emotional situations. Twenty-five participants were scanned while they were presented with positive and negative interpersonal events and were asked to rate the degree to which the actor/the recipient was that kind of person who caused the interpersonal event. Half of the trials were self-relevant events and the other half were other-relevant events. Results showed that people were more likely to isolate self from negative events when they played the role of actor relative to recipient. Pregenual anterior cingulate cortex (pgACC) and posterior dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (pdACC) were more active for self than other only in negative events. More importantly, also in negative interpersonal events, dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC) showed greater self-related activations (self-other) when participants played the role of recipient relative to actor, while activities in orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) were greater for self than other only when the evaluation target played the role of recipient. These results showed that the actor-recipient role affected neural responses to self in emotional situations, especially when a recipient role was played in negative situations. PMID:25926781

  18. Compassion-based emotion regulation up-regulates experienced positive affect and associated neural networks

    PubMed Central

    Singer, Tania

    2015-01-01

    Emotion regulation research has primarily focused on techniques that attenuate or modulate the impact of emotional stimuli. Recent evidence suggests that this mode regulation can be problematic in the context of regulation of emotion elicited by the suffering of others, resulting in reduced emotional connectedness. Here, we investigated the effects of an alternative emotion regulation technique based on the up-regulation of positive affect via Compassion-meditation on experiential and neural affective responses to depictions of individuals in distress, and compared these with the established emotion regulation strategy of Reappraisal. Using fMRI, we scanned 15 expert practitioners of Compassion-meditation either passively viewing, or using Compassion-meditation or Reappraisal to modulate their emotional reactions to film clips depicting people in distress. Both strategies effectively, but differentially regulated experienced affect, with Compassion primarily increasing positive and Reappraisal primarily decreasing negative affect. Imaging results showed that Compassion, relative to both passive-viewing and Reappraisal increased activation in regions involved in affiliation, positive affect and reward processing including ventral striatum and medial orbitfrontal cortex. This network was shown to be active prior to stimulus presentation, suggesting that the regulatory mechanism of Compassion is the stimulus-independent endogenous generation of positive affect. PMID:25698699

  19. Compassion-based emotion regulation up-regulates experienced positive affect and associated neural networks.

    PubMed

    Engen, Haakon G; Singer, Tania

    2015-09-01

    Emotion regulation research has primarily focused on techniques that attenuate or modulate the impact of emotional stimuli. Recent evidence suggests that this mode regulation can be problematic in the context of regulation of emotion elicited by the suffering of others, resulting in reduced emotional connectedness. Here, we investigated the effects of an alternative emotion regulation technique based on the up-regulation of positive affect via Compassion-meditation on experiential and neural affective responses to depictions of individuals in distress, and compared these with the established emotion regulation strategy of Reappraisal. Using fMRI, we scanned 15 expert practitioners of Compassion-meditation either passively viewing, or using Compassion-meditation or Reappraisal to modulate their emotional reactions to film clips depicting people in distress. Both strategies effectively, but differentially regulated experienced affect, with Compassion primarily increasing positive and Reappraisal primarily decreasing negative affect. Imaging results showed that Compassion, relative to both passive-viewing and Reappraisal increased activation in regions involved in affiliation, positive affect and reward processing including ventral striatum and medial orbitfrontal cortex. This network was shown to be active prior to stimulus presentation, suggesting that the regulatory mechanism of Compassion is the stimulus-independent endogenous generation of positive affect. PMID:25698699

  20. Compassion-based emotion regulation up-regulates experienced positive affect and associated neural networks.

    PubMed

    Engen, Haakon G; Singer, Tania

    2015-09-01

    Emotion regulation research has primarily focused on techniques that attenuate or modulate the impact of emotional stimuli. Recent evidence suggests that this mode regulation can be problematic in the context of regulation of emotion elicited by the suffering of others, resulting in reduced emotional connectedness. Here, we investigated the effects of an alternative emotion regulation technique based on the up-regulation of positive affect via Compassion-meditation on experiential and neural affective responses to depictions of individuals in distress, and compared these with the established emotion regulation strategy of Reappraisal. Using fMRI, we scanned 15 expert practitioners of Compassion-meditation either passively viewing, or using Compassion-meditation or Reappraisal to modulate their emotional reactions to film clips depicting people in distress. Both strategies effectively, but differentially regulated experienced affect, with Compassion primarily increasing positive and Reappraisal primarily decreasing negative affect. Imaging results showed that Compassion, relative to both passive-viewing and Reappraisal increased activation in regions involved in affiliation, positive affect and reward processing including ventral striatum and medial orbitfrontal cortex. This network was shown to be active prior to stimulus presentation, suggesting that the regulatory mechanism of Compassion is the stimulus-independent endogenous generation of positive affect.

  1. Peripheral neural activity recording and stimulation system.

    PubMed

    Loi, D; Carboni, C; Angius, G; Angotzi, G N; Barbaro, M; Raffo, L; Raspopovic, S; Navarro, X

    2011-08-01

    This paper presents a portable, embedded, microcontroller-based system for bidirectional communication (recording and stimulation) between an electrode, implanted in the peripheral nervous system, and a host computer. The device is able to record and digitize spontaneous and/or evoked neural activities and store them in data files on a PC. In addition, the system has the capability of providing electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves, injecting biphasic current pulses with programmable duration, intensity, and frequency. The recording system provides a highly selective band-pass filter from 800 Hz to 3 kHz, with a gain of 56 dB. The amplification range can be further extended to 96 dB with a variable gain amplifier. The proposed acquisition/stimulation circuitry has been successfully tested through in vivo measurements, implanting a tf-LIFE electrode in the sciatic nerve of a rat. Once implanted, the device showed an input referred noise of 0.83 μVrms, was capable of recording signals below 10 μ V, and generated muscle responses to injected stimuli. The results demonstrate the capability of processing and transmitting neural signals with very low distortion and with a power consumption lower than 1 W. A graphic, user-friendly interface has been developed to facilitate the configuration of the entire system, providing the possibility to activate stimulation and monitor recordings in real time.

  2. The impoverished brain: disparities in maternal education affect the neural response to sound.

    PubMed

    Skoe, Erika; Krizman, Jennifer; Kraus, Nina

    2013-10-30

    Despite the prevalence of poverty worldwide, little is known about how early socioeconomic adversity affects auditory brain function. Socioeconomically disadvantaged children are underexposed to linguistically and cognitively stimulating environments and overexposed to environmental toxins, including noise pollution. This kind of sensory impoverishment, we theorize, has extensive repercussions on how the brain processes sound. To characterize how this impoverishment affects auditory brain function, we compared two groups of normal-hearing human adolescents who attended the same schools and who were matched in age, sex, and ethnicity, but differed in their maternal education level, a correlate of socioeconomic status (SES). In addition to lower literacy levels and cognitive abilities, adolescents from lower maternal education backgrounds were found to have noisier neural activity than their classmates, as reflected by greater activity in the absence of auditory stimulation. Additionally, in the lower maternal education group, the neural response to speech was more erratic over repeated stimulation, with lower fidelity to the input signal. These weaker, more variable, and noisier responses are suggestive of an inefficient auditory system. By studying SES within a neuroscientific framework, we have the potential to expand our understanding of how experience molds the brain, in addition to informing intervention research aimed at closing the achievement gap between high-SES and low-SES children. PMID:24174656

  3. The impoverished brain: disparities in maternal education affect the neural response to sound.

    PubMed

    Skoe, Erika; Krizman, Jennifer; Kraus, Nina

    2013-10-30

    Despite the prevalence of poverty worldwide, little is known about how early socioeconomic adversity affects auditory brain function. Socioeconomically disadvantaged children are underexposed to linguistically and cognitively stimulating environments and overexposed to environmental toxins, including noise pollution. This kind of sensory impoverishment, we theorize, has extensive repercussions on how the brain processes sound. To characterize how this impoverishment affects auditory brain function, we compared two groups of normal-hearing human adolescents who attended the same schools and who were matched in age, sex, and ethnicity, but differed in their maternal education level, a correlate of socioeconomic status (SES). In addition to lower literacy levels and cognitive abilities, adolescents from lower maternal education backgrounds were found to have noisier neural activity than their classmates, as reflected by greater activity in the absence of auditory stimulation. Additionally, in the lower maternal education group, the neural response to speech was more erratic over repeated stimulation, with lower fidelity to the input signal. These weaker, more variable, and noisier responses are suggestive of an inefficient auditory system. By studying SES within a neuroscientific framework, we have the potential to expand our understanding of how experience molds the brain, in addition to informing intervention research aimed at closing the achievement gap between high-SES and low-SES children.

  4. Deep Neural Networks with Multistate Activation Functions

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Chenghao; Xu, Yanyan; Ke, Dengfeng; Su, Kaile

    2015-01-01

    We propose multistate activation functions (MSAFs) for deep neural networks (DNNs). These MSAFs are new kinds of activation functions which are capable of representing more than two states, including the N-order MSAFs and the symmetrical MSAF. DNNs with these MSAFs can be trained via conventional Stochastic Gradient Descent (SGD) as well as mean-normalised SGD. We also discuss how these MSAFs perform when used to resolve classification problems. Experimental results on the TIMIT corpus reveal that, on speech recognition tasks, DNNs with MSAFs perform better than the conventional DNNs, getting a relative improvement of 5.60% on phoneme error rates. Further experiments also reveal that mean-normalised SGD facilitates the training processes of DNNs with MSAFs, especially when being with large training sets. The models can also be directly trained without pretraining when the training set is sufficiently large, which results in a considerable relative improvement of 5.82% on word error rates. PMID:26448739

  5. Active voltammetric microsensors with neural signal processing.

    SciTech Connect

    Vogt, M. C.

    1998-12-11

    Many industrial and environmental processes, including bioremediation, would benefit from the feedback and control information provided by a local multi-analyte chemical sensor. For most processes, such a sensor would need to be rugged enough to be placed in situ for long-term remote monitoring, and inexpensive enough to be fielded in useful numbers. The multi-analyte capability is difficult to obtain from common passive sensors, but can be provided by an active device that produces a spectrum-type response. Such new active gas microsensor technology has been developed at Argonne National Laboratory. The technology couples an electrocatalytic ceramic-metallic (cermet) microsensor with a voltammetric measurement technique and advanced neural signal processing. It has been demonstrated to be flexible, rugged, and very economical to produce and deploy. Both narrow interest detectors and wide spectrum instruments have been developed around this technology. Much of this technology's strength lies in the active measurement technique employed. The technique involves applying voltammetry to a miniature electrocatalytic cell to produce unique chemical ''signatures'' from the analytes. These signatures are processed with neural pattern recognition algorithms to identify and quantify the components in the analyte. The neural signal processing allows for innovative sampling and analysis strategies to be employed with the microsensor. In most situations, the whole response signature from the voltammogram can be used to identify, classify, and quantify an analyte, without dissecting it into component parts. This allows an instrument to be calibrated once for a specific gas or mixture of gases by simple exposure to a multi-component standard rather than by a series of individual gases. The sampled unknown analytes can vary in composition or in concentration, the calibration, sensing, and processing methods of these active voltammetric microsensors can detect, recognize, and

  6. Neural correlates of partial lexical activation

    PubMed Central

    Pirog Revill, Kathleen; Aslin, Richard N.; Tanenhaus, Michael K.; Bavelier, Daphne

    2008-01-01

    As a spoken word unfolds over time, it is temporarily consistent with the acoustic forms of multiple words. Previous behavioral research has shown that, in the face of temporary ambiguity about how a word will end, multiple candidate words are briefly activated. Here, we provide neural imaging evidence that lexical candidates only temporarily consistent with the input activate perceptually based semantic representations. An artificial lexicon and novel visual environment were used to target human MT/V5 and an area anterior to it which have been shown to be recruited during the reading of motion words. Participants learned words that referred to novel objects and to motion or color/texture changes that the objects underwent. The lexical items corresponding to the change events were organized into phonologically similar pairs differing only in the final syllable. Upon hearing spoken scene descriptions in a posttraining verification task, participants showed greater activation in the left hemisphere anterior extent of MT/V5 when motion words were heard than when nonmotion words were heard. Importantly, when a nonmotion word was heard, the level of activation in the anterior extent of MT/V5 was modulated by whether there was a phonologically related competitor that was a motion word rather than another nonmotion word. These results provide evidence of activation of a perceptual brain region in response to the semantics of a word while lexical competition is in process and before the word is fully recognized. PMID:18725635

  7. Can Neural Activity Propagate by Endogenous Electrical Field?

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Chen; Shivacharan, Rajat S.; Zhang, Mingming

    2015-01-01

    It is widely accepted that synaptic transmissions and gap junctions are the major governing mechanisms for signal traveling in the neural system. Yet, a group of neural waves, either physiological or pathological, share the same speed of ∼0.1 m/s without synaptic transmission or gap junctions, and this speed is not consistent with axonal conduction or ionic diffusion. The only explanation left is an electrical field effect. We tested the hypothesis that endogenous electric fields are sufficient to explain the propagation with in silico and in vitro experiments. Simulation results show that field effects alone can indeed mediate propagation across layers of neurons with speeds of 0.12 ± 0.09 m/s with pathological kinetics, and 0.11 ± 0.03 m/s with physiologic kinetics, both generating weak field amplitudes of ∼2–6 mV/mm. Further, the model predicted that propagation speed values are inversely proportional to the cell-to-cell distances, but do not significantly change with extracellular resistivity, membrane capacitance, or membrane resistance. In vitro recordings in mice hippocampi produced similar speeds (0.10 ± 0.03 m/s) and field amplitudes (2.5–5 mV/mm), and by applying a blocking field, the propagation speed was greatly reduced. Finally, osmolarity experiments confirmed the model's prediction that cell-to-cell distance inversely affects propagation speed. Together, these results show that despite their weak amplitude, electric fields can be solely responsible for spike propagation at ∼0.1 m/s. This phenomenon could be important to explain the slow propagation of epileptic activity and other normal propagations at similar speeds. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Neural activity (waves or spikes) can propagate using well documented mechanisms such as synaptic transmission, gap junctions, or diffusion. However, the purpose of this paper is to provide an explanation for experimental data showing that neural signals can propagate by means other than synaptic

  8. Understanding the brain by controlling neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Krug, Kristine; Salzman, C. Daniel; Waddell, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Causal methods to interrogate brain function have been employed since the advent of modern neuroscience in the nineteenth century. Initially, randomly placed electrodes and stimulation of parts of the living brain were used to localize specific functions to these areas. Recent technical developments have rejuvenated this approach by providing more precise tools to dissect the neural circuits underlying behaviour, perception and cognition. Carefully controlled behavioural experiments have been combined with electrical devices, targeted genetically encoded tools and neurochemical approaches to manipulate information processing in the brain. The ability to control brain activity in these ways not only deepens our understanding of brain function but also provides new avenues for clinical intervention, particularly in conditions where brain processing has gone awry. PMID:26240417

  9. An Activity for Demonstrating the Concept of a Neural Circuit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kreiner, David S.

    2012-01-01

    College students in two sections of a general psychology course participated in a demonstration of a simple neural circuit. The activity was based on a neural circuit that Jeffress proposed for localizing sounds. Students in one section responded to a questionnaire prior to participating in the activity, while students in the other section…

  10. Well-being and affective style: neural substrates and biobehavioural correlates.

    PubMed

    Davidson, Richard J

    2004-09-29

    One of the most salient features of emotion is the pronounced variability among individuals in their reactions to emotional incentives and in their dispositional mood. Collectively, these individual differences have been described as affective style. Recent research has begun to dissect the constituents of affective style. The search for these components is guided by the neural systems that instantiate emotion and emotion regulation. In this article, this body of research and theory is applied specifically to positive affect and well-being. The central substrates and peripheral biological correlates of well-being are described. A resilient affective style is associated with high levels of left prefrontal activation, effective modulation of activation in the amygdala and fast recovery in response to negative and stressful events. In peripheral biology, these central patterns are associated with lower levels of basal cortisol and with higher levels of antibody titres to influenza vaccine. The article concludes with a consideration of whether these patterns of central and peripheral biology can be modified by training and shifted toward a more salubrious direction. PMID:15347531

  11. Well-being and affective style: neural substrates and biobehavioural correlates.

    PubMed Central

    Davidson, Richard J

    2004-01-01

    One of the most salient features of emotion is the pronounced variability among individuals in their reactions to emotional incentives and in their dispositional mood. Collectively, these individual differences have been described as affective style. Recent research has begun to dissect the constituents of affective style. The search for these components is guided by the neural systems that instantiate emotion and emotion regulation. In this article, this body of research and theory is applied specifically to positive affect and well-being. The central substrates and peripheral biological correlates of well-being are described. A resilient affective style is associated with high levels of left prefrontal activation, effective modulation of activation in the amygdala and fast recovery in response to negative and stressful events. In peripheral biology, these central patterns are associated with lower levels of basal cortisol and with higher levels of antibody titres to influenza vaccine. The article concludes with a consideration of whether these patterns of central and peripheral biology can be modified by training and shifted toward a more salubrious direction. PMID:15347531

  12. Abnormal neural processing during emotional salience attribution of affective asymmetry in patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Lee, Seon-Koo; Chun, Ji Won; Lee, Jung Suk; Park, Hae-Jeong; Jung, Young-Chul; Seok, Jeong-Ho; Kim, Jae-Jin

    2014-01-01

    Aberrant emotional salience attribution has been reported to be an important clinical feature in patients with schizophrenia. Real life stimuli that incorporate both positive and negative emotional traits lead to affective asymmetry such as negativity bias and positivity offset. In this study, we investigated the neural correlates of emotional salience attribution in patients with schizophrenia when affective asymmetry was processed. Fifteen patients with schizophrenia and 14 healthy controls were scanned using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while performing an emotion judgment task in which two pictures were juxtaposed. The task consisted of responding to affective asymmetry condition (ambivalent and neutral) and affective symmetry conditions (positive and negative), and group comparisons were performed for each condition. Significantly higher activity in the medial prefrontal cortex and inferior frontal gyrus was observed for the ambivalent condition than for the other conditions in controls, but not in patients. Compared with controls, patients showed decreased activities in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, insula, and putamen for the ambivalent condition, but no changes were observed for the neutral condition. Multiple prefrontal hypoactivities during salience attribution of negativity bias in schizophrenia may underlie deficits in the integrative processing of emotional information. Regional abnormalities in the salience network may be the basis of defective emotional salience attribution in schizophrenia, which is likely involved in symptom formation and social dysfunction.

  13. The sound of emotions-Towards a unifying neural network perspective of affective sound processing.

    PubMed

    Frühholz, Sascha; Trost, Wiebke; Kotz, Sonja A

    2016-09-01

    Affective sounds are an integral part of the natural and social environment that shape and influence behavior across a multitude of species. In human primates, these affective sounds span a repertoire of environmental and human sounds when we vocalize or produce music. In terms of neural processing, cortical and subcortical brain areas constitute a distributed network that supports our listening experience to these affective sounds. Taking an exhaustive cross-domain view, we accordingly suggest a common neural network that facilitates the decoding of the emotional meaning from a wide source of sounds rather than a traditional view that postulates distinct neural systems for specific affective sound types. This new integrative neural network view unifies the decoding of affective valence in sounds, and ascribes differential as well as complementary functional roles to specific nodes within a common neural network. It also highlights the importance of an extended brain network beyond the central limbic and auditory brain systems engaged in the processing of affective sounds.

  14. The sound of emotions-Towards a unifying neural network perspective of affective sound processing.

    PubMed

    Frühholz, Sascha; Trost, Wiebke; Kotz, Sonja A

    2016-09-01

    Affective sounds are an integral part of the natural and social environment that shape and influence behavior across a multitude of species. In human primates, these affective sounds span a repertoire of environmental and human sounds when we vocalize or produce music. In terms of neural processing, cortical and subcortical brain areas constitute a distributed network that supports our listening experience to these affective sounds. Taking an exhaustive cross-domain view, we accordingly suggest a common neural network that facilitates the decoding of the emotional meaning from a wide source of sounds rather than a traditional view that postulates distinct neural systems for specific affective sound types. This new integrative neural network view unifies the decoding of affective valence in sounds, and ascribes differential as well as complementary functional roles to specific nodes within a common neural network. It also highlights the importance of an extended brain network beyond the central limbic and auditory brain systems engaged in the processing of affective sounds. PMID:27189782

  15. Healthy Adolescents' Neural Response to Reward: Associations with Puberty, Positive Affect, and Depressive Symptoms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forbes, Erika E.; Ryan, Neal D.; Phillips, Mary L.; Manuck, Stephen B.; Worthman, Carol M.; Moyles, Donna L.; Tarr, Jill A.; Sciarrillo, Samantha R.; Dahl, Ronald E.

    2010-01-01

    Objective: Changes in reward-related behavior are an important component of normal adolescent affective development. Understanding the neural underpinnings of these normative changes creates a foundation for investigating adolescence as a period of vulnerability to affective disorders, substance use disorders, and health problems. Studies of…

  16. Neural network with formed dynamics of activity

    SciTech Connect

    Dunin-Barkovskii, V.L.; Osovets, N.B.

    1995-03-01

    The problem of developing a neural network with a given pattern of the state sequence is considered. A neural network structure and an algorithm, of forming its bond matrix which lead to an approximate but robust solution of the problem are proposed and discussed. Limiting characteristics of the serviceability of the proposed structure are studied. Various methods of visualizing dynamic processes in a neural network are compared. Possible applications of the results obtained for interpretation of neurophysiological data and in neuroinformatics systems are discussed.

  17. Graphene microelectrode arrays for neural activity detection.

    PubMed

    Du, Xiaowei; Wu, Lei; Cheng, Ji; Huang, Shanluo; Cai, Qi; Jin, Qinghui; Zhao, Jianlong

    2015-09-01

    We demonstrate a method to fabricate graphene microelectrode arrays (MEAs) using a simple and inexpensive method to solve the problem of opaque electrode positions in traditional MEAs, while keeping good biocompatibility. To study the interface differences between graphene-electrolyte and gold-electrolyte, graphene and gold electrodes with a large area were fabricated. According to the simulation results of electrochemical impedances, the gold-electrolyte interface can be described as a classical double-layer structure, while the graphene-electrolyte interface can be explained by a modified double-layer theory. Furthermore, using graphene MEAs, we detected the neural activities of neurons dissociated from Wistar rats (embryonic day 18). The signal-to-noise ratio of the detected signal was 10.31 ± 1.2, which is comparable to those of MEAs made with other materials. The long-term stability of the MEAs is demonstrated by comparing differences in Bode diagrams taken before and after cell culturing. PMID:25712492

  18. NATAS: neural activity trace aware saliency.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Guokang; Wang, Qi; Yuan, Yuan

    2014-07-01

    Saliency detection has raised much interest in computer vision recently. Many visual saliency models have been developed for individual images, video clips, and image pairs. However, image sequence, one most general occasion in the real world, is not explored yet. A general image sequence is different from video clips whose temporal continuity is maintained and image pairs where common objects exist. It might contain some similar low-level properties while completely distinct contents. Traditional saliency detection methods will fail on these general sequences. Based on this consideration, this paper investigates the shortcomings of the classical saliency detection methods, which significantly limit their advantages: 1) inability to capture the natural connections among sequential images, 2) over-reliance on motion cues, and 3) restriction to image pairs/videos with common objects. In order to address these problems, we propose a framework that performs the following contributions: 1) construct an image data set as benchmark through a rigorously designed behavioral experiment, 2) propose a neural activity trace aware saliency model to capture the general connections among images, and 3) design a novel measure to handle the low-level clues contained among sequential images. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed saliency model is associated with a tremendous advancement compared with traditional methods when dealing with the general image sequence.

  19. Large-scale multielectrode recording and stimulation of neural activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sher, A.; Chichilnisky, E. J.; Dabrowski, W.; Grillo, A. A.; Grivich, M.; Gunning, D.; Hottowy, P.; Kachiguine, S.; Litke, A. M.; Mathieson, K.; Petrusca, D.

    2007-09-01

    Large circuits of neurons are employed by the brain to encode and process information. How this encoding and processing is carried out is one of the central questions in neuroscience. Since individual neurons communicate with each other through electrical signals (action potentials), the recording of neural activity with arrays of extracellular electrodes is uniquely suited for the investigation of this question. Such recordings provide the combination of the best spatial (individual neurons) and temporal (individual action-potentials) resolutions compared to other large-scale imaging methods. Electrical stimulation of neural activity in turn has two very important applications: it enhances our understanding of neural circuits by allowing active interactions with them, and it is a basis for a large variety of neural prosthetic devices. Until recently, the state-of-the-art in neural activity recording systems consisted of several dozen electrodes with inter-electrode spacing ranging from tens to hundreds of microns. Using silicon microstrip detector expertise acquired in the field of high-energy physics, we created a unique neural activity readout and stimulation framework that consists of high-density electrode arrays, multi-channel custom-designed integrated circuits, a data acquisition system, and data-processing software. Using this framework we developed a number of neural readout and stimulation systems: (1) a 512-electrode system for recording the simultaneous activity of as many as hundreds of neurons, (2) a 61-electrode system for electrical stimulation and readout of neural activity in retinas and brain-tissue slices, and (3) a system with telemetry capabilities for recording neural activity in the intact brain of awake, naturally behaving animals. We will report on these systems, their various applications to the field of neurobiology, and novel scientific results obtained with some of them. We will also outline future directions.

  20. Mesoscopic Patterns of Neural Activity Support Songbird Cortical Sequences

    PubMed Central

    Guitchounts, Grigori; Velho, Tarciso; Lois, Carlos; Gardner, Timothy J.

    2015-01-01

    Time-locked sequences of neural activity can be found throughout the vertebrate forebrain in various species and behavioral contexts. From “time cells” in the hippocampus of rodents to cortical activity controlling movement, temporal sequence generation is integral to many forms of learned behavior. However, the mechanisms underlying sequence generation are not well known. Here, we describe a spatial and temporal organization of the songbird premotor cortical microcircuit that supports sparse sequences of neural activity. Multi-channel electrophysiology and calcium imaging reveal that neural activity in premotor cortex is correlated with a length scale of 100 µm. Within this length scale, basal-ganglia–projecting excitatory neurons, on average, fire at a specific phase of a local 30 Hz network rhythm. These results show that premotor cortical activity is inhomogeneous in time and space, and that a mesoscopic dynamical pattern underlies the generation of the neural sequences controlling song. PMID:26039895

  1. Misexpression of BRE gene in the developing chick neural tube affects neurulation and somitogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guang; Li, Yan; Wang, Xiao-Yu; Chuai, Manli; Yeuk-Hon Chan, John; Lei, Jian; Münsterberg, Andrea; Lee, Kenneth Ka Ho; Yang, Xuesong

    2015-01-01

    The brain and reproductive expression (BRE) gene is expressed in numerous adult tissues and especially in the nervous and reproductive systems. However, little is known about BRE expression in the developing embryo or about its role in embryonic development. In this study, we used in situ hybridization to reveal the spatiotemporal expression pattern for BRE in chick embryo during development. To determine the importance of BRE in neurogenesis, we overexpressed BRE and also silenced BRE expression specifically in the neural tube. We established that overexpressing BRE in the neural tube indirectly accelerated Pax7+ somite development and directly increased HNK-1+ neural crest cell (NCC) migration and TuJ-1+ neurite outgrowth. These altered morphogenetic processes were associated with changes in the cell cycle of NCCs and neural tube cells. The inverse effect was obtained when BRE expression was silenced in the neural tube. We also determined that BMP4 and Shh expression in the neural tube was affected by misexpression of BRE. This provides a possible mechanism for how altering BRE expression was able to affect somitogenesis, neurogenesis, and NCC migration. In summary, our results demonstrate that BRE plays an important role in regulating neurogenesis and indirectly somite differentiation during early chick embryo development. PMID:25568339

  2. A PTK7/Ror2 Co-Receptor Complex Affects Xenopus Neural Crest Migration

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Hanna; Rollwitz, Erik; Borchers, Annette

    2015-01-01

    Neural crest cells are a highly migratory pluripotent cell population that generates a wide array of different cell types and failure in their migration can result in severe birth defects and malformation syndromes. Neural crest migration is controlled by various means including chemotaxis, repellent guidance cues and cell-cell interaction. Non-canonical Wnt PCP (planar cell polarity) signaling has previously been shown to control cell-contact mediated neural crest cell guidance. PTK7 (protein tyrosine kinase 7) is a transmembrane pseudokinase and a known regulator of Wnt/PCP signaling, which is expressed in Xenopus neural crest cells and required for their migration. PTK7 functions as a Wnt co-receptor; however, it remains unclear by which means PTK7 affects neural crest migration. Expressing fluorescently labeled proteins in Xenopus neural crest cells we find that PTK7 co-localizes with the Ror2 Wnt-receptor. Further, co-immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrate that PTK7 interacts with Ror2. The PTK7/Ror2 interaction is likely relevant for neural crest migration, because Ror2 expression can rescue the PTK7 loss of function migration defect. Live cell imaging of explanted neural crest cells shows that PTK7 loss of function affects the formation of cell protrusions as well as cell motility. Co-expression of Ror2 can rescue these defects. In vivo analysis demonstrates that a kinase dead Ror2 mutant cannot rescue PTK7 loss of function. Thus, our data suggest that Ror2 can substitute for PTK7 and that the signaling function of its kinase domain is required for this effect. PMID:26680417

  3. Associations between maternal negative affect and adolescent's neural response to peer evaluation.

    PubMed

    Tan, Patricia Z; Lee, Kyung Hwa; Dahl, Ronald E; Nelson, Eric E; Stroud, Laura J; Siegle, Greg J; Morgan, Judith K; Silk, Jennifer S

    2014-04-01

    Parenting is often implicated as a potential source of individual differences in youths' emotional information processing. The present study examined whether parental affect is related to an important aspect of adolescent emotional development, response to peer evaluation. Specifically, we examined relations between maternal negative affect, observed during parent-adolescent discussion of an adolescent-nominated concern with which s/he wants parental support, and adolescent neural responses to peer evaluation in 40 emotionally healthy and depressed adolescents. We focused on a network of ventral brain regions involved in affective processing of social information: the amygdala, anterior insula, nucleus accumbens, and subgenual anterior cingulate, as well as the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex. Maternal negative affect was not associated with adolescent neural response to peer rejection. However, longer durations of maternal negative affect were associated with decreased responsivity to peer acceptance in the amygdala, left anterior insula, subgenual anterior cingulate, and left nucleus accumbens. These findings provide some of the first evidence that maternal negative affect is associated with adolescents' neural processing of social rewards. Findings also suggest that maternal negative affect could contribute to alterations in affective processing, specifically, dampening the saliency and/or reward of peer interactions during adolescence.

  4. Neural progenitor cells regulate microglia functions and activity.

    PubMed

    Mosher, Kira I; Andres, Robert H; Fukuhara, Takeshi; Bieri, Gregor; Hasegawa-Moriyama, Maiko; He, Yingbo; Guzman, Raphael; Wyss-Coray, Tony

    2012-11-01

    We found mouse neural progenitor cells (NPCs) to have a secretory protein profile distinct from other brain cells and to modulate microglial activation, proliferation and phagocytosis. NPC-derived vascular endothelial growth factor was necessary and sufficient to exert at least some of these effects in mice. Thus, neural precursor cells may not only be shaped by microglia, but also regulate microglia functions and activity.

  5. Technologies for imaging neural activity in large volumes.

    PubMed

    Ji, Na; Freeman, Jeremy; Smith, Spencer L

    2016-08-26

    Neural circuitry has evolved to form distributed networks that act dynamically across large volumes. Conventional microscopy collects data from individual planes and cannot sample circuitry across large volumes at the temporal resolution relevant to neural circuit function and behaviors. Here we review emerging technologies for rapid volume imaging of neural circuitry. We focus on two critical challenges: the inertia of optical systems, which limits image speed, and aberrations, which restrict the image volume. Optical sampling time must be long enough to ensure high-fidelity measurements, but optimized sampling strategies and point-spread function engineering can facilitate rapid volume imaging of neural activity within this constraint. We also discuss new computational strategies for processing and analyzing volume imaging data of increasing size and complexity. Together, optical and computational advances are providing a broader view of neural circuit dynamics and helping elucidate how brain regions work in concert to support behavior. PMID:27571194

  6. Neural Activity Reveals Preferences Without Choices

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Alec; Bernheim, B. Douglas; Camerer, Colin

    2014-01-01

    We investigate the feasibility of inferring the choices people would make (if given the opportunity) based on their neural responses to the pertinent prospects when they are not engaged in actual decision making. The ability to make such inferences is of potential value when choice data are unavailable, or limited in ways that render standard methods of estimating choice mappings problematic. We formulate prediction models relating choices to “non-choice” neural responses and use them to predict out-of-sample choices for new items and for new groups of individuals. The predictions are sufficiently accurate to establish the feasibility of our approach. PMID:25729468

  7. OCT detection of neural activity in American cockroach nervous system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorczyńska, Iwona; Wyszkowska, Joanna; Bukowska, Danuta; Ruminski, Daniel; Karnowski, Karol; Stankiewicz, Maria; Wojtkowski, Maciej

    2013-03-01

    We show results of a project which focuses on detection of activity in neural tissue with Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) methods. Experiments were performed in neural cords dissected from the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana L.). Functional OCT imaging was performed with ultrahigh resolution spectral / Fourier domain OCT system (axial resolution 2.5 μm). Electrical stimulation (voltage pulses) was applied to the sensory cercal nerve of the neural cord. Optical detection of functional activation of the sample was performed in the connective between the terminal abdominal ganglion and the fifth abdominal ganglion. Functional OCT data were collected over time with the OCT beam illuminating selected single point in the connectives (i.e. OCT M-scans were acquired). Phase changes of the OCT signal were analyzed to visualize occurrence of activation in the neural cord. Electrophysiology recordings (microelectrode method) were also performed as a reference method to demonstrate electrical response of the sample to stimulation.

  8. Active Sampling in Evolving Neural Networks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parisi, Domenico

    1997-01-01

    Comments on Raftopoulos article (PS 528 649) on facilitative effect of cognitive limitation in development and connectionist models. Argues that the use of neural networks within an "Artificial Life" perspective can more effectively contribute to the study of the role of cognitive limitations in development and their genetic basis than can using…

  9. Brain calculus: neural integration and persistent activity.

    PubMed

    McCormick, D A

    2001-02-01

    Tank and colleagues make in vivo cellular recordings from neurons in a "neural integrator" of the goldfish involved in maintaining eye position. In this circuit, "working" memory may be the result of persistent changes in the state of the local network.

  10. The Age of Cortical Neural Networks Affects Their Interactions with Magnetic Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Tay, Andy; Kunze, Anja; Jun, Dukwoo; Hoek, Eric; Di Carlo, Dino

    2016-07-01

    Despite increasing use of nanotechnology in neuroscience, the characterization of interactions between magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) and primary cortical neural networks remains underdeveloped. In particular, how the age of primary neural networks affects MNP uptake and endocytosis is critical when considering MNP-based therapies for age-related diseases. Here, primary cortical neural networks are cultured up to 4 weeks and with CCL11/eotaxin, an age-inducing chemokine, to create aged neural networks. As the neural networks are aged, their association with membrane-bound starch-coated ferromagnetic nanoparticles (fMNPs) increases while their endocytic mechanisms are impaired, resulting in reduced internalization of chitosan-coated fMNPs. The age of the neurons also negates the neuroprotective effects of chitosan coatings on fMNPs, attributing to decreased intracellular trafficking and increased colocalization of MNPs with lysosomes. These findings demonstrate the importance of age and developmental stage of primary neural cells when developing in vitro models for fMNP therapeutics targeting age-related diseases. PMID:27228954

  11. The Age of Cortical Neural Networks Affects Their Interactions with Magnetic Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Tay, Andy; Kunze, Anja; Jun, Dukwoo; Hoek, Eric; Di Carlo, Dino

    2016-07-01

    Despite increasing use of nanotechnology in neuroscience, the characterization of interactions between magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) and primary cortical neural networks remains underdeveloped. In particular, how the age of primary neural networks affects MNP uptake and endocytosis is critical when considering MNP-based therapies for age-related diseases. Here, primary cortical neural networks are cultured up to 4 weeks and with CCL11/eotaxin, an age-inducing chemokine, to create aged neural networks. As the neural networks are aged, their association with membrane-bound starch-coated ferromagnetic nanoparticles (fMNPs) increases while their endocytic mechanisms are impaired, resulting in reduced internalization of chitosan-coated fMNPs. The age of the neurons also negates the neuroprotective effects of chitosan coatings on fMNPs, attributing to decreased intracellular trafficking and increased colocalization of MNPs with lysosomes. These findings demonstrate the importance of age and developmental stage of primary neural cells when developing in vitro models for fMNP therapeutics targeting age-related diseases.

  12. Monitoring Neural Activity with Bioluminescence during Natural Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Naumann, Eva A.; Kampff, Adam R.; Prober, David A.; Schier, Alexander F.; Engert, Florian

    2010-01-01

    Existing techniques for monitoring neural activity in awake, freely behaving vertebrates are invasive and difficult to target to genetically identified neurons. Here we describe the use of bioluminescence to non-invasively monitor the activity of genetically specified neurons in freely behaving zebrafish. Transgenic fish expressing the Ca2+-sensitive photoprotein GFP-apoAequorin (GA) in most neurons generated large and fast bioluminescent signals related to neural activity, neuroluminescence, that could be recorded continuously for many days. To test the limits of this technique, GA was specifically targeted to the hypocretin-positive neurons of the hypothalamus. We found that neuroluminescence generated by this group of ~20 neurons was associated with periods of increased locomotor activity and identified two classes of neural activity corresponding to distinct swim latencies. Thus, our neuroluminescence assay can report, with high temporal resolution and sensitivity, the activity of small subsets of neurons during unrestrained behavior. PMID:20305645

  13. Neural mechanisms underlying the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces: a tentative model.

    PubMed

    Tsukiura, Takashi

    2012-01-01

    In our daily lives, we form some impressions of other people. Although those impressions are affected by many factors, face-based affective signals such as facial expression, facial attractiveness, or trustworthiness are important. Previous psychological studies have demonstrated the impact of facial impressions on remembering other people, but little is known about the neural mechanisms underlying this psychological process. The purpose of this article is to review recent functional MRI (fMRI) studies to investigate the effects of face-based affective signals including facial expression, facial attractiveness, and trustworthiness on memory for faces, and to propose a tentative concept for understanding this affective-cognitive interaction. On the basis of the aforementioned research, three brain regions are potentially involved in the processing of face-based affective signals. The first candidate is the amygdala, where activity is generally modulated by both affectively positive and negative signals from faces. Activity in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), as the second candidate, increases as a function of perceived positive signals from faces; whereas activity in the insular cortex, as the third candidate, reflects a function of face-based negative signals. In addition, neuroscientific studies have reported that the three regions are functionally connected to the memory-related hippocampal regions. These findings suggest that the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces could be modulated by interactions between the regions associated with the processing of face-based affective signals and the hippocampus as a memory-related region. PMID:22837740

  14. Neural mechanisms underlying the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces: a tentative model

    PubMed Central

    Tsukiura, Takashi

    2012-01-01

    In our daily lives, we form some impressions of other people. Although those impressions are affected by many factors, face-based affective signals such as facial expression, facial attractiveness, or trustworthiness are important. Previous psychological studies have demonstrated the impact of facial impressions on remembering other people, but little is known about the neural mechanisms underlying this psychological process. The purpose of this article is to review recent functional MRI (fMRI) studies to investigate the effects of face-based affective signals including facial expression, facial attractiveness, and trustworthiness on memory for faces, and to propose a tentative concept for understanding this affective-cognitive interaction. On the basis of the aforementioned research, three brain regions are potentially involved in the processing of face-based affective signals. The first candidate is the amygdala, where activity is generally modulated by both affectively positive and negative signals from faces. Activity in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), as the second candidate, increases as a function of perceived positive signals from faces; whereas activity in the insular cortex, as the third candidate, reflects a function of face-based negative signals. In addition, neuroscientific studies have reported that the three regions are functionally connected to the memory-related hippocampal regions. These findings suggest that the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces could be modulated by interactions between the regions associated with the processing of face-based affective signals and the hippocampus as a memory-related region. PMID:22837740

  15. Neural mechanisms underlying the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces: a tentative model.

    PubMed

    Tsukiura, Takashi

    2012-01-01

    In our daily lives, we form some impressions of other people. Although those impressions are affected by many factors, face-based affective signals such as facial expression, facial attractiveness, or trustworthiness are important. Previous psychological studies have demonstrated the impact of facial impressions on remembering other people, but little is known about the neural mechanisms underlying this psychological process. The purpose of this article is to review recent functional MRI (fMRI) studies to investigate the effects of face-based affective signals including facial expression, facial attractiveness, and trustworthiness on memory for faces, and to propose a tentative concept for understanding this affective-cognitive interaction. On the basis of the aforementioned research, three brain regions are potentially involved in the processing of face-based affective signals. The first candidate is the amygdala, where activity is generally modulated by both affectively positive and negative signals from faces. Activity in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), as the second candidate, increases as a function of perceived positive signals from faces; whereas activity in the insular cortex, as the third candidate, reflects a function of face-based negative signals. In addition, neuroscientific studies have reported that the three regions are functionally connected to the memory-related hippocampal regions. These findings suggest that the effects of face-based affective signals on memory for faces could be modulated by interactions between the regions associated with the processing of face-based affective signals and the hippocampus as a memory-related region.

  16. Lag Synchronization of Switched Neural Networks via Neural Activation Function and Applications in Image Encryption.

    PubMed

    Wen, Shiping; Zeng, Zhigang; Huang, Tingwen; Meng, Qinggang; Yao, Wei

    2015-07-01

    This paper investigates the problem of global exponential lag synchronization of a class of switched neural networks with time-varying delays via neural activation function and applications in image encryption. The controller is dependent on the output of the system in the case of packed circuits, since it is hard to measure the inner state of the circuits. Thus, it is critical to design the controller based on the neuron activation function. Comparing the results, in this paper, with the existing ones shows that we improve and generalize the results derived in the previous literature. Several examples are also given to illustrate the effectiveness and potential applications in image encryption.

  17. Neural net forecasting for geomagnetic activity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hernandez, J. V.; Tajima, T.; Horton, W.

    1993-01-01

    We use neural nets to construct nonlinear models to forecast the AL index given solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) data. We follow two approaches: (1) the state space reconstruction approach, which is a nonlinear generalization of autoregressive-moving average models (ARMA) and (2) the nonlinear filter approach, which reduces to a moving average model (MA) in the linear limit. The database used here is that of Bargatze et al. (1985).

  18. Neurometabolic coupling between neural activity, glucose, and lactate in activated visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Li, Baowang; Freeman, Ralph D

    2015-11-01

    Neural activity is closely coupled with energy metabolism but details of the association remain to be identified. One basic area involves the relationships between neural activity and the main supportive substrates of glucose and lactate. This is of fundamental significance for the interpretation of non-invasive neural imaging. Here, we use microelectrodes with high spatial and temporal resolution to determine simultaneous co-localized changes in glucose, lactate, and neural activity during visual activation of the cerebral cortex in the cat. Tissue glucose and lactate concentration levels are measured with electrochemical microelectrodes while neural spiking activity and local field potentials are sampled by a microelectrode. These measurements are performed simultaneously while neurons are activated by visual stimuli of different contrast levels, orientations, and sizes. We find immediate decreases in tissue glucose concentration and simultaneous increases in lactate during neural activation. Both glucose and lactate signals return to their baseline levels instantly as neurons cease firing. No sustained changes or initial dips in glucose or lactate signals are elicited by visual stimulation. However, co-localized measurements of cerebral blood flow and neural activity demonstrate a clear delay in the cerebral blood flow signal such that it does not correlate temporally with the neural response. These results provide direct real-time evidence regarding the coupling between co-localized energy metabolism and neural activity during physiological stimulation. They are also relevant to a current question regarding the role of lactate in energy metabolism in the brain during neural activation. Dynamic changes in energy metabolites can be measured directly with high spatial and temporal resolution by use of enzyme-based microelectrodes. Here, to examine neuro-metabolic coupling during brain activation, we use combined microelectrodes to simultaneously measure

  19. Neural correlates of dueling affective reactions to win–win choices

    PubMed Central

    Shenhav, Amitai; Buckner, Randy L.

    2014-01-01

    Win–win choices cause anxiety, often more so than decisions lacking the opportunity for a highly desired outcome. These anxious feelings can paradoxically co-occur with positive feelings, raising important implications for individual decision styles and general well-being. Across three studies, people chose between products that varied in personal value. Participants reported feeling most positive and most anxious when choosing between similarly high-valued products. Behavioral and neural results suggested that this paradoxical experience resulted from parallel evaluations of the expected outcome (inducing positive affect) versus the cost of choosing a response (inducing anxiety). Positive feelings were reduced when there was no high-value option, and anxiety was reduced when only one option was highly valued. Dissociable regions within the striatum and the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) tracked these dueling affective reactions during choice. Ventral regions, associated with stimulus valuation, tracked positive feelings and the value of the best item. Dorsal regions, associated with response valuation, tracked anxiety. In addition to tracking anxiety, the dorsal mPFC was associated with conflict during the current choice, and activity levels across individual items predicted whether that choice would later be reversed during an unexpected reevaluation phase. By revealing how win–win decisions elicit responses in dissociable brain systems, these results help resolve the paradox of win–win choices. They also provide insight into behaviors that are associated with these two forms of affect, such as why we are pulled toward good options but may still decide to delay or avoid choosing among them. PMID:25024178

  20. Optical imaging of neural and hemodynamic brain activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schei, Jennifer Lynn

    Optical imaging technologies can be used to record neural and hemodynamic activity. Neural activity elicits physiological changes that alter the optical tissue properties. Specifically, changes in polarized light are concomitant with neural depolarization. We measured polarization changes from an isolated lobster nerve during action potential propagation using both reflected and transmitted light. In transmission mode, polarization changes were largest throughout the center of the nerve, suggesting that most of the optical signal arose from the inner nerve bundle. In reflection mode, polarization changes were largest near the edges, suggesting that most of the optical signal arose from the outer sheath. To overcome irregular cell orientation found in the brain, we measured polarization changes from a nerve tied in a knot. Our results show that neural activation produces polarization changes that can be imaged even without regular cell orientations. Neural activation expends energy resources and elicits metabolic delivery through blood vessel dilation, increasing blood flow and volume. We used spectroscopic imaging techniques combined with electrophysiological measurements to record evoked neural and hemodynamic responses from the auditory cortex of the rat. By using implantable optics, we measured responses across natural wake and sleep states, as well as responses following different amounts of sleep deprivation. During quiet sleep, evoked metabolic responses were larger compared to wake, perhaps because blood vessels were more compliant. When animals were sleep deprived, evoked hemodynamic responses were smaller following longer periods of deprivation. These results suggest that prolonged neural activity through sleep deprivation may diminish vascular compliance as indicated by the blunted vascular response. Subsequent sleep may allow vessels to relax, restoring their ability to deliver blood. These results also suggest that severe sleep deprivation or chronic

  1. Can Neural Activity Propagate by Endogenous Electrical Field?

    PubMed

    Qiu, Chen; Shivacharan, Rajat S; Zhang, Mingming; Durand, Dominique M

    2015-12-01

    It is widely accepted that synaptic transmissions and gap junctions are the major governing mechanisms for signal traveling in the neural system. Yet, a group of neural waves, either physiological or pathological, share the same speed of ∼0.1 m/s without synaptic transmission or gap junctions, and this speed is not consistent with axonal conduction or ionic diffusion. The only explanation left is an electrical field effect. We tested the hypothesis that endogenous electric fields are sufficient to explain the propagation with in silico and in vitro experiments. Simulation results show that field effects alone can indeed mediate propagation across layers of neurons with speeds of 0.12 ± 0.09 m/s with pathological kinetics, and 0.11 ± 0.03 m/s with physiologic kinetics, both generating weak field amplitudes of ∼2-6 mV/mm. Further, the model predicted that propagation speed values are inversely proportional to the cell-to-cell distances, but do not significantly change with extracellular resistivity, membrane capacitance, or membrane resistance. In vitro recordings in mice hippocampi produced similar speeds (0.10 ± 0.03 m/s) and field amplitudes (2.5-5 mV/mm), and by applying a blocking field, the propagation speed was greatly reduced. Finally, osmolarity experiments confirmed the model's prediction that cell-to-cell distance inversely affects propagation speed. Together, these results show that despite their weak amplitude, electric fields can be solely responsible for spike propagation at ∼0.1 m/s. This phenomenon could be important to explain the slow propagation of epileptic activity and other normal propagations at similar speeds.

  2. A neural networks study of quinone compounds with trypanocidal activity.

    PubMed

    de Molfetta, Fábio Alberto; Angelotti, Wagner Fernando Delfino; Romero, Roseli Aparecida Francelin; Montanari, Carlos Alberto; da Silva, Albérico Borges Ferreira

    2008-10-01

    This work investigates neural network models for predicting the trypanocidal activity of 28 quinone compounds. Artificial neural networks (ANN), such as multilayer perceptrons (MLP) and Kohonen models, were employed with the aim of modeling the nonlinear relationship between quantum and molecular descriptors and trypanocidal activity. The calculated descriptors and the principal components were used as input to train neural network models to verify the behavior of the nets. The best model for both network models (MLP and Kohonen) was obtained with four descriptors as input. The descriptors were T5 (torsion angle), QTS1 (sum of absolute values of the atomic charges), VOLS2 (volume of the substituent at region B) and HOMO-1 (energy of the molecular orbital below HOMO). These descriptors provide information on the kind of interaction that occurs between the compounds and the biological receptor. Both neural network models used here can predict the trypanocidal activity of the quinone compounds with good agreement, with low errors in the testing set and a high correctness rate. Thanks to the nonlinear model obtained from the neural network models, we can conclude that electronic and structural properties are important factors in the interaction between quinone compounds that exhibit trypanocidal activity and their biological receptors. The final ANN models should be useful in the design of novel trypanocidal quinones having improved potency.

  3. Social status modulates neural activity in the mentalizing network

    PubMed Central

    Muscatell, Keely A.; Morelli, Sylvia A.; Falk, Emily B.; Way, Baldwin M.; Pfeifer, Jennifer H.; Galinsky, Adam D.; Lieberman, Matthew D.; Dapretto, Mirella; Eisenberger, Naomi I.

    2013-01-01

    The current research explored the neural mechanisms linking social status to perceptions of the social world. Two fMRI studies provide converging evidence that individuals lower in social status are more likely to engage neural circuitry often involved in ‘mentalizing’ or thinking about others' thoughts and feelings. Study 1 found that college students' perception of their social status in the university community was related to neural activity in the mentalizing network (e.g., DMPFC, MPFC, precuneus/PCC) while encoding social information, with lower social status predicting greater neural activity in this network. Study 2 demonstrated that socioeconomic status, an objective indicator of global standing, predicted adolescents' neural activity during the processing of threatening faces, with individuals lower in social status displaying greater activity in the DMPFC, previously associated with mentalizing, and the amygdala, previously associated with emotion/salience processing. These studies demonstrate that social status is fundamentally and neurocognitively linked to how people process and navigate their social worlds. PMID:22289808

  4. Internal models for interpreting neural population activity during sensorimotor control.

    PubMed

    Golub, Matthew D; Yu, Byron M; Chase, Steven M

    2015-01-01

    To successfully guide limb movements, the brain takes in sensory information about the limb, internally tracks the state of the limb, and produces appropriate motor commands. It is widely believed that this process uses an internal model, which describes our prior beliefs about how the limb responds to motor commands. Here, we leveraged a brain-machine interface (BMI) paradigm in rhesus monkeys and novel statistical analyses of neural population activity to gain insight into moment-by-moment internal model computations. We discovered that a mismatch between subjects' internal models and the actual BMI explains roughly 65% of movement errors, as well as long-standing deficiencies in BMI speed control. We then used the internal models to characterize how the neural population activity changes during BMI learning. More broadly, this work provides an approach for interpreting neural population activity in the context of how prior beliefs guide the transformation of sensory input to motor output.

  5. A Sensitive and Specific Neural Signature for Picture-Induced Negative Affect

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Luke J.; Gianaros, Peter J.; Manuck, Stephen B.; Krishnan, Anjali; Wager, Tor D.

    2015-01-01

    Neuroimaging has identified many correlates of emotion but has not yet yielded brain representations predictive of the intensity of emotional experiences in individuals. We used machine learning to identify a sensitive and specific signature of emotional responses to aversive images. This signature predicted the intensity of negative emotion in individual participants in cross validation (n =121) and test (n = 61) samples (high–low emotion = 93.5% accuracy). It was unresponsive to physical pain (emotion–pain = 92% discriminative accuracy), demonstrating that it is not a representation of generalized arousal or salience. The signature was comprised of mesoscale patterns spanning multiple cortical and subcortical systems, with no single system necessary or sufficient for predicting experience. Furthermore, it was not reducible to activity in traditional “emotion-related” regions (e.g., amygdala, insula) or resting-state networks (e.g., “salience,” “default mode”). Overall, this work identifies differentiable neural components of negative emotion and pain, providing a basis for new, brain-based taxonomies of affective processes. PMID:26098873

  6. A Sensitive and Specific Neural Signature for Picture-Induced Negative Affect.

    PubMed

    Chang, Luke J; Gianaros, Peter J; Manuck, Stephen B; Krishnan, Anjali; Wager, Tor D

    2015-06-01

    Neuroimaging has identified many correlates of emotion but has not yet yielded brain representations predictive of the intensity of emotional experiences in individuals. We used machine learning to identify a sensitive and specific signature of emotional responses to aversive images. This signature predicted the intensity of negative emotion in individual participants in cross validation (n =121) and test (n = 61) samples (high-low emotion = 93.5% accuracy). It was unresponsive to physical pain (emotion-pain = 92% discriminative accuracy), demonstrating that it is not a representation of generalized arousal or salience. The signature was comprised of mesoscale patterns spanning multiple cortical and subcortical systems, with no single system necessary or sufficient for predicting experience. Furthermore, it was not reducible to activity in traditional "emotion-related" regions (e.g., amygdala, insula) or resting-state networks (e.g., "salience," "default mode"). Overall, this work identifies differentiable neural components of negative emotion and pain, providing a basis for new, brain-based taxonomies of affective processes. PMID:26098873

  7. Integration of active devices on smart polymers for neural interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avendano-Bolivar, Adrian Emmanuel

    The increasing ability to ever more precisely identify and measure neural interactions and other phenomena in the central and peripheral nervous systems is revolutionizing our understanding of the human body and brain. To facilitate further understanding, more sophisticated neural devices, perhaps using microelectronics processing, must be fabricated. Materials often used in these neural interfaces, while compatible with these fabrication processes, are not optimized for long-term use in the body and are often orders of magnitude stiffer than the tissue with which they interact. Using the smart polymer substrates described in this work, suitability for processing as well as chronic implantation is demonstrated. We explore how to integrate reliable circuitry onto these flexible, biocompatible substrates that can withstand the aggressive environment of the body. To increase the capabilities of these devices beyond individual channel sensing and stimulation, active electronics must also be included onto our systems. In order to add this functionality to these substrates and explore the limits of these devices, we developed a process to fabricate single organic thin film transistors with mobilities up to 0.4 cm2/Vs and threshold voltages close to 0V. A process for fabricating organic light emitting diodes on flexible substrates is also addressed. We have set a foundation and demonstrated initial feasibility for integrating multiple transistors onto thin-film flexible devices to create new applications, such as matrix addressable functionalized electrodes and organic light emitting diodes. A brief description on how to integrate waveguides for their use in optogenetics is addressed. We have built understanding about device constraints on mechanical, electrical and in vivo reliability and how various conditions affect the electronics' lifetime. We use a bi-layer gate dielectric using an inorganic material such as HfO 2 combined with organic Parylene-c. A study of

  8. Multisynaptic activity in a pyramidal neuron model and neural code.

    PubMed

    Ventriglia, Francesco; Di Maio, Vito

    2006-01-01

    The highly irregular firing of mammalian cortical pyramidal neurons is one of the most striking observation of the brain activity. This result affects greatly the discussion on the neural code, i.e. how the brain codes information transmitted along the different cortical stages. In fact it seems to be in favor of one of the two main hypotheses about this issue, named the rate code. But the supporters of the contrasting hypothesis, the temporal code, consider this evidence inconclusive. We discuss here a leaky integrate-and-fire model of a hippocampal pyramidal neuron intended to be biologically sound to investigate the genesis of the irregular pyramidal firing and to give useful information about the coding problem. To this aim, the complete set of excitatory and inhibitory synapses impinging on such a neuron has been taken into account. The firing activity of the neuron model has been studied by computer simulation both in basic conditions and allowing brief periods of over-stimulation in specific regions of its synaptic constellation. Our results show neuronal firing conditions similar to those observed in experimental investigations on pyramidal cortical neurons. In particular, the variation coefficient (CV) computed from the inter-spike intervals (ISIs) in our simulations for basic conditions is close to the unity as that computed from experimental data. Our simulation shows also different behaviors in firing sequences for different frequencies of stimulation. PMID:16870323

  9. Neural systems supporting cognitive-affective interactions in adolescence: the role of puberty and implications for affective disorders

    PubMed Central

    Ladouceur, Cecile D.

    2012-01-01

    Evidence from longitudinal studies suggests that adolescence may represent a period of vulnerability that, in the context of adverse events, could contribute to developmental trajectories toward behavioral and emotional health problems, including affective disorders. Adolescence is also a sensitive period for the development of neural systems supporting cognitive-affective processes, which have been implicated in the pathophysiology of affective disorders such as anxiety and mood disorders. In particular, the onset of puberty brings about a cascade of physical, hormonal, psychological, and social changes that contribute in complex ways to the development of these systems. This article provides a brief overview of neuroimaging research pertaining to the development of cognitive-affective processes in adolescence. It also includes a brief review of evidence from animal and human neuroimaging studies suggesting that sex steroids influence the connectivity between prefrontal cortical and subcortical limbic regions in ways that contribute to increased reactivity to emotionally salient stimuli. We integrate these findings in the context of a developmental affective neuroscience framework suggesting that the impact of rising levels of sex steroids during puberty on fronto-limbic connectivity may be even greater in the context of protracted development of prefrontal cortical regions in adolescence. We conclude by discussing the implications of these findings for future research aimed at identifying neurodevelopmental markers of risk for future onset of affective disorders. PMID:22969712

  10. Encapsulating Elastically Stretchable Neural Interfaces: Yield, Resolution, and Recording/Stimulation of Neural Activity

    PubMed Central

    Morrison, Barclay; Goletiani, Cezar; Yu, Zhe; Wagner, Sigurd

    2013-01-01

    A high resolution elastically stretchable microelectrode array (SMEA) to interface with neural tissue is described. The SMEA consists of an elastomeric substrate, such as poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS), elastically stretchable gold conductors, and an electrically insulating encapsulating layer in which contact holes are opened. We demonstrate the feasibility of producing contact holes with 40 µm × 40 µm openings, show why the adhesion of the encapsulation layer to the underlying silicone substrate is weakened during contact hole fabrication, and provide remedies. These improvements result in greatly increased fabrication yield and reproducibility. An SMEA with 28 microelectrodes was fabricated. The contact holes (100 µm × 100 µm) in the encapsulation layer are only ~10% the size of the previous generation, allowing a larger number of microelectrodes per unit area, thus affording the capability to interface with a smaller neural population per electrode. This new SMEA is used to record spontaneous and evoked activity in organotypic hippocampal tissue slices at 0% strain before stretching, at 5 % and 10 % equibiaxial strain, and again at 0% strain after relaxation. The noise of the recordings increases with increasing strain. The frequency of spontaneous neural activity also increases when the SMEA is stretched. Upon relaxation, the noise returns to pre-stretch levels, while the frequency of neural activity remains elevated. Stimulus-response curves at each strain level are measured. The SMEA shows excellent biocompatibility for at least two weeks. PMID:24093006

  11. The neural mechanisms of affect infusion in social economic decision-making: a mediating role of the anterior insula.

    PubMed

    Harlé, Katia M; Chang, Luke J; van 't Wout, Mascha; Sanfey, Alan G

    2012-05-15

    Though emotions have been shown to have sometimes dramatic effects on decision-making, the neural mechanisms mediating these biases are relatively unexplored. Here, we investigated how incidental affect (i.e. emotional states unrelated to the decision at hand) may influence decisions, and how these biases are implemented in the brain. Nineteen adult participants made decisions which involved accepting or rejecting monetary offers from others in an Ultimatum Game while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Prior to each set of decisions, participants watched a short video clip aimed at inducing either a sad or neutral emotional state. Results demonstrated that, as expected, sad participants rejected more unfair offers than those in the neutral condition. Neuroimaging analyses revealed that receiving unfair offers while in a sad mood elicited activity in brain areas related to aversive emotional states and somatosensory integration (anterior insula) and to cognitive conflict (anterior cingulate cortex). Sad participants also showed a diminished sensitivity in neural regions associated with reward processing (ventral striatum). Importantly, insular activation uniquely mediated the relationship between sadness and decision bias. This study is the first to reveal how subtle mood states can be integrated at the neural level to influence decision-making.

  12. A modified dynamic evolving neural-fuzzy approach to modeling customer satisfaction for affective design.

    PubMed

    Kwong, C K; Fung, K Y; Jiang, Huimin; Chan, K Y; Siu, Kin Wai Michael

    2013-01-01

    Affective design is an important aspect of product development to achieve a competitive edge in the marketplace. A neural-fuzzy network approach has been attempted recently to model customer satisfaction for affective design and it has been proved to be an effective one to deal with the fuzziness and non-linearity of the modeling as well as generate explicit customer satisfaction models. However, such an approach to modeling customer satisfaction has two limitations. First, it is not suitable for the modeling problems which involve a large number of inputs. Second, it cannot adapt to new data sets, given that its structure is fixed once it has been developed. In this paper, a modified dynamic evolving neural-fuzzy approach is proposed to address the above mentioned limitations. A case study on the affective design of mobile phones was conducted to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed methodology. Validation tests were conducted and the test results indicated that: (1) the conventional Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) failed to run due to a large number of inputs; (2) the proposed dynamic neural-fuzzy model outperforms the subtractive clustering-based ANFIS model and fuzzy c-means clustering-based ANFIS model in terms of their modeling accuracy and computational effort. PMID:24385884

  13. A Modified Dynamic Evolving Neural-Fuzzy Approach to Modeling Customer Satisfaction for Affective Design

    PubMed Central

    Kwong, C. K.; Fung, K. Y.; Jiang, Huimin; Chan, K. Y.

    2013-01-01

    Affective design is an important aspect of product development to achieve a competitive edge in the marketplace. A neural-fuzzy network approach has been attempted recently to model customer satisfaction for affective design and it has been proved to be an effective one to deal with the fuzziness and non-linearity of the modeling as well as generate explicit customer satisfaction models. However, such an approach to modeling customer satisfaction has two limitations. First, it is not suitable for the modeling problems which involve a large number of inputs. Second, it cannot adapt to new data sets, given that its structure is fixed once it has been developed. In this paper, a modified dynamic evolving neural-fuzzy approach is proposed to address the above mentioned limitations. A case study on the affective design of mobile phones was conducted to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed methodology. Validation tests were conducted and the test results indicated that: (1) the conventional Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) failed to run due to a large number of inputs; (2) the proposed dynamic neural-fuzzy model outperforms the subtractive clustering-based ANFIS model and fuzzy c-means clustering-based ANFIS model in terms of their modeling accuracy and computational effort. PMID:24385884

  14. Robust state estimation for neural networks with discontinuous activations.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaoyang; Cao, Jinde

    2010-12-01

    Discontinuous dynamical systems, particularly neural networks with discontinuous activation functions, arise in a number of applications and have received considerable research attention in recent years. In this paper, the robust state estimation problem is investigated for uncertain neural networks with discontinuous activations and time-varying delays, where the neuron-dependent nonlinear disturbance on the network outputs are only assumed to satisfy the local Lipschitz condition. Based on the theory of differential inclusions and nonsmooth analysis, several criteria are presented to guarantee the existence of the desired robust state estimator for the discontinuous neural networks. It is shown that the design of the state estimator for such networks can be achieved by solving some linear matrix inequalities, which are dependent on the size of the time derivative of the time-varying delays. Finally, numerical examples are given to illustrate the theoretical results.

  15. Generating Coherent Patterns of Activity from Chaotic Neural Networks

    PubMed Central

    Sussillo, David; Abbott, L. F.

    2009-01-01

    Neural circuits display complex activity patterns both spontaneously and when responding to a stimulus or generating a motor output. How are these two forms of activity related? We develop a procedure called FORCE learning for modifying synaptic strengths either external to or within a model neural network to change chaotic spontaneous activity into a wide variety of desired activity patterns. FORCE learning works even though the networks we train are spontaneously chaotic and we leave feedback loops intact and unclamped during learning. Using this approach, we construct networks that produce a wide variety of complex output patterns, input-output transformations that require memory, multiple outputs that can be switched by control inputs, and motor patterns matching human motion capture data. Our results reproduce data on pre-movement activity in motor and premotor cortex, and suggest that synaptic plasticity may be a more rapid and powerful modulator of network activity than generally appreciated. PMID:19709635

  16. Topographic organization of Hebbian neural connections by synchronous wave activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mihaliuk, Eugene; Wackerbauer, Renate; Showalter, Kenneth

    2001-03-01

    Experimental studies have revealed that the refinement of early, imprecise connections in the developing visual system involves activity in the retina before the onset of vision. We study the evolution of initially random unidirectional connections between two excitable layers of FitzHugh-Nagumo neurons with simulated spontaneous activity in the input layer. Lateral coupling within the layers yields synchronous neural wave activity that serves as a template for the Hebbian learning process, which establishes topographically precise interlayer connections.

  17. Distinct neural activity associated with focused-attention meditation and loving-kindness meditation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Tatia M C; Leung, Mei-Kei; Hou, Wai-Kai; Tang, Joey C Y; Yin, Jing; So, Kwok-Fai; Lee, Chack-Fan; Chan, Chetwyn C H

    2012-01-01

    This study examined the dissociable neural effects of ānāpānasati (focused-attention meditation, FAM) and mettā (loving-kindness meditation, LKM) on BOLD signals during cognitive (continuous performance test, CPT) and affective (emotion-processing task, EPT, in which participants viewed affective pictures) processing. Twenty-two male Chinese expert meditators (11 FAM experts, 11 LKM experts) and 22 male Chinese novice meditators (11 FAM novices, 11 LKM novices) had their brain activity monitored by a 3T MRI scanner while performing the cognitive and affective tasks in both meditation and baseline states. We examined the interaction between state (meditation vs. baseline) and expertise (expert vs. novice) separately during LKM and FAM, using a conjunction approach to reveal common regions sensitive to the expert meditative state. Additionally, exclusive masking techniques revealed distinct interactions between state and group during LKM and FAM. Specifically, we demonstrated that the practice of FAM was associated with expertise-related behavioral improvements and neural activation differences in attention task performance. However, the effect of state LKM meditation did not carry over to attention task performance. On the other hand, both FAM and LKM practice appeared to affect the neural responses to affective pictures. For viewing sad faces, the regions activated for FAM practitioners were consistent with attention-related processing; whereas responses of LKM experts to sad pictures were more in line with differentiating emotional contagion from compassion/emotional regulation processes. Our findings provide the first report of distinct neural activity associated with forms of meditation during sustained attention and emotion processing.

  18. dNTP deficiency induced by HU via inhibiting ribonucleotide reductase affects neural tube development.

    PubMed

    Guan, Zhen; Wang, Xiuwei; Dong, Yanting; Xu, Lin; Zhu, Zhiqiang; Wang, Jianhua; Zhang, Ting; Niu, Bo

    2015-02-01

    Exposure to environmental toxic chemicals in utero during the neural tube development period can cause developmental disorders. To evaluate the disruption of neural tube development programming, the murine neural tube defects (NTDs) model was induced by interrupting folate metabolism using methotrexate in our previous study. The present study aimed to examine the effects of dNTP deficiency induced by hydroxyurea (HU), a specific ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) inhibitor, during murine neural tube development. Pregnant C57BL/6J mice were intraperitoneally injected with various doses of HU on gestation day (GD) 7.5, and the embryos were checked on GD 11.5. RNR activity and deoxynucleoside triphosphate (dNTP) levels were measured in the optimal dose. Additionally, DNA damage was examined by comet analysis and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase mediated dUTP nick end-labeling (TUNEL) assay. Cellular behaviors in NTDs embryos were evaluated with phosphorylation of histone H3 (PH-3) and caspase-3 using immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis. The results showed that NTDs were observed mostly with HU treatment at an optimal dose of 225 mg/kg b/w. RNR activity was inhibited and dNTP levels were decreased in HU-treated embryos with NTDs. Additionally, increased DNA damage, decreased proliferation, and increased caspase-3 were significant in NTDs embryos compared to the controls. Results indicated that HU induced murine NTDs model by disturbing dNTP metabolism and further led to the abnormal cell balance between proliferation and apoptosis.

  19. Controlling neural activity in Caenorhabditis elegans to evoke chemotactic behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kocabas, Askin; Shen, Ching-Han; Guo, Zengcai V.; Ramanathan, Sharad

    2013-03-01

    Animals locate and track chemoattractive gradients in the environment to find food. With its simple nervous system, Caenorhabditis elegans is a good model system in which to understand how the dynamics of neural activity control this search behavior. To understand how the activity in its interneurons coordinate different motor programs to lead the animal to food, here we used optogenetics and new optical tools to manipulate neural activity directly in freely moving animals to evoke chemotactic behavior. By deducing the classes of activity patterns triggered during chemotaxis and exciting individual neurons with these patterns, we identified interneurons that control the essential locomotory programs for this behavior. Notably, we discovered that controlling the dynamics of activity in just one interneuron pair was sufficient to force the animal to locate, turn towards and track virtual light gradients.

  20. Spontaneous local variations in ongoing neural activity bias perceptual decisions

    PubMed Central

    Hesselmann, Guido; Kell, Christian A.; Eger, Evelyn; Kleinschmidt, Andreas

    2008-01-01

    Neural variability in responding to identical repeated stimuli has been related to trial-by-trial fluctuations in ongoing activity, yet the neural and perceptual consequences of these fluctuations remain poorly understood. Using functional neuroimaging, we recorded brain activity in subjects who reported perceptual decisions on an ambiguous figure, Rubin's vase-faces picture, which was briefly presented at variable intervals of ≥20 s. Prestimulus activity in the fusiform face area, a cortical region preferentially responding to faces, was higher when subjects subsequently perceived faces instead of the vase. This finding suggests that endogenous variations in prestimulus neuronal activity biased subsequent perceptual inference. Furnishing evidence that evoked sensory responses, we then went on to show that the pre- and poststimulus activity interact in a nonlinear way and the ensuing perceptual decisions depend upon the prestimulus context in which they occur. PMID:18664576

  1. Percolation transition in active neural networks with adaptive geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iudin, F. D.; Iudin, D. I.; Kazantsev, V. B.

    2015-02-01

    A mathematical model has been proposed for a neural network whose morphological structure varies dynamically depending on activity. This is the property of the so-called structural plasticity typical of developed neural systems of a brain. It has been shown that the spontaneous generation and propagation of a signal in such networks correspond to a percolation transition and the appearance of the connectivity component covering the entire system. Furthermore, adaptive change in the geometric structure of a network results in the clustering of cells and in the reduction of the effective percolation threshold, which corresponds to experimental neurobiological observations.

  2. Neural activity predicts attitude change in cognitive dissonance.

    PubMed

    van Veen, Vincent; Krug, Marie K; Schooler, Jonathan W; Carter, Cameron S

    2009-11-01

    When our actions conflict with our prior attitudes, we often change our attitudes to be more consistent with our actions. This phenomenon, known as cognitive dissonance, is considered to be one of the most influential theories in psychology. However, the neural basis of this phenomenon is unknown. Using a Solomon four-group design, we scanned participants with functional MRI while they argued that the uncomfortable scanner environment was nevertheless a pleasant experience. We found that cognitive dissonance engaged the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and anterior insula; furthermore, we found that the activation of these regions tightly predicted participants' subsequent attitude change. These effects were not observed in a control group. Our findings elucidate the neural representation of cognitive dissonance, and support the role of the anterior cingulate cortex in detecting cognitive conflict and the neural prediction of attitude change.

  3. Active Affective Learning for Accelerated Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richardson, Robert B.

    This paper provides the groundwork for Active Affective Learning and teaching adapted to the needs of the disadvantaged, at-risk students served by the Accelerated Schools Movement. One of the "golden rules" for the practice of Accelerated Learning, according to psychiatrist Georgi Lozanov, has been to maintain an "up-beat" classroom presentation…

  4. Neural Activity When People Solve Verbal Problems with Insight

    PubMed Central

    2004-01-01

    People sometimes solve problems with a unique process called insight, accompanied by an “Aha!” experience. It has long been unclear whether different cognitive and neural processes lead to insight versus noninsight solutions, or if solutions differ only in subsequent subjective feeling. Recent behavioral studies indicate distinct patterns of performance and suggest differential hemispheric involvement for insight and noninsight solutions. Subjects solved verbal problems, and after each correct solution indicated whether they solved with or without insight. We observed two objective neural correlates of insight. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (Experiment 1) revealed increased activity in the right hemisphere anterior superior temporal gyrus for insight relative to noninsight solutions. The same region was active during initial solving efforts. Scalp electroencephalogram recordings (Experiment 2) revealed a sudden burst of high-frequency (gamma-band) neural activity in the same area beginning 0.3 s prior to insight solutions. This right anterior temporal area is associated with making connections across distantly related information during comprehension. Although all problem solving relies on a largely shared cortical network, the sudden flash of insight occurs when solvers engage distinct neural and cognitive processes that allow them to see connections that previously eluded them. PMID:15094802

  5. Neural activations correlated with reading speed during reading novels.

    PubMed

    Fujimaki, Norio; Munetsuna, Shinji; Sasaki, Toyofumi; Hayakawa, Tomoe; Ihara, Aya; Wei, Qiang; Terazono, Yasushi; Murata, Tsutomu

    2009-12-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to measure neural activations in subjects instructed to silently read novels at ordinary and rapid speeds. Among the 19 subjects, 8 were experts in a rapid reading technique. Subjects pressed a button to turn pages during reading, and the interval between turning pages was recorded to evaluate the reading speed. For each subject, we evaluated activations in 14 areas and at 2 instructed reading speeds. Neural activations decreased with increasing reading speed in the left middle and posterior superior temporal area, left inferior frontal area, left precentral area, and the anterior temporal areas of both hemispheres, which have been reported to be active for linguistic processes, while neural activation increased with increasing reading speed in the right intraparietal sulcus, which is considered to reflect visuo-spatial processes. Despite the considerable reading speed differences, correlation analysis showed no significant difference in activation dependence on reading speed with respect to the subject groups and instructed reading speeds. The activation reduction with speed increase in language-related areas was opposite to the previous reports for low reading speeds. The present results suggest that subjects reduced linguistic processes with reading speed increase from ordinary to rapid speed.

  6. Comparing the neural correlates of affective and cognitive theory of mind using fMRI: Involvement of the basal ganglia in affective theory of mind

    PubMed Central

    Bodden, Maren E.; Kübler, Dorothee; Knake, Susanne; Menzler, Katja; Heverhagen, Johannes T.; Sommer, Jens; Kalbe, Elke; Krach, Sören; Dodel, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Theory of Mind (ToM) is the ability to infer other people’s mental states like intentions or desires. ToM can be differentiated into affective (i.e., recognizing the feelings of another person) and cognitive (i.e., inferring the mental state of the counterpart) subcomponents. Recently, subcortical structures such as the basal ganglia (BG) have also been ascribed to the multifaceted concept ToM and most BG disorders have been reported to elicit ToM deficits. In order to assess both the correlates of affective and cognitive ToM as well as involvement of the basal ganglia, 30 healthy participants underwent event-related fMRI scanning, neuropsychological testing, and filled in questionnaires concerning different aspects of ToM and empathy. Directly contrasting affective (aff) as well as cognitive (cog) ToM to the control (phy) condition, activation was found in classical ToM regions, namely parts of the temporal lobe including the superior temporal sulcus, the supplementary motor area, and parietal structures in the right hemisphere. The contrast aff > phy yielded additional activation in the orbitofrontal cortex on the right and the cingulate cortex, the precentral and inferior frontal gyrus and the cerebellum on the left. The right BG were recruited in this contrast as well. The direct contrast aff > cog showed activation in the temporoparietal junction and the cingulate cortex on the right as well as in the left supplementary motor area. The reverse contrast cog > aff however did not yield any significant clusters. In summary, affective and cognitive ToM partly share neural correlates but can also be differentiated anatomically. Furthermore, the BG are involved in affective ToM and thus their contribution is discussed as possibly providing a motor component of simulation processes, particularly in affective ToM. PMID:23853676

  7. Fast ventral stream neural activity enables rapid visual categorization.

    PubMed

    Cauchoix, Maxime; Crouzet, Sébastien M; Fize, Denis; Serre, Thomas

    2016-01-15

    Primates can recognize objects embedded in complex natural scenes in a glimpse. Rapid categorization paradigms have been extensively used to study our core perceptual abilities when the visual system is forced to operate under strong time constraints. However, the neural underpinning of rapid categorization remains to be understood, and the incredible speed of sight has yet to be reconciled with modern ventral stream cortical theories of object recognition. Here we recorded multichannel subdural electrocorticogram (ECoG) signals from intermediate areas (V4/PIT) of the ventral stream of the visual cortex while monkeys were actively engaged in a rapid animal/non-animal categorization task. A traditional event-related potential (ERP) analysis revealed short visual latencies (<50-70ms) followed by a rapidly developing visual selectivity (within ~20-30ms) for most electrodes. A multi-variate pattern analysis (MVPA) technique further confirmed that reliable animal/non-animal category information was possible from this initial ventral stream neural activity (within ~90-100ms). Furthermore, this early category-selective neural activity was (a) unaffected by the presentation of a backward (pattern) mask, (b) generalized to novel (unfamiliar) stimuli and (c) co-varied with behavioral responses (both accuracy and reaction times). Despite the strong prevalence of task-related information on the neural signal, task-irrelevant visual information could still be decoded independently of monkey behavior. Monkey behavioral responses were also found to correlate significantly with human behavioral responses for the same set of stimuli. Together, the present study establishes that rapid ventral stream neural activity induces a visually selective signal subsequently used to drive rapid visual categorization and that this visual strategy may be shared between human and non-human primates. PMID:26477655

  8. When your friends make you cringe: social closeness modulates vicarious embarrassment-related neural activity.

    PubMed

    Müller-Pinzler, Laura; Rademacher, Lena; Paulus, Frieder M; Krach, Sören

    2016-03-01

    Social closeness is a potent moderator of vicarious affect and specifically vicarious embarrassment. The neural pathways of how social closeness to another person affects our experience of vicarious embarrassment for the other's public flaws, failures and norm violations are yet unknown. To bridge this gap, we examined the neural response of participants while witnessing threats to either a friend's or a stranger's social integrity. The results show consistent responses of the anterior insula (AI) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), shared circuits of the aversive quality of affect, as well as the medial prefrontal cortex and temporal pole, central structures of the mentalizing network. However, the ACC/AI network activation was increased during vicarious embarrassment in response to a friend's failures. At the same time, the precuneus, a brain region associated with self-related thoughts, showed a specific activation and an increase in functional connectivity with the shared circuits in the frontal lobe while observing friends. This might indicate a neural systems mechanism for greater affective sharing and self-involvement while people interact with close others that are relevant to oneself.

  9. Dynamic neural activity during stress signals resilient coping.

    PubMed

    Sinha, Rajita; Lacadie, Cheryl M; Constable, R Todd; Seo, Dongju

    2016-08-01

    Active coping underlies a healthy stress response, but neural processes supporting such resilient coping are not well-known. Using a brief, sustained exposure paradigm contrasting highly stressful, threatening, and violent stimuli versus nonaversive neutral visual stimuli in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study, we show significant subjective, physiologic, and endocrine increases and temporally related dynamically distinct patterns of neural activation in brain circuits underlying the stress response. First, stress-specific sustained increases in the amygdala, striatum, hypothalamus, midbrain, right insula, and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) regions supported the stress processing and reactivity circuit. Second, dynamic neural activation during stress versus neutral runs, showing early increases followed by later reduced activation in the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC), left DLPFC, hippocampus, and left insula, suggested a stress adaptation response network. Finally, dynamic stress-specific mobilization of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (VmPFC), marked by initial hypoactivity followed by increased VmPFC activation, pointed to the VmPFC as a key locus of the emotional and behavioral control network. Consistent with this finding, greater neural flexibility signals in the VmPFC during stress correlated with active coping ratings whereas lower dynamic activity in the VmPFC also predicted a higher level of maladaptive coping behaviors in real life, including binge alcohol intake, emotional eating, and frequency of arguments and fights. These findings demonstrate acute functional neuroplasticity during stress, with distinct and separable brain networks that underlie critical components of the stress response, and a specific role for VmPFC neuroflexibility in stress-resilient coping. PMID:27432990

  10. Transient and selective suppression of neural activity with infrared light

    PubMed Central

    Duke, Austin R.; Jenkins, Michael W.; Lu, Hui; McManus, Jeffrey M.; Chiel, Hillel J.; Jansen, E. Duco

    2013-01-01

    Analysis and control of neural circuitry requires the ability to selectively activate or inhibit neurons. Previous work showed that infrared laser light selectively excited neural activity in endogenous unmyelinated and myelinated axons. However, inhibition of neuronal firing with infrared light was only observed in limited cases, is not well understood and was not precisely controlled. Using an experimentally tractable unmyelinated preparation for detailed investigation and a myelinated preparation for validation, we report that it is possible to selectively and transiently inhibit electrically-initiated axonal activation, as well as to both block or enhance the propagation of action potentials of specific motor neurons. Thus, in addition to previously shown excitation, we demonstrate an optical method of suppressing components of the nervous system with functional spatiotemporal precision. We believe this technique is well-suited for non-invasive investigations of diverse excitable tissues and may ultimately be applied for treating neurological disorders. PMID:24009039

  11. Anthropogenic changes in sodium affect neural and muscle development in butterflies

    PubMed Central

    Snell-Rood, Emilie C.; Espeset, Anne; Boser, Christopher J.; White, William A.; Smykalski, Rhea

    2014-01-01

    The development of organisms is changing drastically because of anthropogenic changes in once-limited nutrients. Although the importance of changing macronutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, is well-established, it is less clear how anthropogenic changes in micronutrients will affect organismal development, potentially changing dynamics of selection. We use butterflies as a study system to test whether changes in sodium availability due to road salt runoff have significant effects on the development of sodium-limited traits, such as neural and muscle tissue. We first document how road salt runoff can elevate sodium concentrations in the tissue of some plant groups by 1.5–30 times. Using monarch butterflies reared on roadside- and prairie-collected milkweed, we then show that road salt runoff can result in increased muscle mass (in males) and neural investment (in females). Finally, we use an artificial diet manipulation in cabbage white butterflies to show that variation in sodium chloride per se positively affects male flight muscle and female brain size. Variation in sodium not only has different effects depending on sex, but also can have opposing effects on the same tissue: across both species, males increase investment in flight muscle with increasing sodium, whereas females show the opposite pattern. Taken together, our results show that anthropogenic changes in sodium availability can affect the development of traits in roadside-feeding herbivores. This research suggests that changing micronutrient availability could alter selection on foraging behavior for some roadside-developing invertebrates. PMID:24927579

  12. Anthropogenic changes in sodium affect neural and muscle development in butterflies.

    PubMed

    Snell-Rood, Emilie C; Espeset, Anne; Boser, Christopher J; White, William A; Smykalski, Rhea

    2014-07-15

    The development of organisms is changing drastically because of anthropogenic changes in once-limited nutrients. Although the importance of changing macronutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, is well-established, it is less clear how anthropogenic changes in micronutrients will affect organismal development, potentially changing dynamics of selection. We use butterflies as a study system to test whether changes in sodium availability due to road salt runoff have significant effects on the development of sodium-limited traits, such as neural and muscle tissue. We first document how road salt runoff can elevate sodium concentrations in the tissue of some plant groups by 1.5-30 times. Using monarch butterflies reared on roadside- and prairie-collected milkweed, we then show that road salt runoff can result in increased muscle mass (in males) and neural investment (in females). Finally, we use an artificial diet manipulation in cabbage white butterflies to show that variation in sodium chloride per se positively affects male flight muscle and female brain size. Variation in sodium not only has different effects depending on sex, but also can have opposing effects on the same tissue: across both species, males increase investment in flight muscle with increasing sodium, whereas females show the opposite pattern. Taken together, our results show that anthropogenic changes in sodium availability can affect the development of traits in roadside-feeding herbivores. This research suggests that changing micronutrient availability could alter selection on foraging behavior for some roadside-developing invertebrates. PMID:24927579

  13. Do recreational activities affect coastal biodiversity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riera, Rodrigo; Menci, Cristiano; Sanabria-Fernández, José Antonio; Becerro, Mikel A.

    2016-09-01

    Human activities are largely affecting coastal communities worldwide. Recreational perturbations have been overlooked in comparison to other perturbations, yet they are potential threats to marine biodiversity. They affect coastal communities in different ways, underpinning consistent shifts in fish and invertebrates assemblages. Several sites were sampled subjected to varying effects by recreational fishermen (low and high pressure) and scuba divers (low and high) in an overpopulated Atlantic island. Non-consistent differences in ecological, trophic and functional diversity were found in coastal communities, considering both factors ("diving" and "fishing"). Multivariate analyses only showed significant differences in benthic invertebrates between intensively-dived and non-dived sites. The lack of clear trends may be explained by the depletion of coastal resources in the study area, an extensively-affected island by overfishing.

  14. Decoding Ventromedial Hypothalamic Neural Activity during Male Mouse Aggression

    PubMed Central

    Dollar, Piotr; Perona, Pietro

    2014-01-01

    The ventromedial hypothalamus, ventrolateral area (VMHvl) was identified recently as a critical locus for inter-male aggression. Optogenetic stimulation of VMHvl in male mice evokes attack toward conspecifics and inactivation of the region inhibits natural aggression, yet very little is known about its underlying neural activity. To understand its role in promoting aggression, we recorded and analyzed neural activity in the VMHvl in response to a wide range of social and nonsocial stimuli. Although response profiles of VMHvl neurons are complex and heterogeneous, we identified a subpopulation of neurons that respond maximally during investigation and attack of male conspecific mice and during investigation of a source of male mouse urine. These “male responsive” neurons in the VMHvl are tuned to both the inter-male distance and the animal's velocity during attack. Additionally, VMHvl activity predicts several parameters of future aggressive action, including the latency and duration of the next attack. Linear regression analysis further demonstrates that aggression-specific parameters, such as distance, movement velocity, and attack latency, can model ongoing VMHvl activity fluctuation during inter-male encounters. These results represent the first effort to understand the hypothalamic neural activity during social behaviors using quantitative tools and suggest an important role for the VMHvl in encoding movement, sensory, and motivation-related signals. PMID:24760856

  15. Optogenetic feedback control of neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Newman, Jonathan P; Fong, Ming-fai; Millard, Daniel C; Whitmire, Clarissa J; Stanley, Garrett B; Potter, Steve M

    2015-01-01

    Optogenetic techniques enable precise excitation and inhibition of firing in specified neuronal populations and artifact-free recording of firing activity. Several studies have suggested that optical stimulation provides the precision and dynamic range requisite for closed-loop neuronal control, but no approach yet permits feedback control of neuronal firing. Here we present the ‘optoclamp’, a feedback control technology that provides continuous, real-time adjustments of bidirectional optical stimulation in order to lock spiking activity at specified targets over timescales ranging from seconds to days. We demonstrate how this system can be used to decouple neuronal firing levels from ongoing changes in network excitability due to multi-hour periods of glutamatergic or GABAergic neurotransmission blockade in vitro as well as impinging vibrissal sensory drive in vivo. This technology enables continuous, precise optical control of firing in neuronal populations in order to disentangle causally related variables of circuit activation in a physiologically and ethologically relevant manner. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07192.001 PMID:26140329

  16. Monitoring activity in neural circuits with genetically encoded indicators

    PubMed Central

    Broussard, Gerard J.; Liang, Ruqiang; Tian, Lin

    2014-01-01

    Recent developments in genetically encoded indicators of neural activity (GINAs) have greatly advanced the field of systems neuroscience. As they are encoded by DNA, GINAs can be targeted to genetically defined cellular populations. Combined with fluorescence microscopy, most notably multi-photon imaging, GINAs allow chronic simultaneous optical recordings from large populations of neurons or glial cells in awake, behaving mammals, particularly rodents. This large-scale recording of neural activity at multiple temporal and spatial scales has greatly advanced our understanding of the dynamics of neural circuitry underlying behavior—a critical first step toward understanding the complexities of brain function, such as sensorimotor integration and learning. Here, we summarize the recent development and applications of the major classes of GINAs. In particular, we take an in-depth look at the design of available GINA families with a particular focus on genetically encoded calcium indicators (GCaMPs), sensors probing synaptic activity, and genetically encoded voltage indicators. Using the family of the GCaMP as an example, we review established sensor optimization pipelines. We also discuss practical considerations for end users of GINAs about experimental methods including approaches for gene delivery, imaging system requirements, and data analysis techniques. With the growing toolbox of GINAs and with new microscopy techniques pushing beyond their current limits, the age of light can finally achieve the goal of broad and dense sampling of neuronal activity across time and brain structures to obtain a dynamic picture of brain function. PMID:25538558

  17. The effects of gratitude expression on neural activity.

    PubMed

    Kini, Prathik; Wong, Joel; McInnis, Sydney; Gabana, Nicole; Brown, Joshua W

    2016-03-01

    Gratitude is a common aspect of social interaction, yet relatively little is known about the neural bases of gratitude expression, nor how gratitude expression may lead to longer-term effects on brain activity. To address these twin issues, we recruited subjects who coincidentally were entering psychotherapy for depression and/or anxiety. One group participated in a gratitude writing intervention, which required them to write letters expressing gratitude. The therapy-as-usual control group did not perform a writing intervention. After three months, subjects performed a "Pay It Forward" task in the fMRI scanner. In the task, subjects were repeatedly endowed with a monetary gift and then asked to pass it on to a charitable cause to the extent they felt grateful for the gift. Operationalizing gratitude as monetary gifts allowed us to engage the subjects and quantify the gratitude expression for subsequent analyses. We measured brain activity and found regions where activity correlated with self-reported gratitude experience during the task, even including related constructs such as guilt motivation and desire to help as statistical controls. These were mostly distinct from brain regions activated by empathy or theory of mind. Also, our between groups cross-sectional study found that a simple gratitude writing intervention was associated with significantly greater and lasting neural sensitivity to gratitude - subjects who participated in gratitude letter writing showed both behavioral increases in gratitude and significantly greater neural modulation by gratitude in the medial prefrontal cortex three months later.

  18. Neural responses to affective and cognitive theory of mind in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Kim, Eunjoo; Kyeong, Sunghyon; Cheon, Keun-Ah; Park, Bumhee; Oh, Maeng-Keun; Chun, Ji Won; Park, Hae-Jeong; Kim, Jae-Jin; Song, Dong-Ho

    2016-05-16

    Children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are characterized by an impaired Theory of Mind (ToM). Recent evidence suggested that two aspects of ToM (cognitive ToM versus affective ToM) are differentially impaired in individuals with ASD. In this study, we examined the neural correlates of cognitive and affective ToM in children and adolescents with ASD compared to typically developing children (TDCs). Twelve children and adolescents with ASD and 12 age, IQ matched TDCs participated in this functional MRI study. The ToM task involved the attribution of cognitive and affective mental states to a cartoon character based on verbal and eye-gaze cues. In cognitive ToM tasks, ASD participants recruited the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), and superior temporal gyrus (STG) to a greater extent than did TDCs. In affective ToM tasks, both ASD and TDC participants showed more activation in the insula and other subcortical regions than in cognitive ToM tasks. Correlational analysis revealed that greater activation of the mPFC/ACC regions was associated with less symptom severity in ASD patients. In sum, our study suggests that the recruitment of additional prefrontal resources can compensate for the successful behavioral performance in the ToM task in ASD participants. PMID:27084690

  19. Neural activation associated with the cognitive emotion regulation of sadness in healthy children.

    PubMed

    Belden, Andy C; Luby, Joan L; Pagliaccio, David; Barch, Deanna M

    2014-07-01

    When used effectively, cognitive reappraisal of distressing events is a highly adaptive cognitive emotion regulation (CER) strategy, with impairments in cognitive reappraisal associated with greater risk for psychopathology. Despite extensive literature examining the neural correlates of cognitive reappraisal in healthy and psychiatrically ill adults, there is a dearth of data to inform the neural bases of CER in children, a key gap in the literature necessary to map the developmental trajectory of cognitive reappraisal. In this fMRI study, psychiatrically healthy schoolchildren were instructed to use cognitive reappraisal to modulate their emotional reactions and responses of negative affect after viewing sad photos. Consistent with the adult literature, when actively engaged in reappraisal compared to passively viewing sad photos, children showed increased activation in the vlPFC, dlPFC, and dmPFC as well as in parietal and temporal lobe regions. When children used cognitive reappraisal to minimize their experience of negative affect after viewing sad stimuli they exhibited dampened amygdala responses. Results are discussed in relation to the importance of identifying and characterizing neural processes underlying adaptive CER strategies in typically developing children in order to understand how these systems go awry and relate to the risk and occurrence of affective disorders.

  20. Folate-related gene variants in Irish families affected by neural tube defects

    PubMed Central

    Fisk Green, Ridgely; Byrne, Julianne; Crider, Krista S.; Gallagher, Margaret; Koontz, Deborah; Berry, Robert J.

    2013-01-01

    Periconceptional folic acid use can often prevent neural tube defects (NTDs). Variants of genes involved in folate metabolism in mothers and children have been associated with occurrence of NTDs. We identified Irish families with individuals affected by neural tube defects. In these families, we observed that neural tube defects and birth defects overall occurred at a higher rate in the maternal lineage compared with the paternal lineage. The goal of this study was to look for evidence for genetic effects that could explain the discrepancy in the occurrence of these birth defects in the maternal vs. paternal lineage. We genotyped blood samples from 322 individuals from NTD-affected Irish families, identified through their membership in spina bifida associations. We looked for differences in distribution in maternal vs. paternal lineages of five genetic polymorphisms: the DHFR 19 bp deletion, MTHFD1 1958G>A, MTHFR 1298A>C, MTHFR 677C>T, and SLC19A1 80A>G. In addition to looking at genotypes individually, we determined the number of genotypes associated with decreased folate metabolism in each relative (“risk genotypes”) and compared the distribution of these genotypes in maternal vs. paternal relatives. Overall, maternal relatives had a higher number of genotypes associated with lower folate metabolism than paternal relatives (p = 0.017). We expected that relatives would share the same risk genotype as the individuals with NTDs and/or their mothers. However, we observed that maternal relatives had an over-abundance of any risk genotype, rather than one specific genotype. The observed genetic effects suggest an epigenetic mechanism in which decreased folate metabolism results in epigenetic alterations related to the increased rate of NTDs and other birth defects seen in the maternal lineage. Future studies on the etiology of NTDs and other birth defects could benefit from including multigenerational extended families, in order to explore potential epigenetic

  1. Neural correlates of cognitive and affective processing in maltreated youth with posttraumatic stress symptoms: Does gender matter?

    PubMed Central

    Crozier, Joseph C.; Wang, Lihong; Huettel, Scott A.; De Bellis, Michael D.

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the relationship of gender to cognitive and affective processing in maltreated youth with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Maltreated (N=29; n=13 females, n=16 males) and non-maltreated participants (N=45; n=26 females, n=19 males) performed an emotional oddball task that involved detection of targets with fear or scrambled face distractors. Results were moderated by gender. During the executive component of this task, left precuneus/posterior middle cingulate hypoactivation to fear versus calm or scrambled face targets were seen in maltreated versus control males and may represent dysfunction and less resilience in attentional networks. Maltreated males also showed decreased activation in the inferior frontal gyrus compared to control males. No differences were found in females. Posterior cingulate activations positively correlated with PTSD symptoms. While viewing fear faces, maltreated females exhibited decreased activity in dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and cerebellum I–VI; whereas maltreated males exhibited increased activity in left hippocampus, fusiform cortex, right cerebellar crus I, and visual cortex compared to their same gender controls. Gender by maltreatment effects were not attributable to demographic, clinical, or maltreatment parameters. Maltreated girls and boys exhibited distinct patterns of neural activations during executive and affective processing, a new finding in the maltreatment literature. PMID:24621958

  2. Loss of CDK5RAP2 affects neural but not non-neural mESC differentiation into cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Kraemer, Nadine; Ravindran, Ethiraj; Zaqout, Sami; Neubert, Gerda; Schindler, Detlev; Ninnemann, Olaf; Gräf, Ralph; Seiler, Andrea E M; Kaindl, Angela M

    2015-01-01

    Biallelic mutations in the gene encoding centrosomal CDK5RAP2 lead to autosomal recessive primary microcephaly (MCPH), a disorder characterized by pronounced reduction in volume of otherwise architectonical normal brains and intellectual deficit. The current model for the microcephaly phenotype in MCPH invokes a premature shift from symmetric to asymmetric neural progenitor-cell divisions with a subsequent depletion of the progenitor pool. The isolated neural phenotype, despite the ubiquitous expression of CDK5RAP2, and reports of progressive microcephaly in individual MCPH cases prompted us to investigate neural and non-neural differentiation of Cdk5rap2-depleted and control murine embryonic stem cells (mESC). We demonstrate an accumulating proliferation defect of neurally differentiating Cdk5rap2-depleted mESC and cell death of proliferative and early postmitotic cells. A similar effect does not occur in non-neural differentiation into beating cardiomyocytes, which is in line with the lack of non-central nervous system features in MCPH patients. Our data suggest that MCPH is not only caused by premature differentiation of progenitors, but also by reduced propagation and survival of neural progenitors. PMID:25942099

  3. Loss of CDK5RAP2 affects neural but not non-neural mESC differentiation into cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Kraemer, Nadine; Ravindran, Ethiraj; Zaqout, Sami; Neubert, Gerda; Schindler, Detlev; Ninnemann, Olaf; Gräf, Ralph; Seiler, Andrea EM; Kaindl, Angela M

    2015-01-01

    Biallelic mutations in the gene encoding centrosomal CDK5RAP2 lead to autosomal recessive primary microcephaly (MCPH), a disorder characterized by pronounced reduction in volume of otherwise architectonical normal brains and intellectual deficit. The current model for the microcephaly phenotype in MCPH invokes a premature shift from symmetric to asymmetric neural progenitor-cell divisions with a subsequent depletion of the progenitor pool. The isolated neural phenotype, despite the ubiquitous expression of CDK5RAP2, and reports of progressive microcephaly in individual MCPH cases prompted us to investigate neural and non-neural differentiation of Cdk5rap2-depleted and control murine embryonic stem cells (mESC). We demonstrate an accumulating proliferation defect of neurally differentiating Cdk5rap2-depleted mESC and cell death of proliferative and early postmitotic cells. A similar effect does not occur in non-neural differentiation into beating cardiomyocytes, which is in line with the lack of non-central nervous system features in MCPH patients. Our data suggest that MCPH is not only caused by premature differentiation of progenitors, but also by reduced propagation and survival of neural progenitors. PMID:25942099

  4. Pushing the Limits: Cognitive, Affective, and Neural Plasticity Revealed by an Intensive Multifaceted Intervention.

    PubMed

    Mrazek, Michael D; Mooneyham, Benjamin W; Mrazek, Kaita L; Schooler, Jonathan W

    2016-01-01

    Scientific understanding of how much the adult brain can be shaped by experience requires examination of how multiple influences combine to elicit cognitive, affective, and neural plasticity. Using an intensive multifaceted intervention, we discovered that substantial and enduring improvements can occur in parallel across multiple cognitive and neuroimaging measures in healthy young adults. The intervention elicited substantial improvements in physical health, working memory, standardized test performance, mood, self-esteem, self-efficacy, mindfulness, and life satisfaction. Improvements in mindfulness were associated with increased degree centrality of the insula, greater functional connectivity between insula and somatosensory cortex, and reduced functional connectivity between posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and somatosensory cortex. Improvements in working memory and reading comprehension were associated with increased degree centrality of a region within the middle temporal gyrus (MTG) that was extensively and predominately integrated with the executive control network. The scope and magnitude of the observed improvements represent the most extensive demonstration to date of the considerable human capacity for change. These findings point to higher limits for rapid and concurrent cognitive, affective, and neural plasticity than is widely assumed. PMID:27047361

  5. Like or dislike? Affective preference modulates neural response to others' gains and losses.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yang; Qu, Chen; Luo, Qiuling; Qu, Lulu; Li, Xuebing

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated that the brain responds differentially to others' gains and losses relative to one's own, moderated by social context factors such as competition and interpersonal relationships. In the current study, we tested the hypothesis that the neural response to others' outcomes could be modulated by a short-term induced affective preference. We engaged 17 men and 18 women in a social-exchange game, in which two confederates played fairly or unfairly. Both men and women rated the fair player as likable and the unfair players as unlikable. Afterwards, ERPs were recorded while participants observed each confederates playing a gambling game individually. This study examines feedback related negativity (FRN), an ERP component sensitive to negative feedback. ANOVA showed a significant interaction in which females but not males displayed stronger FRNs when observing likable players' outcomes compared to unlikable ones'. However, males did not respond differently under either circumstance. These findings suggest that, at least in females, the neural response is influenced by a short-term induced affective preference. PMID:25171075

  6. Pushing the Limits: Cognitive, Affective, and Neural Plasticity Revealed by an Intensive Multifaceted Intervention

    PubMed Central

    Mrazek, Michael D.; Mooneyham, Benjamin W.; Mrazek, Kaita L.; Schooler, Jonathan W.

    2016-01-01

    Scientific understanding of how much the adult brain can be shaped by experience requires examination of how multiple influences combine to elicit cognitive, affective, and neural plasticity. Using an intensive multifaceted intervention, we discovered that substantial and enduring improvements can occur in parallel across multiple cognitive and neuroimaging measures in healthy young adults. The intervention elicited substantial improvements in physical health, working memory, standardized test performance, mood, self-esteem, self-efficacy, mindfulness, and life satisfaction. Improvements in mindfulness were associated with increased degree centrality of the insula, greater functional connectivity between insula and somatosensory cortex, and reduced functional connectivity between posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and somatosensory cortex. Improvements in working memory and reading comprehension were associated with increased degree centrality of a region within the middle temporal gyrus (MTG) that was extensively and predominately integrated with the executive control network. The scope and magnitude of the observed improvements represent the most extensive demonstration to date of the considerable human capacity for change. These findings point to higher limits for rapid and concurrent cognitive, affective, and neural plasticity than is widely assumed. PMID:27047361

  7. Internal models for interpreting neural population activity during sensorimotor control

    PubMed Central

    Golub, Matthew D; Yu, Byron M; Chase, Steven M

    2015-01-01

    To successfully guide limb movements, the brain takes in sensory information about the limb, internally tracks the state of the limb, and produces appropriate motor commands. It is widely believed that this process uses an internal model, which describes our prior beliefs about how the limb responds to motor commands. Here, we leveraged a brain-machine interface (BMI) paradigm in rhesus monkeys and novel statistical analyses of neural population activity to gain insight into moment-by-moment internal model computations. We discovered that a mismatch between subjects’ internal models and the actual BMI explains roughly 65% of movement errors, as well as long-standing deficiencies in BMI speed control. We then used the internal models to characterize how the neural population activity changes during BMI learning. More broadly, this work provides an approach for interpreting neural population activity in the context of how prior beliefs guide the transformation of sensory input to motor output. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10015.001 PMID:26646183

  8. Electrodermal activity analysis during affective haptic elicitation.

    PubMed

    Greco, Alberto; Valenza, Gaetano; Nardelli, Mimma; Bianchi, Matteo; Lanata, Antonio; Scilingo, Enzo Pasquale

    2015-08-01

    This paper investigates how the autonomic nervous system dynamics, quantified through the analysis of the electrodermal activity (EDA), is modulated according to affective haptic stimuli. Specifically, a haptic display able to convey caress-like stimuli is presented to 32 healthy subjects (16 female). Each stimulus is changed according to six combinations of three velocities and two forces levels of two motors stretching a strip of fabric. Subjects were also asked to score each stimulus in terms of arousal (high/low activation) and valence (pleasant/unpleasant), in agreement with the circumplex model of affect. EDA was processed using a deconvolutive method, separating tonic and phasic components. A statistical analysis was performed in order to identify significant differences in EDA features among force and velocity levels, as well as in their valence and arousal scores. Results show that the simulated caress induced by the haptic display significantly affects the EDA. In detail, the phasic component seems to be inversely related to the valence score. This finding is new and promising, since it can be used, e.g., as an additional cue for haptics design. PMID:26737605

  9. Endogenous testosterone levels are associated with neural activity in men with schizophrenia during facial emotion processing.

    PubMed

    Ji, Ellen; Weickert, Cynthia Shannon; Lenroot, Rhoshel; Catts, Stanley V; Vercammen, Ans; White, Christopher; Gur, Raquel E; Weickert, Thomas W

    2015-06-01

    Growing evidence suggests that testosterone may play a role in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia given that testosterone has been linked to cognition and negative symptoms in schizophrenia. Here, we determine the extent to which serum testosterone levels are related to neural activity in affective processing circuitry in men with schizophrenia. Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to measure blood-oxygen-level-dependent signal changes as 32 healthy controls and 26 people with schizophrenia performed a facial emotion identification task. Whole brain analyses were performed to determine regions of differential activity between groups during processing of angry versus non-threatening faces. A follow-up ROI analysis using a regression model in a subset of 16 healthy men and 16 men with schizophrenia was used to determine the extent to which serum testosterone levels were related to neural activity. Healthy controls displayed significantly greater activation than people with schizophrenia in the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). There was no significant difference in circulating testosterone levels between healthy men and men with schizophrenia. Regression analyses between activation in the IFG and circulating testosterone levels revealed a significant positive correlation in men with schizophrenia (r=.63, p=.01) and no significant relationship in healthy men. This study provides the first evidence that circulating serum testosterone levels are related to IFG activation during emotion face processing in men with schizophrenia but not in healthy men, which suggests that testosterone levels modulate neural processes relevant to facial emotion processing that may interfere with social functioning in men with schizophrenia.

  10. Efficient Universal Computing Architectures for Decoding Neural Activity

    PubMed Central

    Rapoport, Benjamin I.; Turicchia, Lorenzo; Wattanapanitch, Woradorn; Davidson, Thomas J.; Sarpeshkar, Rahul

    2012-01-01

    The ability to decode neural activity into meaningful control signals for prosthetic devices is critical to the development of clinically useful brain– machine interfaces (BMIs). Such systems require input from tens to hundreds of brain-implanted recording electrodes in order to deliver robust and accurate performance; in serving that primary function they should also minimize power dissipation in order to avoid damaging neural tissue; and they should transmit data wirelessly in order to minimize the risk of infection associated with chronic, transcutaneous implants. Electronic architectures for brain– machine interfaces must therefore minimize size and power consumption, while maximizing the ability to compress data to be transmitted over limited-bandwidth wireless channels. Here we present a system of extremely low computational complexity, designed for real-time decoding of neural signals, and suited for highly scalable implantable systems. Our programmable architecture is an explicit implementation of a universal computing machine emulating the dynamics of a network of integrate-and-fire neurons; it requires no arithmetic operations except for counting, and decodes neural signals using only computationally inexpensive logic operations. The simplicity of this architecture does not compromise its ability to compress raw neural data by factors greater than . We describe a set of decoding algorithms based on this computational architecture, one designed to operate within an implanted system, minimizing its power consumption and data transmission bandwidth; and a complementary set of algorithms for learning, programming the decoder, and postprocessing the decoded output, designed to operate in an external, nonimplanted unit. The implementation of the implantable portion is estimated to require fewer than 5000 operations per second. A proof-of-concept, 32-channel field-programmable gate array (FPGA) implementation of this portion is consequently energy efficient

  11. Touching moments: desire modulates the neural anticipation of active romantic caress

    PubMed Central

    Ebisch, Sjoerd J.; Ferri, Francesca; Gallese, Vittorio

    2014-01-01

    A romantic caress is a basic expression of affiliative behavior and a primary reinforcer. Given its inherent affective valence, its performance also would imply the prediction of reward values. For example, touching a person for whom one has strong passionate feelings likely is motivated by a strong desire for physical contact and associated with the anticipation of hedonic experiences. The present study aims at investigating how the anticipatory neural processes of active romantic caress are modulated by the intensity of the desire for affective contact as reflected by passionate feelings for the other. Functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning was performed in romantically involved partners using a paradigm that allowed to isolate the specific anticipatory representations of active romantic caress, compared with control caress, while testing for the relationship between neural activity and measures of feelings of passionate love for the other. The results demonstrated that right posterior insula activity in anticipation of romantic caress significantly co-varied with the intensity of desire for union with the other. This effect was independent of the sensory-affective properties of the performed touch, like its pleasantness. Furthermore, functional connectivity analysis showed that the same posterior insula cluster interacted with brain regions related to sensory-motor functions as well as to the processing and anticipation of reward. The findings provide insight on the neural substrate mediating between the desire for and the performance of romantic caress. In particular, we propose that anticipatory activity patterns in posterior insula may modulate subsequent sensory-affective processing of skin-to-skin contact. PMID:24616676

  12. Oxytocin reduces neural activity in the pain circuitry when seeing pain in others

    PubMed Central

    Hermans, Erno J.; Keysers, Christian; van Honk, Jack

    2015-01-01

    Our empathetic abilities allow us to feel the pain of others. This phenomenon of vicarious feeling arises because the neural circuitry of feeling pain and seeing pain in others is shared. The neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) is considered a robust facilitator of empathy, as intranasal OXT studies have repeatedly been shown to improve cognitive empathy (e.g. mind reading and emotion recognition). However, OXT has not yet been shown to increase neural empathic responses to pain in others, a core aspect of affective empathy. Effects of OXT on empathy for pain are difficult to predict, because OXT evidently has pain-reducing properties. Accordingly, OXT might paradoxically decrease empathy for pain. Here, using functional neuroimaging we show robust activation in the neural circuitry of pain (insula and sensorimotor regions) when subjects observe pain in others. Crucially, this empathy-related activation in the neural circuitry of pain is strongly reduced after intranasal OXT, specifically in the left insula. OXT on the basis of our neuroimaging data thus remarkably decreases empathy for pain, but further research including behavioral measures are necessary to draw definite conclusions. PMID:25818690

  13. Oxytocin reduces neural activity in the pain circuitry when seeing pain in others.

    PubMed

    Bos, Peter A; Montoya, Estrella R; Hermans, Erno J; Keysers, Christian; van Honk, Jack

    2015-06-01

    Our empathetic abilities allow us to feel the pain of others. This phenomenon of vicarious feeling arises because the neural circuitry of feeling pain and seeing pain in others is shared. The neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) is considered a robust facilitator of empathy, as intranasal OXT studies have repeatedly been shown to improve cognitive empathy (e.g. mind reading and emotion recognition). However, OXT has not yet been shown to increase neural empathic responses to pain in others, a core aspect of affective empathy. Effects of OXT on empathy for pain are difficult to predict, because OXT evidently has pain-reducing properties. Accordingly, OXT might paradoxically decrease empathy for pain. Here, using functional neuroimaging we show robust activation in the neural circuitry of pain (insula and sensorimotor regions) when subjects observe pain in others. Crucially, this empathy-related activation in the neural circuitry of pain is strongly reduced after intranasal OXT, specifically in the left insula. OXT on the basis of our neuroimaging data thus remarkably decreases empathy for pain, but further research including behavioral measures is necessary to draw definite conclusions. PMID:25818690

  14. Compensatory Neural Activity in Response to Cognitive Fatigue

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chao; Trongnetrpunya, Amy; Samuel, Immanuel Babu Henry; Ding, Mingzhou

    2016-01-01

    Prolonged continuous performance of a cognitively demanding task induces cognitive fatigue and is associated with a time-related deterioration of objective performance, the degree of which is referred to cognitive fatigability. Although the neural underpinnings of cognitive fatigue are poorly understood, prior studies report changes in neural activity consistent with deterioration of task-related networks over time. While compensatory brain activity is reported to maintain motor task performance in the face of motor fatigue and cognitive performance in the face of other stressors (e.g., aging) and structural changes, there are no studies to date demonstrating compensatory activity for cognitive fatigue. High-density electroencephalography was recorded from human subjects during a 160 min continuous performance of a cognitive control task. While most time-varying neural activity showed a linear decline over time, we identified an evoked potential over the anterior frontal region which demonstrated an inverted U-shaped time-on-task profile. This evoked brain activity peaked between 60 and 100 min into the task and was positively associated with better behavioral performance only during this interval. Following the peak and during subsequent decline of this anterior frontal activity, the rate of performance decline also accelerated. These findings demonstrate that this anterior frontal brain activity, which is not part of the primary task-related activity at baseline, is recruited to compensate for fatigue-induced impairments in the primary task-related network, and that this compensation terminates as cognitive fatigue further progresses. These findings may be relevant to understanding individual differences in cognitive fatigability and developing interventions for clinical conditions afflicted by fatigue. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Fatigue refers to changes in objective performance and subjective effort induced by continuous task performance. We examined the neural

  15. Neural activation during successful and unsuccessful verbal learning in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Heinze, Sibylle; Sartory, Gudrun; Müller, Bernhard W; de Greiff, Armin; Forsting, Michael; Jüptner, Markus

    2006-04-01

    Successful and unsuccessful intention to learn words was assessed by means of event-related functional MRI. Eighteen patients with schizophrenia and 15 healthy control participants were scanned while being given two word lists to read and another seven to learn with immediate recall. Neural activation patterns were segregated according to whether words were subsequently recalled or forgotten and these conditions were contrasted with each other and reading. Compared to controls, patients with schizophrenia showed deficits with regard to neural recruitment of right hippocampus and of cerebellar structures during successful verbal learning. Furthermore, a reversal of activated structures was evident in the two groups: Controls showed activation of right frontal and left middle temporal structures during the unsuccessful intention to learn. During successful learning, there was additional activation of right superior parietal lobule. In contrast, patients showed activation of right superior parietal lobule during unsuccessful and successful intention to learn. There were additional frontal and left middle temporal lobe activations during successful learning. We conclude that increased parietal activity may reflect a mechanism which compensates for the lack of hippocampal and cerebellar contributions to verbal learning in schizophrenia.

  16. Neural Activation During Submaximal Contractions Seems More Reflective of Neuromuscular Ageing than Maximal Voluntary Activation

    PubMed Central

    Scaglioni, Gil; Narici, Marco V.; Martin, Alain

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed at testing the hypothesis that differences in neural activation strategy during submaximal but not maximal plantarflexions exist between young and older men. Eleven young men (YM, 26 ± 4 years) and thirteen old men (OM, 76 ± 3 years) volunteered for the investigation. Maximal voluntary torque (MVT) was 38.2%, lower (p < 0.001) in OM than in YM, while voluntary activation was equivalent (~97%). The relationship between the interpolated twitch-torque and the voluntary torque (IT-VT relationship) was composite (curvilinear + exponential) for both age-groups. However, the OM showed accentuated concavity, as attested by the occurrence of the deviation from linearity at a lower contraction intensity (OM: 54.9 vs. YM: 71.9% MVT). In conclusion, ageing does not affect the capacity to fully activate the plantar flexors during maximal performances, but it alters the activation pattern for submaximal levels of effort. The greater age-related concavity of the IT-VT relationship suggests that, during submaximal contractions, OM need to reach a level of activation higher than YM to develop an equivalent relative torque. PMID:26941638

  17. The generation effect: activating broad neural circuits during memory encoding.

    PubMed

    Rosner, Zachary A; Elman, Jeremy A; Shimamura, Arthur P

    2013-01-01

    The generation effect is a robust memory phenomenon in which actively producing material during encoding acts to improve later memory performance. In a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) analysis, we explored the neural basis of this effect. During encoding, participants generated synonyms from word-fragment cues (e.g., GARBAGE-W_ST_) or read other synonym pairs (e.g., GARBAGE-WASTE). Compared to simply reading target words, generating target words significantly improved later recognition memory performance. During encoding, this benefit was associated with a broad neural network that involved both prefrontal (inferior frontal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus) and posterior cortex (inferior temporal gyrus, lateral occipital cortex, parahippocampal gyrus, ventral posterior parietal cortex). These findings define the prefrontal-posterior cortical dynamics associated with the mnemonic benefits underlying the generation effect.

  18. Functional activity of mitochondria in cultured neural precursor cells.

    PubMed

    Plotnikov, E Yu; Marei, M V; Podgornyi, O V; Aleksandrova, M A; Zorov, D B; Sukhikh, G T

    2006-01-01

    We studied mitochondrial transmembrane potential of neural precursor cells forming neurospheres in culture. Uneven energization of mitochondria in neurosphere cells was detected. Heterogeneity of cells by the mitochondrial potential increased with neurosphere enlargement during culturing. Decrease in the mitochondrial potential in the central cells in large spheres, presumably caused by insufficient diffusion of oxygen and nutrients, can provoke their damage and death. Population of cells with high mitochondrial potential responded to addition of the nuclear dye by a decrease in mitochondrial potential, which can indicate functioning of ABCG2 complex in these cells, characteristic of undifferentiated stem cells. These data will help to create optimum conditions for culturing of neural stem cells for the maintenance of their maximum functional and proliferative activity. PMID:16929986

  19. Shared and nonshared neural networks of cognitive and affective theory-of-mind: a neuroimaging study using cartoon picture stories.

    PubMed

    Schlaffke, Lara; Lissek, Silke; Lenz, Melanie; Juckel, Georg; Schultz, Thomas; Tegenthoff, Martin; Schmidt-Wilcke, Tobias; Brüne, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Theory of mind (ToM) refers to the ability to represent one's own and others' cognitive and affective mental states. Recent imaging studies have aimed to disentangle the neural networks involved in cognitive as opposed to affective ToM, based on clinical observations that the two can functionally dissociate. Due to large differences in stimulus material and task complexity findings are, however, inconclusive. Here, we investigated the neural correlates of cognitive and affective ToM in psychologically healthy male participants (n = 39) using functional brain imaging, whereby the same set of stimuli was presented for all conditions (affective, cognitive and control), but associated with different questions prompting either a cognitive or affective ToM inference. Direct contrasts of cognitive versus affective ToM showed that cognitive ToM recruited the precuneus and cuneus, as well as regions in the temporal lobes bilaterally. Affective ToM, in contrast, involved a neural network comprising prefrontal cortical structures, as well as smaller regions in the posterior cingulate cortex and the basal ganglia. Notably, these results were complemented by a multivariate pattern analysis (leave one study subject out), yielding a classifier with an accuracy rate of more than 85% in distinguishing between the two ToM-conditions. The regions contributing most to successful classification corresponded to those found in the univariate analyses. The study contributes to the differentiation of neural patterns involved in the representation of cognitive and affective mental states of others.

  20. Neural sensing of electrical activity with stretchable microelectrode arrays.

    PubMed

    Yu, Zhe; Graudejus, Oliver; Lacour, Stéphanie P; Wagner, Sigurd; Morrison, Barclay

    2009-01-01

    Sensing neural activity within mechanically active tissues poses particular hurdles because most electrodes are much stiffer than biological tissues. As the tissue deforms, the rigid electrodes may damage the surrounding tissue. The problem is exacerbated when sensing neural activity in experimental models of traumatic brain injury (TBI) which is caused by the rapid and large deformation of brain tissue. We have developed a stretchable microelectrode array (SMEA) that can withstand large elastic deformations (>5% biaxial strain) while continuing to function. The SMEA were fabricated from thin metal conductors patterned on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and encapsulated with a photo-patternable silicone. SMEA were used to record spontaneous activity from brain slice cultures, as well as evoked activity after stimulating through SMEA electrodes. Slices of brain tissue were grown on SMEA in long-term culture and then mechanically injured with our well-characterized in vitro injury model by stretching the SMEA and the adherent culture, which was confirmed by image analysis. Because brain tissue was grown on the substrate-integrated SMEA, post-injury changes in electrophysiological function were normalized to pre-injury function since the SMEA deformed with the tissue and remained in place during mechanical stimulation. The combination of our injury model and SMEA could help elucidate mechanisms responsible for post-traumatic neuronal dysfunction in the quest for TBI therapies. The SMEA may have additional sensing applications in other mechanically active tissues such as peripheral nerve and heart. PMID:19964344

  1. A neural network model for olfactory glomerular activity prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soh, Zu; Tsuji, Toshio; Takiguchi, Noboru; Ohtake, Hisao

    2012-12-01

    Recently, the importance of odors and methods for their evaluation have seen increased emphasis, especially in the fragrance and food industries. Although odors can be characterized by their odorant components, their chemical information cannot be directly related to the flavors we perceive. Biological research has revealed that neuronal activity related to glomeruli (which form part of the olfactory system) is closely connected to odor qualities. Here we report on a neural network model of the olfactory system that can predict glomerular activity from odorant molecule structures. We also report on the learning and prediction ability of the proposed model.

  2. Minimalist Social-Affective Value for Use in Joint Action: A Neural-Computational Hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Lowe, Robert; Almér, Alexander; Lindblad, Gustaf; Gander, Pierre; Michael, John; Vesper, Cordula

    2016-01-01

    Joint Action is typically described as social interaction that requires coordination among two or more co-actors in order to achieve a common goal. In this article, we put forward a hypothesis for the existence of a neural-computational mechanism of affective valuation that may be critically exploited in Joint Action. Such a mechanism would serve to facilitate coordination between co-actors permitting a reduction of required information. Our hypothesized affective mechanism provides a value function based implementation of Associative Two-Process (ATP) theory that entails the classification of external stimuli according to outcome expectancies. This approach has been used to describe animal and human action that concerns differential outcome expectancies. Until now it has not been applied to social interaction. We describe our Affective ATP model as applied to social learning consistent with an "extended common currency" perspective in the social neuroscience literature. We contrast this to an alternative mechanism that provides an example implementation of the so-called social-specific value perspective. In brief, our Social-Affective ATP mechanism builds upon established formalisms for reinforcement learning (temporal difference learning models) nuanced to accommodate expectations (consistent with ATP theory) and extended to integrate non-social and social cues for use in Joint Action. PMID:27601989

  3. Minimalist Social-Affective Value for Use in Joint Action: A Neural-Computational Hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Lowe, Robert; Almér, Alexander; Lindblad, Gustaf; Gander, Pierre; Michael, John; Vesper, Cordula

    2016-01-01

    Joint Action is typically described as social interaction that requires coordination among two or more co-actors in order to achieve a common goal. In this article, we put forward a hypothesis for the existence of a neural-computational mechanism of affective valuation that may be critically exploited in Joint Action. Such a mechanism would serve to facilitate coordination between co-actors permitting a reduction of required information. Our hypothesized affective mechanism provides a value function based implementation of Associative Two-Process (ATP) theory that entails the classification of external stimuli according to outcome expectancies. This approach has been used to describe animal and human action that concerns differential outcome expectancies. Until now it has not been applied to social interaction. We describe our Affective ATP model as applied to social learning consistent with an "extended common currency" perspective in the social neuroscience literature. We contrast this to an alternative mechanism that provides an example implementation of the so-called social-specific value perspective. In brief, our Social-Affective ATP mechanism builds upon established formalisms for reinforcement learning (temporal difference learning models) nuanced to accommodate expectations (consistent with ATP theory) and extended to integrate non-social and social cues for use in Joint Action.

  4. Minimalist Social-Affective Value for Use in Joint Action: A Neural-Computational Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Lowe, Robert; Almér, Alexander; Lindblad, Gustaf; Gander, Pierre; Michael, John; Vesper, Cordula

    2016-01-01

    Joint Action is typically described as social interaction that requires coordination among two or more co-actors in order to achieve a common goal. In this article, we put forward a hypothesis for the existence of a neural-computational mechanism of affective valuation that may be critically exploited in Joint Action. Such a mechanism would serve to facilitate coordination between co-actors permitting a reduction of required information. Our hypothesized affective mechanism provides a value function based implementation of Associative Two-Process (ATP) theory that entails the classification of external stimuli according to outcome expectancies. This approach has been used to describe animal and human action that concerns differential outcome expectancies. Until now it has not been applied to social interaction. We describe our Affective ATP model as applied to social learning consistent with an “extended common currency” perspective in the social neuroscience literature. We contrast this to an alternative mechanism that provides an example implementation of the so-called social-specific value perspective. In brief, our Social-Affective ATP mechanism builds upon established formalisms for reinforcement learning (temporal difference learning models) nuanced to accommodate expectations (consistent with ATP theory) and extended to integrate non-social and social cues for use in Joint Action.

  5. Hormonal contraceptive use is associated with neural and affective changes in healthy young women.

    PubMed

    Lisofsky, Nina; Riediger, Michaela; Gallinat, Jürgen; Lindenberger, Ulman; Kühn, Simone

    2016-07-01

    Previous neuroimaging research has demonstrated that female gonadal hormones can alter the structure and function of adult women's brains. So far, we do not know how hormonal contraceptives affect female brain structure, in part because within-person longitudinal observations are lacking. Here, we compared 28 young women before and after three months of regular contraceptive intake with 28 naturally cycling women of comparable age. The goal was to explore within-person neural change in women using contraceptives. Neuroimaging, hormonal, cognitive, and affect data were collected at two time points for each participant. A voxel-wise whole-brain comparison of both groups revealed decreased gray matter volume in the left amygdala/anterior parahippocampal gyrus in women using contraceptives as compared to the control group. Resting-state functional connectivity of this region with the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex changed from positive to negative connectivity following contraceptive intake whereas the opposite held for the control group. An exploratory analysis revealed that gray matter volume in the left amygdala/anterior parahippocampal gyrus was associated with positive affect at the second time point. There were no systematic differences in cognitive performance change between the groups. These findings provide initial insights into effects of hormonal contraceptives on the human brain and expand previous findings on hormone-related amygdala/hippocampal complex plasticity. The affected brain regions may be related to psychological wellbeing, underlining the importance of future studies on contraceptive-induced brain changes. PMID:27109356

  6. Minimalist Social-Affective Value for Use in Joint Action: A Neural-Computational Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Lowe, Robert; Almér, Alexander; Lindblad, Gustaf; Gander, Pierre; Michael, John; Vesper, Cordula

    2016-01-01

    Joint Action is typically described as social interaction that requires coordination among two or more co-actors in order to achieve a common goal. In this article, we put forward a hypothesis for the existence of a neural-computational mechanism of affective valuation that may be critically exploited in Joint Action. Such a mechanism would serve to facilitate coordination between co-actors permitting a reduction of required information. Our hypothesized affective mechanism provides a value function based implementation of Associative Two-Process (ATP) theory that entails the classification of external stimuli according to outcome expectancies. This approach has been used to describe animal and human action that concerns differential outcome expectancies. Until now it has not been applied to social interaction. We describe our Affective ATP model as applied to social learning consistent with an “extended common currency” perspective in the social neuroscience literature. We contrast this to an alternative mechanism that provides an example implementation of the so-called social-specific value perspective. In brief, our Social-Affective ATP mechanism builds upon established formalisms for reinforcement learning (temporal difference learning models) nuanced to accommodate expectations (consistent with ATP theory) and extended to integrate non-social and social cues for use in Joint Action. PMID:27601989

  7. Intra-day signal instabilities affect decoding performance in an intracortical neural interface system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perge, János A.; Homer, Mark L.; Malik, Wasim Q.; Cash, Sydney; Eskandar, Emad; Friehs, Gerhard; Donoghue, John P.; Hochberg, Leigh R.

    2013-06-01

    Objective. Motor neural interface systems (NIS) aim to convert neural signals into motor prosthetic or assistive device control, allowing people with paralysis to regain movement or control over their immediate environment. Effector or prosthetic control can degrade if the relationship between recorded neural signals and intended motor behavior changes. Therefore, characterizing both biological and technological sources of signal variability is important for a reliable NIS. Approach. To address the frequency and causes of neural signal variability in a spike-based NIS, we analyzed within-day fluctuations in spiking activity and action potential amplitude recorded with silicon microelectrode arrays implanted in the motor cortex of three people with tetraplegia (BrainGate pilot clinical trial, IDE). Main results. 84% of the recorded units showed a statistically significant change in apparent firing rate (3.8 ± 8.71 Hz or 49% of the mean rate) across several-minute epochs of tasks performed on a single session, and 74% of the units showed a significant change in spike amplitude (3.7 ± 6.5 µV or 5.5% of mean spike amplitude). 40% of the recording sessions showed a significant correlation in the occurrence of amplitude changes across electrodes, suggesting array micro-movement. Despite the relatively frequent amplitude changes, only 15% of the observed within-day rate changes originated from recording artifacts such as spike amplitude change or electrical noise, while 85% of the rate changes most likely emerged from physiological mechanisms. Computer simulations confirmed that systematic rate changes of individual neurons could produce a directional ‘bias’ in the decoded neural cursor movements. Instability in apparent neuronal spike rates indeed yielded a directional bias in 56% of all performance assessments in participant cursor control (n = 2 participants, 108 and 20 assessments over two years), resulting in suboptimal performance in these sessions

  8. Intra-day signal instabilities affect decoding performance in an intracortical neural interface system

    PubMed Central

    Perge, János A.; Homer, Mark L.; Malik, Wasim Q.; Cash, Sydney; Eskandar, Emad; Friehs, Gerhard; Donoghue, John P.; Hochberg, Leigh R.

    2013-01-01

    Objective Motor Neural Interface Systems (NIS) aim to convert neural signals into motor prosthetic or assistive device control, allowing people with paralysis to regain movement or control over their immediate environment. Effector or prosthetic control can degrade if the relationship between recorded neural signals and intended motor behavior changes. Therefore, characterizing both biological and technological sources of signal variability is important for a reliable NIS. Approach To address the frequency and causes of neural signal variability in a spike-based NIS, we analyzed within-day fluctuations in spiking activity and action potential amplitude recorded with silicon microelectrode arrays implanted in the motor cortex of three people with tetraplegia (BrainGate pilot clinical trial, IDE). Main results Eighty-four percent of the recorded units showed a statistically significant change in apparent firing rate (3.8±8.71Hz or 49% of the mean rate) across several-minute epochs of tasks performed on a single session, and seventy-four percent of the units showed a significant change in spike amplitude (3.7±6.5μV or 5.5% of mean spike amplitude). Forty percent of the recording sessions showed a significant correlation in the occurrence of amplitude changes across electrodes, suggesting array micro-movement. Despite the relatively frequent amplitude changes, only 15% of the observed within-day rate changes originated from recording artifacts such as spike amplitude change or electrical noise, while 85% of the rate changes most likely emerged from physiological mechanisms. Computer simulations confirmed that systematic rate changes of individual neurons could produce a directional “bias” in the decoded neural cursor movements. Instability in apparent neuronal spike rates indeed yielded a directional bias in fifty-six percent of all performance assessments in participant cursor control (n=2 participants, 108 and 20 assessments over two years), resulting in

  9. Common and segregated neural substrates for automatic conceptual and affective priming as revealed by event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hongyan; Hu, Zhiguo; Peng, Danling; Yang, Yanhui; Li, Kuncheng

    2010-02-01

    The brain activity associated with automatic semantic priming has been extensively studied. Thus far there has been no prior study that directly contrasts the neural mechanisms of semantic and affective priming. The present study employed event-related fMRI to examine the common and distinct neural bases underlying conceptual and affective priming with a lexical decision task. A special type of emotional word, a dual-meaning word containing both conceptual meaning and affective meaning, was adopted as target. Short stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) (50 ms) was used to emphasize automatic processing. Fifteen participants were scanned in the present study. We found that the left middle/superior temporal gyrus was the brain region involved in both automatic conceptual and affective priming effects, suggesting general lexical-semantic processing that share in the two types of priming. The left inferior frontal gyrus and right superior temporal gyrus were found to be the conceptual-specific areas in automatic priming effect, consistent with the role of these areas in more extensive within-category semantic processes. The results also revealed that the left fusiform gyrus and left insula were the affective-specific regions in automatic priming effect, demonstrating the involvement of the left fusiform gyrus in automatic affective priming effect, and clarifying the role of the insula in emotional processing rather than conceptual processing. Despite comparable behavioral effects of automatic conceptual priming and affective priming, the present study revealed a neural dissociation of the two types of priming, as well as the shared neural bases. PMID:20018360

  10. Quantitative analysis of cardiovascular modulation in respiratory neural activity.

    PubMed

    Dick, Thomas E; Morris, Kendall F

    2004-05-01

    We propose the 'delta(2)-statistic' for assessing the magnitude and statistical significance of arterial pulse-modulated activity of single neurones and present the results of applying this tool to medullary respiratory-modulated units. This analytical tool is a modification of the eta(2)-statistic and, consequently, based on the analysis of variance. The eta(2)-statistic reflects the consistency of respiratory-modulated activity on a cycle-by-cycle basis. However, directly applying this test to activity during the cardiac cycle proved ineffective because subjects-by-treatments matrices did not contain enough 'information'. We increased information by dividing the cardiac cycle into fewer bins, excluding cycles without activity and summing activity over multiple cycles. The analysed neuronal activity was an existing data set examining the neural control of respiration and cough. Neurones were recorded in the nuclei of the solitary tracts, and in the rostral and caudal ventral respiratory groups of decerebrate, neuromuscularly blocked, ventilated cats (n= 19). Two hundred of 246 spike trains were respiratory modulated; of these 53% were inspiratory (I), 36.5% expiratory (E), 6% IE phase spanning and 4.5% EI phase spanning and responsive to airway stimulation. Nearly half (n= 96/200) of the respiratory-modulated units were significantly pulse modulated and 13 were highly modulated with delta(2) values exceeding 0.3. In 10 of these highly modulated units, eta(2) values were greater than 0.3 and all 13 had, at least, a portion of their activity during expiration. We conclude that cardiorespiratory interaction is reciprocal; in addition to respiratory-modulated activity in a subset of neuronal activity patterns controlling the cardiovascular system, pulse-modulated activity exists in a subset of neuronal activity patterns controlling the respiratory system. Thus, cardio-ventilatory coupling apparent in respiratory motor output is evident and, perhaps, derived from the

  11. Neural mechanisms by which gravitational stimuli and stress affect the secretion of renin and other hormones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ganong, William F.

    1987-01-01

    The present goal is to determine by the production of discrete lesions the parts of the hypothalamus and brainstem that are involved in serotonin-mediated increases in renin secretion. A variety of stimuli which act in different ways to increase renin stimuli were developed and standardized. The experiments with p-chloroamphetamine (PCA) demonstrated that there is a serotonergic pathway which projects from the dorsal raphe nuclei to the paraventricular nuclei and the vetromedial nuclei of the hypothalamus; that projection from paraventricular nuclei to the brainstem and spinal cord may be oxytocinergic; and that the pathway from the spinal cord to the renin secreting cells is sympathetic. The demonstration that paraventicular lesions lower circulating renin substrate is important because it raises the possibility that substrate secretion is under neural control, either via the pituitary or by direct neural pathways. The discovery that lesions of the ventromedial nuclei appear to abolish the increase in renin secretion produced by many different stimuli without affecting the concentration of renin substrate in the plasma makes the position of the hypothalamus in the regulation of fluid and electrolyte balance more prominent than previously suspected.

  12. Neural activity associated with enhanced facial attractiveness by cosmetics use.

    PubMed

    Ueno, Aya; Ito, Ayahito; Kawasaki, Iori; Kawachi, Yousuke; Yoshida, Kazuki; Murakami, Yui; Sakai, Shinya; Iijima, Toshio; Matsue, Yoshihiko; Fujii, Toshikatsu

    2014-04-30

    Previous psychological studies have shown that make-up enhances facial attractiveness. Although neuroimaging evidence indicates that the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) shows greater activity for faces of attractive people than for those of unattractive people, there is no direct evidence that the OFC also shows greater activity for the face of an individual wearing make-up than for the same face without make-up. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated neural activity while subjects viewed 144 photographs of the same faces with and without make-up (48 with make-up, 48 without make-up, and 48 scrambled photographs) and assigned these faces an attractiveness rating. The behavioral data showed that the faces with make-up were rated as more attractive than those without make-up. The imaging data revealed that the left OFC and the right hippocampus showed greater activity for faces with make-up than for those without make-up. Furthermore, the activities of the right anterior cingulate cortex, left hippocampus, and left OFC increased with increasing facial attractiveness resulting from cosmetics use. These results provide direct evidence of the neural underpinnings of cosmetically enhanced facial attractiveness.

  13. Neural correlates of active avoidance behavior in superior colliculus

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Jeremy D.; Castro-Alamancos, Manuel A.

    2010-01-01

    Active avoidance of harmful situations seems highly adaptive, but the underlying neural mechanisms are largely unknown. Rats can effectively use the superior colliculus during active avoidance to detect a salient whisker conditioned stimulus (WCS) that signals an aversive event. Here, we recorded unit and field potential activity in the intermediate layers of the superior colliculus of rats during active avoidance behavior. During the period preceding the onset of the WCS, avoids are associated with a higher firing rate than escapes (unsuccessful avoids), indicating that a prepared superior colliculus is more likely to detect the WCS and lead to an avoid. Moreover, during the WCS, a robust ramping up of overall firing rate is observed for trials leading to avoids. The firing rate ramping is not due to shuttling, and may serve to drive downstream circuits to avoid. Therefore, a robust neural correlate of active avoidance behavior is found in the superior colliculus, emphasizing its role in the detection of salient sensory signals that require immediate action. PMID:20573897

  14. Static stretch affects neural stem cell differentiation in an extracellular matrix-dependent manner.

    PubMed

    Arulmoli, Janahan; Pathak, Medha M; McDonnell, Lisa P; Nourse, Jamison L; Tombola, Francesco; Earthman, James C; Flanagan, Lisa A

    2015-01-01

    Neural stem and progenitor cell (NSPC) fate is strongly influenced by mechanotransduction as modulation of substrate stiffness affects lineage choice. Other types of mechanical stimuli, such as stretch (tensile strain), occur during CNS development and trauma, but their consequences for NSPC differentiation have not been reported. We delivered a 10% static equibiaxial stretch to NSPCs and examined effects on differentiation. We found static stretch specifically impacts NSPC differentiation into oligodendrocytes, but not neurons or astrocytes, and this effect is dependent on particular extracellular matrix (ECM)-integrin linkages. Generation of oligodendrocytes from NSPCs was reduced on laminin, an outcome likely mediated by the α6 laminin-binding integrin, whereas similar effects were not observed for NSPCs on fibronectin. Our data demonstrate a direct role for tensile strain in dictating the lineage choice of NSPCs and indicate the dependence of this phenomenon on specific substrate materials, which should be taken into account for the design of biomaterials for NSPC transplantation. PMID:25686615

  15. Static stretch affects neural stem cell differentiation in an extracellular matrix-dependent manner

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arulmoli, Janahan; Pathak, Medha M.; McDonnell, Lisa P.; Nourse, Jamison L.; Tombola, Francesco; Earthman, James C.; Flanagan, Lisa A.

    2015-02-01

    Neural stem and progenitor cell (NSPC) fate is strongly influenced by mechanotransduction as modulation of substrate stiffness affects lineage choice. Other types of mechanical stimuli, such as stretch (tensile strain), occur during CNS development and trauma, but their consequences for NSPC differentiation have not been reported. We delivered a 10% static equibiaxial stretch to NSPCs and examined effects on differentiation. We found static stretch specifically impacts NSPC differentiation into oligodendrocytes, but not neurons or astrocytes, and this effect is dependent on particular extracellular matrix (ECM)-integrin linkages. Generation of oligodendrocytes from NSPCs was reduced on laminin, an outcome likely mediated by the α6 laminin-binding integrin, whereas similar effects were not observed for NSPCs on fibronectin. Our data demonstrate a direct role for tensile strain in dictating the lineage choice of NSPCs and indicate the dependence of this phenomenon on specific substrate materials, which should be taken into account for the design of biomaterials for NSPC transplantation.

  16. Manipulating neural activity in physiologically classified neurons: triumphs and challenges.

    PubMed

    Gore, Felicity; Schwartz, Edmund C; Salzman, C Daniel

    2015-09-19

    Understanding brain function requires knowing both how neural activity encodes information and how this activity generates appropriate responses. Electrophysiological, imaging and immediate early gene immunostaining studies have been instrumental in identifying and characterizing neurons that respond to different sensory stimuli, events and motor actions. Here we highlight approaches that have manipulated the activity of physiologically classified neurons to determine their role in the generation of behavioural responses. Previous experiments have often exploited the functional architecture observed in many cortical areas, where clusters of neurons share response properties. However, many brain structures do not exhibit such functional architecture. Instead, neurons with different response properties are anatomically intermingled. Emerging genetic approaches have enabled the identification and manipulation of neurons that respond to specific stimuli despite the lack of discernable anatomical organization. These approaches have advanced understanding of the circuits mediating sensory perception, learning and memory, and the generation of behavioural responses by providing causal evidence linking neural response properties to appropriate behavioural output. However, significant challenges remain for understanding cognitive processes that are probably mediated by neurons with more complex physiological response properties. Currently available strategies may prove inadequate for determining how activity in these neurons is causally related to cognitive behaviour.

  17. Manipulating neural activity in physiologically classified neurons: triumphs and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Gore, Felicity; Schwartz, Edmund C.; Salzman, C. Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Understanding brain function requires knowing both how neural activity encodes information and how this activity generates appropriate responses. Electrophysiological, imaging and immediate early gene immunostaining studies have been instrumental in identifying and characterizing neurons that respond to different sensory stimuli, events and motor actions. Here we highlight approaches that have manipulated the activity of physiologically classified neurons to determine their role in the generation of behavioural responses. Previous experiments have often exploited the functional architecture observed in many cortical areas, where clusters of neurons share response properties. However, many brain structures do not exhibit such functional architecture. Instead, neurons with different response properties are anatomically intermingled. Emerging genetic approaches have enabled the identification and manipulation of neurons that respond to specific stimuli despite the lack of discernable anatomical organization. These approaches have advanced understanding of the circuits mediating sensory perception, learning and memory, and the generation of behavioural responses by providing causal evidence linking neural response properties to appropriate behavioural output. However, significant challenges remain for understanding cognitive processes that are probably mediated by neurons with more complex physiological response properties. Currently available strategies may prove inadequate for determining how activity in these neurons is causally related to cognitive behaviour. PMID:26240431

  18. Supervised learning for neural manifold using spatiotemporal brain activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuo, Po-Chih; Chen, Yong-Sheng; Chen, Li-Fen

    2015-12-01

    Objective. Determining the means by which perceived stimuli are compactly represented in the human brain is a difficult task. This study aimed to develop techniques for the construction of the neural manifold as a representation of visual stimuli. Approach. We propose a supervised locally linear embedding method to construct the embedded manifold from brain activity, taking into account similarities between corresponding stimuli. In our experiments, photographic portraits were used as visual stimuli and brain activity was calculated from magnetoencephalographic data using a source localization method. Main results. The results of 10 × 10-fold cross-validation revealed a strong correlation between manifolds of brain activity and the orientation of faces in the presented images, suggesting that high-level information related to image content can be revealed in the brain responses represented in the manifold. Significance. Our experiments demonstrate that the proposed method is applicable to investigation into the inherent patterns of brain activity.

  19. Infrared neural stimulation fails to evoke neural activity in the deaf guinea pig cochlea.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Alexander C; Fallon, James B; Wise, Andrew K; Wade, Scott A; Shepherd, Robert K; Stoddart, Paul R

    2015-06-01

    At present there is some debate as to the processes by which infrared neural stimulation (INS) activates neurons in the cochlea, as the lasers used for INS can potentially generate a range of secondary stimuli e.g. an acoustic stimulus is produced when the light is absorbed by water. To clarify whether INS in the cochlea requires functioning hair cells and to explore the potential relevance to cochlear implants, experiments using INS were performed in the cochleae of both normal hearing and profoundly deaf guinea pigs. A response to laser stimulation was readily evoked in normal hearing cochlea. However, no response was evoked in any profoundly deaf cochleae, for either acute or chronic deafening, contrary to previous work where a response was observed after acute deafening with ototoxic drugs. A neural response to electrical stimulation was readily evoked in all cochleae after deafening. The absence of a response from optical stimuli in profoundly deaf cochleae suggests that the response from INS in the cochlea is hair cell mediated. PMID:25796297

  20. Brain Activity, Personality Traits and Affect: Electrocortical Activity in Reaction to Affective Film Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Makvand Hosseini, Sh.; Azad Fallah, P.; Rasoolzadeh Tabatabaei, S. K.; Ghannadyan Ladani, S. H.; Heise, C.

    We studied the patterns of activation over the cerebral cortex in reaction to affective film stimuli in four groups of extroverts, introverts, neurotics and emotionally stables. Measures of extraversion and neuroticism were collected and resting EEG was recorded from 40 right handed undergraduate female students (19-23) on one occasion for five 30s periods in baseline condition and in affective states. Mean log-transformed absolute alpha power was extracted from 12 electrode sites and analyzed. Patterns of activation were different in personality groups. Different patterns of asymmetries were observed in personality groups in reaction to affective stimuli. Results were partly consistent with approach and withdrawal model and provided supportive evidence for the role of right frontal asymmetry in negative affects in two groups (introverts and emotionally stables) as well as the role of right central asymmetry (increase on right and decrease on left) in active affective states (anxiety and happiness) in all personality groups. Results were also emphasized on the role of decrease activity relative to baseline in cortical regions (bilaterally in frontal and unilaterally in left parietal and temporal regions) in moderating of positive and negative emotion.

  1. Estimation of spatiotemporal neural activity using radial basis function networks.

    PubMed

    Anderson, R W; Das, S; Keller, E L

    1998-12-01

    We report a method using radial basis function (RBF) networks to estimate the time evolution of population activity in topologically organized neural structures from single-neuron recordings. This is an important problem in neuroscience research, as such estimates may provide insights into systems-level function of these structures. Since single-unit neural data tends to be unevenly sampled and highly variable under similar behavioral conditions, obtaining such estimates is a difficult task. In particular, a class of cells in the superior colliculus called buildup neurons can have very narrow regions of saccade vectors for which they discharge at high rates but very large surround regions over which they discharge at low, but not zero, levels. Estimating the dynamic movement fields for these cells for two spatial dimensions at closely spaced timed intervals is a difficult problem, and no general method has been described that can be applied to all buildup cells. Estimation of individual collicular cells' spatiotemporal movement fields is a prerequisite for obtaining reliable two-dimensional estimates of the population activity on the collicular motor map during saccades. Therefore, we have developed several computational-geometry-based algorithms that regularize the data before computing a surface estimation using RBF networks. The method is then expanded to the problem of estimating simultaneous spatiotemporal activity occurring across the superior colliculus during a single movement (the inverse problem). In principle, this methodology could be applied to any neural structure with a regular, two-dimensional organization, provided a sufficient spatial distribution of sampled neurons is available.

  2. Tools for resolving functional activity and connectivity within intact neural circuits.

    PubMed

    Jennings, Joshua H; Stuber, Garret D

    2014-01-01

    Mammalian neural circuits are sophisticated biological systems that choreograph behavioral processes vital for survival. While the inherent complexity of discrete neural circuits has proven difficult to decipher, many parallel methodological developments promise to help delineate the function and connectivity of molecularly defined neural circuits. Here, we review recent technological advances designed to precisely monitor and manipulate neural circuit activity. We propose a holistic, multifaceted approach for unraveling how behavioral states are manifested through the cooperative interactions between discrete neurocircuit elements.

  3. Multifractal detrended fluctuation analysis of optogenetic modulation of neural activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, S.; Gu, L.; Ghosh, N.; Mohanty, S. K.

    2013-02-01

    Here, we introduce a computational procedure to examine whether optogenetically activated neuronal firing recordings could be characterized as multifractal series. Optogenetics is emerging as a valuable experimental tool and a promising approach for studying a variety of neurological disorders in animal models. The spiking patterns from cortical region of the brain of optogenetically-stimulated transgenic mice were analyzed using a sophisticated fluctuation analysis method known as multifractal detrended fluctuation analysis (MFDFA). We observed that the optogenetically-stimulated neural firings are consistent with a multifractal process. Further, we used MFDFA to monitor the effect of chemically induced pain (formalin injection) and optogenetic treatment used to relieve the pain. In this case, dramatic changes in parameters characterizing a multifractal series were observed. Both the generalized Hurst exponent and width of singularity spectrum effectively differentiates the neural activities during control and pain induction phases. The quantitative nature of the analysis equips us with better measures to quantify pain. Further, it provided a measure for effectiveness of the optogenetic stimulation in inhibiting pain. MFDFA-analysis of spiking data from other deep regions of the brain also turned out to be multifractal in nature, with subtle differences in the parameters during pain-induction by formalin injection and inhibition by optogenetic stimulation. Characterization of neuronal firing patterns using MFDFA will lead to better understanding of neuronal response to optogenetic activation and overall circuitry involved in the process.

  4. Artificial neural network prediction of antisense oligodeoxynucleotide activity.

    PubMed

    Giddings, Michael C; Shah, Atul A; Freier, Sue; Atkins, John F; Gesteland, Raymond F; Matveeva, Olga V

    2002-10-01

    An mRNA transcript contains many potential antisense oligodeoxynucleotide target sites. Identification of the most efficacious targets remains an important and challenging problem. Building on separate work that revealed a strong correlation between the inclusion of short sequence motifs and the activity level of an oligo, we have developed a predictive artificial neural network system for mapping tetranucleotide motif content to antisense oligo activity. Trained for high-specificity prediction, the system has been cross-validated against a database of 348 oligos from the literature and a larger proprietary database of 908 oligos. In cross- validation tests the system identified effective oligos (i.e. oligos capable of reducing target mRNA expression to <25% that of the control) with 53% accuracy, in contrast to the <10% success rates commonly reported for trial-and-error oligo selection, suggesting a possible 5-fold reduction in the in vivo screening required to find an active oligo. We have implemented a web interface to a trained neural network. Given an RNA transcript as input, the system identifies the most likely oligo targets and provides estimates of the probabilities that oligos targeted against these sites will be effective. PMID:12364609

  5. Defective neuroepithelial cell cohesion affects tangential branchiomotor neuron migration in the zebrafish neural tube.

    PubMed

    Stockinger, Petra; Maître, Jean-Léon; Heisenberg, Carl-Philipp

    2011-11-01

    Facial branchiomotor neurons (FBMNs) in zebrafish and mouse embryonic hindbrain undergo a characteristic tangential migration from rhombomere (r) 4, where they are born, to r6/7. Cohesion among neuroepithelial cells (NCs) has been suggested to function in FBMN migration by inhibiting FBMNs positioned in the basal neuroepithelium such that they move apically between NCs towards the midline of the neuroepithelium instead of tangentially along the basal side of the neuroepithelium towards r6/7. However, direct experimental evaluation of this hypothesis is still lacking. Here, we have used a combination of biophysical cell adhesion measurements and high-resolution time-lapse microscopy to determine the role of NC cohesion in FBMN migration. We show that reducing NC cohesion by interfering with Cadherin 2 (Cdh2) activity results in FBMNs positioned at the basal side of the neuroepithelium moving apically towards the neural tube midline instead of tangentially towards r6/7. In embryos with strongly reduced NC cohesion, ectopic apical FBMN movement frequently results in fusion of the bilateral FBMN clusters over the apical midline of the neural tube. By contrast, reducing cohesion among FBMNs by interfering with Contactin 2 (Cntn2) expression in these cells has little effect on apical FBMN movement, but reduces the fusion of the bilateral FBMN clusters in embryos with strongly diminished NC cohesion. These data provide direct experimental evidence that NC cohesion functions in tangential FBMN migration by restricting their apical movement.

  6. Temporal dynamics of a homeostatic pathway controlling neural network activity

    PubMed Central

    Bateup, Helen S.; Denefrio, Cassandra L.; Johnson, Caroline A.; Saulnier, Jessica L.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2013-01-01

    Neurons use a variety of mechanisms to homeostatically regulate neural network activity in order to maintain firing in a bounded range. One such process involves the bi-directional modulation of excitatory synaptic drive in response to chronic changes in network activity. Down-scaling of excitatory synapses in response to high activity requires Arc-dependent endocytosis of glutamate receptors. However, the temporal dynamics and signaling pathways regulating Arc during homeostatic plasticity are not well understood. Here we determine the relative contribution of transcriptional and translational control in the regulation of Arc, the signaling pathways responsible for the activity-dependent production of Arc, and the time course of these signaling events as they relate to the homeostatic adjustment of network activity in hippocampal neurons. We find that an ERK1/2-dependent transcriptional pathway active within 1–2 h of up-regulated network activity induces Arc leading to a restoration of network spiking rates within 12 h. Under basal and low activity conditions, specialized mechanisms are in place to rapidly degrade Arc mRNA and protein such that they have half-lives of less than 1 h. In addition, we find that while mTOR signaling is regulated by network activity on a similar time scale, mTOR-dependent translational control is not a major regulator of Arc production or degradation suggesting that the signaling pathways underlying homeostatic plasticity are distinct from those mediating synapse-specific forms of synaptic depression. PMID:24065881

  7. Sensory-related neural activity regulates the structure of vascular networks in the cerebral cortex

    PubMed Central

    Lacoste, Baptiste; Comin, Cesar H.; Ben-Zvi, Ayal; Kaeser, Pascal S.; Xu, Xiaoyin; Costa, Luciano da F.; Gu, Chenghua

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Neurovascular interactions are essential for proper brain function. While the effect of neural activity on cerebral blood flow has been extensively studied, whether neural activity influences vascular patterning remains elusive. Here, we demonstrate that neural activity promotes the formation of vascular networks in the early postnatal mouse barrel cortex. Using a combination of genetics, imaging, and computational tools to allow simultaneous analysis of neuronal and vascular components, we found that vascular density and branching were decreased in the barrel cortex when sensory input was reduced by either a complete deafferentation, a genetic impairment of neurotransmitter release at thalamocortical synapses, or a selective reduction of sensory-related neural activity by whisker plucking. In contrast, enhancement of neural activity by whisker stimulation led to an increase in vascular density and branching. The finding that neural activity is necessary and sufficient to trigger alterations of vascular networks reveals a novel feature of neurovascular interactions. PMID:25155955

  8. The neural mechanisms underlying the aging-related enhancement of positive affects: electrophysiological evidences

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Xianxin; Yang, Jiemin; Cai, AYan; Ding, XinSheng; Liu, Wenwen; Li, Hong; Yuan, JiaJin

    2015-01-01

    Background: Previous studies reported that old adults, relative to young adults, showed improvement of emotional stability and increased experiences of positive affects. Methods: In order to better understand the neural underpinnings behind the aging-related enhancement of positive affects, it is necessary to investigate whether old and young adults differ in the threshold of eliciting positive or negative emotional reactions. However, no studies have examined emotional reaction differences between old and young adults by manipulating the intensity of emotional stimuli to date. To clarify this issue, the present study examined the impact of aging on the brain’s susceptibility to affective pictures of varying emotional intensities. We recorded event-related potentials (ERP) for highly negative (HN), mildly negative (MN) and neutral pictures in the negative experimental block; and for highly positive (HP), mildly positive (MP) and neutral pictures in the positive experimental block, when young and old adults were required to count the number of pictures, irrespective of the emotionality of the pictures. Results: Event-related potentials results showed that LPP (late positive potentials) amplitudes were larger for HN and MN stimuli compared to neutral stimuli in young adults, but not in old adults. By contrast, old adults displayed larger LPP amplitudes for HP and MP relative to neutral stimuli, while these effects were absent for young adults. In addition, old adults reported more frequent perception of positive stimuli and less frequent perception of negative stimuli than young adults. The post-experiment stimulus assessment showed more positive ratings of Neutral and MP stimuli, and reduced arousal ratings of HN stimuli in old compared to young adults. Conclusion: These results suggest that old adults are more resistant to the impact of negative stimuli, while they are equipped with enhanced attentional bias for positive stimuli. The implications of these results

  9. Copper is an endogenous modulator of neural circuit spontaneous activity

    PubMed Central

    Dodani, Sheel C.; Firl, Alana; Chan, Jefferson; Nam, Christine I.; Aron, Allegra T.; Onak, Carl S.; Ramos-Torres, Karla M.; Paek, Jaeho; Webster, Corey M.; Feller, Marla B.; Chang, Christopher J.

    2014-01-01

    For reasons that remain insufficiently understood, the brain requires among the highest levels of metals in the body for normal function. The traditional paradigm for this organ and others is that fluxes of alkali and alkaline earth metals are required for signaling, but transition metals are maintained in static, tightly bound reservoirs for metabolism and protection against oxidative stress. Here we show that copper is an endogenous modulator of spontaneous activity, a property of functional neural circuitry. Using Copper Fluor-3 (CF3), a new fluorescent Cu+ sensor for one- and two-photon imaging, we show that neurons and neural tissue maintain basal stores of loosely bound copper that can be attenuated by chelation, which define a labile copper pool. Targeted disruption of these labile copper stores by acute chelation or genetic knockdown of the CTR1 (copper transporter 1) copper channel alters the spatiotemporal properties of spontaneous activity in developing hippocampal and retinal circuits. The data identify an essential role for copper neuronal function and suggest broader contributions of this transition metal to cell signaling. PMID:25378701

  10. Neural activity in the hippocampus during conflict resolution.

    PubMed

    Sakimoto, Yuya; Okada, Kana; Hattori, Minoru; Takeda, Kozue; Sakata, Shogo

    2013-01-15

    This study examined configural association theory and conflict resolution models in relation to hippocampal neural activity during positive patterning tasks. According to configural association theory, the hippocampus is important for responses to compound stimuli in positive patterning tasks. In contrast, according to the conflict resolution model, the hippocampus is important for responses to single stimuli in positive patterning tasks. We hypothesized that if configural association theory is applicable, and not the conflict resolution model, the hippocampal theta power should be increased when compound stimuli are presented. If, on the other hand, the conflict resolution model is applicable, but not configural association theory, then the hippocampal theta power should be increased when single stimuli are presented. If both models are valid and applicable in the positive patterning task, we predict that the hippocampal theta power should be increased by presentation of both compound and single stimuli during the positive patterning task. To examine our hypotheses, we measured hippocampal theta power in rats during a positive patterning task. The results showed that hippocampal theta power increased during the presentation of a single stimulus, but did not increase during the presentation of a compound stimulus. This finding suggests that the conflict resolution model is more applicable than the configural association theory for describing neural activity during positive patterning tasks. PMID:22985685

  11. Copper is an endogenous modulator of neural circuit spontaneous activity.

    PubMed

    Dodani, Sheel C; Firl, Alana; Chan, Jefferson; Nam, Christine I; Aron, Allegra T; Onak, Carl S; Ramos-Torres, Karla M; Paek, Jaeho; Webster, Corey M; Feller, Marla B; Chang, Christopher J

    2014-11-18

    For reasons that remain insufficiently understood, the brain requires among the highest levels of metals in the body for normal function. The traditional paradigm for this organ and others is that fluxes of alkali and alkaline earth metals are required for signaling, but transition metals are maintained in static, tightly bound reservoirs for metabolism and protection against oxidative stress. Here we show that copper is an endogenous modulator of spontaneous activity, a property of functional neural circuitry. Using Copper Fluor-3 (CF3), a new fluorescent Cu(+) sensor for one- and two-photon imaging, we show that neurons and neural tissue maintain basal stores of loosely bound copper that can be attenuated by chelation, which define a labile copper pool. Targeted disruption of these labile copper stores by acute chelation or genetic knockdown of the CTR1 (copper transporter 1) copper channel alters the spatiotemporal properties of spontaneous activity in developing hippocampal and retinal circuits. The data identify an essential role for copper neuronal function and suggest broader contributions of this transition metal to cell signaling.

  12. Neural activity in the hippocampus during conflict resolution.

    PubMed

    Sakimoto, Yuya; Okada, Kana; Hattori, Minoru; Takeda, Kozue; Sakata, Shogo

    2013-01-15

    This study examined configural association theory and conflict resolution models in relation to hippocampal neural activity during positive patterning tasks. According to configural association theory, the hippocampus is important for responses to compound stimuli in positive patterning tasks. In contrast, according to the conflict resolution model, the hippocampus is important for responses to single stimuli in positive patterning tasks. We hypothesized that if configural association theory is applicable, and not the conflict resolution model, the hippocampal theta power should be increased when compound stimuli are presented. If, on the other hand, the conflict resolution model is applicable, but not configural association theory, then the hippocampal theta power should be increased when single stimuli are presented. If both models are valid and applicable in the positive patterning task, we predict that the hippocampal theta power should be increased by presentation of both compound and single stimuli during the positive patterning task. To examine our hypotheses, we measured hippocampal theta power in rats during a positive patterning task. The results showed that hippocampal theta power increased during the presentation of a single stimulus, but did not increase during the presentation of a compound stimulus. This finding suggests that the conflict resolution model is more applicable than the configural association theory for describing neural activity during positive patterning tasks.

  13. Afferent vagal nerve stimulation resets baroreflex neural arc and inhibits sympathetic nerve activity

    PubMed Central

    Saku, Keita; Kishi, Takuya; Sakamoto, Kazuo; Hosokawa, Kazuya; Sakamoto, Takafumi; Murayama, Yoshinori; Kakino, Takamori; Ikeda, Masataka; Ide, Tomomi; Sunagawa, Kenji

    2014-01-01

    Abstract It has been established that vagal nerve stimulation (VNS) benefits patients and/or animals with heart failure. However, the impact of VNS on sympathetic nerve activity (SNA) remains unknown. In this study, we investigated how vagal afferent stimulation (AVNS) impacts baroreflex control of SNA. In 12 anesthetized Sprague–Dawley rats, we controlled the pressure in isolated bilateral carotid sinuses (CSP), and measured splanchnic SNA and arterial pressure (AP). Under a constant CSP, increasing the voltage of AVNS dose dependently decreased SNA and AP. The averaged maximal inhibition of SNA was ‐28.0 ± 10.3%. To evaluate the dynamic impacts of AVNS on SNA, we performed random AVNS using binary white noise sequences, and identified the transfer function from AVNS to SNA and that from SNA to AP. We also identified transfer functions of the native baroreflex from CSP to SNA (neural arc) and from SNA to AP (peripheral arc). The transfer function from AVNS to SNA strikingly resembled the baroreflex neural arc and the transfer functions of SNA to AP were indistinguishable whether we perturbed ANVS or CSP, indicating that they likely share common central and peripheral neural mechanisms. To examine the impact of AVNS on baroreflex, we changed CSP stepwise and measured SNA and AP responses with or without AVNS. AVNS resets the sigmoidal neural arc downward, but did not affect the linear peripheral arc. In conclusion, AVNS resets the baroreflex neural arc and induces sympathoinhibition in the same manner as the control of SNA and AP by the native baroreflex. PMID:25194023

  14. Fast calcium sensor proteins for monitoring neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Badura, Aleksandra; Sun, Xiaonan Richard; Giovannucci, Andrea; Lynch, Laura A.; Wang, Samuel S.-H.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract. A major goal of the BRAIN Initiative is the development of technologies to monitor neuronal network activity during active information processing. Toward this goal, genetically encoded calcium indicator proteins have become widely used for reporting activity in preparations ranging from invertebrates to awake mammals. However, slow response times, the narrow sensitivity range of Ca2+ and in some cases, poor signal-to-noise ratio still limit their usefulness. Here, we review recent improvements in the field of neural activity-sensitive probe design with a focus on the GCaMP family of calcium indicator proteins. In this context, we present our newly developed Fast-GCaMPs, which have up to 4-fold accelerated off-responses compared with the next-fastest GCaMP, GCaMP6f. Fast-GCaMPs were designed by destabilizing the association of the hydrophobic pocket of calcium-bound calmodulin with the RS20 binding domain, an intramolecular interaction that protects the green fluorescent protein chromophore. Fast-GCaMP6f-RS06 and Fast-GCaMP6f-RS09 have rapid off-responses in stopped-flow fluorimetry, in neocortical brain slices, and in the intact cerebellum in vivo. Fast-GCaMP6f variants should be useful for tracking action potentials closely spaced in time, and for following neural activity in fast-changing compartments, such as axons and dendrites. Finally, we discuss strategies that may allow tracking of a wider range of neuronal firing rates and improve spike detection. PMID:25558464

  15. Rejuvenation of MPTP-induced human neural precursor cell senescence by activating autophagy.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Liang; Dong, Chuanming; Sun, Chenxi; Ma, Rongjie; Yang, Danjing; Zhu, Hongwen; Xu, Jun

    2015-08-21

    Aging of neural stem cell, which can affect brain homeostasis, may be caused by many cellular mechanisms. Autophagy dysfunction was found in aged and neurodegenerative brains. However, little is known about the relationship between autophagy and human neural stem cell (hNSC) aging. The present study used 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) to treat neural precursor cells (NPCs) derived from human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line H9 and investigate related molecular mechanisms involved in this process. MPTP-treated NPCs were found to undergo premature senescence [determined by increased senescence-associated-β-galactosidase (SA-β-gal) activity, elevated intracellular reactive oxygen species level, and decreased proliferation] and were associated with impaired autophagy. Additionally, the cellular senescence phenotypes were manifested at the molecular level by a significant increase in p21 and p53 expression, a decrease in SOD2 expression, and a decrease in expression of some key autophagy-related genes such as Atg5, Atg7, Atg12, and Beclin 1. Furthermore, we found that the senescence-like phenotype of MPTP-treated hNPCs was rejuvenated through treatment with a well-known autophagy enhancer rapamycin, which was blocked by suppression of essential autophagy gene Beclin 1. Taken together, these findings reveal the critical role of autophagy in the process of hNSC aging, and this process can be reversed by activating autophagy. PMID:26159917

  16. Rejuvenation of MPTP-induced human neural precursor cell senescence by activating autophagy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhu, Liang; Dong, Chuanming; Sun, Chenxi; Ma, Rongjie; Yang, Danjing; Zhu, Hongwen; Xu, Jun

    2015-08-21

    Aging of neural stem cell, which can affect brain homeostasis, may be caused by many cellular mechanisms. Autophagy dysfunction was found in aged and neurodegenerative brains. However, little is known about the relationship between autophagy and human neural stem cell (hNSC) aging. The present study used 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) to treat neural precursor cells (NPCs) derived from human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line H9 and investigate related molecular mechanisms involved in this process. MPTP-treated NPCs were found to undergo premature senescence [determined by increased senescence-associated-β-galactosidase (SA-β-gal) activity, elevated intracellular reactive oxygen species level, and decreased proliferation] and were associated with impaired autophagy. Additionally, the cellular senescence phenotypes were manifested at the molecular level by a significant increase in p21 and p53 expression, a decrease in SOD2 expression, and a decrease in expression of some key autophagy-related genes such as Atg5, Atg7, Atg12, and Beclin 1. Furthermore, we found that the senescence-like phenotype of MPTP-treated hNPCs was rejuvenated through treatment with a well-known autophagy enhancer rapamycin, which was blocked by suppression of essential autophagy gene Beclin 1. Taken together, these findings reveal the critical role of autophagy in the process of hNSC aging, and this process can be reversed by activating autophagy. - Highlights: • We successfully establish hESC-derived neural precursor cells. • MPTP treatment induced senescence-like state in hESC-derived NPCs. • MPTP treatment induced impaired autophagy of hESC-derived NPCs. • MPTP-induced hESC-derived NPC senescence was rejuvenated by activating autophagy.

  17. Visualization and Manipulation of Neural Activity in the Developing Vertebrate Nervous System

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jiayi; Ackman, James B.; Dhande, Onkar S.; Crair, Michael C.

    2011-01-01

    Neural activity during vertebrate development has been unambiguously shown to play a critical role in sculpting circuit formation and function. Patterned neural activity in various parts of the developing nervous system is thought to modulate neurite outgrowth, axon targeting, and synapse refinement. The nature and role of patterned neural activity during development has been classically studied with in vitro preparations using pharmacological manipulations. In this review we discuss newly available and developing molecular–genetic tools for the visualization and manipulation of neural activity patterns specifically during development. PMID:22121343

  18. Conditions of activity bubble uniqueness in dynamic neural fields.

    PubMed

    Mikhailova, Inna; Goerick, Christian

    2005-02-01

    Dynamic neural fields (DNFs) offer a rich spectrum of dynamic properties like hysteresis, spatiotemporal information integration, and coexistence of multiple attractors. These properties make DNFs more and more popular in implementations of sensorimotor loops for autonomous systems. Applications often imply that DNFs should have only one compact region of firing neurons (activity bubble), whereas the rest of the field should not fire (e.g., if the field represents motor commands). In this article we prove the conditions of activity bubble uniqueness in the case of locally symmetric input bubbles. The qualitative condition on inhomogeneous inputs used in earlier work on DNFs is transfered to a quantitative condition of a balance between the internal dynamics and the input. The mathematical analysis is carried out for the two-dimensional case with methods that can be extended to more than two dimensions. The article concludes with an example of how our theoretical results facilitate the practical use of DNFs. PMID:15685393

  19. Neural oscillations: beta band activity across motor networks.

    PubMed

    Khanna, Preeya; Carmena, Jose M

    2015-06-01

    Local field potential (LFP) activity in motor cortical and basal ganglia regions exhibits prominent beta (15-40Hz) oscillations during reaching and grasping, muscular contraction, and attention tasks. While in vitro and computational work has revealed specific mechanisms that may give rise to the frequency and duration of this oscillation, there is still controversy about what behavioral processes ultimately drive it. Here, simultaneous behavioral and large-scale neural recording experiments from non-human primate and human subjects are reviewed in the context of specific hypotheses about how beta band activity is generated. Finally, a new experimental paradigm utilizing operant conditioning combined with motor tasks is proposed as a way to further investigate this oscillation. PMID:25528615

  20. Social power and approach-related neural activity.

    PubMed

    Boksem, Maarten A S; Smolders, Ruud; De Cremer, David

    2012-06-01

    It has been argued that power activates a general tendency to approach whereas powerlessness activates a tendency to inhibit. The assumption is that elevated power involves reward-rich environments, freedom and, as a consequence, triggers an approach-related motivational orientation and attention to rewards. In contrast, reduced power is associated with increased threat, punishment and social constraint and thereby activates inhibition-related motivation. Moreover, approach motivation has been found to be associated with increased relative left-sided frontal brain activity, while withdrawal motivation has been associated with increased right sided activations. We measured EEG activity while subjects engaged in a task priming either high or low social power. Results show that high social power is indeed associated with greater left-frontal brain activity compared to low social power, providing the first neural evidence for the theory that high power is associated with approach-related motivation. We propose a framework accounting for differences in both approach motivation and goal-directed behaviour associated with different levels of power.

  1. Independent Components of Neural Activity Carry Information on Individual Populations

    PubMed Central

    Głąbska, Helena; Potworowski, Jan; Łęski, Szymon; Wójcik, Daniel K.

    2014-01-01

    Local field potential (LFP), the low-frequency part of the potential recorded extracellularly in the brain, reflects neural activity at the population level. The interpretation of LFP is complicated because it can mix activity from remote cells, on the order of millimeters from the electrode. To understand better the relation between the recordings and the local activity of cells we used a large-scale network thalamocortical model to compute simultaneous LFP, transmembrane currents, and spiking activity. We used this model to study the information contained in independent components obtained from the reconstructed Current Source Density (CSD), which smooths transmembrane currents, decomposed further with Independent Component Analysis (ICA). We found that the three most robust components matched well the activity of two dominating cell populations: superior pyramidal cells in layer 2/3 (rhythmic spiking) and tufted pyramids from layer 5 (intrinsically bursting). The pyramidal population from layer 2/3 could not be well described as a product of spatial profile and temporal activation, but by a sum of two such products which we recovered in two of the ICA components in our analysis, which correspond to the two first principal components of PCA decomposition of layer 2/3 population activity. At low noise one more cell population could be discerned but it is unlikely that it could be recovered in experiment given typical noise ranges. PMID:25153730

  2. Prenatal and acute cocaine exposure affects neural responses and habituation to visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Riley, Elizabeth; Kopotiyenko, Konstantin; Zhdanova, Irina

    2015-01-01

    Psychostimulants have many effects on visual function, from adverse following acute and prenatal exposure to therapeutic on attention deficit. To determine the impact of prenatal and acute cocaine exposure on visual processing, we studied neuronal responses to visual stimuli in two brain regions of a transgenic larval zebrafish expressing the calcium indicator GCaMP-HS. We found that both red light (LF) and dark (DF) flashes elicited similar responses in the optic tectum neuropil (TOn), while the dorsal telencephalon (dTe) responded only to LF. Acute cocaine (0.5 μM) reduced neuronal responses to LF in both brain regions but did not affect responses to DF. Repeated stimulus presentation (RSP) led to habituation of dTe neurons to LF. Acute cocaine prevented habituation. TOn habituated to DF, but not LF, and DF habituation was not modified by cocaine. Remarkably, prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) prevented the effects of acute cocaine on LF response amplitude and habituation later in development in both brain regions, but did not affect DF responses. We discovered that, in spite of similar neural responses to LF and DF in the TO (superior colliculus in mammals), responses to LF are more complex, involving dTe (homologous to the cerebral cortex), and are more vulnerable to cocaine. Our results demonstrate that acute cocaine exposure affects visual processing differentially by brain region, and that PCE modifies zebrafish visual processing in multiple structures in a stimulus-dependent manner. These findings are in accordance with the major role that the optic tectum and cerebral cortex play in sustaining visual attention, and support the hypothesis that modification of these areas by PCE may be responsible for visual deficits noted in humans. This model offers new methodological approaches for studying the adverse and therapeutic effects of psychostimulants on attention, and for the development of new pharmacological interventions.

  3. A Neural Mechanism for Nonconscious Activation of Conditioned Placebo and Nocebo Responses.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Karin B; Kaptchuk, Ted J; Chen, Xiaoyan; Kirsch, Irving; Ingvar, Martin; Gollub, Randy L; Kong, Jian

    2015-10-01

    Fundamental aspects of human behavior operate outside of conscious awareness. Yet, theories of conditioned responses in humans, such as placebo and nocebo effects on pain, have a strong emphasis on conscious recognition of contextual cues that trigger the response. Here, we investigated the neural pathways involved in nonconscious activation of conditioned pain responses, using functional magnetic resonance imaging in healthy participants. Nonconscious compared with conscious activation of conditioned placebo analgesia was associated with increased activation of the orbitofrontal cortex, a structure with direct connections to affective brain regions and basic reward processing. During nonconscious nocebo, there was increased activation of the thalamus, amygdala, and hippocampus. In contrast to previous assumptions about conditioning in humans, our results show that conditioned pain responses can be elicited independently of conscious awareness and our results suggest a hierarchical activation of neural pathways for nonconscious and conscious conditioned responses. Demonstrating that the human brain has a nonconscious mechanism for responding to conditioned cues has major implications for the role of associative learning in behavioral medicine and psychiatry. Our results may also open up for novel approaches to translational animal-to-human research since human consciousness and animal cognition is an inherent paradox in all behavioral science. PMID:25452576

  4. Perceptual Salience and Reward Both Influence Feedback-Related Neural Activity Arising from Choice.

    PubMed

    Lou, Bin; Hsu, Wha-Yin; Sajda, Paul

    2015-09-23

    For day-to-day decisions, multiple factors influence our choice between alternatives. Two dimensions of decision making that substantially affect choice are the objective perceptual properties of the stimulus (e.g., salience) and its subjective value. Here we measure EEGs in human subjects to relate their feedback-evoked EEG responses to estimates of prediction error given a neurally derived expected value for each trial. Unlike in traditional reinforcement learning paradigms, in our experiment the reward itself is not probabilistic; rather, it is a fixed value, which, when combined with the variable stimulus salience, yields uncertainty in the choice. We find that feedback-evoked event-related potentials (ERPs), specifically those classically termed feedback-related negativity, are modulated by both the reward level and stimulus salience. Using single-trial analysis of the EEG, we show stimulus-locked EEG components reflecting perceived stimulus salience can be combined with the level of reward to create an estimate of expected reward. This expected reward is used to form a prediction error that correlates with the trial-by-trial variability of the feedback ERPs for negative, but not positive, feedback. This suggests that the valence of prediction error is more important than the valence of the actual feedback, since only positive rewards were delivered in the experiment (no penalty or loss). Finally, we show that these subjectively defined prediction errors are informative of the riskiness of the subject's choice on the subsequent trial. In summary, our work shows that neural correlates of stimulus salience interact with value information to yield neural representations of subjective expected reward. Significance statement: How we make perceptual decisions depends on sensory evidence and the value of our options. These two factors often interact to yield subjective decisions; i.e., individuals integrate sensory evidence and value to form their own estimates of

  5. 28 CFR 55.15 - Affected activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... RIGHTS ACT REGARDING LANGUAGE MINORITY GROUPS Minority Language Materials and Assistance § 55.15 Affected... of applicable language minority groups to be effectively informed of and participate effectively...

  6. 28 CFR 55.15 - Affected activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... RIGHTS ACT REGARDING LANGUAGE MINORITY GROUPS Minority Language Materials and Assistance § 55.15 Affected... of applicable language minority groups to be effectively informed of and participate effectively...

  7. 28 CFR 55.15 - Affected activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... RIGHTS ACT REGARDING LANGUAGE MINORITY GROUPS Minority Language Materials and Assistance § 55.15 Affected... of applicable language minority groups to be effectively informed of and participate effectively...

  8. 28 CFR 55.15 - Affected activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... RIGHTS ACT REGARDING LANGUAGE MINORITY GROUPS Minority Language Materials and Assistance § 55.15 Affected... of applicable language minority groups to be effectively informed of and participate effectively...

  9. 28 CFR 55.15 - Affected activities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... RIGHTS ACT REGARDING LANGUAGE MINORITY GROUPS Minority Language Materials and Assistance § 55.15 Affected... of applicable language minority groups to be effectively informed of and participate effectively...

  10. Reduction in Neural Performance following Recovery from Anoxic Stress Is Mimicked by AMPK Pathway Activation

    PubMed Central

    Money, Tomas G. A.; Sproule, Michael K. J.; Hamour, Amr F.; Robertson, R. Meldrum

    2014-01-01

    Nervous systems are energetically expensive to operate and maintain. Both synaptic and action potential signalling require a significant investment to maintain ion homeostasis. We have investigated the tuning of neural performance following a brief period of anoxia in a well-characterized visual pathway in the locust, the LGMD/DCMD looming motion-sensitive circuit. We hypothesised that the energetic cost of signalling can be dynamically modified by cellular mechanisms in response to metabolic stress. We examined whether recovery from anoxia resulted in a decrease in excitability of the electrophysiological properties in the DCMD neuron. We further examined the effect of these modifications on behavioural output. We show that recovery from anoxia affects metabolic rate, flight steering behaviour, and action potential properties. The effects of anoxia on action potentials can be mimicked by activation of the AMPK metabolic pathway. We suggest this is evidence of a coordinated cellular mechanism to reduce neural energetic demand following an anoxic stress. Together, this represents a dynamically-regulated means to link the energetic demands of neural signaling with the environmental constraints faced by the whole animal. PMID:24533112

  11. Activation of endogenous neural stem cells for multiple sclerosis therapy.

    PubMed

    Michailidou, Iliana; de Vries, Helga E; Hol, Elly M; van Strien, Miriam E

    2014-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the central nervous system, leading to severe neurological deficits. Current MS treatment regimens, consist of immunomodulatory agents aiming to reduce the rate of relapses. However, these agents are usually insufficient to treat chronic neurological disability. A promising perspective for future therapy of MS is the regeneration of lesions with replacement of the damaged oligodendrocytes or neurons. Therapies targeting to the enhancement of endogenous remyelination, aim to promote the activation of either the parenchymal oligodendrocyte progenitor cells or the subventricular zone-derived neural stem cells (NSCs). Less studied but highly potent, is the strategy of neuronal regeneration with endogenous NSCs that although being linked to numerous limitations, is anticipated to ameliorate cognitive disability in MS. Focusing on the forebrain, this review highlights the role of NSCs in the regeneration of MS lesions.

  12. Natural lecithin promotes neural network complexity and activity.

    PubMed

    Latifi, Shahrzad; Tamayol, Ali; Habibey, Rouhollah; Sabzevari, Reza; Kahn, Cyril; Geny, David; Eftekharpour, Eftekhar; Annabi, Nasim; Blau, Axel; Linder, Michel; Arab-Tehrany, Elmira

    2016-05-27

    Phospholipids in the brain cell membranes contain different polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), which are critical to nervous system function and structure. In particular, brain function critically depends on the uptake of the so-called "essential" fatty acids such as omega-3 (n-3) and omega-6 (n-6) PUFAs that cannot be readily synthesized by the human body. We extracted natural lecithin rich in various PUFAs from a marine source and transformed it into nanoliposomes. These nanoliposomes increased neurite outgrowth, network complexity and neural activity of cortical rat neurons in vitro. We also observed an upregulation of synapsin I (SYN1), which supports the positive role of lecithin in synaptogenesis, synaptic development and maturation. These findings suggest that lecithin nanoliposomes enhance neuronal development, which may have an impact on devising new lecithin delivery strategies for therapeutic applications.

  13. Natural lecithin promotes neural network complexity and activity

    PubMed Central

    Latifi, Shahrzad; Tamayol, Ali; Habibey, Rouhollah; Sabzevari, Reza; Kahn, Cyril; Geny, David; Eftekharpour, Eftekhar; Annabi, Nasim; Blau, Axel; Linder, Michel; Arab-Tehrany, Elmira

    2016-01-01

    Phospholipids in the brain cell membranes contain different polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), which are critical to nervous system function and structure. In particular, brain function critically depends on the uptake of the so-called “essential” fatty acids such as omega-3 (n-3) and omega-6 (n-6) PUFAs that cannot be readily synthesized by the human body. We extracted natural lecithin rich in various PUFAs from a marine source and transformed it into nanoliposomes. These nanoliposomes increased neurite outgrowth, network complexity and neural activity of cortical rat neurons in vitro. We also observed an upregulation of synapsin I (SYN1), which supports the positive role of lecithin in synaptogenesis, synaptic development and maturation. These findings suggest that lecithin nanoliposomes enhance neuronal development, which may have an impact on devising new lecithin delivery strategies for therapeutic applications. PMID:27228907

  14. Activation of endogenous neural stem cells for multiple sclerosis therapy

    PubMed Central

    Michailidou, Iliana; de Vries, Helga E.; Hol, Elly M.; van Strien, Miriam E.

    2015-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the central nervous system, leading to severe neurological deficits. Current MS treatment regimens, consist of immunomodulatory agents aiming to reduce the rate of relapses. However, these agents are usually insufficient to treat chronic neurological disability. A promising perspective for future therapy of MS is the regeneration of lesions with replacement of the damaged oligodendrocytes or neurons. Therapies targeting to the enhancement of endogenous remyelination, aim to promote the activation of either the parenchymal oligodendrocyte progenitor cells or the subventricular zone-derived neural stem cells (NSCs). Less studied but highly potent, is the strategy of neuronal regeneration with endogenous NSCs that although being linked to numerous limitations, is anticipated to ameliorate cognitive disability in MS. Focusing on the forebrain, this review highlights the role of NSCs in the regeneration of MS lesions. PMID:25653584

  15. Slits Affect the Timely Migration of Neural Crest Cells via Robo Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Giovannone, Dion; Reyes, Michelle; Reyes, Rachel; Correa, Lisa; Martinez, Darwin; Ra, Hannah; Gomez, Gustavo; Kaiser, Josh; Ma, Le; Stein, Mary-Pat; de Bellard, Maria Elena

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Background Neural crest cells emerge by delamination from the dorsal neural tube and give rise to various components of the peripheral nervous system in vertebrate embryos. These cells change from non-motile into highly motile cells migrating to distant areas before further differentiation. Mechanisms controlling delamination and subsequent migration of neural crest cells are not fully understood. Slit2, a chemorepellant for axonal guidance that repels and stimulates motility of trunk neural crest cells away from the gut has recently been suggested to be a tumor suppressor molecule. The goal of this study was to further investigate the role of Slit2 in trunk neural crest cell migration by constitutive expression in neural crest cells. Results We found that Slit gain-of-function significantly impaired neural crest cell migration while Slit loss-of-function favored migration. In addition, we observed that the distribution of key cytoskeletal markers was disrupted in both gain and loss of function instances. Conclusions These findings suggest that Slit molecules might be involved in the processes that allow neural crest cells to begin migration and transitioning to a mesenchymal type. PMID:22689303

  16. Effects of Near-Infrared Laser on Neural Cell Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mochizuki-Oda, Noriko; Kataoka, Yosky; Yamada, Hisao; Awazu, Kunio

    2004-08-01

    Near-infrared laser has been used to relieve patients from various kinds of pain caused by postherpetic neuralgesia, myofascial dysfunction, surgical and traumatic wound, cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis. Clinically, He-Ne (λ=632.8 nm, 780 nm) and Ga-Al-As (805 ± 25 nm) lasers are used to irradiate trigger points or nerve ganglion. However the precise mechanisms of such biological actions of the laser have not yet been resolved. Since laser therapy is often effective to suppress the pain caused by hyperactive excitation of sensory neurons, interactions with laser light and neural cells are suggested. As neural excitation requires large amount of energy liberated from adenosine triphosphate (ATP), we examined the effect of 830-nm laser irradiation on the energy metabolism of the rat central nervous system and isolated mitochondria from brain. The diode laser was applied for 15 min with irradiance of 4.8 W/cm2 on a 2 mm-diameter spot at the brain surface. Tissue ATP content of the irradiated area in the cerebral cortex was 19 % higher than that of the non-treated area (opposite side of the cortex), whereas the ADP content showed no significant difference. Irradiation at another wavelength (652 nm) had no effect on either ATP or ADP contents. The temperature of the brain tissue was increased 4.5 - 5.0 °C during the irradiation of both 830-nm and 652-nm laser light. Direct irradiation of the mitochondrial suspension did not show any wavelength-dependent acceleration of respiration rate nor ATP synthesis. These results suggest that the increase in tissue ATP content did not result from the thermal effect, but from specific effect of the laser operated at 830 nm. Electrophysiological studies showed the hyperpolarization of membrane potential of isolated neurons and decrease in membrane resistance with irradiation of the laser, suggesting an activation of potassium channels. Intracellular ATP is reported to regulate some kinds of potassium channels. Possible mechanisms

  17. Studying modulation on simultaneously activated SSVEP neural networks by a cognitive task.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhenghua

    2014-01-01

    Since the discovery of steady-state visually evoked potential (SSVEP), it has been used in many fields. Numerous studies suggest that there exist three SSVEP neural networks in different frequency bands. An obvious phenomenon has been observed, that the amplitude and phase of SSVEP can be modulated by a cognitive task. Previous works have studied this modulation on separately activated SSVEP neural networks by a cognitive task. If two or more SSVEP neural networks are activated simultaneously in the process of a cognitive task, is the modulation on different SSVEP neural networks the same? In this study, two different SSVEP neural networks were activated simultaneously by two different frequency flickers, with a working memory task irrelevant to the flickers being conducted at the same time. The modulated SSVEP waves were compared with each other and to those only under one flicker in previous studies. The comparison results show that the cognitive task can modulate different SSVEP neural networks with a similar style.

  18. Decorrelation of Neural-Network Activity by Inhibitory Feedback

    PubMed Central

    Einevoll, Gaute T.; Diesmann, Markus

    2012-01-01

    Correlations in spike-train ensembles can seriously impair the encoding of information by their spatio-temporal structure. An inevitable source of correlation in finite neural networks is common presynaptic input to pairs of neurons. Recent studies demonstrate that spike correlations in recurrent neural networks are considerably smaller than expected based on the amount of shared presynaptic input. Here, we explain this observation by means of a linear network model and simulations of networks of leaky integrate-and-fire neurons. We show that inhibitory feedback efficiently suppresses pairwise correlations and, hence, population-rate fluctuations, thereby assigning inhibitory neurons the new role of active decorrelation. We quantify this decorrelation by comparing the responses of the intact recurrent network (feedback system) and systems where the statistics of the feedback channel is perturbed (feedforward system). Manipulations of the feedback statistics can lead to a significant increase in the power and coherence of the population response. In particular, neglecting correlations within the ensemble of feedback channels or between the external stimulus and the feedback amplifies population-rate fluctuations by orders of magnitude. The fluctuation suppression in homogeneous inhibitory networks is explained by a negative feedback loop in the one-dimensional dynamics of the compound activity. Similarly, a change of coordinates exposes an effective negative feedback loop in the compound dynamics of stable excitatory-inhibitory networks. The suppression of input correlations in finite networks is explained by the population averaged correlations in the linear network model: In purely inhibitory networks, shared-input correlations are canceled by negative spike-train correlations. In excitatory-inhibitory networks, spike-train correlations are typically positive. Here, the suppression of input correlations is not a result of the mere existence of correlations between

  19. Brain Functional Effects of Psychopharmacological Treatment in Major Depression: a Focus on Neural Circuitry of Affective Processing.

    PubMed

    Wessa, Michèle; Lois, Giannis

    2015-01-01

    In the last two decades, neuroimaging research has reached a much deeper understanding of the neurobiological underpinnings of major depression (MD) and has converged on functional alterations in limbic and prefrontal neural networks, which are mainly linked to altered emotional processing observed in MD patients. To date, a considerable number of studies have sought to investigate how these neural networks change with pharmacological antidepressant treatment. In the current review, we therefore discuss results from a) pharmacological functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies investigating the effects of selective serotonin or noradrenalin reuptake inhibitors on neural activation patterns in relation to emotional processing in healthy individuals, b) treatment studies in patients with unipolar depression assessing changes in neural activation patterns before and after antidepressant pharmacotherapy, and c) predictive neural biomarkers of clinical response in depression. Comparing results from pharmacological fMRI studies in healthy individuals and treatment studies in depressed patients nicely showed parallel findings, mainly for a reduction of limbic activation in response to negative stimuli. A thorough investigation of the empirical findings highlights the importance of the specific paradigm employed in every study which may account for some of the discrepant findings reported in treatment studies in depressed patients.

  20. Can simple interactions capture complex features of neural activity underlying behavior in a virtual reality environment?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshulam, Leenoy; Gauthier, Jeffrey; Brody, Carlos; Tank, David; Bialek, William

    The complex neural interactions which are abundant in most recordings of neural activity are relatively poorly understood. A prime example of such interactions can be found in the in vivo neural activity which underlies complex behaviors of mice, imaged in brain regions such as hippocampus and parietal cortex. Experimental techniques now allow us to accurately follow these neural interactions in the simultaneous activity of large neuronal populations of awake behaving animals. Here, we demonstrate that pairwise maximum entropy models can predict a surprising number of properties of the neural activity. The models, that are constrained with activity rates and interactions between pairs of neurons, are well fit to the activity `states' in the hippocampus and cortex of mice performing cognitive tasks while navigating in a virtual reality environment.

  1. Evidence-Based Systematic Review: Effects of Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation on Swallowing and Neural Activation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clark, Heather; Lazarus, Cathy; Arvedson, Joan; Schooling, Tracy; Frymark, Tobi

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: To systematically review the literature examining the effects of neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) on swallowing and neural activation. The review was conducted as part of a series examining the effects of oral motor exercises (OMEs) on speech, swallowing, and neural activation. Method: A systematic search was conducted to…

  2. Volitional control of neural activity: implications for brain–computer interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Fetz, Eberhard E

    2007-01-01

    Successful operation of brain–computer interfaces (BCI) and brain–machine interfaces (BMI) depends significantly on the degree to which neural activity can be volitionally controlled. This paper reviews evidence for such volitional control in a variety of neural signals, with particular emphasis on the activity of cortical neurons. Some evidence comes from conventional experiments that reveal volitional modulation in neural activity related to behaviours, including real and imagined movements, cognitive imagery and shifts of attention. More direct evidence comes from studies on operant conditioning of neural activity using biofeedback, and from BCI/BMI studies in which neural activity controls cursors or peripheral devices. Limits in the degree of accuracy of control in the latter studies can be attributed to several possible factors. Some of these factors, particularly limited practice time, can be addressed with long-term implanted BCIs. Preliminary observations with implanted circuits implementing recurrent BCIs are summarized. PMID:17234689

  3. Sociocultural patterning of neural activity during self-reflection.

    PubMed

    Ma, Yina; Bang, Dan; Wang, Chenbo; Allen, Micah; Frith, Chris; Roepstorff, Andreas; Han, Shihui

    2014-01-01

    Western cultures encourage self-construals independent of social contexts, whereas East Asian cultures foster interdependent self-construals that rely on how others perceive the self. How are culturally specific self-construals mediated by the human brain? Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we monitored neural responses from adults in East Asian (Chinese) and Western (Danish) cultural contexts during judgments of social, mental and physical attributes of themselves and public figures to assess cultural influences on self-referential processing of personal attributes in different dimensions. We found that judgments of self vs a public figure elicited greater activation in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) in Danish than in Chinese participants regardless of attribute dimensions for judgments. However, self-judgments of social attributes induced greater activity in the temporoparietal junction (TPJ) in Chinese than in Danish participants. Moreover, the group difference in TPJ activity was mediated by a measure of a cultural value (i.e. interdependence of self-construal). Our findings suggest that individuals in different sociocultural contexts may learn and/or adopt distinct strategies for self-reflection by changing the weight of the mPFC and TPJ in the social brain network.

  4. Neural Response during the Activation of the Attachment System in Patients with Borderline Personality Disorder: An fMRI Study.

    PubMed

    Buchheim, Anna; Erk, Susanne; George, Carol; Kächele, Horst; Martius, Philipp; Pokorny, Dan; Spitzer, Manfred; Walter, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD) are characterized by emotional instability, impaired emotion regulation and unresolved attachment patterns associated with abusive childhood experiences. We investigated the neural response during the activation of the attachment system in BPD patients compared to healthy controls using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Eleven female patients with BPD without posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and 17 healthy female controls matched for age and education were telling stories in the scanner in response to the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System (AAP), an eight-picture set assessment of adult attachment. The picture set includes theoretically-derived attachment scenes, such as separation, death, threat and potential abuse. The picture presentation order is designed to gradually increase the activation of the attachment system. Each picture stimulus was presented for 2 min. Analyses examine group differences in attachment classifications and neural activation patterns over the course of the task. Unresolved attachment was associated with increasing amygdala activation over the course of the attachment task in patients as well as controls. Unresolved controls, but not patients, showed activation in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and the rostral cingulate zone (RCZ). We interpret this as a neural signature of BPD patients' inability to exert top-down control under conditions of attachment distress. These findings point to possible neural mechanisms for underlying affective dysregulation in BPD in the context of attachment trauma and fear.

  5. Neural Response during the Activation of the Attachment System in Patients with Borderline Personality Disorder: An fMRI Study

    PubMed Central

    Buchheim, Anna; Erk, Susanne; George, Carol; Kächele, Horst; Martius, Philipp; Pokorny, Dan; Spitzer, Manfred; Walter, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD) are characterized by emotional instability, impaired emotion regulation and unresolved attachment patterns associated with abusive childhood experiences. We investigated the neural response during the activation of the attachment system in BPD patients compared to healthy controls using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Eleven female patients with BPD without posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and 17 healthy female controls matched for age and education were telling stories in the scanner in response to the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System (AAP), an eight-picture set assessment of adult attachment. The picture set includes theoretically-derived attachment scenes, such as separation, death, threat and potential abuse. The picture presentation order is designed to gradually increase the activation of the attachment system. Each picture stimulus was presented for 2 min. Analyses examine group differences in attachment classifications and neural activation patterns over the course of the task. Unresolved attachment was associated with increasing amygdala activation over the course of the attachment task in patients as well as controls. Unresolved controls, but not patients, showed activation in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and the rostral cingulate zone (RCZ). We interpret this as a neural signature of BPD patients’ inability to exert top-down control under conditions of attachment distress. These findings point to possible neural mechanisms for underlying affective dysregulation in BPD in the context of attachment trauma and fear. PMID:27531977

  6. VANGL1 rare variants associated with neural tube defects affect convergent extension in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Annie; McDearmid, Jonathan R; Lachance, Stephanie; De Marco, Patrizia; Merello, Elisa; Capra, Valeria; Gros, Philippe; Drapeau, Pierre; Kibar, Zoha

    2010-01-01

    In humans, rare non-synonymous variants in the planar cell polarity gene VANGL1 are associated with neural tube defects (NTDs). These variants were hypothesized to be pathogenic based mainly on genetic studies in a large cohort of NTD patients. In this study, we validate the potential pathogenic effect of these mutations in vivo by investigating their effect on convergent extension in zebrafish. Knocking down the expression of tri, the ortholog of Vangl2, using an antisense morpholino (MO), as shown previously, led to a defective convergent extension (CE) manifested by a shortened body axis and widened somites. Co-injection of the human VANGL1 with the tri-MO was able to partially rescue the tri-MO induced phenotype in zebrafish. In contrast, co-injection of two human VANGL1 variants, p.Val239Ile and p.Met328Thr, failed to rescue this phenotype. We next carried out overexpression studies where we measured the ability of the human VANGL1 alleles to induce a CE phenotype when injected at high doses in zebrafish embryos. While overexpressing the wild-type allele led to a severely defective CE, overexpression of either p.Val239Ile or p.Met328Thr variant failed to do so. Results from both tri-MO knockdown/rescue results and overexpression assays suggest that these two variants most likely represent "loss-of-function" alleles that affect protein function during embryonic development. Our study demonstrates a high degree of functional conservation of VANGL genes across evolution and provides a model system for studying potential variants identified in human NTDs.

  7. Affect-specific activation of shared networks for perception and execution of facial expressions.

    PubMed

    Kircher, Tilo; Pohl, Anna; Krach, Sören; Thimm, Markus; Schulte-Rüther, Martin; Anders, Silke; Mathiak, Klaus

    2013-04-01

    Previous studies have shown overlapping neural activations for observation and execution or imitation of emotional facial expressions. These shared representations have been assumed to provide indirect evidence for a human mirror neuron system, which is suggested to be a prerequisite of action comprehension. We aimed at clarifying whether shared representations in and beyond human mirror areas are specifically activated by affective facial expressions or whether they are activated by facial expressions independent of the emotional meaning. During neuroimaging, participants observed and executed happy and non-emotional facial expressions. Shared representations were revealed for happy facial expressions in the pars opercularis, the precentral gyrus, in the superior temporal gyrus/medial temporal gyrus (MTG), in the pre-supplementary motor area and in the right amygdala. All areas showed less pronounced activation in the non-emotional condition. When directly compared, significant stronger neural responses emerged for happy facial expressions in the pre-supplementary motor area and in the MTG than for non-emotional stimuli. We assume that activation of shared representations depends on the affect and (social) relevance of the facial expression. The pre-supplementary motor area is a core-shared representation-structure supporting observation and execution of affective contagious facial expressions and might have a modulatory role during the preparation of executing happy facial expressions.

  8. Initial evidence of a failure to activate right anterior insula during affective set-shifting in PTSD

    PubMed Central

    Simmons, Alan; Strigo, Irina A.; Matthews, Scott C.; Paulus, Martin P.; Stein, Murray B.

    2010-01-01

    Objective Interoception is the perception of one's internal physiological, sensory, and emotional status. Extensive evidence supports a link between interoception and subjective experience. An altered ability to monitor or modulate interoception as it relates to subjective experience may provide a mechanistic explanation for the development of some forms of psychiatric illness. Methods We investigated which neural networks are activated when anticipating a change in affective (and thus interoceptive) state, which we term “affective set-shifting”, in women with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) related to intimate partner violence, and in non-traumatized healthy volunteers. Results Although both groups activated the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex during affective set-shifting, the PTSD group showed significantly less activation in the right anterior insula than did the controls. Conclusions These findings may suggest that although individuals with PTSD are cognitively aware of the impending shift in interoceptive state, they fail to appropriately activate neural circuitry involved in modulating interoceptive responses. PMID:19398499

  9. Sensitive red protein calcium indicators for imaging neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Dana, Hod; Mohar, Boaz; Sun, Yi; Narayan, Sujatha; Gordus, Andrew; Hasseman, Jeremy P; Tsegaye, Getahun; Holt, Graham T; Hu, Amy; Walpita, Deepika; Patel, Ronak; Macklin, John J; Bargmann, Cornelia I; Ahrens, Misha B; Schreiter, Eric R; Jayaraman, Vivek; Looger, Loren L; Svoboda, Karel; Kim, Douglas S

    2016-01-01

    Genetically encoded calcium indicators (GECIs) allow measurement of activity in large populations of neurons and in small neuronal compartments, over times of milliseconds to months. Although GFP-based GECIs are widely used for in vivo neurophysiology, GECIs with red-shifted excitation and emission spectra have advantages for in vivo imaging because of reduced scattering and absorption in tissue, and a consequent reduction in phototoxicity. However, current red GECIs are inferior to the state-of-the-art GFP-based GCaMP6 indicators for detecting and quantifying neural activity. Here we present improved red GECIs based on mRuby (jRCaMP1a, b) and mApple (jRGECO1a), with sensitivity comparable to GCaMP6. We characterized the performance of the new red GECIs in cultured neurons and in mouse, Drosophila, zebrafish and C. elegans in vivo. Red GECIs facilitate deep-tissue imaging, dual-color imaging together with GFP-based reporters, and the use of optogenetics in combination with calcium imaging. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12727.001 PMID:27011354

  10. Genetic influences on composite neural activations supporting visual target identification.

    PubMed

    Ethridge, Lauren E; Malone, Stephen M; Iacono, William G; Clementz, Brett A

    2013-02-01

    Behavior genetic studies of brain activity associated with complex cognitive operations may further elucidate the genetic and physiological underpinnings of basic and complex neural processing. In the present project, monozygotic (N=51 pairs) and dizygotic (N=48 pairs) twins performed a visual oddball task with dense-array EEG. Using spatial PCA, two principal components each were retained for targets and standards; wavelets were used to obtain time-frequency maps of eigenvalue-weighted event-related oscillations for each individual. Distribution of inter-trial phase coherence (ITC) and single trial power (STP) over time indicated that the early principal component was primarily associated with ITC while the later component was associated with a mixture of ITC and STP. Spatial PCA on point-by-point broad sense heritability matrices revealed data-derived frequency bands similar to those well established in EEG literature. Biometric models of eigenvalue-weighted time-frequency data suggest a link between physiology of oscillatory brain activity and patterns of genetic influence. PMID:23201034

  11. From Neuromuscular Activation to End-point Locomotion: An Artificial Neural Network-based Technique for Neural Prostheses

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chia-Lin; Jin, Zhanpeng; Chang, Hou-Cheng; Cheng, Allen C.

    2009-01-01

    Neuroprostheses, implantable or non-invasive ones, are promising techniques to enable paralyzed individuals with conditions, such as spinal cord injury or spina bifida (SB), to control their limbs voluntarily. Direct cortical control of invasive neuroprosthetic devices and robotic arms have recently become feasible for primates. However, little is known about designing non-invasive, closed-loop neuromuscular control strategies for neural prostheses. Our goal was to investigate if an Artificial Neural Network-based (ANN-based) model for closed-loop controlled neural prostheses could use neuromuscular activation recorded from individuals with impaired spinal cord to predict their end-point gait parameters (such as stride length and step width). We recruited 12 persons with SB (5 females and 7 males) and collected their neuromuscular activation and end-point gait parameters during overground walking. Our results show that the proposed ANN-based technique can achieve a highly accurate prediction (e.g., R-values of 0.92 – 0.97, ANN (tansig+tansig) for single composition of data sets) for altered end-point locomotion. Compared to traditional robust regression, this technique can provide up to 80% more accurate prediction. Our results suggest that more precise control of complex neural prostheses during locomotion can be achieved by engaging neuromuscular activity as intrinsic feedback to generate end-point leg movement. This ANN-based model allows a seamless incorporation of neuromuscular activity, detected from paralyzed individuals, to adaptively predict their altered gait patterns, which can be employed to provide closed-loop feedback information for neural prostheses. PMID:19389678

  12. Neural Mechanisms of Attentional Control Differentiate Trait and State Negative Affect

    PubMed Central

    Crocker, Laura D.; Heller, Wendy; Spielberg, Jeffrey M.; Warren, Stacie L.; Bredemeier, Keith; Sutton, Bradley P.; Banich, Marie T.; Miller, Gregory A.

    2012-01-01

    The present research examined the hypothesis that cognitive processes are modulated differentially by trait and state negative affect (NA). Brain activation associated with trait and state NA was measured by fMRI during an attentional control task, the emotion-word Stroop. Performance on the task was disrupted only by state NA. Trait NA was associated with reduced activity in several regions, including a prefrontal area that has been shown to be involved in top-down, goal-directed attentional control. In contrast, state NA was associated with increased activity in several regions, including a prefrontal region that has been shown to be involved in stimulus-driven aspects of attentional control. Results suggest that NA has a significant impact on cognition, and that state and trait NA disrupt attentional control in distinct ways. PMID:22934089

  13. Sensory Entrainment Mechanisms in Auditory Perception: Neural Synchronization Cortico-Striatal Activation.

    PubMed

    Sameiro-Barbosa, Catia M; Geiser, Eveline

    2016-01-01

    The auditory system displays modulations in sensitivity that can align with the temporal structure of the acoustic environment. This sensory entrainment can facilitate sensory perception and is particularly relevant for audition. Systems neuroscience is slowly uncovering the neural mechanisms underlying the behaviorally observed sensory entrainment effects in the human sensory system. The present article summarizes the prominent behavioral effects of sensory entrainment and reviews our current understanding of the neural basis of sensory entrainment, such as synchronized neural oscillations, and potentially, neural activation in the cortico-striatal system. PMID:27559306

  14. Sensory Entrainment Mechanisms in Auditory Perception: Neural Synchronization Cortico-Striatal Activation

    PubMed Central

    Sameiro-Barbosa, Catia M.; Geiser, Eveline

    2016-01-01

    The auditory system displays modulations in sensitivity that can align with the temporal structure of the acoustic environment. This sensory entrainment can facilitate sensory perception and is particularly relevant for audition. Systems neuroscience is slowly uncovering the neural mechanisms underlying the behaviorally observed sensory entrainment effects in the human sensory system. The present article summarizes the prominent behavioral effects of sensory entrainment and reviews our current understanding of the neural basis of sensory entrainment, such as synchronized neural oscillations, and potentially, neural activation in the cortico-striatal system. PMID:27559306

  15. Mutations affecting enzymatic activity in liver arginase

    SciTech Connect

    Vockley, J.G.; Tabor, D.E.; Goodman, B.K.

    1994-09-01

    The hydrolysis of arginine to ornithine and urea is catalyzed by arginase in the last step of the urea cycle. We examined a group of arginase deficient patients by PCR-SSCP analysis to characterize the molecular basis of this disorder. A heterogeneous population of nonsense mutations, microdeletions, and missense mutations has been identified in our cohort. Microdeletions which introduce premature stop codons downstream of the deletion and nonsense mutations result in no arginase activity. These mutations occur randomly along the gene. The majority of missense mutations identified appear to occur in regions of high cross-species homology. To test the effect of these missense mutations on arginase activity, site-directed mutagenesis was used to re-create the patient mutations for in vivo expression studies in a prokaryotic fusion-protein expression system. Of 4 different missense mutations identified in 6 individuals, only one was located outside of a conserved region. The three substitution mutations within the conserved regions had a significant effect on enzymatic activity (0-3.1 nmole/30min, normal is 1300-1400 nmoles/30min, as determined by in vitro arginase assay), while the fourth mutation, a T to S substitution, did not. In addition, site-directed mutagenesis was utilized to create mutations not in residues postulated to play a significant role in the enzymatic function or active site formation in manganese-binding proteins such as arginase. We have determined that the substitution of glycine for a histidine residue, located in a very highly conserved region of exon 3, and the substitution of a histidine and an aspartic acid residue within a similarly conserved region in exon 4, totally abolishes enzymatic activity. Mutations substituting glycine for an additional histidine and aspartic acid residue in exon 4 and two aspartic acid residues in exon 7 have also been created. We are currently in the process of characterizing these mutations.

  16. Trait self-esteem and neural activities related to self-evaluation and social feedback.

    PubMed

    Yang, Juan; Xu, Xiaofan; Chen, Yu; Shi, Zhenhao; Han, Shihui

    2016-01-01

    Self-esteem has been associated with neural responses to self-reflection and attitude toward social feedback but in different brain regions. The distinct associations might arise from different tasks or task-related attitudes in the previous studies. The current study aimed to clarify these by investigating the association between self-esteem and neural responses to evaluation of one's own personality traits and of others' opinion about one's own personality traits. We scanned 25 college students using functional MRI during evaluation of oneself or evaluation of social feedback. Trait self-esteem was measured using the Rosenberg self-esteem scale after scanning. Whole-brain regression analyses revealed that trait self-esteem was associated with the bilateral orbitofrontal activity during evaluation of one's own positive traits but with activities in the medial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate, and occipital cortices during evaluation of positive social feedback. Our findings suggest that trait self-esteem modulates the degree of both affective processes in the orbitofrontal cortex during self-reflection and cognitive processes in the medial prefrontal cortex during evaluation of social feedback. PMID:26842975

  17. Trait self-esteem and neural activities related to self-evaluation and social feedback

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Juan; Xu, Xiaofan; Chen, Yu; Shi, Zhenhao; Han, Shihui

    2016-01-01

    Self-esteem has been associated with neural responses to self-reflection and attitude toward social feedback but in different brain regions. The distinct associations might arise from different tasks or task-related attitudes in the previous studies. The current study aimed to clarify these by investigating the association between self-esteem and neural responses to evaluation of one’s own personality traits and of others’ opinion about one’s own personality traits. We scanned 25 college students using functional MRI during evaluation of oneself or evaluation of social feedback. Trait self-esteem was measured using the Rosenberg self-esteem scale after scanning. Whole-brain regression analyses revealed that trait self-esteem was associated with the bilateral orbitofrontal activity during evaluation of one’s own positive traits but with activities in the medial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate, and occipital cortices during evaluation of positive social feedback. Our findings suggest that trait self-esteem modulates the degree of both affective processes in the orbitofrontal cortex during self-reflection and cognitive processes in the medial prefrontal cortex during evaluation of social feedback. PMID:26842975

  18. Trait self-esteem and neural activities related to self-evaluation and social feedback.

    PubMed

    Yang, Juan; Xu, Xiaofan; Chen, Yu; Shi, Zhenhao; Han, Shihui

    2016-01-01

    Self-esteem has been associated with neural responses to self-reflection and attitude toward social feedback but in different brain regions. The distinct associations might arise from different tasks or task-related attitudes in the previous studies. The current study aimed to clarify these by investigating the association between self-esteem and neural responses to evaluation of one's own personality traits and of others' opinion about one's own personality traits. We scanned 25 college students using functional MRI during evaluation of oneself or evaluation of social feedback. Trait self-esteem was measured using the Rosenberg self-esteem scale after scanning. Whole-brain regression analyses revealed that trait self-esteem was associated with the bilateral orbitofrontal activity during evaluation of one's own positive traits but with activities in the medial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate, and occipital cortices during evaluation of positive social feedback. Our findings suggest that trait self-esteem modulates the degree of both affective processes in the orbitofrontal cortex during self-reflection and cognitive processes in the medial prefrontal cortex during evaluation of social feedback.

  19. The neural basis of the bystander effect--the influence of group size on neural activity when witnessing an emergency.

    PubMed

    Hortensius, Ruud; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2014-06-01

    Naturalistic observation and experimental studies in humans and other primates show that observing an individual in need automatically triggers helping behavior. The aim of the present study is to clarify the neurofunctional basis of social influences on individual helping behavior. We investigate whether when participants witness an emergency, while performing an unrelated color-naming task in an fMRI scanner, the number of bystanders present at the emergency influences neural activity in regions related to action preparation. The results show a decrease in activity with the increase in group size in the left pre- and postcentral gyri and left medial frontal gyrus. In contrast, regions related to visual perception and attention show an increase in activity. These results demonstrate the neural mechanisms of social influence on automatic action preparation that is at the core of helping behavior when witnessing an emergency.

  20. A tensor-product-kernel framework for multiscale neural activity decoding and control.

    PubMed

    Li, Lin; Brockmeier, Austin J; Choi, John S; Francis, Joseph T; Sanchez, Justin C; Príncipe, José C

    2014-01-01

    Brain machine interfaces (BMIs) have attracted intense attention as a promising technology for directly interfacing computers or prostheses with the brain's motor and sensory areas, thereby bypassing the body. The availability of multiscale neural recordings including spike trains and local field potentials (LFPs) brings potential opportunities to enhance computational modeling by enriching the characterization of the neural system state. However, heterogeneity on data type (spike timing versus continuous amplitude signals) and spatiotemporal scale complicates the model integration of multiscale neural activity. In this paper, we propose a tensor-product-kernel-based framework to integrate the multiscale activity and exploit the complementary information available in multiscale neural activity. This provides a common mathematical framework for incorporating signals from different domains. The approach is applied to the problem of neural decoding and control. For neural decoding, the framework is able to identify the nonlinear functional relationship between the multiscale neural responses and the stimuli using general purpose kernel adaptive filtering. In a sensory stimulation experiment, the tensor-product-kernel decoder outperforms decoders that use only a single neural data type. In addition, an adaptive inverse controller for delivering electrical microstimulation patterns that utilizes the tensor-product kernel achieves promising results in emulating the responses to natural stimulation. PMID:24829569

  1. Biologically active extracts with kidney affections applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascu (Neagu), Mihaela; Pascu, Daniela-Elena; Cozea, Andreea; Bunaciu, Andrei A.; Miron, Alexandra Raluca; Nechifor, Cristina Aurelia

    2015-12-01

    This paper is aimed to select plant materials rich in bioflavonoid compounds, made from herbs known for their application performances in the prevention and therapy of renal diseases, namely kidney stones and urinary infections (renal lithiasis, nephritis, urethritis, cystitis, etc.). This paper presents a comparative study of the medicinal plant extracts composition belonging to Ericaceae-Cranberry (fruit and leaves) - Vaccinium vitis-idaea L. and Bilberry (fruit) - Vaccinium myrtillus L. Concentrated extracts obtained from medicinal plants used in this work were analyzed from structural, morphological and compositional points of view using different techniques: chromatographic methods (HPLC), scanning electronic microscopy, infrared, and UV spectrophotometry, also by using kinetic model. Liquid chromatography was able to identify the specific compounds of the Ericaceae family, present in all three extracts, arbutosid, as well as specific components of each species, mostly from the class of polyphenols. The identification and quantitative determination of the active ingredients from these extracts can give information related to their therapeutic effects.

  2. SNW1 is a critical regulator of spatial BMP activity, neural plate border formation, and neural crest specification in vertebrate embryos.

    PubMed

    Wu, Mary Y; Ramel, Marie-Christine; Howell, Michael; Hill, Caroline S

    2011-01-01

    Bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) gradients provide positional information to direct cell fate specification, such as patterning of the vertebrate ectoderm into neural, neural crest, and epidermal tissues, with precise borders segregating these domains. However, little is known about how BMP activity is regulated spatially and temporally during vertebrate development to contribute to embryonic patterning, and more specifically to neural crest formation. Through a large-scale in vivo functional screen in Xenopus for neural crest fate, we identified an essential regulator of BMP activity, SNW1. SNW1 is a nuclear protein known to regulate gene expression. Using antisense morpholinos to deplete SNW1 protein in both Xenopus and zebrafish embryos, we demonstrate that dorsally expressed SNW1 is required for neural crest specification, and this is independent of mesoderm formation and gastrulation morphogenetic movements. By exploiting a combination of immunostaining for phosphorylated Smad1 in Xenopus embryos and a BMP-dependent reporter transgenic zebrafish line, we show that SNW1 regulates a specific domain of BMP activity in the dorsal ectoderm at the neural plate border at post-gastrula stages. We use double in situ hybridizations and immunofluorescence to show how this domain of BMP activity is spatially positioned relative to the neural crest domain and that of SNW1 expression. Further in vivo and in vitro assays using cell culture and tissue explants allow us to conclude that SNW1 acts upstream of the BMP receptors. Finally, we show that the requirement of SNW1 for neural crest specification is through its ability to regulate BMP activity, as we demonstrate that targeted overexpression of BMP to the neural plate border is sufficient to restore neural crest formation in Xenopus SNW1 morphants. We conclude that through its ability to regulate a specific domain of BMP activity in the vertebrate embryo, SNW1 is a critical regulator of neural plate border formation and

  3. Physical methods for generating and decoding neural activity in Hirudo verbana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Migliori, Benjamin John

    The interface between living nervous systems and hardware is an excellent proving ground for precision experimental methods and information classification systems. Nervous systems are complex (104 -- 10 15(!) connections), fragile, and highly active in intricate, constantly evolving patterns. However, despite the conveniently electrical nature of neural transmission, the interface between nervous systems and hardware poses significant experimental difficulties. As the desire for direct interfaces with neural signals continues to expand, the need for methods of generating and measuring neural activity with high spatiotemporal precision has become increasingly critical. In this thesis, I describe advances I have made in the ability to modify, generate, measure, and understand neural signals both in- and ex-vivo. I focus on methods developed for transmitting and extracting signals in the intact nervous system of Hirudo verbana (the medicinal leech), an animal with a minimally complex nervous system (10000 neurons distributed in packets along a nerve cord) that exhibits a diverse array of behaviors. To introduce artificial activity patterns, I developed a photothermal activation system in which a highly focused laser is used to irradiate carbon microparticles in contact with target neurons. The resulting local temperature increase generates an electrical current that forces the target neuron to fire neural signals, thereby providing a unique neural input mechanism. These neural signals can potentially be used to alter behavioral choice or generate specific behavioral output, and can be used endogenously in many animal models. I also describe new tools developed to expand the application of this method. In complement to this input system, I describe a new method of analyzing neural output signals involved in long-range coordination of behaviors. Leech behavioral signals are propagated between neural packets as electrical pulses in the nerve connective, a bundle of

  4. Neural Encoding of Odors during Active Sampling and in Turbulent Plumes.

    PubMed

    Huston, Stephen J; Stopfer, Mark; Cassenaer, Stijn; Aldworth, Zane N; Laurent, Gilles

    2015-10-21

    Sensory inputs are often fluctuating and intermittent, yet animals reliably utilize them to direct behavior. Here we ask how natural stimulus fluctuations influence the dynamic neural encoding of odors. Using the locust olfactory system, we isolated two main causes of odor intermittency: chaotic odor plumes and active sampling behaviors. Despite their irregularity, chaotic odor plumes still drove dynamic neural response features including the synchronization, temporal patterning, and short-term plasticity of spiking in projection neurons, enabling classifier-based stimulus identification and activating downstream decoders (Kenyon cells). Locusts can also impose odor intermittency through active sampling movements with their unrestrained antennae. Odors triggered immediate, spatially targeted antennal scanning that, paradoxically, weakened individual neural responses. However, these frequent but weaker responses were highly informative about stimulus location. Thus, not only are odor-elicited dynamic neural responses compatible with natural stimulus fluctuations and important for stimulus identification, but locusts actively increase intermittency, possibly to improve stimulus localization. PMID:26456047

  5. Neural encoding of odors during active sampling and in turbulent plumes

    PubMed Central

    Huston, Stephen J.; Stopfer, Mark; Cassenaer, Stijn; Aldworth, Zane N.; Laurent, Gilles

    2016-01-01

    Summary Sensory inputs are often fluctuating and intermittent, yet animals reliably utilize them to direct behavior. Here we ask how natural stimulus fluctuations influence the dynamic neural encoding of odors. Using the locust olfactory system, we isolated two main causes of odor intermittency: chaotic odor plumes and active sampling behaviors. Despite their irregularity, chaotic odor plumes still drove dynamic neural response features including the synchronization, temporal patterning, and short-term plasticity of spiking in projection neurons, enabling classifier-based stimulus identification and activating downstream decoders (Kenyon cells). Locusts can also impose odor intermittency through active sampling movements with their unrestrained antennae. Odors triggered immediate, spatially-targeted antennal scanning that, paradoxically, weakened individual neural responses. However, these frequent but weaker responses were highly informative about stimulus location. Thus, not only are odor-elicited dynamic neural responses compatible with natural stimulus fluctuations and important for stimulus identification, but locusts actively increase intermittency, possibly to improve stimulus localization. PMID:26456047

  6. Neural activity patterns evoked by a spouse's incongruent emotional reactions when recalling marriage-relevant experiences.

    PubMed

    Petrican, Raluca; Rosenbaum, Rachel Shayna; Grady, Cheryl

    2015-10-01

    Resonance with the inner states of another social actor is regarded as a hallmark of emotional closeness. Nevertheless, sensitivity to potential incongruities between one's own and an intimate partner's subjective experience is reportedly also important for close relationship quality. Here, we tested whether perceivers show greater neurobehavioral responsiveness to a spouse's positive (rather than negative) context-incongruent emotions, and whether this effect is influenced by the perceiver's satisfaction with the relationship. Thus, we used fMRI to scan older long-term married female perceivers while they judged either their spouse's or a stranger's affect, based on incongruent nonverbal and verbal cues. The verbal cues were selected to evoke strongly polarized affective responses. Higher perceiver marital satisfaction predicted greater neural processing of the spouse's (rather than the strangers) nonverbal cues. Nevertheless, across all perceivers, greater neural processing of a spouse's (rather than a stranger's) nonverbal behavior was reliably observed only when the behavior was positive and the context was negative. The spouse's positive (rather than negative) nonverbal behavior evoked greater activity in putative mirror neuron areas, such as the bilateral inferior parietal lobule (IPL). This effect was related to a stronger inhibitory influence of cognitive control areas on mirror system activity in response to a spouse's negative nonverbal cues, an effect that strengthened with increasing perceiver marital satisfaction. Our valence-asymmetric findings imply that neurobehavioral responsiveness to a close other's emotions may depend, at least partly, on cognitive control resources, which are used to support the perceiver's interpersonal goals (here, goals that are relevant to relationship stability).

  7. Neural correlates of cross-modal affective priming by music in Williams syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lense, Miriam D; Gordon, Reyna L; Key, Alexandra P F; Dykens, Elisabeth M

    2014-04-01

    Emotional connection is the main reason people engage with music, and the emotional features of music can influence processing in other domains. Williams syndrome (WS) is a neurodevelopmental genetic disorder where musicality and sociability are prominent aspects of the phenotype. This study examined oscillatory brain activity during a musical affective priming paradigm. Participants with WS and age-matched typically developing controls heard brief emotional musical excerpts or emotionally neutral sounds and then reported the emotional valence (happy/sad) of subsequently presented faces. Participants with WS demonstrated greater evoked fronto-central alpha activity to the happy vs sad musical excerpts. The size of these alpha effects correlated with parent-reported emotional reactivity to music. Although participant groups did not differ in accuracy of identifying facial emotions, reaction time data revealed a music priming effect only in persons with WS, who responded faster when the face matched the emotional valence of the preceding musical excerpt vs when the valence differed. Matching emotional valence was also associated with greater evoked gamma activity thought to reflect cross-modal integration. This effect was not present in controls. The results suggest a specific connection between music and socioemotional processing and have implications for clinical and educational approaches for WS.

  8. Distinct neural activation patterns underlie economic decisions in high and low psychopathy scorers

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Pedro R.; Ferreira-Santos, Fernando; Barbosa, Fernando; Marques-Teixeira, João; Marsh, Abigail A.

    2014-01-01

    Psychopathic traits affect social functioning and the ability to make adaptive decisions in social interactions. This study investigated how psychopathy affects the neural mechanisms that are recruited to make decisions in the ultimatum game. Thirty-five adult participants recruited from the community underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning while they performed the ultimatum game under high and low cognitive load. Across load conditions, high psychopathy scorers rejected unfair offers in the same proportion as low scorers, but perceived them as less unfair. Among low scorers, the perceived fairness of offers predicted acceptance rates, whereas in high scorers no association was found. Imaging results revealed that responses in each group were associated with distinct patterns of brain activation, indicating divergent decision mechanisms. Acceptance of unfair offers was associated with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex activity in low scorers and ventromedial prefrontal cortex activity in high scorers. Overall, our findings point to distinct motivations for rejecting unfair offers in individuals who vary in psychopathic traits, with rejections in high psychopathy scorers being probably induced by frustration. Implications of these results for models of ventromedial prefrontal cortex dysfunction in psychopathy are discussed. PMID:23748499

  9. The neural correlates of affect reading: an fMRI study on faces and gestures.

    PubMed

    Prochnow, D; Höing, B; Kleiser, R; Lindenberg, R; Wittsack, H-J; Schäfer, R; Franz, M; Seitz, R J

    2013-01-15

    As complex social beings, people communicate, in addition to spoken language, also via nonverbal behavior. In social face-to-face situations, people readily read the affect and intentions of others in their face expressions and gestures recognizing their meaning. Importantly, the addressee further has to discriminate the meanings of the seen communicative motor acts in order to be able to react upon them appropriately. In this functional magnetic resonance imaging study 15 healthy non-alexithymic right-handers observed video-clips that showed the dynamic evolution of emotional face expressions and gestures evolving from a neutral to a fully developed expression. We aimed at disentangling the cerebral circuits related to the observation of the incomplete and the subsequent discrimination of the evolved bodily expressions of emotion which are typical for everyday social situations. We show that the inferior temporal gyrus and the inferior and dorsal medial frontal cortex in both cerebral hemispheres were activated early in recognizing faces and gestures, while their subsequent discrimination involved the right dorsolateral frontal cortex. Interregional correlations showed that the involved regions constituted a widespread circuit allowing for a formal analysis of the seen expressions, their empathic processing and the subjective interpretation of their contextual meanings. Right-left comparisons revealed a greater activation of the right dorsal medial frontal cortex and the inferior temporal gyrus which supports the notion of a right hemispheric dominance for processing affective body expressions. These novel data provide a neurobiological basis for the intuitive understanding of other people which is relevant for socially appropriate decisions and intact social functioning.

  10. The neural correlates of affect reading: an fMRI study on faces and gestures.

    PubMed

    Prochnow, D; Höing, B; Kleiser, R; Lindenberg, R; Wittsack, H-J; Schäfer, R; Franz, M; Seitz, R J

    2013-01-15

    As complex social beings, people communicate, in addition to spoken language, also via nonverbal behavior. In social face-to-face situations, people readily read the affect and intentions of others in their face expressions and gestures recognizing their meaning. Importantly, the addressee further has to discriminate the meanings of the seen communicative motor acts in order to be able to react upon them appropriately. In this functional magnetic resonance imaging study 15 healthy non-alexithymic right-handers observed video-clips that showed the dynamic evolution of emotional face expressions and gestures evolving from a neutral to a fully developed expression. We aimed at disentangling the cerebral circuits related to the observation of the incomplete and the subsequent discrimination of the evolved bodily expressions of emotion which are typical for everyday social situations. We show that the inferior temporal gyrus and the inferior and dorsal medial frontal cortex in both cerebral hemispheres were activated early in recognizing faces and gestures, while their subsequent discrimination involved the right dorsolateral frontal cortex. Interregional correlations showed that the involved regions constituted a widespread circuit allowing for a formal analysis of the seen expressions, their empathic processing and the subjective interpretation of their contextual meanings. Right-left comparisons revealed a greater activation of the right dorsal medial frontal cortex and the inferior temporal gyrus which supports the notion of a right hemispheric dominance for processing affective body expressions. These novel data provide a neurobiological basis for the intuitive understanding of other people which is relevant for socially appropriate decisions and intact social functioning. PMID:22981562

  11. Isolation of Mutations Affecting Neural Circuitry Required for Grooming Behavior in Drosophila Melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Phillis, R. W.; Bramlage, A. T.; Wotus, C.; Whittaker, A.; Gramates, L. S.; Seppala, D.; Farahanchi, F.; Caruccio, P.; Murphey, R. K.

    1993-01-01

    We have developed a screen for the isolation of mutations that produce neural defects in adult Drosophila melanogaster. In this screen, we identify mutants as flies unable to remove a light coating of applied dust in a 2-hr period. We have recovered and characterized six mutations and have found that they produce coordination defects and some have reduced levels of reflex responsiveness to the stimulation of single tactile sensory bristles. The grooming defects produced by all six of the mutations are recessive, and each of the mutations has been genetically mapped. We have also used our assay to test the grooming ability of stocks containing mutations that produce known neural defects. PMID:8454205

  12. Affective Response to a Loved One's Pain: Insula Activity as a Function of Individual Differences

    PubMed Central

    Mazzola, Viridiana; Latorre, Valeria; Petito, Annamaria; Gentili, Nicoletta; Fazio, Leonardo; Popolizio, Teresa; Blasi, Giuseppe; Arciero, Giampiero; Bondolfi, Guido

    2010-01-01

    Individual variability in emotion processing may be associated with genetic variation as well as with psychological predispositions such as dispositional affect styles. Our previous fMRI study demonstrated that amygdala reactivity was independently predicted by affective-cognitive styles (phobic prone or eating disorders prone) and genotype of the serotonin transporter in a discrimination task of fearful facial expressions. Since the insula is associated with the subjective evaluation of bodily states and is involved in human feelings, we explored whether its activity could also vary in function of individual differences. In the present fMRI study, the association between dispositional affects and insula reactivity has been examined in two groups of healthy participants categorized according to affective-cognitive styles (phobic prone or eating disorders prone). Images of the faces of partners and strangers, in both painful and neutral situations, were used as visual stimuli. Interaction analyses indicate significantly different activations in the two groups in reaction to a loved one's pain: the phobic prone group exhibited greater activation in the left posterior insula. These results demonstrate that affective-cognitive style is associated with insula activity in pain empathy processing, suggesting a greater involvement of the insula in feelings for a certain cohort of people. In the mapping of individual differences, these results shed new light on variability in neural networks of emotion. PMID:21179564

  13. Does compensatory neural activity survive old-old age?

    PubMed

    Daffner, Kirk R; Sun, Xue; Tarbi, Elise C; Rentz, Dorene M; Holcomb, Phillip J; Riis, Jenna L

    2011-01-01

    One mechanism that may allow older adults to continue to successfully perform certain cognitive tasks is to allocate more resources than their younger counterparts. Most prior studies have not included individuals beyond their 70s. Here, we investigated whether compensatory increases in neural activity previously observed in cognitively high-performing young-old adults would continue into old-old age. Event-related potentials were recorded from 72 cognitively high performing subjects, aged 18 to 96 years old, while they participated in a subject-controlled novelty oddball paradigm in which they determined viewing duration of standard, target, and novel visual stimuli. Compared to young and middle-aged subjects, both young-old and old-old subjects exhibited an impairment of preliminary mismatch/match detection operations, indexed by an attenuated anterior N2 component. This may have placed a greater burden on the subsequent controlled decision-making process, indexed by the P3, necessitating the allocation of more resources. The relationship between age and resource allocation, as measured by P3 amplitude, from midlife to very old age (45-96 years old) followed an inverted u-shaped curve (quadratic function). It peaked between the late 60s and early 70s. Thereafter, there was an inverse relationship between age and resource appropriation. This relationship remained significant after controlling for differences in task performance and MMSE. Examining the size of the P3 component across different age groups suggests that although cognitively high performing adults in their early 80s exhibit a reduction in P3 amplitude, they have a relatively well-preserved capacity to appropriate resources. However, by the late 80s, there is a robust decline (relative to young-old adults) in the size of the P3. Our results indicate that when carrying out controlled processing linked to directing attention to salient events, cognitively high performers reach the boundary of their

  14. Imaging evolutionarily conserved neural networks: preferential activation of the olfactory system by food-related odor.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, Praveen; Stolberg, Tara; Sullivanjr, J M; Ferris, Craig F

    2012-04-21

    Rodents routinely forge and rely on hippocampal-dependent spatial memory to guide them to sources of caloric rich food in their environment. Has evolution affected the olfactory system and its connections to the hippocampus and limbic cortex, so rodents have an innate sensitivity to energy rich food and their location? To test this notion, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging in awake rats to observe changes in brain activity in response to four odors: benzaldehyde (almond odor), isoamyl acetate (banana odor), methyl benzoate (rosy odor), and limonene (citrus odor). We chose the almond odor because nuts are high in calories and would be expected to convey greater valance as compared to the other odors. Moreover, the standard food chow is devoid of nuts, so laboratory bred rats would not have any previous exposure to this food. Activation maps derived from computational analysis using a 3D segmented rat MRI atlas were dramatically different between odors. Animals exposed to banana, rosy and citrus odors showed modest activation of the primary olfactory system, hippocampus and limbic cortex. However, animals exposed to almond showed a robust increase in brain activity in the primary olfactory system particularly the main olfactory bulb, anterior olfactory nucleus and tenia tecta. The most significant difference in brain activation between odors was observed in the hippocampus and limbic cortex. These findings show that fMRI can be used to identify neural circuits that have an innate sensitivity to environmental stimuli that may help in an animal's survival. PMID:22343130

  15. Chronic Social Stress in Puberty Alters Appetitive Male Sexual Behavior and Neural Metabolic Activity

    PubMed Central

    Bastida, Christel C.; Puga, Frank; Gonzalez-Lima, Francisco; Jennings, Kimberly J.; Wommack, Joel C.; Delville, Yvon

    2014-01-01

    Repeated social subjugation in early puberty lowers testosterone levels. We used hamsters to investigate the effects of social subjugation on male sexual behavior and metabolic activity within neural systems controlling social and motivational behaviors. Subjugated animals were exposed daily to aggressive adult males in early puberty for postnatal days 28 to 42, while control animals were placed in empty clean cages. On postnatal day 45, they were tested for male sexual behavior in the presence of receptive female. Alternatively, they were tested for mate choice after placement at the base of a Y-maze containing a sexually receptive female in one tip of the maze and an ovariectomized one on the other. Social subjugation did not affect the capacity to mate with receptive females. Although control animals were fast to approach females and preferred ovariectomized individuals, subjugated animals stayed away from them and showed no preference. Cytochrome oxidase activity was reduced within the preoptic area and ventral tegmental area in subjugated hamsters. In addition, the correlation of metabolic activity of these areas with the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and anterior parietal cortex changed significantly from positive in controls to negative in subjugated animals. These data show that at mid-puberty, while male hamsters are capable of mating, their appetitive sexual behavior is not fully mature and this aspect of male sexual behavior is responsive to social subjugation. Furthermore, metabolic activity and coordination of activity in brain areas related to sexual behavior and motivation was altered by social subjugation. PMID:24852486

  16. Motivation alters response bias and neural activation patterns in a perceptual decision-making task.

    PubMed

    Reckless, G E; Bolstad, I; Nakstad, P H; Andreassen, O A; Jensen, J

    2013-05-15

    Motivation has been demonstrated to affect individuals' response strategies in economic decision-making, however, little is known about how motivation influences perceptual decision-making behavior or its related neural activity. Given the important role motivation plays in shaping our behavior, a better understanding of this relationship is needed. A block-design, continuous performance, perceptual decision-making task where participants were asked to detect a picture of an animal among distractors was used during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The effect of positive and negative motivation on sustained activity within regions of the brain thought to underlie decision-making was examined by altering the monetary contingency associated with the task. In addition, signal detection theory was used to investigate the effect of motivation on detection sensitivity, response bias and response time. While both positive and negative motivation resulted in increased sustained activation in the ventral striatum, fusiform gyrus, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and ventromedial prefrontal cortex, only negative motivation resulted in the adoption of a more liberal, closer to optimal response bias. This shift toward a liberal response bias correlated with increased activation in the left DLPFC, but did not result in improved task performance. The present findings suggest that motivation alters aspects of the way perceptual decisions are made. Further, this altered response behavior is reflected in a change in left DLPFC activation, a region involved in the computation of perceptual decisions.

  17. Model-based choices involve prospective neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Doll, Bradley B.; Duncan, Katherine D.; Simon, Dylan A.; Shohamy, Daphna; Daw, Nathaniel D.

    2015-01-01

    Decisions may arise via “model-free” repetition of previously reinforced actions, or by “model-based” evaluation, which is widely thought to follow from prospective anticipation of action consequences using a learned map or model. While choices and neural correlates of decision variables sometimes reflect knowledge of their consequences, it remains unclear whether this actually arises from prospective evaluation. Using functional MRI and a sequential reward-learning task in which paths contained decodable object categories, we found that humans’ model-based choices were associated with neural signatures of future paths observed at decision time, suggesting a prospective mechanism for choice. Prospection also covaried with the degree of model-based influences on neural correlates of decision variables, and was inversely related to prediction error signals thought to underlie model-free learning. These results dissociate separate mechanisms underlying model-based and model-free evaluation and support the hypothesis that model-based influences on choices and neural decision variables result from prospection. PMID:25799041

  18. The fiber-optic imaging and manipulation of neural activity during animal behavior.

    PubMed

    Miyamoto, Daisuke; Murayama, Masanori

    2016-02-01

    Recent progress with optogenetic probes for imaging and manipulating neural activity has further increased the relevance of fiber-optic systems for neural circuitry research. Optical fibers, which bi-directionally transmit light between separate sites (even at a distance of several meters), can be used for either optical imaging or manipulating neural activity relevant to behavioral circuitry mechanisms. The method's flexibility and the specifications of the light structure are well suited for following the behavior of freely moving animals. Furthermore, thin optical fibers allow researchers to monitor neural activity from not only the cortical surface but also deep brain regions, including the hippocampus and amygdala. Such regions are difficult to target with two-photon microscopes. Optogenetic manipulation of neural activity with an optical fiber has the advantage of being selective for both cell-types and projections as compared to conventional electrophysiological brain tissue stimulation. It is difficult to extract any data regarding changes in neural activity solely from a fiber-optic manipulation device; however, the readout of data is made possible by combining manipulation with electrophysiological recording, or the simultaneous application of optical imaging and manipulation using a bundle-fiber. The present review introduces recent progress in fiber-optic imaging and manipulation methods, while also discussing fiber-optic system designs that are suitable for a given experimental protocol.

  19. Neuritin: a gene induced by neural activity and neurotrophins that promotes neuritogenesis.

    PubMed

    Naeve, G S; Ramakrishnan, M; Kramer, R; Hevroni, D; Citri, Y; Theill, L E

    1997-03-18

    Neural activity and neurotrophins induce synaptic remodeling in part by altering gene expression. A cDNA encoding a glycosylphoshatidylinositol-anchored protein was identified by screening for hippocampal genes that are induced by neural activity. This molecule, named neuritin, is expressed in postmitotic-differentiating neurons of the developing nervous system and neuronal structures associated with plasticity in the adult. Neuritin message is induced by neuronal activity and by the activity-regulated neurotrophins BDNF and NT-3. Purified recombinant neuritin promotes neurite outgrowth and arborization in primary embryonic hippocampal and cortical cultures. These data implicate neuritin as a downstream effector of activity-induced neurite outgrowth. PMID:9122250

  20. Crossmodal deficit in dyslexic children: practice affects the neural timing of letter-speech sound integration

    PubMed Central

    Žarić, Gojko; Fraga González, Gorka; Tijms, Jurgen; van der Molen, Maurits W.; Blomert, Leo; Bonte, Milene

    2015-01-01

    A failure to build solid letter-speech sound associations may contribute to reading impairments in developmental dyslexia. Whether this reduced neural integration of letters and speech sounds changes over time within individual children and how this relates to behavioral gains in reading skills remains unknown. In this research, we examined changes in event-related potential (ERP) measures of letter-speech sound integration over a 6-month period during which 9-year-old dyslexic readers (n = 17) followed a training in letter-speech sound coupling next to their regular reading curriculum. We presented the Dutch spoken vowels /a/ and /o/ as standard and deviant stimuli in one auditory and two audiovisual oddball conditions. In one audiovisual condition (AV0), the letter “a” was presented simultaneously with the vowels, while in the other (AV200) it was preceding vowel onset for 200 ms. Prior to the training (T1), dyslexic readers showed the expected pattern of typical auditory mismatch responses, together with the absence of letter-speech sound effects in a late negativity (LN) window. After the training (T2), our results showed earlier (and enhanced) crossmodal effects in the LN window. Most interestingly, earlier LN latency at T2 was significantly related to higher behavioral accuracy in letter-speech sound coupling. On a more general level, the timing of the earlier mismatch negativity (MMN) in the simultaneous condition (AV0) measured at T1, significantly related to reading fluency at both T1 and T2 as well as with reading gains. Our findings suggest that the reduced neural integration of letters and speech sounds in dyslexic children may show moderate improvement with reading instruction and training and that behavioral improvements relate especially to individual differences in the timing of this neural integration. PMID:26157382

  1. Differential neural processing of unpleasant haptic sensations in somatic and affective partitions of the insula in non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI).

    PubMed

    Bonenberger, Martina; Plener, Paul L; Groschwitz, Rebecca C; Grön, Georg; Abler, Birgit

    2015-12-30

    Altered perception and neural processing of pain have been observed during non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). Evidence suggests that this phenomenon could be associated with the affective rather than the somatosensory dimension of pain. Sub-partitions of the insula have been suggested to process these different aspects differentially. In the present study, activation within the posterior, middle, and anterior partitions of the insula upon unpleasant electric stimulation was compared between subjects with a history of NSSI and healthy controls. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated a sample of 30 subjects, 14 of them with a lifetime history of NSSI. Unpleasant electric stimulation to the dorsum of the non-dominant hand was performed at four levels of increasing intensity. Significantly increasing posterior insula activation, which is likely to reflect the somatosensory aspects of unpleasant haptic sensations, was found upon parametrically increasing electric stimulation in both groups. By contrast, activation of the anterior insula, rather related to the more affective aspects of distressing stimuli, was significantly modulated only in the control group, but not in subjects with NSSI. These findings may support present hypotheses of altered processing of the more affective aspects of unpleasant or distressing experiences in NSSI, as a putatively relevant factor for understanding the etiology of this behavior.

  2. The transcription factor Pou3f1 promotes neural fate commitment via activation of neural lineage genes and inhibition of external signaling pathways.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Qingqing; Song, Lu; Peng, Guangdun; Sun, Na; Chen, Jun; Zhang, Ting; Sheng, Nengyin; Tang, Wei; Qian, Cheng; Qiao, Yunbo; Tang, Ke; Han, Jing-Dong Jackie; Li, Jinsong; Jing, Naihe

    2014-01-01

    The neural fate commitment of pluripotent stem cells requires the repression of extrinsic inhibitory signals and the activation of intrinsic positive transcription factors. However, how these two events are integrated to ensure appropriate neural conversion remains unclear. In this study, we showed that Pou3f1 is essential for the neural differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs), specifically during the transition from epiblast stem cells (EpiSCs) to neural progenitor cells (NPCs). Chimeric analysis showed that Pou3f1 knockdown leads to a markedly decreased incorporation of ESCs in the neuroectoderm. By contrast, Pou3f1-overexpressing ESC derivatives preferentially contribute to the neuroectoderm. Genome-wide ChIP-seq and RNA-seq analyses indicated that Pou3f1 is an upstream activator of neural lineage genes, and also is a repressor of BMP and Wnt signaling. Our results established that Pou3f1 promotes the neural fate commitment of pluripotent stem cells through a dual role, activating internal neural induction programs and antagonizing extrinsic neural inhibitory signals.

  3. Global familiarity of visual stimuli affects repetition-related neural plasticity but not repetition priming

    PubMed Central

    Soldan, Anja; Zarahn, Eric; Hilton, H. John; Stern, Yaakov

    2007-01-01

    In this study we tested the prediction of the component process model of priming (Henson, 2003) that repetition priming of familiar and unfamiliar objects produces qualitatively different neural repetition effects. In an fMRI study, subjects viewed four repetitions of familiar objects and globally unfamiliar objects with familiar components. Reliable behavioral priming occurred for both item types across the four presentations and was of a similar magnitude for both stimulus types. The imaging data was analyzed using multivariate linear modeling, which permits explicit testing of the hypothesis that the repetition effects for familiar and unfamiliar objects are qualitatively different (i.e., non-scaled versions of one another). The results showed the presence of two qualitatively different latent spatial patterns of repetition effects from presenation one to presentation four for familiar and unfamilar objects, indicating that familiarity with an object’s global structural, semantic, or lexical features is an important factor in priming-related neural plasticity. The first latent spatial pattern strongly weighted regions with a similar repetition effect for both item types. The second pattern strongly weighted regions contributing a repetition suppression effect for the familiar objects and repetition enhancement for the unfamiliar objects, particularly the posterior insula, superior temporal gyrus, precentral gyrus, and cingulate cortex. This differential repetition effect might reflect the formation of novel memory representations for the unfamiliar items, which already exist for the familiar objects, consistent with the component-process model of priming. PMID:17913513

  4. Endothelial cells promote neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation associated with VEGF activated Notch and Pten signaling.

    PubMed

    Sun, Jinqiao; Zhou, Wenhao; Ma, Duan; Yang, Yi

    2010-09-01

    To investigate whether and how endothelial cells affect neurogenesis, we established a system to co-culture endothelial cells and brain slices of neonatal rat and observed how subventricular zone cells differentiate in the presence of endothelial cells. In the presence of endothelial cells, neural stem cells increased in number, as did differentiated neurons and glia. The augmentation of neurogenesis was reversed by diminishing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression in endothelial cells with RNA interference (RNAi). Microarray analysis indicated that expression levels of 112 genes were significantly altered by co-culture and that expression of 81 of the 112 genes recovered to normal levels following RNAi of VEGF in endothelial cells. Pathway mapping showed an enrichment of genes in the Notch and Pten pathways. These data indicate that endothelial cells promote neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation associated with VEGF, possibly by activating the Notch and Pten pathways.

  5. Explorative data analysis for changes in neural activity.

    PubMed

    Blythe, Duncan A J; Meinecke, Frank C; von Bünau, Paul; Müller, Klaus-Robert

    2013-04-01

    Neural recordings are non-stationary time series, i.e. their properties typically change over time. Identifying specific changes, e.g., those induced by a learning task, can shed light on the underlying neural processes. However, such changes of interest are often masked by strong unrelated changes, which can be of physiological origin or due to measurement artifacts. We propose a novel algorithm for disentangling such different causes of non-stationarity and in this manner enable better neurophysiological interpretation for a wider set of experimental paradigms. A key ingredient is the repeated application of Stationary Subspace Analysis (SSA) using different temporal scales. The usefulness of our explorative approach is demonstrated in simulations, theory and EEG experiments with 80 brain-computer interfacing subjects.

  6. A role for correlated spontaneous activity in the assembly of neural circuits

    PubMed Central

    Kirkby, Lowry; Sack, Georgeann; Firl, Alana; Feller, Marla B.

    2015-01-01

    Before the onset of sensory transduction, developing neural circuits spontaneously generate correlated activity in distinct spatial and temporal patterns. During this period of patterned activity, sensory maps develop and initial coarse connections are refined, which are critical steps in the establishment of adult neural circuits. Over the last decade there has been substantial evidence that altering the pattern of spontaneous activity disrupts refinement, but the mechanistic understanding of this process remains incomplete. In this review, we discuss recent experimental and theoretical progress towards the process of activity-dependent refinement, focusing on circuits in the visual, auditory and motor systems. While many outstanding questions remain, the combination of several novel approaches have brought us closer to a comprehensive understanding of how complex neural circuits are established by patterned spontaneous activity during development. PMID:24314725

  7. Coupling of total hemoglobin concentration, oxygenation, and neural activity in rat somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Devor, Anna; Dunn, Andrew K; Andermann, Mark L; Ulbert, Istvan; Boas, David A; Dale, Anders M

    2003-07-17

    Recent advances in brain imaging techniques, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), offer great promise for noninvasive mapping of brain function. However, the indirect nature of the imaging signals to the underlying neural activity limits the interpretation of the resulting maps. The present report represents the first systematic study with sufficient statistical power to quantitatively characterize the relationship between changes in blood oxygen content and the neural spiking and synaptic activity. Using two-dimensional optical measurements of hemodynamic signals, simultaneous recordings of neural activity, and an event-related stimulus paradigm, we demonstrate that (1) there is a strongly nonlinear relationship between electrophysiological measures of neuronal activity and the hemodynamic response, (2) the hemodynamic response continues to grow beyond the saturation of electrical activity, and (3) the initial increase in deoxyhemoglobin that precedes an increase in blood volume is counterbalanced by an equal initial decrease in oxyhemoglobin. PMID:12873390

  8. Active control of vibration using a neural network.

    PubMed

    Snyder, S D; Tanaka, N

    1995-01-01

    Feedforward control of sound and vibration using a neural network-based control system is considered, with the aim being to derive an architecture/algorithm combination which is capable of supplanting the commonly used finite impulse response filter/filtered-x least mean square (LMS) linear arrangement for certain nonlinear problems. An adaptive algorithm is derived which enables stable adaptation of the neural controller for this purpose, while providing the capacity to maintain causality within the control scheme. The algorithm is shown to be simply a generalization of the linear filtered-x LMS algorithm. Experiments are undertaken which demonstrate the utility of the proposed arrangement, showing that it performs as well as a linear control system for a linear control problem and better for a nonlinear control problem. The experiments also lead to the conclusion that more work is required to improve the predictability and consistency of the performance before the neural network controller becomes a practical alternative to the current linear feedforward systems.

  9. Dynamical Behaviors of Multiple Equilibria in Competitive Neural Networks With Discontinuous Nonmonotonic Piecewise Linear Activation Functions.

    PubMed

    Nie, Xiaobing; Zheng, Wei Xing

    2016-03-01

    This paper addresses the problem of coexistence and dynamical behaviors of multiple equilibria for competitive neural networks. First, a general class of discontinuous nonmonotonic piecewise linear activation functions is introduced for competitive neural networks. Then based on the fixed point theorem and theory of strict diagonal dominance matrix, it is shown that under some conditions, such n -neuron competitive neural networks can have 5(n) equilibria, among which 3(n) equilibria are locally stable and the others are unstable. More importantly, it is revealed that the neural networks with the discontinuous activation functions introduced in this paper can have both more total equilibria and locally stable equilibria than the ones with other activation functions, such as the continuous Mexican-hat-type activation function and discontinuous two-level activation function. Furthermore, the 3(n) locally stable equilibria given in this paper are located in not only saturated regions, but also unsaturated regions, which is different from the existing results on multistability of neural networks with multiple level activation functions. A simulation example is provided to illustrate and validate the theoretical findings.

  10. Neural Network approach to assess the thermal affected zone around the injection well in a groundwater heat pump system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lo Russo, Stefano; Taddia, Glenda; Verda, Vittorio

    2014-05-01

    The common use of well doublets for groundwater-sourced heating or cooling results in a thermal plume of colder or warmer re-injected groundwater known as the Thermal Affected Zone(TAZ). The plumes may be regarded either as a potential anthropogenic geothermal resource or as pollution, depending on downstream aquifer usage. A fundamental aspect in groundwater heat pump (GWHP) plant design is the correct evaluation of the thermally affected zone that develops around the injection well. Temperature anomalies are detected through numerical methods. Crucial elements in the process of thermal impact assessment are the sizes of installations, their position, the heating/cooling load of the building, and the temperature drop/increase imposed on the re-injected water flow. For multiple-well schemes, heterogeneous aquifers, or variable heating and cooling loads, numerical models that simulate groundwater and heat transport are needed. These tools should consider numerous scenarios obtained considering different heating/cooling loads, positions, and operating modes. Computational fluid dynamic (CFD) models are widely used in this field because they offer the opportunity to calculate the time evolution of the thermal plume produced by a heat pump, depending on the characteristics of the subsurface and the heat pump. Nevertheless, these models require large computational efforts, and therefore their use may be limited to a reasonable number of scenarios. Neural networks could represent an alternative to CFD for assessing the TAZ under different scenarios referring to a specific site. The use of neural networks is proposed to determine the time evolution of the groundwater temperature downstream of an installation as a function of the possible utilization profiles of the heat pump. The main advantage of neural network modeling is the possibility of evaluating a large number of scenarios in a very short time, which is very useful for the preliminary analysis of future multiple

  11. Enhanced neural activity in frontal and cerebellar circuits after cognitive training in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    PubMed

    Hoekzema, Elseline; Carmona, Susanna; Tremols, Virginia; Gispert, Joan Domingo; Guitart, Marc; Fauquet, Jordi; Rovira, Mariana; Bielsa, Anna; Soliva, Juan Carlos; Tomas, Xavier; Bulbena, Antonio; Ramos-Quiroga, Antoni; Casas, Miguel; Tobeña, Adolf; Vilarroya, Oscar

    2010-12-01

    The brain is a plastic entity that can undergo dynamic changes throughout the lifespan as a result of training. Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is commonly treated with psychostimulant medication, and the prevalence of ADHD medication prescription is a topic of heated scientific debate. In addition, cognitive training is frequently provided to patients with ADHD. Although psychostimulant effects have been thoroughly investigated, no previous studies have assessed the neural effects of cognitive training in ADHD. We applied fMRI-paradigms of response inhibition and selective attention to chart the effects of a 10-day cognitive training program in 19 unmedicated ADHD children receiving either cognitive or control training. The two resulting longitudinal datasets were analyzed using whole-brain random-effects general linear models. Although we observed no increases of activity in the control group, both fMRI-datasets revealed enhanced activity after cognitive training in neural structures closely related to ADHD pathophysiology. On the inhibition paradigm, our results indicated increases in orbitofrontal, superior frontal, middle temporal, and inferior frontal cortex. The attentional task was characterized by increased activity in the cerebellum, which correlated with improvement on in-scanner measures of attention. Our findings provide preliminary evidence that cognitive training enhances activity in neural structures typically affected by the disorder. Similar results have been obtained following methylphenidate administration, suggesting that training of cognitive functions may mimic the effects of psychostimulant medication on the brain. These findings postulate a neural account for the potency of cognitive training in ADHD, and hold clinical implications, supporting the inclusion of training programs in standard ADHD-treatment. PMID:20336653

  12. Intersubject variability in fearful face processing: the link between behavior and neural activation.

    PubMed

    Doty, Tracy J; Japee, Shruti; Ingvar, Martin; Ungerleider, Leslie G

    2014-12-01

    Stimuli that signal threat show considerable variability in the extents to which they enhance behavior, even among healthy individuals. However, the neural underpinning of this behavioral variability is not well understood. By manipulating expectation of threat in an fMRI study of fearful versus neutral face categorization, we uncovered a network of areas underlying variability in threat processing in healthy adults. We explicitly altered expectations by presenting face images at three different expectation levels: 80 %, 50 %, and 20 %. Subjects were instructed to report as quickly and accurately as possible whether the face was fearful (signaled threat) or not. An uninformative cue preceded each face by 4 s. By taking the difference between reaction times (RTs) to fearful and neutral faces, we quantified an overall fear RT bias (i.e., faster to fearful than to neutral faces) for each subject. This bias correlated positively with late-trial fMRI activation (8 s after the face) during unexpected-fearful-face trials in bilateral ventromedial prefrontal cortex, the left subgenual cingulate cortex, and the right caudate nucleus, and correlated negatively with early-trial fMRI activation (4 s after the cue) during expected-neutral-face trials in bilateral dorsal striatum and the right ventral striatum. These results demonstrate that the variability in threat processing among healthy adults is reflected not only in behavior, but also in the magnitude of activation in medial prefrontal and striatal regions that appear to encode affective value.

  13. Intersubject Variability in Fearful Face Processing: The Link Between Behavior and Neural Activation

    PubMed Central

    Doty, Tracy J.; Japee, Shruti; Ingvar, Martin; Ungerleider, Leslie G.

    2014-01-01

    Stimuli that signal threat show considerable variability in the extent to which they enhance behavior, even among healthy individuals. However, the neural underpinning of this behavioral variability is not well understood. By manipulating expectation of threat in an fMRI study of fearful vs. neutral face categorization, we uncovered a network of areas underlying variability in threat processing in healthy adults. We explicitly altered expectation by presenting face images at three different expectation levels: 80%, 50%, and 20%. Subjects were instructed to report as fast and as accurately as possible whether the face was fearful (signaled threat) or not. An uninformative cue preceded each face by 4 seconds (s). By taking the difference between response times (RT) to fearful compared to neutral faces, we quantified an overall fear RT bias (i.e. faster to fearful than neutral faces) for each subject. This bias correlated positively with late trial fMRI activation (8 s after the face) during unexpected fearful face trials in bilateral ventromedial prefrontal cortex, the left subgenual cingulate cortex, and the right caudate nucleus and correlated negatively with early trial fMRI activation (4 s after the cue) during expected neutral face trials in bilateral dorsal striatum and the right ventral striatum. These results demonstrate that the variability in threat processing among healthy adults is reflected not only in behavior but also in the magnitude of activation in medial prefrontal and striatal regions that appear to encode affective value. PMID:24841078

  14. Intersubject variability in fearful face processing: the link between behavior and neural activation.

    PubMed

    Doty, Tracy J; Japee, Shruti; Ingvar, Martin; Ungerleider, Leslie G

    2014-12-01

    Stimuli that signal threat show considerable variability in the extents to which they enhance behavior, even among healthy individuals. However, the neural underpinning of this behavioral variability is not well understood. By manipulating expectation of threat in an fMRI study of fearful versus neutral face categorization, we uncovered a network of areas underlying variability in threat processing in healthy adults. We explicitly altered expectations by presenting face images at three different expectation levels: 80 %, 50 %, and 20 %. Subjects were instructed to report as quickly and accurately as possible whether the face was fearful (signaled threat) or not. An uninformative cue preceded each face by 4 s. By taking the difference between reaction times (RTs) to fearful and neutral faces, we quantified an overall fear RT bias (i.e., faster to fearful than to neutral faces) for each subject. This bias correlated positively with late-trial fMRI activation (8 s after the face) during unexpected-fearful-face trials in bilateral ventromedial prefrontal cortex, the left subgenual cingulate cortex, and the right caudate nucleus, and correlated negatively with early-trial fMRI activation (4 s after the cue) during expected-neutral-face trials in bilateral dorsal striatum and the right ventral striatum. These results demonstrate that the variability in threat processing among healthy adults is reflected not only in behavior, but also in the magnitude of activation in medial prefrontal and striatal regions that appear to encode affective value. PMID:24841078

  15. Use of Artificial Neural Networks to Examine Parameters Affecting the Immobilization of Streptokinase in Chitosan

    PubMed Central

    Modaresi, Seyed Mohamad Sadegh; Faramarzi, Mohammad Ali; Soltani, Arash; Baharifar, Hadi; Amani, Amir

    2014-01-01

    Streptokinase is a potent fibrinolytic agent which is widely used in treatment of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), pulmonary embolism (PE) and acute myocardial infarction (MI). Major limitation of this enzyme is its short biological half-life in the blood stream. Our previous report showed that complexing streptokinase with chitosan could be a solution to overcome this limitation. The aim of this research was to establish an artificial neural networks (ANNs) model for identifying main factors influencing the loading efficiency of streptokinase, as an essential parameter determining efficacy of the enzyme. Three variables, namely, chitosan concentration, buffer pH and enzyme concentration were considered as input values and the loading efficiency was used as output. Subsequently, the experimental data were modeled and the model was validated against a set of unseen data. The developed model indicated chitosan concentration as probably the most important factor, having reverse effect on the loading efficiency. PMID:25587327

  16. Neural substrates for the processing of cognitive and affective aspects of taste in the brain.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Takashi

    2006-12-01

    Taste is unique among the sensory systems in that, besides its recognition of quality, it is innately associated with hedonic aspects of reward and aversion. This review of the literature will show how taste information is conveyed through the central gustatory pathways to the cortical gustatory area and is processed in terms of qualitative and quantitative aspects. Taste information is also sent to the reward system and feeding center via several brain sites including the prefrontal cortex, insular cortex, and amygdala. The reward system contains the ventral tegmental area, nucleus accumbens, and ventral pallidum; it finally sends information to the lateral hypothalamic area, the feeding center. The dopamine system originating from the ventral tegmental area mediates the motivation to consume palatable food. The actual ingestive behavior is promoted by the orexigenic neuropeptides from the hypothalamus. In the last section, the neural substrate of learning and memory of taste is introduced and the biological mechanisms are elucidated. PMID:17287579

  17. The presence of a culturally similar or dissimilar social partner affects neural responses to emotional stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Woodcock, Kate A.; Yu, Dian; Liu, Yi; Han, Shihui

    2013-01-01

    Background Emotional responding is sensitive to social context; however, little emphasis has been placed on the mechanisms by which social context effects changes in emotional responding. Objective We aimed to investigate the effects of social context on neural responses to emotional stimuli to inform on the mechanisms underpinning context-linked changes in emotional responding. Design We measured event-related potential (ERP) components known to index specific emotion processes and self-reports of explicit emotion regulation strategies and emotional arousal. Female Chinese university students observed positive, negative, and neutral photographs, whilst alone or accompanied by a culturally similar (Chinese) or dissimilar researcher (British). Results There was a reduction in the positive versus neutral differential N1 amplitude (indexing attentional capture by positive stimuli) in the dissimilar relative to alone context. In this context, there was also a corresponding increase in amplitude of a frontal late positive potential (LPP) component (indexing engagement of cognitive control resources). In the similar relative to alone context, these effects on differential N1 and frontal LPP amplitudes were less pronounced, but there was an additional decrease in the amplitude of a parietal LPP component (indexing motivational relevance) in response to positive stimuli. In response to negative stimuli, the differential N1 component was increased in the similar relative to dissimilar and alone (trend) context. Conclusion These data suggest that neural processes engaged in response to emotional stimuli are modulated by social context. Possible mechanisms for the social-context-linked changes in attentional capture by emotional stimuli include a context-directed modulation of the focus of attention, or an altered interpretation of the emotional stimuli based on additional information proportioned by the context. PMID:24693352

  18. Real-time Neural Network predictions of geomagnetic activity indices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bala, R.; Reiff, P. H.

    2009-12-01

    The Boyle potential or the Boyle Index (BI), Φ (kV)=10-4 (V/(km/s))2 + 11.7 (B/nT) sin3(θ/2), is an empirically-derived formula that can characterize the Earth's polar cap potential, which is readily derivable in real time using the solar wind data from ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer). The BI has a simplistic form that utilizes a non-magnetic "viscous" and a magnetic "merging" component to characterize the magnetospheric behavior in response to the solar wind. We have investigated its correlation with two of conventional geomagnetic activity indices in Kp and the AE index. We have shown that the logarithms of both 3-hr and 1-hr averages of the BI correlate well with the subsequent Kp: Kp = 8.93 log10(BI) - 12.55 along with 1-hr BI correlating with the subsequent log10(AE): log10(AE) = 1.78 log10(BI) - 3.6. We have developed a new set of algorithms based on Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) suitable for short term space weather forecasts with an enhanced lead-time and better accuracy in predicting Kp and AE over some leading models; the algorithms omit the time history of its targets to utilize only the solar wind data. Inputs to our ANN models benefit from the BI and its proven record as a forecasting parameter since its initiation in October, 2003. We have also performed time-sensitivity tests using cross-correlation analysis to demonstrate that our models are as efficient as those that incorporates the time history of the target indices in their inputs. Our algorithms can predict the upcoming full 3-hr Kp, purely from the solar wind data and achieve a linear correlation coefficient of 0.840, which means that it predicts the upcoming Kp value on average to within 1.3 step, which is approximately the resolution of the real-time Kp estimate. Our success in predicting Kp during a recent unexpected event (22 July ’09) is shown in the figure. Also, when predicting an equivalent "one hour Kp'', the correlation coefficient is 0.86, meaning on average a prediction

  19. Multistability and Instability of Neural Networks With Discontinuous Nonmonotonic Piecewise Linear Activation Functions.

    PubMed

    Nie, Xiaobing; Zheng, Wei Xing

    2015-11-01

    In this paper, we discuss the coexistence and dynamical behaviors of multiple equilibrium points for recurrent neural networks with a class of discontinuous nonmonotonic piecewise linear activation functions. It is proved that under some conditions, such n -neuron neural networks can have at least 5(n) equilibrium points, 3(n) of which are locally stable and the others are unstable, based on the contraction mapping theorem and the theory of strict diagonal dominance matrix. The investigation shows that the neural networks with the discontinuous activation functions introduced in this paper can have both more total equilibrium points and more locally stable equilibrium points than the ones with continuous Mexican-hat-type activation function or discontinuous two-level activation functions. An illustrative example with computer simulations is presented to verify the theoretical analysis.

  20. Fast fMRI can detect oscillatory neural activity in humans

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Laura D.; Setsompop, Kawin; Rosen, Bruce R.; Polimeni, Jonathan R.

    2016-01-01

    Oscillatory neural dynamics play an important role in the coordination of large-scale brain networks. High-level cognitive processes depend on dynamics evolving over hundreds of milliseconds, so measuring neural activity in this frequency range is important for cognitive neuroscience. However, current noninvasive neuroimaging methods are not able to precisely localize oscillatory neural activity above 0.2 Hz. Electroencephalography and magnetoencephalography have limited spatial resolution, whereas fMRI has limited temporal resolution because it measures vascular responses rather than directly recording neural activity. We hypothesized that the recent development of fast fMRI techniques, combined with the extra sensitivity afforded by ultra-high-field systems, could enable precise localization of neural oscillations. We tested whether fMRI can detect neural oscillations using human visual cortex as a model system. We detected small oscillatory fMRI signals in response to stimuli oscillating at up to 0.75 Hz within single scan sessions, and these responses were an order of magnitude larger than predicted by canonical linear models. Simultaneous EEG–fMRI and simulations based on a biophysical model of the hemodynamic response to neuronal activity suggested that the blood oxygen level-dependent response becomes faster for rapidly varying stimuli, enabling the detection of higher frequencies than expected. Accounting for phase delays across voxels further improved detection, demonstrating that identifying vascular delays will be of increasing importance with higher-frequency activity. These results challenge the assumption that the hemodynamic response is slow, and demonstrate that fMRI has the potential to map neural oscillations directly throughout the brain. PMID:27729529

  1. Altered Neural Activity Associated with Mindfulness during Nociception: A Systematic Review of Functional MRI

    PubMed Central

    Bilevicius, Elena; Kolesar, Tiffany A.; Kornelsen, Jennifer

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To assess the neural activity associated with mindfulness-based alterations of pain perception. Methods: The Cochrane Central, EMBASE, Ovid Medline, PsycINFO, Scopus, and Web of Science databases were searched on 2 February 2016. Titles, abstracts, and full-text articles were independently screened by two reviewers. Data were independently extracted from records that included topics of functional neuroimaging, pain, and mindfulness interventions. Results: The literature search produced 946 total records, of which five met the inclusion criteria. Records reported pain in terms of anticipation (n = 2), unpleasantness (n = 5), and intensity (n = 5), and how mindfulness conditions altered the neural activity during noxious stimulation accordingly. Conclusions: Although the studies were inconsistent in relating pain components to neural activity, in general, mindfulness was able to reduce pain anticipation and unpleasantness ratings, as well as alter the corresponding neural activity. The major neural underpinnings of mindfulness-based pain reduction consisted of altered activity in the anterior cingulate cortex, insula, and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. PMID:27104572

  2. Psychosocial versus physiological stress - Meta-analyses on deactivations and activations of the neural correlates of stress reactions.

    PubMed

    Kogler, Lydia; Müller, Veronika I; Chang, Amy; Eickhoff, Simon B; Fox, Peter T; Gur, Ruben C; Derntl, Birgit

    2015-10-01

    Stress is present in everyday life in various forms and situations. Two stressors frequently investigated are physiological and psychosocial stress. Besides similar subjective and hormonal responses, it has been suggested that they also share common neural substrates. The current study used activation-likelihood-estimation meta-analysis to test this assumption by integrating results of previous neuroimaging studies on stress processing. Reported results are cluster-level FWE corrected. The inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and the anterior insula (AI) were the only regions that demonstrated overlapping activation for both stressors. Analysis of physiological stress showed consistent activation of cognitive and affective components of pain processing such as the insula, striatum, or the middle cingulate cortex. Contrarily, analysis across psychosocial stress revealed consistent activation of the right superior temporal gyrus and deactivation of the striatum. Notably, parts of the striatum appeared to be functionally specified: the dorsal striatum was activated in physiological stress, whereas the ventral striatum was deactivated in psychosocial stress. Additional functional connectivity and decoding analyses further characterized this functional heterogeneity and revealed higher associations of the dorsal striatum with motor regions and of the ventral striatum with reward processing. Based on our meta-analytic approach, activation of the IFG and the AI seems to indicate a global neural stress reaction. While physiological stress activates a motoric fight-or-flight reaction, during psychosocial stress attention is shifted towards emotion regulation and goal-directed behavior, and reward processing is reduced. Our results show the significance of differentiating physiological and psychosocial stress in neural engagement. Furthermore, the assessment of deactivations in addition to activations in stress research is highly recommended. PMID:26123376

  3. Psychosocial versus physiological stress - Meta-analyses on deactivations and activations of the neural correlates of stress reactions.

    PubMed

    Kogler, Lydia; Müller, Veronika I; Chang, Amy; Eickhoff, Simon B; Fox, Peter T; Gur, Ruben C; Derntl, Birgit

    2015-10-01

    Stress is present in everyday life in various forms and situations. Two stressors frequently investigated are physiological and psychosocial stress. Besides similar subjective and hormonal responses, it has been suggested that they also share common neural substrates. The current study used activation-likelihood-estimation meta-analysis to test this assumption by integrating results of previous neuroimaging studies on stress processing. Reported results are cluster-level FWE corrected. The inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and the anterior insula (AI) were the only regions that demonstrated overlapping activation for both stressors. Analysis of physiological stress showed consistent activation of cognitive and affective components of pain processing such as the insula, striatum, or the middle cingulate cortex. Contrarily, analysis across psychosocial stress revealed consistent activation of the right superior temporal gyrus and deactivation of the striatum. Notably, parts of the striatum appeared to be functionally specified: the dorsal striatum was activated in physiological stress, whereas the ventral striatum was deactivated in psychosocial stress. Additional functional connectivity and decoding analyses further characterized this functional heterogeneity and revealed higher associations of the dorsal striatum with motor regions and of the ventral striatum with reward processing. Based on our meta-analytic approach, activation of the IFG and the AI seems to indicate a global neural stress reaction. While physiological stress activates a motoric fight-or-flight reaction, during psychosocial stress attention is shifted towards emotion regulation and goal-directed behavior, and reward processing is reduced. Our results show the significance of differentiating physiological and psychosocial stress in neural engagement. Furthermore, the assessment of deactivations in addition to activations in stress research is highly recommended.

  4. Psychosocial versus physiological stress – meta-analyses on deactivations and activations of the neural correlates of stress reactions

    PubMed Central

    Kogler, Lydia; Mueller, Veronika I.; Chang, Amy; Eickhoff, Simon B.; Fox, Peter T.; Gur, Ruben C.; Derntl, Birgit

    2015-01-01

    Stress is present in everyday life in various forms and situations. Two stressors frequently investigated are physiological and psychosocial stress. Besides similar subjective and hormonal responses, it has been suggested that they also share common neural substrates. The current study used activation-likelihood-estimation meta-analysis to test this assumption by integrating results of previous neuroimaging studies on stress processing. Reported results are cluster-level FWE corrected. The inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and the anterior insula (AI) were the only regions that demonstrated overlapping activation for both stressors. Analysis of physiological stress showed consistent activation of cognitive and affective components of pain processing such as the insula, striatum, or the middle cingulate cortex. Contrarily, analysis across psychosocial stress revealed consistent activation of the right superior temporal gyrus and deactivation of the striatum. Notably, parts of the striatum appeared to be functionally specified: the dorsal striatum was activated in physiological stress, whereas the ventral striatum was deactivated in psychosocial stress. Additional functional connectivity and decoding analyses further characterized this functional heterogeneity and revealed higher associations of the dorsal striatum with motor regions and of the ventral striatum with reward processing. Based on our meta-analytic approach, activation of the IFG and the AI seems to indicate a global neural stress reaction. While physiological stress activates a motoric fight-or-flight reaction, during psychosocial stress attention is shifted towards emotion regulation and goal-directed behavior, and reward processing is reduced. Our results show the significance of differentiating physiological and psychosocial stress in neural engagement. Furthermore, the assessment of deactivations in addition to activations in stress research is highly recommended. PMID:26123376

  5. New stability and stabilization criteria for fuzzy neural networks with various activation functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mathiyalagan, K.; Sakthivel, R.; Anthoni, S. Marshal

    2011-07-01

    In this paper, the stability analysis and control design of Takagi-Sugeno (TS) fuzzy neural networks with various activation functions and continuously distributed time delays are addressed. By implementing the delay-fractioning technique together with the linear matrix inequality (LMI) approach , a new set of sufficient conditions is derived in terms of linear matrix inequalities, which ensure the stability of the considered fuzzy neural networks. Further, based on the above-mentioned techniques, a control law with an appropriate gain control matrix is derived to achieve stabilization of the fuzzy neural networks. In addition, the results are extended to the study of the stability and stabilization results for TS fuzzy uncertain neural networks with parameter uncertainties. The stabilization criteria are obtained in terms LMIs and hence the gain control matrix can be easily determined by the MATLAB LMI control toolbox. Two numerical examples with simulation results are given to illustrate the effectiveness of the obtained result.

  6. Insular Activity during Passive Viewing of Aversive Stimuli Reflects Individual Differences in State Negative Affect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meriau, Katja; Wartenburger, Isabell; Kazzer, Philipp; Prehn, Kristin; Villringer, Arno; van der Meer, Elke; Heekeren, Hauke R.

    2009-01-01

    People differ with regard to how they perceive, experience, and express negative affect. While trait negative affect reflects a stable, sustained personality trait, state negative affect represents a stimulus limited and temporally acute emotion. So far, little is known about the neural systems mediating the relationship between negative affect…

  7. Epigenetic activation of Sox2 gene in the developing vertebrate neural plate

    PubMed Central

    Bouzas, Santiago O.; Marini, Melisa S.; Torres Zelada, Eliana; Buzzi, Ailín L.; Morales Vicente, David A.; Strobl-Mazzulla, Pablo H.

    2016-01-01

    One of the earliest manifestations of neural induction is onset of expression of the neural marker Sox2, mediated by the activation of the enhancers N1 and N2. By using loss and gain of function, we find that Sox2 expression requires the activity of JmjD2A and the Msk1 kinase, which can respectively demethylate the repressive H3K9me3 mark and phosphorylate the activating H3S10 (H3S10ph) mark. Bimolecular fluorescence complementation reveals that the adaptor protein 14-3-3, known to bind to H3S10ph, interacts with JMJD2A and may be involved in its recruitment to regulatory regions of the Sox2 gene. Chromatin immunoprecipitation reveals dynamic binding of JMJD2A to the Sox2 promoter and N-1 enhancer at the time of neural plate induction. Finally, we show a clear temporal antagonism on the occupancy of H3K9me3 and H3S10ph modifications at the promoter of the Sox2 locus before and after the neural plate induction. Taken together, our results propose a series of epigenetic events necessary for the early activation of the Sox2 gene in neural progenitor cells. PMID:27099369

  8. Feasibility of Neural Stimulation With Floating-Light-Activated Microelectrical Stimulators

    PubMed Central

    Abdo, Ammar; Sahin, Mesut

    2011-01-01

    Neural microstimulation is becoming a powerful tool for the restoration of impaired functions in the central nervous system. Microelectrode arrays with fine wire interconnects have traditionally been used in the development of these neural prosthetic devices. However, these interconnects are usually the most vulnerable part of the neuroprosthetic implant that can eventually cause the device to fail. In this paper, we investigate the feasibility of floating-light-activated microelectrical stimulators (FLAMES) for wireless neural stimulation. A computer model was developed to simulate the micro stimulators for typical requirements of neural activation in the human white and gray matters. First, the photon densities due to a circular laser beam were simulated in the neural tissue at near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths. Temperature elevation in the tissue was calculated and the laser power was retrospectively adjusted to 325 and 250 mW/cm2 in the gray and white matters, respectively, to limit ΔT to 0.5 °C. Total device area of the FLAMES increased with all parameters considered but decreased with the output voltage. We conclude that the number of series photodiodes in the device can be used as a free parameter to minimize the device size. The results suggest that floating, optically activated stimulators are feasible at submillimeter sizes for the activation of the brain cortex or the spinal cord. PMID:21552457

  9. Strategies influence neural activity for feedback learning across child and adolescent development.

    PubMed

    Peters, Sabine; Koolschijn, P Cédric M P; Crone, Eveline A; Van Duijvenvoorde, Anna C K; Raijmakers, Maartje E J

    2014-09-01

    Learning from feedback is an important aspect of executive functioning that shows profound improvements during childhood and adolescence. This is accompanied by neural changes in the feedback-learning network, which includes pre-supplementary motor area (pre- SMA)/anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), superior parietal cortex (SPC), and the basal ganglia. However, there can be considerable differences within age ranges in performance that are ascribed to differences in strategy use. This is problematic for traditional approaches of analyzing developmental data, in which age groups are assumed to be homogenous in strategy use. In this study, we used latent variable models to investigate if underlying strategy groups could be detected for a feedback-learning task and whether there were differences in neural activation patterns between strategies. In a sample of 268 participants between ages 8 to 25 years, we observed four underlying strategy groups, which were cut across age groups and varied in the optimality of executive functioning. These strategy groups also differed in neural activity during learning; especially the most optimal performing group showed more activity in DLPFC, SPC and pre-SMA/ACC compared to the other groups. However, age differences remained an important contributor to neural activation, even when correcting for strategy. These findings contribute to the debate of age versus performance predictors of neural development, and highlight the importance of studying individual differences in strategy use when studying development.

  10. Corrugator activity confirms immediate negative affect in surprise.

    PubMed

    Topolinski, Sascha; Strack, Fritz

    2015-01-01

    The emotion of surprise entails a complex of immediate responses, such as cognitive interruption, attention allocation to, and more systematic processing of the surprising stimulus. All these processes serve the ultimate function to increase processing depth and thus cognitively master the surprising stimulus. The present account introduces phasic negative affect as the underlying mechanism responsible for this switch in operating mode. Surprising stimuli are schema-discrepant and thus entail cognitive disfluency, which elicits immediate negative affect. This affect in turn works like a phasic cognitive tuning switching the current processing mode from more automatic and heuristic to more systematic and reflective processing. Directly testing the initial elicitation of negative affect by surprising events, the present experiment presented high and low surprising neutral trivia statements to N = 28 participants while assessing their spontaneous facial expressions via facial electromyography. High compared to low surprising trivia elicited higher corrugator activity, indicative of negative affect and mental effort, while leaving zygomaticus (positive affect) and frontalis (cultural surprise expression) activity unaffected. Future research shall investigate the mediating role of negative affect in eliciting surprise-related outcomes.

  11. Corrugator activity confirms immediate negative affect in surprise

    PubMed Central

    Topolinski, Sascha; Strack, Fritz

    2015-01-01

    The emotion of surprise entails a complex of immediate responses, such as cognitive interruption, attention allocation to, and more systematic processing of the surprising stimulus. All these processes serve the ultimate function to increase processing depth and thus cognitively master the surprising stimulus. The present account introduces phasic negative affect as the underlying mechanism responsible for this switch in operating mode. Surprising stimuli are schema-discrepant and thus entail cognitive disfluency, which elicits immediate negative affect. This affect in turn works like a phasic cognitive tuning switching the current processing mode from more automatic and heuristic to more systematic and reflective processing. Directly testing the initial elicitation of negative affect by surprising events, the present experiment presented high and low surprising neutral trivia statements to N = 28 participants while assessing their spontaneous facial expressions via facial electromyography. High compared to low surprising trivia elicited higher corrugator activity, indicative of negative affect and mental effort, while leaving zygomaticus (positive affect) and frontalis (cultural surprise expression) activity unaffected. Future research shall investigate the mediating role of negative affect in eliciting surprise-related outcomes. PMID:25762956

  12. Predicting hand orientation in reach-to-grasp tasks using neural activities from primary motor cortex.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Peng; Ma, Xuan; Huang, Hailong; He, Jiping

    2014-01-01

    Hand orientation is an important control parameter during reach-to-grasp task. In this paper, we presented a study for predicting hand orientation of non-human primate by decoding neural activities from primary motor cortex (M1). A non-human primate subject was guided to do reaching and grasping tasks meanwhile neural activities were acquired by chronically implanted microelectrode arrays. A Support Vector Machines (SVMs) classifier has been trained for predicting three different hand orientations using these M1 neural activities. Different number of neurons were selected and analyzed; the classifying accuracy was 94.1% with 2 neurons and was 100% with 8 neurons. Data from highly event related neuron units contribute a lot to the accuracy of hand orientation prediction. These results indicate that three different hand orientations can be predicted accurately and effectively before the actual movements occurring with a small number of related neurons in M1.

  13. New exponential synchronization criteria for time-varying delayed neural networks with discontinuous activations.

    PubMed

    Cai, Zuowei; Huang, Lihong; Zhang, Lingling

    2015-05-01

    This paper investigates the problem of exponential synchronization of time-varying delayed neural networks with discontinuous neuron activations. Under the extended Filippov differential inclusion framework, by designing discontinuous state-feedback controller and using some analytic techniques, new testable algebraic criteria are obtained to realize two different kinds of global exponential synchronization of the drive-response system. Moreover, we give the estimated rate of exponential synchronization which depends on the delays and system parameters. The obtained results extend some previous works on synchronization of delayed neural networks not only with continuous activations but also with discontinuous activations. Finally, numerical examples are provided to show the correctness of our analysis via computer simulations. Our method and theoretical results have a leading significance in the design of synchronized neural network circuits involving discontinuous factors and time-varying delays.

  14. Neural Activation during Anticipation of Near Pain-Threshold Stimulation among the Pain-Fearful

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zhou; Jackson, Todd; Huang, Chengzhi

    2016-01-01

    Fear of pain (FOP) can increase risk for chronic pain and disability but little is known about corresponding neural responses in anticipation of potential pain. In this study, more (10 women, 6 men) and less (7 women, 6 men) pain-fearful groups underwent whole-brain functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during anticipation of near pain-threshold stimulation. Groups did not differ in the proportion of stimuli judged to be painful but pain-fearful participants reported significantly more state fear prior to stimulus exposure. Within the entire sample, stronger activation was found in several pain perception regions (e.g., bilateral insula, midcingulate cortex (MCC), thalamus, superior frontal gyrus) and visual areas linked to decoding stimulus valences (inferior orbital cortex) during anticipation of “painful” stimuli. Between groups and correlation analyses indicated pain-fearful participants experienced comparatively more activity in regions implicated in evaluating potential threats and processing negative emotions during anticipation (i.e., MCC, mid occipital cortex, superior temporal pole), though group differences were not apparent in most so-called “pain matrix” regions. In sum, trait- and task-based FOP is associated with enhanced responsiveness in regions involved in threat processing and negative affect during anticipation of potentially painful stimulation. PMID:27489536

  15. Neural Activation during Anticipation of Near Pain-Threshold Stimulation among the Pain-Fearful.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhou; Jackson, Todd; Huang, Chengzhi

    2016-01-01

    Fear of pain (FOP) can increase risk for chronic pain and disability but little is known about corresponding neural responses in anticipation of potential pain. In this study, more (10 women, 6 men) and less (7 women, 6 men) pain-fearful groups underwent whole-brain functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during anticipation of near pain-threshold stimulation. Groups did not differ in the proportion of stimuli judged to be painful but pain-fearful participants reported significantly more state fear prior to stimulus exposure. Within the entire sample, stronger activation was found in several pain perception regions (e.g., bilateral insula, midcingulate cortex (MCC), thalamus, superior frontal gyrus) and visual areas linked to decoding stimulus valences (inferior orbital cortex) during anticipation of "painful" stimuli. Between groups and correlation analyses indicated pain-fearful participants experienced comparatively more activity in regions implicated in evaluating potential threats and processing negative emotions during anticipation (i.e., MCC, mid occipital cortex, superior temporal pole), though group differences were not apparent in most so-called "pain matrix" regions. In sum, trait- and task-based FOP is associated with enhanced responsiveness in regions involved in threat processing and negative affect during anticipation of potentially painful stimulation. PMID:27489536

  16. Increased Neural Activation during Picture Encoding and Retrieval in 60-Year-Olds Compared to 20-Year-Olds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burgmans, S.; van Boxtel, M. P. J.; Vuurman, E. F. P. M.; Evers, E. A. T.; Jolles, J.

    2010-01-01

    Brain aging has been associated with both reduced and increased neural activity during task execution. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether increased neural activation during memory encoding and retrieval is already present at the age of 60 as well as to obtain more insight into the mechanism behind increased activity.…

  17. Neural portraits of perception: reconstructing face images from evoked brain activity.

    PubMed

    Cowen, Alan S; Chun, Marvin M; Kuhl, Brice A

    2014-07-01

    Recent neuroimaging advances have allowed visual experience to be reconstructed from patterns of brain activity. While neural reconstructions have ranged in complexity, they have relied almost exclusively on retinotopic mappings between visual input and activity in early visual cortex. However, subjective perceptual information is tied more closely to higher-level cortical regions that have not yet been used as the primary basis for neural reconstructions. Furthermore, no reconstruction studies to date have reported reconstructions of face images, which activate a highly distributed cortical network. Thus, we investigated (a) whether individual face images could be accurately reconstructed from distributed patterns of neural activity, and (b) whether this could be achieved even when excluding activity within occipital cortex. Our approach involved four steps. (1) Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to identify components that efficiently represented a set of training faces. (2) The identified components were then mapped, using a machine learning algorithm, to fMRI activity collected during viewing of the training faces. (3) Based on activity elicited by a new set of test faces, the algorithm predicted associated component scores. (4) Finally, these scores were transformed into reconstructed images. Using both objective and subjective validation measures, we show that our methods yield strikingly accurate neural reconstructions of faces even when excluding occipital cortex. This methodology not only represents a novel and promising approach for investigating face perception, but also suggests avenues for reconstructing 'offline' visual experiences-including dreams, memories, and imagination-which are chiefly represented in higher-level cortical areas.

  18. Initial evaluation of an active/passive structural neural system for health monitoring of composite materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirikera, G. R.; Lee, J. W.; Schulz, M. J.; Ghoshal, A.; Sundaresan, M. J.; Allemang, R. J.; Shanov, V. N.; Westheider, H.

    2006-10-01

    Structural health monitoring is an underlying technology that can help to ensure safe operation and provide cost effective maintenance of advanced composite structures. While several general methods of health monitoring have evolved in recent years, there is still the goal of reducing the overall cost of applying health monitoring to large structures. Data acquisition hardware typically consumes most of the investment in a structural monitoring system. On a conventional system based on acoustic emission monitoring, a separate high sampling rate data acquisition channel is needed for each sensor to convert analog signals to digital signals to locate damage. Other methods of damage detection are likewise complicated, and require many sensors and actuators, auxiliary signal processing, and data storage instrumentation. This paper proposes a structural neural system that uses firing of sensor neurons to reduce the number of data acquisition channels needed for damage detection. The neural system can perform passive acoustic emission sensing or active wave propagation monitoring. A prototype structural neural system with four sensor inputs was built and tested, and experimental results are presented in the paper. One signal output from the structural neural system is used to predict the location of damage. A second signal provides the time domain response of the sensors. Therefore, passive and active health monitoring can be performed using two channels of data acquisition. The structural neural system significantly reduces the data acquisition hardware required for health monitoring, and combines some of the advantages that exist individually for passive and active health monitoring.

  19. Information content of neural networks with self-control and variable activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bollé, D.; Amari, S. I.; Dominguez Carreta, D. R. C.; Massolo, G.

    2001-02-01

    A self-control mechanism for the dynamics of neural networks with variable activity is discussed using a recursive scheme for the time evolution of the local field. It is based upon the introduction of a self-adapting time-dependent threshold as a function of both the neural and pattern activity in the network. This mechanism leads to an improvement of the information content of the network as well as an increase of the storage capacity and the basins of attraction. Different architectures are considered and the results are compared with numerical simulations.

  20. Maternal Occupational Exposure to Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and Risk of Neural Tube Defect-Affected Pregnancies

    PubMed Central

    Langlois, Peter H.; Hoyt, Adrienne T.; Lupo, Philip J.; Lawson, Christina C.; Waters, Martha A.; Desrosiers, Tania A.; Shaw, Gary M.; Romitti, Paul A.; Lammer, Edward J.

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND This study evaluated whether there is an association between maternal occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and neural tube defects (NTDs) in offspring. This is the first such study of which the authors are aware. METHODS Data were analyzed from 1997 to 2002 deliveries in the National Birth Defects Prevention Study, a large population-based case-control study in the United States. Maternal interviews yielded information on jobs held in the month before through 3 months after conception. Three industrial hygienists blinded to case or control status assessed occupational exposure to PAHs. Crude and adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using unconditional logistic regression. RESULTS Of the 520 mothers of children with NTDs, 5.0% were classified as exposed to occupational PAHs, as were 3.5% of the 2989 mothers of controls. The crude OR for PAH exposure was 1.43 (95% CI, 0.92–2.22) for any NTD and 1.71 (95% CI, 1.03–2.83) for spina bifida. Adjusted ORs were smaller in magnitude and not significant. Among women who were normal weight or underweight, the crude OR for spina bifida was 3.13 (95% CI, 1.63–6.03) and adjusted OR was 2.59 (95% CI, 1.32–5.07). Based on estimated cumulative exposure, a statistically significant dose-response trend was observed for spina bifida; however, it was attenuated and no longer significant after adjustment. CONCLUSION Maternal occupational exposure to PAHs may be associated with increased risk of spina bifida in offspring among women who are normal weight or underweight. Other comparisons between PAHs and NTDs were consistent with no association. PMID:22807044

  1. Mapping neural circuits with activity-dependent nuclear import of a transcription factor.

    PubMed

    Masuyama, Kaoru; Zhang, Yi; Rao, Yi; Wang, Jing W

    2012-03-01

    Abstract: Nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) is a calcium-responsive transcription factor. We describe here an NFAT-based neural tracing method-CaLexA (calcium-dependent nuclear import of LexA)-for labeling active neurons in behaving animals. In this system, sustained neural activity induces nuclear import of the chimeric transcription factor LexA-VP16-NFAT, which in turn drives green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter expression only in active neurons. We tested this system in Drosophila and found that volatile sex pheromones excite specific neurons in the olfactory circuit. Furthermore, complex courtship behavior associated with multi-modal sensory inputs activated neurons in the ventral nerve cord. This method harnessing the mechanism of activity-dependent nuclear import of a transcription factor can be used to identify active neurons in specific neuronal population in behaving animals. PMID:22236090

  2. 12-Deoxyphorbols Promote Adult Neurogenesis by Inducing Neural Progenitor Cell Proliferation via PKC Activation

    PubMed Central

    Geribaldi-Doldán, Noelia; Flores-Giubi, Eugenia; Murillo-Carretero, Maribel; García-Bernal, Francisco; Carrasco, Manuel; Macías-Sánchez, Antonio J.; Domínguez-Riscart, Jesús; Verástegui, Cristina; Hernández-Galán, Rosario

    2016-01-01

    Background: Neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders frequently occur after brain insults associated with neuronal loss. Strategies aimed to facilitate neuronal renewal by promoting neurogenesis constitute a promising therapeutic option to treat neuronal death-associated disorders. In the adult brain, generation of new neurons occurs physiologically throughout the entire life controlled by extracellular molecules coupled to intracellular signaling cascades. Proteins participating in these cascades within neurogenic regions constitute potential pharmacological targets to promote neuronal regeneration of injured areas of the central nervous system. Methodology: We have performed in vitro and in vivo approaches to determine neural progenitor cell proliferation to understand whether activation of kinases of the protein kinase C family facilitates neurogenesis in the adult brain. Results: We have demonstrated that protein kinase C activation by phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate induces neural progenitor cell proliferation in vitro. We also show that the nontumorogenic protein kinase C activator prostratin exerts a proliferative effect on neural progenitor cells in vitro. This effect can be reverted by addition of the protein kinase C inhibitor G06850, demonstrating that the effect of prostratin is mediated by protein kinase C activation. Additionally, we show that prostratin treatment in vivo induces proliferation of neural progenitor cells within the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus and the subventricular zone. Finally, we describe a library of diterpenes with a 12-deoxyphorbol structure similar to that of prostratin that induces a stronger effect than prostratin on neural progenitor cell proliferation both in vitro and in vivo. Conclusions: This work suggests that protein kinase C activation is a promising strategy to expand the endogenous neural progenitor cell population to promote neurogenesis and highlights the potential of 12-deoxyphorbols as pharmaceutical

  3. Temporal coherency between receptor expression, neural activity and AP-1-dependent transcription regulates Drosophila motoneuron dendrite development

    PubMed Central

    Vonhoff, Fernando; Kuehn, Claudia; Blumenstock, Sonja; Sanyal, Subhabrata; Duch, Carsten

    2013-01-01

    Neural activity has profound effects on the development of dendritic structure. Mechanisms that link neural activity to nuclear gene expression include activity-regulated factors, such as CREB, Crest or Mef2, as well as activity-regulated immediate-early genes, such as fos and jun. This study investigates the role of the transcriptional regulator AP-1, a Fos-Jun heterodimer, in activity-dependent dendritic structure development. We combine genetic manipulation, imaging and quantitative dendritic architecture analysis in a Drosophila single neuron model, the individually identified motoneuron MN5. First, Dα7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and AP-1 are required for normal MN5 dendritic growth. Second, AP-1 functions downstream of activity during MN5 dendritic growth. Third, using a newly engineered AP-1 reporter we demonstrate that AP-1 transcriptional activity is downstream of Dα7 nAChRs and Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) signaling. Fourth, AP-1 can have opposite effects on dendritic development, depending on the timing of activation. Enhancing excitability or AP-1 activity after MN5 cholinergic synapses and primary dendrites have formed causes dendritic branching, whereas premature AP-1 expression or induced activity prior to excitatory synapse formation disrupts dendritic growth. Finally, AP-1 transcriptional activity and dendritic growth are affected by MN5 firing only during development but not in the adult. Our results highlight the importance of timing in the growth and plasticity of neuronal dendrites by defining a developmental period of activity-dependent AP-1 induction that is temporally locked to cholinergic synapse formation and dendritic refinement, thus significantly refining prior models derived from chronic expression studies. PMID:23293292

  4. 16 CFR 801.3 - Activities in or affecting commerce.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... INTERPRETATIONS UNDER THE HART-SCOTT-RODINO ANTITRUST IMPROVEMENTS ACT OF 1976 COVERAGE RULES § 801.3 Activities... affecting commerce. Examples: 1. A foreign subsidiary of a U.S. corporation seeks to acquire a foreign business. The acquiring person includes the U.S. parent corporation. If the U.S. corporation, or...

  5. 16 CFR 801.3 - Activities in or affecting commerce.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... INTERPRETATIONS UNDER THE HART-SCOTT-RODINO ANTITRUST IMPROVEMENTS ACT OF 1976 COVERAGE RULES § 801.3 Activities... affecting commerce. Examples: 1. A foreign subsidiary of a U.S. corporation seeks to acquire a foreign business. The acquiring person includes the U.S. parent corporation. If the U.S. corporation, or...

  6. Monitoring Affect States during Effortful Problem Solving Activities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    D'Mello, Sidney K.; Lehman, Blair; Person, Natalie

    2010-01-01

    We explored the affective states that students experienced during effortful problem solving activities. We conducted a study where 41 students solved difficult analytical reasoning problems from the Law School Admission Test. Students viewed videos of their faces and screen captures and judged their emotions from a set of 14 states (basic…

  7. A mutation in the tuft mouse disrupts TET1 activity and alters the expression of genes that are crucial for neural tube closure.

    PubMed

    Fong, Keith S K; Hufnagel, Robert B; Khadka, Vedbar S; Corley, Michael J; Maunakea, Alika K; Fogelgren, Ben; Ahmed, Zubair M; Lozanoff, Scott

    2016-05-01

    Genetic variations affecting neural tube closure along the head result in malformations of the face and brain. Neural tube defects (NTDs) are among the most common birth defects in humans. We previously reported a mouse mutant called tuft that arose spontaneously in our wild-type 3H1 colony. Adult tuft mice present midline craniofacial malformations with or without an anterior cephalocele. In addition, affected embryos presented neural tube closure defects resulting in insufficient closure of the anterior neuropore or exencephaly. Here, through whole-genome sequencing, we identified a nonsense mutation in the Tet1 gene, which encodes a methylcytosine dioxygenase (TET1), co-segregating with the tuft phenotype. This mutation resulted in premature termination that disrupts the catalytic domain that is involved in the demethylation of cytosine. We detected a significant loss of TET enzyme activity in the heads of tuft embryos that were homozygous for the mutation and had NTDs. RNA-Seq transcriptome analysis indicated that multiple gene pathways associated with neural tube closure were dysregulated in tuft embryo heads. Among them, the expressions of Cecr2, Epha7 and Grhl2 were significantly reduced in some embryos presenting neural tube closure defects, whereas one or more components of the non-canonical WNT signaling pathway mediating planar cell polarity and convergent extension were affected in others. We further show that the recombinant mutant TET1 protein was capable of entering the nucleus and affected the expression of endogenous Grhl2 in IMCD-3 (inner medullary collecting duct) cells. These results indicate that TET1 is an epigenetic determinant for regulating genes that are crucial to closure of the anterior neural tube and its mutation has implications to craniofacial development, as presented by the tuft mouse. PMID:26989192

  8. A mutation in the tuft mouse disrupts TET1 activity and alters the expression of genes that are crucial for neural tube closure

    PubMed Central

    Khadka, Vedbar S.; Corley, Michael J.; Maunakea, Alika K.; Fogelgren, Ben; Ahmed, Zubair M.; Lozanoff, Scott

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Genetic variations affecting neural tube closure along the head result in malformations of the face and brain. Neural tube defects (NTDs) are among the most common birth defects in humans. We previously reported a mouse mutant called tuft that arose spontaneously in our wild-type 3H1 colony. Adult tuft mice present midline craniofacial malformations with or without an anterior cephalocele. In addition, affected embryos presented neural tube closure defects resulting in insufficient closure of the anterior neuropore or exencephaly. Here, through whole-genome sequencing, we identified a nonsense mutation in the Tet1 gene, which encodes a methylcytosine dioxygenase (TET1), co-segregating with the tuft phenotype. This mutation resulted in premature termination that disrupts the catalytic domain that is involved in the demethylation of cytosine. We detected a significant loss of TET enzyme activity in the heads of tuft embryos that were homozygous for the mutation and had NTDs. RNA-Seq transcriptome analysis indicated that multiple gene pathways associated with neural tube closure were dysregulated in tuft embryo heads. Among them, the expressions of Cecr2, Epha7 and Grhl2 were significantly reduced in some embryos presenting neural tube closure defects, whereas one or more components of the non-canonical WNT signaling pathway mediating planar cell polarity and convergent extension were affected in others. We further show that the recombinant mutant TET1 protein was capable of entering the nucleus and affected the expression of endogenous Grhl2 in IMCD-3 (inner medullary collecting duct) cells. These results indicate that TET1 is an epigenetic determinant for regulating genes that are crucial to closure of the anterior neural tube and its mutation has implications to craniofacial development, as presented by the tuft mouse. PMID:26989192

  9. Nonsmooth finite-time stabilization of neural networks with discontinuous activations.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaoyang; Park, Ju H; Jiang, Nan; Cao, Jinde

    2014-04-01

    This paper is concerned with the finite-time stabilization for a class of neural networks (NNs) with discontinuous activations. The purpose of the addressed problem is to design a discontinuous controller to stabilize the states of such neural networks in finite time. Unlike the previous works, such stabilization objective will be realized for neural networks when the activations and controllers are both discontinuous. Based on the famous finite-time stability theorem of nonlinear systems and nonsmooth analysis in mathematics, sufficient conditions are established to ensure the finite-time stability of the dynamics of NNs. Then, the upper bound of the settling time for stabilization can be estimated in two forms due to two different methods of proof. Finally, two numerical examples are given to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed design method.

  10. Application of neural networks with orthogonal activation functions in control of dynamical systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nikolić, Saša S.; Antić, Dragan S.; Milojković, Marko T.; Milovanović, Miroslav B.; Perić, Staniša Lj.; Mitić, Darko B.

    2016-04-01

    In this article, we present a new method for the synthesis of almost and quasi-orthogonal polynomials of arbitrary order. Filters designed on the bases of these functions are generators of generalised quasi-orthogonal signals for which we derived and presented necessary mathematical background. Based on theoretical results, we designed and practically implemented generalised first-order (k = 1) quasi-orthogonal filter and proved its quasi-orthogonality via performed experiments. Designed filters can be applied in many scientific areas. In this article, generated functions were successfully implemented in Nonlinear Auto Regressive eXogenous (NARX) neural network as activation functions. One practical application of the designed orthogonal neural network is demonstrated through the example of control of the complex technical non-linear system - laboratory magnetic levitation system. Obtained results were compared with neural networks with standard activation functions and orthogonal functions of trigonometric shape. The proposed network demonstrated superiority over existing solutions in the sense of system performances.

  11. Imaging Imageability: Behavioral Effects and Neural Correlates of Its Interaction with Affect and Context.

    PubMed

    Westbury, Chris F; Cribben, Ivor; Cummine, Jacqueline

    2016-01-01

    The construct of imageability refers to the extent to which a word evokes a tangible sensation. Previous research (Westbury et al., 2013) suggests that the behavioral effects attributed to a word's imageability can be largely or wholly explained by two objective constructs, contextual density and estimated affect. Here, we extend these previous findings in two ways. First, we show that closely matched stimuli on the three measures of contextual density, estimated affect, and human-judged imageability show a three-way interaction in explaining variance in LD RTs, but that imagebility accounts for no additional variance after contextual density and estimated affect are entered first. Secondly, we demonstrate that the loci and functional connectivity (via graphical models) of the brain regions implicated in processing the three variables during that task are largely over-lapping and similar. These two lines of evidence support the conclusion that the effect usually attributed to human-judged imageability is largely or entirely due to the effects of other correlated measures that are directly computable. PMID:27471455

  12. Imaging Imageability: Behavioral Effects and Neural Correlates of Its Interaction with Affect and Context

    PubMed Central

    Westbury, Chris F.; Cribben, Ivor; Cummine, Jacqueline

    2016-01-01

    The construct of imageability refers to the extent to which a word evokes a tangible sensation. Previous research (Westbury et al., 2013) suggests that the behavioral effects attributed to a word's imageability can be largely or wholly explained by two objective constructs, contextual density and estimated affect. Here, we extend these previous findings in two ways. First, we show that closely matched stimuli on the three measures of contextual density, estimated affect, and human-judged imageability show a three-way interaction in explaining variance in LD RTs, but that imagebility accounts for no additional variance after contextual density and estimated affect are entered first. Secondly, we demonstrate that the loci and functional connectivity (via graphical models) of the brain regions implicated in processing the three variables during that task are largely over-lapping and similar. These two lines of evidence support the conclusion that the effect usually attributed to human-judged imageability is largely or entirely due to the effects of other correlated measures that are directly computable. PMID:27471455

  13. Multichannel 5 × 5-Site 3-Dimensional Si Microprobe Electrode Array for Neural Activity Recording System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawano, Takeshi; Takao, Hidekuni; Sawada, Kazuaki; Ishida, Makoto

    2003-04-01

    Multichannel 5 × 5-site Si microprobe electrode array has been developed for neural activity recording. Si microprobes were fabricated successfully at predetermined sites on a chip using Au dots and Si2H6 gas source molecular beam epitaxy (GS-MBE), a method based on vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) growth. Selective VLS Si growth allowed the design of three-dimensional (3D) microprobes with 40 μm spacing in a 5 × 5 array. The diameter and the length of the Si probe can be widely changed by changing the Au dot size and the Si growth time, respectively. In addition, the circular-cone-shaped Si probe has a shape suitable for penetration into neural tissues, and can be realized by increasing growth pressure. The mechanical strength of the Si probe was evaluated with observation of its bending and penetration into a gelatin membrane, which indicated that the Si probes are strong enough to withstand the application. Signal recording with the same amplitude as neural activity was also performed using the fabricated Si probe array chip. These results confirm that high-density neural signals from neural tissues can be obtained with the multichannel 3D VLS Si microprobe array chip.

  14. Neural speech recognition: continuous phoneme decoding using spatiotemporal representations of human cortical activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moses, David A.; Mesgarani, Nima; Leonard, Matthew K.; Chang, Edward F.

    2016-10-01

    Objective. The superior temporal gyrus (STG) and neighboring brain regions play a key role in human language processing. Previous studies have attempted to reconstruct speech information from brain activity in the STG, but few of them incorporate the probabilistic framework and engineering methodology used in modern speech recognition systems. In this work, we describe the initial efforts toward the design of a neural speech recognition (NSR) system that performs continuous phoneme recognition on English stimuli with arbitrary vocabulary sizes using the high gamma band power of local field potentials in the STG and neighboring cortical areas obtained via electrocorticography. Approach. The system implements a Viterbi decoder that incorporates phoneme likelihood estimates from a linear discriminant analysis model and transition probabilities from an n-gram phonemic language model. Grid searches were used in an attempt to determine optimal parameterizations of the feature vectors and Viterbi decoder. Main results. The performance of the system was significantly improved by using spatiotemporal representations of the neural activity (as opposed to purely spatial representations) and by including language modeling and Viterbi decoding in the NSR system. Significance. These results emphasize the importance of modeling the temporal dynamics of neural responses when analyzing their variations with respect to varying stimuli and demonstrate that speech recognition techniques can be successfully leveraged when decoding speech from neural signals. Guided by the results detailed in this work, further development of the NSR system could have applications in the fields of automatic speech recognition and neural prosthetics.

  15. Glycosphingolipid synthesis inhibitor represses cytokine-induced activation of the Ras-MAPK pathway in embryonic neural precursor cells.

    PubMed

    Yanagisawa, Makoto; Nakamura, Kazuo; Taga, Tetsuya

    2005-09-01

    Neuronal and glial cells in the central nervous system are generated from common neural precursor cells during development. To evaluate the functions of glycosphingolipids (GSLs) in neural precursor cells, neuroepithelial cells (NECs) were prepared from mouse embryos (E14.5), and the effects of an inhibitor of glucosylceramide synthesis, D-threo-1-phenyl-2-decanoylamino-3-morpholino-1-propanol (PDMP), on NECs was investigated. In PDMP-treated NECs, the expression of GD3, a major ganglioside of NECs, disappeared. We found that basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF)-induced proliferation and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation were repressed in PDMP-treated NECs. Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF)-induced ERK activation was also abolished in PDMP-treated NECs, suggesting that PDMP specifically represses the Ras-MAPK pathway. bFGF-induced activation of the Ras-MAPK pathway in NECs is dependent on GSL-enriched microdomains, lipid rafts. The organization of lipid rafts and the distribution of Ras and Grb2-SOS in the microdomains were not affected. However, Ras activation was repressed in PDMP-treated NECs. In PDMP-treated NECs, some neuronal genes were up-regulated and glial genes were down-regulated. These results suggest that GSLs might be involved in the proliferation, survival, signal transduction and differentiation of NECs.

  16. Optical imaging of neural activity: from neuron to brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Qingming; Zeng, Shaoqun; Gong, Hui

    2003-12-01

    This paper introduces the optical imaging approaches at three levels in cognitive neuroscience in the Key Laboratory of Biomedical Photonics of Ministry of Education of China. In molecular and cellular level, the advances in microscopy, molecular optical marker, and sample preparations have made possible studies that characterize the form and function of neurons in unprecedented detail. The development of two-photon excitation has enabled fluorescent imaging of small structures in the midst of highly scattering media with little photodamage. The combination of MPE and multi-electrode array provides a powerful approach for neuronal networks imaging. Intrinsic signal imaging (ISI) and laser speckle imaging (LSI) are effective approaches for intrinsic signal imaging at a given cortical site. No alternative imaging technique for the visualization of functional organization in the living brain provides a comparable spatial resolution. It is this level of resolution that reveals where processing is performed - a necessary step for the understanding of the neural code at the population level. Completely noninvasive optical imaging through the intact human skull, such as functional near infrared imaging may provide an imaging tool offering both the spatial and the temporal resolutions required to expand our knowledge of the principles underlying the remarkable performance of the human cerebral cortex.

  17. Maternal mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy affect infants' neural responses to sounds.

    PubMed

    van den Heuvel, Marion I; Donkers, Franc C L; Winkler, István; Otte, Renée A; Van den Bergh, Bea R H

    2015-03-01

    Maternal anxiety during pregnancy has been consistently shown to negatively affect offspring neurodevelopmental outcomes. However, little is known about the impact of positive maternal traits/states during pregnancy on the offspring. The present study was aimed at investigating the effects of the mother's mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy on the infant's neurocognitive functioning at 9 months of age. Mothers reported mindfulness using the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory and anxiety using the Symptom Checklist (SCL-90) at ± 20.7 weeks of gestation. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were measured from 79 infants in an auditory oddball paradigm designed to measure auditory attention-a key aspect of early neurocognitive functioning. For the ERP responses elicited by standard sounds, higher maternal mindfulness was associated with lower N250 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η(2) = 0.097), whereas higher maternal anxiety was associated with higher N250 amplitudes (P < 0.05, η(2) = 0.057). Maternal mindfulness was also positively associated with the P150 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η(2) = 0.130). These results suggest that infants prenatally exposed to higher levels of maternal mindfulness devote fewer attentional resources to frequently occurring irrelevant sounds. The results show that positive traits and experiences of the mother during pregnancy may also affect the unborn child. Emphasizing the beneficial effects of a positive psychological state during pregnancy may promote healthy behavior in pregnant women.

  18. Maternal mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy affect infants’ neural responses to sounds

    PubMed Central

    van den Heuvel, Marion I.; Donkers, Franc C. L.; Winkler, István; Otte, Renée A.

    2015-01-01

    Maternal anxiety during pregnancy has been consistently shown to negatively affect offspring neurodevelopmental outcomes. However, little is known about the impact of positive maternal traits/states during pregnancy on the offspring. The present study was aimed at investigating the effects of the mother’s mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy on the infant’s neurocognitive functioning at 9 months of age. Mothers reported mindfulness using the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory and anxiety using the Symptom Checklist (SCL-90) at ±20.7 weeks of gestation. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were measured from 79 infants in an auditory oddball paradigm designed to measure auditory attention—a key aspect of early neurocognitive functioning. For the ERP responses elicited by standard sounds, higher maternal mindfulness was associated with lower N250 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η2 = 0.097), whereas higher maternal anxiety was associated with higher N250 amplitudes (P < 0.05, η2 = 0.057). Maternal mindfulness was also positively associated with the P150 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η2 = 0.130). These results suggest that infants prenatally exposed to higher levels of maternal mindfulness devote fewer attentional resources to frequently occurring irrelevant sounds. The results show that positive traits and experiences of the mother during pregnancy may also affect the unborn child. Emphasizing the beneficial effects of a positive psychological state during pregnancy may promote healthy behavior in pregnant women. PMID:24925904

  19. Maternal mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy affect infants' neural responses to sounds.

    PubMed

    van den Heuvel, Marion I; Donkers, Franc C L; Winkler, István; Otte, Renée A; Van den Bergh, Bea R H

    2015-03-01

    Maternal anxiety during pregnancy has been consistently shown to negatively affect offspring neurodevelopmental outcomes. However, little is known about the impact of positive maternal traits/states during pregnancy on the offspring. The present study was aimed at investigating the effects of the mother's mindfulness and anxiety during pregnancy on the infant's neurocognitive functioning at 9 months of age. Mothers reported mindfulness using the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory and anxiety using the Symptom Checklist (SCL-90) at ± 20.7 weeks of gestation. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were measured from 79 infants in an auditory oddball paradigm designed to measure auditory attention-a key aspect of early neurocognitive functioning. For the ERP responses elicited by standard sounds, higher maternal mindfulness was associated with lower N250 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η(2) = 0.097), whereas higher maternal anxiety was associated with higher N250 amplitudes (P < 0.05, η(2) = 0.057). Maternal mindfulness was also positively associated with the P150 amplitudes (P < 0.01, η(2) = 0.130). These results suggest that infants prenatally exposed to higher levels of maternal mindfulness devote fewer attentional resources to frequently occurring irrelevant sounds. The results show that positive traits and experiences of the mother during pregnancy may also affect the unborn child. Emphasizing the beneficial effects of a positive psychological state during pregnancy may promote healthy behavior in pregnant women. PMID:24925904

  20. Metabonomics classifies pathways affected by bioactive compounds. Artificial neural network classification of NMR spectra of plant extracts.

    PubMed

    Ott, Karl-Heinz; Araníbar, Nelly; Singh, Bijay; Stockton, Gerald W

    2003-03-01

    The biochemical mode-of-action (MOA) for herbicides and other bioactive compounds can be rapidly and simultaneously classified by automated pattern recognition of the metabonome that is embodied in the 1H NMR spectrum of a crude plant extract. The ca. 300 herbicides that are used in agriculture today affect less than 30 different biochemical pathways. In this report, 19 of the most interesting MOAs were automatically classified. Corn (Zea mays) plants were treated with various herbicides such as imazethapyr, glyphosate, sethoxydim, and diuron, which represent various biochemical modes-of-action such as inhibition of specific enzymes (acetohydroxy acid synthase [AHAS], protoporphyrin IX oxidase [PROTOX], 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase [EPSPS], acetyl CoA carboxylase [ACC-ase], etc.), or protein complexes (photosystems I and II), or major biological process such as oxidative phosphorylation, auxin transport, microtubule growth, and mitosis. Crude isolates from the treated plants were subjected to 1H NMR spectroscopy, and the spectra were classified by artificial neural network analysis to discriminate the herbicide modes-of-action. We demonstrate the use and refinement of the method, and present cross-validated assignments for the metabolite NMR profiles of over 400 plant isolates. The MOA screen also recognizes when a new mode-of-action is present, which is considered extremely important for the herbicide discovery process, and can be used to study deviations in the metabolism of compounds from a chemical synthesis program. The combination of NMR metabolite profiling and neural network classification is expected to be similarly relevant to other metabonomic profiling applications, such as in drug discovery. PMID:12590124

  1. Behavioral and neural correlates of cognitive-affective function during late pregnancy: an Event-Related Potentials study.

    PubMed

    Raz, Sivan

    2014-07-01

    The present study was aimed at identifying potential behavioral and neural correlates of cognitive and emotional processing during pregnancy using scalp-recorded Event-Related Potentials (ERPs). We used a 4-stimulus visual oddball task, combining emotional and non-emotional stimuli. Responses to target and non-target stimuli were compared across groups of 17 pregnant women on their third trimester and 19 non-pregnant women. Participants also completed a non-emotional test of sustained attention and response inhibition; the Online Continuous Performance Test (OCPT). Pregnant women had poorer performance than controls on most indices of the OCPT and the oddball task. ERP results indicated that pregnancy significantly interacted with the type of target stimuli. Results of the P3 component have demonstrated a comparative reduction in P3 amplitude in pregnant women in response to the target emotional faces but not in response to the target shapes. Moreover, among pregnant women, P3 amplitude was greater for the target shapes than for the target faces, while in non-pregnant women P3 amplitude was greater for the target faces than for the target shapes. Results of the N170 component showed that N170 to faces, but not to shapes, was more pronounced in pregnant women compared with non-pregnant women. The current results provide indication of modulation of cognitive-affective function during pregnancy. ERP alterations may suggest changes in the recruitment of neural resources to process emotional stimuli and alterations in attention allocation and evaluation of emotional stimuli among pregnant women.

  2. Using near-infrared spectroscopy to assess neural activation during object processing in infants.

    PubMed

    Wilcox, Teresa; Bortfeld, Heather; Woods, Rebecca; Wruck, Eric; Boas, David A

    2005-01-01

    The capacity to represent the world in terms of numerically distinct objects (i.e., object individuation) is a milestone in early cognitive development and forms the foundation for more complex thought and behavior. Over the past 10 to 15 yr, infant researchers have expended a great deal of effort to identify the origins and development of this capacity. In contrast, relatively little is known about the neural mechanisms that underlie the ability to individuate objects, in large part because there are a limited number of noninvasive techniques available to measure brain functioning in human infants. Recent research suggests that near-IR spectroscopy (NIRS), an optical imaging technique that uses relative changes in total hemoglobin concentration and oxygenation as an indicator of neural activation, may be a viable procedure for assessing the relation between object processing and brain function in human infants. We examine the extent to which increased neural activation, as measured by NIRS, could be observed in two neural areas known to be involved in object processing, the primary visual cortex and the inferior temporal cortex, during an object processing task. Infants aged 6.5 months are presented with a visual event in which two featurally distinct objects emerge successively to opposite sides of an occluder and neuroimaging data are collected. As predicted, increased neural activation is observed in both the primary visual and inferior cortex during the visual event, suggesting that these neural areas support object processing in the young infant. The outcome has important implications for research in cognitive development, developmental neuroscience, and optical imaging. PMID:15847576

  3. Using Perfusion fMRI to Measure Continuous Changes in Neural Activity with Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olson, Ingrid R.; Rao, Hengyi; Moore, Katherine Sledge; Wang, Jiongjiong; Detre, John A.; Aguirre, Geoffrey K.

    2006-01-01

    In this study, we examine the suitability of a relatively new imaging technique, "arterial spin labeled perfusion imaging," for the study of continuous, gradual changes in neural activity. Unlike BOLD imaging, the perfusion signal is stable over long time-scales, allowing for accurate assessment of continuous performance. In addition, perfusion…

  4. Differences in Feedback- and Inhibition-Related Neural Activity in Adult ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dibbets, Pauline; Evers, Lisbeth; Hurks, Petra; Marchetta, Natalie; Jolles, Jelle

    2009-01-01

    The objective of this study was to examine response inhibition- and feedback-related neural activity in adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) using event-related functional MRI. Sixteen male adults with ADHD and 13 healthy/normal controls participated in this study and performed a modified Go/NoGo task. Behaviourally,…

  5. Extraction of Neural Activity from In Vivo Optical Recordings Using Multiple Independent Component Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshida, Takamasa; Sakagami, Masanori; Yamazaki, Kyoko; Katura, Takusige; Iwamoto, Mitsumasa; Tanaka, Naoki

    A multiple independent component analysis (ICA) method based on the noisy time-delayed decorrelation algorithm is described that overcomes the problems and improves the usefulness of conventional ICA, which is commonly used for extracting the actual neural activity from data measured using optical recording with a voltage-sensitive dye to visualize neural activities in cortical areas as two-dimensional images. The problems with conventional ICA extraction include the lack of an a priori guarantee that the solution will be appropriate, the linear mixing of mutually independent random variables although the mixtures are not random variables but time signals in many applications, and the general requirement for repetitive calculation of large matrices. Application of multiple ICA to the extraction of neural activities in the guinea pig auditory cortex evoked by both click sounds and pure tones from optical recordings made using a voltage sensitive dye demonstrated that it effectively removes pulsatile and respiratory components from the measurement data and extracts neural activities from the optical recordings.

  6. Specific and Nonspecific Neural Activity during Selective Processing of Visual Representations in Working Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oh, Hwamee; Leung, Hoi-Chung

    2010-01-01

    In this fMRI study, we investigated prefrontal cortex (PFC) and visual association regions during selective information processing. We recorded behavioral responses and neural activity during a delayed recognition task with a cue presented during the delay period. A specific cue ("Face" or "Scene") was used to indicate which one of the two…

  7. Differences in neural activation as a function of risk-taking task parameters.

    PubMed

    Congdon, Eliza; Bato, Angelica A; Schonberg, Tom; Mumford, Jeanette A; Karlsgodt, Katherine H; Sabb, Fred W; London, Edythe D; Cannon, Tyrone D; Bilder, Robert M; Poldrack, Russell A

    2013-01-01

    Despite evidence supporting a relationship between impulsivity and naturalistic risk-taking, the relationship of impulsivity with laboratory-based measures of risky decision-making remains unclear. One factor contributing to this gap in our understanding is the degree to which different risky decision-making tasks vary in their details. We conducted an fMRI investigation of the Angling Risk Task (ART), which is an improved behavioral measure of risky decision-making. In order to examine whether the observed pattern of neural activation was specific to the ART or generalizable, we also examined correlates of the Balloon Analog Risk Taking (BART) task in the same sample of 23 healthy adults. Exploratory analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between neural activation, performance, impulsivity and self-reported risk-taking. While activation in a valuation network was associated with reward tracking during the ART but not the BART, increased fronto-cingulate activation was seen during risky choice trials in the BART as compared to the ART. Thus, neural activation during risky decision-making trials differed between the two tasks, and this observation was likely driven by differences in task parameters, namely the absence vs. presence of ambiguity and/or stationary vs. increasing probability of loss on the ART and BART, respectively. Exploratory association analyses suggest that sensitivity of neural response to the magnitude of potential reward during the ART was associated with a suboptimal performance strategy, higher scores on a scale of dysfunctional impulsivity (DI) and a greater likelihood of engaging in risky behaviors, while this pattern was not seen for the BART. Our results suggest that the ART is decomposable and associated with distinct patterns of neural activation; this represents a preliminary step toward characterizing a behavioral measure of risky decision-making that may support a better understanding of naturalistic risk-taking.

  8. Global robust dissipativity of interval recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations.

    PubMed

    Duan, Lian; Huang, Lihong; Guo, Zhenyuan

    2016-07-01

    In this paper, the problems of robust dissipativity and robust exponential dissipativity are discussed for a class of recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations. We extend an invariance principle for the study of the dissipativity problem of delay systems to the discontinuous case. Based on the developed theory, some novel criteria for checking the global robust dissipativity and global robust exponential dissipativity of the addressed neural network model are established by constructing appropriate Lyapunov functionals and employing the theory of Filippov systems and matrix inequality techniques. The effectiveness of the theoretical results is shown by two examples with numerical simulations. PMID:27475061

  9. Global robust dissipativity of interval recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations.

    PubMed

    Duan, Lian; Huang, Lihong; Guo, Zhenyuan

    2016-07-01

    In this paper, the problems of robust dissipativity and robust exponential dissipativity are discussed for a class of recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations. We extend an invariance principle for the study of the dissipativity problem of delay systems to the discontinuous case. Based on the developed theory, some novel criteria for checking the global robust dissipativity and global robust exponential dissipativity of the addressed neural network model are established by constructing appropriate Lyapunov functionals and employing the theory of Filippov systems and matrix inequality techniques. The effectiveness of the theoretical results is shown by two examples with numerical simulations.

  10. Global robust dissipativity of interval recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duan, Lian; Huang, Lihong; Guo, Zhenyuan

    2016-07-01

    In this paper, the problems of robust dissipativity and robust exponential dissipativity are discussed for a class of recurrent neural networks with time-varying delay and discontinuous activations. We extend an invariance principle for the study of the dissipativity problem of delay systems to the discontinuous case. Based on the developed theory, some novel criteria for checking the global robust dissipativity and global robust exponential dissipativity of the addressed neural network model are established by constructing appropriate Lyapunov functionals and employing the theory of Filippov systems and matrix inequality techniques. The effectiveness of the theoretical results is shown by two examples with numerical simulations.

  11. Forecasting geomagnetic activity indices using the Boyle index through artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balasubramanian, Ramkumar

    2010-11-01

    Adverse space weather conditions affect various sectors making both human lives and technologies highly susceptible. This dissertation introduces a new set of algorithms suitable for short term space weather forecasts with an enhanced lead-time and better accuracy in predicting Kp, Dst and the AE index over some leading models. Kp is a 3-hour averaged global geomagnetic activity index good for midlatitude regions. The Dst index, an hourly index calculated using four ground based magnetic field measurements near the equator, measures the energy of the Earth's ring current. The Auroral Electrojet indices or AE indices are hourly indices used to characterize the global geomagnetic activity in the auroral zone. Our algorithms can predict these indices purely from the solar wind data with lead times up to 6 hours. We have trained and tested an ANN (Artificial Neural Network) over a complete solar cycle to serve this purpose. Over the last couple of decades, ANNs have been successful for temporal prediction problems amongst other advanced non-linear techniques. Our ANN-based algorithms receive near-real-time inputs either from ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer), located at L1, and a handful of ground-based magnetometers or only from ACE. The Boyle potential, phi = 10-4 (vkm/sec)2+ 11.7BnT sin3 (theta/2) kV, or the Boyle Index (BI) is an empirically-derived formula that approximates the Earth's polar cap potential and is easily derivable in real time using the solar wind data from ACE. The logarithms of both 3-hour and 1-hour averages of the Boyle Index correlate well with the subsequent Kp, Dst and AE: Kp = 8.93 log 10 - 12.55. Dst = 0.355 - 6.48, and AE = 5.87 - 83.46. Inputs to our ANN models have greatly benefitted from the BI and its proven record as a forecasting parameter since its initiation in October, 2003. A preconditioning event tunes the magnetosphere to a specific state before an impending geomagnetic storm. The neural net not only improves the

  12. Toward an evolutionary perspective on conceptual representation: species-specific calls activate visual and affective processing systems in the macaque.

    PubMed

    Gil-da-Costa, Ricardo; Braun, Allen; Lopes, Marco; Hauser, Marc D; Carson, Richard E; Herscovitch, Peter; Martin, Alex

    2004-12-14

    Non-human primates produce a diverse repertoire of species-specific calls and have rich conceptual systems. Some of their calls are designed to convey information about concepts such as predators, food, and social relationships, as well as the affective state of the caller. Little is known about the neural architecture of these calls, and much of what we do know is based on single-cell physiology from anesthetized subjects. By using positron emission tomography in awake rhesus macaques, we found that conspecific vocalizations elicited activity in higher-order visual areas, including regions in the temporal lobe associated with the visual perception of object form (TE/TEO) and motion (superior temporal sulcus) and storing visual object information into long-term memory (TE), as well as in limbic (the amygdala and hippocampus) and paralimbic regions (ventromedial prefrontal cortex) associated with the interpretation and memory-encoding of highly salient and affective material. This neural circuitry strongly corresponds to the network shown to support representation of conspecifics and affective information in humans. These findings shed light on the evolutionary precursors of conceptual representation in humans, suggesting that monkeys and humans have a common neural substrate for representing object concepts. PMID:15583132

  13. Chromatin Remodeling Inactivates Activity Genes and Regulates Neural Coding

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Kelly K.; Hemberg, Martin; Reddy, Naveen C.; Cho, Ha Y.; Guthrie, Arden N.; Oldenborg, Anna; Heiney, Shane A.; Ohmae, Shogo; Medina, Javier F.; Holy, Timothy E.; Bonni, Azad

    2016-01-01

    Activity-dependent transcription influences neuronal connectivity, but the roles and mechanisms of inactivation of activity-dependent genes have remained poorly understood. Genome-wide analyses in the mouse cerebellum revealed that the nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase (NuRD) complex deposits the histone variant H2A.z at promoters of activity-dependent genes, thereby triggering their inactivation. Purification of translating mRNAs from synchronously developing granule neurons (Sync-TRAP) showed that conditional knockout of the core NuRD subunit Chd4 impairs inactivation of activity-dependent genes when neurons undergo dendrite pruning. Chd4 knockout or expression of NuRD-regulated activity genes impairs dendrite pruning. Imaging of behaving mice revealed hyperresponsivity of granule neurons to sensorimotor stimuli upon Chd4 knockout. Our findings define an epigenetic mechanism that inactivates activity-dependent transcription and regulates dendrite patterning and sensorimotor encoding in the brain. PMID:27418512

  14. How does the anthropogenic activity affect the spring discharge?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hao, Yonghong; Zhang, Juan; Wang, Jiaojiao; Li, Ruifang; Hao, Pengmei; Zhan, Hongbin

    2016-09-01

    Karst hydrological process has largely been altered by climate change and human activity. In many places throughout the world, human activity (e.g. groundwater pumping and dewatering from mining) has intensified and surpassed climate change, where human activity becomes the primary factor that affects groundwater system. But it is still largely unclear how the human activity affects spring discharge in magnitude and periodicity. This study investigates the effects of anthropogenic activity on spring discharge, using the Xin'an Springs of China as an example. The Xin'an Spring discharge were divided into two time periods: the pre-development period from 1956 to 1971 and the post-development period from 1972 to 2013. We confirm the dividing time (i.e. 1971) of these two periods using the Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Then the wavelet transform and wavelet coherence were used to analyze the karst hydrological processes for the two periods respectively. We analyze the correlations of precipitation and the Xin'an spring discharge with the monsoons including the Indian Summer Monsoon (ISM) and the West North Pacific Monsoon (WNPM) and the climate teleconnections including El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), respectively. The results indicated that the spring discharge was attenuated about 19.63% under the influence of human activity in the Xin'an Springs basin. However, human activity did not alter the size of the resonance frequencies between the spring discharge and the monsoons. In contrast, it reinforced the periodicities of the monsoons-driven spring discharge. It suggested that human has adapted to the major climate periodicities, and human activity had the same rhyme with the primary climate periodicity. In return, human activity enhances the correlation between the monsoons and the spring discharge.

  15. Neuronal Heterotopias Affect the Activities of Distant Brain Areas and Lead to Behavioral Deficits.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Kazuhiro; Kubo, Ken-ichiro; Endo, Toshihiro; Yoshida, Keitaro; Benner, Seico; Ito, Yukiko; Aizawa, Hidenori; Aramaki, Michihiko; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Tanaka, Kohichi; Takata, Norio; Tanaka, Kenji F; Mimura, Masaru; Tohyama, Chiharu; Kakeyama, Masaki; Nakajima, Kazunori

    2015-09-01

    Neuronal heterotopia refers to brain malformations resulting from deficits of neuronal migration. Individuals with heterotopias show a high incidence of neurological deficits, such as epilepsy. More recently, it has come to be recognized that focal heterotopias may also show a range of psychiatric problems, including cognitive and behavioral impairments. However, because focal heterotopias are not always located in the brain areas responsible for the symptoms, the causal relationship between the symptoms and heterotopias remains elusive. In this study, we showed that mice with focal heterotopias in the somatosensory cortex generated by in utero electroporation exhibited spatial working memory deficit and low competitive dominance behavior, which have been shown to be closely associated with the activity of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) in rodents. Analysis of the mPFC activity revealed that the immediate-early gene expression was decreased and the local field potentials of the mPFC were altered in the mice with heterotopias compared with the control mice. Moreover, activation of these ectopic and overlying sister neurons using the DREADD (designer receptor exclusively activated by designer drug) system improved the working memory deficits. These findings suggest that cortical regions containing focal heterotopias can affect distant brain regions and give rise to behavioral abnormalities. Significance statement: Recent studies reported that patients with heterotopias have a variety of clinical symptoms, such as cognitive disturbance, psychiatric symptoms, and autistic behavior. However, the causal relationship between the symptoms and heterotopias remains elusive. Here we showed that mice with focal heterotopias in the somatosensory cortex generated by in utero electroporation exhibited behavioral deficits that have been shown to be associated with the mPFC activity in rodents. The existence of heterotopias indeed altered the neural activities of the mPFC, and

  16. Neuronal Heterotopias Affect the Activities of Distant Brain Areas and Lead to Behavioral Deficits.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Kazuhiro; Kubo, Ken-ichiro; Endo, Toshihiro; Yoshida, Keitaro; Benner, Seico; Ito, Yukiko; Aizawa, Hidenori; Aramaki, Michihiko; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Tanaka, Kohichi; Takata, Norio; Tanaka, Kenji F; Mimura, Masaru; Tohyama, Chiharu; Kakeyama, Masaki; Nakajima, Kazunori

    2015-09-01

    Neuronal heterotopia refers to brain malformations resulting from deficits of neuronal migration. Individuals with heterotopias show a high incidence of neurological deficits, such as epilepsy. More recently, it has come to be recognized that focal heterotopias may also show a range of psychiatric problems, including cognitive and behavioral impairments. However, because focal heterotopias are not always located in the brain areas responsible for the symptoms, the causal relationship between the symptoms and heterotopias remains elusive. In this study, we showed that mice with focal heterotopias in the somatosensory cortex generated by in utero electroporation exhibited spatial working memory deficit and low competitive dominance behavior, which have been shown to be closely associated with the activity of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) in rodents. Analysis of the mPFC activity revealed that the immediate-early gene expression was decreased and the local field potentials of the mPFC were altered in the mice with heterotopias compared with the control mice. Moreover, activation of these ectopic and overlying sister neurons using the DREADD (designer receptor exclusively activated by designer drug) system improved the working memory deficits. These findings suggest that cortical regions containing focal heterotopias can affect distant brain regions and give rise to behavioral abnormalities. Significance statement: Recent studies reported that patients with heterotopias have a variety of clinical symptoms, such as cognitive disturbance, psychiatric symptoms, and autistic behavior. However, the causal relationship between the symptoms and heterotopias remains elusive. Here we showed that mice with focal heterotopias in the somatosensory cortex generated by in utero electroporation exhibited behavioral deficits that have been shown to be associated with the mPFC activity in rodents. The existence of heterotopias indeed altered the neural activities of the mPFC, and

  17. Wide-field optical mapping of neural activity and brain haemodynamics: considerations and novel approaches

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Ying; Shaik, Mohammed A.; Kozberg, Mariel G.; Thibodeaux, David N.; Zhao, Hanzhi T.; Yu, Hang

    2016-01-01

    Although modern techniques such as two-photon microscopy can now provide cellular-level three-dimensional imaging of the intact living brain, the speed and fields of view of these techniques remain limited. Conversely, two-dimensional wide-field optical mapping (WFOM), a simpler technique that uses a camera to observe large areas of the exposed cortex under visible light, can detect changes in both neural activity and haemodynamics at very high speeds. Although WFOM may not provide single-neuron or capillary-level resolution, it is an attractive and accessible approach to imaging large areas of the brain in awake, behaving mammals at speeds fast enough to observe widespread neural firing events, as well as their dynamic coupling to haemodynamics. Although such wide-field optical imaging techniques have a long history, the advent of genetically encoded fluorophores that can report neural activity with high sensitivity, as well as modern technologies such as light emitting diodes and sensitive and high-speed digital cameras have driven renewed interest in WFOM. To facilitate the wider adoption and standardization of WFOM approaches for neuroscience and neurovascular coupling research, we provide here an overview of the basic principles of WFOM, considerations for implementation of wide-field fluorescence imaging of neural activity, spectroscopic analysis and interpretation of results. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience’. PMID:27574312

  18. Wide-field optical mapping of neural activity and brain haemodynamics: considerations and novel approaches.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ying; Shaik, Mohammed A; Kim, Sharon H; Kozberg, Mariel G; Thibodeaux, David N; Zhao, Hanzhi T; Yu, Hang; Hillman, Elizabeth M C

    2016-10-01

    Although modern techniques such as two-photon microscopy can now provide cellular-level three-dimensional imaging of the intact living brain, the speed and fields of view of these techniques remain limited. Conversely, two-dimensional wide-field optical mapping (WFOM), a simpler technique that uses a camera to observe large areas of the exposed cortex under visible light, can detect changes in both neural activity and haemodynamics at very high speeds. Although WFOM may not provide single-neuron or capillary-level resolution, it is an attractive and accessible approach to imaging large areas of the brain in awake, behaving mammals at speeds fast enough to observe widespread neural firing events, as well as their dynamic coupling to haemodynamics. Although such wide-field optical imaging techniques have a long history, the advent of genetically encoded fluorophores that can report neural activity with high sensitivity, as well as modern technologies such as light emitting diodes and sensitive and high-speed digital cameras have driven renewed interest in WFOM. To facilitate the wider adoption and standardization of WFOM approaches for neuroscience and neurovascular coupling research, we provide here an overview of the basic principles of WFOM, considerations for implementation of wide-field fluorescence imaging of neural activity, spectroscopic analysis and interpretation of results.This article is part of the themed issue 'Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience'. PMID:27574312

  19. Wide-field optical mapping of neural activity and brain haemodynamics: considerations and novel approaches.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ying; Shaik, Mohammed A; Kim, Sharon H; Kozberg, Mariel G; Thibodeaux, David N; Zhao, Hanzhi T; Yu, Hang; Hillman, Elizabeth M C

    2016-10-01

    Although modern techniques such as two-photon microscopy can now provide cellular-level three-dimensional imaging of the intact living brain, the speed and fields of view of these techniques remain limited. Conversely, two-dimensional wide-field optical mapping (WFOM), a simpler technique that uses a camera to observe large areas of the exposed cortex under visible light, can detect changes in both neural activity and haemodynamics at very high speeds. Although WFOM may not provide single-neuron or capillary-level resolution, it is an attractive and accessible approach to imaging large areas of the brain in awake, behaving mammals at speeds fast enough to observe widespread neural firing events, as well as their dynamic coupling to haemodynamics. Although such wide-field optical imaging techniques have a long history, the advent of genetically encoded fluorophores that can report neural activity with high sensitivity, as well as modern technologies such as light emitting diodes and sensitive and high-speed digital cameras have driven renewed interest in WFOM. To facilitate the wider adoption and standardization of WFOM approaches for neuroscience and neurovascular coupling research, we provide here an overview of the basic principles of WFOM, considerations for implementation of wide-field fluorescence imaging of neural activity, spectroscopic analysis and interpretation of results.This article is part of the themed issue 'Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience'.

  20. Neural Mechanism by which Gravitational Stimuli and Stress Affect the Secretion of Renin and Other Hormones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ganong, W. F.; Gotoh, E.; Alper, R. H.

    1985-01-01

    The serotonin-releasing drug p-chloroamphetamine (PCA), as well as L-propranolol and chloriasondamine were used in a study which established that the pathway from the hypothalamus to the kidneys is sympathetic. Which hypothalamic nuclei mediate the response to PCA is being investigated experiments are being conducted to determine a readily reproducible psychological stimulus to renin secretion that can be used in rats. The effects of equithesin, urethane, and inactin on plasma renin activity were examined in preparation for tilting experiments. The relation of vasopressin-secreting neurons in the brain sem to PCA response was explored in Brattleboro rats that are congenitally unable to produce vasopressin in their hypothalami.

  1. Plumbagin Promotes the Generation of Astrocytes from Rat Spinal Cord Neural Progenitors Via Activation of the Transcription Factor Stat3

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Yongquan; Mughal, Mohamed; Ouyang, Xin; Jiang, Haiyang; Luo, Tae-Gen Son Weiming; Yu, Qian-Sheng; Greig, Nigel H.; Mattson, Mark P.

    2010-01-01

    Plumbagin (5-hydroxy-2-methyl-1,4 naphthoquinone) is a naturally occurring low molecular weight lipophilic phytochemical derived from roots of plants of the Plumbago genus. Plumbagin has been reported to have several clinically relevant biological activities in non-neural cells including antiatherosclerotic, anticoagulant, anticarcinogenic, antitumor and bactericidal effects. In a recent screen of a panel of botanical pesticides we identified plumbagin as having neuroprotective activity. In the present study we determined if plumbagin could modify the developmental fate of rat E14.5 embryonic neural progenitor cells (NPC). Plumbagin exhibited no cytotoxicity when applied to cultured NPC at concentrations below 1 µM. At a concentration of 0.1 µM, plumbagin significantly enhanced the proliferation of NPC as indicated by a 17% increase in the percentage of cells incorporating bromo-deoxyuridine. plumbagin at a concentration of 0.1 pM (but not 0.1 µM), stimulated the production of astrocytes as indicated by increased GFAP expression. Plumbagin selectively induced the proliferation and differentiation of glial progenitor cells without affecting the proliferation or differentiation of neuron-restricted progenitors. Plumbagin (0.1 pM) rapidly activated the transcription factor Stat3 in NPC, and a Stat3 inhibitor peptide prevented both plumbagin-induced astrocyte formation and proliferation. These findings demonstrate the ability of a low molecular weight naturally occurring phytochemical to control the fate of glial progenitor cells by a mechanism involving the Stat3 signaling pathway. PMID:20456019

  2. Adaptations of motor neural structures' activity to lapses in attention.

    PubMed

    Derosière, Gérard; Billot, Maxime; Ward, E Tomas; Perrey, Stéphane

    2015-01-01

    Sustained attention is fundamental for cognition and when impaired, impacts negatively on important contemporary living skills. Degradation in sustained attention is characterized by the time-on-task (TOT) effect, which manifests as a gradual increase in reaction time (RT). The TOT effect is accompanied by changes in relative brain activity patterns in attention-related areas, most noticeably in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and the right parietal areas. However, activity changes in task-relevant motor structures have not been confirmed to date. This article describes an investigation of such motor-related activity changes as measured with 1) the time course of corticospinal excitability (CSE) through single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation; and 2) the changes in activity of premotor (PMC), primary motor (M1), PFC, and right parietal areas by means of near-infrared spectroscopy, during a sustained attention RT task exhibiting the TOT effect. Our results corroborate established findings such as a significant increase (P < 0.05) in lateral prefrontal and right parietal areas activity after the emergence of the TOT effect but also reveal adaptations in the form of motor activity changes--in particular, a significant increase in CSE (P < 0.01) and in primary motor area (M1) activity (P < 0.05).

  3. Correlates of reward-predictive value in learning-related hippocampal neural activity

    PubMed Central

    Okatan, Murat

    2009-01-01

    Temporal difference learning (TD) is a popular algorithm in machine learning. Two learning signals that are derived from this algorithm, the predictive value and the prediction error, have been shown to explain changes in neural activity and behavior during learning across species. Here, the predictive value signal is used to explain the time course of learning-related changes in the activity of hippocampal neurons in monkeys performing an associative learning task. The TD algorithm serves as the centerpiece of a joint probability model for the learning-related neural activity and the behavioral responses recorded during the task. The neural component of the model consists of spiking neurons that compete and learn the reward-predictive value of task-relevant input signals. The predictive-value signaled by these neurons influences the behavioral response generated by a stochastic decision stage, which constitutes the behavioral component of the model. It is shown that the time course of the changes in neural activity and behavioral performance generated by the model exhibits key features of the experimental data. The results suggest that information about correct associations may be expressed in the hippocampus before it is detected in the behavior of a subject. In this way, the hippocampus may be among the earliest brain areas to express learning and drive the behavioral changes associated with learning. Correlates of reward-predictive value may be expressed in the hippocampus through rate remapping within spatial memory representations, they may represent reward-related aspects of a declarative or explicit relational memory representation of task contingencies, or they may correspond to reward-related components of episodic memory representations. These potential functions are discussed in connection with hippocampal cell assembly sequences and their reverse reactivation during the awake state. The results provide further support for the proposal that neural

  4. Role of Electrical Activity in Promoting Neural Repair

    PubMed Central

    Goldberg, Jeffrey L.

    2012-01-01

    The nervous system communicates in a language of electrical activities. The motivation to replace function lost through injury or disease through electrical prostheses has gained traction through steady advances in basic and translational science addressing the interface between electrical prostheses and the nervous system. Recent experiments suggest that electrical activity, signaling through specific molecular pathways, promotes neuronal survival and regeneration. Such data suggests that electrical prostheses, in addition to replacing lost function, may slow underlying degenerative disease or induce regenerative response. Here we review these data with a focus on retinal neurons, and discuss current efforts to translate this effect of electrical activity into clinically applicable treatments. PMID:22342908

  5. Remembrance of things touched: How sensorimotor experience affects the neural instantiation of object form

    PubMed Central

    Oliver, Robyn T.; Geiger, Emily J.; Lewandowski, Brian C.; Thompson-Schill, Sharon L.

    2009-01-01

    Numerous neuroimaging and neuropsychological studies have highlighted the role of the ventral, occipitotemporal visual processing stream in the representation and retrieval of semantic memory for the appearance of objects. Here, we examine the role of the parietal cortex in retrieval of object shape information. fMRI data were acquired as subjects listened to the names of common objects and made judgments about their shape. Recruitment of the left inferior parietal lobule (IPL) during shape retrieval was modulated by the amount of prior tactile experience associated with the objects. In addition, the same pattern of activity was observed in right postcentral gyrus, suggesting that the representation of object shape is distributed amongst regions that are relevant to the sensorimotor acquisition history of this attribute, as predicted by distributed models of semantic memory. PMID:18760292

  6. Fluorescent probes as a tool for cell population tracking in spontaneously active neural networks derived from human pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Mäkinen, M; Joki, T; Ylä-Outinen, L; Skottman, H; Narkilahti, S; Aänismaa, R

    2013-04-30

    Applications such as 3D cultures and tissue modelling require cell tracking with non-invasive methods. In this work, the suitability of two fluorescent probes, CellTracker, CT, and long chain carbocyanine dye, DiD, was investigated for long-term culturing of labeled human pluripotent stem cell-derived neural cells. We found that these dyes did not affect the cell viability. However, proliferation was decreased in DiD labeled cell population. With both dyes the labeling was stable up to 4 weeks. CT and DiD labeled cells could be co-cultured and, importantly, these mixed populations had their normal ability to form spontaneous electrical network activity. In conclusion, human neural cells can be successfully labeled with these two fluorescent probes without significantly affecting the cell characteristics. These labeled cells could be utilized further in e.g. building controlled neuronal networks for neurotoxicity screening platforms, combining cells with biomaterials for 3D studies, and graft development. PMID:23473797

  7. Constructive feedforward neural networks using hermite polynomial activation functions.

    PubMed

    Ma, Liying; Khorasani, K

    2005-07-01

    In this paper, a constructive one-hidden-layer network is introduced where each hidden unit employs a polynomial function for its activation function that is different from other units. Specifically, both a structure level as well as a function level adaptation methodologies are utilized in constructing the network. The functional level adaptation scheme ensures that the "growing" or constructive network has different activation functions for each neuron such that the network may be able to capture the underlying input-output map more effectively. The activation functions considered consist of orthonormal Hermite polynomials. It is shown through extensive simulations that the proposed network yields improved performance when compared to networks having identical sigmoidal activation functions.

  8. Evaluating a Genetically Encoded Optical Sensor of Neural Activity Using Electrophysiology in Intact Adult Fruit Flies

    PubMed Central

    Jayaraman, Vivek; Laurent, Gilles

    2007-01-01

    Genetically encoded optical indicators hold the promise of enabling non-invasive monitoring of activity in identified neurons in behaving organisms. However, the interpretation of images of brain activity produced using such sensors is not straightforward. Several recent studies of sensory coding used G-CaMP 1.3—a calcium sensor—as an indicator of neural activity; some of these studies characterized the imaged neurons as having narrow tuning curves, a conclusion not always supported by parallel electrophysiological studies. To better understand the possible cause of these conflicting results, we performed simultaneous in vivo 2-photon imaging and electrophysiological recording of G-CaMP 1.3 expressing neurons in the antennal lobe (AL) of intact fruitflies. We find that G-CaMP has a relatively high threshold, that its signal often fails to capture spiking response kinetics, and that it can miss even high instantaneous rates of activity if those are not sustained. While G-CaMP can be misleading, it is clearly useful for the identification of promising neural targets: when electrical activity is well above the sensor's detection threshold, its signal is fairly well correlated with mean firing rate and G-CaMP does not appear to alter significantly the responses of neurons that express it. The methods we present should enable any genetically encoded sensor, activator, or silencer to be evaluated in an intact neural circuit in vivo in Drosophila. PMID:18946545

  9. Mild mutations in the pan neural gene prospero affect male-specific behaviour in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Grosjean, Yaël; Savy, Mathilde; Soichot, Julien; Everaerts, Claude; Cézilly, Frank; Ferveur, Jean François

    2004-01-30

    The fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster is one of the most appropriate model organisms to study the genetics of behaviour. Here, we focus on prospero (pros), a key gene for the development of the nervous system which specifies multiple aspects from the early formation of the embryonic central nervous system to the formation of larval and adult sensory organs. We studied the effects on locomotion, courtship and mating behaviour of three mild pros mutations. These newly isolated pros mutations were induced after the incomplete excision of a transposable genomic element that, before excision, caused a lethal phenotype during larval development. Strikingly, these mutant strains, but not the strains with a clean excision, produced a high frequency of heterozygous flies, after more than 50 generations in the lab. We investigated the factors that could decrease the fitness of homozygotes relatively to heterozygous pros mutant flies. Flies of both genotypes had slightly different levels of fertility. More strikingly, homozygous mutant males had a lower sexual activity than heterozygous males and failed to mate in a competitive situation. No similar effect was detected in mutant females. These findings suggest that mild mutations in pros did not alter vital functions during development but drastically changed adult male behaviour and reproductive fitness. PMID:14744542

  10. Notch Activity Modulates the Responsiveness of Neural Progenitors to Sonic Hedgehog Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Jennifer H.; Yang, Linlin; Dessaud, Eric; Chuang, Katherine; Moore, Destaye M.; Rohatgi, Rajat; Briscoe, James; Novitch, Bennett G.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Throughout the developing nervous system, neural stem and progenitor cells give rise to diverse classes of neurons and glia in a spatially and temporally coordinated manner. In the ventral spinal cord, much of this diversity emerges through the morphogen actions of Sonic hedgehog (Shh). Interpretation of the Shh gradient depends on both the amount of ligand and duration of exposure, but the mechanisms permitting prolonged responses to Shh are not well understood. We demonstrate that Notch signaling plays an essential role in this process, enabling neural progenitors to attain sufficiently high levels of Shh pathway activity needed to direct the ventral-most cell fates. Notch activity regulates subcellular localization of the Shh receptor Patched1, gating the translocation of the key effector Smoothened to primary cilia and its downstream signaling activities. These data reveal an unexpected role for Notch shaping the interpretation of the Shh morphogen gradient and influencing cell fate determination. PMID:25936505

  11. Investigating the correlation between the neural activity and task performance in a psychomotor vigilance test.

    PubMed

    Hu, Zhongze; Sun, Yu; Lim, Julian; Thakor, Nitish; Bezerianos, Anastasios

    2015-01-01

    Neural activity is known to correlate with decrements in task performance as individuals enter the state of mental fatigue which might lead to lowered productivity and increased safety risks. Incorporating a passive brain computer interface (BCI) technique that detects changes in subject's neural activity and predicts the behavioral performance when the subject is underperforming might be a promising approach to reduce human error in real-world situations. Here, we developed a reliable model using EEG power spectrum to estimate time-on-task performance in a psychomotor vigilance test (PVT) which can fit across individuals. High correlation between the estimated and actual reaction time was achieved. Hence, our results illustrate the feasibility for modeling time-on-task decrements in performance among different individuals from their brainwave activity, with potential applications in several domains, including traffic and industrial safety. PMID:26737349

  12. Video-based convolutional neural networks for activity recognition from robot-centric videos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryoo, M. S.; Matthies, Larry

    2016-05-01

    In this evaluation paper, we discuss convolutional neural network (CNN)-based approaches for human activity recognition. In particular, we investigate CNN architectures designed to capture temporal information in videos and their applications to the human activity recognition problem. There have been multiple previous works to use CNN-features for videos. These include CNNs using 3-D XYT convolutional filters, CNNs using pooling operations on top of per-frame image-based CNN descriptors, and recurrent neural networks to learn temporal changes in per-frame CNN descriptors. We experimentally compare some of these different representatives CNNs while using first-person human activity videos. We especially focus on videos from a robots viewpoint, captured during its operations and human-robot interactions.

  13. Dampened neural activity and abolition of epileptic-like activity in cortical slices by active ingredients of spices.

    PubMed

    Pezzoli, Maurizio; Elhamdani, Abdeladim; Camacho, Susana; Meystre, Julie; González, Stephanie Michlig; le Coutre, Johannes; Markram, Henry

    2014-10-31

    Active ingredients of spices (AIS) modulate neural response in the peripheral nervous system, mainly through interaction with TRP channel/receptors. The present study explores how different AIS modulate neural response in layer 5 pyramidal neurons of S1 neocortex. The AIS tested are agonists of TRPV1/3, TRPM8 or TRPA1. Our results demonstrate that capsaicin, eugenol, menthol, icilin and cinnamaldehyde, but not AITC dampen the generation of APs in a voltage- and time-dependent manner. This effect was further tested for the TRPM8 ligands in the presence of a TRPM8 blocker (BCTC) and on TRPM8 KO mice. The observable effect was still present. Finally, the influence of the selected AIS was tested on in vitro gabazine-induced seizures. Results coincide with the above observations: except for cinnamaldehyde, the same AIS were able to reduce the number, duration of the AP bursts and increase the concentration of gabazine needed to elicit them. In conclusion, our data suggests that some of these AIS can modulate glutamatergic neurons in the brain through a TRP-independent pathway, regardless of whether the neurons are stimulated intracellularly or by hyperactive microcircuitry.

  14. Substrate elasticity affects bovine satellite cell activation kinetics in vitro.

    PubMed

    Lapin, M R; Gonzalez, J M; Johnson, S E

    2013-05-01

    Satellite cells support efficient postnatal skeletal muscle hypertrophy through fusion into the adjacent muscle fiber. Nuclear contribution allows for maintenance of the fiber myonuclear domain and proficient transcription of myogenic genes. Niche growth factors affect satellite cell biology; however, the interplay between fiber elasticity and microenvironment proteins remains largely unknown. The objective of the experiment was to examine the effects of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and surface elasticity on bovine satellite cell (BSC) activation kinetics in vitro. Young's elastic modulus was calculated for the semimembranosus (SM) and LM muscles of young bulls (5 d; n = 8) and adult cows (27 mo; n = 4) cattle. Results indicate that LM elasticity decreased (P < 0.05) with age; no difference in Young's modulus for the SM was noted. Bovine satellite cells were seeded atop polyacrylamide bioscaffolds with surface elasticities that mimic young bull and adult cow LM or traditional cultureware. Cells were maintained in low-serum media supplemented with 5 ng/mL HGF or vehicle only for 24 or 48 h. Activation was evaluated by proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) immunocytochemistry. Results indicate that BSC maintained on rigid surfaces were activated at 24 h and refractive to HGF supplementation. By contrast, fewer (P < 0.05) BSC had exited quiescence after 24 h of culture on surfaces reflective of either young bull (8.1 ± 1.7 kPa) or adult cow (14.6 ± 1.6 kPa) LM. Supplementation with HGF promoted activation of BSC cultured on bioscaffolds as measured by an increase (P < 0.05) in PCNA immunopositive cells. Culture on pliant surfaces affected neither activation kinetics nor numbers of Paired box 7 (Pax7) immunopositive muscle stem cells (P > 0.05). However, with increasing surface elasticity, an increase (P < 0.05) in the numbers of muscle progenitors was observed. These results confirm that biophysical and biochemical signals regulate BSC activation.

  15. TNF-α Affects Human Cortical Neural Progenitor Cell Differentiation through the Autocrine Secretion of Leukemia Inhibitory Factor

    PubMed Central

    Lan, Xiqian; Chen, Qiang; Wang, Yongxiang; Jia, Beibei; Sun, Lijun; Zheng, Jialin; Peng, Hui

    2012-01-01

    Proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) is a crucial effector of immune responses in the brain that participates in the pathogenesis of several acute and chronic neurodegenerative disorders. Accumulating evidence has suggested that TNF-α negatively regulates embryonic and adult neurogenesis. However, the effect of TNF-α on cell fate decision in human neural progenitor cells (NPCs) has rarely been studied. Our previous studies have shown that recombinant TNF-α enhances astrogliogenesis and inhibits neurogenesis of human NPCs through the STAT3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) pathway. In the current study, we further elucidated the specific mechanism involved in TNF-α-induced astrogliogenesis. We found that TNF-α activated STAT3 at delayed time points (6 h and 24 h), whereas conditioned medium collected from TNF-α-treated NPCs induced an immediate STAT3 activation. These data suggest TNF-α plays an indirect role on STAT3 activation and the subsequent NPC differentiation. Further, we showed that TNF-α induced abundant amounts of the IL-6 family cytokines, including Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and Interleukin 6 (IL-6), in human NPCs. TNF-α-induced STAT3 phosphorylation and astrogliogenesis were abrogated by the addition of neutralizing antibody for LIF, but not for IL-6, revealing a critical role of autocrine secretion of LIF in TNF-α-induced STAT3 activation and astrogliogenesis. This study generates important data elucidating the role of TNF-α in neurogenesis and may provide insight into new therapeutic strategies for brain inflammation. PMID:23236394

  16. A new perspective on behavioral inconsistency and neural noise in aging: compensatory speeding of neural communication

    PubMed Central

    Hong, S. Lee; Rebec, George V.

    2012-01-01

    This paper seeks to present a new perspective on the aging brain. Here, we make connections between two key phenomena of brain aging: (1) increased neural noise or random background activity; and (2) slowing of brain activity. Our perspective proposes the possibility that the slowing of neural processing due to decreasing nerve conduction velocities leads to a compensatory speeding of neuron firing rates. These increased firing rates lead to a broader distribution of power in the frequency spectrum of neural oscillations, which we propose, can just as easily be interpreted as neural noise. Compensatory speeding of neural activity, as we present, is constrained by the: (A) availability of metabolic energy sources; and (B) competition for frequency bandwidth needed for neural communication. We propose that these constraints lead to the eventual inability to compensate for age-related declines in neural function that are manifested clinically as deficits in cognition, affect, and motor behavior. PMID:23055970

  17. Optogenetics and thermogenetics: technologies for controlling the activity of targeted cells within intact neural circuits

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Jacob G.; Garrity, Paul A.; Boyden, Edward S.

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, interest has grown in the ability to manipulate, in a temporally precise fashion, the electrical activity of specific neurons embedded within densely wired brain circuits, in order to reveal how specific neurons subserve behaviors and neural computations, and to open up new horizons on the clinical treatment of brain disorders. Technologies that enable temporally precise control of electrical activity of specific neurons, and not these neurons ’ neighbors – whose cell bodies or processes might be just tens to hundreds of nanometers away – must involve two components. First, they require as a trigger a transient pulse of energy that supports the temporal precision of the control. Second, they require a molecular sensitizer that can be expressed in specific neurons and which renders those neurons specifically responsive to the triggering energy delivered. Optogenetic tools, such as microbial opsins, can be used to activate or silence neural activity with brief pulses of light. Thermogenetic tools, such as thermosensitive TRP channels, can be used to drive neural activity downstream of increases or decreases in temperature. We here discuss the principles underlying the operation of these two recently developed, but widely used, toolboxes, as well as the directions being taken in the use and improvement of these toolboxes. PMID:22119320

  18. Implications of the Dependence of Neuronal Activity on Neural Network States for the Design of Brain-Machine Interfaces.

    PubMed

    Panzeri, Stefano; Safaai, Houman; De Feo, Vito; Vato, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) can improve the quality of life of patients with sensory and motor disabilities by both decoding motor intentions expressed by neural activity, and by encoding artificially sensed information into patterns of neural activity elicited by causal interventions on the neural tissue. Yet, current BMIs can exchange relatively small amounts of information with the brain. This problem has proved difficult to overcome by simply increasing the number of recording or stimulating electrodes, because trial-to-trial variability of neural activity partly arises from intrinsic factors (collectively known as the network state) that include ongoing spontaneous activity and neuromodulation, and so is shared among neurons. Here we review recent progress in characterizing the state dependence of neural responses, and in particular of how neural responses depend on endogenous slow fluctuations of network excitability. We then elaborate on how this knowledge may be used to increase the amount of information that BMIs exchange with brain. Knowledge of network state can be used to fine-tune the stimulation pattern that should reliably elicit a target neural response used to encode information in the brain, and to discount part of the trial-by-trial variability of neural responses, so that they can be decoded more accurately.

  19. Implications of the Dependence of Neuronal Activity on Neural Network States for the Design of Brain-Machine Interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Panzeri, Stefano; Safaai, Houman; De Feo, Vito; Vato, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) can improve the quality of life of patients with sensory and motor disabilities by both decoding motor intentions expressed by neural activity, and by encoding artificially sensed information into patterns of neural activity elicited by causal interventions on the neural tissue. Yet, current BMIs can exchange relatively small amounts of information with the brain. This problem has proved difficult to overcome by simply increasing the number of recording or stimulating electrodes, because trial-to-trial variability of neural activity partly arises from intrinsic factors (collectively known as the network state) that include ongoing spontaneous activity and neuromodulation, and so is shared among neurons. Here we review recent progress in characterizing the state dependence of neural responses, and in particular of how neural responses depend on endogenous slow fluctuations of network excitability. We then elaborate on how this knowledge may be used to increase the amount of information that BMIs exchange with brain. Knowledge of network state can be used to fine-tune the stimulation pattern that should reliably elicit a target neural response used to encode information in the brain, and to discount part of the trial-by-trial variability of neural responses, so that they can be decoded more accurately. PMID:27147955

  20. Implications of the Dependence of Neuronal Activity on Neural Network States for the Design of Brain-Machine Interfaces.

    PubMed

    Panzeri, Stefano; Safaai, Houman; De Feo, Vito; Vato, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) can improve the quality of life of patients with sensory and motor disabilities by both decoding motor intentions expressed by neural activity, and by encoding artificially sensed information into patterns of neural activity elicited by causal interventions on the neural tissue. Yet, current BMIs can exchange relatively small amounts of information with the brain. This problem has proved difficult to overcome by simply increasing the number of recording or stimulating electrodes, because trial-to-trial variability of neural activity partly arises from intrinsic factors (collectively known as the network state) that include ongoing spontaneous activity and neuromodulation, and so is shared among neurons. Here we review recent progress in characterizing the state dependence of neural responses, and in particular of how neural responses depend on endogenous slow fluctuations of network excitability. We then elaborate on how this knowledge may be used to increase the amount of information that BMIs exchange with brain. Knowledge of network state can be used to fine-tune the stimulation pattern that should reliably elicit a target neural response used to encode information in the brain, and to discount part of the trial-by-trial variability of neural responses, so that they can be decoded more accurately. PMID:27147955

  1. Litter Environment Affects Behavior and Brain Metabolic Activity of Adult Knockout Mice

    PubMed Central

    Crews, David; Rushworth, David; Gonzalez-Lima, Francisco; Ogawa, Sonoko

    2009-01-01

    In mammals, the formative environment for social and anxiety-related behaviors is the family unit; in the case of rodents, this is the litter and the mother-young bond. A deciding factor in this environment is the sex ratio of the litter and, in the case of mice lacking functional copies of gene(s), the ratio of the various genotypes in the litter. Both Sex and Genotype ratios of the litter affect the nature and quality of the individual's behavior later in adulthood, as well as metabolic activity in brain nuclei that underlie these behaviors. Mice were raised in litters reconstituted shortly after to birth to control for sex ratio and genotype ratio (wild type pups versus pups lacking a functional estrogen receptor α). In both males and females, the Sex and Genotype of siblings in the litter affected aggressive behaviors as well as patterns of metabolic activity in limbic nuclei in the social behavior network later in adulthood. Further, this pattern in males varied depending upon the Genotype of their brothers and sisters. Principal Components Analysis revealed two components comprised of several amygdalar and hypothalamic nuclei; the VMH showed strong correlations in both clusters, suggesting its pivotal nature in the organization of two neural networks. PMID:19707539

  2. Elevated reward-related neural activation as a unique biological marker of bipolar disorder: assessment and treatment implications.

    PubMed

    Nusslock, Robin; Young, Christina B; Damme, Katherine S F

    2014-11-01

    Growing evidence indicates that risk for bipolar disorder is characterized by elevated activation in a fronto-striatal reward neural circuit involving the ventral striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, among other regions. It is proposed that individuals with abnormally elevated reward-related neural activation are at risk for experiencing an excessive increase in approach-related motivation during life events involving rewards or goal striving and attainment. In the extreme, this increase in motivation is reflected in hypomanic/manic symptoms. By contrast, unipolar depression (without a history of hypomania/mania) is characterized by decreased reward responsivity and decreased reward-related neural activation. Collectively, this suggests that risk for bipolar disorder and unipolar depression are characterized by distinct and opposite profiles of reward processing and reward-related neural activation. The objective of the present paper is threefold. First, we review the literature on reward processing and reward-related neural activation in bipolar disorder, and in particular risk for hypomania/mania. Second, we propose that reward-related neural activation reflects a biological marker of differential risk for bipolar disorder versus unipolar depression that may help facilitate psychiatric assessment and differential diagnosis. We also discuss, however, the challenges to using neuroscience techniques and biological markers in a clinical setting for assessment and diagnostic purposes. Lastly, we address the pharmacological and psychosocial treatment implications of research on reward-related neural activation in bipolar disorder. PMID:25241675

  3. Average activity of excitatory and inhibitory neural populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roulet, Javier; Mindlin, Gabriel B.

    2016-09-01

    We develop an extension of the Ott-Antonsen method [E. Ott and T. M. Antonsen, Chaos 18(3), 037113 (2008)] that allows obtaining the mean activity (spiking rate) of a population of excitable units. By means of the Ott-Antonsen method, equations for the dynamics of the order parameters of coupled excitatory and inhibitory populations of excitable units are obtained, and their mean activities are computed. Two different excitable systems are studied: Adler units and theta neurons. The resulting bifurcation diagrams are compared with those obtained from studying the phenomenological Wilson-Cowan model in some regions of the parameter space. Compatible behaviors, as well as higher dimensional chaotic solutions, are observed. We study numerical simulations to further validate the equations.

  4. Optimal Recognition Method of Human Activities Using Artificial Neural Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oniga, Stefan; József, Sütő

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this research is an exhaustive analysis of the various factors that may influence the recognition rate of the human activity using wearable sensors data. We made a total of 1674 simulations on a publically released human activity database by a group of researcher from the University of California at Berkeley. In a previous research, we analyzed the influence of the number of sensors and their placement. In the present research we have examined the influence of the number of sensor nodes, the type of sensor node, preprocessing algorithms, type of classifier and its parameters. The final purpose is to find the optimal setup for best recognition rates with lowest hardware and software costs.

  5. Placebo-Activated Neural Systems are Linked to Antidepressant Responses

    PubMed Central

    Peciña, Marta; Bohnert, Amy S. B.; Sikora, Magdalena; Avery, Erich T.; Langenecker, Scott A.; Mickey, Brian J.; Zubieta, Jon-Kar

    2016-01-01

    Importance High placebo responses have been observed across a wide range of pathologies, severely impacting drug development. Objective Here we examined neurochemical mechanisms underlying the formation of placebo effects in patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). Participants Thirty-five medication-free MDD patients. Design and Intervention We performed a single-blinded two-week cross-over randomized controlled trial of two identical oral placebos (described as having either “active” or “inactive” fast-acting antidepressant-like effects) followed by a 10-week open-label treatment with a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) or in some cases, another agent as clinically indicated. The volunteers were studied with PET and the μ-opioid receptor (MOR)-selective radiotracer [11C]carfentanil after each 1-week “inactive” and “active” oral placebo treatment. In addition, 1 mL of isotonic saline was administered intravenously (i.v.) within sight of the volunteer during PET scanning every 4 min over 20 min only after the 1-week active placebo treatment, with instructions that the compound may be associated with the activation of brain systems involved in mood improvement. This challenge stimulus was utilized to test the individual capacity to acutely activate endogenous opioid neurotransmision under expectations of antidepressant effect. Setting A University Health System. Main Outcomes and Measures Changes in depressive symptoms in response to “active” placebo and antidepressant. Baseline and activation measures of MOR binding. Results Higher baseline MOR binding in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) was associated with better response to antidepressant treatment (r=0.48; p=0.02). Reductions in depressive symptoms after 1-week of “active” placebo treatment, compared to the “inactive”, were associated with increased placebo-induced μ-opioid neurotransmission in a network of regions implicated in emotion, stress regulation, and the

  6. Differences in neural activity when processing emotional arousal and valence in autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Tseng, Angela; Wang, Zhishun; Huo, Yuankai; Goh, Suzanne; Russell, James A; Peterson, Bradley S

    2016-02-01

    Individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have difficulty recognizing and interpreting facial expressions of emotion, which may impair their ability to navigate and communicate successfully in their social, interpersonal environments. Characterizing specific differences between individuals with ASD and their typically developing (TD) counterparts in the neural activity subserving their experience of emotional faces may provide distinct targets for ASD interventions. Thus we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and a parametric experimental design to identify brain regions in which neural activity correlated with ratings of arousal and valence for a broad range of emotional faces. Participants (51 ASD, 84 TD) were group-matched by age, sex, IQ, race, and socioeconomic status. Using task-related change in blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI signal as a measure, and covarying for age, sex, FSIQ, and ADOS scores, we detected significant differences across diagnostic groups in the neural activity subserving the dimension of arousal but not valence. BOLD-signal in TD participants correlated inversely with ratings of arousal in regions associated primarily with attentional functions, whereas BOLD-signal in ASD participants correlated positively with arousal ratings in regions commonly associated with impulse control and default-mode activity. Only minor differences were detected between groups in the BOLD signal correlates of valence ratings. Our findings provide unique insight into the emotional experiences of individuals with ASD. Although behavioral responses to face-stimuli were comparable across diagnostic groups, the corresponding neural activity for our ASD and TD groups differed dramatically. The near absence of group differences for valence correlates and the presence of strong group differences for arousal correlates suggest that individuals with ASD are not atypical in all aspects of emotion-processing. Studying these similarities

  7. Relation of obesity to neural activation in response to food commercials.

    PubMed

    Gearhardt, Ashley N; Yokum, Sonja; Stice, Eric; Harris, Jennifer L; Brownell, Kelly D

    2014-07-01

    Adolescents view thousands of food commercials annually, but the neural response to food advertising and its association with obesity is largely unknown. This study is the first to examine how neural response to food commercials differs from other stimuli (e.g. non-food commercials and television show) and to explore how this response may differ by weight status. The blood oxygen level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging activation was measured in 30 adolescents ranging from lean to obese in response to food and non-food commercials imbedded in a television show. Adolescents exhibited greater activation in regions implicated in visual processing (e.g. occipital gyrus), attention (e.g. parietal lobes), cognition (e.g. temporal gyrus and posterior cerebellar lobe), movement (e.g. anterior cerebellar cortex), somatosensory response (e.g. postcentral gyrus) and reward [e.g. orbitofrontal cortex and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC)] during food commercials. Obese participants exhibited less activation during food relative to non-food commercials in neural regions implicated in visual processing (e.g. cuneus), attention (e.g. posterior cerebellar lobe), reward (e.g. ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ACC) and salience detection (e.g. precuneus). Obese participants did exhibit greater activation in a region implicated in semantic control (e.g. medial temporal gyrus). These findings may inform current policy debates regarding the impact of food advertising to minors. PMID:23576811

  8. Model for a flexible motor memory based on a self-active recurrent neural network.

    PubMed

    Boström, Kim Joris; Wagner, Heiko; Prieske, Markus; de Lussanet, Marc

    2013-10-01

    Using recent recurrent network architecture based on the reservoir computing approach, we propose and numerically simulate a model that is focused on the aspects of a flexible motor memory for the storage of elementary movement patterns into the synaptic weights of a neural network, so that the patterns can be retrieved at any time by simple static commands. The resulting motor memory is flexible in that it is capable to continuously modulate the stored patterns. The modulation consists in an approximately linear inter- and extrapolation, generating a large space of possible movements that have not been learned before. A recurrent network of thousand neurons is trained in a manner that corresponds to a realistic exercising scenario, with experimentally measured muscular activations and with kinetic data representing proprioceptive feedback. The network is "self-active" in that it maintains recurrent flow of activation even in the absence of input, a feature that resembles the "resting-state activity" found in the human and animal brain. The model involves the concept of "neural outsourcing" which amounts to the permanent shifting of computational load from higher to lower-level neural structures, which might help to explain why humans are able to execute learned skills in a fluent and flexible manner without the need for attention to the details of the movement.

  9. Model for a flexible motor memory based on a self-active recurrent neural network.

    PubMed

    Boström, Kim Joris; Wagner, Heiko; Prieske, Markus; de Lussanet, Marc

    2013-10-01

    Using recent recurrent network architecture based on the reservoir computing approach, we propose and numerically simulate a model that is focused on the aspects of a flexible motor memory for the storage of elementary movement patterns into the synaptic weights of a neural network, so that the patterns can be retrieved at any time by simple static commands. The resulting motor memory is flexible in that it is capable to continuously modulate the stored patterns. The modulation consists in an approximately linear inter- and extrapolation, generating a large space of possible movements that have not been learned before. A recurrent network of thousand neurons is trained in a manner that corresponds to a realistic exercising scenario, with experimentally measured muscular activations and with kinetic data representing proprioceptive feedback. The network is "self-active" in that it maintains recurrent flow of activation even in the absence of input, a feature that resembles the "resting-state activity" found in the human and animal brain. The model involves the concept of "neural outsourcing" which amounts to the permanent shifting of computational load from higher to lower-level neural structures, which might help to explain why humans are able to execute learned skills in a fluent and flexible manner without the need for attention to the details of the movement. PMID:24120277

  10. Relation of obesity to neural activation in response to food commercials

    PubMed Central

    Yokum, Sonja; Stice, Eric; Harris, Jennifer L.; Brownell, Kelly D.

    2014-01-01

    Adolescents view thousands of food commercials annually, but the neural response to food advertising and its association with obesity is largely unknown. This study is the first to examine how neural response to food commercials differs from other stimuli (e.g. non-food commercials and television show) and to explore how this response may differ by weight status. The blood oxygen level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging activation was measured in 30 adolescents ranging from lean to obese in response to food and non-food commercials imbedded in a television show. Adolescents exhibited greater activation in regions implicated in visual processing (e.g. occipital gyrus), attention (e.g. parietal lobes), cognition (e.g. temporal gyrus and posterior cerebellar lobe), movement (e.g. anterior cerebellar cortex), somatosensory response (e.g. postcentral gyrus) and reward [e.g. orbitofrontal cortex and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC)] during food commercials. Obese participants exhibited less activation during food relative to non-food commercials in neural regions implicated in visual processing (e.g. cuneus), attention (e.g. posterior cerebellar lobe), reward (e.g. ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ACC) and salience detection (e.g. precuneus). Obese participants did exhibit greater activation in a region implicated in semantic control (e.g. medial temporal gyrus). These findings may inform current policy debates regarding the impact of food advertising to minors. PMID:23576811

  11. Neural activity in the parietal eye of a lizard.

    PubMed

    MILLER, W H; WOLBARSHT, M L

    1962-01-26

    Electrical signs of activity in response to illumination of the parietal eye of the American chameleon, Anolis carolinensis, have been investigated. The responses were of two types. Under conditions of direct-coupled amplification, with glass pipette electrodes recording extracellularly from the retinal surface, the response consisted of an increase in negativity maintained throughout prolonged illumination. With capacitance-coupled amplification and metal electrodes, brisk mass discharges of nerve impulses were detected at the onset and cessation of illumination. During illumination a less vigorous maintained discharge was observed.

  12. Working Memory-Related Neural Activity Predicts Future Smoking Relapse

    PubMed Central

    Loughead, James; Wileyto, E Paul; Ruparel, Kosha; Falcone, Mary; Hopson, Ryan; Gur, Ruben; Lerman, Caryn

    2015-01-01

    Brief abstinence from smoking impairs cognition, particularly executive function, and this has a role in relapse to smoking. This study examined whether working memory-related brain activity predicts subsequent smoking relapse above and beyond standard clinical and behavioral measures. Eighty treatment-seeking smokers completed two functional magnetic resonance imaging sessions (smoking satiety vs 24 h abstinence challenge) during performance of a visual N-back task. Brief counseling and a short-term quit attempt followed. Relapse during the first 7 days was biochemically confirmed by the presence of the nicotine metabolite cotinine. Mean percent blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signal change was extracted from a priori regions of interest: bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), medial frontal/cingulate gyrus, posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Signal from these brain regions and additional clinical measures were used to model outcome status, which was then validated with resampling techniques. Relapse to smoking was predicted by increased withdrawal symptoms, decreased left DLPFC and increased PCC BOLD percent signal change (abstinence vs smoking satiety). Receiver operating characteristic analysis demonstrated 81% area under the curve using these predictors, a significant improvement over the model with clinical variables only. The combination of abstinence-induced decreases in left DLPFC activation and reduced suppression of PCC may be a prognostic marker for poor outcome, specifically early smoking relapse. PMID:25469682

  13. Category-based induction from similarity of neural activation.

    PubMed

    Weber, Matthew J; Osherson, Daniel

    2014-03-01

    The idea that similarity might be an engine of inductive inference dates back at least as far as David Hume. However, Hume's thesis is difficult to test without begging the question, since judgments of similarity may be infected by inferential processes. We present a one-parameter model of category-based induction that generates predictions about arbitrary statements of conditional probability over a predicate and a set of items. The prediction is based on the unconditional probabilities and similarities that characterize that predicate and those items. To test Hume's thesis, we collected brain activation from various regions of the ventral visual stream during a categorization task that did not invite comparison of categories. We then calculated the similarity of those activation patterns using a simple measure of vectorwise similarity and supplied those similarities to the model. The model's outputs correlated well with subjects' judgments of conditional probability. Our results represent a promising first step toward confirming Hume's thesis; similarity, assessed without reference to induction, may well drive inductive inference.

  14. Deep neural nets as a method for quantitative structure-activity relationships.

    PubMed

    Ma, Junshui; Sheridan, Robert P; Liaw, Andy; Dahl, George E; Svetnik, Vladimir

    2015-02-23

    Neural networks were widely used for quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) in the 1990s. Because of various practical issues (e.g., slow on large problems, difficult to train, prone to overfitting, etc.), they were superseded by more robust methods like support vector machine (SVM) and random forest (RF), which arose in the early 2000s. The last 10 years has witnessed a revival of neural networks in the machine learning community thanks to new methods for preventing overfitting, more efficient training algorithms, and advancements in computer hardware. In particular, deep neural nets (DNNs), i.e. neural nets with more than one hidden layer, have found great successes in many applications, such as computer vision and natural language processing. Here we show that DNNs can routinely make better prospective predictions than RF on a set of large diverse QSAR data sets that are taken from Merck's drug discovery effort. The number of adjustable parameters needed for DNNs is fairly large, but our results show that it is not necessary to optimize them for individual data sets, and a single set of recommended parameters can achieve better performance than RF for most of the data sets we studied. The usefulness of the parameters is demonstrated on additional data sets not used in the calibration. Although training DNNs is still computationally intensive, using graphical processing units (GPUs) can make this issue manageable.

  15. Deep neural nets as a method for quantitative structure-activity relationships.

    PubMed

    Ma, Junshui; Sheridan, Robert P; Liaw, Andy; Dahl, George E; Svetnik, Vladimir

    2015-02-23

    Neural networks were widely used for quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) in the 1990s. Because of various practical issues (e.g., slow on large problems, difficult to train, prone to overfitting, etc.), they were superseded by more robust methods like support vector machine (SVM) and random forest (RF), which arose in the early 2000s. The last 10 years has witnessed a revival of neural networks in the machine learning community thanks to new methods for preventing overfitting, more efficient training algorithms, and advancements in computer hardware. In particular, deep neural nets (DNNs), i.e. neural nets with more than one hidden layer, have found great successes in many applications, such as computer vision and natural language processing. Here we show that DNNs can routinely make better prospective predictions than RF on a set of large diverse QSAR data sets that are taken from Merck's drug discovery effort. The number of adjustable parameters needed for DNNs is fairly large, but our results show that it is not necessary to optimize them for individual data sets, and a single set of recommended parameters can achieve better performance than RF for most of the data sets we studied. The usefulness of the parameters is demonstrated on additional data sets not used in the calibration. Although training DNNs is still computationally intensive, using graphical processing units (GPUs) can make this issue manageable. PMID:25635324

  16. Dopamine-induced dissociation of BOLD and neural activity in macaque visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Zaldivar, Daniel; Rauch, Alexander; Whittingstall, Kevin; Logothetis, Nikos K; Goense, Jozien

    2014-12-01

    Neuromodulators determine how neural circuits process information during cognitive states such as wakefulness, attention, learning, and memory. fMRI can provide insight into their function and dynamics, but their exact effect on BOLD responses remains unclear, limiting our ability to interpret the effects of changes in behavioral state using fMRI. Here, we investigated the effects of dopamine (DA) injections on neural responses and haemodynamic signals in macaque primary visual cortex (V1) using fMRI (7T) and intracortical electrophysiology. Aside from DA's involvement in diseases such as Parkinson's and schizophrenia, it also plays a role in visual perception. We mimicked DAergic neuromodulation by systemic injection of L-DOPA and Carbidopa (LDC) or by local application of DA in V1 and found that systemic application of LDC increased the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and amplitude of the visually evoked neural responses in V1. However, visually induced BOLD responses decreased, whereas cerebral blood flow (CBF) responses increased. This dissociation of BOLD and CBF suggests that dopamine increases energy metabolism by a disproportionate amount relative to the CBF response, causing the reduced BOLD response. Local application of DA in V1 had no effect on neural activity, suggesting that the dopaminergic effects are mediated by long-range interactions. The combination of BOLD-based and CBF-based fMRI can provide a signature of dopaminergic neuromodulation, indicating that the application of multimodal methods can improve our ability to distinguish sensory processing from neuromodulatory effects. PMID:25456449

  17. Activities affecting surface water resources: A general overview

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-01-01

    In November 1987, P.E.I. signed a federal/provincial work-sharing arrangement on water resource management focusing on groundwater pollution, surface water degradation and estuarine eutrophication. The surface water program was designed to identify current surface water uses and users within 12 major watersheds across the Island containing 26 individual rivers, as well as problems arising due to practices that degrade the quality of surface water and restricts its value to other user groups. This report presents a general overview of the program, covering the general characteristics of the Island; operations in agriculture, fish and wildlife, forestry, recreation, fisheries, and industry; alterations of natural features of waterways; wetlands; additional watershed activities such as hydrometric stations and subdivision development; and activities affecting surface water resources such as sedimentation sources, pollution point sources and instream obstructions.

  18. Atypical Neural Activity in Males But Not Females with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Kirkovski, Melissa; Enticott, Peter G; Hughes, Matthew E; Rossell, Susan L; Fitzgerald, Paul B

    2016-03-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and the right temporo-parietal junction (rTPj) are highly involved in social understanding, a core area of impairment in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). We used fMRI to investigate sex differences in the neural correlates of social understanding in 27 high-functioning adults with ASD and 23 matched controls. There were no differences in neural activity in the mPFC or rTPj between groups during social processing. Whole brain analysis revealed decreased activity in the posterior superior temporal sulcus in males with ASD compared to control males while processing social information. This pattern was not observed in the female sub-sample. The current study indicates that sex mediates the neurobiology of ASD, particularly with respect to processing social information. PMID:26520145

  19. Thermal dependence of neural activity in the hamster hippocampal slice preparation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horowitz, J. M.; Thomas, M. P.; Eckerman, P.

    1987-01-01

    1. Neural activity was recorded in an in vitro hamster hippocampal slice preparation while the temperature of the Ringer's solution bathing in the slice was controlled at selected levels. 2. The amplitude of the population spike (action potentials from a group of pyramidal cells) was measured as bath temperature was lowered from 35 degrees C to temperatures where a response could not be evoked. 3. Plots of population spike amplitude versus temperature have bell-shaped curves. The population spikes increased in amplitude as temperature was lowered from 35 degrees C, reached a peak amplitude between 25 and 20 degrees C, and then decreased until a response could not be evoked when temperature was further lowered. 4. These in vitro results obtained in the slice preparation are related to in vivo hippocampal studies. Results are interpreted as consistent with the proposal reviewed here that neural activity in the hippocampus plays a role at specific stages of entrance into and arousal from hibernation.

  20. Association between vasovagal hypotension and low sympathetic neural activity during presyncope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooke, William H.; Convertino, Victor A.

    2002-01-01

    Recent studies suggest that an underlying mechanism for susceptibility of patients and astronauts to presyncope includes hypoadrenergic responses to orthostatic stress. However, data used to reach this conclusion are open to various interpretations. In this report, maintenance of sympathetic neural activity (MSNA; peroneal nerve microneurography) during -60 mmHg lower body negative pressure (LBNP) was associated with maintenance of orthostatic tolerance, and disappearance of MSNA was associated with hypotension and pre-syncope. However, MSNA was substantially higher during progressive increases of negative pressure in the presyncopal subject, compared to the non-presyncopal subjects. The data from this case report question the notion that orthostatic hypotension occurs due to inadequate sympathetic neural activation during orthostatic stress in apparently normal, healthy subjects.

  1. Mutual information and self-control of a fully-connected low-activity neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bollé, D.; Carreta, D. Dominguez

    2000-11-01

    A self-control mechanism for the dynamics of a three-state fully connected neural network is studied through the introduction of a time-dependent threshold. The self-adapting threshold is a function of both the neural and the pattern activity in the network. The time evolution of the order parameters is obtained on the basis of a recently developed dynamical recursive scheme. In the limit of low activity the mutual information is shown to be the relevant parameter in order to determine the retrieval quality. Due to self-control an improvement of this mutual information content as well as an increase of the storage capacity and an enlargement of the basins of attraction are found. These results are compared with numerical simulations.

  2. Prediction of Spatiotemporal Patterns of Neural Activity from Pairwise Correlations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marre, O.; El Boustani, S.; Frégnac, Y.; Destexhe, A.

    2009-04-01

    We designed a model-based analysis to predict the occurrence of population patterns in distributed spiking activity. Using a maximum entropy principle with a Markovian assumption, we obtain a model that accounts for both spatial and temporal pairwise correlations among neurons. This model is tested on data generated with a Glauber spin-glass system and is shown to correctly predict the occurrence probabilities of spatiotemporal patterns significantly better than Ising models only based on spatial correlations. This increase of predictability was also observed on experimental data recorded in parietal cortex during slow-wave sleep. This approach can also be used to generate surrogates that reproduce the spatial and temporal correlations of a given data set.

  3. Prediction of Spatiotemporal Patterns of Neural Activity from Pairwise Correlations

    SciTech Connect

    Marre, O.; El Boustani, S.; Fregnac, Y.; Destexhe, A.

    2009-04-03

    We designed a model-based analysis to predict the occurrence of population patterns in distributed spiking activity. Using a maximum entropy principle with a Markovian assumption, we obtain a model that accounts for both spatial and temporal pairwise correlations among neurons. This model is tested on data generated with a Glauber spin-glass system and is shown to correctly predict the occurrence probabilities of spatiotemporal patterns significantly better than Ising models only based on spatial correlations. This increase of predictability was also observed on experimental data recorded in parietal cortex during slow-wave sleep. This approach can also be used to generate surrogates that reproduce the spatial and temporal correlations of a given data set.

  4. Optogenetic manipulation of neural activity in freely moving Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Leifer, Andrew M; Fang-Yen, Christopher; Gershow, Marc; Alkema, Mark J; Samuel, Aravinthan D T

    2011-01-01

    We present an optogenetic illumination system capable of real-time light delivery with high spatial resolution to specified targets in freely moving Caenorhabditis elegans. A tracking microscope records the motion of an unrestrained worm expressing Channelrhodopsin-2 or Halorhodopsin/NpHR in specific cell types. Image processing software analyzes the worm’s position within each video frame, rapidly estimates the locations of targeted cells, and instructs a digital micromirror device to illuminate targeted cells with laser light of the appropriate wavelengths to stimulate or inhibit activity. Since each cell in an unrestrained worm is a rapidly moving target, our system operates at high speed (~50 frames per second) to provide high spatial resolution (~30 µm). To demonstrate the accuracy, flexibility, and utility of our system, we present optogenetic analyses of the worm motor circuit, egg-laying circuit, and mechanosensory circuits that were not possible with previous methods. PMID:21240279

  5. Individual differences in sensitivity to reward and punishment and neural activity during reward and avoidance learning.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sang Hee; Yoon, HeungSik; Kim, Hackjin; Hamann, Stephan

    2015-09-01

    In this functional neuroimaging study, we investigated neural activations during the process of learning to gain monetary rewards and to avoid monetary loss, and how these activations are modulated by individual differences in reward and punishment sensitivity. Healthy young volunteers performed a reinforcement learning task where they chose one of two fractal stimuli associated with monetary gain (reward trials) or avoidance of monetary loss (avoidance trials). Trait sensitivity to reward and punishment was assessed using the behavioral inhibition/activation scales (BIS/BAS). Functional neuroimaging results showed activation of the striatum during the anticipation and reception periods of reward trials. During avoidance trials, activation of the dorsal striatum and prefrontal regions was found. As expected, individual differences in reward sensitivity were positively associated with activation in the left and right ventral striatum during reward reception. Individual differences in sensitivity to punishment were negatively associated with activation in the left dorsal striatum during avoidance anticipation and also with activation in the right lateral orbitofrontal cortex during receiving monetary loss. These results suggest that learning to attain reward and learning to avoid loss are dependent on separable sets of neural regions whose activity is modulated by trait sensitivity to reward or punishment.

  6. Human intracranial high-frequency activity during memory processing: neural oscillations or stochastic volatility?

    PubMed Central

    Burke, John F.; Ramayya, Ashwin G.; Kahana, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Intracranial high-frequency activity (HFA), which refers to fast fluctuations in electrophysiological recordings, increases during memory processing. Two views have emerged to explain this effect: (1) HFA reflects a synchronous signal, related to underlying gamma oscillations, that plays a mechanistic role in human memory and (2) HFA reflects an asynchronous signal that is a nonspecific marker of brain activation. Here, we review recent data supporting each of these views and conclude that HFA during memory processing is more consistent with an asynchronous signal. Memory-related HFA is therefore best conceptualized as a biomarker of neural activation that can functionally map memory with unprecedented spatial and temporal precision. PMID:25279772

  7. Brain activation during human navigation: gender-different neural networks as substrate of performance.

    PubMed

    Grön, G; Wunderlich, A P; Spitzer, M; Tomczak, R; Riepe, M W

    2000-04-01

    Visuospatial navigation in animals and human subjects is generally studied using maze exploration. We used functional MRI to observe brain activation in male and female subjects as they searched for the way out of a complex, three-dimensional, virtual-reality maze. Navigation activated the medial occipital gyri, lateral and medial parietal regions, posterior cingulate and parahippocampal gyri as well as the right hippocampus proper. Gender-specific group analysis revealed distinct activation of the left hippocampus in males, whereas females consistently recruited right parietal and right prefrontal cortex. Thus we demonstrate a neural substrate of well established human gender differences in spatial-cognition performance.

  8. Dynamics of modularity of neural activity in the brain during development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deem, Michael; Chen, Man

    2014-03-01

    Theory suggests that more modular systems can have better response functions at short times. This theory suggests that greater cognitive performance may be achieved for more modular neural activity, and that modularity of neural activity may, therefore, likely increase with development in children. We study the relationship between age and modularity of brain neural activity in developing children. The value of modularity calculated from fMRI data is observed to increase during childhood development and peak in young adulthood. We interpret these results as evidence of selection for plasticity in the cognitive function of the human brain. We present a model to illustrate how modularity can provide greater cognitive performance at short times and enhance fast, low-level, automatic cognitive processes. Conversely, high-level, effortful, conscious cognitive processes may not benefit from modularity. We use quasispecies theory to predict how the average modularity evolves with age, given a fitness function extracted from the model. We suggest further experiments exploring the effect of modularity on cognitive performance and suggest that modularity may be a potential biomarker for injury, rehabilitation, or disease.

  9. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Imaging Neural Activity in the Human Brain: The Annual Progress

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Shengyong; Li, Xiaoli

    2012-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is recently developed and applied to measure the hemodynamic response related to neural activity. The fMRI can not only noninvasively record brain signals without risks of ionising radiation inherent in other scanning methods, such as CT or PET scans, but also record signal from all regions of the brain, unlike EEG/MEG which are biased towards the cortical surface. This paper introduces the fundamental principles and summarizes the research progress of the last year for imaging neural activity in the human brain. Aims of functional analysis of neural activity from fMRI include biological findings, functional connectivity, vision and hearing research, emotional research, neurosurgical planning, pain management, and many others. Besides formulations and basic processing methods, models and strategies of processing technology are introduced, including general linear model, nonlinear model, generative model, spatial pattern analysis, statistical analysis, correlation analysis, and multimodal combination. This paper provides readers the most recent representative contributions in the area. PMID:22319550

  10. Functional magnetic resonance imaging for imaging neural activity in the human brain: the annual progress.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shengyong; Li, Xiaoli

    2012-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is recently developed and applied to measure the hemodynamic response related to neural activity. The fMRI can not only noninvasively record brain signals without risks of ionising radiation inherent in other scanning methods, such as CT or PET scans, but also record signal from all regions of the brain, unlike EEG/MEG which are biased towards the cortical surface. This paper introduces the fundamental principles and summarizes the research progress of the last year for imaging neural activity in the human brain. Aims of functional analysis of neural activity from fMRI include biological findings, functional connectivity, vision and hearing research, emotional research, neurosurgical planning, pain management, and many others. Besides formulations and basic processing methods, models and strategies of processing technology are introduced, including general linear model, nonlinear model, generative model, spatial pattern analysis, statistical analysis, correlation analysis, and multimodal combination. This paper provides readers the most recent representative contributions in the area.

  11. A multichannel integrated circuit for electrical recording of neural activity, with independent channel programmability.

    PubMed

    Mora Lopez, Carolina; Prodanov, Dimiter; Braeken, Dries; Gligorijevic, Ivan; Eberle, Wolfgang; Bartic, Carmen; Puers, Robert; Gielen, Georges

    2012-04-01

    Since a few decades, micro-fabricated neural probes are being used, together with microelectronic interfaces, to get more insight in the activity of neuronal networks. The need for higher temporal and spatial recording resolutions imposes new challenges on the design of integrated neural interfaces with respect to power consumption, data handling and versatility. In this paper, we present an integrated acquisition system for in vitro and in vivo recording of neural activity. The ASIC consists of 16 low-noise, fully-differential input channels with independent programmability of its amplification (from 100 to 6000 V/V) and filtering (1-6000 Hz range) capabilities. Each channel is AC-coupled and implements a fourth-order band-pass filter in order to steeply attenuate out-of-band noise and DC input offsets. The system achieves an input-referred noise density of 37 nV/√Hz, a NEF of 5.1, a CMRR > 60 dB, a THD < 1% and a sampling rate of 30 kS/s per channel, while consuming a maximum of 70 μA per channel from a single 3.3 V. The ASIC was implemented in a 0.35 μm CMOS technology and has a total area of 5.6 × 4.5 mm². The recording system was successfully validated in in vitro and in vivo experiments, achieving simultaneous multichannel recordings of cell activity with satisfactory signal-to-noise ratios.

  12. Astrocyte glycogen as an emergency fuel under conditions of glucose deprivation or intense neural activity.

    PubMed

    Brown, Angus M; Ransom, Bruce R

    2015-02-01

    Energy metabolism in the brain is a complex process that is incompletely understood. Although glucose is agreed as the main energy support of the brain, the role of glucose is not clear, which has led to controversies that can be summarized as follows: the fate of glucose, once it enters the brain is unclear. It is not known the form in which glucose enters the cells (neurons and glia) within the brain, nor the degree of metabolic shuttling of glucose derived metabolites between cells, with a key limitation in our knowledge being the extent of oxidative metabolism, and how increased tissue activity alters this. Glycogen is present within the brain and is derived from glucose. Glycogen is stored in astrocytes and acts to provide short-term delivery of substrates to neural elements, although it may also contribute an important component to astrocyte metabolism. The roles played by glycogen awaits further study, but to date its most important role is in supporting neural elements during increased firing activity, where signaling molecules, proposed to be elevated interstitial K(+), indicative of elevated neural firing rates, activate glycogen phosphorylase leading to increased production of glycogen derived substrate.

  13. Does motion-related brain functional connectivity reflect both artifacts and genuine neural activity?

    PubMed

    Pujol, Jesus; Macià, Dídac; Blanco-Hinojo, Laura; Martínez-Vilavella, Gerard; Sunyer, Jordi; de la Torre, Rafael; Caixàs, Assumpta; Martín-Santos, Rocío; Deus, Joan; Harrison, Ben J

    2014-11-01

    Imaging research on functional connectivity is uniquely contributing to characterize the functional organization of the human brain. Functional connectivity measurements, however, may be significantly influenced by head motion that occurs during image acquisition. The identification of how motion influences such measurements is therefore highly relevant to the interpretation of a study's results. We have mapped the effect of head motion on functional connectivity in six different populations representing a wide range of potential influences of motion on functional connectivity. Group-level voxel-wise maps of the correlation between a summary head motion measurement and functional connectivity degree were estimated in 80 young adults, 71 children, 53 older adults, 20 patients with Down syndrome, 24 with Prader-Willi syndrome and 20 with Williams syndrome. In highly compliant young adults, motion correlated with functional connectivity measurements showing a system-specific anatomy involving the sensorimotor cortex, visual areas and default mode network. Further characterization was strongly indicative of these changes expressing genuine neural activity related to motion, as opposed to pure motion artifact. In the populations with larger head motion, results were more indicative of widespread artifacts, but showing notably distinct spatial distribution patterns. Group-level regression of motion effects was efficient in removing both generalized changes and changes putatively related to neural activity. Overall, this study endorses a relatively simple approach for mapping distinct effects of head motion on functional connectivity. Importantly, our findings support the intriguing hypothesis that a component of motion-related changes may reflect system-specific neural activity.

  14. Influence of SLC6A3 and COMT Variation on Neural Activation During Response Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Congdon, Eliza; Constable, R. Todd; Lesch, Klaus Peter; Canli, Turhan

    2009-01-01

    There is evidence concerning the neural and genetic correlates of inhibitory control, but there have been limited attempts to combine this information. This study tested the hypothesis that two dopaminergic polymorphisms, SLC6A3 and COMT, influence neural activation during response inhibition. Healthy adults were genotyped for these polymorphisms and performed a measure of response inhibition while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Results support the role of key frontostriatal regions underlying response inhibition. Furthermore, results support a significant influence of SLC6A3 and COMT variants on neural activity during inhibition, with greater activation during inhibition in carriers of the SLC6A3 9-allele or the COMT met-allele as compared to carriers of the SLC6A3 10/10 genotype or the COMT val/val genotype. These results add to a growing literature suggesting that inhibitory control is sensitive to variation in dopamine function, and suggest that this variation may be detectable at the level of individuals’ genotypes. PMID:19482231

  15. Altered spontaneous neural activity in the occipital face area reflects behavioral deficits in developmental prosopagnosia.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yuanfang; Li, Jingguang; Liu, Xiqin; Song, Yiying; Wang, Ruosi; Yang, Zetian; Liu, Jia

    2016-08-01

    Individuals with developmental prosopagnosia (DP) exhibit severe difficulties in recognizing faces and to a lesser extent, also exhibit difficulties in recognizing non-face objects. We used fMRI to investigate whether these behavioral deficits could be accounted for by altered spontaneous neural activity. Two aspects of spontaneous neural activity were measured: the intensity of neural activity in a voxel indexed by the fractional amplitude of spontaneous low-frequency fluctuations (fALFF), and the connectivity of a voxel to neighboring voxels indexed by regional homogeneity (ReHo). Compared with normal adults, both the fALFF and ReHo values within the right occipital face area (rOFA) were significantly reduced in DP subjects. Follow-up studies on the normal adults revealed that these two measures indicated further functional division of labor within the rOFA. The fALFF in the rOFA was positively correlated with behavioral performance in recognition of non-face objects, whereas ReHo in the rOFA was positively correlated with processing of faces. When considered together, the altered fALFF and ReHo within the same region (rOFA) may account for the comorbid deficits in both face and object recognition in DPs, whereas the functional division of labor in these two measures helps to explain the relative independency of deficits in face recognition and object recognition in DP. PMID:27475965

  16. Amygdala atrophy affects emotion-related activity in face-responsive regions in frontotemporal degeneration.

    PubMed

    De Winter, François-Laurent; Van den Stock, Jan; de Gelder, Beatrice; Peeters, Ronald; Jastorff, Jan; Sunaert, Stefan; Vanduffel, Wim; Vandenberghe, Rik; Vandenbulcke, Mathieu

    2016-09-01

    In the healthy brain, modulatory influences from the amygdala commonly explain enhanced activation in face-responsive areas by emotional facial expressions relative to neutral expressions. In the behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) facial emotion recognition is impaired and has been associated with atrophy of the amygdala. By combining structural and functional MRI in 19 patients with bvFTD and 20 controls we investigated the neural effects of emotion in face-responsive cortex and its relationship with amygdalar gray matter (GM) volume in neurodegeneration. Voxel-based morphometry revealed decreased GM volume in anterior medio-temporal regions including amygdala in patients compared to controls. During fMRI, we presented dynamic facial expressions (fear and chewing) and their spatiotemporally scrambled versions. We found enhanced activation for fearful compared to neutral faces in ventral temporal cortex and superior temporal sulcus in controls, but not in patients. In the bvFTD group left amygdalar GM volume correlated positively with emotion-related activity in left fusiform face area (FFA). This correlation was amygdala-specific and driven by GM in superficial and basolateral (BLA) subnuclei, consistent with reported amygdalar-cortical networks. The data suggests that anterior medio-temporal atrophy in bvFTD affects emotion processing in distant posterior areas. PMID:27389802

  17. Accelerometer signal-based human activity recognition using augmented autoregressive model coefficients and artificial neural nets.

    PubMed

    Khan, A M; Lee, Y K; Kim, T S

    2008-01-01

    Automatic recognition of human activities is one of the important and challenging research areas in proactive and ubiquitous computing. In this work, we present some preliminary results of recognizing human activities using augmented features extracted from the activity signals measured using a single triaxial accelerometer sensor and artificial neural nets. The features include autoregressive (AR) modeling coefficients of activity signals, signal magnitude areas (SMA), and title angles (TA). We have recognized four human activities using AR coefficients (ARC) only, ARC with SMA, and ARC with SMA and TA. With the last augmented features, we have achieved the recognition rate above 99% for all four activities including lying, standing, walking, and running. With our proposed technique, real time recognition of some human activities is possible.

  18. Decoding of the sound frequency from the steady-state neural activities in rat auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Shiramatsu, Tomoyo I; Noda, Takahiro; Kanzaki, Ryohei; Takahashi, Hirokazu

    2013-01-01

    In the auditory cortex, onset activities have been extensively investigated as a cortical representation of sound information such as sound frequency. Yet, less attention has been paid to date to steady-state activities following the onset activities. In this study, we used machine learning to investigate whether steady-state activities in the presence of continuous sounds represent the sound frequency. Sparse Logistic Regression (SLR) decoded the sound frequency from band specific power or phase locking value (PLV) of local field potentials (LFP) from the fourth layer of the auditory cortex of anesthetized rats. Consequently, we found that SLR was able to decode the sound frequency from steady-state neural activities as well as onset activities. This result demonstrates that the steady-state activities contain information about the sound such as sound frequency.

  19. Noise influence on spike activation in a Hindmarsh-Rose small-world neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhe, Sun; Micheletto, Ruggero

    2016-07-01

    We studied the role of noise in neural networks, especially focusing on its relation to the propagation of spike activity in a small sized system. We set up a source of information using a single neuron that is constantly spiking. This element called initiator x o feeds spikes to the rest of the network that is initially quiescent and subsequently reacts with vigorous spiking after a transitional period of time. We found that noise quickly suppresses the initiator’s influence and favors spontaneous spike activity and, using a decibel representation of noise intensity, we established a linear relationship between noise amplitude and the interval from the initiator’s first spike and the rest of the network activation. We studied the same process with networks of different sizes (number of neurons) and found that the initiator x o has a measurable influence on small networks, but as the network grows in size, spontaneous spiking emerges disrupting its effects on networks of more than about N = 100 neurons. This suggests that the mechanism of internal noise generation allows information transmission within a small neural neighborhood, but decays for bigger network domains. We also analyzed the Fourier spectrum of the whole network membrane potential and verified that noise provokes the reduction of main θ and α peaks before transitioning into chaotic spiking. However, network size does not reproduce a similar phenomena; instead we recorded a reduction in peaks’ amplitude, a better sharpness and definition of Fourier peaks, but not the evident degeneration to chaos observed with increasing external noise. This work aims to contribute to the understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of propagation of spontaneous spiking in neural networks and gives a quantitative assessment of how noise can be used to control and modulate this phenomenon in Hindmarsh-Rose (H-R) neural networks.

  20. Noise influence on spike activation in a Hindmarsh–Rose small-world neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhe, Sun; Micheletto, Ruggero

    2016-07-01

    We studied the role of noise in neural networks, especially focusing on its relation to the propagation of spike activity in a small sized system. We set up a source of information using a single neuron that is constantly spiking. This element called initiator x o feeds spikes to the rest of the network that is initially quiescent and subsequently reacts with vigorous spiking after a transitional period of time. We found that noise quickly suppresses the initiator’s influence and favors spontaneous spike activity and, using a decibel representation of noise intensity, we established a linear relationship between noise amplitude and the interval from the initiator’s first spike and the rest of the network activation. We studied the same process with networks of different sizes (number of neurons) and found that the initiator x o has a measurable influence on small networks, but as the network grows in size, spontaneous spiking emerges disrupting its effects on networks of more than about N = 100 neurons. This suggests that the mechanism of internal noise generation allows information transmission within a small neural neighborhood, but decays for bigger network domains. We also analyzed the Fourier spectrum of the whole network membrane potential and verified that noise provokes the reduction of main θ and α peaks before transitioning into chaotic spiking. However, network size does not reproduce a similar phenomena; instead we recorded a reduction in peaks’ amplitude, a better sharpness and definition of Fourier peaks, but not the evident degeneration to chaos observed with increasing external noise. This work aims to contribute to the understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of propagation of spontaneous spiking in neural networks and gives a quantitative assessment of how noise can be used to control and modulate this phenomenon in Hindmarsh‑Rose (H‑R) neural networks.

  1. Associating spontaneous with evoked activity in a neural mass model of visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Nguyen Trong, Manh; Bojak, Ingo; Knösche, Thomas R

    2013-02-01

    Spontaneous activity of the brain at rest frequently has been considered a mere backdrop to the salient activity evoked by external stimuli or tasks. However, the resting state of the brain consumes most of its energy budget, which suggests a far more important role. An intriguing hint comes from experimental observations of spontaneous activity patterns, which closely resemble those evoked by visual stimulation with oriented gratings, except that cortex appeared to cycle between different orientation maps. Moreover, patterns similar to those evoked by the behaviorally most relevant horizontal and vertical orientations occurred more often than those corresponding to oblique angles. We hypothesize that this kind of spontaneous activity develops at least to some degree autonomously, providing a dynamical reservoir of cortical states, which are then associated with visual stimuli through learning. To test this hypothesis, we use a biologically inspired neural mass model to simulate a patch of cat visual cortex. Spontaneous transitions between orientation states were induced by modest modifications of the neural connectivity, establishing a stable heteroclinic channel. Significantly, the experimentally observed greater frequency of states representing the behaviorally important horizontal and vertical orientations emerged spontaneously from these simulations. We then applied bar-shaped inputs to the model cortex and used Hebbian learning rules to modify the corresponding synaptic strengths. After unsupervised learning, different bar inputs reliably and exclusively evoked their associated orientation state; whereas in the absence of input, the model cortex resumed its spontaneous cycling. We conclude that the experimentally observed similarities between spontaneous and evoked activity in visual cortex can be explained as the outcome of a learning process that associates external stimuli with a preexisting reservoir of autonomous neural activity states. Our findings

  2. Neural activity patterns evoked by a spouse’s incongruent emotional reactions when recalling marriage-relevant experiences

    PubMed Central

    Petrican, Raluca; Rosenbaum, R. Shayna; Grady, Cheryl

    2016-01-01

    Resonance with the inner states of another social actor is regarded as a hallmark of emotional closeness. Nevertheless, sensitivity to potential incongruities between one’s own and an intimate partner’s subjective experience is reportedly also important for close relationship quality. Here, we tested whether perceivers show greater neurobehavioural responsiveness to a spouse’s positive (rather than negative) context-incongruent emotions, and whether this effect is influenced by the perceiver’s satisfaction with the relationship. Thus, we used fMRI to scan older long-term married female perceivers while they judged either their spouse’s or a stranger’s affect, based on incongruent nonverbal and verbal cues. The verbal cues were selected to evoke strongly polarized affective responses. Higher perceiver marital satisfaction predicted greater neural processing of the spouse’s (rather than the strangers) nonverbal cues. Nevertheless, across all perceivers, greater neural processing of a spouse’s (rather than a stranger’s) nonverbal behavior was reliably observed only when the behavior was positive and the context was negative. The spouse’s positive (rather than negative) nonverbal behaviour evoked greater activity in putative mirror neuron areas, such as the bilateral IPL. This effect was related to a stronger inhibitory influence of cognitive control areas on mirror system activity in response to a spouse’s negative nonverbal cues, an effect that strengthened with increasing perceiver marital satisfaction. Our valence-asymmetric findings imply that neurobehavioral responsiveness to a close other’s emotions may depend, at least partly, on cognitive control resources, which are used to support the perceiver’s interpersonal goals (here, goals that are relevant to relationship stability). PMID:26219536

  3. The Synapse Project: Engagement in mentally challenging activities enhances neural efficiency

    PubMed Central

    McDonough, Ian M.; Haber, Sara; Bischof, Gérard N.; Park, Denise C.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Correlational and limited experimental evidence suggests that an engaged lifestyle is associated with the maintenance of cognitive vitality in old age. However, the mechanisms underlying these engagement effects are poorly understood. We hypothesized that mental effort underlies engagement effects and used fMRI to examine the impact of high-challenge activities (digital photography and quilting) compared with low-challenge activities (socializing or performing low-challenge cognitive tasks) on neural function at pretest, posttest, and one year after the engagement program. Methods: In the scanner, participants performed a semantic-classification task with two levels of difficulty to assess the modulation of brain activity in response to task demands. Results: The High-Challenge group, but not the Low-Challenge group, showed increased modulation of brain activity in medial frontal, lateral temporal, and parietal cortex—regions associated with attention and semantic processing—some of which were maintained a year later. This increased modulation stemmed from decreases in brain activity during the easy condition for the High-Challenge group and was associated with time committed to the program, age, and cognition. Conclusions: Sustained engagement in cognitively demanding activities facilitated cognition by increasing neural efficiency. Mentally-challenging activities may be neuroprotective and an important element to maintaining a healthy brain into late adulthood. PMID:26484698

  4. Glutamatergic activation of anterior cingulate cortex mediates the affective component of visceral pain memory in rats.

    PubMed

    Yan, Ni; Cao, Bing; Xu, Jiahe; Hao, Chun; Zhang, Xu; Li, Ying

    2012-01-01

    Studies of both humans and animals suggest that anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is important for processing pain perception. We identified that perigenul ACC (pACC) sensitization and enhanced visceral pain in a visceral hypersensitive rat in previous studies. Pain contains both sensory and affective dimensions. Teasing apart the mechanisms that control the neural pathways mediating pain affect and sensation in nociceptive behavioral response is a challenge. In this study, using a rodent visceral pain assay that combines the colorectal distension (CRD)-induced visceromotor response (VMR) with the conditioning place avoidance (CPA), we measured a learned behavior that directly reflects the affective component of visceral pain. When CRD was paired with a distinct environment context, the rats spent significantly less time in this compartment on the post-conditioning test days as compared with the pre-conditioning day. Effects were lasted for 14 days. Bilateral pACC lesion significantly reduced CPA scores without reducing acute visceral pain behaviors (CRD-induced VMR). Bilateral administration of non-NMDA receptor antagonist CNQX or NMDA receptor antagonist AP5 into the pACC decreased the CPA scores. AP5 or CNQX at dose of 400 mM produced about 70% inhibition of CRD-CPA in the day 1, 4 and 7, and completely abolished the CPA in the day 14 after conditioning. We concluded that neurons in the pACC are necessary for the "aversiveness" of visceral nociceptor stimulation. pACC activation is critical for the memory processing involved in long-term negative affective state and prediction of aversive stimuli by contextual cue.

  5. Long-range neural activity evoked by premotor cortex stimulation: a TMS/EEG co-registration study

    PubMed Central

    Zanon, Marco; Battaglini, Piero P.; Jarmolowska, Joanna; Pizzolato, Gilberto; Busan, Pierpaolo

    2013-01-01

    The premotor cortex is one of the fundamental structures composing the neural networks of the human brain. It is implicated in many behaviors and cognitive tasks, ranging from movement to attention and eye-related activity. Therefore, neural circuits that are related to premotor cortex have been studied to clarify their connectivity and/or role in different tasks. In the present work, we aimed to investigate the propagation of the neural activity evoked in the dorsal premotor cortex using transcranial magnetic stimulation/electroencephalography (TMS/EEG). Toward this end, interest was focused on the neural dynamics elicited in long-ranging temporal and spatial networks. Twelve healthy volunteers underwent a single-pulse TMS protocol in a resting condition with eyes closed, and the evoked activity, measured by EEG, was compared to a sham condition in a time window ranging from 45 ms to about 200 ms after TMS. Spatial and temporal investigations were carried out with sLORETA. TMS was found to induce propagation of neural activity mainly in the contralateral sensorimotor and frontal cortices, at about 130 ms after delivery of the stimulus. Different types of analyses showed propagated activity also in posterior, mainly visual, regions, in a time window between 70 and 130 ms. Finally, a likely “rebounding” activation of the sensorimotor and frontal regions, was observed in various time ranges. Taken together, the present findings further characterize the neural circuits that are driven by dorsal premotor cortex activation in healthy humans. PMID:24324426

  6. Altered resting-state activity in seasonal affective disorder.

    PubMed

    Abou Elseoud, Ahmed; Nissilä, Juuso; Liettu, Anu; Remes, Jukka; Jokelainen, Jari; Takala, Timo; Aunio, Antti; Starck, Tuomo; Nikkinen, Juha; Koponen, Hannu; Zang, Yu-Feng; Tervonen, Osmo; Timonen, Markku; Kiviniemi, Vesa

    2014-01-01

    At present, our knowledge about seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is based mainly up on clinical symptoms, epidemiology, behavioral characteristics and light therapy. Recently developed measures of resting-state functional brain activity might provide neurobiological markers of brain disorders. Studying functional brain activity in SAD could enhance our understanding of its nature and possible treatment strategies. Functional network connectivity (measured using ICA-dual regression), and amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) were measured in 45 antidepressant-free patients (39.78 ± 10.64, 30 ♀, 15 ♂) diagnosed with SAD and compared with age-, gender- and ethnicity-matched healthy controls (HCs) using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. After correcting for Type 1 error at high model orders (inter-RSN correction), SAD patients showed significantly increased functional connectivity in 11 of the 47 identified RSNs. Increased functional connectivity involved RSNs such as visual, sensorimotor, and attentional networks. Moreover, our results revealed that SAD patients compared with HCs showed significant higher ALFF in the visual and right sensorimotor cortex. Abnormally altered functional activity detected in SAD supports previously reported attentional and psychomotor symptoms in patients suffering from SAD. Further studies, particularly under task conditions, are needed in order to specifically investigate cognitive deficits in SAD.

  7. A current model of neural circuitry active in forming mental images

    PubMed Central

    Brodziak, Andrzej

    2013-01-01

    My aim here is to formulate a compact, intuitively understandable model of neural circuits active in imagination that would be consistent with the current state of knowledge, but that would be simple enough to be able to use for teaching. I argue that such a model should be based on the recent idea of “concept neurons” and circuits of 2 separate loops necessary for recalling mental images and consolidation of memory traces of long-term memory. This paper discusses the role of the hippocampus and temporal lobe, emphasizing the essential importance of recurrent pathways and oscillations occurring in the upper layers of hierarchical neural structures, as well as oscillations in thalamo-cortical loops. The elaborated model helps explain specific processes such as imagining future situations, novel objects, and anticipated action, as well as imagination concerning oneself, which is indispensable for the sense of identity and self-awareness. I attempt to present this compact, simple model of neural circuitry active in imagination by using some intuitive, demonstrative figures. PMID:24335907

  8. Neural encoding schemes of tactile information in afferent activity of the vibrissal system.

    PubMed

    Farfán, Fernando D; Albarracín, Ana L; Felice, Carmelo J

    2013-02-01

    When rats acquire sensory information by actively moving their vibrissae, a neural code is manifested at different levels of the sensory system. Behavioral studies in tactile discrimination agree that rats can distinguish different roughness surfaces by whisking their vibrissae. The present study explores the existence of neural encoding in the afferent activity of one vibrissal nerve. Two neural encoding schemes based on "events" were proposed (cumulative event count and median inter-event time). The events were detected by using an event detection algorithm based on multiscale decomposition of the signal (Continuous Wavelet Transform). The encoding schemes were quantitatively evaluated through the maximum amount of information which was obtained by the Shannon's mutual information formula. Moreover, the effect of difference distances between rat snout and swept surfaces on the information values was also studied. We found that roughness information was encoded by events of 0.8 ms duration in the cumulative event count and event of 1.0 to 1.6 ms duration in the median inter-event count. It was also observed that an extreme decrease of the distance between rat snout and swept surfaces significantly reduces the information values and the capacity to discriminate among the sweep situations.

  9. Neural regions that underlie reinforcement learning are also active for social expectancy violations.

    PubMed

    Harris, Lasana T; Fiske, Susan T

    2010-01-01

    Prediction error, the difference between an expected and an actual outcome, serves as a learning signal that interacts with reward and punishment value to direct future behavior during reinforcement learning. We hypothesized that similar learning and valuation signals may underlie social expectancy violations. Here, we explore the neural correlates of social expectancy violation signals along the universal person-perception dimensions trait warmth and competence. In this context, social learning may result from expectancy violations that occur when a target is inconsistent with an a priori schema. Expectancy violation may activate neural regions normally implicated in prediction error and valuation during appetitive and aversive conditioning. Using fMRI, we first gave perceivers high warmth or competence behavioral information that led to dispositional or situational attributions for the behavior. Participants then saw pictures of people responsible for the behavior; they represented social groups either inconsistent (rated low on either warmth or competence) or consistent (rated high on either warmth or competence) with the behavior information. Warmth and competence expectancy violations activate striatal regions that represent evaluative and prediction error signals. Social cognition regions underlie consistent expectations. These findings suggest that regions underlying reinforcement learning may work in concert with social cognition regions in warmth and competence social expectancy. This study illustrates the neural overlap between neuroeconomics and social neuroscience.

  10. Can the activities of the large scale cortical network be expressed by neural energy? A brief review.

    PubMed

    Wang, Rubin; Zhu, Yating

    2016-02-01

    This paper mainly discusses and summarize that the changes of biological energy in the brain can be expressed by the biophysical energy we constructed. Different from the electrochemical energy, the biophysical energy proposed in the paper not only can be used to simulate the activity of neurons but also be used to simulate the neural activity of large scale cortical networks, so that the scientific nature of the neural energy coding was discussed.

  11. How Active Learning Affects Student Understanding of Concepts in Electromagnetism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belcher, John; Dori, Judy; Breslow, Lori

    2009-05-01

    We discuss the effects of the learning environment of the MIT TEAL project on student cognitive and affective outcomes in introductory electromagnetism. Our assessment included examining student conceptual understanding before and after studying electromagnetism in a media-rich environment. We developed pre-and posttests consisting of conceptual questions from standardized tests, as well as questions designed to assess the effect of visualizations and experiments. The research population consisted of 811 undergraduate students, consisting of small-and a large-scale experimental group and control group. The active learning students improved their conceptual understanding of the subject matter to a significantly higher extent than their control group peers. A subsequent longitudinal study indicates that the long-term effect of the TEAL course on student retention of concepts was significantly stronger than that of the traditional course.

  12. The neural coding of expected and unexpected monetary performance outcomes: dissociations between active and observational learning.

    PubMed

    Bellebaum, C; Jokisch, D; Gizewski, E R; Forsting, M; Daum, I

    2012-02-01

    Successful adaptation to the environment requires the learning of stimulus-response-outcome associations. Such associations can be learned actively by trial and error or by observing the behaviour and accompanying outcomes in other persons. The present study investigated similarities and differences in the neural mechanisms of active and observational learning from monetary feedback using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Two groups of 15 subjects each - active and observational learners - participated in the experiment. On every trial, active learners chose between two stimuli and received monetary feedback. Each observational learner observed the choices and outcomes of one active learner. Learning performance as assessed via active test trials without feedback was comparable between groups. Different activation patterns were observed for the processing of unexpected vs. expected monetary feedback in active and observational learners, particularly for positive outcomes. Activity for unexpected vs. expected reward was stronger in the right striatum in active learning, while activity in the hippocampus was bilaterally enhanced in observational and reduced in active learning. Modulation of activity by prediction error (PE) magnitude was observed in the right putamen in both types of learning, whereas PE related activations in the right anterior caudate nucleus and in the medial orbitofrontal cortex were stronger for active learning. The striatum and orbitofrontal cortex thus appear to link reward stimuli to own behavioural reactions and are less strongly involved when the behavioural outcome refers to another person's action. Alternative explanations such as differences in reward value between active and observational learning are also discussed.

  13. Determination of DPPH free radical scavenging activity: application of artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Musa, Khalid Hamid; Abdullah, Aminah; Al-Haiqi, Ahmed

    2016-03-01

    A new computational approach for the determination of 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging activity (DPPH-RSA) in food is reported, based on the concept of machine learning. Trolox standard was mix with DPPH at different concentrations to produce different colors from purple to yellow. Artificial neural network (ANN) was trained on a typical set of images of the DPPH radical reacting with different levels of Trolox. This allowed the neural network to classify future images of any sample into the correct class of RSA level. The ANN was then able to determine the DPPH-RSA of cinnamon, clove, mung bean, red bean, red rice, brown rice, black rice and tea extract and the results were compared with data obtained using a spectrophotometer. The application of ANN correlated well to the spectrophotometric classical procedure and thus do not require the use of spectrophotometer, and it could be used to obtain semi-quantitative results of DPPH-RSA.

  14. Uniformity and nonuniformity of neural activities correlated to different insight problem solving.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Q; Li, Y; Shang, X; Zhou, Z; Han, L

    2014-06-13

    Previous studies on the neural basis of insight reflected weak consistency except for the anterior cingulate cortex. The present work adopted the semantic and homophonic punny riddle to explore the uniformity and nonuniformity of neural activities correlated to different insight problem solving. Results showed that in the early period of insight solving, the semantic and homophonic punny riddles induced a common N350-500 over the central scalp. However, during -400 to 0 ms before the riddles were solved, the semantic punny riddles induced a positive event-related potential (ERP) deflection over the temporal cortex for retrieving the extensive semantic information, while the homophonic punny riddles induced a positive ERP deflection over the temporal cortex and a negative one in the left frontal cortex which might reflect the semantic and phonological information processing respectively. Our study indicated that different insight problem solving should have the same cognitive process of detecting cognitive conflicts, but have different ways to solve the conflicts.

  15. Active vibration control of flexible cantilever plates using piezoelectric materials and artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdeljaber, Osama; Avci, Onur; Inman, Daniel J.

    2016-02-01

    The study presented in this paper introduces a new intelligent methodology to mitigate the vibration response of flexible cantilever plates. The use of the piezoelectric sensor/actuator pairs for active control of plates is discussed. An intelligent neural network based controller is designed to control the optimal voltage applied on the piezoelectric patches. The control technique utilizes a neurocontroller along with a Kalman Filter to compute the appropriate actuator command. The neurocontroller is trained based on an algorithm that incorporates a set of emulator neural networks which are also trained to predict the future response of the cantilever plate. Then, the neurocontroller is evaluated by comparing the uncontrolled and controlled responses under several types of dynamic excitations. It is observed that the neurocontroller reduced the vibration response of the flexible cantilever plate significantly; the results demonstrated the success and robustness of the neurocontroller independent of the type and distribution of the excitation force.

  16. The BDNF Val66Met Polymorphism Influences Reading Ability and Patterns of Neural Activation in Children

    PubMed Central

    Jasińska, Kaja K.; Molfese, Peter J.; Kornilov, Sergey A.; Mencl, W. Einar; Frost, Stephen J.; Lee, Maria; Pugh, Kenneth R.; Grigorenko, Elena L.; Landi, Nicole

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how genes impact the brain’s functional activation for learning and cognition during development remains limited. We asked whether a common genetic variant in the BDNF gene (the Val66Met polymorphism) modulates neural activation in the young brain during a critical period for the emergence and maturation of the neural circuitry for reading. In animal models, the bdnf variation has been shown to be associated with the structure and function of the developing brain and in humans it has been associated with multiple aspects of cognition, particularly memory, which are relevant for the development of skilled reading. Yet, little is known about the impact of the Val66Met polymorphism on functional brain activation in development, either in animal models or in humans. Here, we examined whether the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism (dbSNP rs6265) is associated with children’s (age 6–10) neural activation patterns during a reading task (n = 81) using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), genotyping, and standardized behavioral assessments of cognitive and reading development. Children homozygous for the Val allele at the SNP rs6265 of the BDNF gene outperformed Met allele carriers on reading comprehension and phonological memory, tasks that have a strong memory component. Consistent with these behavioral findings, Met allele carriers showed greater activation in reading–related brain regions including the fusiform gyrus, the left inferior frontal gyrus and left superior temporal gyrus as well as greater activation in the hippocampus during a word and pseudoword reading task. Increased engagement of memory and spoken language regions for Met allele carriers relative to Val/Val homozygotes during reading suggests that Met carriers have to exert greater effort required to retrieve phonological codes. PMID:27551971

  17. Reconstruction of Neural Activity from EEG Data Using Dynamic Spatiotemporal Constraints.

    PubMed

    Giraldo-Suarez, E; Martinez-Vargas, J D; Castellanos-Dominguez, G

    2016-11-01

    We present a novel iterative regularized algorithm (IRA) for neural activity reconstruction that explicitly includes spatiotemporal constraints, performing a trade-off between space and time resolutions. For improving the spatial accuracy provided by electroencephalography (EEG) signals, we explore a basis set that describes the smooth, localized areas of potentially active brain regions. In turn, we enhance the time resolution by adding the Markovian assumption for brain activity estimation at each time period. Moreover, to deal with applications that have either distributed or localized neural activity, the spatiotemporal constraints are expressed through [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text] norms, respectively. For the purpose of validation, we estimate the neural reconstruction performance in time and space separately. Experimental testing is carried out on artificial data, simulating stationary and non-stationary EEG signals. Also, validation is accomplished on two real-world databases, one holding Evoked Potentials and another with EEG data of focal epilepsy. Moreover, responses of functional magnetic resonance imaging for the former EEG data have been measured in advance, allowing to contrast our findings. Obtained results show that the [Formula: see text]-based IRA produces a spatial resolution that is comparable to the one achieved by some widely used sparse-based estimators of brain activity. At the same time, the [Formula: see text]-based IRA outperforms other similar smooth solutions, providing a spatial resolution that is lower than the sparse [Formula: see text]-based solution. As a result, the proposed IRA is a promising method for improving the accuracy of brain activity reconstruction.

  18. The BDNF Val66Met Polymorphism Influences Reading Ability and Patterns of Neural Activation in Children.

    PubMed

    Jasińska, Kaja K; Molfese, Peter J; Kornilov, Sergey A; Mencl, W Einar; Frost, Stephen J; Lee, Maria; Pugh, Kenneth R; Grigorenko, Elena L; Landi, Nicole

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how genes impact the brain's functional activation for learning and cognition during development remains limited. We asked whether a common genetic variant in the BDNF gene (the Val66Met polymorphism) modulates neural activation in the young brain during a critical period for the emergence and maturation of the neural circuitry for reading. In animal models, the bdnf variation has been shown to be associated with the structure and function of the developing brain and in humans it has been associated with multiple aspects of cognition, particularly memory, which are relevant for the development of skilled reading. Yet, little is known about the impact of the Val66Met polymorphism on functional brain activation in development, either in animal models or in humans. Here, we examined whether the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism (dbSNP rs6265) is associated with children's (age 6-10) neural activation patterns during a reading task (n = 81) using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), genotyping, and standardized behavioral assessments of cognitive and reading development. Children homozygous for the Val allele at the SNP rs6265 of the BDNF gene outperformed Met allele carriers on reading comprehension and phonological memory, tasks that have a strong memory component. Consistent with these behavioral findings, Met allele carriers showed greater activation in reading-related brain regions including the fusiform gyrus, the left inferior frontal gyrus and left superior temporal gyrus as well as greater activation in the hippocampus during a word and pseudoword reading task. Increased engagement of memory and spoken language regions for Met allele carriers relative to Val/Val homozygotes during reading suggests that Met carriers have to exert greater effort required to retrieve phonological codes. PMID:27551971

  19. Reconstruction of Neural Activity from EEG Data Using Dynamic Spatiotemporal Constraints.

    PubMed

    Giraldo-Suarez, E; Martinez-Vargas, J D; Castellanos-Dominguez, G

    2016-11-01

    We present a novel iterative regularized algorithm (IRA) for neural activity reconstruction that explicitly includes spatiotemporal constraints, performing a trade-off between space and time resolutions. For improving the spatial accuracy provided by electroencephalography (EEG) signals, we explore a basis set that describes the smooth, localized areas of potentially active brain regions. In turn, we enhance the time resolution by adding the Markovian assumption for brain activity estimation at each time period. Moreover, to deal with applications that have either distributed or localized neural activity, the spatiotemporal constraints are expressed through [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text] norms, respectively. For the purpose of validation, we estimate the neural reconstruction performance in time and space separately. Experimental testing is carried out on artificial data, simulating stationary and non-stationary EEG signals. Also, validation is accomplished on two real-world databases, one holding Evoked Potentials and another with EEG data of focal epilepsy. Moreover, responses of functional magnetic resonance imaging for the former EEG data have been measured in advance, allowing to contrast our findings. Obtained results show that the [Formula: see text]-based IRA produces a spatial resolution that is comparable to the one achieved by some widely used sparse-based estimators of brain activity. At the same time, the [Formula: see text]-based IRA outperforms other similar smooth solutions, providing a spatial resolution that is lower than the sparse [Formula: see text]-based solution. As a result, the proposed IRA is a promising method for improving the accuracy of brain activity reconstruction. PMID:27354190

  20. Balanced amplification: a new mechanism of selective amplification of neural activity patterns.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Brendan K; Miller, Kenneth D

    2009-02-26

    In cerebral cortex, ongoing activity absent a stimulus can resemble stimulus-driven activity in size and structure. In particular, spontaneous activity in cat primary visual cortex (V1) has structure significantly correlated with evoked responses to oriented stimuli. This suggests that, from unstructured input, cortical circuits selectively amplify specific activity patterns. Current understanding of selective amplification involves elongation of a neural assembly's lifetime by mutual excitation among its neurons. We introduce a new mechanism for selective amplification without elongation of lifetime: "balanced amplification." Strong balanced amplification arises when feedback inhibition stabilizes strong recurrent excitation, a pattern likely to be typical of cortex. Thus, balanced amplification should ubiquitously contribute to cortical activity. Balanced amplification depends on the fact that individual neurons project only excitatory or only inhibitory synapses. This leads to a hidden feedforward connectivity between activity patterns. We show in a detailed biophysical model that this can explain the cat V1 observations.

  1. A one-layer recurrent neural network with a discontinuous hard-limiting activation function for quadratic programming.

    PubMed

    Liu, Q; Wang, J

    2008-04-01

    In this paper, a one-layer recurrent neural network with a discontinuous hard-limiting activation function is proposed for quadratic programming. This neural network is capable of solving a large class of quadratic programming problems. The state variables of the neural network are proven to be globally stable and the output variables are proven to be convergent to optimal solutions as long as the objective function is strictly convex on a set defined by the equality constraints. In addition, a sequential quadratic programming approach based on the proposed recurrent neural network is developed for general nonlinear programming. Simulation results on numerical examples and support vector machine (SVM) learning show the effectiveness and performance of the neural network.

  2. Vector activity and propagule size affect dispersal potential by vertebrates.

    PubMed

    van Leeuwen, Casper H A; Tollenaar, Marthe L; Klaassen, Marcel

    2012-09-01

    Many small organisms in various life stages can be transported in the digestive system of larger vertebrates, a process known as endozoochory. Potential dispersal distances of these "propagules" are generally calculated after monitoring retrieval in experiments with resting vector animals. We argue that vectors in natural situations will be actively moving during effective transport rather than resting. We here test for the first time how physical activity of a vector animal might affect its dispersal efficiency. We compared digestive characteristics between swimming, wading (i.e. resting in water) and isolation (i.e. resting in a cage) mallards (Anas platyrhynchos). We fed plastic markers and aquatic gastropods, and monitored retrieval and survival of these propagules in the droppings over 24 h. Over a period of 5 h of swimming, mallards excreted 1.5 times more markers than when wading and 2.3 times more markers than isolation birds, the pattern being reversed over the subsequent period of monitoring where all birds were resting. Retention times of markers were shortened for approximately 1 h for swimming, and 0.5 h for wading birds. Shorter retention times imply higher survival of propagules at increased vector activity. However, digestive intensity measured directly by retrieval of snail shells was not a straightforward function of level of activity. Increased marker size had a negative effect on discharge rate. Our experiment indicates that previous estimates of propagule dispersal distances based on resting animals are overestimated, while propagule survival seems underestimated. These findings have implications for the dispersal of invasive species, meta-population structures and long distance colonization events.

  3. Neural activity tied to reading predicts individual differences in extended-text comprehension.

    PubMed

    Mossbridge, Julia A; Grabowecky, Marcia; Paller, Ken A; Suzuki, Satoru

    2013-01-01

    Reading comprehension depends on neural processes supporting the access, understanding, and storage of words over time. Examinations of the neural activity correlated with reading have contributed to our understanding of reading comprehension, especially for the comprehension of sentences and short passages. However, the neural activity associated with comprehending an extended text is not well-understood. Here we describe a current-source-density (CSD) index that predicts individual differences in the comprehension of an extended text. The index is the difference in CSD-transformed event-related potentials (ERPs) to a target word between two conditions: a comprehension condition with words from a story presented in their original order, and a scrambled condition with the same words presented in a randomized order. In both conditions participants responded to the target word, and in the comprehension condition they also tried to follow the story in preparation for a comprehension test. We reasoned that the spatiotemporal pattern of difference-CSDs would reflect comprehension-related processes beyond word-level processing. We used a pattern-classification method to identify the component of the difference-CSDs that accurately (88%) discriminated good from poor comprehenders. The critical CSD index was focused at a frontal-midline scalp site, occurred 400-500 ms after target-word onset, and was strongly correlated with comprehension performance. Behavioral data indicated that group differences in effort or motor preparation could not explain these results. Further, our CSD index appears to be distinct from the well-known P300 and N400 components, and CSD transformation seems to be crucial for distinguishing good from poor comprehenders using our experimental paradigm. Once our CSD index is fully characterized, this neural signature of individual differences in extended-text comprehension may aid the diagnosis and remediation of reading comprehension deficits.

  4. Neural activity during emotion recognition after combined cognitive plus social cognitive training in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Hooker, Christine I; Bruce, Lori; Fisher, Melissa; Verosky, Sara C; Miyakawa, Asako; Vinogradov, Sophia

    2012-08-01

    Cognitive remediation training has been shown to improve both cognitive and social cognitive deficits in people with schizophrenia, but the mechanisms that support this behavioral improvement are largely unknown. One hypothesis is that intensive behavioral training in cognition and/or social cognition restores the underlying neural mechanisms that support targeted skills. However, there is little research on the neural effects of cognitive remediation training. This study investigated whether a 50 h (10-week) remediation intervention which included both cognitive and social cognitive training would influence neural function in regions that support social cognition. Twenty-two stable, outpatient schizophrenia participants were randomized to a treatment condition consisting of auditory-based cognitive training (AT) [Brain Fitness Program/auditory module ~60 min/day] plus social cognition training (SCT) which was focused on emotion recognition [~5-15 min per day] or a placebo condition of non-specific computer games (CG) for an equal amount of time. Pre and post intervention assessments included an fMRI task of positive and negative facial emotion recognition, and standard behavioral assessments of cognition, emotion processing, and functional outcome. There were no significant intervention-related improvements in general cognition or functional outcome. fMRI results showed the predicted group-by-time interaction. Specifically, in comparison to CG, AT+SCT participants had a greater pre-to-post intervention increase in postcentral gyrus activity during emotion recognition of both positive and negative emotions. Furthermore, among all participants, the increase in postcentral gyrus activity predicted behavioral improvement on a standardized test of emotion processing (MSCEIT: Perceiving Emotions). Results indicate that combined cognition and social cognition training impacts neural mechanisms that support social cognition skills. PMID:22695257

  5. Neural activity tied to reading predicts individual differences in extended-text comprehension

    PubMed Central

    Mossbridge, Julia A.; Grabowecky, Marcia; Paller, Ken A.; Suzuki, Satoru

    2013-01-01

    Reading comprehension depends on neural processes supporting the access, understanding, and storage of words over time. Examinations of the neural activity correlated with reading have contributed to our understanding of reading comprehension, especially for the comprehension of sentences and short passages. However, the neural activity associated with comprehending an extended text is not well-understood. Here we describe a current-source-density (CSD) index that predicts individual differences in the comprehension of an extended text. The index is the difference in CSD-transformed event-related potentials (ERPs) to a target word between two conditions: a comprehension condition with words from a story presented in their original order, and a scrambled condition with the same words presented in a randomized order. In both conditions participants responded to the target word, and in the comprehension condition they also tried to follow the story in preparation for a comprehension test. We reasoned that the spatiotemporal pattern of difference-CSDs would reflect comprehension-related processes beyond word-level processing. We used a pattern-classification method to identify the component of the difference-CSDs that accurately (88%) discriminated good from poor comprehenders. The critical CSD index was focused at a frontal-midline scalp site, occurred 400–500 ms after target-word onset, and was strongly correlated with comprehension performance. Behavioral data indicated that group differences in effort or motor preparation could not explain these results. Further, our CSD index appears to be distinct from the well-known P300 and N400 components, and CSD transformation seems to be crucial for distinguishing good from poor comprehenders using our experimental paradigm. Once our CSD index is fully characterized, this neural signature of individual differences in extended-text comprehension may aid the diagnosis and remediation of reading comprehension deficits. PMID

  6. Using convolutional neural networks for human activity classification on micro-Doppler radar spectrograms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordan, Tyler S.

    2016-05-01

    This paper presents the findings of using convolutional neural networks (CNNs) to classify human activity from micro-Doppler features. An emphasis on activities involving potential security threats such as holding a gun are explored. An automotive 24 GHz radar on chip was used to collect the data and a CNN (normally applied to image classification) was trained on the resulting spectrograms. The CNN achieves an error rate of 1.65 % on classifying running vs. walking, 17.3 % error on armed walking vs. unarmed walking, and 22 % on classifying six different actions.

  7. Robust stability analysis of delayed Takagi-Sugeno fuzzy Hopfield neural networks with discontinuous activation functions

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Lihong; Zuo, Yi

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, the global robust stability problem of delayed Takagi–Sugeno fuzzy Hopfield neural networks with discontinuous activation functions (TSFHNNs) is considered. Based on Lyapunov stability theory and M-matrices theory, we derive a stability criterion to guarantee the global robust stability of TSFHNNs. Compared with the existing literature, we remove the assumptions on the neuron activations such as Lipschitz conditions, bounded, monotonic increasing property or the assumption that the right-limit value is bigger than the left one at the discontinuous point. Finally, two numerical examples are given to show the effectiveness of the proposed stability results. PMID:22132043

  8. Neural adhesion, growth, and activity on carbon nanotubes and carbonized nanofibers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franca, Eric William

    This dissertation focuses on how the physical and electrical properties of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and carbonized nanofibers (CNFs) affect the physiological and electrophysiological properties of neurons and neural networks and how this may affect the efficacy of these nanomaterials as microelectrode materials. In general, the pursuit of increasing electrode sensitivity while maintaining low noise levels is addressed by investigating and utilizing novel electrode materials. Carbon nanomaterials have a native conductivity and nano-scale roughness that should decrease microelectrode noise levels and impedance by virtue of a substantially increased surface area. In addition to the beneficial microelectrode properties, these carbon nanomaterials could increase the integration of the electrode to the neural tissue. The work here is an investigation of how selected CNT and CNF materials affect the viability, outgrowth, and adhesion of cortical neurons in vitro and how the physical and chemical properties of each substrate correlates to these measurements. The intent is that properties detailed in vitro can be assumed to extrapolate to performance in vivo assuming the same materials are utilized for invasive, implanted microelectrodes. Carbon nanotubes were deposited by a layer-by-layer (LBL) method with poly(ethylenimine) (PEI). Carbon nanofiber substrates were prepared in conjunction with collaborators via electrospinning a photosensitive polymer (SU-8), photopatterning, and pyrolyzing the depositions. In addition to these substrates, control samples were prepared in the form of PEI-treated glass coverslips, carbonized thin films, SU-8 thin films, and SU-8 nanofibers. The primary variable between all of these substrates is the roughness or topography of each deposition (ranging from 0.26 nm to 160 nm average roughness). Physical and chemical characteristics of the depositions are presented in addition to the electrical characteristics which make them attractive as

  9. Emotion Regulation and Excess Weight: Impaired Affective Processing Characterized by Dysfunctional Insula Activation and Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Mata, Fernanda; Martínez-Zalacaín, Ignacio; Cano, Marta; Contreras-Rodríguez, Oren; Fernández-Aranda, Fernando; Yucel, Murat; Soriano-Mas, Carles; Verdejo-García, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Emotion-regulation strategies are understood to influence food intake. This study examined the neurophysiological underpinnings of negative emotion processing and emotion regulation in individuals with excess weight compared to normal-weight controls. Fifteen participants with excess-weight (body mass index >25) and sixteen normal-weight controls (body mass index 18–25) performed an emotion-regulation task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. Participants were exposed to 24 negative affective or neutral pictures that they were instructed to Observe (neutral pictures), Maintain (sustain the emotion elicited by negative pictures) or Regulate (down-regulate the emotion provoked by negative pictures through previously trained reappraisal techniques). When instructed to regulate negative emotions by means of cognitive reappraisal, participants with excess weight displayed persistently heightened activation in the right anterior insula. Decreased responsivity was also found in right anterior insula, the orbitofrontal cortex and cerebellum during negative emotion experience in participants with excess weight. Psycho-physiological interaction analyses showed that excess-weight participants had decreased negative functional coupling between the right anterior insula and the right dlPFC, and the bilateral dmPFC during cognitive reappraisal. Our findings support contentions that excess weight is linked to an abnormal pattern of neural activation and connectivity during the experience and regulation of negative emotions, with the insula playing a key role in these alterations. We posit that ineffective regulation of emotional states contributes to the acquisition and preservation of excess weight. PMID:27003840

  10. Emotion Regulation and Excess Weight: Impaired Affective Processing Characterized by Dysfunctional Insula Activation and Connectivity.

    PubMed

    Steward, Trevor; Picó-Pérez, Maria; Mata, Fernanda; Martínez-Zalacaín, Ignacio; Cano, Marta; Contreras-Rodríguez, Oren; Fernández-Aranda, Fernando; Yucel, Murat; Soriano-Mas, Carles; Verdejo-García, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Emotion-regulation strategies are understood to influence food intake. This study examined the neurophysiological underpinnings of negative emotion processing and emotion regulation in individuals with excess weight compared to normal-weight controls. Fifteen participants with excess-weight (body mass index >25) and sixteen normal-weight controls (body mass index 18-25) performed an emotion-regulation task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. Participants were exposed to 24 negative affective or neutral pictures that they were instructed to Observe (neutral pictures), Maintain (sustain the emotion elicited by negative pictures) or Regulate (down-regulate the emotion provoked by negative pictures through previously trained reappraisal techniques). When instructed to regulate negative emotions by means of cognitive reappraisal, participants with excess weight displayed persistently heightened activation in the right anterior insula. Decreased responsivity was also found in right anterior insula, the orbitofrontal cortex and cerebellum during negative emotion experience in participants with excess weight. Psycho-physiological interaction analyses showed that excess-weight participants had decreased negative functional coupling between the right anterior insula and the right dlPFC, and the bilateral dmPFC during cognitive reappraisal. Our findings support contentions that excess weight is linked to an abnormal pattern of neural activation and connectivity during the experience and regulation of negative emotions, with the insula playing a key role in these alterations. We posit that ineffective regulation of emotional states contributes to the acquisition and preservation of excess weight. PMID:27003840

  11. Selective neural activation in a histologically derived model of peripheral nerve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butson, Christopher R.; Miller, Ian O.; Normann, Richard A.; Clark, Gregory A.

    2011-06-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is a general term for therapeutic methods that use electrical stimulation to aid or replace lost ability. For FES systems that communicate with the nervous system, one critical component is the electrode interface through which the machine-body information transfer must occur. In this paper, we examine the influence of inhomogeneous tissue conductivities and positions of nodes of Ranvier on activation of myelinated axons for neuromuscular control as a function of electrode configuration. To evaluate these effects, we developed a high-resolution bioelectric model of a fascicle from a stained cross-section of cat sciatic nerve. The model was constructed by digitizing a fixed specimen of peripheral nerve, extruding the image along the axis of the nerve, and assigning each anatomical component to one of several different tissue types. Electrodes were represented by current sources in monopolar, transverse bipolar, and longitudinal bipolar configurations; neural activation was determined using coupled field-neuron simulations with myelinated axon cable models. We found that the use of an isotropic tissue medium overestimated neural activation thresholds compared with the use of physiologically based, inhomogeneous tissue medium, even after controlling for mean impedance levels. Additionally, the positions of the cathodic sources relative to the nodes of Ranvier had substantial effects on activation, and these effects were modulated by the electrode configuration. Our results indicate that physiologically based tissue properties cause considerable variability in the neural response, and the inclusion of these properties is an important component in accurately predicting activation. The results are used to suggest new electrode designs to enable selective stimulation of small diameter fibers.

  12. Thinking about the thoughts of others; temporal and spatial neural activation during false belief reasoning.

    PubMed

    Mossad, Sarah I; AuCoin-Power, Michelle; Urbain, Charline; Smith, Mary Lou; Pang, Elizabeth W; Taylor, Margot J

    2016-07-01

    Theory of Mind (ToM) is the ability to understand the perspectives, mental states and beliefs of others in order to anticipate their behaviour and is therefore crucial to social interactions. Although fMRI has been widely used to establish the neural networks implicated in ToM, little is known about the timing of ToM-related brain activity. We used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to measure the neural processes underlying ToM, as MEG provides very accurate timing and excellent spatial localization of brain processes. We recorded MEG activity during a false belief task, a reliable measure of ToM, in twenty young adults (10 females). MEG data were recorded in a 151 sensor CTF system (MISL, Coquitlam, BC) and data were co-registered to each participant's MRI (Siemens 3T) for source reconstruction. We found stronger right temporoparietal junction (rTPJ) activations in the false belief condition from 150ms to 225ms, in the right precuneus from 275ms to 375ms, in the right inferior frontal gyrus from 200ms to 300ms and the superior frontal gyrus from 300ms to 400ms. Our findings extend the literature by demonstrating the timing and duration of neural activity in the main regions involved in the "mentalizing" network, showing that activations related to false belief in adults are predominantly right lateralized and onset around 100ms. The sensitivity of MEG will allow us to determine spatial and temporal differences in the brain processes in ToM in younger populations or those who demonstrate deficits in this ability. PMID:27039146

  13. Inaudible high-frequency sounds affect brain activity: hypersonic effect.

    PubMed

    Oohashi, T; Nishina, E; Honda, M; Yonekura, Y; Fuwamoto, Y; Kawai, N; Maekawa, T; Nakamura, S; Fukuyama, H; Shibasaki, H

    2000-06-01

    Although it is generally accepted that humans cannot perceive sounds in the frequency range above 20 kHz, the question of whether the existence of such "inaudible" high-frequency components may affect the acoustic perception of audible sounds remains unanswered. In this study, we used noninvasive physiological measurements of brain responses to provide evidence that sounds containing high-frequency components (HFCs) above the audible range significantly affect the brain activity of listeners. We used the gamelan music of Bali, which is extremely rich in HFCs with a nonstationary structure, as a natural sound source, dividing it into two components: an audible low-frequency component (LFC) below 22 kHz and an HFC above 22 kHz. Brain electrical activity and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) were measured as markers of neuronal activity while subjects were exposed to sounds with various combinations of LFCs and HFCs. None of the subjects recognized the HFC as sound when it was presented alone. Nevertheless, the power spectra of the alpha frequency range of the spontaneous electroencephalogram (alpha-EEG) recorded from the occipital region increased with statistical significance when the subjects were exposed to sound containing both an HFC and an LFC, compared with an otherwise identical sound from which the HFC was removed (i.e., LFC alone). In contrast, compared with the baseline, no enhancement of alpha-EEG was evident when either an HFC or an LFC was presented separately. Positron emission tomography measurements revealed that, when an HFC and an LFC were presented together, the rCBF in the brain stem and the left thalamus increased significantly compared with a sound lacking the HFC above 22 kHz but that was otherwise identical. Simultaneous EEG measurements showed that the power of occipital alpha-EEGs correlated significantly with the rCBF in the left thalamus. Psychological evaluation indicated that the subjects felt the sound containing an HFC to be more

  14. Interactivity and reward-related neural activation during a serious videogame.

    PubMed

    Cole, Steven W; Yoo, Daniel J; Knutson, Brian

    2012-01-01

    This study sought to determine whether playing a "serious" interactive digital game (IDG)--the Re-Mission videogame for cancer patients--activates mesolimbic neural circuits associated with incentive motivation, and if so, whether such effects stem from the participatory aspects of interactive gameplay, or from the complex sensory/perceptual engagement generated by its dynamic event-stream. Healthy undergraduates were randomized to groups in which they were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) as they either actively played Re-Mission or as they passively observed a gameplay audio-visual stream generated by a yoked active group subject. Onset of interactive game play robustly activated mesolimbic projection regions including the caudate nucleus and nucleus accumbens, as well as a subregion of the parahippocampal gyrus. During interactive gameplay, subjects showed extended activation of the thalamus, anterior insula, putamen, and motor-related regions, accompanied by decreased activation in parietal and medial prefrontal cortex. Offset of interactive gameplay activated the anterior insula and anterior cingulate. Between-group comparisons of within-subject contrasts confirmed that mesolimbic activation was significantly more pronounced in the active playgroup than in the passive exposure control group. Individual difference analyses also found the magnitude of parahippocampal activation following gameplay onset to correlate with positive attitudes toward chemotherapy assessed both at the end of the scanning session and at an unannounced one-month follow-up. These findings suggest that IDG-induced activation of reward-related mesolimbic neural circuits stems primarily from participatory engagement in gameplay (interactivity), rather than from the effects of vivid and dynamic sensory stimulation.

  15. Interactivity and Reward-Related Neural Activation during a Serious Videogame

    PubMed Central

    Cole, Steven W.; Yoo, Daniel J.; Knutson, Brian

    2012-01-01

    This study sought to determine whether playing a “serious” interactive digital game (IDG) – the Re-Mission videogame for cancer patients – activates mesolimbic neural circuits associated with incentive motivation, and if so, whether such effects stem from the participatory aspects of interactive gameplay, or from the complex sensory/perceptual engagement generated by its dynamic event-stream. Healthy undergraduates were randomized to groups in which they were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) as they either actively played Re-Mission or as they passively observed a gameplay audio-visual stream generated by a yoked active group subject. Onset of interactive game play robustly activated mesolimbic projection regions including the caudate nucleus and nucleus accumbens, as well as a subregion of the parahippocampal gyrus. During interactive gameplay, subjects showed extended activation of the thalamus, anterior insula, putamen, and motor-related regions, accompanied by decreased activation in parietal and medial prefrontal cortex. Offset of interactive gameplay activated the anterior insula and anterior cingulate. Between-group comparisons of within-subject contrasts confirmed that mesolimbic activation was significantly more pronounced in the active playgroup than in the passive exposure control group. Individual difference analyses also found the magnitude of parahippocampal activation following gameplay onset to correlate with positive attitudes toward chemotherapy assessed both at the end of the scanning session and at an unannounced one-month follow-up. These findings suggest that IDG-induced activation of reward-related mesolimbic neural circuits stems primarily from participatory engagement in gameplay (interactivity), rather than from the effects of vivid and dynamic sensory stimulation. PMID:22442733

  16. Neural activity related to cognitive and emotional empathy in post-traumatic stress disorder.

    PubMed

    Mazza, Monica; Tempesta, Daniela; Pino, Maria Chiara; Nigri, Anna; Catalucci, Alessia; Guadagni, Veronica; Gallucci, Massimo; Iaria, Giuseppe; Ferrara, Michele

    2015-04-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate the empathic ability and its functional brain correlates in post-traumatic stress disorder subjects (PTSD). Seven PTSD subjects and ten healthy controls, all present in the L'Aquila area during the earthquake of the April 2009, underwent fMRI during which they performed a modified version of the Multifaceted Empathy Test. PTSD patients showed impairments in implicit and explicit emotional empathy, but not in cognitive empathy. Brain responses during cognitive empathy showed an increased activation in patients compared to controls in the right medial frontal gyrus and the left inferior frontal gyrus. During implicit emotional empathy responses patients with PTSD, compared to controls, exhibited greater neural activity in the left pallidum and right insula; instead the control group showed an increased activation in right inferior frontal gyrus. Finally, in the explicit emotional empathy responses the PTSD group showed a reduced neural activity in the left insula and the left inferior frontal gyrus. The behavioral deficit limited to the emotional empathy dimension, accompanied by different patterns of activation in empathy related brain structures, represent a first piece of evidence of a dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy in PTSD patients. The present findings support the idea that empathy is a multidimensional process, with different facets depending on distinct anatomical substrates. PMID:25555525

  17. Deep Convolutional and LSTM Recurrent Neural Networks for Multimodal Wearable Activity Recognition.

    PubMed

    Ordóñez, Francisco Javier; Roggen, Daniel

    2016-01-18

    Human activity recognition (HAR) tasks have traditionally been solved using engineered features obtained by heuristic processes. Current research suggests that deep convolutional neural networks are suited to automate feature extraction from raw sensor inputs. However, human activities are made of complex sequences of motor movements, and capturing this temporal dynamics is fundamental for successful HAR. Based on the recent success of recurrent neural networks for time series domains, we propose a generic deep framework for activity recognition based on convolutional and LSTM recurrent units, which: (i) is suitable for multimodal wearable sensors; (ii) can perform sensor fusion naturally; (iii) does not require expert knowledge in designing features; and (iv) explicitly models the temporal dynamics of feature activations. We evaluate our framework on two datasets, one of which has been used in a public activity recognition challenge. Our results show that our framework outperforms competing deep non-recurrent networks on the challenge dataset by 4% on average; outperforming some of the previous reported results by up to 9%. Our results show that the framework can be applied to homogeneous sensor modalities, but can also fuse multimodal sensors to improve performance. We characterise key architectural hyperparameters' influence on performance to provide insights about their optimisation.

  18. Deep Convolutional and LSTM Recurrent Neural Networks for Multimodal Wearable Activity Recognition.

    PubMed

    Ordóñez, Francisco Javier; Roggen, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Human activity recognition (HAR) tasks have traditionally been solved using engineered features obtained by heuristic processes. Current research suggests that deep convolutional neural networks are suited to automate feature extraction from raw sensor inputs. However, human activities are made of complex sequences of motor movements, and capturing this temporal dynamics is fundamental for successful HAR. Based on the recent success of recurrent neural networks for time series domains, we propose a generic deep framework for activity recognition based on convolutional and LSTM recurrent units, which: (i) is suitable for multimodal wearable sensors; (ii) can perform sensor fusion naturally; (iii) does not require expert knowledge in designing features; and (iv) explicitly models the temporal dynamics of feature activations. We evaluate our framework on two datasets, one of which has been used in a public activity recognition challenge. Our results show that our framework outperforms competing deep non-recurrent networks on the challenge dataset by 4% on average; outperforming some of the previous reported results by up to 9%. Our results show that the framework can be applied to homogeneous sensor modalities, but can also fuse multimodal sensors to improve performance. We characterise key architectural hyperparameters' influence on performance to provide insights about their optimisation. PMID:26797612

  19. Neural activity related to cognitive and emotional empathy in post-traumatic stress disorder.

    PubMed

    Mazza, Monica; Tempesta, Daniela; Pino, Maria Chiara; Nigri, Anna; Catalucci, Alessia; Guadagni, Veronica; Gallucci, Massimo; Iaria, Giuseppe; Ferrara, Michele

    2015-04-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate the empathic ability and its functional brain correlates in post-traumatic stress disorder subjects (PTSD). Seven PTSD subjects and ten healthy controls, all present in the L'Aquila area during the earthquake of the April 2009, underwent fMRI during which they performed a modified version of the Multifaceted Empathy Test. PTSD patients showed impairments in implicit and explicit emotional empathy, but not in cognitive empathy. Brain responses during cognitive empathy showed an increased activation in patients compared to controls in the right medial frontal gyrus and the left inferior frontal gyrus. During implicit emotional empathy responses patients with PTSD, compared to controls, exhibited greater neural activity in the left pallidum and right insula; instead the control group showed an increased activation in right inferior frontal gyrus. Finally, in the explicit emotional empathy responses the PTSD group showed a reduced neural activity in the left insula and the left inferior frontal gyrus. The behavioral deficit limited to the emotional empathy dimension, accompanied by different patterns of activation in empathy related brain structures, represent a first piece of evidence of a dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy in PTSD patients. The present findings support the idea that empathy is a multidimensional process, with different facets depending on distinct anatomical substrates.

  20. Deep Convolutional and LSTM Recurrent Neural Networks for Multimodal Wearable Activity Recognition

    PubMed Central

    Ordóñez, Francisco Javier; Roggen, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Human activity recognition (HAR) tasks have traditionally been solved using engineered features obtained by heuristic processes. Current research suggests that deep convolutional neural networks are suited to automate feature extraction from raw sensor inputs. However, human activities are made of complex sequences of motor movements, and capturing this temporal dynamics is fundamental for successful HAR. Based on the recent success of recurrent neural networks for time series domains, we propose a generic deep framework for activity recognition based on convolutional and LSTM recurrent units, which: (i) is suitable for multimodal wearable sensors; (ii) can perform sensor fusion naturally; (iii) does not require expert knowledge in designing features; and (iv) explicitly models the temporal dynamics of feature activations. We evaluate our framework on two datasets, one of which has been used in a public activity recognition challenge. Our results show that our framework outperforms competing deep non-recurrent networks on the challenge dataset by 4% on average; outperforming some of the previous reported results by up to 9%. Our results show that the framework can be applied to homogeneous sensor modalities, but can also fuse multimodal sensors to improve performance. We characterise key architectural hyperparameters’ influence on performance to provide insights about their optimisation. PMID:26797612

  1. A wearable sensor module with a neural-network-based activity classification algorithm for daily energy expenditure estimation.

    PubMed

    Lin, Che-Wei; Yang, Ya-Ting C; Wang, Jeen-Shing; Yang, Yi-Ching

    2012-09-01

    This paper presents a wearable module and neural-network-based activity classification algorithm for energy expenditure estimation. The purpose of our design is first to categorize physical activities with similar intensity levels, and then to construct energy expenditure regression (EER) models using neural networks in order to optimize the estimation performance. The classification of physical activities for EER model construction is based on the acceleration and ECG signal data collected by wearable sensor modules developed by our research lab. The proposed algorithm consists of procedures for data collection, data preprocessing, activity classification, feature selection, and construction of EER models using neural networks. In order to reduce the computational load and achieve satisfactory estimation performance, we employed sequential forward and backward search strategies for feature selection. Two representative neural networks, a radial basis function network (RBFN) and a generalized regression neural network (GRNN), were employed as EER models for performance comparisons. Our experimental results have successfully validated the effectiveness of our wearable sensor module and its neural-network-based activity classification algorithm for energy expenditure estimation. In addition, our results demonstrate the superior performance of GRNN as compared to RBFN.

  2. Out-of-sync: disrupted neural activity in emotional circuitry during film viewing in melancholic depression.

    PubMed

    Guo, Christine C; Nguyen, Vinh T; Hyett, Matthew P; Parker, Gordon B; Breakspear, Michael J

    2015-06-26

    While a rich body of research in controlled experiments has established changes in the neural circuitry of emotion in major depressive disorders, little is known as to how such alterations might translate into complex, naturalistic settings--namely involving dynamic multimodal stimuli with rich contexts, such as those provided by films. Neuroimaging paradigms employing dynamic natural stimuli alleviate the anxiety often associated with complex tasks and eschew the need for laboratory-style abstractions, hence providing an ecologically valid means of elucidating neural underpinnings of neuropsychiatric disorders. To probe the neurobiological signature of refined depression subtypes, we acquired functional neuroimaging data in patients with the melancholic subtype of major depressive disorder during free viewing of emotionally salient films. We found a marked disengagement of ventromedial prefrontal cortex during natural viewing of a film with negative emotional valence in patients with melancholia. This effect significantly correlated with depression severity. Such changes occurred on the background of diminished consistency of neural activity in visual and auditory sensory networks, as well as higher-order networks involved in emotion and attention, including bilateral intraparietal sulcus and right anterior insula. These findings may reflect a failure to re-allocate resources and diminished reactivity to external emotional stimuli in melancholia.

  3. Out-of-sync: disrupted neural activity in emotional circuitry during film viewing in melancholic depression

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Christine C.; Nguyen, Vinh T.; Hyett, Matthew P.; Parker, Gordon B.; Breakspear, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    While a rich body of research in controlled experiments has established changes in the neural circuitry of emotion in major depressive disorders, little is known as to how such alterations might translate into complex, naturalistic settings - namely involving dynamic multimodal stimuli with rich contexts, such as those provided by films. Neuroimaging paradigms employing dynamic natural stimuli alleviate the anxiety often associated with complex tasks and eschew the need for laboratory-style abstractions, hence providing an ecologically valid means of elucidating neural underpinnings of neuropsychiatric disorders. To probe the neurobiological signature of refined depression subtypes, we acquired functional neuroimaging data in patients with the melancholic subtype of major depressive disorder during free viewing of emotionally salient films. We found a marked disengagement of ventromedial prefrontal cortex during natural viewing of a film with negative emotional valence in patients with melancholia. This effect significantly correlated with depression severity. Such changes occurred on the background of diminished consistency of neural activity in visual and auditory sensory networks, as well as higher-order networks involved in emotion and attention, including bilateral intraparietal sulcus and right anterior insula. These findings may reflect a failure to re-allocate resources and diminished reactivity to external emotional stimuli in melancholia. PMID:26112251

  4. Neural activation for conceptual identification of correct versus incorrect tool-object pairs.

    PubMed

    Mizelle, J C; Wheaton, Lewis A

    2010-10-01

    Appropriate tool-object pairing is a natural part of our lives. When preparing to clean our teeth, we know that a toothbrush is useful, but not a screwdriver. The neural correlates of this pairing process remain unclear. We recorded 64-channel electroencephalography to determine neural correlates of identification of tool-object matches and mismatches. Subjects were shown a target tool (e.g. spoon) later paired with an object that was either a conceptual match (e.g. bowl) or mismatch (e.g. wood). To verify that activity was not related to general concept of match-mismatch, in a second condition subjects saw non-tool environmental items (e.g. bird) later paired with a conceptual match (e.g. nest) or mismatch (e.g. spider web). Analysis was focused on time bins after each picture, using standardized low-resolution brain electromagnetic tomography (sLORETA). Tool-object match versus mismatch revealed significant differences in the posterior cingulate, precuneus, left insula and superior temporal gyrus. These patterns were not present for environmental match versus mismatch. This work suggests a specific network in comprehending tool-based pairings, but not extensive to other pairings. The posterior cingulate, precuneus, insula and superior temporal gyrus preferentially differentiates tool-object matching and mismatching, identifying a potential locus related to impairments in comprehending appropriate and inappropriate tool-object relationships that arise after neural injury.

  5. Microglia-derived TNFα induces apoptosis in neural precursor cells via transcriptional activation of the Bcl-2 family member Puma.

    PubMed

    Guadagno, J; Xu, X; Karajgikar, M; Brown, A; Cregan, S P

    2013-01-01

    Neuroinflammation is a common feature of acute neurological conditions such as stroke and spinal cord injury, as well as neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Previous studies have demonstrated that acute neuroinflammation can adversely affect the survival of neural precursor cells (NPCs) and thereby limit the capacity for regeneration and repair. However, the mechanisms by which neuroinflammatory processes induce NPC death remain unclear. Microglia are key mediators of neuroinflammation and when activated to induce a pro-inflammatory state produce a number of factors that could affect NPC survival. Importantly, in the present study we demonstrate that tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) produced by lipopolysaccharide-activated microglia is necessary and sufficient to trigger apoptosis in mouse NPCs in vitro. Furthermore, we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces NPC apoptosis via a mitochondrial pathway regulated by the Bcl-2 family protein Bax. BH3-only proteins are known to play a key role in regulating Bax activation and we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces the expression of the BH3-only family member Puma in NPCs via an NF-κB-dependent mechanism. Specifically, we show that NF-κB is activated in NPCs treated with conditioned media from activated microglia and that Puma induction and NPC apoptosis is blocked by the NF-κB inhibitor BAY-117082. Importantly, we have determined that NPC apoptosis induced by activated microglia-derived TNFα is attenuated in Puma-deficient NPCs, indicating that Puma induction is required for NPC death. Consistent with this, we demonstrate that Puma-deficient NPCs exhibit an ∼13-fold increase in survival as compared with wild-type NPCs following transplantation into the inflammatory environment of the injured spinal cord in vivo. In summary, we have identified a key signaling pathway that regulates neuroinflammation induced apoptosis

  6. Microglia-derived TNFα induces apoptosis in neural precursor cells via transcriptional activation of the Bcl-2 family member Puma.

    PubMed

    Guadagno, J; Xu, X; Karajgikar, M; Brown, A; Cregan, S P

    2013-01-01

    Neuroinflammation is a common feature of acute neurological conditions such as stroke and spinal cord injury, as well as neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Previous studies have demonstrated that acute neuroinflammation can adversely affect the survival of neural precursor cells (NPCs) and thereby limit the capacity for regeneration and repair. However, the mechanisms by which neuroinflammatory processes induce NPC death remain unclear. Microglia are key mediators of neuroinflammation and when activated to induce a pro-inflammatory state produce a number of factors that could affect NPC survival. Importantly, in the present study we demonstrate that tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) produced by lipopolysaccharide-activated microglia is necessary and sufficient to trigger apoptosis in mouse NPCs in vitro. Furthermore, we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces NPC apoptosis via a mitochondrial pathway regulated by the Bcl-2 family protein Bax. BH3-only proteins are known to play a key role in regulating Bax activation and we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces the expression of the BH3-only family member Puma in NPCs via an NF-κB-dependent mechanism. Specifically, we show that NF-κB is activated in NPCs treated with conditioned media from activated microglia and that Puma induction and NPC apoptosis is blocked by the NF-κB inhibitor BAY-117082. Importantly, we have determined that NPC apoptosis induced by activated microglia-derived TNFα is attenuated in Puma-deficient NPCs, indicating that Puma induction is required for NPC death. Consistent with this, we demonstrate that Puma-deficient NPCs exhibit an ∼13-fold increase in survival as compared with wild-type NPCs following transplantation into the inflammatory environment of the injured spinal cord in vivo. In summary, we have identified a key signaling pathway that regulates neuroinflammation induced apoptosis

  7. Microglia-derived TNFα induces apoptosis in neural precursor cells via transcriptional activation of the Bcl-2 family member Puma

    PubMed Central

    Guadagno, J; Xu, X; Karajgikar, M; Brown, A; Cregan, S P

    2013-01-01

    Neuroinflammation is a common feature of acute neurological conditions such as stroke and spinal cord injury, as well as neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Previous studies have demonstrated that acute neuroinflammation can adversely affect the survival of neural precursor cells (NPCs) and thereby limit the capacity for regeneration and repair. However, the mechanisms by which neuroinflammatory processes induce NPC death remain unclear. Microglia are key mediators of neuroinflammation and when activated to induce a pro-inflammatory state produce a number of factors that could affect NPC survival. Importantly, in the present study we demonstrate that tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) produced by lipopolysaccharide-activated microglia is necessary and sufficient to trigger apoptosis in mouse NPCs in vitro. Furthermore, we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces NPC apoptosis via a mitochondrial pathway regulated by the Bcl-2 family protein Bax. BH3-only proteins are known to play a key role in regulating Bax activation and we demonstrate that microglia-derived TNFα induces the expression of the BH3-only family member Puma in NPCs via an NF-κB-dependent mechanism. Specifically, we show that NF-κB is activated in NPCs treated with conditioned media from activated microglia and that Puma induction and NPC apoptosis is blocked by the NF-κB inhibitor BAY-117082. Importantly, we have determined that NPC apoptosis induced by activated microglia-derived TNFα is attenuated in Puma-deficient NPCs, indicating that Puma induction is required for NPC death. Consistent with this, we demonstrate that Puma-deficient NPCs exhibit an ∼13-fold increase in survival as compared with wild-type NPCs following transplantation into the inflammatory environment of the injured spinal cord in vivo. In summary, we have identified a key signaling pathway that regulates neuroinflammation induced apoptosis

  8. Phase locked neural activity in the human brainstem predicts preference for musical consonance

    PubMed Central

    Bones, Oliver; Hopkins, Kathryn; Krishnan, Ananthanarayan; Plack, Christopher J.

    2014-01-01

    When musical notes are combined to make a chord, the closeness of fit of the combined spectrum to a single harmonic series (the ‘harmonicity’ of the chord) predicts the perceived consonance (how pleasant and stable the chord sounds; McDermott, Lehr, & Oxenham, 2010). The distinction between consonance and dissonance is central to Western musical form. Harmonicity is represented in the temporal firing patterns of populations of brainstem neurons. The current study investigates the role of brainstem temporal coding of harmonicity in the perception of consonance. Individual preference for consonant over dissonant chords was measured using a rating scale for pairs of simultaneous notes. In order to investigate the effects of cochlear interactions, notes were presented in two ways: both notes to both ears or each note to different ears. The electrophysiological frequency following response (FFR), reflecting sustained neural activity in the brainstem synchronised to the stimulus, was also measured. When both notes were presented to both ears the perceptual distinction between consonant and dissonant chords was stronger than when the notes were presented to different ears. In the condition in which both notes were presented to the both ears additional low-frequency components, corresponding to difference tones resulting from nonlinear cochlear processing, were observable in the FFR effectively enhancing the neural harmonicity of consonant chords but not dissonant chords. Suppressing the cochlear envelope component of the FFR also suppressed the additional frequency components. This suggests that, in the case of consonant chords, difference tones generated by interactions between notes in the cochlea enhance the perception of consonance. Furthermore, individuals with a greater distinction between consonant and dissonant chords in the FFR to individual harmonics had a stronger preference for consonant over dissonant chords. Overall, the results provide compelling

  9. Analytically tractable studies of traveling waves of activity in integrate-and-fire neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jie; Osan, Remus

    2016-05-01

    In contrast to other large-scale network models for propagation of electrical activity in neural tissue that have no analytical solutions for their dynamics, we show that for a specific class of integrate and fire neural networks the acceleration depends quadratically on the instantaneous speed of the activity propagation. We use this property to analytically compute the network spike dynamics and to highlight the emergence of a natural time scale for the evolution of the traveling waves. These results allow us to examine other applications of this model such as the effect that a nonconductive gap of tissue has on further activity propagation. Furthermore we show that activity propagation also depends on local conditions for other more general connectivity functions, by converting the evolution equations for network dynamics into a low-dimensional system of ordinary differential equations. This approach greatly enhances our intuition into the mechanisms of the traveling waves evolution and significantly reduces the simulation time for this class of models.

  10. Emergence of spatially heterogeneous burst suppression in a neural field model of electrocortical activity

    PubMed Central

    Bojak, Ingo; Stoyanov, Zhivko V.; Liley, David T. J.

    2015-01-01

    Burst suppression in the electroencephalogram (EEG) is a well-described phenomenon that occurs during deep anesthesia, as well as in a variety of congenital and acquired brain insults. Classically it is thought of as spatially synchronous, quasi-periodic bursts of high amplitude EEG separated by low amplitude activity. However, its characterization as a “global brain state” has been challenged by recent results obtained with intracranial electrocortigraphy. Not only does it appear that burst suppression activity is highly asynchronous across cortex, but also that it may occur in isolated regions of circumscribed spatial extent. Here we outline a realistic neural field model for burst suppression by adding a slow process of synaptic resource depletion and recovery, which is able to reproduce qualitatively the empirically observed features during general anesthesia at the whole cortex level. Simulations reveal heterogeneous bursting over the model cortex and complex spatiotemporal dynamics during simulated anesthetic action, and provide forward predictions of neuroimaging signals for subsequent empirical comparisons and more detailed characterization. Because burst suppression corresponds to a dynamical end-point of brain activity, theoretically accounting for its spatiotemporal emergence will vitally contribute to efforts aimed at clarifying whether a common physiological trajectory is induced by the actions of general anesthetic agents. We have taken a first step in this direction by showing that a neural field model can qualitatively match recent experimental data that indicate spatial differentiation of burst suppression activity across cortex. PMID:25767438

  11. Right hemisphere neural activations in the recall of waking fantasies and of dreams.

    PubMed

    Benedetti, Francesco; Poletti, Sara; Radaelli, Daniele; Ranieri, Rebecca; Genduso, Valeria; Cavallotti, Simone; Castelnovo, Anna; Smeraldi, Enrico; Scarone, Silvio; D'Agostino, Armando

    2015-10-01

    The story-like organization of dreams is characterized by a pervasive bizarreness of events and actions that resembles psychotic thought, and largely exceeds that observed in normal waking fantasies. Little is known about the neural correlates of the confabulatory narrative construction of dreams. In this study, dreams, fantasies elicited by ambiguous pictorial stimuli, and non-imaginative first- and third-person narratives from healthy participants were recorded, and were then studied for brain blood oxygen level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging on a 3.0-Tesla scanner while listening to their own narrative reports and attempting a retrieval of the corresponding experience. In respect to non-bizarre reports of daytime activities, the script-driven recall of dreams and fantasies differentially activated a right hemisphere network including areas in the inferior frontal gyrus, and superior and middle temporal gyrus. Neural responses were significantly greater for fantasies than for dreams in all regions, and inversely proportional to the degree of bizarreness observed in narrative reports. The inferior frontal gyrus, superior and middle temporal gyrus have been implicated in the semantic activation, integration and selection needed to build a coherent story representation and to resolve semantic ambiguities; in deductive and inferential reasoning; in self- and other-perspective taking, theory of mind, moral and autobiographical reasoning. Their degree of activation could parallel the level of logical robustness or inconsistency experienced when integrating information and mental representations in the process of building fantasy and dream narratives. PMID:25871325

  12. Telencephalic neural activation following passive avoidance learning in a terrestrial toad.

    PubMed

    Puddington, Martín M; Daneri, M Florencia; Papini, Mauricio R; Muzio, Rubén N

    2016-12-15

    The present study explores passive avoidance learning and its neural basis in toads (Rhinella arenarum). In Experiment 1, two groups of toads learned to move from a lighted compartment into a dark compartment. After responding, animals in the experimental condition were exposed to an 800-mM strongly hypertonic NaCl solution that leads to weight loss. Control animals received exposure to a 300-mM slightly hypertonic NaCl solution that leads to neither weight gain nor loss. After 10 daily acquisition trials, animals in the experimental group showed significantly longer latency to enter the dark compartment. Additionally, 10 daily trials in which both groups received the 300-mM NaCl solution after responding eliminated this group effect. Thus, experimental animals showed gradual acquisition and extinction of a passive avoidance respond. Experiment 2 replicated the gradual acquisition effect, but, after the last trial, animals were sacrificed and neural activation was assessed in five brain regions using AgNOR staining for nucleoli-an index of brain activity. Higher activation in the experimental animals, relative to controls, was observed in the amygdala and striatum. Group differences in two other regions, lateral pallium and septum, were borderline, but nonsignificant, whereas group differences in the medial pallium were nonsignificant. These preliminary results suggest that a striatal-amygdala activation could be a key component of the brain circuit controlling passive avoidance learning in amphibians. The results are discussed in relation to the results of analogous experiments with other vertebrates.

  13. Analytically tractable studies of traveling waves of activity in integrate-and-fire neural networks.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jie; Osan, Remus

    2016-05-01

    In contrast to other large-scale network models for propagation of electrical activity in neural tissue that have no analytical solutions for their dynamics, we show that for a specific class of integrate and fire neural networks the acceleration depends quadratically on the instantaneous speed of the activity propagation. We use this property to analytically compute the network spike dynamics and to highlight the emergence of a natural time scale for the evolution of the traveling waves. These results allow us to examine other applications of this model such as the effect that a nonconductive gap of tissue has on further activity propagation. Furthermore we show that activity propagation also depends on local conditions for other more general connectivity functions, by converting the evolution equations for network dynamics into a low-dimensional system of ordinary differential equations. This approach greatly enhances our intuition into the mechanisms of the traveling waves evolution and significantly reduces the simulation time for this class of models.

  14. Right hemisphere neural activations in the recall of waking fantasies and of dreams.

    PubMed

    Benedetti, Francesco; Poletti, Sara; Radaelli, Daniele; Ranieri, Rebecca; Genduso, Valeria; Cavallotti, Simone; Castelnovo, Anna; Smeraldi, Enrico; Scarone, Silvio; D'Agostino, Armando

    2015-10-01

    The story-like organization of dreams is characterized by a pervasive bizarreness of events and actions that resembles psychotic thought, and largely exceeds that observed in normal waking fantasies. Little is known about the neural correlates of the confabulatory narrative construction of dreams. In this study, dreams, fantasies elicited by ambiguous pictorial stimuli, and non-imaginative first- and third-person narratives from healthy participants were recorded, and were then studied for brain blood oxygen level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging on a 3.0-Tesla scanner while listening to their own narrative reports and attempting a retrieval of the corresponding experience. In respect to non-bizarre reports of daytime activities, the script-driven recall of dreams and fantasies differentially activated a right hemisphere network including areas in the inferior frontal gyrus, and superior and middle temporal gyrus. Neural responses were significantly greater for fantasies than for dreams in all regions, and inversely proportional to the degree of bizarreness observed in narrative reports. The inferior frontal gyrus, superior and middle temporal gyrus have been implicated in the semantic activation, integration and selection needed to build a coherent story representation and to resolve semantic ambiguities; in deductive and inferential reasoning; in self- and other-perspective taking, theory of mind, moral and autobiographical reasoning. Their degree of activation could parallel the level of logical robustness or inconsistency experienced when integrating information and mental representations in the process of building fantasy and dream narratives.

  15. Neuronal avalanches of a self-organized neural network with active-neuron-dominant structure.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiumin; Small, Michael

    2012-06-01

    Neuronal avalanche is a spontaneous neuronal activity which obeys a power-law distribution of population event sizes with an exponent of -3/2. It has been observed in the superficial layers of cortex both in vivo and in vitro. In this paper, we analyze the information transmission of a novel self-organized neural network with active-neuron-dominant structure. Neuronal avalanches can be observed in this network with appropriate input intensity. We find that the process of network learning via spike-timing dependent plasticity dramatically increases the complexity of network structure, which is finally self-organized to be active-neuron-dominant connectivity. Both the entropy of activity patterns and the complexity of their resulting post-synaptic inputs are maximized when the network dynamics are propagated as neuronal avalanches. This emergent topology is beneficial for information transmission with high efficiency and also could be responsible for the large information capacity of this network compared with alternative archetypal networks with different neural connectivity.

  16. Tracking cortical entrainment in neural activity: auditory processes in human temporal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Thwaites, Andrew; Nimmo-Smith, Ian; Fonteneau, Elisabeth; Patterson, Roy D.; Buttery, Paula; Marslen-Wilson, William D.

    2015-01-01

    A primary objective for cognitive neuroscience is to identify how features of the sensory environment are encoded in neural activity. Current auditory models of loudness perception can be used to make detailed predictions about the neural activity of the cortex as an individual listens to speech. We used two such models (loudness-sones and loudness-phons), varying in their psychophysiological realism, to predict the instantaneous loudness contours produced by 480 isolated words. These two sets of 480 contours were used to search for electrophysiological evidence of loudness processing in whole-brain recordings of electro- and magneto-encephalographic (EMEG) activity, recorded while subjects listened to the words. The technique identified a bilateral sequence of loudness processes, predicted by the more realistic loudness-sones model, that begin in auditory cortex at ~80 ms and subsequently reappear, tracking progressively down the superior temporal sulcus (STS) at lags from 230 to 330 ms. The technique was then extended to search for regions sensitive to the fundamental frequency (F0) of the voiced parts of the speech. It identified a bilateral F0 process in auditory cortex at a lag of ~90 ms, which was not followed by activity in STS. The results suggest that loudness information is being used to guide the analysis of the speech stream as it proceeds beyond auditory cortex down STS toward the temporal pole. PMID:25713530

  17. Neural activation in speech production and reading aloud in native and non-native languages.

    PubMed

    Berken, Jonathan A; Gracco, Vincent L; Chen, Jen-Kai; Soles, Jennika; Watkins, Kate E; Baum, Shari; Callahan, Megan; Klein, Denise

    2015-05-15

    We used fMRI to investigate neural activation in reading aloud in bilinguals differing in age of acquisition. Three groups were compared: French-English bilinguals who acquired two languages from birth (simultaneous), French-English bilinguals who learned their L2 after the age of 5 years (sequential), and English-speaking monolinguals. While the bilingual groups contrasted in age of acquisition, they were matched for language proficiency, although sequential bilinguals produced speech with a less native-like accent in their L2 than in their L1. Simultaneous bilinguals activated similar brain regions to an equivalent degree when reading in their two languages. In contrast, sequential bilinguals more strongly activated areas related to speech-motor control and orthographic to phonological mapping, the left inferior frontal gyrus, left premotor cortex, and left fusiform gyrus, when reading aloud in L2 compared to L1. In addition, the activity in these regions showed a significant positive correlation with age of acquisition. The results provide evidence for the engagement of overlapping neural substrates for processing two languages when acquired in native context from birth. However, it appears that the maturation of certain brain regions for both speech production and phonological encoding is limited by a sensitive period for L2 acquisition regardless of language proficiency.

  18. Bioimpedance Harmonic Analysis as a Diagnostic Tool to Assess Regional Circulation and Neural Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mudraya, I. S.; Revenko, S. V.; Khodyreva, L. A.; Markosyan, T. G.; Dudareva, A. A.; Ibragimov, A. R.; Romich, V. V.; Kirpatovsky, V. I.

    2013-04-01

    The novel technique based on harmonic analysis of bioimpedance microvariations with original hard- and software complex incorporating a high-resolution impedance converter was used to assess the neural activity and circulation in human urinary bladder and penis in patients with pelvic pain, erectile dysfunction, and overactive bladder. The therapeutic effects of shock wave therapy and Botulinum toxin detrusor injections were evaluated quantitatively according to the spectral peaks at low 0.1 Hz frequency (M for Mayer wave), respiratory (R) and cardiac (C) rhythms with their harmonics. Enhanced baseline regional neural activity identified according to M and R peaks was found to be presumably sympathetic in pelvic pain patients, and parasympathetic - in patients with overactive bladder. Total pulsatile activity and pulsatile resonances found in the bladder as well as in the penile spectrum characterised regional circulation and vascular tone. The abnormal spectral parameters characteristic of the patients with genitourinary diseases shifted to the norm in the cases of efficient therapy. Bioimpedance harmonic analysis seems to be a potent tool to assess regional peculiarities of circulatory and autonomic nervous activity in the course of patient treatment.

  19. Inhibition of Protease-Activated Receptor 1 Does not Affect Dendritic Homeostasis of Cultured Mouse Dentate Granule Cells.

    PubMed

    Schuldt, Gerlind; Galanis, Christos; Strehl, Andreas; Hick, Meike; Schiener, Sabine; Lenz, Maximilian; Deller, Thomas; Maggio, Nicola; Vlachos, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Protease-activated receptors (PARs) are widely expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). While a firm link between PAR1-activation and functional synaptic and intrinsic neuronal properties exists, studies on the role of PAR1 in neural structural plasticity are scarce. The physiological function of PAR1 in the brain remains not well understood. We here sought to determine whether prolonged pharmacologic PAR1-inhibition affects dendritic morphologies of hippocampal neurons. To address this question we employed live-cell microscopy of mouse dentate granule cell dendrites in 3-week old entorhino-hippocampal slice cultures prepared from Thy1-GFP mice. A subset of cultures were treated with the PAR1-inhibitor SCH79797 (1 μM; up to 3 weeks). No major effects of PAR1-inhibition on static and dynamic parameters of dentate granule cell dendrites were detected under control conditions. Granule cells of PAR1-deficient slice cultures showed unaltered dendritic morphologies, dendritic spine densities and excitatory synaptic strength. Furthermore, we report that PAR1-inhibition does not prevent dendritic retraction following partial deafferentation in vitro. Consistent with this finding, no major changes in PAR1-mRNA levels were detected in the denervated dentate gyrus (DG). We conclude that neural PAR1 is not involved in regulating the steady-state dynamics or deafferentation-induced adaptive changes of cultured dentate granule cell dendrites. These results indicate that drugs targeting neural PAR1-signals may not affect the stability and structural integrity of neuronal networks in healthy brain regions. PMID:27378862

  20. Inhibition of Protease-Activated Receptor 1 Does not Affect Dendritic Homeostasis of Cultured Mouse Dentate Granule Cells

    PubMed Central

    Schuldt, Gerlind; Galanis, Christos; Strehl, Andreas; Hick, Meike; Schiener, Sabine; Lenz, Maximilian; Deller, Thomas; Maggio, Nicola; Vlachos, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Protease-activated receptors (PARs) are widely expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). While a firm link between PAR1-activation and functional synaptic and intrinsic neuronal properties exists, studies on the role of PAR1 in neural structural plasticity are scarce. The physiological function of PAR1 in the brain remains not well understood. We here sought to determine whether prolonged pharmacologic PAR1-inhibition affects dendritic morphologies of hippocampal neurons. To address this question we employed live-cell microscopy of mouse dentate granule cell dendrites in 3-week old entorhino-hippocampal slice cultures prepared from Thy1-GFP mice. A subset of cultures were treated with the PAR1-inhibitor SCH79797 (1 μM; up to 3 weeks). No major effects of PAR1-inhibition on static and dynamic parameters of dentate granule cell dendrites were detected under control conditions. Granule cells of PAR1-deficient slice cultures showed unaltered dendritic morphologies, dendritic spine densities and excitatory synaptic strength. Furthermore, we report that PAR1-inhibition does not prevent dendritic retraction following partial deafferentation in vitro. Consistent with this finding, no major changes in PAR1-mRNA levels were detected in the denervated dentate gyrus (DG). We conclude that neural PAR1 is not involved in regulating the steady-state dynamics or deafferentation-induced adaptive changes of cultured dentate granule cell dendrites. These results indicate that drugs targeting neural PAR1-signals may not affect the stability and structural integrity of neuronal networks in healthy brain regions. PMID:27378862

  1. Imaging Neural Activity Using Thy1-GCaMP Transgenic mice

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Qian; Cichon, Joseph; Wang, Wenting; Qiu, Li; Lee, Seok-Jin R.; Campbell, Nolan R.; DeStefino, Nicholas; Goard, Michael J.; Fu, Zhanyan; Yasuda, Ryohei; Looger, Loren L.; Arenkiel, Benjamin R.; Gan, Wen-Biao; Feng, Guoping

    2014-01-01

    Summary The ability to chronically monitor neuronal activity in the living brain is essential for understanding the organization and function of the nervous system. The genetically encoded green fluorescent protein based calcium sensor GCaMP provides a powerful tool for detecting calcium transients in neuronal somata, processes, and synapses that are triggered by neuronal activities. Here we report the generation and characterization of transgenic mice that express improved GCaMPs in various neuronal subpopulations under the control of the Thy1 promoter. In vitro and in vivo studies show that calcium transients induced by spontaneous and stimulus-evoked neuronal activities can be readily detected at the level of individual cells and synapses in acute brain slices, as well as chronically in awake behaving animals. These GCaMP transgenic mice allow investigation of activity patterns in defined neuronal populations in the living brain, and will greatly facilitate dissecting complex structural and functional relationships of neural networks. PMID:23083733

  2. Social status alters defeat-induced neural activation in Syrian hamsters

    PubMed Central

    Morrison, Kathleen E.; Curry, Daniel W.; Cooper, Matthew A.

    2012-01-01

    While exposure to social stress leads to increased depression-like and anxiety-like behavior, some individuals are more vulnerable than others to these stress-induced changes in behavior. Prior social experience is one factor that can modulate how individuals respond to stressful events. In this study we investigated whether experience-dependent resistance to the behavioral consequences of social defeat was associated with a specific pattern of neural activation. We paired weight-matched male Syrian hamsters in daily aggressive encounters for two weeks, during which they formed a stable dominance relationship. We also included controls that were exposed to an empty cage each day for two weeks. Twenty-four hours after the final pairing or empty cage exposure, half of the subjects were socially defeated in 3, 5-min encounters, while the others were not socially defeated. Twenty-four hours after social defeat, animals were tested for conditioned defeat in a 5-min social interaction test with a non-aggressive intruder. We collected brains following social defeat and processed tissue for c-Fos immunoreactivity. We found that dominants were more likely to counter-attack the resident aggressor during social defeat than were subordinates, and they showed less submissive and defensive behavior at conditioned defeat testing compared to subordinates. Also, social status was associated with distinct patterns of defeat-induced neural activation in select brain regions including the amygdala, prefrontal cortex, hypothalamus, and lateral septum. Our results indicate that social status is an important form of prior experience that predicts both initial coping style and the degree of resistance to social defeat. Further, the differences in defeat-induced neural activation suggest possible brain regions that may control resistance to conditioned defeat in dominant individuals. PMID:22433296

  3. Social status alters defeat-induced neural activation in Syrian hamsters.

    PubMed

    Morrison, K E; Curry, D W; Cooper, M A

    2012-05-17

    Although exposure to social stress leads to increased depression-like and anxiety-like behavior, some individuals are more vulnerable than others to these stress-induced changes in behavior. Prior social experience is one factor that can modulate how individuals respond to stressful events. In this study, we investigated whether experience-dependent resistance to the behavioral consequences of social defeat was associated with a specific pattern of neural