168,426 research outputs found

    Addressing the selective role of distinct prefrontal areas in response suppression: A study with brain tumor patients

    Get PDF
    The diverging evidence for functional localization of response inhibition within the prefrontal cortex might be justified by the still unclear involvement of other intrinsically related cognitive processes like response selection and sustained attention. In this study, the main aim was to understand whether inhibitory impairments, previously found in patients with both left and right frontal lesions, could be better accounted for by assessing these potentially related cognitive processes. We tested 37 brain tumor patients with left prefrontal, right prefrontal and non-prefrontal lesions and a healthy control group on Go/No-Go and Foreperiod tasks. In both types of tasks inhibitory impairments are likely to cause false alarms, although additionally the former task requires response selection and the latter target detection abilities. Irrespective of the task context, patients with right prefrontal damage showed frequent Go and target omissions, probably due to sustained attention lapses. Left prefrontal patients, on the other hand, showed both Go and target omissions and high false alarm rates to No-Go and warning stimuli, suggesting a decisional rather than an inhibitory impairment. An exploratory whole-brain voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping analysis confirmed the association of left ventrolateral and dorsolateral prefrontal lesions with target discrimination failure, and right ventrolateral and medial prefrontal lesions with target detection failure. Results from this study show how left and right prefrontal areas, which previous research has linked to response inhibition, underlie broader cognitive control processes, particularly involved in response selection and target detection. Based on these findings, we suggest that successful inhibitory control relies on more than one functionally distinct process which, if assessed appropriately, might help us to better understand inhibitory impairments across different pathologies

    Strain-dependent variations in stress coping behavior are mediated by a 5-HT/GABA interaction within the prefrontal corticolimbic system

    Get PDF
    Background: Serotonin and γ- Aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmission is crucial in coping strategies. Methods: Here, using mice from 2 inbred strains widely exploited in behavioral neurochemistry, we investigated whether serotonin transmission in medial prefrontal cortex and GABA in basolateral amygdala determine strain-dependent liability to stress response and differences in coping. Results: C57BL/6J mice displayed greater immobility in the forced swimming test, higher serotonin outflow in medial prefrontal cortex, higher GABA outflow in basolateral amygdala induced by stress, and higher serotonin 1A receptor levels in medial prefrontal cortex accompanied by lower GABAb receptor levels in basolateral amygdala than DBA/2J mice. In assessing whether serotonin in medial prefrontal cortex determines GABA functioning in response to stress and passive coping behavior in C57BL/6J and DBA/2J mice, we observed that selective prefrontal serotonin depletion in C57BL/6J and DBA/2J reduced stress-induced GABA outflow in basolateral amygdala and immobility in the forced swimming test. Conclusions: These results show that strain-dependent prefrontal corticolimbic serotonin/GABA regulation determines the strain differences in stress-coping behavior in the forced swimming test and point to a role of a specific neuronal system in genetic susceptibility to stress that opens up new prospects for innovative therapies for stress disorders

    Prolonged maturation of prefrontal white matter in chimpanzees

    Get PDF
    Delayed maturation in the prefrontal cortex, a brain region associated with complex cognitive processing, has been proposed to be specific to humans. However, we found, using a longitudinal design, that prefrontal white matter volume in chimpanzees increased gradually with age, and the increase appears to continue beyond the onset of puberty, as in humans. This provides the first evidence for a prolonged period of prefrontal connection elaboration in great apes

    Biasing the perception of ambiguous vocal affect: a TMS study on frontal asymmetry

    Get PDF
    Several sources of evidence point toward a link between asymmetry of prefrontal brain activity and approach–withdrawal tendencies. Here, we tested the causal nature of this link and examined if the categorization of an ambiguous approach- or withdrawal-related vocal signal can be biased by manipulating left and right frontal neural activity. We used voice morphing of affective non-verbal vocalizations to create individually tailored affectively ambiguous stimuli on an Anger–Fear continuum—two emotions that represent extremes on the approach–withdrawal dimension. We tested perception of these stimuli after 10 min of low-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation over left or right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex or over the vertex (control), a technique that has transient inhibitory effects on the targeted brain region. As expected, ambiguous stimuli were more likely perceived as expressing Anger (approach) than Fear (withdrawal) after right prefrontal compared with left prefrontal or control stimulation. These results provide the first evidence that the manipulation of asymmetrical activity in prefrontal cortex can change the explicit categorization of ambiguous emotional signals

    Reduction in Phencyclidine Induced Sensorimotor Gating Deficits in the Rat Following Increased System Xc − Activity in the Medial Prefrontal Cortex

    Get PDF
    Rationale: Aspects of schizophrenia, including deficits in sensorimotor gating, have been linked to glutamate dysfunction and/or oxidative stress in the prefrontal cortex. System xc −, a cystine–glutamate antiporter, is a poorly understood mechanism that contributes to both cellular antioxidant capacity and glutamate homeostasis. Objectives: Our goal was to determine whether increased system xc − activity within the prefrontal cortex would normalize a rodent measure of sensorimotor gating. Methods: In situ hybridization was used to map messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of xCT, the active subunit of system xc −, in the prefrontal cortex. Prepulse inhibition was used to measure sensorimotor gating; deficits in prepulse inhibition were produced using phencyclidine (0.3–3 mg/kg, sc). N-Acetylcysteine (10–100 μM) and the system xc − inhibitor (S)-4-carboxyphenylglycine (CPG, 0.5 μM) were used to increase and decrease system xc − activity, respectively. The uptake of 14C-cystine into tissue punches obtained from the prefrontal cortex was used to assay system xc − activity. Results: The expression of xCT mRNA in the prefrontal cortex was most prominent in a lateral band spanning primarily the prelimbic cortex. Although phencyclidine did not alter the uptake of 14C-cystine in prefrontal cortical tissue punches, intraprefrontal cortical infusion of N-acetylcysteine (10–100 μM) significantly reduced phencyclidine- (1.5 mg/kg, sc) induced deficits in prepulse inhibition. N-Acetylcysteine was without effect when coinfused with CPG (0.5 μM), indicating an involvement of system xc −. Conclusions: These results indicate that phencyclidine disrupts sensorimotor gating through system xc − independent mechanisms, but that increasing cystine–glutamate exchange in the prefrontal cortex is sufficient to reduce behavioral deficits produced by phencyclidine

    Speed-accuracy strategy regulations in prefrontal tumor patients

    Get PDF
    The ability to flexibly switch between fast and accurate decisions is crucial in everyday life. Recent neuroimaging evidence suggested that left lateral prefrontal cortex plays a role in switching from a quick response strategy to an accurate one. However, the causal role of the left prefrontal cortex in this particular, non-verbal, strategy switch has never been demonstrated. To fill this gap, we administered a perceptual decision-making task to neuro-oncological prefrontal patients, in which the requirement to be quick or accurate changed randomly on a trial-by-trial basis. To directly assess hemispheric asymmetries in speed-accuracy regulation, patients were tested a few days before and a few days after surgical excision of a brain tumor involving either the left (N=13) or the right (N=12) lateral frontal brain region. A group of age- and education-matched healthy controls was also recruited. To gain more insight on the component processes implied in the task, performance data (accuracy and speed) were not only analyzed separately but also submitted to a diffusion model analysis. The main findings indicated that the left prefrontal patients were impaired in appropriately adopting stricter response criteria in speed-to-accuracy switching trials with respect to healthy controls and right prefrontal patients, who were not impaired in this condition. This study demonstrates that the prefrontal cortex in the left hemisphere is necessary for flexible behavioral regulations, in particular when setting stricter response criteria is required in order to successfully switch from a speedy strategy to an accurate one

    The detection of communicative signals directed at the self in infant prefrontal cortex

    Get PDF
    A precondition for successful communication between people is the detection of signals indicating the intention to communicate, such as eye contact or calling a person's name. In adults, establishing communication by eye contact or calling a person's name results in overlapping activity in right prefrontal cortex, suggesting that, regardless of modality, the intention to communicate is detected by the same brain region. We measured prefrontal cortex responses in 5-month-olds using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to examine the neural basis of detecting communicative signals across modalities in early development. Infants watched human faces that either signaled eye contact or directed their gaze away from the infant, and they also listened to voices that addressed them with their own name or another name. The results revealed that infants recruit adjacent but non-overlapping regions in the left dorsal prefrontal cortex when they process eye contact and own name. Moreover, infants that responded sensitively to eye contact in the one prefrontal region were also more likely to respond sensitively to their own name in the adjacent prefrontal region as revealed in a correlation analysis, suggesting that responding to communicative signals in these two regions might be functionally related. These NIRS results suggest that infants selectively process and attend to communicative signals directed at them. However, unlike adults, infants do not seem to recruit a common prefrontal region when processing communicative signals of different modalities. The implications of these findings for our understanding of infants’ developing communicative abilities are discussed

    When planning fails: Individual differences and error-related brain activity in problem solving.

    Get PDF
    The neuronal processes underlying correct and erroneous problem solving were studied in strong and weak problem-solvers using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). During planning, the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex was activated, and showed a linear relationship with the participants' performance level. A similar pattern emerged in right inferior parietal regions for all trials, and in anterior cingulate cortex for erroneously solved trials only. In the performance phase, when the pre-planned moves had to be executed by means of an fMRI-compatible computer mouse, the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex was again activated jointly with right parahippocampal cortex, and displayed a similar positive relationship with the participants' performance level. Incorrectly solved problems elicited stronger bilateral prefrontal and left inferior parietal activations than correctly solved trials. For both individual ability and trial-specific performance, our results thus demonstrate the crucial involvement of right prefrontal cortex in efficient visuospatial planning

    Glutamatergic Plasticity in Medial Prefrontal Cortex and Ventral Tegmental Area Following Extended-Access Cocaine Self-Administration

    Get PDF
    Glutamate signaling in prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area plays an important role in the molecular and behavioral plasticity associated with addiction to drugs of abuse. The current study investigated the expression and postsynaptic density redistribution of glutamate receptors and synaptic scaffolding proteins in dorsomedial and ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area after cocaine self-administration. After 14 days of extended-access (6 h/day) cocaine self-administration, rats were exposed to one of three withdrawal regimen for 10 days. Animals either stayed in home cages (Home), returned to self-administration boxes with the levers withdrawn (Box), or underwent extinction training (Extinction). Extinction training was associated with significant glutamatergic plasticity. In dorsomedial prefrontal cortex of the Extinction group, there was an increase in postsynaptic density GluR1, PSD95, and actin proteins; while postsynaptic density mGluR5 protein decreased and there was no change in NMDAR1, Homer1b/c, or PICK1 proteins. These changes were not observed in ventromedial prefrontal cortex or ventral tegmental area. In ventral tegmental area, Extinction training reversed the decreased postsynaptic density NMDAR1 protein in the Home and Box withdrawal groups. These data suggest that extinction of drug seeking is associated with selective glutamatergic plasticity in prefrontal cortex and ventral tegmental area that include modulation of receptor trafficking to postsynaptic density

    Reciprocal anatomical relationship between primary sensory and prefrontal cortices in the human brain

    Get PDF
    The human brain exhibits remarkable interindividual variability in cortical architecture. Despite extensive evidence for the behavioral consequences of such anatomical variability in individual cortical regions, it is unclear whether and how different cortical regions covary in morphology. Using a novel approach that combined noninvasive cortical functional mapping with whole-brain voxel-based morphometric analyses, we investigated the anatomical relationship between the functionally mapped visual cortices and other cortical structures in healthy humans. We found a striking anticorrelation between the gray matter volume of primary visual cortex and that of anterior prefrontal cortex, independent from individual differences in overall brain volume. Notably, this negative correlation formed along anatomically separate pathways, as the dorsal and ventral parts of primary visual cortex showed focal anticorrelation with the dorsolateral and ventromedial parts of anterior prefrontal cortex, respectively. Moreover, a similar inverse correlation was found between primary auditory cortex and anterior prefrontal cortex, but no anatomical relationship was observed between other visual cortices and anterior prefrontal cortex. Together, these findings indicate that an anatomical trade-off exists between primary sensory cortices and anterior prefrontal cortex as a possible general principle of human cortical organization. This new discovery challenges the traditional view that the sizes of different brain areas simply scale with overall brain size and suggests the existence of shared genetic or developmental factors that contributes to the formation of anatomically and functionally distant cortical regions
    corecore