Science posts

See science posts on page 53 below.

    • 2000
    • J.C Horvitz et al
    • Mesolimbocortical and nigrostriatal dopamine responses to salient non-reward events
    • While it has previously been assumed that mesolimbic dopamine neurons carry a reward signal, recent data from single-unit, microdialysis and voltammetry studies suggest that these neurons respond to a large category of salient and arousing events, including appetitive, aversive, high intensity, and novel stimuli. Elevations in dopamine release within mesolimbic, mesocortical and nigrostriatal target sites coincide with arousal, and the increase in dopamine activity within target sites modulates a number of behavioral functions. However, because dopamine neurons respond to a category of salient events that extend beyond that of reward stimuli, dopamine levels are not likely to code for the reward value of encountered events. The paper (i) examines evidence showing that dopamine neurons respond to salient and arousing change in environmental conditions, regardless of the motivational valence of that change, and (ii) asks how this might shape our thinking about the role of dopamine s..
    • 2004
    • Mark Jung-Beeman et al
    • Neural Activity When People Solve Verbal Problems with Insight
    • 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 ..
    • 2014
    • Sharon Gilaie-Dotan et al
    • Ventral aspect of the visual form pathway is not critical for the perception of biological motion
    • Identifying the movements of those around us is fundamental for many daily activities, such as recognizing actions, detecting predators, and interacting with others socially. A key question concerns the neurobiological substrates underlying biological motion perception. Although the ventral “form” visual cortex is standardly activated by biologically moving stimuli, whether these activations are functionally critical for biological motion perception or are epiphenomenal remains unknown. To address this question, we examined whether focal damage to regions of the ventral visual cortex, resulting in significant deficits in form perception, adversely affects biological motion perception. Six patients with damage to the ventral cortex were tested with sensitive point-light display paradigms. All patients were able to recognize unmasked point-light displays and their perceptual thresholds were not significantly different from those of three different control groups, one of which comprised..
    • 2014
    • Richard E. Boyatzis et al
    • Antagonistic neural networks underlying differentiated leadership roles
    • The emergence of two distinct leadership roles, the task leader and the socio-emotional leader, has been documented in the leadership literature since the 1950s. Recent research in neuroscience suggests that the division between task-oriented and socio-emotional-oriented roles derives from a fundamental feature of our neurobiology: an antagonistic relationship between two large-scale cortical networks – the task-positive network (TPN) and the default mode network (DMN). Neural activity in TPN tends to inhibit activity in the DMN, and vice versa. The TPN is important for problem solving, focusing of attention, making decisions, and control of action. The DMN plays a central role in emotional self-awareness, social cognition, and ethical decision making. It is also strongly linked to creativity and openness to new ideas. Because activation of the TPN tends to suppress activity in the DMN, an over-emphasis on task-oriented leadership may prove deleterious to social and emotion..
    • 2010
    • R. L. Carhart-Harris et al
    • The default-mode, ego-functions and free-energy: a neurobiological account of Freudian ideas
    • This article explores the notion that Freudian constructs may have neurobiological substrates. Specifically, we propose that Freud’s descriptions of the primary and secondary processes are consistent with self-organized activity in hierarchical cortical systems and that his descriptions of the ego are consistent with the functions of the default-mode and its reciprocal exchanges with subordinate brain systems. This neurobiological account rests on a view of the brain as a hierarchical inference or Helmholtz machine. In this view, large-scale intrinsic networks occupy supraordinate levels of hierarchical brain systems that try to optimize their representation of the sensorium. This optimization has been formulated as minimizing a free-energy; a process that is formally similar to the treatment of energy in Freudian formulations. We substantiate this synthesis by showing that Freud’s descriptions of the primary process are consistent with the phenomenology and neurophysiology of rapid ..
    • 2011
    • B. T. Thomas Yeo et al
    • The organization of the human cerebral cortex estimated by intrinsic functional connectivity
    • Information processing in the cerebral cortex involves interactions among distributed areas. Anatomical connectivity suggests that certain areas form local hierarchical relations such as within the visual system. Other connectivity patterns, particularly among association areas, suggest the presence of large-scale circuits without clear hierarchical relations. In this study the organization of networks in the human cerebrum was explored using resting-state functional connectivity MRI. Data from 1,000 subjects were registered using surface-based alignment. A clustering approach was employed to identify and replicate networks of functionally coupled regions across the cerebral cortex. The results revealed local networks confined to sensory and motor cortices as well as distributed networks of association regions. Within the sensory and motor cortices, functional connectivity followed topographic representations across adjacent areas. In association cortex, the connectivity patterns oft..
    • 2007
    • Jeffrey C. Cooper et al
    • Valence and salience contribute to nucleus accumbens activation
    • Different accounts of nucleus accumbens (NAcc) function have emphasized its role in representing either valence or salience during incentive anticipation. In an event-related FMRI experiment, we in- dependently manipulated valence and salience by cuing participants to anticipate certain and uncertain monetary gains and losses. NAcc activation correlated with both valence and salience. On trials with certain outcomes, NAcc activation increased for anticipated gains and decreased for anticipated losses. On trials with uncertain outcomes, NAcc activation increased for both anticipated gains and losses but did not differ between them. These findings suggest that NAcc activation separately represents both valence and salience, consistent with its hypothesized role in appetitive motivation.
    • 2007
    • Jana Wrase et al
    • Different neural systems adjust motor behavior in response to reward and punishment
    • Individuals use the outcomes of their actions to adjust future behavior. However, it remains unclear whether the same neural circuits are used to adjust behavior due to rewarding and punishing outcomes. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and a reward-providing reaction time task to investigate the adaptation of a simple motor response following four different outcomes (delivery versus omission and monetary gain versus loss). We found that activation in the thalamus and insula predicted adjustments of motor responses due to outcomes that were cued and delivered, whereas activation in the ventral striatum predicted such adjustments when outcomes were cued but omitted. Further, activation of OFC predicted improvement after all punishing outcomes, independent of whether they were omitted rewards or delivered punishments. Finally, we found that activity in anterior cingulate predicted adjustment after delivered punishments and activity in dorsal striatum predicted a..
    • 2006
    • Zink CF et al
    • Human striatal activation reflects degree of stimulus saliency.
    • Salient stimuli are characterized by their capability to perturb and seize available cognitive resources. Although the striatum and its dopaminergic inputs respond to a variety of stimuli categorically defined as salient, including rewards, the relationship between striatal activity and saliency is not well understood. Specifically, it is unclear if the striatum responds in an all-or-none fashion to salient events or instead responds in a graded fashion to the degree of saliency associated with an event. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we measured activity in the brains of 20 participants performing a visual classification task in which they identified single digits as odd or even numbers. An auditory tone preceded each number, which was occasionally, and unexpectedly, substituted by a novel sound. The novel sounds varied in their ability to interrupt and reallocate cognitive resources (i.e., their saliency) as measured by a delay in reaction time to immediately subseque..
    • 2013
    • Gil Gonen-Yaacovi et al
    • Rostral and caudal prefrontal contribution to creativity: a meta-analysis of functional imaging data
    • Creativity is of central importance for human civilization, yet its neurocognitive bases are poorly understood. The aim of the present study was to integrate existing functional imaging data by using the meta-analysis approach. We reviewed 34 functional imaging studies that reported activation foci during tasks assumed to engage creative thinking in healthy adults. A coordinate-based meta-analysis using Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) first showed a set of predominantly left-hemispheric regions shared by the various creativity tasks examined. These regions included the caudal lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC), the medial and lateral rostral PFC, and the inferior parietal and posterior temporal cortices. Further analyses showed that tasks involving the combination of remote information (combination tasks) activated more anterior areas of the lateral PFC than tasks involving the free generation of unusual responses (unusual generation tasks), although both types of tasks shared ca..