WorldWideScience

Sample records for attention fear increases

  1. Emotional modulation of attention: fear increases but disgust reduces the attentional blink.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Vermeulen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It is well known that facial expressions represent important social cues. In humans expressing facial emotion, fear may be configured to maximize sensory exposure (e.g., increases visual input whereas disgust can reduce sensory exposure (e.g., decreases visual input. To investigate whether such effects also extend to the attentional system, we used the "attentional blink" (AB paradigm. Many studies have documented that the second target (T2 of a pair is typically missed when presented within a time window of about 200-500 ms from the first to-be-detected target (T1; i.e., the AB effect. It has recently been proposed that the AB effect depends on the efficiency of a gating system which facilitates the entrance of relevant input into working memory, while inhibiting irrelevant input. Following the inhibitory response on post T1 distractors, prolonged inhibition of the subsequent T2 is observed. In the present study, we hypothesized that processing facial expressions of emotion would influence this attentional gating. Fearful faces would increase but disgust faces would decrease inhibition of the second target. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We showed that processing fearful versus disgust faces has different effects on these attentional processes. We found that processing fear faces impaired the detection of T2 to a greater extent than did the processing disgust faces. This finding implies emotion-specific modulation of attention. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Based on the recent literature on attention, our finding suggests that processing fear-related stimuli exerts greater inhibitory responses on distractors relative to processing disgust-related stimuli. This finding is of particular interest for researchers examining the influence of emotional processing on attention and memory in both clinical and normal populations. For example, future research could extend upon the current study to examine whether inhibitory processes invoked by

  2. Blinded by fear? Prior exposure to fearful faces enhances attentional processing of task-irrelevant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berggren, Nick; Derakshan, Nazanin

    2013-01-01

    Threatening information has been shown to both capture attention and enhance sensory processing. Recent evidence has also suggested that exposure to fearful stimuli may enhance perceptual processing of subsequently presented information, as well as increase attentional capacity. However, these results are inconsistent with other findings that fearful stimuli reduce task-irrelevant distraction and improve selective attention. Here, we investigated the effect of prior exposure to fearful faces on performance in the Eriksen flanker task. Across experiments, fearful cues led to increased task-irrelevant distraction for items positioned across visual space, in contrast to other emotional expressions and inverted face items, and under conditions of attentional load. Findings support the view that fearful images enhance attentional capacity, allowing one to attend to as much visual information as possible when danger is implied. Conflicting findings on the effect of fear and selective attention are discussed. PMID:23510073

  3. Fear Conditioning Increases NREM Sleep

    OpenAIRE

    HELLMAN, Kevin; Abel, Ted

    2007-01-01

    To understand the role that sleep may play in memory storage, the authors investigated how fear conditioning affects sleep–wake states by performing electroencephalographic (EEG) and electromyographic recordings of C57BL/6J mice receiving fear conditioning, exposure to conditioning stimuli, or immediate shock treatment. This experimental design allowed us to examine the effects of associative learning, presentation of the conditioning stimuli, and presentation of the unconditioned stimuli on ...

  4. Attentional bias towards and away from fearful faces is modulated by developmental amygdala damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pishnamazi, Morteza; Tafakhori, Abbas; Loloee, Sogol; Modabbernia, Amirhossein; Aghamollaii, Vajiheh; Bahrami, Bahador; Winston, Joel S

    2016-08-01

    The amygdala is believed to play a major role in orienting attention towards threat-related stimuli. However, behavioral studies on amygdala-damaged patients have given inconsistent results-variously reporting decreased, persisted, and increased attention towards threat. Here we aimed to characterize the impact of developmental amygdala damage on emotion perception and the nature and time-course of spatial attentional bias towards fearful faces. We investigated SF, a 14-year-old with selective bilateral amygdala damage due to Urbach-Wiethe disease (UWD), and ten healthy controls. Participants completed a fear sensitivity questionnaire, facial expression classification task, and dot-probe task with fearful or neutral faces for spatial cueing. Three cue durations were used to assess the time-course of attentional bias. SF expressed significantly lower fear sensitivity, and showed a selective impairment in classifying fearful facial expressions. Despite this impairment in fear recognition, very brief (100 msec) fearful cues could orient SF's spatial attention. In healthy controls, the attentional bias emerged later and persisted longer. SF's attentional bias was due solely to facilitated engagement to fear, while controls showed the typical phenomenon of difficulty in disengaging from fear. Our study is the first to demonstrate the separable effects of amygdala damage on engagement and disengagement of spatial attention. The findings indicate that multiple mechanisms contribute in biasing attention towards fear, which vary in their timing and dependence on amygdala integrity. It seems that the amygdala is not essential for rapid attention to emotion, but probably has a role in assessment of biological relevance. PMID:27173975

  5. Incidental fear cues increase monetary loss aversion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulreich, Stefan; Gerhardt, Holger; Heekeren, Hauke R

    2016-04-01

    In many everyday decisions, people exhibit loss aversion-a greater sensitivity to losses relative to gains of equal size. Loss aversion is thought to be (at least partly) mediated by emotional-in particular, fear-related-processes. Decision research has shown that even incidental emotions, which are unrelated to the decision at hand, can influence decision making. The effect of incidental fear on loss aversion, however, is thus far unclear. In two studies, we experimentally investigated how incidental fear cues, presented during (Study 1) or before (Study 2) choices to accept or reject mixed gambles over real monetary stakes, influence monetary loss aversion. We find that the presentation of fearful faces, relative to the presentation of neutral faces, increased risk aversion-an effect that could be attributed to increased loss aversion. The size of this effect was moderated by psychopathic personality: Fearless dominance, in particular its interpersonal facet, but not self-centered impulsivity, attenuated the effect of incidental fear cues on loss aversion, consistent with reduced fear reactivity. Together, these results highlight the sensitivity of loss aversion to the affective context. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26595436

  6. Focusing on fear: Attentional disengagement from emotional faces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgiou, George A.; Bleakley, Cheryl; Hayward, James; Russo, Riccardo; Dutton, Kevin; Eltiti, Stacy; Fox, Elaine

    2007-01-01

    Evidence suggests that anxiety is associated with a shift of visual attention toward threatening stimuli in the environment, such as facial expressions (Mogg & Bradley, 1999). More recent evidence, however, indicates that anxiety may be better characterized by a failure to rapidly disengage the visual attention system away from threat-related facial expressions (Fox, Russo, Bowles, & Dutton, 2001). The present study further investigates this delayed disengagement hypothesis. Results show that high trait-anxious individuals, in contrast to low trait-anxious individuals, take longer to classify peripheral target letters when fearful facial expressions were presented at fixation relative to sad, happy, or neutral expressions. These findings demonstrate a specific tendency to dwell on fear-relevant stimuli, as opposed to negative information in general. These findings are considered from an evolutionary perspective and the possible role of delayed disengagement from threat in the maintenance of anxiety states is also discussed. PMID:17460752

  7. Fearful attention : Investigating event-related potentials in spider phobia

    OpenAIRE

    Norberg, Joakim

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies showed that emotional pictures capture attention. Further, this effect was decreased by manipulating spatial attention. In contrast, studies produced mixed findings for effects of perceptual load on attention to emotional pictures. Emotional pictures can be phobic or nonphobic. Because phobia might be an evolutionary adaption, it is possible that effects of phobic pictures on attention differ from effects of nonphobic emotional pictures. The present thesis aimed at investigat...

  8. Voluntary attention increases perceived spatial frequency

    OpenAIRE

    Abrams, Jared; Barbot, Antoine; Carrasco, Marisa

    2010-01-01

    Voluntary covert attention selects relevant sensory information for prioritized processing. The behavioral and neural consequences of such selection have been extensively documented, but its phenomenology has received little empirical investigation. Involuntary attention increases perceived spatial frequency (Gobell & Carrasco, 2005), but involuntary attention can differ from voluntary attention in its effects on performance in tasks mediated by spatial resolution (Yeshurun, Montagna, & Carra...

  9. Effect of Vicarious Fear Learning on Children’s Heart Rate Responses and Attentional Bias for Novel Animals

    OpenAIRE

    Reynolds, Gemma; Field, Andy P.; Askew, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Research with children has shown that vicarious learning can result in changes to 2 of Lang’s (1968) 3 anxiety response systems: subjective report and behavioral avoidance. The current study extended this research by exploring the effect of vicarious learning on physiological responses (Lang’s final response system) and attentional bias. The study used Askew and Field’s (2007) vicarious learning procedure and demonstrated fear-related increases in children’s cognitive, behavioral, and physiol...

  10. Attention-Deficit, Fear and Aggression in Iranian Preschool Students with Regard to Gender Differences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheikhzade, Mostafa; Assemi, Arezoo

    2013-01-01

    The cause of most adult psychopathologies or behavioural disorders can be traced back to childhood. In this study, we examine the attention-deficit, fear and aggression in Iran's preschool students in Oshnaviye city. In this analytical-descriptive study, 50 students were selected through stratified sampling method from 249 students. Data were…

  11. Fearful Faces Modulate Looking Duration and Attention Disengagement in 7-Month-Old Infants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltola, Mikko J.; Leppanen, Jukka M.; Palokangas, Tiina; Hietanen, Jari K.

    2008-01-01

    The present study investigated whether facial expressions modulate visual attention in 7-month-old infants. First, infants' looking duration to individually presented fearful, happy, and novel facial expressions was compared to looking duration to a control stimulus (scrambled face). The face with a novel expression was included to examine the…

  12. A review of current evidence for the causal impact of attentional bias on fear and anxiety

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    B. van Bockstaele; B. Verschuere; H. Tibboel; J. de Houwer; G. Crombez; E.H.W. Koster

    2014-01-01

    Prominent cognitive theories postulate that an attentional bias toward threatening information contributes to the etiology, maintenance, or exacerbation of fear and anxiety. In this review, we investigate to what extent these causal claims are supported by sound empirical evidence. Although differen

  13. Generalization of Conditioned Fear along a Dimension of Increasing Fear Intensity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunsmoor, Joseph E.; Mitroff, Stephen R.; LaBar, Kevin S.

    2009-01-01

    The present study investigated the extent to which fear generalization in humans is determined by the amount of fear intensity in nonconditioned stimuli relative to a perceptually similar conditioned stimulus. Stimuli consisted of graded emotionally expressive faces of the same identity morphed between neutral and fearful endpoints. Two…

  14. Impaired fear recognition and attentional set-shifting is associated with brain structural changes in alcoholic patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trick, Leanne; Kempton, Matthew J; Williams, Steven C R; Duka, Theodora

    2014-11-01

    Alcoholic patients with multiple detoxifications/relapses show cognitive and emotional deficits. We performed structural magnetic resonance imaging and examined performance on a cognitive flexibility task (intra-extradimensional set shift and reversal; IED). We also presented subjects with fearful, disgust and anger facial emotional expressions. Participants were abstaining, multiply detoxified (MDTx; n = 12) or singly detoxified patients (SDTx; n = 17) and social drinker controls (n = 31). Alcoholic patients were less able than controls to change their behavior in accordance with the changing of the rules in the IED and they were less accurate in recognizing fearful expressions in particular. They also showed lower gray matter volume compared with controls in frontal brain areas, including inferior frontal cortex (IFC) and insula that mediate emotional processing, inferior parietal lobule and medial frontal cortex that mediate attentional and motor planning processes, respectively. Impairments in performance and some of the regional decreases in gray matter were greater in MDTx. Gray matter volume in IFC in patients was negatively correlated with the number of detoxifications, whereas inferior parietal lobule was negatively correlated with the control over drinking score (impaired control over drinking questionnaire). Performance in IED was also negatively correlated with gray matter volume in IFC/BA47, whereas recognition of fearful faces was positively correlated with the IFC gray matter. Repeated episodes of detoxification from alcohol, related to severity of dependency, are coupled with altered brain structure in areas of emotional regulation, attention and motor planning. Such changes may confer increased inability to switch behavior according to environmental demands and social incompetence, contributing to relapse. PMID:25123156

  15. Investigating the efficacy of attention bias modification in reducing high spider fear: The role of individual differences in initial bias

    OpenAIRE

    Fox, E; Zougkou, K; Ashwin, C; Cahill, S

    2015-01-01

    Background and objectives Attention Bias Modification (ABM) targets attention bias (AB) towards threat and is a potential therapeutic intervention for anxiety. The current study investigated whether initial AB (towards or away from spider images) influenced the effectiveness of ABM in spider fear. Methods AB was assessed with an attentional probe task consisting of spider and neutral images presented simultaneously followed by a probe in spider congruent or spider incongruent loca...

  16. Attention Biases Towards and Away from Threat Mark the Relation between Early Dysregulated Fear and the Later Emergence of Social Withdrawal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales, Santiago; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly E; Buss, Kristin A

    2015-08-01

    Fearful temperament, mostly studied as behavioral inhibition (BI), has been extensively associated with social withdrawal in childhood and the later emergence of anxiety disorders, especially social anxiety disorder (SAD). Recent studies have characterized a distinct type of fearful temperament marked by high levels of fear in low threat situations - labeled dysregulated fear. Dysregulated fear has been related to SAD over and above risks associated with BI. However, the mechanism by which dysregulated fear is related to SAD has not been studied. Cognitive mechanisms, such as attentional bias towards threat, may be a possible conduit. We examined differences in attentional bias towards threat in six-year-olds who displayed a pattern of dysregulated fear at age two (N = 23) compared with children who did not display dysregulated fear (N = 33). Moreover, we examined the concurrent relation between attentional bias and social withdrawal. Results indicated that children characterized by dysregulated fear showed a significant bias away from threat, and that this bias was significantly different from the children without dysregulated fear, who showed no significant bias. Moreover, attentional bias towards threat was positively related to social withdrawal only for the dysregulated fear group. These results are discussed in consideration of the existing knowledge of attentional bias to threat in the developmental and pediatric anxiety literatures, as well as recent studies that find important heterogeneity in attentional bias. PMID:25510354

  17. Electronic diary assessment of pain-related fear, attention to pain, and pain intensity in chronic low back pain patients.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roelofs, J.; Peters, M.L.; Patijn, J.; Schouten, E.G.; Vlaeyen, J.W.

    2004-01-01

    The present study investigated the relationships between pain-related fear, attention to pain, and pain intensity in daily life in patients with chronic low back pain. An experience sampling methodology was used in which electronic diary data were collected by means of palmtop computers from 40 chro

  18. Feature-based attention enhances performance by increasing response gain

    OpenAIRE

    Herrmann, Katrin; Heeger, David J.; Carrasco, Marisa

    2012-01-01

    Covert spatial attention can increase contrast sensitivity either by changes in contrast gain or by changes in response gain, depending on the size of the attention field and the size of the stimulus (Herrmann, Montaser-Kouhsari, Carrasco, & Heeger, 2010), as predicted by the normalization model of attention (Reynolds & Heeger, 2009). For feature-based attention, unlike spatial attention, the model predicts only changes in response gain, regardless of whether the featural extent of the attent...

  19. Electrocortical and ocular indices of attention to fearful and neutral faces presented under high and low working memory load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacNamara, Annmarie; Schmidt, Joseph; Zelinsky, Gregory J; Hajcak, Greg

    2012-12-01

    Working memory load reduces the late positive potential (LPP), consistent with the notion that functional activation of the DLPFC attenuates neural indices of sustained attention. Visual attention also modulates the LPP. In the present study, we sought to determine whether working memory load might exert its influence on ERPs by reducing fixations to arousing picture regions. We simultaneously recorded eye-tracking and EEG while participants performed a working memory task interspersed with the presentation of task-irrelevant fearful and neutral faces. As expected, fearful compared to neutral faces elicited larger N170 and LPP amplitudes; in addition, working memory load reduced the N170 and the LPP. Participants made more fixations to arousing regions of neutral faces and faces presented under high working memory load. Therefore, working memory load did not induce avoidance of arousing picture regions and visual attention cannot explain load effects on the N170 and LPP. PMID:22951516

  20. Elevated levels of callous unemotional traits are associated with reduced attentional cueing, with no specificity for fear or eyes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawel, Amy; McKone, Elinor; O'Kearney, Richard; Sellbom, Martin; Irons, Jessica; Palermo, Romina

    2015-07-01

    Three theoretical explanations for the affective facet of psychopathy were tested in individuals with high levels of callous unemotional (CU) traits. Theory 1 (Blair) proposes specific difficulties in processing others' distress (particularly fear). Theory 2 (Dadds) argues for lack of attention to the eyes of faces. Theory 3 (Newman) proposes enhanced selective attention. The theories make contrasting predictions about how CU traits would affect cueing of attention from eye-gaze direction in distressed (i.e., fearful) faces; eye-gaze direction in nondistressed (i.e., happy, neutral) faces; and nonsocial stimuli (arrows). High CU adults (n = 33) showed reduced attentional cueing compared with low CU adults (n = 75) equally across all conditions (eye-gaze in distressed and nondistressed faces, arrows). The high CU group's ability to suppress following of eye-gaze emerged with practice while the low CU group showed no such reduction in gaze-cueing with practice. Overall accuracy and RTs were not different for the low and high CU groups indicating equivalent task engagement. Results support an enhanced selective attention account-consistent with Newman and colleagues' Response Modulation Hypothesis--in which high CU individuals are able to suppress goal-irrelevant social and nonsocial information. The current study also provides novel evidence regarding the nature of gaze-following by tracking practice effects across blocks. While supporting the common assumption that following of gaze is typically mandatory, the results also imply this can be modified by individual differences in personality. PMID:25705978

  1. Feature-based attention enhances performance by increasing response gain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann, Katrin; Heeger, David J; Carrasco, Marisa

    2012-12-01

    Covert spatial attention can increase contrast sensitivity either by changes in contrast gain or by changes in response gain, depending on the size of the attention field and the size of the stimulus (Herrmann et al., 2010), as predicted by the normalization model of attention (Reynolds & Heeger, 2009). For feature-based attention, unlike spatial attention, the model predicts only changes in response gain, regardless of whether the featural extent of the attention field is small or large. To test this prediction, we measured the contrast dependence of feature-based attention. Observers performed an orientation-discrimination task on a spatial array of grating patches. The spatial locations of the gratings were varied randomly so that observers could not attend to specific locations. Feature-based attention was manipulated with a 75% valid and 25% invalid pre-cue, and the featural extent of the attention field was manipulated by introducing uncertainty about the upcoming grating orientation. Performance accuracy was better for valid than for invalid pre-cues, consistent with a change in response gain, when the featural extent of the attention field was small (low uncertainty) or when it was large (high uncertainty) relative to the featural extent of the stimulus. These results for feature-based attention clearly differ from results of analogous experiments with spatial attention, yet both support key predictions of the normalization model of attention. PMID:22580017

  2. Enhancing product label effectiveness by increasing attention and choice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Peschel, Anne; Orquin, Jacob Lund; Mueller Loose, Simone

    increase purchase likelihood of labeled products, attention must be guided to the label. We conducted a combined eye tracking and choice experiment manipulating the surface size and visual saliency of product labels. Results show a strong and significant increase in attention towards product labels which...... are larger and more visually salient. The effect on attention also carries over into increased purchase likelihood. Both marketers and policy makers can benefit from the methodology and findings which provide directions for designing product labels that enhance attention capture and purchase decisions....

  3. Electrophysiological correlates of fearful and sad distraction on target processing in adolescents with attention deficit-hyperactivity symptoms and affective disorders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Singhal

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In this study we used event-related brain potentials (ERP as neural markers of cognitive operations to examine emotion and attentional processing in a population of high-risk adolescents with mental health problems that included ADHD, anxiety, and depression. We included a healthy control group for comparison purposes, and employed a modified version of the emotional oddball paradigm, consisting of frequent distracters (scrambled pictures, infrequent distracters (sad, fearful, and neutral pictures and infrequent targets (circles. Participants were instructed to make a right hand button press to targets and a left hand button press to all other stimuli. EEG/ERP recordings were taken using a high-density 256-channel recording system. Behavioral data showed that for both clinical and non-clinical adolescents, reaction time was slowest in response to the fearful images. Electrophysiological data differentiated emotion and target processing between clinical and non-clinical adolescents. In the clinical group we observed a larger P100 and Late Positive Potential (LPP in response to fearful compared to sad or neutral pictures. There were no differences in these ERPs in the healthy sample. Emotional modulation of target processing was also identified in the clinical sample, where we observed an increase in P300 amplitude, and a larger sustained LPP in response to targets that followed emotional pictures (fear & sad compared to targets that followed neutral pictures or other targets. There were no differences in these target ERPs for the healthy participants. Taken together, we suggest that these data provide important and novel evidence of affective and attention dysfunction in this clinical population of adolescents, and offer an example of the disruptive effects of emotional reactivity on basic cognition.

  4. Flexible Attention Deployment in Threatening Contexts: An Instructed Fear Conditioning Study

    OpenAIRE

    Shechner, Tomer; Pelc, Tatiana; Pine, Daniel S.; Fox, Nathan A.; Bar-Haim, Yair

    2012-01-01

    Factors leading humans to shift attention away from danger cues remain poorly understood. Two laboratory experiments reported here show that context interacts with learning experiences to shape attention avoidance of mild danger cues. The first experiment exposed 18 participants to contextual threat of electric shock. Attention allocation to mild danger cues was then assessed with the dot-probe task. Results showed that contextual threat caused subjects to avert attention from danger cues. In...

  5. Self-consciousness, self-focused attention, blushing propensity and fear of blushing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bogels, SM; Alberts, M; de Jong, Peter

    1996-01-01

    Although it is generally assumed that attentional focus is an important factor in blushing, thus far studies have presented conflicting results concerning the relationship between aspects of blushing and indices of attentional focus. This study investigated the connection between self-focused attent

  6. Extinction in human fear conditioning

    OpenAIRE

    Hermans, Dirk; Craske, Michelle G.; Mineka, Susan; Lovibond, Peter F.

    2006-01-01

    Although most extinction research is conducted in animal laboratories, the study of extinction learning in human fear conditioning has gained increasing attention over the last decade. The most important findings from human fear extinction are reviewed in this article. Specifically, we review experimental investigations of the impact of conditioned inhibitors, conditioned exciters, context renewal, and reinstatement on fear extinction in human samples. We discuss data from laboratory studies ...

  7. Spatial Attention-Related Modulation of the N170 by Backward Masked Fearful Faces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Joshua M.; Reinke, Karen S.

    2010-01-01

    Facial expressions are a basic form of non-verbal communication that convey important social information to others. The relevancy of this information is highlighted by findings that backward masked facial expressions facilitate spatial attention. This attention effect appears to be mediated through a neural network consisting of the amygdala,…

  8. Deficits in attentional processing of fearful facial expressions in schizophrenic patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yunzhe; Zhang, Dandan; Zhao, Yanli; Tan, Shuping; Luo, Yuejia

    2016-01-01

    Impaired attentional processing of negative facial expressions is prominent in schizophrenia and has been shown to be associated with patients' social dysfunctions. However, little is known about when and which specific attention deficits influence social functions. Given the dynamic feature of attention, it is necessary to investigate the attention deficits in negative emotional processing unfolding in time. The current study used event-related potentials (ERPs) to investigate the temporal dynamics of attention deficits in emotion perception and their potential relationship with emotional/social impairments in neuroleptic naive schizophrenic patients. Two specific attention deficits were identified and were found to be associated with emotional/social impairments. More specifically, the deficit in orienting attention (evidenced with the reduced P1 amplitude) was correlated with expressive deficits, while the deficit in executive control of attention (evidenced with the reduced P3 amplitude) was correlated with avolition/asociality. Together, these findings may provide novel insights into the core pathophysiological processes and offer objective biomarkers for specific emotional/social impairments in schizophrenia. It is also hoped that this study helps to bridge the gap between basic cognitive deficits and relative high-level social dysfunctions in schizophrenic patients. PMID:27586404

  9. Links between Infant Temperament and Neurophysiological Measures of Attention to Happy and Fearful Faces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinos, Marina; Matheson, Anna; de Haan, Michelle

    2012-01-01

    Background: Developing control of attention helps infants to regulate their emotions, and individual differences in attention skills may shape how infants perceive and respond to their socio-emotional environments. This study examined whether the temperamental dimensions of self-regulation and negative emotionality relate to infants' attention…

  10. Deep brain stimulation of the ventral striatum increases BDNF in the fear extinction circuit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabricio H Do-Monte

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Deep brain stimulation (DBS of the ventral capsule/ventral striatum (VC/VS reduces the symptoms of treatment-resistant obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD, and improves response to extinction-based therapies. We recently reported that DBS-like stimulation of a rat homologue of VC/VS, the dorsal-VS, reduced conditioned fear and enhanced extinction memory (Rodriguez-Romaguera et al, 2012. In contrast, DBS of the ventral-VS had the opposite effects. To examine possible mechanisms, we assessed the effects of VS DBS on the expression of the neural activity marker Fos and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, a key mediator of extinction plasticity in prefrontal-amygdala circuits. Consistent with decreased fear expression, DBS of dorsal-VS increased Fos expression in prelimbic and infralimbic prefrontal cortices and in the lateral division of the central nucleus of amygdala, an area that inhibits amygdala output. Consistent with improved extinction memory, we found that DBS of dorsal-VS, but not ventral-VS, increased neuronal BDNF expression in prelimbic and infralimbic prefrontal cortices. These rodent findings are consistent with the idea that clinical DBS of VC/VS may augment fear extinction through an increase in BDNF expression.

  11. Deep brain stimulation of the ventral striatum increases BDNF in the fear extinction circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Do-Monte, Fabricio H; Rodriguez-Romaguera, Jose; Rosas-Vidal, Luis E; Quirk, Gregory J

    2013-01-01

    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the ventral capsule/ventral striatum (VC/VS) reduces the symptoms of treatment-resistant obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and improves response to extinction-based therapies. We recently reported that DBS-like stimulation of a rat homologue of VC/VS, the dorsal-VS, reduced conditioned fear and enhanced extinction memory (Rodriguez-Romaguera et al., 2012). In contrast, DBS of the ventral-VS had the opposite effects. To examine possible mechanisms of these effects, we assessed the effects of VS DBS on the expression of the neural activity marker Fos and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a key mediator of extinction plasticity in prefrontal-amygdala circuits. Consistent with decreased fear expression, DBS of dorsal-VS increased Fos expression in prelimbic and infralimbic prefrontal cortices and in the lateral division of the central nucleus of amygdala, an area that inhibits amygdala output. Consistent with improved extinction memory, we found that DBS of dorsal-VS, but not ventral-VS, increased neuronal BDNF expression in prelimbic and infralimbic prefrontal cortices. These rodent findings are consistent with the idea that clinical DBS of VC/VS may augment fear extinction through an increase in BDNF expression. PMID:23964215

  12. Dynamic Fearful Gaze Does Not Enhance Attention Orienting in Individuals with Asperger's Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uono, Shota; Sato, Wataru; Toichi, Motomi

    2009-01-01

    Although impaired joint attention is one of the core clinical features of pervasive developmental disorder including autistic disorder and Asperger's disorder, experimental studies failed to report its impairment. This discrepancy might be the result of differences between real-life and experimental situations. The present study examined joint…

  13. Self-Esteem, Self-Focused Attention, and the Mediating Role of Fear of Negative Evaluation in College Students with and without Asthma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junghans-Rutelonis, Ashley N.; Suorsa, Kristina I.; Tackett, Alayna P.; Burkley, Edward; Chaney, John M.; Mullins, Larry L.

    2015-01-01

    Objective: The current study investigated the mediating role of fear of negative evaluation on the relationship between self-focused attention and self-esteem among college students with and without asthma. Participants: Young adults with (n = 148) and without (n = 530) childhood-onset asthma were recruited from a college student population.…

  14. Fear of nuclear war increases the risk of common mental disorders among young adults: a five-year follow-up study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tuulio-Henriksson Annamari

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Evidence on the relation between fear of war and mental health is insufficient. We carried out a prospective cohort study to find out whether fear of nuclear war is related to increased risk of common mental disorders. Methods Within two months preceding the outbreak of Persian Gulf War in January 1991, 1518 adolescents [mean age 16.8 years, SD 0.9] filled in a self-administered questionnaire. Of the 1493 respondents, 47% gave their written informed consent to participate in the follow-up study. There were no material differences between those who chose to respond anonymously and those who volunteered to give their name and address for the follow-up study. In 1995, the response to the follow-up questionnaire was 92%. Common mental disorders were assessed by 36-item version of the General Health Questionnaire [GHQ]. A score 5 or higher was considered to indicate caseness. We excluded 23 cases which had used mental health services in the year 1991 or earlier and two cases with deficient responses to GHQ. This left 626 subjects for analysis [400 women]. Results After adjusting for significant mental health risk factors in logistic regression analysis, the risk for common mental disorders was found to be significantly related to the increasing frequency of fear for nuclear war, high scores of trait anxiety and high scores of immature defense style. Elevated risk was confined to the group reporting fear of nuclear war once a week or more often [odds ratio 2.05; 95% confidence interval 1.29–3.27]. Conclusion Frequent fear of nuclear war in adolescents seems to be an indicator for an increased risk for common mental disorders and deserves serious attention.

  15. 疼痛恐惧相关的注意偏向及其矫正%The attention bias related to fear of pain and its modification

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨周; Todd Jackson; 陈红; 黄承志; 苏琳; 高婷

    2016-01-01

    Fear of pain plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of chronic pain. Fear of pain appears to have a key role in early stage of attention processing towards pain-related information across different types of stimuli and groups. Considerable evidence indicates associated attention biases reflect hypervigilance that may contribute to perpetuating the focus on pain and interfere with the capacity to attend to non-painful experiences. Modifying attention biases related to fear of pain has the potential to improve pain experience. Future research should use tasks with more ecological validity to investigate information- processing related to fear of pain and its neural substrates. In addition, more research is needed to explore how effective different attention modification strategies are in reducing distress and disability among chronic pain patients.%疼痛恐惧是影响和维持慢性痛的重要因素。不同材料和被试类型情况下,疼痛恐惧均主要作用于个体对疼痛相关信息的早期注意加工阶段,表现为注意警觉模式。该注意模式使个体将注意维持在疼痛上,从而干扰了对非疼信息的注意能力。矫正疼痛恐惧相关注意偏向可以改善疼痛体验。未来研究应采用更具生态效度的任务测量疼痛恐惧相关的注意偏向及其神经基础,进一步考察矫正疼痛恐惧相关注意偏向能否改善慢痛患者的忧郁和功能丧失等问题。

  16. Dividing Attention Lowers Children's but Increases Adults' False Memories

    OpenAIRE

    Otgaar, H.; Peters, M.; Howe, M. L.

    2012-01-01

    The present study examined the impact of divided attention on children’s and adults’ neutral and negative true and false memories in a standard DRM paradigm. Children (7- and 11-year-olds; n = 126) and adults (n = 52) received 5 neutral and 5 negative DRM word lists where half of each group received a divided attention task. The results showed that divided attention affected children’s and adults’ false memory levels differently, but did not alter true memory differently. Specifically, our re...

  17. Increased skin conductance responses and neural activity during fear conditioning are associated with a repressive coping style

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim eKlucken

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The investigation of individual differences in coping styles in response to fear conditioning is an important issue for a better understanding of the etiology and treatment of psychiatric disorders. It has been assumed that an avoidant (repressive coping style is characterized by increased emotion regulation efforts in context of fearful stimuli as compared to a more vigilant coping style. However, no study so far has investigated the neural correlates of fear conditioning of repressors and sensitizers.In the present fMRI study, 76 participants were classified as repressors or as sensitizers and were exposed to a fear conditioning paradigm, in which the CS+ predicted electrical stimulation, while another neutral stimulus (CS- did not. In addition, skin conductance responses (SCRs were measured continuously.As the main findings, we found increased neural activations in repressors as compared to sensitizers in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and the anterior cingulate cortex during fear conditioning. In addition, elevated activity to the CS+ in amygdala, insula, occipital, and orbitofrontal cortex as well as conditioned SCRs were found in repressors.The present results demonstrate increased neural activations in structures linked to emotion down-regulation mechanisms like the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, which may reflect the increased coping effort in repressors. At the same time, repressors showed increased activations in arousal and evaluation-associated structures like the amygdala, the occipital cortex, and the orbitofrontal cortex, which is also mirrored in increased SCRs. The present results support recent assumptions about a two-process model of repression postulating a fast vigilant response to fearful stimuli, but also a second emotion down-regulating process.

  18. Repeated exposure to conditioned fear stress increases anxiety and delays sleep recovery following exposure to an acute traumatic stressor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin N Greenwood

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Repeated stressor exposure can sensitize physiological responses to novel stressors and facilitate the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders including anxiety. Disruptions in diurnal rhythms of sleep-wake behavior accompany stress-related psychiatric disorders and could contribute to their development. Complex stressors that include fear-eliciting stimuli can be a component of repeated stress experienced by humans, but whether exposure to repeated fear can prime the development of anxiety and sleep disturbances is unknown. In the current study, adult male F344 rats were exposed to either control conditions or repeated contextual fear conditioning for 22 days followed by exposure to either no, mild (10, or severe (100 acute uncontrollable tail shock stress. Exposure to acute stress produced anxiety-like behavior as measured by a reduction in juvenile social exploration and exaggerated shock-elicited freezing in a novel context. Prior exposure to repeated fear enhanced anxiety-like behavior as measured by shock-elicited freezing, but did not alter social exploratory behavior. The potentiation of anxiety produced by prior repeated fear was temporary; exaggerated fear was present 1 day but not 4 days following acute stress. Interestingly, exposure to acute stress reduced REM and NREM sleep during the hours immediately following acute stress. This initial reduction in sleep was followed by robust REM rebound and diurnal rhythm flattening of sleep / wake behavior. Prior repeated fear extended the acute stress-induced REM and NREM sleep loss, impaired REM rebound, and prolonged the flattening of the diurnal rhythm of NREM sleep following acute stressor exposure. These data suggest that impaired recovery of sleep / wake behavior following acute stress could contribute to the mechanisms by which a history of prior repeated stress increases vulnerability to subsequent novel stressors and stress-related disorders.

  19. Age increases anxiety and reactivity of the fear/anxiety circuit in Lewis rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyza, Ksenia Z; Boguszewski, Pawel M; Nikolaev, Evgeni; Zagrodzka, Jolanta

    2011-11-20

    A growing body of data indicates that changes in emotional behavior occur with age. Young Lewis rats are known to display hypofunction of the HPA axis. With age the reactivity of this axis is thought to increase with a concomitant rise in anxiety. In the current study, we investigate how and if the pattern of neuronal activation (measured as c-Fos protein expression) in Lewis rat brains changes with age and in response to novel environments differing in aversiveness. We found that distinct parts of the fear/anxiety circuit (i.e., the amygdalar complex, hippocampus and hypothalamus) undergo diverse age-related changes in response to behavioral challenges. While in the hypothalamus an increase in responsivity to mild stressors was observed with age, no such effect was present in the hippocampus. The amygdalar complex (especially the medial and cortical nuclei) on the other hand exhibited an age-dependent decrease in neuronal activation to mild stressors. This was accompanied by a marked increase in anxiety not correlated with a decline in locomotor activity. PMID:21782853

  20. Dividing Attention Lowers Children's but Increases Adults' False Memories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otgaar, Henry; Peters, Maarten; Howe, Mark L.

    2012-01-01

    The present study examined the impact of divided attention on children's and adults' neutral and negative true and false memories in a standard Deese/Roediger-McDermott paradigm. Children (7- and 11-year-olds; n = 126) and adults (n = 52) received 5 neutral and 5 negative Deese/Roediger-McDermott word lists; half of each group also received a…

  1. Non-expert listeners show decreased heart rate and increased blood pressure (fear bradycardia) in response to atonal music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proverbio, Alice M; Manfrin, Luigi; Arcari, Laura A; De Benedetto, Francesco; Gazzola, Martina; Guardamagna, Matteo; Lozano Nasi, Valentina; Zani, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies suggested that listening to different types of music may modulate differently psychological mood and physiological responses associated with the induced emotions. In this study the effect of listening to instrumental classical vs. atonal contemporary music was examined in a group of 50 non-expert listeners. The subjects' heart rate and diastolic and systolic blood pressure values were measured while they listened to music of different style and emotional typologies. Pieces were selected by asking a group of composers and conservatory professors to suggest a list of the most emotional music pieces (from Renaissance to present time). A total of 214 suggestions from 20 respondents were received. Then it was asked them to identify which pieces best induced in the listener feelings of agitation, joy or pathos and the number of suggested pieces per style was computed. Atonal pieces were more frequently indicated as agitating, and tonal pieces as joyful. The presence/absence of tonality in a musical piece did not affect the affective dimension of pathos (being touching). Among the most frequently cited six pieces were selected that were comparable for structure and style, to represent each emotion and style. They were equally evaluated as unfamiliar by an independent group of 10 students of the same cohort) and were then used as stimuli for the experimental session in which autonomic parameters were recorded. Overall, listening to atonal music (independent of the pieces' emotional characteristics) was associated with a reduced heart rate (fear bradycardia) and increased blood pressure (both diastolic and systolic), possibly reflecting an increase in alertness and attention, psychological tension, and anxiety. This evidence fits with the results of the esthetical assessment showing how, overall, atonal music is perceived as more agitating and less joyful than tonal one. PMID:26579029

  2. Non-expert listeners show decreased heart rate and increased blood pressure (fear bradycardia in response to atonal music

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice Mado eProverbio

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies suggested that listening to different types of music may modulate differently psychological mood and physiological responses associated with the induced emotions. In this study the effect of listening to instrumental classical vs. atonal contemporary music was examined in a group of 50 non-expert listeners. The subjects’ heart rate and diastolic and systolic blood pressure values were measured while they listened to music of different style and emotional typologies. Pieces were selected by asking a group of composers and conservatory professors to suggest a list of the most emotional music pieces (from Renaissance to present time. A total of 214 suggestions from 20 respondents was received. Then it was asked them to identify which pieces best induced in the listener feelings of agitation, joy or pathos and the number of suggested pieces per style was computed. Atonal pieces were more frequently indicated as agitating, and tonal pieces as joyful. The presence/absence of tonality in a musical piece did not affect the affective dimension of pathos (being touching. Among the most frequently cited six pieces were selected that were comparable for structure and style, to represent each emotion and style. They were equally evaluated as unfamiliar by an independent group of 10 students of the same cohort and were then used as stimuli for the experimental session in which autonomic parameters were recorded. Overall, listening to atonal music (independent of the pieces’ emotional characteristics was associated with a reduced heart rate (fear bradycardia and increased blood pressure (both diastolic and systolic, possibly reflecting an increase in alertness and attention, psychological tension, and anxiety. This evidence fits with the results of the aesthetical assessment showing how, overall, atonal music is perceived as more agitating and less joyful than tonal one.

  3. Impaired fear recognition and attentional set-shifting is associated with brain structural changes in alcoholic patients

    OpenAIRE

    Trick, Leanne; Kempton, Matthew J.; Williams, Steven C.R.; Duka, Theodora

    2015-01-01

    Alcoholic patients with multiple detoxifications/relapses show cognitive and emotional deficits. We performed structural magnetic resonance imaging and examined performance on a cognitive flexibility task (intra-extradimensional set shift and reversal; IED). We also presented subjects with fearful, disgust and anger facial emotional expressions. Participants were abstaining, multiply detoxified (MDTx; n = 12) or singly detoxified patients (SDTx; n = 17) and social drinker controls (n = 31). A...

  4. Spatial attention increases performance but not subjective confidence in a discrimination task

    OpenAIRE

    Wilimzig, Claudia; Tsuchiya, Naotsugu; Fahle, Manfred; Einhäuser, Wolfgang; Koch, Christof

    2008-01-01

    Selective attention to a target yields faster and more accurate responses. Faster response times, in turn, are usually associated with increased subjective confidence. Could the decrease in reaction time in the presence of attention therefore simply reflect a shift toward more confident responses? We here addressed the extent to which attention modulates accuracy, processing speed, and confidence independently. To probe the effect of spatial attention on performance, we used two attentional m...

  5. Drinking to Distraction: Does Alcohol Increase Attentional Bias in Adults with ADHD?

    OpenAIRE

    Roberts, Walter; Fillmore, Mark T.; Milich, Richard

    2011-01-01

    Previous research has shown that social drinkers continue to show attentional bias towards alcohol-related stimuli even after consuming a moderate dose of alcohol. In contrast, little is known about how alcohol acutely affects attentional bias in groups at risk to develop alcohol-related problems, such as adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Such individuals may show increased attentional bias following alcohol relative to nonclinical controls. The present study tested...

  6. Exposure to Increased Environmental Complexity during Rearing Reduces Fearfulness and Increases Use of Three-Dimensional Space in Laying Hens (Gallus gallus domesticus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brantsæter, Margrethe; Nordgreen, Janicke; Rodenburg, T. Bas; Tahamtani, Fernanda M.; Popova, Anastasija; Janczak, Andrew M.

    2016-01-01

    The complexity of the rearing environment is important for behavioral development and fearfulness. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that laying hens reared in a complex aviary system with exposure to mild intermittent stressors would be less fearful, less sensitive to stress, and would use elevated areas of the pen more often as adults than hens reared in a barren cage environment. Laying hens (N = 160) were housed in the same rearing house; half of the birds (n = 80) in an aviary and the other half (n = 80) in cages. At 16 weeks of age, the birds were transported to the experimental facilities. Their behavior was recorded at 19 and 23 weeks of age and analyzed by analysis of variance on individual scores for a fearfulness-related principal component generated using principal component analysis. The results indicate that aviary-reared birds have lower levels of fearfulness compared with cage-reared birds both at 19 weeks and at 23 weeks of age. When comparing the response induced by initial exposure to a novel object at 19 and 23 weeks of age, more aviary-reared birds tended to fly up at 19 weeks compared to the cage-reared birds, indicating a tendency toward a more active behavioral response in the aviary-reared birds than in cage-reared birds. There was no difference between treatments in the flight response at 23 weeks. The groups did not differ in defecation frequency or the concentration of fecal corticosterone metabolites at either age. At 19 weeks, observation of the spatial distribution in the home pens indicated that more aviary-reared birds spent time on the low perch, the elevated platform, and the upper perch, compared to the cage-reared birds. However, at 23 weeks of age, these differences were no longer detected. The results of this study support the hypothesis that increased environmental complexity during rearing reduces fearfulness of adult laying hens. PMID:26973843

  7. Increases in the numerical density of GAT-1 positive puncta in the barrel cortex of adult mice after fear conditioning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Siucinska

    Full Text Available Three days of fear conditioning that combines tactile stimulation of a row of facial vibrissae (conditioned stimulus, CS with a tail shock (unconditioned stimulus, UCS expands the representation of "trained" vibrissae, which can be demonstrated by labeling with 2-deoxyglucose in layer IV of the barrel cortex. We have also shown that functional reorganization of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1 increases GABAergic markers in the hollows of "trained" barrels of the adult mouse. This study investigated how whisker-shock conditioning (CS+UCS affected the expression of puncta of a high-affinity GABA plasma membrane transporter GAT-1 in the barrel cortex of mice 24 h after associative learning paradigm. We found that whisker-shock conditioning (CS+UCS led to increase expression of neuronal and astroglial GAT-1 puncta in the "trained" row compared to controls: Pseudoconditioned, CS-only, UCS-only and Naïve animals. These findings suggest that fear conditioning specifically induces activation of systems regulating cellular levels of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA.

  8. EXISTENTIAL FEAR AS ONTOLOGICALLY BACKGROUND OF MEDIOCRITY

    OpenAIRE

    Гіоргадзе, Галина Василівна

    2016-01-01

    The article deals with the phenomenon of fear in terms of the influence of its varieties (fear as a biological defense mechanism, fear as a psychological phenomenon, the varieties of existential fears) on human life and the possibility of creative self. It is determined the protective function of fear, its inhibitory effect on personal development and the limit effect of domestic and social freedom. Particular attention is paid to the analysis of existential fear as a (mostly unconscious) "br...

  9. Reduction of pain-related fear and increased function and participation in work-related upper extremity pain (WRUEP): effects of exposure in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jong, Jeroen R; Vlaeyen, Johan W S; van Eijsden, Marjon; Loo, Christoph; Onghena, Patrick

    2012-10-01

    There is increasing evidence that pain-related fear influences the development and maintenance of pain disability, presumably mediated through the fear-related avoidance of valued activities. Individually tailored graded exposure in vivo (GEXP) has been demonstrated to reduce pain-related fear and increase functional abilities in patients with chronic low back pain, neck pain, and complex regional pain syndrome. The current study aimed to test whether these effects generalize towards patients with work-related upper extremity pain. A sequential replicated and randomized single-case experimental phase design with multiple measurements was used. Within each participant, GEXP was compared to a no-treatment baseline period and a no-treatment 6-month follow-up period. Eight patients who reported a high level of pain-related fear were included in the study. Daily changes in pain catastrophizing, pain-related fear, and pain intensity were assessed using a diary, and subjected to randomization tests. Before the start of the baseline period, just after GEXP, and at 6-month follow-up, clinically relevant changes of pain catastrophizing, pain-related fear, perceived harmfulness of physical activity, pain disability, and participation/autonomy were verified. When GEXP was introduced, levels of pain catastrophizing and pain-related fear decreased significantly. Clinically relevant improvements were observed for pain disability, perceived participation, and autonomy. These favourable changes were maintained until 6-month follow-up. The findings of the current study underscore the external validity of a cognitive-behavioural GEXP treatment for patients with chronic pain reporting increased pain-related fear. PMID:22902198

  10. Mouse chronic social stress increases blood and brain kynurenine pathway activity and fear behaviour: Both effects are reversed by inhibition of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuertig, René; Azzinnari, Damiano; Bergamini, Giorgio; Cathomas, Flurin; Sigrist, Hannes; Seifritz, Erich; Vavassori, Stefano; Luippold, Andreas; Hengerer, Bastian; Ceci, Angelo; Pryce, Christopher R

    2016-05-01

    Psychosocial stress is a major risk factor for mood and anxiety disorders, in which excessive reactivity to aversive events/stimuli is a major psychopathology. In terms of pathophysiology, immune-inflammation is an important candidate, including high blood and brain levels of metabolites belonging to the kynurenine pathway. Animal models are needed to study causality between psychosocial stress, immune-inflammation and hyper-reactivity to aversive stimuli. The present mouse study investigated effects of psychosocial stress as chronic social defeat (CSD) versus control-handling (CON) on: Pavlovian tone-shock fear conditioning, activation of the kynurenine pathway, and efficacy of a specific inhibitor (IDOInh) of the tryptophan-kynurenine catabolising enzyme indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO1), in reversing CSD effects on the kynurenine pathway and fear. CSD led to excessive fear learning and memory, whilst repeated oral escitalopram (antidepressant and anxiolytic) reversed excessive fear memory, indicating predictive validity of the model. CSD led to higher blood levels of TNF-α, IFN-γ, kynurenine (KYN), 3-hydroxykynurenine (3-HK) and kynurenic acid, and higher KYN and 3-HK in amygdala and hippocampus. CSD was without effect on IDO1 gene or protein expression in spleen, ileum and liver, whilst increasing liver TDO2 gene expression. Nonetheless, oral IDOInh reduced blood and brain levels of KYN and 3-HK in CSD mice to CON levels, and we therefore infer that CSD increases IDO1 activity by increasing its post-translational activation. Furthermore, repeated oral IDOInh reversed excessive fear memory in CSD mice to CON levels. IDOInh reversal of CSD-induced hyper-activity in the kynurenine pathway and fear system contributes significantly to the evidence for a causal pathway between psychosocial stress, immune-inflammation and the excessive fearfulness that is a major psychopathology in stress-related neuropsychiatric disorders. PMID:26724575

  11. A sad mood increases attention to unhealthy food images in women with food addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frayn, Mallory; Sears, Christopher R; von Ranson, Kristin M

    2016-05-01

    Food addiction and emotional eating both influence eating and weight, but little is known of how negative mood affects the attentional processes that may contribute to food addiction. The purpose of this study was to compare attention to food images in adult women (N = 66) with versus without food addiction, before and after a sad mood induction (MI). Participants' eye fixations were tracked and recorded throughout 8-s presentations of displays with healthy food, unhealthy food, and non-food images. Food addiction was self-reported using the Yale Food Addiction Scale. The sad MI involved watching an 8-min video about a young child who passed away from cancer. It was predicted that: (1) participants in the food addiction group would attend to unhealthy food significantly more than participants in the control group, and (2) participants in the food addiction group would increase their attention to unhealthy food images following the sad MI, due to increased emotional reactivity and poorer emotional regulation. As predicted, the sad MI had a different effect for those with versus without food addiction: for participants with food addiction, attention to unhealthy images increased following the sad MI and attention to healthy images decreased, whereas for participants without food addiction the sad MI did not alter attention to food. These findings contribute to researchers' understanding of the cognitive factors underlying food addiction. PMID:26873452

  12. Increased attention and memory for beloved-related information during infatuation: behavioral and electrophysiological data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeslag, Sandra J E; Olivier, Jamie R; Köhlen, Martine E; Nijs, Ilse M; Van Strien, Jan W

    2015-01-01

    Emotionally salient information is well attended and remembered. It has been shown that infatuated individuals have increased attention for their beloved. It is unknown whether this attention bias generalizes to information related to the beloved. Moreover, infatuated individuals report to remember trivial things about their beloved, but this has not yet been tested empirically. In two studies, we tested whether infatuated individuals have increased attention and memory for beloved-related information. In a passive viewing task (Study 1), the late positive potential, an event-related potential (ERP) component reflecting motivated attention, was enhanced for beloved-related vs friend-related words/phrases. In a recognition task (Study 2), memory performance and the frontal and parietal ERP old/new effects, reflecting familiarity and recollection, respectively, were not enhanced for beloved-related compared with friend-related words/phrases. In free recall tasks in both studies, memory was better for beloved-related than friend-related words/phrases. This research reveals that attention and memory are enhanced for beloved-related information. These attention and memory biases for beloved-related information were not due to valence, semantic relatedness, or experience, but to arousal. To conclude, romantic love has profound effects on cognition that play a clear role in daily life. PMID:24526182

  13. The relationship between poor performance on attention tasks and increased suicidal ideation in adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Seog Ju; Kang, Seung-Gul; Cho, In Hee; Lee, Yu-Jin G; Hong, Jin Pyo; Park, Juhyun; Lee, Yu Jin

    2015-11-01

    Our goal was to examine the relationship between attention and suicidal ideation in a school-based adolescent population. This cross-sectional study involved 2,462 students from eight high schools in South Korea (1,021 males and 1,441 females, mean age 17.3 ± 0.6 years). The participants completed the Beck Scale for Suicide Ideation (SSI) and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and took part in computerized attention tasks. Participants with high SSI scores (16 or higher) exhibited a higher mean number of omission errors (OEs) and commission errors (CEs) on the visual sustained attention tasks than did participants with low SSI scores (p suicidal ideation in adolescents after controlling for depressed mood. The current results suggest a direct link between attention deficits and increased suicidality independent of depressive symptoms in adolescents. PMID:25663429

  14. Europe's thirst for Russian gas increases fears over security of supply

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A new report from Russian Gazprom indicates that Europe is becoming increasingly reliant on gas from Russia. In 2013 the volume of Gazprom Group's gas sales to countries beyond the Commonwealth of Independent States amounted to 174.3 billion cubic metres, which accounts for one-third of the total gas consumption in Europe. Europe might normally welcome the increasing free-flow of gas to the continent, but the fact that this rising dependency on Russia comes at a time of even greater political tensions should be a wake-up call to policymakers. Policymakers should focus more on what is practical than what is politically correct. If one nation wants to tilt at windmills and abandon the security of energy supply offered by modern, safe and technological solutions of the future, such as baseload nuclear, it does not mean everyone has to follow suit. Europe's collective political leadership would do well to remember that you do not cast out or effectively demonise tried and tested solutions to keeping nations safe, warm, productive and economically vibrant at a time when very real threats to energy supply loom on the horizon.

  15. Spatial covert attention increases contrast sensitivity across the CSF: support for signal enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrasco, M.; Penpeci-Talgar, C.; Eckstein, M.

    2000-01-01

    This study is the first to report the benefits of spatial covert attention on contrast sensitivity in a wide range of spatial frequencies when a target alone was presented in the absence of a local post-mask. We used a peripheral precue (a small circle indicating the target location) to explore the effects of covert spatial attention on contrast sensitivity as assessed by orientation discrimination (Experiments 1-4), detection (Experiments 2 and 3) and localization (Experiment 3) tasks. In all four experiments the target (a Gabor patch ranging in spatial frequency from 0.5 to 10 cpd) was presented alone in one of eight possible locations equidistant from fixation. Contrast sensitivity was consistently higher for peripherally- than for neutrally-cued trials, even though we eliminated variables (distracters, global masks, local masks, and location uncertainty) that are known to contribute to an external noise reduction explanation of attention. When observers were presented with vertical and horizontal Gabor patches an external noise reduction signal detection model accounted for the cueing benefit in a discrimination task (Experiment 1). However, such a model could not account for this benefit when location uncertainty was reduced, either by: (a) Increasing overall performance level (Experiment 2); (b) increasing stimulus contrast to enable fine discriminations of slightly tilted suprathreshold stimuli (Experiment 3); and (c) presenting a local post-mask (Experiment 4). Given that attentional benefits occurred under conditions that exclude all variables predicted by the external noise reduction model, these results support the signal enhancement model of attention.

  16. Fear potentiated startle increases phospholipase D (PLD) expression/activity and PLD-linked metabotropic glutamate receptor mediated post-tetanic potentiation in rat amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, Balaji; Scott, Michael T; Pollandt, Sebastian; Schroeder, Bradley; Kurosky, Alexander; Shinnick-Gallagher, Patricia

    2016-02-01

    Long-term memory (LTM) of fear stores activity dependent modifications that include changes in amygdala signaling. Previously, we identified an enhanced probability of release of glutamate mediated signaling to be important in rat fear potentiated startle (FPS), a well-established translational behavioral measure of fear. Here, we investigated short- and long-term synaptic plasticity in FPS involving metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) and associated downstream proteomic changes in the thalamic-lateral amygdala pathway (Th-LA). Aldolase A, an inhibitor of phospholipase D (PLD), expression was reduced, concurrent with significantly elevated PLD protein expression. Blocking the PLD-mGluR signaling significantly reduced PLD activity. While transmitter release probability increased in FPS, PLD-mGluR agonist and antagonist actions were occluded. In the unpaired group (UNP), blocking the PLD-mGluR increased while activating the receptor decreased transmitter release probability, consistent with decreased synaptic potentials during tetanic stimulation. FPS Post-tetanic potentiation (PTP) immediately following long-term potentiation (LTP) induction was significantly increased. Blocking PLD-mGluR signaling prevented PTP and reduced cumulative PTP probability but not LTP maintenance in both groups. These effects are similar to those mediated through mGluR7, which is co-immunoprecipitated with PLD in FPS. Lastly, blocking mGluR-PLD in the rat amygdala was sufficient to prevent behavioral expression of fear memory. Thus, our study in the Th-LA pathway provides the first evidence for PLD as an important target of mGluR signaling in amygdala fear-associated memory. Importantly, the PLD-mGluR provides a novel therapeutic target for treating maladaptive fear memories in posttraumatic stress and anxiety disorders. PMID:26748024

  17. Repeated Exposure to Conditioned Fear Stress Increases Anxiety and Delays Sleep Recovery Following Exposure to an Acute Traumatic Stressor

    OpenAIRE

    Greenwood, Benjamin N.; Thompson, Robert S.; Opp, Mark R.; Fleshner, Monika

    2014-01-01

    Repeated stressor exposure can sensitize physiological responses to novel stressors and facilitate the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders including anxiety. Disruptions in diurnal rhythms of sleep–wake behavior accompany stress-related psychiatric disorders and could contribute to their development. Complex stressors that include fear-eliciting stimuli can be a component of repeated stress experienced by human beings, but whether exposure to repeated fear can prime the develo...

  18. Increased connectivity between sensorimotor and attentional areas in Parkinson's disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Onu, Mihaela [Medical Imaging Department, Clinical Hospital ' ' Prof. Dr. Th. Burghele' ' , Bucharest (Romania); Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Biophysics, Bucharest (Romania); Badea, Liviu [National Institute for Research and Development in Informatics, Artificial Intelligence and Bioinformatics Group, Bucharest (Romania); Roceanu, Adina; Bajenaru, Ovidiu [University of Bucharest Emergency Hospital, Neurology Department, Bucharest (Romania); Tivarus, Madalina [University of Rochester Medical Center, Department of Imaging Sciences and Rochester Center for Brain Imaging, Rochester, NY (United States)

    2015-09-15

    Our study is using Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to evaluate functional connectivity changes in Parkinson's disease (PD) in an unbiased manner. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data was collected for 27 PD patients and 16 healthy subjects. Differences for intra- and inter-network connectivity between healthy subjects and patients were investigated using FMRIB Software Library (FSL) tools (Melodic ICA, dual regression, FSLNets). Twenty-three ICA maps were identified as components of neuronal origin. For intra-network connectivity changes, eight components showed a significant connectivity increase in patients (p < 0.05); these were correlated with clinical scores and were largest for (sensori)motor networks. For inter-network connectivity changes, we found higher connectivity between the sensorimotor network and the spatial attention network (p = 0.0098) and lower connectivity between anterior and posterior default mode networks (DMN) (p = 0.024), anterior DMN and visual recognition networks (p = 0.026), as well as between visual attention and main dorsal attention networks (p = 0.03), for patients as compared to healthy subjects. The area under the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve for the best predictor (partial correlation between sensorimotor and spatial attention networks) was 0.772. These functional alterations were not associated with any gray or white matter structural changes. Our results show higher connectivity between sensorimotor and spatial attention areas in patients that may be related to the reduced movement automaticity in PD. (orig.)

  19. Uncertainty is associated with increased selective attention and sustained stimulus processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dieterich, Raoul; Endrass, Tanja; Kathmann, Norbert

    2016-06-01

    Uncertainty about future threat has been found to be associated with an overestimation of threat probability and is hypothesized to elicit additional allocation of attention. We used event-related potentials to examine uncertainty-related dynamics in attentional allocation, exploiting brain potentials' high temporal resolution and sensitivity to attention. Thirty participants performed a picture-viewing task in which cues indicated the subsequent picture valence. A certain-neutral and a certain-aversive cue accurately predicted subsequent picture valence, whereas an uncertain cue did not. Participants overestimated the effective frequency of aversive pictures following the uncertain cue, both during and after the task, signifying expectancy and covariation biases, and they tended to express lower subjective valences for aversive pictures presented after the uncertain cue. Pictures elicited increased P2 and LPP amplitudes when their valence could not be predicted from the cue. For the LPP, this effect was more pronounced in response to neutral pictures. Uncertainty appears to enhance the engagement of early phasic and sustained attention for uncertainly cued targets. Thus, defensive motivation related to uncertainty about future threat elicits specific attentional dynamics implicating prioritization at various processing stages, especially for nonthreatening stimuli that tend to violate expectations. PMID:26810702

  20. Increased connectivity between sensorimotor and attentional areas in Parkinson's disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Our study is using Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to evaluate functional connectivity changes in Parkinson's disease (PD) in an unbiased manner. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data was collected for 27 PD patients and 16 healthy subjects. Differences for intra- and inter-network connectivity between healthy subjects and patients were investigated using FMRIB Software Library (FSL) tools (Melodic ICA, dual regression, FSLNets). Twenty-three ICA maps were identified as components of neuronal origin. For intra-network connectivity changes, eight components showed a significant connectivity increase in patients (p < 0.05); these were correlated with clinical scores and were largest for (sensori)motor networks. For inter-network connectivity changes, we found higher connectivity between the sensorimotor network and the spatial attention network (p = 0.0098) and lower connectivity between anterior and posterior default mode networks (DMN) (p = 0.024), anterior DMN and visual recognition networks (p = 0.026), as well as between visual attention and main dorsal attention networks (p = 0.03), for patients as compared to healthy subjects. The area under the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve for the best predictor (partial correlation between sensorimotor and spatial attention networks) was 0.772. These functional alterations were not associated with any gray or white matter structural changes. Our results show higher connectivity between sensorimotor and spatial attention areas in patients that may be related to the reduced movement automaticity in PD. (orig.)

  1. Increased Sensitivity of the Neuronal Nicotinic Receptor α2 Subunit Causes Familial Epilepsy with Nocturnal Wandering and Ictal Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aridon, Paolo; Marini, Carla; Di Resta, Chiara; Brilli, Elisa; De Fusco, Maurizio; Politi, Fausta; Parrini, Elena; Manfredi, Irene; Pisano, Tiziana; Pruna, Dario; Curia, Giulia; Cianchetti, Carlo; Pasqualetti, Massimo; Becchetti, Andrea; Guerrini, Renzo; Casari, Giorgio

    2006-01-01

    Sleep has traditionally been recognized as a precipitating factor for some forms of epilepsy, although differential diagnosis between some seizure types and parasomnias may be difficult. Autosomal dominant frontal lobe epilepsy is characterized by nocturnal seizures with hyperkinetic automatisms and poorly organized stereotyped movements and has been associated with mutations of the α4 and β2 subunits of the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. We performed a clinical and molecular genetic study of a large pedigree segregating sleep-related epilepsy in which seizures are associated with fear sensation, tongue movements, and nocturnal wandering, closely resembling nightmares and sleep walking. We identified a new genetic locus for familial sleep-related focal epilepsy on chromosome 8p12.3-8q12.3. By sequencing the positional candidate neuronal cholinergic receptor α2 subunit gene (CHRNA2), we detected a heterozygous missense mutation, I279N, in the first transmembrane domain that is crucial for receptor function. Whole-cell recordings of transiently transfected HEK293 cells expressing either the mutant or the wild-type receptor showed that the new CHRNA2 mutation markedly increases the receptor sensitivity to acetylcholine, therefore indicating that the nicotinic α2 subunit alteration is the underlying cause. CHRNA2 is the third neuronal cholinergic receptor gene to be associated with familial sleep-related epilepsies. Compared with the CHRNA4 and CHRNB2 mutations reported elsewhere, CHRNA2 mutations cause a more complex and finalized ictal behavior. PMID:16826524

  2. Fear of pain potentiates nocebo hyperalgesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aslaksen PM

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Per M Aslaksen,1 Peter S Lyby2 1Department of Psychology, Research Group for Cognitive Neuroscience, The Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Tromsø, The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø, Norway; 2Catosenteret Rehabilitation Center, Son, Norway Abstract: Nocebo hyperalgesia has received sparse experimental attention compared to placebo analgesia. The aim of the present study was to investigate if personality traits and fear of pain could predict experimental nocebo hyperalgesia. One hundred and eleven healthy volunteers (76 females participated in an experimental study in which personality traits and fear of pain were measured prior to induction of thermal heat pain. Personality traits were measured by the Big-Five Inventory-10. Fear of pain was measured by the Fear of Pain Questionnaire III. Heat pain was induced by a PC-controlled thermode. Pain was measured by a computerized visual analog scale. Stress levels during the experiment were measured by numerical rating scales. The participants were randomized to a Nocebo group or to a no-treatment Natural History group. The results revealed that pain and stress levels were significantly higher in the Nocebo group after nocebo treatment. Mediation analysis showed that higher levels of the Fear of Pain Questionnaire III factor "fear of medical pain" significantly increased stress levels after nocebo treatment and that higher stress levels were associated with increased nocebo hyperalgesic responses. There were no significant associations between any of the personality factors and the nocebo hyperalgesic effect. The results from the present study suggest that dispositional fear of pain might be a useful predictor for nocebo hyperalgesia and emotional states concomitant with expectations of increased pain. Furthermore, measurement of traits that are specific to pain experience is probably better suited for prediction of nocebo hyperalgesic responses compared to broad measures of personality

  3. Increased coherence among striatal regions in the theta range during attentive wakefulness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Lepski

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The striatum, the largest component of the basal ganglia, is usually subdivided into associative, motor and limbic components. However, the electrophysiological interactions between these three subsystems during behavior remain largely unknown. We hypothesized that the striatum might be particularly active during exploratory behavior, which is presumably associated with increased attention. We investigated the modulation of local field potentials (LFPs in the striatum during attentive wakefulness in freely moving rats. To this end, we implanted microelectrodes into different parts of the striatum of Wistar rats, as well as into the motor, associative and limbic cortices. We then used electromyograms to identify motor activity and analyzed the instantaneous frequency, power spectra and partial directed coherence during exploratory behavior. We observed fine modulation in the theta frequency range of striatal LFPs in 92.5 ± 2.5% of all epochs of exploratory behavior. Concomitantly, the theta power spectrum increased in all striatal channels (P 0.7 between the primary motor cortex and the rostral part of the caudatoputamen nucleus, as well as among all striatal channels (P < 0.001. Conclusively, we observed a pattern of strong theta band activation in the entire striatum during attentive wakefulness, as well as a strong coherence between the motor cortex and the entire striatum. We suggest that this activation reflects the integration of motor, cognitive and limbic systems during attentive wakefulness.

  4. Increased GABAergic Efficacy of Central Amygdala Projections to Neuropeptide S Neurons in the Brainstem During Fear Memory Retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jüngling, Kay; Lange, Maren D; Szkudlarek, Hanna J; Lesting, Jörg; Erdmann, Frank S; Doengi, Michael; Kügler, Sebastian; Pape, Hans-Christian

    2015-11-01

    The canonical view on the central amygdala has evolved from a simple output station towards a highly organized microcircuitry, in which types of GABAergic neurons in centrolateral (CeL) and centromedial (CeM) subnuclei regulate fear expression and generalization. How these specific neuronal populations are connected to extra-amygdaloid target regions remains largely unknown. Here we show in mice that a subpopulation of GABAergic CeL and CeM neurons projects monosynaptically to brainstem neurons expressing neuropeptide S (NPS). The CeL neurons are PKCδ-negative and are activated during conditioned fear. During fear memory retrieval, the efficacy of this GABAergic influence on NPS neurons is enhanced. Moreover, a large proportion of these neurons (~50%) contain prodynorphin and somatostatin, two neuropeptides inhibiting NPS neurons. We conclude that CeL and CeM neurons inhibit NPS neurons in the brainstem by GABA release and that efficacy of this connection is strengthened upon fear memory retrieval. Thereby, this pathway provides a possible feedback mechanism between amygdala and brainstem routes involved in fear and stress coping. PMID:25936641

  5. Mindful attention to breath regulates emotions via increased amygdala-prefrontal cortex connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doll, Anselm; Hölzel, Britta K; Mulej Bratec, Satja; Boucard, Christine C; Xie, Xiyao; Wohlschläger, Afra M; Sorg, Christian

    2016-07-01

    Mindfulness practice is beneficial for emotion regulation; however, the neural mechanisms underlying this effect are poorly understood. The current study focuses on effects of attention-to-breath (ATB) as a basic mindfulness practice on aversive emotions at behavioral and brain levels. A key finding across different emotion regulation strategies is the modulation of amygdala and prefrontal activity. It is unclear how ATB relevant brain areas in the prefrontal cortex integrate with amygdala activation during emotional stimulation. We proposed that, during emotional stimulation, ATB down-regulates activation in the amygdala and increases its integration with prefrontal regions. To address this hypothesis, 26 healthy controls were trained in mindfulness-based attention-to-breath meditation for two weeks and then stimulated with aversive pictures during both attention-to-breath and passive viewing while undergoing fMRI. Data were controlled for breathing frequency. Results indicate that (1) ATB was effective in regulating aversive emotions. (2) Left dorso-medial prefrontal cortex was associated with ATB in general. (3) A fronto-parietal network was additionally recruited during emotional stimulation. (4) ATB down regulated amygdala activation and increased amygdala-prefrontal integration, with such increased integration being associated with mindfulness ability. Results suggest amygdala-dorsal prefrontal cortex integration as a potential neural pathway of emotion regulation by mindfulness practice. PMID:27033686

  6. Negative Mood Increases Selective Attention to Negatively Valenced Body Parts in Female Adolescents with Anorexia Nervosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svaldi, Jennifer; Bender, Caroline; Caffier, Detlef; Ivanova, Viliana; Mies, Nina; Fleischhaker, Christian; Tuschen-Caffier, Brunna

    2016-01-01

    Objective Previous research has yielded evidence of increased attentional processing of negatively valenced body parts in women with anorexia nervosa (AN), especially for those with high depressive symptomatology. The present study extended previous research by implementing an experimental mood manipulation. Method In a within-subjects design, female adolescents with AN (n = 12) and an age matched female control group (CG; n = 12) were given a negative and a positive mood induction at a one-week interval. After each mood induction, participants underwent a 3-min mirror exposure, while their eye movements were recorded. Results After the positive mood induction, both AN and CG participants displayed longer and more frequent gazes towards their self-defined most ugly relative to their self-defined most beautiful body part. However, after the negative mood induction, only females with AN were characterized by increased attention to their most ugly compared to their most beautiful body part, while CG participants’ attention distribution was balanced. Furthermore, in the negative (but not in the positive) mood induction condition gaze frequency and duration towards the most ugly body part was significantly stronger in the AN group relative to the CG. Discussion The results emphasize the role of negative mood in the maintenance of pathological information processing of the self-body. This increased body-related negativity-bias during negative mood may lead to the persistence and aggravation of AN patients’ body image disturbance. PMID:27123587

  7. Meditation increases the depth of information processing and improves the allocation of attention in space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, Sara; Singer, Wolf; Melloni, Lucia

    2012-01-01

    attention already after a 4-day meditation retreat. Together, these results suggest that practicing meditation enhances the speed with which attention can be allocated and relocated, thus increasing the depth of information processing and reducing response latency. PMID:22615691

  8. Neuronal Nitric-Oxide Synthase Deficiency Impairs the Long-Term Memory of Olfactory Fear Learning and Increases Odor Generalization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavesi, Eloisa; Heldt, Scott A.; Fletcher, Max L.

    2013-01-01

    Experience-induced changes associated with odor learning are mediated by a number of signaling molecules, including nitric oxide (NO), which is predominantly synthesized by neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) in the brain. In the current study, we investigated the role of nNOS in the acquisition and retention of conditioned olfactory fear. Mice…

  9. Social stress increases cortisol and hampers attention in adolescents with excess weight.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Verdejo-Garcia

    Full Text Available To experimentally examine if adolescents with excess weight are more sensitive to social stress and hence more sensitive to harmful effects of stress in cognition.We conducted an experimental study in 84 adolescents aged 12 to 18 years old classified in two groups based on age adjusted Body Mass Index percentile: Normal weight (n=42 and Excess weight (n=42. Both groups were exposed to social stress as induced by the virtual reality version of the Trier Social Stress Task--participants were requested to give a public speech about positive and negative aspects of their personalities in front of a virtual audience. The outcome measures were salivary cortisol levels and performance in cognitive tests before and after the social stressor. Cognitive tests included the CANTAB Rapid Visual Processing Test (measuring attention response latency and discriminability and the Iowa Gambling Task (measuring decision-making.Adolescents with excess weight compared to healthy weight controls displayed increased cortisol response and less improvement of attentional performance after the social stressor. Decision-making performance decreased after the social stressor in both groups.Adolescents who are overweight or obese have increased sensitivity to social stress, which detrimentally impacts attentional skills.

  10. Processing speed training increases the efficiency of attentional resource allocation in young adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wesley K Burge

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive training has been shown to improve performance on a range of tasks. However, the mechanisms underlying these improvements are still unclear. Given the wide range of transfer effects, it is likely that these effects are due to a factor common to a wide range of tasks. One such factor is a participant’s efficiency in allocating limited cognitive resources. The impact of a cognitive training program, Processing Speed Training (PST, on the allocation of resources to a set of visual tasks was measured using pupillometry in 10 young adults as compared to a control group of a 10 young adults (n = 20. PST is a well-studied computerized training program that involves identifying simultaneously presented central and peripheral stimuli. As training progresses, the task becomes increasingly more difficult, by including peripheral distracting stimuli and decreasing the duration of stimulus presentation. Analysis of baseline data confirmed that pupil diameter reflected cognitive effort. After training, participants randomized to PST used fewer attentional resources to perform complex visual tasks as compared to the control group. These pupil diameter data indicated that PST appears to increase the efficiency of attentional resource allocation. Increases in cognitive efficiency have been hypothesized to underlie improvements following experience with action video games, and improved cognitive efficiency has been hypothesized to underlie the benefits of processing speed training in older adults. These data reveal that these training schemes may share a common underlying mechanism of increasing cognitive efficiency in younger adults.

  11. Fear of pain potentiates nocebo hyperalgesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aslaksen, Per M; Lyby, Peter S

    2015-01-01

    Nocebo hyperalgesia has received sparse experimental attention compared to placebo analgesia. The aim of the present study was to investigate if personality traits and fear of pain could predict experimental nocebo hyperalgesia. One hundred and eleven healthy volunteers (76 females) participated in an experimental study in which personality traits and fear of pain were measured prior to induction of thermal heat pain. Personality traits were measured by the Big-Five Inventory-10. Fear of pain was measured by the Fear of Pain Questionnaire III. Heat pain was induced by a PC-controlled thermode. Pain was measured by a computerized visual analog scale. Stress levels during the experiment were measured by numerical rating scales. The participants were randomized to a Nocebo group or to a no-treatment Natural History group. The results revealed that pain and stress levels were significantly higher in the Nocebo group after nocebo treatment. Mediation analysis showed that higher levels of the Fear of Pain Questionnaire III factor "fear of medical pain" significantly increased stress levels after nocebo treatment and that higher stress levels were associated with increased nocebo hyperalgesic responses. There were no significant associations between any of the personality factors and the nocebo hyperalgesic effect. The results from the present study suggest that dispositional fear of pain might be a useful predictor for nocebo hyperalgesia and emotional states concomitant with expectations of increased pain. Furthermore, measurement of traits that are specific to pain experience is probably better suited for prediction of nocebo hyperalgesic responses compared to broad measures of personality. PMID:26491370

  12. How fear of falling can increase fall-risk in older adults: Applying psychological theory to practical observations

    OpenAIRE

    Young, WR; A Mark Williams

    2013-01-01

    This article was made available through the Brunel Open Access Fund. It is widely reported that fear of falling (FOF) has a profound and largely detrimental effect on balance performance in older adults. However, the mechanisms by which FOF influence postural stability are poorly understood. In the current article, we use psychological theory to explain FOF-related changes to postural control. First, we review literature describing associations between FOF and the 'stiffening' strategies o...

  13. Higher Physical Activity Is Associated with Increased Attentional Network Connectivity in the Healthy Elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Geon Ha; Im, Kiho; Kwon, Hunki; Seo, Sang Won; Ye, Byoung Seok; Cho, Hanna; Noh, Young; Lee, Jong Min; Kim, Sung Tae; Park, Sang Eon; Kim, Hojeong; Hwang, Jung Won; Kang, Sue J; Jeong, Jee Hyang; Na, Duk L

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the potential alterations in structural network properties related to physical activity (PA) in healthy elderly. We recruited 76 elderly individuals with normal cognition from Samsung Medical Center in Seoul, Korea. All participants underwent the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery and 3.0T brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Participants were subdivided into quartiles according to the International Physical Activity Questionnaire scores, which represents the amount of PA. Through graph theory based analyses, we compared global and local network topologies according to PA quartile. The higher PA group demonstrated better performance in speed processing compared to the lower PA group. Regional nodal strength also significantly increased in the higher PA group, which involved the bilateral middle frontal, bilateral inferior parietal, right medial orbitofrontal, right superior, and middle temporal gyri. These results were further replicated when the highest and the lowest quartile groups were compared in terms of regional nodal strengths and local efficiency. Our findings that the regional nodal strengths associated with the attentional network were increased in the higher PA group suggest the preventive effects of PA on age-related cognitive decline, especially in attention. PMID:27597826

  14. Psychoeducational group increases vaginal dilation for younger women and reduces sexual fears for women of all ages with gynecological carcinoma treated with radiotherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Purpose: The association between radiotherapy for gynecological carcinoma and sexual dysfunction is well established. Regular vaginal dilation is widely recommended to these women as a way for them to maintain vaginal health and good sexual functioning. However, the compliance rate with this recommendation is low. The purpose of this study was to test the effectiveness of a group psychoeducational program based on the 'information-motivation-behavioral skills' model of behavior change in increasing the rate of compliance. Methods and Materials: Thirty-two women with Stage I or II cervical or endometrial carcinoma who were being treated with radiotherapy were randomized and received either the experimental group program or the control intervention that consisted of written information and brief counseling. Outcome measures included global sexual health, knowledge about sexuality and cancer, fears about sexuality after cancer, and vaginal dilation compliance. Results: Younger women attending the experimental program (44.4%) were significantly more likely to follow recommendations for vaginal dilation than those who received the control intervention (5.6%). Women, regardless of age, who received the experimental intervention reported less fear about sex after cancer treatment. The older women who received the experimental intervention gained more sexual knowledge. There was no evidence that the experimental intervention improved global sexual health. Conclusions: This is the first controlled study to provide evidence of an intervention's effectiveness 1. in increasing women's vaginal dilation following radiotherapy for gynecological carcinoma and 2. in reducing their fears about sex after cancer. Most women, particularly younger women, are unlikely to follow the recommendation to dilate unless they are given assistance in overcoming their fears and taught behavioral skills

  15. The Attentional Boost Effect: Transient Increases in Attention to One Task Enhance Performance in a Second Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swallow, Khena M.; Jiang, Yuhong V.

    2010-01-01

    Recent work on event perception suggests that perceptual processing increases when events change. An important question is how such changes influence the way other information is processed, particularly during dual-task performance. In this study, participants monitored a long series of distractor items for an occasional target as they…

  16. Increased psychophysiological parameters of attention in non-psychotic individuals with auditory verbal hallucinations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Lutterveld, Remko; Oranje, Bob; Abramovic, Lucija; Willems, Anne E; Boks, Marco P M; Glenthøj, Birte Y; Kahn, René S; Sommer, Iris E C

    2010-01-01

    ). However, AVH are part of extensive and variable symptomatology in schizophrenia. For this reason non-psychotic individuals with AVH as an isolated symptom provide an excellent opportunity to investigate this relationship. METHODS: P300 waveforms, processing negativity and mismatch negativity were examined......OBJECTIVE: Schizophrenia is associated with aberrant event-related potentials (ERPs) such as reductions in P300, processing negativity and mismatch negativity amplitudes. These deficits may be related to the propensity of schizophrenia patients to experience auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH...... with an auditory oddball paradigm in 18 non-psychotic individuals with AVH and 18 controls. RESULTS: P300 amplitude was increased in the AVH group as compared to controls, reflecting superior effortful attention. A trend in the same direction was found for processing negativity. No significant...

  17. Increased Sensitivity to Perceptual Interference in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Stevens, Alexander A.; Maron, Leeza; Nigg, Joel T.; Cheung, Desmond; Ester, Edward F.; Awh, Edward

    2012-01-01

    Difficulty with selective attention is a frequent complaint of adult patients with ADHD, but selective attention tasks have not provided robust evidence of attentional dysfunction in this group. Two experiments examine this puzzle by distinguishing between failures of spatial selection and problems due to sensitivity to perceptual interference. In Experiment 1, we measured the level of perceptual interference generated by targets in crowded displays with nearby distractors by comparing lumina...

  18. Executive and attentional functions in chronic pain: Does performance decrease with increasing task load?

    OpenAIRE

    Oosterman, Joukje M; Derksen, Laura C; van Wijck, Albert JM; Kessels, Roy PC; Veldhuijzen, Dieuwke S

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and attentional control performance in pain patients.OBJECTIVE: To examine different aspects of executive and attentional control in chronic pain together with the confounding role of psychomotor slowin...

  19. Executive and Attentional Functions in Chronic Pain: Does Performance Decrease with Increasing Task Load?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joukje M Oosterman

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and attentional control performance in pain patients.

  20. Increased attentional focus modulates eye movements in a mixed antisaccade task for younger and older adults.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingxin Wang

    Full Text Available We examined performance in the antisaccade task for younger and older adults by comparing latencies and errors in what we defined as high attentional focus (mixed antisaccades and prosaccades in the same block and low attentional focus (antisaccades and prosaccades in separate blocks conditions. Shorter saccade latencies for correctly executed eye movements were observed for both groups in mixed, compared to blocked, antisaccade tasks, but antisaccade error rates were higher for older participants across both conditions. The results are discussed in relation to the inhibitory hypothesis, the goal neglect theory and attentional control theory.

  1. Spatial covert attention increases contrast sensitivity across the CSF: support for signal enhancement☆

    OpenAIRE

    Carrasco, Marisa; Penpeci-Talgar, Cigdem; Eckstein, Miguel

    2000-01-01

    This study is the first to report the benefits of spatial covert attention on contrast sensitivity in a wide range of spatial frequencies when a target alone was presented in the absence of a local post-mask. We used a peripheral precue (a small circle indicating the target location) to explore the effects of covert spatial attention on contrast sensitivity as assessed by orientation discrimination (Experiments 1–4), detection (Experiments 2 and 3) and localization (Experiment 3) tasks. In al...

  2. HOW TO INCREASE ATTENTION TO ADVERTISEMENTS ACROSS BABY BOOMERS, X AND Y GENERATIONS

    OpenAIRE

    Tavsan, Ahmet Nihat

    2015-01-01

    The article includes examination of the general aspects of Baby Boomer, X and Y generations in terms of demographic and psychographic dimensions and focuses on adding a new cluster of dimensions to discriminate them regarding their attention level to the communication content and advertisements that they incur.  In this study it is found out that the cohorts can be discriminated through their attention level  on the shared platform of advertising appeals of ; Creativity, Celebrity Endorsement...

  3. Aversive emotional interference impacts behavior and prefronto-striatal activity during increasing attentional control

    OpenAIRE

    Papazacharias, Apostolos; Taurisano, Paolo; Fazio, Leonardo; Gelao, Barbara; Di Giorgio, Annabella; Lo Bianco, Luciana; Quarto, Tiziana; Mancini, Marina; Porcelli, Annamaria; Romano, Raffaella; Caforio, Grazia; Todarello, Orlando; Popolizio, Teresa; Blasi, Giuseppe; Bertolino, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    Earlier studies have demonstrated that emotional stimulation modulates attentional processing during goal-directed behavior and related activity of a brain network including the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and the caudate nucleus. However, it is not clear how emotional interference modulates behavior and brain physiology during variation in attentional control, a relevant question for everyday life situations in which both emotional stimuli and cognitive load vary. The aim of this study was ...

  4. Unconditioned responses and functional fear networks in human classical conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linnman, Clas; Rougemont-Bücking, Ansgar; Beucke, Jan Carl; Zeffiro, Thomas A; Milad, Mohammed R

    2011-08-01

    Human imaging studies examining fear conditioning have mainly focused on the neural responses to conditioned cues. In contrast, the neural basis of the unconditioned response and the mechanisms by which fear modulates inter-regional functional coupling have received limited attention. We examined the neural responses to an unconditioned stimulus using a partial-reinforcement fear conditioning paradigm and functional MRI. The analysis focused on: (1) the effects of an unconditioned stimulus (an electric shock) that was either expected and actually delivered, or expected but not delivered, and (2) on how related brain activity changed across conditioning trials, and (3) how shock expectation influenced inter-regional coupling within the fear network. We found that: (1) the delivery of the shock engaged the red nucleus, amygdale, dorsal striatum, insula, somatosensory and cingulate cortices, (2) when the shock was expected but not delivered, only the red nucleus, the anterior insular and dorsal anterior cingulate cortices showed activity increases that were sustained across trials, and (3) psycho-physiological interaction analysis demonstrated that fear led to increased red nucleus coupling to insula but decreased hippocampus coupling to the red nucleus, thalamus and cerebellum. The hippocampus and the anterior insula may serve as hubs facilitating the switch between engagement of a defensive immediate fear network and a resting network. PMID:21377494

  5. Meditation increases the depth of information processing and improves the allocation of attention in space

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara evan Leeuwen

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available During meditation, practitioners are required to center their attention on a specific object for extended periods of time. When their thoughts get diverted, they learn to quickly disengage from the distracter. We hypothesized that learning to respond to the dual demand of engaging attention on specific objects and disengaging quickly from distracters enhances the efficiency by which meditation practitioners can allocate attention. We tested this hypothesis in a global-to-local task while measuring electroencephalographic activity from a group of eight highly trained Buddhist monks and nuns and a group of eight age and education matched controls with no previous meditation experience. Specifically, we investigated the effect of attentional training on the global precedence effect, i.e., faster detection of targets on a global than on a local level. We expected to find a reduced global precedence effect in meditation practitioners but not in controls, reflecting that meditators can more quickly disengage their attention from the dominant global level. Analysis of reaction times confirmed this prediction. To investigate the underlying changes in brain activity and their time course, we analyzed event-related potentials. Meditators showed an enhanced ability to select the respective target level, as reflected by enhanced processing of target level information. In contrast with control group, which showed a local target selection effect only in the P1 and a global target selection effect in the P3 component, meditators showed effects of local information processing in the P1, N2 and P3 and of global processing for the N1, N2 and P3. Thus, meditators seem to display enhanced depth of processing. In addition, meditation altered the uptake of information such that meditators selected target level information earlier in the processing sequence than controls. In a longitudinal experiment, we could replicate the behavioral effects, suggesting that

  6. Methylphenidate enhances extinction of contextual fear

    OpenAIRE

    Abraham, Antony D.; Cunningham, Christopher L.; Lattal, K. Matthew

    2012-01-01

    Methylphenidate (MPH, Ritalin) is a norepinephrine and dopamine transporter blocker that is widely used in humans for treatment of attention deficit disorder and narcolepsy. Although there is some evidence that targeted microinjections of MPH may enhance fear acquisition, little is known about the effect of MPH on fear extinction. Here, we show that MPH, administered before or immediately following extinction of contextual fear, will enhance extinction retention in C57BL/6 mice. Animals that ...

  7. Emotional modulation of the attentional blink is awareness-dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Wenli; Meng, Qianli; Chen, Lin; Zhou, Ke

    2012-01-01

    It is well known that emotion can modulate attentional processes. Previous studies have shown that even under restricted awareness, emotional facial expressions (especially threat-related) can guide the direction of spatial attention. However, it remains unclear whether emotional facial expressions under restricted awareness can affect temporal attention. To address this issue, we used a modified attentional blink (AB) paradigm in which masked (Experiment 1) or unmasked (Experiment 2) emotional faces (fearful or neutral) were presented before the AB sequence. We found that, in comparison with neutral faces, masked fearful faces significantly decreased the AB magnitude (Experiment 1), whereas unmasked fearful faces significantly increased the AB magnitude (Experiment 2). These results indicate that effects of emotional expression on the AB are modulated by the level of awareness. PMID:23029507

  8. Emotional modulation of the attentional blink is awareness-dependent.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenli Qian

    Full Text Available It is well known that emotion can modulate attentional processes. Previous studies have shown that even under restricted awareness, emotional facial expressions (especially threat-related can guide the direction of spatial attention. However, it remains unclear whether emotional facial expressions under restricted awareness can affect temporal attention. To address this issue, we used a modified attentional blink (AB paradigm in which masked (Experiment 1 or unmasked (Experiment 2 emotional faces (fearful or neutral were presented before the AB sequence. We found that, in comparison with neutral faces, masked fearful faces significantly decreased the AB magnitude (Experiment 1, whereas unmasked fearful faces significantly increased the AB magnitude (Experiment 2. These results indicate that effects of emotional expression on the AB are modulated by the level of awareness.

  9. Food fears

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radurisation can give a new lease of shelf life to food and cut down contamination, but it is bound to cause problems - even among comparatively tame South African consumers. In this article the facts about radurization are discussed: the labelling of irradiated products, the problem of making a bad product good by using irradiation, consumer pressure, attitudes, fears and resistance. The economics of radurised foodstuffs are also discussed

  10. Attention to irrelevant contexts decreases as training increases: Evidence from eye-fixations in a human predictive learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aristizabal, José A; Ramos-Álvarez, Manuel M; Callejas-Aguilera, José E; Rosas, Juan M

    2016-03-01

    Participants were trained in a human predictive learning task in which they had to predict whether the ingestion of a given food (cue) by the imaginary customer of an imaginary restaurant (context) was followed by gastric malaise (outcome). One food was always followed by gastric malaise in one of the contexts, while other foods were not followed by gastric malaise in the same, or in an alternative context. Predictive responses and eye-fixations were recorded throughout the 48 training trials with each cue involved in the task. In agreement with the predictions of the Attentional Theory of Context Processing, attention to the contexts measured through eye-fixations decreased while attention to the cues increased as training progressed. The results of this study give support to the idea that contexts are actively processed at the beginning of acquisition, and that this processing decreases as training increases. PMID:26746587

  11. Methylphenidate Enhances Extinction of Contextual Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abraham, Antony D.; Cunningham, Christopher L.; Lattal, K. Matthew

    2012-01-01

    Methylphenidate (MPH, Ritalin) is a norepinephrine and dopamine transporter blocker that is widely used in humans for treatment of attention deficit disorder and narcolepsy. Although there is some evidence that targeted microinjections of MPH may enhance fear acquisition, little is known about the effect of MPH on fear extinction. Here, we show…

  12. Immunization against social fear learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golkar, Armita; Olsson, Andreas

    2016-06-01

    Social fear learning offers an efficient way to transmit information about potential threats; little is known, however, about the learning processes that counteract the social transmission of fear. In three separate experiments, we found that safety information transmitted from another individual (i.e., demonstrator) during preexposure prevented subsequent observational fear learning (Experiments 1-3), and this effect was maintained in a new context involving direct threat confrontation (Experiment 3). This protection from observational fear learning was specific to conditions in which information about both safety and danger was transmitted from the same demonstrator (Experiments 2-3) and was unaffected by increasing the number of the safety demonstrators (Experiment 3). Collectively, these findings demonstrate that observational preexposure can limit social transmission of fear. Future research is needed to better understand the conditions under which such effects generalize across individual demonstrators. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27077756

  13. The development of attention to dynamic facial emotions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heck, Alison; Hock, Alyson; White, Hannah; Jubran, Rachel; Bhatt, Ramesh S

    2016-07-01

    Appropriate processing of emotions is paramount for successful social functioning. Adults' enhanced attention to negative emotions such as fear is thought to be a critical aspect of this adaptive functioning. Prior studies indicate that increased attention to fear relative to positive or neutral emotions begins at around 7months of age, and it has been suggested that this negativity bias is related to self-locomotion. However, these studies mostly used static faces, potentially limiting information available to the infants. In the current study, 3.5-month-olds (n=24) and 5-month-olds (n=24) were exposed to dynamic faces expressing fear, happy, or neutral emotions and a distracting peripheral checkerboard. The 5-month-olds looked proportionally longer at the face compared with the checkerboard when the face was fearful than when it was happy or neutral. Conversely, the 3.5-month-olds did not differentiate their attention as a function of emotion. These results indicate that the onset of enhanced attention to fear occurs between 3.5 and 5months of age. This finding raises questions about the developmental mechanisms that drive attentional bias given that the idea of the onset of self-locomotion being a catalyst for the development of negativity bias might no longer hold. PMID:27064842

  14. Enhanced discriminative fear learning of phobia-irrelevant stimuli in spider-fearful individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carina eMosig

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Avoidance is considered as a central hallmark of all anxiety disorders. The acquisition and expression of avoidance which leads to the maintenance and exacerbation of pathological fear is closely linked to Pavlovian and operant conditioning processes. Changes in conditionability might represent a key feature of all anxiety disorders but the exact nature of these alterations might vary across different disorders. To date, no information is available on specific changes in conditionability for disorder-irrelevant stimuli in specific phobia (SP. The first aim of this study was to investigate changes in fear acquisition and extinction in spider-fearful individuals as compared to non-fearful participants by using the de novo fear conditioning paradigm. Secondly, we aimed to determine whether differences in the magnitude of context-dependent fear retrieval exist between spider-fearful and non-fearful individuals. Our findings point to an enhanced fear discrimination in spider-fearful individuals as compared to non-fearful individuals at both the physiological and subjective level. The enhanced fear discrimination in spider-fearful individuals was neither mediated by increased state anxiety, depression, nor stress tension. Spider-fearful individuals displayed no changes in extinction learning and/or fear retrieval. Surprisingly, we found no evidence for context-dependent modulation of fear retrieval in either group. Here we provide first evidence that spider-fearful individuals show an enhanced discriminative fear learning of phobia-irrelevant (de novo stimuli. Our findings provide novel insights into the role of fear acquisition and expression for the development and maintenance of maladaptive responses in the course of SP.

  15. Blocking miRNA Biogenesis in Adult Forebrain Neurons Enhances Seizure Susceptibility, Fear Memory, and Food Intake by Increasing Neuronal Responsiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiorenza, Anna; Lopez-Atalaya, Jose P; Rovira, Victor; Scandaglia, Marilyn; Geijo-Barrientos, Emilio; Barco, Angel

    2016-04-01

    The RNase Dicer is essential for the maturation of most microRNAs, a molecular system that plays an essential role in fine-tuning gene expression. To gain molecular insight into the role of Dicer and the microRNA system in brain function, we conducted 2 complementary RNA-seq screens in the hippocampus of inducible forebrain-restricted Dicer1 mutants aimed at identifying the microRNAs primarily affected by Dicer loss and their targets, respectively. Functional genomics analyses predicted the main biological processes and phenotypes associated with impaired microRNA maturation, including categories related to microRNA biology, signal transduction, seizures, and synaptic transmission and plasticity. Consistent with these predictions, we found that, soon after recombination, Dicer-deficient mice exhibited an exaggerated seizure response, enhanced induction of immediate early genes in response to different stimuli, stronger and more stable fear memory, hyperphagia, and increased excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons. In the long term, we also observed slow and progressive excitotoxic neurodegeneration. Overall, our results indicate that interfering with microRNA biogenesis causes an increase in neuronal responsiveness and disrupts homeostatic mechanisms that protect the neuron against overactivation, which may explain both the initial and late phenotypes associated with the loss of Dicer in excitatory neurons. PMID:25595182

  16. Fear of Fear and the Anxiety Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambless, Dianne L.

    The fear of fear present in agoraphobics can be broken down into a fear of the body sensations associated with the panic attacks that plague agoraphobics and maladaptive thoughts about the possible consequences of panic. In a retrospective examination of clinical files, 32 agoraphobic patients were compared to 36 patients with simple social…

  17. Mice discriminate between stationary and moving 2D shapes: application to the object recognition task to increase attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braida, Daniela; Donzelli, Andrea; Martucci, Roberta; Ponzoni, Luisa; Pauletti, Alberto; Langus, Alan; Sala, Mariaelvina

    2013-04-01

    Selective attention can be assessed with the novel object recognition (NOR) test. In the standard version of this test the selection of objects to be used is critical. We created a modified version of NOR, the virtual object recognition test (VORT) in mice, where the 3D objects were replaced with highly discriminated geometrical shapes and presented on two 3.5-inch widescreen displays. No difference in the discrimination index (from 5min to 96h of inter-trial) was found between NOR and VORT. Scopolamine and mecamylamine decreased the discrimination index. Conversely, the discrimination index increased when nicotine was given to mice. No further improvement in the discrimination index was observed when nicotine was injected in mice presented with highly discriminable shapes. To test the possibility that object movements increased mice's attention in the VORT, different movements were applied to the same geometrical shapes previously presented. Mice were able to distinguish among different movements (horizontal, vertical, oblique). Notably, the shapes previously found not distinguishable when stationary were better discriminated when moving. Collectively, these findings indicate that VORT, based on virtual geometric simple shapes, offers the possibility to obtain rapid information on amnesic/pro-amnestic potential of new drugs. The introduction of motion is a strong cue that makes the task more valuable to study attention. PMID:23291156

  18. Visual working memory capacity increases between ages 3 and 8 years, controlling for gains in attention, perception, and executive control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pailian, Hrag; Libertus, Melissa E; Feigenson, Lisa; Halberda, Justin

    2016-08-01

    Research in adults has aimed to characterize constraints on the capacity of Visual Working Memory (VWM), in part because of the system's broader impacts throughout cognition. However, less is known about how VWM develops in childhood. Existing work has reached conflicting conclusions as to whether VWM storage capacity increases after infancy, and if so, when and by how much. One challenge is that previous studies did not control for developmental changes in attention and executive processing, which also may undergo improvement. We investigated the development of VWM storage capacity in children from 3 to 8 years of age, and in adults, while controlling for developmental change in exogenous and endogenous attention and executive control. Our results reveal that, when controlling for improvements in these abilities, VWM storage capacity increases across development and approaches adult-like levels between ages 6 and 8 years. More generally, this work highlights the value of estimating working memory, attention, perception, and decision-making components together. PMID:27225467

  19. Does Watching the News Affect Fear of Terrorism? The Importance of Media Exposure on Terrorism Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nellis, Ashley Marie; Savage, Joanne

    2012-01-01

    Several authors have proposed that media hype elevates perceptions of risk and fear of crime. Research suggests that fear of crime is related to the overall amount of media consumption, resonance of news reports, how much attention the individual pays to the news, and how credible he or she believes it to be. The present study examines whether the…

  20. Testosterone may increase selective attention to threat in young male macaques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacreuse, Agnès; King, Hanna M; Kurdziel, Laura B; Partan, Sarah R; Caldwell, Kaelyn M; Chiavetta, Margaret R; Millette, Matthew M; Meyer, Jerrold S; Grow, Daniel R

    2010-11-01

    Animal studies indicate that sex hormones have widespread effects on the brain, cognition and emotion, but findings in humans are inconsistent. Well-controlled studies in nonhuman primates are crucial to resolve these discrepancies. In this study, we examined the effects of testosterone (T) on emotion in male rhesus monkeys. Six young adult males were tested on two emotional tasks during three hormonal conditions in a crossover design: when intact at baseline and when pharmacologically hypogonadal with add-back of T or placebo. The emotional tasks were the Approach-Avoidance task, which tested behavioral responses to three categories of objects (familiar, novel, and negative) and a Social Playback task which tested behavioral responses to scenes of unfamiliar conspecifics engaged in three types of social activities (neutral, positive, or negative). Following a 4-week baseline period, monkeys were treated with Depot Lupron, 200μg/kg before being randomly assigned to one of two treatment groups: Depot Lupron+Testosterone Enanthate (TE, 20mg/kg) or Depot Lupron+oil vehicle. In each treatment group, monkeys received one injection of Lupron and one injection of TE or one injection of Lupron and one injection of oil at the onset of a 4-week testing period, before crossing over to the alternate treatment for an additional 4weeks of testing. TE treatment had no effect on behavioral measures in the Approach-Avoidance task. For the Social Playback task, however, TE significantly increased watching time of video clips which depicted fights between unfamiliar conspecifics. The enhancing effect of T on watching time for negative social scenes is consistent with human data suggesting that T decreases aversion or facilitates approach to threatening social stimuli. Further studies are needed to understand the mechanisms by which T may mediate responsiveness to social threat in male primates. PMID:20804760

  1. Hippocampal Structural Plasticity Accompanies the Resulting Contextual Fear Memory Following Stress and Fear Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giachero, Marcelo; Calfa, Gaston D.; Molina, Victor A.

    2013-01-01

    The present research investigated the resulting contextual fear memory and structural plasticity changes in the dorsal hippocampus (DH) following stress and fear conditioning. This combination enhanced fear retention and increased the number of total and mature dendritic spines in DH. Intra-basolateral amygdala (BLA) infusion of midazolam prior to…

  2. Age-related deficits in selective attention during encoding increase demands on episodic reconstruction during context retrieval: An ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Taylor; Strunk, Jonathan; Arndt, Jason; Duarte, Audrey

    2016-06-01

    Previous event-related potential (ERP) and neuroimaging evidence suggests that directing attention toward single item-context associations compared to intra-item features at encoding improves context memory performance and reduces demands on strategic retrieval operations in young and older adults. In everyday situations, however, there are multiple event features competing for our attention. It is not currently known how selectively attending to one contextual feature while attempting to ignore another influences context memory performance and the processes that support successful retrieval in the young and old. We investigated this issue in the current ERP study. Young and older participants studied pictures of objects in the presence of two contextual features: a color and a scene, and their attention was directed to the object's relationship with one of those contexts. Participants made context memory decisions for both attended and unattended contexts and rated their confidence in those decisions. Behavioral results showed that while both groups were generally successful in applying selective attention during context encoding, older adults were less confident in their context memory decisions for attended features and showed greater dependence in context memory accuracy for attended and unattended contextual features (i.e., hyper-binding). ERP results were largely consistent between age groups but older adults showed a more pronounced late posterior negativity (LPN) implicated in episodic reconstruction processes. We conclude that age-related suppression deficits during encoding result in reduced selectivity in context memory, thereby increasing subsequent demands on episodic reconstruction processes when sought after details are not readily retrieved. PMID:27094851

  3. Extinction, applied after retrieval of auditory fear memory, selectively increases zinc-finger protein 268 and phosphorylated ribosomal protein S6 expression in prefrontal cortex and lateral amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, Vincenzo; Roquet, Rheall F; DeMis, John; Chiamulera, Cristiano; Monfils, Marie-H

    2014-11-01

    Retrieval of consolidated memories induces a labile phase during which memory can be disrupted or updated through a reconsolidation process. A central component of behavioral updating during reconsolidation using a retrieval-extinction manipulation (Ret+Ext) is the synaptic removal of a calcium-permeable-α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptor (CP-AMPARs) in the lateral amygdala-a metabotropic GluR1 receptor (mGluR1) dependent mechanism. In the present study, we investigate the effect of Ret+Ext on the expression of molecular markers that could play a role in the reconsolidation process. Specifically, we tested the effects of Ret+Ext on the global expression of zinc-finger 268 protein (Zif268), a marker previously found to be implicated in memory reconsolidation, to confirm its occurrence after retrieval (Ret) and Ret+Ext. We also evaluated the global expression of phosphorylated ribosomal protein S6 (rpS6P), here proposed as a marker of the mGluR1-mediated memory process induced by Ret+Ext. The expression of both markers (zif268, rpS6P) was assessed by immunolocalization in prelimbic cortex (PRL), infralimbic cortex (IL), ventral subdivision of the lateral amygdala (LA) and hippocampus CA1 (CA1) in fear-conditioned rats. Our results showed that retrieval and Ret+Ext, but not extinction alone, increased Zif268 expression in prefrontal cortex and lateral amygdala. Ret+Ext, but not retrieval, retrieval followed by context exposure or extinction alone, increased the expression of rpS6P in prefrontal cortex and LA. In summary, (i) Zif268 increased after retrieval confirming that reconsolidation is engaged in our conditions, (ii) Zif268 increased after Ret+Ext confirming that it does not simply reflect an extinction or reconsolidation disruption (Zif268 level of expression should be lower in both cases) and (iii) rpS6P increased after Ret+Ext, but not after extinction, suggesting, as expected, a potential mGluR1 mediated molecular mechanism specific

  4. The Time Is Now: Attention Increases to Transgender Health in the United States but Scientific Knowledge Gaps Remain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacCarthy, Sarah; Reisner, Sari L; Nunn, Amy; Perez-Brumer, Amaya; Operario, Don

    2015-12-01

    Attention to transgender health has dramatically increased in the U.S. Scientific knowledge gaps in empirical research, however, remain and act as barriers to achieving transgender-related health equity. We conducted a search using PubMed and PsycINFO to identify gaps in empirical, peer-reviewed publications related to adult transgender health in the U.S. between 1981 and 2013. We synthesized these findings and commented on opportunities for improving health research. Reducing health disparities and advancing transgender-related health equity requires greater investment in research that addresses current gaps to more comprehensively respond to the diverse health needs of transgender people. PMID:26788768

  5. Greater fear of re-injury and increased tibial translation in patients who later sustain an ACL graft rupture or a contralateral ACL rupture: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tagesson, Sofi; Kvist, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    The aim was to compare fear of re-injury, patient reported function, static and dynamic tibial translation and muscle strength assessed before and 5 weeks after an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction between individuals who sustained a subsequent ACL graft rupture or a contralateral ACL injury within 5 years after the reconstruction, and individuals with no subsequent injury. Nineteen patients were investigated before, and 5 weeks after an ACL reconstruction with a quadruple hamstring tendon graft. At 5 years follow up, 3 patients had sustained an ACL graft rupture and 2 patients had sustained a contralateral ACL rupture. Fear of re-injury, confidence with the knee, patient reported function, activity level, static and dynamic tibial translation and muscle strength were assessed. The re-injured group reported greater fear of re-injury and had greater static tibial translation in both knees before the ACL reconstruction compared to those who did not sustain another ACL injury. There were no other differences between groups. In conclusion, fear of re-injury and static tibial translation before the index ACL reconstruction were greater in patients who later on suffered an ACL graft rupture or a contralateral ACL rupture. These factors may predict a subsequent ACL injury. PMID:25894209

  6. Increased Coupling in the Saliency Network is the main cause/effect of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    CERN Document Server

    Ji, Xiaoxi; Zhang, Jie; Ge, Tian; Sun, Li; Wang, Yufeng; Feng, Jianfeng

    2011-01-01

    To uncover the underlying mechanisms of mental disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) for improving both early diagnosis and therapy, it is increasingly recognized that we need a better understanding of how the brain's functional connections are altered. A new brain wide association study (BWAS) has been developed and used to investigate functional connectivity changes in the brains of patients suffering from ADHD using resting state fMRI data. To reliably find out the most significantly altered functional connectivity links and associate them with ADHD, a meta-analysis on a cohort of ever reported largest population comprising 249 patients and 253 healthy controls is carried out. The greatest change in ADHD patients was the increased coupling of the saliency network involving the anterior cingulate gyrus and anterior insula. A voxel-based morphometry analysis was also carried out but this revealed no evidence in the ADHD patients for altered grey matter volumes in the regions showi...

  7. Visually depicting cancer fears: Beyond biomedical concerns

    OpenAIRE

    Carolyn Brooks; Jennifer Poudrier; Roanne Thomas

    2014-01-01

    This manuscript is a reaction to the high prevalence of breast cancer amongst Aboriginal women. Our work calls for more attention to the effects of race, gender, and class on cancer fears and related experiences. The shock of a cancer diagnosis and fears of recurrence can leave patients feeling that their lives are out of control. Combining the visual method of photovoice with focus groups and in-depth interviews, we develop an understanding of cancer experiences that includes fea...

  8. Determining the focus of driving fears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, J E; Deane, F P; Podd, J V

    2000-01-01

    Fear of driving has been recognized as a complex diagnostic entity. Studies on flying phobia have drawn similar conclusions, although increasing clarity has been gained through research that indicates that there may be subtypes of flying phobia based on the focus of fear. However, it is unclear if similar subtypes exist for fear of driving. The aim of the present study was to conduct a preliminary investigation of driving fear subtypes and to clarify further whether there were differences between driving-fearful respondents who had been in a motor vehicle accident (MVA) and those who had not. Eighty-five driving-fearful, media-recruited respondents completed a questionnaire that assessed anxiety, avoidance, and concerns related to their driving fears. The sample had high expectations of negative events while driving. There were no significant differences between those who had experienced an MVA and those who had not on various measures of fear severity. Cluster analysis revealed two main foci of fear, one characterized by danger expectancies and the other based on anxiety expectancies and unpleasant driving situations. This emphasizes the importance of assessing both internal and external foci of fear. Although this finding is consistent with the results obtained for flying phobia, more research is required to replicate and extend these results and to develop and evaluate differential treatment programs. PMID:11095540

  9. Memory suppression trades prolonged fear and sleep-dependent fear plasticity for the avoidance of current fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuriyama, Kenichi; Honma, Motoyasu; Yoshiike, Takuya; Kim, Yoshiharu

    2013-07-01

    Sleep deprivation immediately following an aversive event reduces fear by preventing memory consolidation during homeostatic sleep. This suggests that acute insomnia might act prophylactically against the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) even though it is also a possible risk factor for PTSD. We examined total sleep deprivation and memory suppression to evaluate the effects of these interventions on subsequent aversive memory formation and fear conditioning. Active suppression of aversive memory impaired retention of event memory. However, although the remembered fear was more reduced in sleep-deprived than sleep-control subjects, suppressed fear increased, and seemed to abandon the sleep-dependent plasticity of fear. Active memory suppression, which provides a psychological model for Freud's ego defense mechanism, enhances fear and casts doubt on the potential of acute insomnia as a prophylactic measure against PTSD. Our findings bring into question the role of sleep in aversive-memory consolidation in clinical PTSD pathophysiology.

  10. Greater fear of re-injury and increased tibial translation in patients who later sustain an ACL graft rupture or a contralateral ACL rupture : a pilot study

    OpenAIRE

    Tagesson (Sonesson), Sofi; Kvist, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    The aim was to compare fear of re-injury, patient reported function, static and dynamic tibial translation and muscle strength assessed before and 5 weeks after an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction between individuals who sustained a subsequent ACL graft rupture or a contralateral ACL injury within 5 years after the reconstruction, and individuals with no subsequent injury. Nineteen patients were investigated before, and 5 weeks after an ACL reconstruction with a quadruple hamst...

  11. Fears and Phobias

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... the situation calls for. Many people have a fear of public speaking . Whether it's giving a report in class, speaking ... cloudy. A guy with social phobia experiences intense fear of public speaking or interacting, and may be afraid to answer ...

  12. PTSD symptom severity is associated with increased recruitment of top-down attentional control in a trauma-exposed sample

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart F. White

    2015-01-01

    Conclusions: We suggest that these data may reflect two phenomena associated with increased PTSD symptomatology in combat-exposed, but PTSD negative, armed services members. First, these data indicate increased emotional responsiveness by: (i the positive relationship between PTSD symptom severity and amygdala responsiveness to emotional relative to neutral stimuli; (ii greater BOLD response as a function of PTSD symptom severity in regions implicated in emotion (striatum and representation (occipital and temporal cortices during emotional relative to neutral conditions; and (iii increased connectivity between the amygdala and regions implicated in emotion (insula/caudate and representation (middle temporal cortex as a function of PTSD symptom severity during emotional relative to neutral trials. Second, these data indicate a greater need for the recruitment of regions implicated in top down attention as indicated by (i greater BOLD response in superior/middle frontal gyrus as a function of PTSD symptom severity in task relative to view conditions; (ii greater BOLD response in dmFC/dACC, lateral frontal and inferior parietal cortices as a function of PTSD symptom severity in emotional relative to neutral conditions and (iii greater functional connectivity between the amygdala and inferior parietal cortex as a function of PTSD symptom severity during emotional relative to neutral conditions.

  13. The advances of fear

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This book treats of four sensible topics of the last decade - the nuclear industry, the cloning, Internet and the greenhouse effect - in order to analyze the irrational or organized fears among the public: what do we fear and why? How this fear is shown? Which questions need to be answered and how? (J.S.)

  14. A climate of fear

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Garner, Tom Alexander; Grimshaw, Mark Nicholas

    2011-01-01

    This paper proposes a framework that incorporates fear, acoustics, thought processing and digital game sound theory; with the potential to not only improve understanding of our relationship with fear, but also generate a foundation for reliable and significant manipulation of the fear experience....

  15. Remembering the object you fear: brain potentials during recognition of spiders in spider-fearful individuals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaroslaw M Michalowski

    Full Text Available In the present study we investigated long-term memory for unpleasant, neutral and spider pictures in 15 spider-fearful and 15 non-fearful control individuals using behavioral and electrophysiological measures. During the initial (incidental encoding, pictures were passively viewed in three separate blocks and were subsequently rated for valence and arousal. A recognition memory task was performed one week later in which old and new unpleasant, neutral and spider pictures were presented. Replicating previous results, we found enhanced memory performance and higher confidence ratings for unpleasant when compared to neutral materials in both animal fearful individuals and controls. When compared to controls high animal fearful individuals also showed a tendency towards better memory accuracy and significantly higher confidence during recognition of spider pictures, suggesting that memory of objects prompting specific fear is also facilitated in fearful individuals. In line, spider-fearful but not control participants responded with larger ERP positivity for correctly recognized old when compared to correctly rejected new spider pictures, thus showing the same effects in the neural signature of emotional memory for feared objects that were already discovered for other emotional materials. The increased fear memory for phobic materials observed in the present study in spider-fearful individuals might result in an enhanced fear response and reinforce negative beliefs aggravating anxiety symptomatology and hindering recovery.

  16. Increased Neural Responses to Reward in Adolescents and Young Adults With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Their Unaffected Siblings

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Rhein, Daniel; Cools, Roshan; Zwiers, Marcel P.; van der Schaaf, Marieke; Franke, Barbara; Luman, Marjolein; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Heslenfeld, Dirk J.; Hoekstra, Pieter J.; Hartman, Catharina A.; Faraone, Stephen V.; van Rooij, Daan; van Dongen, Eelco V.; Lojowska, Maria; Mennes, Maarten; Buitelaar, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Objective Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a heritable neuropsychiatric disorder associated with abnormal reward processing. Limited and inconsistent data exist about the neural mechanisms underlying this abnormality. Furthermore, it is unknown whether reward processing is abnormal in unaffected siblings of participants with ADHD. Method We used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate brain responses during reward anticipation and receipt with an adapted monetary incentive delay task in a large sample of adolescents and young adults with ADHD (n=150), their unaffected siblings (n=92), and control participants (n=108), all of the same age. Results Participants with ADHD showed, relative to control participants, increased responses in the anterior cingulate, anterior frontal cortex, and cerebellum during reward anticipation, and in the orbitofrontal, occipital cortex, and ventral striatum during reward receipt. Responses of unaffected siblings were increased in these regions as well, except for the cerebellum during anticipation and the orbitofrontal cortex during receipt. Conclusion ADHD in adolescents and young adults is associated with enhanced neural responses in frontostriatal circuitry to anticipation and receipt of reward. The findings support models emphasizing aberrant reward processing in ADHD and suggest that processing of reward is subject to familial influences. Future studies using standard monetary incentive delay task parameters have to replicate our findings. PMID:25901776

  17. Unconditioned responses and functional fear networks in human classical conditioning

    OpenAIRE

    Linnman, Clas; Rougemont-Bücking, Ansgar; Beucke, Jan Carl; Zeffiro, Thomas A.; Milad, Mohammed R.

    2011-01-01

    Human imaging studies examining fear conditioning have mainly focused on the neural responses to conditioned cues. In contrast, the neural basis of the unconditioned response and the mechanisms by which fear modulates inter-regional functional coupling have received limited attention. We examined the neural responses to an unconditioned stimulus using a partial-reinforcement fear conditioning paradigm and functional MRI. The analysis focused on: (1) the effects of an unconditioned stimulus (a...

  18. Fear of childbirth in pregnant women: External and internal factors.

    OpenAIRE

    Kashshapova, E. V.; Lopukhova, O. G.

    2015-01-01

    Fear of childbirth (FOC) is an important psychological problem that is studied worldwide because it affects the well-being of pregnant women. However, in Russia, this problem does not receive adequate attention among researchers. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the conditionality of fear of childbirth (FOC) in pregnant women by external and internal factors, which we assumed were the reasons for this fear. As external factors, we considered socio-demographic indicators (e....

  19. Fear of childbirth in pregnant women: external and internal factors

    OpenAIRE

    LOPUKHOVA OLGA G.; KASHSHAPOVA ELENA V.

    2015-01-01

    Fear of childbirth (FOC) is an important psychological problem that is studied worldwide because it affects the well-being of pregnant women. However, in Russia, this problem does not receive adequate attention among researchers. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the conditionality of fear of childbirth (FOC) in pregnant women by external and internal factors, which we assumed were the reasons for this fear. As external factors, we considered socio-demographic indicators (e....

  20. Cognitive-behavioural therapy-based intervention to reduce fear of falling in older people: therapy development and randomised controlled trial - the Strategies for Increasing Independence, Confidence and Energy (STRIDE) study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parry, Steve W; Bamford, Claire; Deary, Vincent; Finch, Tracy L; Gray, Jo; MacDonald, Claire; McMeekin, Peter; Sabin, Neil J; Steen, I Nick; Whitney, Sue L; McColl, Elaine M

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Falls cause fear, anxiety and loss of confidence, resulting in activity avoidance, social isolation and increasing frailty. The umbrella term for these problems is 'fear of falling', seen in up to 85% of older adults who fall. Evidence of effectiveness of physical and psychological interventions is limited, with no previous studies examining the role of an individually delivered cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) approach. OBJECTIVES Primary objective To develop and then determine the effectiveness of a new CBT intervention (CBTi) delivered by health-care assistants (HCAs) plus usual care compared with usual care alone in reducing fear of falling. Secondary objectives To measure the impact of the intervention on falls, injuries, functional abilities, anxiety/depression, quality of life, social participation and loneliness; investigate the acceptability of the intervention for patients, family members and professionals and factors that promote or inhibit its implementation; and measure the costs and benefits of the intervention. DESIGN Phase I CBTi development. Phase II Parallel-group patient randomised controlled trial (RCT) of the new CBTi plus usual care compared with usual care alone. SETTING Multidisciplinary falls services. PARTICIPANTS Consecutive community-dwelling older adults, both sexes, aged ≥ 60 years, with excessive or undue fear of falling per Falls Efficacy Scale-International (FES-I) score of > 23. INTERVENTIONS Phase I Development of the CBTi. The CBTi was developed following patient interviews and taught to HCAs to maximise the potential for uptake and generalisability to a UK NHS setting. Phase II RCT. The CBTi was delivered by HCAs weekly for 8 weeks, with a 6-month booster session plus usual care. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES These were assessed at baseline, 8 weeks, 6 months and 12 months. Primary outcome measure Fear of falling measured by change in FES-I scores at 12 months. Secondary outcome measures

  1. Increases in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and decreases the rostral prefrontal cortex activation after-8 weeks of focused attention based mindfulness meditation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomasino, Barbara; Fabbro, Franco

    2016-02-01

    Mindfulness meditation is a form of attention control training. The training exercises the ability to repeatedly focus attention. We addressed the activation changes related to an 8-weeks mindfulness-oriented focused attention meditation training on an initially naïve subject cohort. Before and after training participants underwent an fMRI experiment, thus, although not strictly a cross over design, they served as their internal own control. During fMRI they exercised focused attention on breathing and body scan as compared to resting. We found increased and decreased activation in different parts of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) by comparing pre- vs. post-mindfulness training (MT) during breathing and body scan meditation exercises that were compared against their own resting state. In the post-MT (vs. pre-MT) meditation increased activation in the right dorsolateral PFC and in the left caudate/anterior insula and decreased activation in the rostral PFC and right parietal area 3b. Thus a brief mindfulness training caused increased activation in areas involved in sustaining and monitoring the focus of attention (dorsolateral PFC), consistent with the aim of mindfulness that is exercising focused attention mechanisms, and in the left caudate/anterior insula involved in attention and corporeal awareness and decreased activation in areas part of the "default mode" network and is involved in mentalizing (rostral PFC), consistent with the ability trained by mindfulness of reducing spontaneous mind wandering. PMID:26720411

  2. Qualitative Analysis of Emotions: Fear and Thrill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckley, Ralf C

    2016-01-01

    People can speak, and this provides opportunities to analyze human emotions using perceived experiences communicated via language, as well as through measurement and imaging techniques that are also applicable to other higher animal species. Here I compare four qualitative methodological approaches to test if, and how, thrill depends on fear. I use eight high-risk, high-skill, real-life outdoor adventure recreation activities to provide the test circumstances. I present data from: >4000 person-days of participant observation; interviews with 40 expert practitioners; retrospective autoethnography of 50 critical incidents over 4 decades; and experimental autoethnography of 60 events. Results from different methods are congruent, but different approaches yield different insights. The principal findings are as follows. Individuals differ in their fear and thrill responses. The same individual may have different responses on different occasions. Fear boosts performance, but panic causes paralysis. Anxiety or apprehension prior to a risky action or event differs from fear experienced during the event itself. The intensity of pre-event fear generally increases with the immediacy of risk to life, and time to contemplate that risk. Fear must be faced, assessed and overcome in order to act. Thrill can occur either during or after a high-risk event. Thrill can occur without fear, and fear without thrill. Below a lower threshold of perceived risk, thrill can occur without fear. Between a lower and upper threshold, thrill increases with fear. Beyond the upper threshold, thrill vanishes but fear remains. This there is a sawtooth relation between fear and thrill. Perceived danger generates intense focus and awareness. Fear and other emotions can disappear during intense concentration and focus. Under high risk, the usual emotional sequence is fear before the action or event, then focus during the action or event, then thrill, relief, or triumph afterward. The emotionless state

  3. Joy, Distress, Hope, and Fear in Reinforcement Learning (Extended Abstract)

    OpenAIRE

    Jacobs, E. J.; Broekens, J.; Jonker, C.M.

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we present a mapping between joy, distress, hope and fear, and Reinforcement Learning primitives. Joy / distress is a signal that is derived from the RL update signal, while hope/fear is derived from the utility of the current state. Agent-based simulation experiments replicate psychological and behavioral dynamics of emotion including: joy and distress reactions that develop prior to hope and fear; fear extinction; habituation of joy; and, task randomness that increases the int...

  4. Fear in horses

    OpenAIRE

    Christensen, Janne Winther

    2006-01-01

    Fear is generally considered to be an undesirable emotional state that may reduce welfare, growth and reproductive performance in animals. Fear in horses is additionally problematic, because fear reactions can cause serious injury to both horse and human. Horses are primarily used for sports and leisure for a large number of children and young women. Unfortunately, horse riding ranks as one of the most dangerous sports in terms of the number and seriousness of accidents, and the ability of a ...

  5. Attachment Without Fear

    OpenAIRE

    Bell, David C.

    2009-01-01

    John Bowlby hypothesized an attachment system that interacts with caregiving, exploration, and fear systems in the brain, with a particular emphasis on fear. Neurobiological research confirms many of his hypotheses and also raises some new questions. A psychological model based on this neurobiological research is presented here. The model extends conventional attachment theory by describing additional attachment processes independent of fear. In this model, the attachment elements of trust, o...

  6. Anticipatory Attentional Suppression of Visual Features Indexed by Oscillatory Alpha-Band Power Increases: A High-Density Electrical Mapping Study

    OpenAIRE

    Snyder, Adam C.; John J Foxe

    2010-01-01

    Retinotopically specific increases in alpha-band (~10 Hz) oscillatory power have been strongly implicated in the suppression of processing for irrelevant parts of the visual field during the deployment of visuospatial attention. Here, we asked whether this alpha suppression mechanism also plays a role in the nonspatial anticipatory biasing of feature-based attention. Visual word cues informed subjects what the task-relevant feature of an upcoming visual stimulus (S2) was, while high-density e...

  7. Neuroticism modifies psychophysiological responses to fearful films.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuelle Reynaud

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Neuroticism is a personality component frequently found in anxious and depressive psychiatric disorders. The influence of neuroticism on negative emotions could be due to its action on stimuli related to fear and sadness, but this remains debated. Our goal was thus to better understand the impact of neuroticism through verbal and physiological assessment in response to stimuli inducing fear and sadness as compared to another negative emotion (disgust. METHODS: Fifteen low neurotic and 18 high neurotic subjects were assessed on an emotional attending task by using film excerpts inducing fear, disgust, and sadness. We recorded skin conductance response (SCR and corrugator muscle activity (frowning as indices of emotional expression. RESULTS: SCR was larger in high neurotic subjects than in low neurotics for fear relative to sadness and disgust. Moreover, corrugator activity and SCR were larger in high than in low neurotic subjects when fear was induced. CONCLUSION: After decades of evidence that individuals higher in neuroticism experience more intense emotional reactions to even minor stressors, our results indicate that they show greater SCR and expressive reactivity specifically to stimuli evoking fear rather than to those inducing sadness or disgust. Fear processing seems mainly under the influence of neuroticism. This modulation of autonomic activity by neurotics in response to threat/fear may explain their increased vulnerability to anxious psychopathologies such as PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder.

  8. Fear conditioning by proxy: social transmission of fear during memory retrieval

    OpenAIRE

    Bruchey, Aleksandra K.; Jones, Carolyn E.; Monfils, Marie-H.

    2010-01-01

    After fear conditioning (e.g., by pairing a tone to a shock), memory retrieval typically leads to fear expression (e.g., freezing to the tone). Here, we examined the effect of a conditioned rat's fear memory retrieval on a naïve cage-mate's behavior to the conditioned stimulus. We show that rats exposed to a novel tone in the presence of a cage-mate previously conditioned to that same tone selectively showed increased freezing to the stimulus the next day (fear conditioning by-proxy). In addi...

  9. Children with Comorbid Speech Sound Disorder and Specific Language Impairment Are at Increased Risk for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGrath, Lauren M.; Hutaff-Lee, Christa; Scott, Ashley; Boada, Richard; Shriberg, Lawrence D.; Pennington, Bruce F.

    2008-01-01

    This study focuses on the comorbidity between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms and speech sound disorder (SSD). SSD is a developmental disorder characterized by speech production errors that impact intelligibility. Previous research addressing this comorbidity has typically used heterogeneous groups of speech-language…

  10. A Randomized Trial of a Classroom Intervention to Increase Peers' Social Inclusion of Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikami, Amori Yee; Griggs, Marissa Swaim; Lerner, Matthew D.; Emeh, Christina C.; Reuland, Meg M.; Jack, Allison; Anthony, Maria R.

    2013-01-01

    Objective: Interventions for peer problems among children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) typically focus on improving these children's behaviors. This study tested the proposition that an adjunctive component encouraging the peer group to be socially inclusive of children with ADHD would augment the efficacy of traditional…

  11. Using Aromatherapy Massage to Increase Shared Attention Behaviours in Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorders and Severe Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solomons, Steve

    2005-01-01

    Children with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) characteristically display a lack of shared attention behaviours and the lack of these behaviours impacts on their ability to develop social interactions and relationships with others. Steve Solomons, assistant headteacher at Rectory Paddock School and Research Unit in the London Borough of Bromley,…

  12. Neuronal interactions in areas of spatial attention reflect avoidance of disgust, but orienting to danger.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmer, Ulrike; Höfler, Margit; Koschutnig, Karl; Ischebeck, Anja

    2016-07-01

    For survival, it is necessary to attend quickly towards dangerous objects, but to turn away from something that is disgusting. We tested whether fear and disgust sounds direct spatial attention differently. Using fMRI, a sound cue (disgust, fear or neutral) was presented to the left or right ear. The cue was followed by a visual target (a small arrow) which was located on the same (valid) or opposite (invalid) side as the cue. Participants were required to decide whether the arrow pointed up- or downwards while ignoring the sound cue. Behaviorally, responses were faster for invalid compared to valid targets when cued by disgust, whereas the opposite pattern was observed for targets after fearful and neutral sound cues. During target presentation, activity in the visual cortex and IPL increased for targets invalidly cued with disgust, but for targets validly cued with fear which indicated a general modulation of activation due to attention. For the TPJ, an interaction in the opposite direction was observed, consistent with its role in detecting targets at unattended positions and in relocating attention. As a whole our results indicate that a disgusting sound directs spatial attention away from its location, in contrast to fearful and neutral sounds. PMID:27039145

  13. Fear Extinction in Rodents

    OpenAIRE

    Chang, Chun-hui; Knapska, Ewelina; Orsini, Caitlin A.; Rabinak, Christine A.; Zimmerman, Joshua M; Maren, Stephen

    2009-01-01

    Pavlovian conditioning paradigms have become important model systems for understanding the neuroscience of behavior. In particular, studies of the extinction of Pavlovian fear responses are yielding important information about the neural substrates of anxiety disorders in humans. These studies are germane to understanding the neural mechanisms underlying behavioral interventions that suppress fear, including exposure therapy. This chapter described detailed behavioral protocols for examining ...

  14. Trait Self-Focused Attention Increases Sensitivity to Nonconscious Primes: Evidence from Effort-Related Cardiovascular Reactivity

    OpenAIRE

    Silvia, Paul J.; Kelly, Casey S.; Zibaie, Alireza; Nardello, Joseph L.; Moore, Lance C.

    2013-01-01

    A broad range of primes presented outside of awareness—ranging from emotional faces to people’s first names—can influence the physiological mobilization of effort during active coping tasks. Who responds more strongly to implicit cues? Based on models of self-awareness, the present research examined how individual differences in self-focused attention influence sensitivity to nonconscious primes. Adults completed a challenging cognitive task in which two kinds of primes were presented (people...

  15. Implicit theories of online trolling: Evidence that attention-seeking conceptions are associated with increased psychological resilience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maltby, John; Day, Liz; Hatcher, Ruth M; Tazzyman, Sarah; Flowe, Heather D; Palmer, Emma J; Frosch, Caren A; O'Reilly, Michelle; Jones, Ceri; Buckley, Chloe; Knieps, Melanie; Cutts, Katie

    2016-08-01

    Three studies were conducted to investigate people's conceptions of online trolls, particularly conceptions associated with psychological resilience to trolling. In Study 1, a factor analysis of participants' ratings of characteristics of online trolls found a replicable bifactor model of conceptions of online trolls, with a general factor of general conceptions towards online trolls being identified, but five group factors (attention-conflict seeking, low self-confidence, viciousness, uneducated, amusement) as most salient. In Study 2, participants evaluated hypothetical profiles of online trolling messages to establish the validity of the five factors. Three constructs (attention-conflict seeking, viciousness, and uneducated) were actively employed when people considered profiles of online trolling scenarios. Study 3 introduced a 20-item 'Conceptions of Online Trolls scale' to examine the extent to which the five group factors were associated with resilience to trolling. Results indicated that viewing online trolls as seeking conflict or attention was associated with a decrease in individuals' negative affect around previous trolling incidents. Overall, the findings suggest that adopting an implicit theories approach can further our understanding and measurement of conceptions towards trolling through the identification of five salient factors, of which at least one factor may act as a resilience strategy. PMID:26403842

  16. Nicotine increases impulsivity and decreases willingness to exert cognitive effort despite improving attention in "slacker" rats: insights into cholinergic regulation of cost/benefit decision making.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jay G Hosking

    Full Text Available Successful decision making in our daily lives requires weighing an option's costs against its associated benefits. The neuromodulator acetylcholine underlies both the etiology and treatment of a number of illnesses in which decision making is perturbed, including Alzheimer's disease, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and schizophrenia. Nicotine acts on the cholinergic system and has been touted as a cognitive enhancer by both smokers and some researchers for its attention-boosting effects; however, it is unclear whether treatments that have a beneficial effect on attention would also have a beneficial effect on decision making. Here we utilize the rodent Cognitive Effort Task (rCET, wherein animals can choose to allocate greater visuospatial attention for a greater reward, to examine cholinergic contributions to both attentional performance and choice based on attentional demand. Following the establishment of baseline behavior, four drug challenges were administered: nicotine, mecamylamine, scopolamine, and oxotremorine (saline plus three doses for each. As per previous rCET studies, animals were divided by their baseline preferences, with "worker" rats choosing high-effort/high-reward options more than their "slacker" counterparts. Nicotine caused slackers to choose even fewer high-effort trials than at baseline, but had no effect on workers' choice. Despite slackers' decreased willingness to expend effort, nicotine improved their attentional performance on the task. Nicotine also increased measures of motor impulsivity in all animals. In contrast, scopolamine decreased animals' choice of high-effort trials, especially for workers, while oxotremorine decreased motor impulsivity for all animals. In sum, the cholinergic system appears to contribute to decision making, and in part these contributions can be understood as a function of individual differences. While nicotine has been considered as a cognitive enhancer, these data suggest

  17. An experimental demonstration that fear, but not disgust, is associated with return of fear in phobias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Sarah; Salkovskis, Paul M

    2006-01-01

    It has been suggested that disgust, rather than anxiety, may be important in some phobias. Correlational studies have been ambiguous, indicating either that disgust increases phobic anxiety or that phobic anxiety potentiates disgust. In the experimental study reported here, disgust and phobic anxiety were manipulated in the context of habituation to phobic stimuli. Spider fearful participants were randomly allocated to conditions in which neutral, disgusting, and phobic anxiety provoking stimuli were introduced into a video-based spider phobic habituation sequence. Exposure to the phobic stimulus resulted in a return of self-reported fear and disgust levels. However, exposure to disgusting stimulus increased disgust levels, but not anxiety levels. Results are most consistent with the hypothesis that fear enhances the disgust response in phobias, but that disgust alone does not enhance the fear response. Previously observed links between disgust and spider phobia may be a consequence of fear enhancing disgust. PMID:16325114

  18. Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis, Fear Generalization, and Stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besnard, Antoine; Sahay, Amar

    2016-01-01

    The generalization of fear is an adaptive, behavioral, and physiological response to the likelihood of threat in the environment. In contrast, the overgeneralization of fear, a cardinal feature of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), manifests as inappropriate, uncontrollable expression of fear in neutral and safe environments. Overgeneralization of fear stems from impaired discrimination of safe from aversive environments or discernment of unlikely threats from those that are highly probable. In addition, the time-dependent erosion of episodic details of traumatic memories might contribute to their generalization. Understanding the neural mechanisms underlying the overgeneralization of fear will guide development of novel therapeutic strategies to combat PTSD. Here, we conceptualize generalization of fear in terms of resolution of interference between similar memories. We propose a role for a fundamental encoding mechanism, pattern separation, in the dentate gyrus (DG)-CA3 circuit in resolving interference between ambiguous or uncertain threats and in preserving episodic content of remote aversive memories in hippocampal-cortical networks. We invoke cellular-, circuit-, and systems-based mechanisms by which adult-born dentate granule cells (DGCs) modulate pattern separation to influence resolution of interference and maintain precision of remote aversive memories. We discuss evidence for how these mechanisms are affected by stress, a risk factor for PTSD, to increase memory interference and decrease precision. Using this scaffold we ideate strategies to curb overgeneralization of fear in PTSD. PMID:26068726

  19. THE FEAR OF FEAR CONCEPT - EVIDENCE IN FAVOR OF MULTIDIMENSIONALITY

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    ARRINDELL, WA

    1993-01-01

    In recent years, questions have been raised regarding the dimensionality of existing measures of fear of fear. This is an important issue that needs to be addressed if the dimensions(s) of any scale purporting to assess fear of fear are to guide theory and research. One of the most widely used measu

  20. The Biology of Fear

    OpenAIRE

    Adolphs, Ralph

    2013-01-01

    Each of us has felt afraid, and we can all recognize fear in many animal species. Yet there is no consensus in the scientific study of fear. Some argue that “fear” is a psychological construct rather than discoverable through scientific investigation. Others argue that the term “fear” cannot properly be applied to animals because we cannot know whether they feel afraid. Studies in rodents show that there are highly specific brain circuits for fear, whereas findings from human neuroimaging see...

  1. Increased Sleep Disturbances in Thai Children With Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Compared With Typically Developing Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiraphadhanakul, Kobrat; Jaimchariyatam, Nattapong; Pruksananonda, Chandhita; Chonchaiya, Weerasak

    2016-01-01

    This study compares sleep disturbances in Thai children aged 5-12 years with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and typically developing children using the Children's Sleep Habits Questionnaire (CSHQ)-Thai version. Fifty-five children with ADHD and 110 typically developing children were enrolled. Their parents completed the CSHQ, the ADHD rating scales, and the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). Children with ADHD had significantly higher scores in all subscales of the CSHQ compared to controls. Among children with ADHD, children with higher SDQ scores (> 15) appeared to have more sleep disturbances than those with relatively lower SDQ scores. Moreover, fewer sleep-related behavioral problems were observed in the medication treated group, which is particularly new to the field and for some perhaps not unexpected clinically. PMID:26629892

  2. Increased prefrontal oxygenation related to distractor-resistant working memory in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsujimoto, Satoshi; Yasumura, Akira; Yamashita, Yushiro; Torii, Miyuki; Kaga, Makiko; Inagaki, Masumi

    2013-10-01

    This study aimed at investigating the effect of distraction on working memory and its underlying neural mechanisms in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). To this end, we studied hemodynamic activity in the prefrontal cortex using near-infrared spectroscopy while 16 children with ADHD and 10 typically developing (TD) children performed a working memory task. This task had two conditions: one involved a distraction during the memory delay interval, whereas the other had no systematic distraction. The ADHD patients showed significantly poorer behavioral performance compared with the TD group, particularly under the distraction. The ADHD group exhibited significantly higher level of prefrontal activation than did TD children. The activity level was positively correlated with the severity of ADHD symptoms. These results suggest that the impairment in the inhibition of distraction is responsible for the working memory deficits observed in ADHD children. Inefficient processing in the prefrontal cortex appears to underlie such deficits. PMID:23385518

  3. Visually depicting cancer fears: Beyond biomedical concerns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolyn Brooks

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This manuscript is a reaction to the high prevalence of breast cancer amongst Aboriginal women. Our work calls for more attention to the effects of race, gender, and class on cancer fears and related experiences. The shock of a cancer diagnosis and fears of recurrence can leave patients feeling that their lives are out of control. Combining the visual method of photovoice with focus groups and in-depth interviews, we develop an understanding of cancer experiences that includes fears related to: socio-economic realities; supporting families both emotionally and financially; environmental concerns, especially those that arise from living on reserve; race and racism; and cultural beliefs. Breast cancer experiences are shown to be significantly linked to history and the impact of colonization, neo-colonialism and point to the importance of a postcolonial feminist framework and cancer support policies informed by a lens of cultural safety.

  4. Stressor controllability modulates fear extinction in humans

    OpenAIRE

    Hartley, Catherine A.; Gorun, Alyson; Reddan, Marianne C.; Ramirez, Franchesca; Phelps, Elizabeth A.

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic events are proposed to play a role in the development of anxiety disorders, however not all individuals exposed to extreme stress experience a pathological increase in fear. Recent studies in animal models suggest that the degree to which one is able to control an aversive experience is a critical factor determining its behavioral consequences. In this study, we examined whether stressor controllability modulates subsequent conditioned fear expression in humans. Participants were ra...

  5. The role of the medial prefrontal cortex in trace fear extinction

    OpenAIRE

    Kwapis, Janine L.; Jarome, Timothy J.; Fred J Helmstetter

    2015-01-01

    The extinction of delay fear conditioning relies on a neural circuit that has received much attention and is relatively well defined. Whether this established circuit also supports the extinction of more complex associations, however, is unclear. Trace fear conditioning is a better model of complex relational learning, yet the circuit that supports extinction of this memory has received very little attention. Recent research has indicated that trace fear extinction requires a different neural...

  6. Fear: The Teachers' Teacher.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agne, Karen

    1996-01-01

    Looks at the effects of fear in the classroom and offers suggestions for teachers in dealing with the issue: self-acceptance, other-orientation, trust, patience, self-awareness, and journal writing. (JOW)

  7. The Fears of Adolescents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamber, James H.

    1974-01-01

    This study investigated the self-reported fears and some personality characteristics of a sample of 1112 adolescents ranging in age from 12 to 18 years (attending grammar and secondary schools in Northern Ireland). (CS)

  8. Attention to Attention

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tække, Jesper; Paulsen, Michael Eric

    a psychic prerequisite for the social interaction between pupils and teachers. New kinds of “split attention” arise and new kinds of social mediation (regulation and “use”) of psychic attention become necessary if teaching in the new digital medium milieu shall be beneficial. In this paper we...... against Facebook, online games etc. neither unconcern and ignorance of the new media and their consequences for attention) - we argue - can generate adequate social norms regulating psychic awareness in the new digital learning environment....

  9. Fear Extinction Memory Consolidation Requires Potentiation of Pontine-Wave Activity during REM Sleep

    OpenAIRE

    Datta, Subimal; O'Malley, Matthew W .

    2013-01-01

    Sleep plays an important role in memory consolidation within multiple memory systems including contextual fear extinction memory, but little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this process. Here, we show that fear extinction training in rats, which extinguished conditioned fear, increased both slow-wave sleep and rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep. Surprisingly, 24 h later, during memory testing, only 57% of the fear-extinguished animals retained fear extinction memory. We found that the...

  10. Intergenerational transmission of emotional trauma through amygdala-dependent mother-to-infant transfer of specific fear

    OpenAIRE

    Debiec, Jacek; Sullivan, Regina Marie

    2014-01-01

    Despite clinical evidence that specific fear is transmitted across generations, we have little understanding of mechanisms. Here, we model social transmission of mother-to-infant fear in rodents. We show that maternal fear responses to a conditioned fear odor are sufficient to induce robust fear learning throughout infancy, with robust retention. Assessment of mechanism showed that maternal fear expression increases pups’ stress hormone corticosterone and amygdala activation to induce this cu...

  11. Mild to severe social fears: ranking types of feared social situations using item response theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crome, Erica; Baillie, Andrew

    2014-06-01

    Social anxiety disorder is one of the most common mental disorders, and is associated with long term impairment, distress and vulnerability to secondary disorders. Certain types of social fears are more common than others, with public speaking fears typically the most prevalent in epidemiological surveys. The distinction between performance- and interaction-based fears has been the focus of long-standing debate in the literature, with evidence performance-based fears may reflect more mild presentations of social anxiety. This study aims to explicitly test whether different types of social fears differ in underlying social anxiety severity using item response theory techniques. Different types of social fears were assessed using items from three different structured diagnostic interviews in four different epidemiological surveys in the United States (n=2261, n=5411) and Australia (n=1845, n=1497); and ranked using 2-parameter logistic item response theory models. Overall, patterns of underlying severity indicated by different fears were consistent across the four samples with items functioning across a range of social anxiety. Public performance fears and speaking at meetings/classes indicated the lowest levels of social anxiety, with increasing severity indicated by situations such as being assertive or attending parties. Fears of using public bathrooms or eating, drinking or writing in public reflected the highest levels of social anxiety. Understanding differences in the underlying severity of different types of social fears has important implications for the underlying structure of social anxiety, and may also enhance the delivery of social anxiety treatment at a population level. PMID:24873885

  12. Methylphenidate-Elicited Dopamine Increases in Ventral Striatum Are Associated with Long-Term Symptom Improvement in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Volkow, Nora D.; Wang, Gene-Jack; Tomasi, Dardo; Kollins, Scott H.; Wigal, Tim L.; Newcorn, Jeffrey H.; Telang, Frank W.; Fowler, Joanna S.; Logan, Jean; Wong, Christopher T.; Swanson, James M.

    2012-01-01

    Stimulant medications, such as methylphenidate, which are effective treatments for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), enhance brain dopamine signaling. However, the relationship between regional brain dopamine enhancement and treatment response has not been evaluated. Here, we assessed whether the dopamine increases elicited by methylphenidate are associated with long-term clinical response. We used a prospective design to study 20 treatment-naive adults with ADHD who were evalu...

  13. Are impairments in visual-spatial attention a critical factor for increased falls risk in seniors? An event-related potential study

    OpenAIRE

    Nagamatsu, Lindsay S.; Liu-Ambrose, Teresa Y L; Carolan, Patrick; Handy, Todd C

    2009-01-01

    Falls are experienced annually by approximately one third of community dwellers over the age of 65, and while neuro-cognitive deficits have been shown to increase falls risk, the specific nature of these deficits remain unspecified. Here we examined whether visual-spatial attention may be a core neuro-cognitive system showing abnormal function in fallers. Using a between-groups design, we recorded event-related potentials in a canonical spatial cuing task performed by two groups of senior (ag...

  14. Your attention please: increasing ambient noise levels elicits a change in communication behaviour in humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae)

    OpenAIRE

    Dunlop, Rebecca A.; Cato, Douglas H.; Noad, Michael J.

    2010-01-01

    High background noise is an important obstacle in successful signal detection and perception of an intended acoustic signal. To overcome this problem, many animals modify their acoustic signal by increasing the repetition rate, duration, amplitude or frequency range of the signal. An alternative method to ensure successful signal reception, yet to be tested in animals, involves the use of two different types of signal, where one signal type may enhance the other in periods of high background ...

  15. Fear of pain potentiates nocebo hyperalgesia

    OpenAIRE

    Aslaksen PM; Lyby PS

    2015-01-01

    Per M Aslaksen,1 Peter S Lyby2 1Department of Psychology, Research Group for Cognitive Neuroscience, The Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Tromsø, The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø, Norway; 2Catosenteret Rehabilitation Center, Son, Norway Abstract: Nocebo hyperalgesia has received sparse experimental attention compared to placebo analgesia. The aim of the present study was to investigate if personality traits and fear of pain could predict experimental nocebo hype...

  16. Fear of pain potentiates nocebo hyperalgesia

    OpenAIRE

    Aslaksen, Per

    2015-01-01

    Per M Aslaksen,1 Peter S Lyby2 1Department of Psychology, Research Group for Cognitive Neuroscience, The Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Tromsø, The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø, Norway; 2Catosenteret Rehabilitation Center, Son, Norway Abstract: Nocebo hyperalgesia has received sparse experimental attention compared to placebo analgesia. The aim of the present study was to investigate if personality traits and fear of pain could predict experimental noc...

  17. Your attention please: increasing ambient noise levels elicits a change in communication behaviour in humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlop, Rebecca A; Cato, Douglas H; Noad, Michael J

    2010-08-22

    High background noise is an important obstacle in successful signal detection and perception of an intended acoustic signal. To overcome this problem, many animals modify their acoustic signal by increasing the repetition rate, duration, amplitude or frequency range of the signal. An alternative method to ensure successful signal reception, yet to be tested in animals, involves the use of two different types of signal, where one signal type may enhance the other in periods of high background noise. Humpback whale communication signals comprise two different types: vocal signals, and surface-generated signals such as 'breaching' or 'pectoral slapping'. We found that humpback whales gradually switched from primarily vocal to primarily surface-generated communication in increasing wind speeds and background noise levels, though kept both signal types in their repertoire. Vocal signals have the advantage of having higher information content but may have the disadvantage of loosing this information in a noisy environment. Surface-generated sounds have energy distributed over a greater frequency range and may be less likely to become confused in periods of high wind-generated noise but have less information content when compared with vocal sounds. Therefore, surface-generated sounds may improve detection or enhance the perception of vocal signals in a noisy environment. PMID:20392731

  18. Emetophobia: A fear of vomiting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faye, Abhijeet D; Gawande, Sushil; Tadke, Rahul; Kirpekar, Vivek C; Bhave, Sudhir H

    2013-10-01

    Emetophobia is an intense, irrational fear of vomiting including fear of feeling nausea, seeing or hearing another person vomit, or seeing vomitus itself. It may occur at any age and we need to understand its symptomatology. We report a case of emetophobic child whose fear of vomiting started after an attack of acute appendicitis. In the initial stage, fear was limited to vomiting, later it became generalized to a fear of seeing the vomitus, worries that parents may suffer vomiting, fear of vomiting in public places followed by avoiding social activities. Patient improved on short course of anti-anxiety drugs and Graded Exposure Therapy. PMID:24459314

  19. Fearing religious satire

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brink, Dennis Meyhoff

    The article examines the history of the fear of religious satire in modern Europe. The article argues that this fear primarily concerns the potential dissolution of 'the social bond of society' or 'the moral and social order'. From the 17th Century until today, censorship measures and blasphemy...... legislations are Thus primarily founded on arguments concerning moral, social or public order. The article furthermore argues that although anti-censorship satire gradually weakened the legitimacy of censorship, the notion of religion as 'the social bond of society' is still operative in contemporary blasphemy...

  20. Standardised (plain) cigarette packaging increases attention to both text-based and graphical health warnings: experimental evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shankleman, M.; Sykes, C.; Mandeville, K.L.; Di Costa, S.; Yarrow, K.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To investigate whether standardised cigarette packaging increases the time spent looking at health warnings, regardless of the format of those warnings. Study design A factorial (two pack styles x three warning types) within-subject experiment, with participants randomised to different orders of conditions, completed at a university in London, UK. Methods Mock-ups of cigarette packets were presented to participants with their branded portion in either standardised (plain) or manufacturer-designed (branded) format. Health warnings were present on all packets, representing all three types currently in use in the UK: black & white text, colour text, or colour images with accompanying text. Gaze position was recorded using a specialised eye tracker, providing the main outcome measure, which was the mean proportion of a five-second viewing period spent gazing at the warning-label region of the packet. Results An opportunity sample of 30 (six male, mean age = 23) young adults met the following inclusion criteria: 1) not currently a smoker; 2) cigarettes smoked; 3) gaze position successfully tracked for > 50% viewing time. These participants spent a greater proportion of the available time gazing at the warning-label region when the branded section of the pack was standardised (following current Australian guidelines) rather than containing the manufacturer's preferred design (mean difference in proportions = 0.078, 95% confidence interval 0.049 to 0.106, p cigarette packets, young adult never-smokers are likely to spend more time looking at health warnings if manufacturers are compelled to use standardised packaging, regardless of the warning design. PMID:25542740

  1. Dorky Poll Scientific Fears

    CERN Multimedia

    2008-01-01

    The questions posed in yesterday's posts about hopes for 2008 were half of what we were asked by the Powers That Be. The other half: What scientific development do you fear you'll be blogging or reading about in 2008?

  2. Fear of the Formal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    du Gay, Paul; Lopdrup-Hjorth, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    term this ‘fear of the formal’, outlining key elements of its genealogy and exploring its contemporary manifestation in relation to recent and ongoing reforms of organisational life in a range of contexts. At the same time, we seek to indicate the continuing constitutive significance of formality...

  3. Animal Models of Fear Relapse

    OpenAIRE

    Goode, Travis D.; Maren, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Whereas fear memories are rapidly acquired and enduring over time, extinction memories are slow to form and are susceptible to disruption. Consequently, behavioral therapies that involve extinction learning (e.g., exposure therapy) often produce only temporary suppression of fear and anxiety. This review focuses on the factors that are known to influence the relapse of extinguished fear. Several phenomena associated with the return of fear after extinction are discussed, including renewal, sp...

  4. Examining the Direct and Indirect Effects of Fear and Anger on Criminal Decision Making Among Known Offenders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouffard, Jeff A

    2015-12-01

    Deterrence represents the central theoretical core of the American criminal justice system, yet relatively little attention has been paid to how emotions like fear and anger may relate to deterrence. Psychological research has debated whether negative emotions each have similar impacts on decision making (valence approaches) or if distinct emotions have unique impacts (appraisal tendency approaches). This study explores the direct and indirect influences of fear and anger on hypothetical drunk driving likelihood, including their impact on cost perceptions. Surveys were administered to 1,013 male and female incarcerated felony offenders in the Southwestern United States. Using a multivariate path model and controlling for a number of other individual factors, current fear related to increased cost perceptions and anger to decreased costs. Anger also maintained a direct influence on drunk driving, whereas fear did not. Despite their shared negative valence, fear and anger appear to have dissimilar influences on cost perceptions and criminal decision making. A better understanding of these processes may lead to improved crime prevention approaches. PMID:24927741

  5. Deficient fear conditioning in psychopathy as a function of interpersonal and affective disturbances

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ralf eVeit

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The diminished fear reactivity is one of the most valid physiological findings in psychopathy research. In a fear conditioning paradigm, with faces as conditioned stimulus (CS and electric shock as unconditioned stimulus (US, we investigated a sample of 14 high psychopathic violent offenders. Event related potentials, skin conductance responses (SCR as well as subjective ratings of the CSs were collected. This study assessed to which extent the different facets of the psychopathy construct contribute to the fear conditioning deficits observed in psychopaths. Participants with high scores on the affective facet subscale of the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R showed weaker conditioned fear responses and lower N100 amplitudes compared to low scorers. In contrast, high scorers on the affective facet rated the CS+ (paired more negatively than low scorers regarding the CS- (unpaired. Regarding the P300, high scores on the interpersonal facet were associated with increased amplitudes to the CS+ compared to the CS-, while the opposed pattern was found with the antisocial facet. Both, the initial and terminal contingent negative variation indicated a divergent pattern: participants with pronounced interpersonal deficits, showed increased cortical negativity to the CS+ compared to the CS-, whereas a reversed CS+/CS- differentiation was found in offenders scoring high on the antisocial facet. The present study revealed that deficient fear conditioning in psychopathy was most pronounced in offenders with high scores on the affective facet. Event related potentials suggest that participants with distinct interpersonal deficits showed increased information processing, whereas the antisocial facet was linked to decreased attention and interest to the CS+. These data indicate that an approach to the facets of psychopathy can help to resolve ambiguous findings in psychopathy research and enables a more precise and useful description of this disorder.

  6. Understanding amygdala responsiveness to fearful expressions through the lens of psychopathy and altruism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Abigail A

    2016-06-01

    Because the face is the central focus of human social interactions, emotional facial expressions provide a unique window into the emotional lives of others. They play a particularly important role in fostering empathy, which entails understanding and responding to others' emotions, especially distress-related emotions such as fear. This Review considers how fearful facial as well as vocal and postural expressions are interpreted, with an emphasis on the role of the amygdala. The amygdala may be best known for its role in the acquisition and expression of conditioned fear, but it also supports the perception and recognition of others' fear. Various explanations have been supplied for the amygdala's role in interpreting and responding to fearful expressions. They include theories that amygdala responses to fearful expressions 1) reflect heightened vigilance in response to uncertain danger, 2) promote heightened attention to the eye region of faces, 3) represent a response to an unconditioned aversive stimulus, or 4) reflect the generation of an empathic fear response. Among these, only empathic fear explains why amygdala lesions would impair fear recognition across modalities. Supporting the possibility of a link between fundamental empathic processes and amygdala responses to fear is evidence that impaired fear recognition in psychopathic individuals results from amygdala dysfunction, whereas enhanced fear recognition in altruistic individuals results from enhanced amygdala function. Empathic concern and caring behaviors may be fostered by sensitivity to signs of acute distress in others, which relies on intact functioning of the amygdala. PMID:26366635

  7. Stress-related increases in risk taking and attentional failures predict earlier relapse to smoking in young adults: A pilot investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schepis, Ty S; Tapscott, Brian E; Krishnan-Sarin, Suchitra

    2016-04-01

    Substantial evidence links greater impulsivity and stress exposure to poorer smoking cessation outcomes. Results from adolescents also indicate that stress-related change in risk taking can impede cessation attempts. We investigated the effects of stress-related change in impulsivity, risk taking, attention and nicotine withdrawal, and craving in young adult smokers on time to smoking relapse in a relapse analogue paradigm. Twenty-six young adult smokers (50% women; mean age: 20.9 ± 1.8) were exposed to a stress imagery session followed by a contingency management-based relapse analogue paradigm. Participants smoked at least 5 cigarettes daily, with a mean baseline carbon monoxide (CO) level of 13.7 (±5.1) ppm. Repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) and paired t tests examined stress induction validity and Cox regressions of proportional hazards examined the effects of stress-related changes in nicotine withdrawal, nicotine craving, attention, impulsivity, and risk taking on time to relapse. While stress-related change in impulsivity, nicotine craving and withdrawal did not predict time to relapse (all ps > .10), greater stress-related increases in reaction time (RT) variability (p = .02) were predictive of shorter time to relapse, with trend-level findings for inattention and risk taking. Furthermore, changes in stress-related risk taking affected outcome in women more than in men, with a significant relationship between stress-related change in risk taking only in women (p = .026). Smoking cessation attempts in young adults may be adversely impacted by stress-related increases in risk taking and attentional disruption. Clinicians working with young adults attempting cessation may need to target these stress-related impairments by fostering more adaptive coping and resilience. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26901590

  8. Sex differences in fear extinction and involvements of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuda, Shingo; Matsuzawa, Daisuke; Ishii, Daisuke; Tomizawa, Haruna; Sutoh, Chihiro; Shimizu, Eiji

    2015-09-01

    Stress-related disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and panic disorders, are disproportionately prevalent in females. However, the biological mechanism underlying these sex differences in the prevalence rate remains unclear. In the present study, we examined sex differences in fear memory, fear extinction, and spontaneous recovery of fear. We investigated the presence of sex differences in recent and remote fear memory in mice using contextual fear conditioning, as well as sex differences in spontaneous recovery of fear memory using a consecutive fear extinction paradigm. We examined the number of fear extinction days required to prevent spontaneous recovery of fear in either sex. We investigated whether ovariectomy affected fear extinction and spontaneous recovery. We also measured the activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) 1 and 2 in the dorsal hippocampus and the medial prefrontal cortex following fear extinction sessions. In our results, we found no sex difference in recent or remote fear memory. However, females required more fear extinction sessions compared to males to prevent spontaneous recovery. Within-extinction freezing also differed between males and females. Moreover, females required more extinction sessions than males to increase ERK2 phosphorylation in the dorsal hippocampus. Our data suggest that contextual fear extinction was unstable in females compared to males and that such sex differences may be related to the ERK2 phosphorylation in the hippocampus. PMID:26079214

  9. Hidden sources of joy, fear, and sadness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bogert, Brigitte; Numminen-Kontti, Taru; Gold, Benjamin;

    2016-01-01

    to be associated with the cognitive processing of music and emotion recognition and regulation. Moreover, happiness in music was associated with activity in the bilateral auditory cortex, left parahippocampal gyrus, and supplementary motor area, whereas the negative emotions of sadness and fear corresponded......Music is often used to regulate emotions and mood. Typically, music conveys and induces emotions even when one does not attend to them. Studies on the neural substrates of musical emotions have, however, only examined brain activity when subjects have focused on the emotional content of the music....... Here we address with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) the neural processing of happy, sad, and fearful music with a paradigm in which 56 subjects were instructed to either classify the emotions (explicit condition) or pay attention to the number of instruments playing (implicit condition...

  10. Fear of holes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, Geoff G; Wilkins, Arnold J

    2013-10-01

    Phobias are usually described as irrational and persistent fears of certain objects or situations, and causes of such fears are difficult to identify. We describe an unusual but common phobia (trypophobia), hitherto unreported in the scientific literature, in which sufferers are averse to images of holes. We performed a spectral analysis on a variety of images that induce trypophobia and found that the stimuli had a spectral composition typically associated with uncomfortable visual images, namely, high-contrast energy at midrange spatial frequencies. Critically, we found that a range of potentially dangerous animals also possess this spectral characteristic. We argue that although sufferers are not conscious of the association, the phobia arises in part because the inducing stimuli share basic visual characteristics with dangerous organisms, characteristics that are low level and easily computed, and therefore facilitate a rapid nonconscious response. PMID:23982244

  11. Serotonin, Amygdala and Fear: Assembling the Puzzle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocchio, Marco; McHugh, Stephen B.; Bannerman, David M.; Sharp, Trevor; Capogna, Marco

    2016-01-01

    The fear circuitry orchestrates defense mechanisms in response to environmental threats. This circuitry is evolutionarily crucial for survival, but its dysregulation is thought to play a major role in the pathophysiology of psychiatric conditions in humans. The amygdala is a key player in the processing of fear. This brain area is prominently modulated by the neurotransmitter serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT). The 5-HT input to the amygdala has drawn particular interest because genetic and pharmacological alterations of the 5-HT transporter (5-HTT) affect amygdala activation in response to emotional stimuli. Nonetheless, the impact of 5-HT on fear processing remains poorly understood.The aim of this review is to elucidate the physiological role of 5-HT in fear learning via its action on the neuronal circuits of the amygdala. Since 5-HT release increases in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) during both fear memory acquisition and expression, we examine whether and how 5-HT neurons encode aversive stimuli and aversive cues. Next, we describe pharmacological and genetic alterations of 5-HT neurotransmission that, in both rodents and humans, lead to altered fear learning. To explore the mechanisms through which 5-HT could modulate conditioned fear, we focus on the rodent BLA. We propose that a circuit-based approach taking into account the localization of specific 5-HT receptors on neurochemically-defined neurons in the BLA may be essential to decipher the role of 5-HT in emotional behavior. In keeping with a 5-HT control of fear learning, we review electrophysiological data suggesting that 5-HT regulates synaptic plasticity, spike synchrony and theta oscillations in the BLA via actions on different subcellular compartments of principal neurons and distinct GABAergic interneuron populations. Finally, we discuss how recently developed optogenetic tools combined with electrophysiological recordings and behavior could progress the knowledge of the mechanisms underlying 5

  12. Who fears and who welcomes population decline?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hendrik P. Van Dalen

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available European countries are experiencing population decline and the tacit assumption in most analyses is that the decline may have detrimental welfare effects. In this paper we use a survey among the population in the Netherlands to discover whether population decline is always met with fear. A number of results stand out: population size preferences differ by geographic proximity: at a global level the majority of respondents favors a (global population decline, but closer to home one supports a stationary population. Population decline is clearly not always met with fear: 31 percent would like the population to decline at the national level and they generally perceive decline to be accompanied by immaterial welfare gains (improvement environment as well as material welfare losses (tax increases, economic stagnation. In addition to these driving forces it appears that the attitude towards immigrants is a very strong determinant at all geographical levels: immigrants seem to be a stronger fear factor than population decline.

  13. Wage bargaining, job loss fears and offshoring

    OpenAIRE

    Riedl, Maximilian

    2013-01-01

    In this paper I present a simple theoretical model where firms and trade unions negotiate over wages. Firms have the possibility to offshore parts of the ir production and trade union members have a disutility from individual job loss fears. I show that higher job loss fears result in lower wages. As a Nash bargaining result, firms can use potential but non realized offshoring as a threat to enforce lower wages. Using a large German household survey, I can show evidence that increasing potent...

  14. Fear-potentiation in the elevated plus-maze test depends on stressor controllability and fear conditioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Korte, S M; Bohus, B; de Boer, Sietse

    1999-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to determine which stressor qualities (escapable vs. inescapable stress and unconditioned vs. conditioned stress) can potentiate fear in the elevated plus-maze. While inescapable stress potentiated fear, escapable stress did not, but escapable stress increased the locomo

  15. Controllable versus uncontrollable stressors bi-directionally modulate conditioned but not innate fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baratta, M V; Christianson, J P; Gomez, D M; Zarza, C M; Amat, J; Masini, C V; Watkins, L R; Maier, S F

    2007-06-01

    Fear conditioning and fear extinction play key roles in the development and treatment of anxiety-related disorders, yet there is little information concerning experiential variables that modulate these processes. Here we examined the impact of exposure to a stressor in a different environment on subsequent fear conditioning and extinction, and whether the degree of behavioral control that the subject has over the stressor is of importance. Rats received a session of either escapable (controllable) tail shock (ES), yoked inescapable (uncontrollable) tail shock (IS), or control treatment (home cage, HC) 7 days before fear conditioning in which a tone and foot shock were paired. Conditioning was measured 24 h later. In a second experiment rats received ES, IS or HC 24 h after contextual fear conditioning. Extinction then occurred every day beginning 7 days later until a criterion was reached. Spontaneous recovery of fear was assessed 14 days after extinction. IS potentiated fear conditioning when given before fear conditioning, and potentiated fear responding during extinction when given after conditioning. Importantly, ES potently interfered with later fear conditioning, decreased fear responding during fear extinction, and prevented spontaneous recovery of fear. Additionally, we examined if the activation of the ventral medial prefrontal cortex (mPFCv) by ES is critical for the protective effects of ES on later fear conditioning. Inactivation of the mPFCv with muscimol at the time of the initial experience with control prevented ES-induced reductions in later contextual and auditory fear conditioning. Finally, we explored if the protective effects of ES extended to an unconditioned fear stimulus, ferret odor. Unlike conditioned fear, prior ES increased the fear response to ferret odor to the same degree as did IS. PMID:17478046

  16. Cognitive vulnerability and dental fear

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spencer A John

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Cognitive Vulnerability Model proposes that perceptions of certain characteristics of a situation are critical determinants of fear. Although the model is applicable to all animal, natural environment and situational fears, it has not yet been applied specifically to dental fear. This study therefore aimed to examine the association between dental fear and perceptions of dental visits as uncontrollable, unpredictable and dangerous. Methods The study used a clustered, stratified national sample of Australians aged 15 years and over. All participants were asked in a telephone interview survey to indicate their level of dental fear. Participants who received an oral examination were subsequently provided with a self-complete questionnaire in which they rated their perceptions of uncontrollability, unpredictability and dangerousness associated with dental visiting. Results 3937 participants were recruited. Each of the three vulnerability-related perceptions was strongly associated with the prevalence of high dental fear. In a logistic regression analysis, uncontrollability and dangerousness perceptions were significantly associated with high dental fear after controlling for age and sex. However, unpredictability perceptions did not have a statistically significant independent association with dental fear after controlling for all other variables. Conclusion Results are mostly consistent with the Cognitive Vulnerability Model of the etiology of fear, with perceptions of uncontrollability, unpredictability and dangerousness each showing a strong bivariate relationship with high dental fear prevalence. However, more extensive measures of vulnerability perceptions would be valuable in future investigations.

  17. Antagonism of Lateral Amygdala Alpha1-Adrenergic Receptors Facilitates Fear Conditioning and Long-Term Potentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazzaro, Stephanie C.; Hou, Mian; Cunha, Catarina; LeDoux, Joseph E.; Cain, Christopher K.

    2010-01-01

    Norepinephrine receptors have been studied in emotion, memory, and attention. However, the role of alpha1-adrenergic receptors in fear conditioning, a major model of emotional learning, is poorly understood. We examined the effect of terazosin, an alpha1-adrenergic receptor antagonist, on cued fear conditioning. Systemic or intra-lateral amygdala…

  18. Fear of Failure and Student Athletes' Interpersonal Antisocial Behaviour in Education and Sport

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sagar, Sam S.; Boardley, Ian D.; Kavussanu, Maria

    2011-01-01

    Background: The link between fear of failure and students' antisocial behaviour has received scant research attention despite associations between fear of failure, hostility, and aggression. Also, the effect of sport experience on antisocial behaviour has not been considered outside of the sport context in adult populations. Further, to date, sex…

  19. Enhanced sensitization to animal, interpersonal, and intergroup fear-relevant stimuli (but no evidence for selective one-trial fear learning).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipp, Ottmar V; Cronin, Sophie L; Alhadad, Sakinah S J; Luck, Camilla C

    2015-11-01

    Selective sensitization has been proposed as an alternative explanation for enhanced responding to animal fear-relevant stimuli--snakes and spiders--during extinction of Pavlovian fear conditioning. The current study sought to replicate the phenomenon using a shock workup procedure as the sensitizing manipulation and to extend it to interpersonal and intergroup fear-relevant stimuli--angry faces and other-race faces. Assessment of selective sensitization was followed by a one-trial fear learning procedure. Selective sensitization, larger electrodermal responses to fear-relevant than to control stimuli after sensitization, or a larger increase in electrodermal responding to fear-relevant than to control stimuli after sensitization was observed across stimulus domains. However, the one-trial fear learning procedure failed to provide evidence for enhanced fear conditioning to fear-relevant stimuli. One-trial fear learning was either absent or present for fear-relevant and nonfear-relevant stimuli. The current study confirms that electrodermal responses to fear-relevant stimuli across stimulus domains are subject to selective sensitization. PMID:26283264

  20. Are anxiety and fear separable emotions in driving? A laboratory study of behavioural and physiological responses to different driving environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnard, M P; Chapman, P

    2016-01-01

    Research into anxiety and driving has indicated that those higher in anxiety are potentially more dangerous on the roads. However, simulator findings suggest that conclusions are mixed at best. It is possible that anxiety is becoming confused with fear, which has a focus on more clearly defined sources of threat from the environment, as opposed to the internal, thought-related process associated with anxiety. This research aimed to measure feelings of fear, as well as physiological and attentional reactions to increasing levels of accident risk. Trait anxiety was also measured to see if it interacted with levels of risk or its associated reactions. Participants watched videos of driving scenarios with varying levels of accident risk and had to rate how much fear they would feel if they were the driver of the car, whilst skin conductance, heart rate, and eye movements were recorded. Analysis of the data suggested that perceptions of fear increased with increasing levels of accident risk, and skin conductance reflected this pattern. Eye movements, when considered alongside reaction times, indicated different patterns of performance according to different dangerous situations. These effects were independent of trait anxiety, which was only associated with higher rates of disliking driving and use of maladaptive coping mechanisms on questionnaires. It is concluded that these results could provide useful evidence in support for training-based programmes; it may also be beneficial to study trait anxiety within a more immersive driving environment and on a larger scale. PMID:26536073

  1. Fear of crime: Methodological considerations and results from a biannual survey in the city of Oporto

    OpenAIRE

    Celina Manita; Carla Machado

    2009-01-01

    This article presents the main results of a biannual inquiry on fear of crime in the city of Oporto (Portugal). Given the ongoing controversy on fear of crime measurement, we developed an instrument that: (a) differentiates between fear, risk and perceived seriousness of crime, (b) includes multiple levels of measurement, both general and specific, and (c) provides multiple measures of fear. Data were also collected on contextual clues that increase judgments of risk, defensive measures adopt...

  2. Animal models of fear relapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goode, Travis D; Maren, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Whereas fear memories are rapidly acquired and enduring over time, extinction memories are slow to form and are susceptible to disruption. Consequently, behavioral therapies that involve extinction learning (e.g., exposure therapy) often produce only temporary suppression of fear and anxiety. This review focuses on the factors that are known to influence the relapse of extinguished fear. Several phenomena associated with the return of fear after extinction are discussed, including renewal, spontaneous recovery, reacquisition, and reinstatement. Additionally, this review describes recent work, which has focused on the role of psychological stress in the relapse of extinguished fear. Recent developments in behavioral and pharmacological research are examined in light of treatment of pathological fear in humans. PMID:25225304

  3. Implications of newborn amygdala connectivity for fear and cognitive development at 6-months-of-age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Alice M; Buss, Claudia; Rasmussen, Jerod M; Rudolph, Marc D; Demeter, Damion V; Gilmore, John H; Styner, Martin; Entringer, Sonja; Wadhwa, Pathik D; Fair, Damien A

    2016-04-01

    The first year of life is an important period for emergence of fear in humans. While animal models have revealed developmental changes in amygdala circuitry accompanying emerging fear, human neural systems involved in early fear development remain poorly understood. To increase understanding of the neural foundations of human fear, it is important to consider parallel cognitive development, which may modulate associations between typical development of early fear and subsequent risk for fear-related psychopathology. We, therefore, examined amygdala functional connectivity with rs-fcMRI in 48 neonates (M=3.65 weeks, SD=1.72), and measured fear and cognitive development at 6-months-of-age. Stronger, positive neonatal amygdala connectivity to several regions, including bilateral anterior insula and ventral striatum, was prospectively associated with higher fear at 6-months. Stronger amygdala connectivity to ventral anterior cingulate/anterior medial prefrontal cortex predicted a specific phenotype of higher fear combined with more advanced cognitive development. Overall, findings demonstrate unique profiles of neonatal amygdala functional connectivity related to emerging fear and cognitive development, which may have implications for normative and pathological fear in later years. Consideration of infant fear in the context of cognitive development will likely contribute to a more nuanced understanding of fear, its neural bases, and its implications for future mental health. PMID:26499255

  4. The Flexibility of Emotional Attention: Accessible Social Identities Guide Rapid Attentional Orienting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosch, Tobias; Van Bavel, Jay J.

    2012-01-01

    There is extensive evidence that emotional--especially threatening--stimuli rapidly capture attention. These findings are often explained in terms of a hard-wired and relatively inflexible fear module. We propose an alternative, more flexible mechanism, arguing that motivational relevance is the crucial factor driving rapid attentional orienting.…

  5. Are fear memories erasable? –reconsolidation of learned fear with fear relevant and fear-irrelevant stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armita Golkar

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Recent advances in the field of fear learning have demonstrated that a single reminder exposure prior to extinction training can prevent the return of extinguished fear by disrupting the process of reconsolidation. These findings have however proven hard to replicate in humans. Given the significant implications of preventing the return of fear, the purpose of the present study was to further study the prerequisites for the putative effects of disrupting reconsolidation. In two experiments, we assessed whether extinction training initiated within the reconsolidation time window could abolish the return of fear using fear-relevant (experiment 1 or fear-irrelevant (experiment 2 conditioned stimuli (CS. In both experiments, participants went through conditioning, extinction and reinstatement testing on three consecutive days, with one of two reinforced CS being reactivated 10 minutes prior to extinction. We found that a single reminder exposure prior to extinction training did not prevent the return of extinguished fear responding using either fear-relevant or fear-irrelevant CSs. Our findings point to the need to further study the specific parameters that enable disruption of reconsolidation.

  6. The increased risk of road crashes in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD adult drivers: driven by distraction? Results from a responsibility case-control study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamal El Farouki

    Full Text Available Both distractions (external and internal and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD are serious risk factors for traffic crashes and injuries. However, it is still unknown if ADHD (a chronic condition modifies the effect of distractions (irregular hazards on traffic crashes. The objective of this study was to assess the effects of distractions and ADHD on traffic crash responsibility.A responsibility case-control study was conducted in the adult emergency department of Bordeaux University Hospital, France. Subjects were recruited among drivers injured in a motor vehicle crash between April 2010 and August 2011. Responsibility levels were estimated using a standardized method. Frequencies of exposures were compared between drivers responsible and drivers not responsible for the crash. Independent risk factors were identified using a multivariate logistic regression including test interactions between distractions and ADHD.A total of 777 subjects were included in the analysis. Factors associated with responsibility were distraction induced by an external event (adjusted OR (aOR = 1.47; 95% confidence interval (CI [1.06-2.05], distraction induced by an internal thought (aOR = 2.38; CI: [1.50-3.77] and ADHD (aOR = 2.18 CI: [1.22-3.88]. The combined effect of ADHD and external distractions was strongly associated with responsibility for the crash (aOR = 5.79 CI: [2.06-16.32]. Interaction assessment showed that the attributable proportion due to the interaction among participants with both exposures was 68%.Adults with ADHD are a population at higher risk of being responsible for a road traffic crash when exposed to external distractions. This result reinforces the need to diagnose adult ADHD and to include road safety awareness messages delivered by the physician. Developing advanced driver assistance systems devoted to the management of attention lapses is also increasingly relevant for these drivers.

  7. Methylphenidate-Elicited Dopamine Increases in Ventral Striatum Are Associated with Long-Term Symptom Improvement in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Volkow N. D.; Wang G.; Volkow, N.D.; Wang, G.-J.; Tomasi, D.; Kollins, S.H.; Wigal, T.L.; Newcorn, J.H.; Telang, F.W.; Fowler, J.S.; Logan, J.; Wong, C.T.; Swanson, J.M.

    2012-01-18

    Stimulant medications, such as methylphenidate, which are effective treatments for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), enhance brain dopamine signaling. However, the relationship between regional brain dopamine enhancement and treatment response has not been evaluated. Here, we assessed whether the dopamine increases elicited by methylphenidate are associated with long-term clinical response. We used a prospective design to study 20 treatment-naive adults with ADHD who were evaluated before treatment initiation and after 12 months of clinical treatment with a titrated regimen of oral methylphenidate. Methylphenidate-induced dopamine changes were evaluated with positron emission tomography and [{sup 11}C]raclopride (D{sub 2}/D{sub 3} receptor radioligand sensitive to competition with endogenous dopamine). Clinical responses were assessed using the Conners Adult ADHD Rating Scale and revealed a significant reduction in symptoms of inattention and hyperactivity with long-term methylphenidate treatment. A challenge dose of 0.5 mg/kg intravenous methylphenidate significantly increased dopamine in striatum (assessed as decreases in D{sub 2}/D{sub 3} receptor availability). In the ventral striatum, these dopamine increases were associated with the reductions in ratings of symptoms of inattention with clinical treatment. Statistical parametric mapping additionally showed dopamine increases in prefrontal and temporal cortices with intravenous methylphenidate that were also associated with decreases in symptoms of inattention. Our findings indicate that dopamine enhancement in ventral striatum (the brain region involved with reward and motivation) was associated with therapeutic response to methylphenidate, further corroborating the relevance of the dopamine reward/motivation circuitry in ADHD. It also provides preliminary evidence that methylphenidate-elicited dopamine increases in prefrontal and temporal cortices may also contribute to the clinical response.

  8. Methylphenidate-Elicited Dopamine Increases in Ventral Striatum Are Associated with Long-Term Symptom Improvement in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stimulant medications, such as methylphenidate, which are effective treatments for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), enhance brain dopamine signaling. However, the relationship between regional brain dopamine enhancement and treatment response has not been evaluated. Here, we assessed whether the dopamine increases elicited by methylphenidate are associated with long-term clinical response. We used a prospective design to study 20 treatment-naive adults with ADHD who were evaluated before treatment initiation and after 12 months of clinical treatment with a titrated regimen of oral methylphenidate. Methylphenidate-induced dopamine changes were evaluated with positron emission tomography and (11C)raclopride (D2/D3 receptor radioligand sensitive to competition with endogenous dopamine). Clinical responses were assessed using the Conners Adult ADHD Rating Scale and revealed a significant reduction in symptoms of inattention and hyperactivity with long-term methylphenidate treatment. A challenge dose of 0.5 mg/kg intravenous methylphenidate significantly increased dopamine in striatum (assessed as decreases in D2/D3 receptor availability). In the ventral striatum, these dopamine increases were associated with the reductions in ratings of symptoms of inattention with clinical treatment. Statistical parametric mapping additionally showed dopamine increases in prefrontal and temporal cortices with intravenous methylphenidate that were also associated with decreases in symptoms of inattention. Our findings indicate that dopamine enhancement in ventral striatum (the brain region involved with reward and motivation) was associated with therapeutic response to methylphenidate, further corroborating the relevance of the dopamine reward/motivation circuitry in ADHD. It also provides preliminary evidence that methylphenidate-elicited dopamine increases in prefrontal and temporal cortices may also contribute to the clinical response.

  9. Cortisol modifies extinction learning of recently acquired fear in men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merz, Christian Josef; Hermann, Andrea; Stark, Rudolf; Wolf, Oliver Tobias

    2014-09-01

    Exposure therapy builds on the mechanism of fear extinction leading to decreased fear responses. How the stress hormone cortisol affects brain regions involved in fear extinction in humans is unknown. For this reason, we tested 32 men randomly assigned to receive either 30 mg hydrocortisone or placebo 45 min before fear extinction. In fear acquisition, a picture of a geometrical figure was either partially paired (conditioned stimulus; CS+) or not paired (CS-) with an electrical stimulation (unconditioned stimulus; UCS). In fear extinction, each CS was presented again, but no UCS occurred. Cortisol increased conditioned skin conductance responses in early and late extinction. In early extinction, higher activation towards the CS- than to the CS+ was found in the amygdala, hippocampus and posterior parahippocampal gyrus. This pattern might be associated with the establishment of a new memory trace. In late extinction, the placebo compared with the cortisol group displayed enhanced CS+/CS- differentiation in the amygdala, medial frontal cortex and nucleus accumbens. A change from early deactivation to late activation of the extinction circuit as seen in the placebo group seems to be needed to enhance extinction and to reduce fear. Cortisol appears to interfere with this process thereby impairing extinction of recently acquired conditioned fear. PMID:23945999

  10. Anxiety, fears, and phobias in persons with Williams syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dykens, Elisabeth M

    2003-01-01

    Although much research has focused on the cognitive-linguistic profile associated with Williams syndrome, studies have yet to follow up on preliminary observations suggesting increased anxiety and fears in persons with this disorder. To this aim, Study 1 compared fears in 120 participants with Williams syndrome to 70 appropriately matched persons with mental retardation of mixed etiologies. Study 2 assessed differences in parent versus child reports of fears in 36 Williams syndrome and 24 comparison group parent-child dyads. In Study 3, rates of phobia and other anxiety disorders were assessed in standardized psychiatric interviews with the parents of 51 individuals with Williams syndrome. Relative to their counterparts, persons with Williams syndrome had significantly more fears as well as a wider range of frequently occurring fears, as reported by either parents or participants themselves. Children in both groups reported more fears than their parents. Whereas generalized and anticipatory anxiety were found in 51% to 60% of the sample with Williams syndrome, specific phobia was more prevalent, with 96% showing persistent and marked fears and 84% avoiding their fears or enduring them with distress. The feasibility of cognitive-behavioral treatments for phobia is discussed, as are implications for future research. PMID:12730029

  11. Font Size Matters—Emotion and Attention in Cortical Responses to Written Words

    OpenAIRE

    Mareike Bayer; Werner Sommer; Annekathrin Schacht

    2012-01-01

    For emotional pictures with fear-, disgust-, or sex-related contents, stimulus size has been shown to increase emotion effects in attention-related event-related potentials (ERPs), presumably reflecting the enhanced biological impact of larger emotion-inducing pictures. If this is true, size should not enhance emotion effects for written words with symbolic and acquired meaning. Here, we investigated ERP effects of font size for emotional and neutral words. While P1 and N1 amplitu...

  12. Exploring Fear: Rousseau, Dewey, and Freire on Fear and Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    English, Andrea; Stengel, Barbara

    2010-01-01

    Fear is not the first feature of educational experience associated with the best-known progressive educational theorists--Jean-Jacques Rousseau, John Dewey, and Paolo Freire. But each of these important thinkers did, in fact, have something substantive to say about how fear functions in the processes of learning and growth. Andrea English and…

  13. Early Preferential Responses to Fear Stimuli in Human Right Dorsal Visual Stream - A Meg Study

    OpenAIRE

    Meeren, Hanneke K. M.; Hadjikhani, Nouchine; Ahlfors, Seppo P.; Hamalainen, Matti S.; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2015-01-01

    Emotional expressions of others are salient biological stimuli that automatically capture attention and prepare us for action. We investigated the early cortical dynamics of automatic visual discrimination of fearful body expressions by monitoring cortical activity using magnetoencephalography. We show that right parietal cortex distinguishes between fearful and neutral bodies as early as 80-ms after stimulus onset, providing the first evidence for a fast emotion-attention-action link through...

  14. The learning of fear extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furini, Cristiane; Myskiw, Jociane; Izquierdo, Ivan

    2014-11-01

    Recent work on the extinction of fear-motivated learning places emphasis on its putative circuitry and on its modulation. Extinction is the learned inhibition of retrieval of previously acquired responses. Fear extinction is used as a major component of exposure therapy in the treatment of fear memories such as those of the posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is initiated and maintained by interactions between the hippocampus, basolateral amygdala and ventromedial prefrontal cortex, which involve feedback regulation of the latter by the other two areas. Fear extinction depends on NMDA receptor activation. It is positively modulated by d-serine acting on the glycine site of NMDA receptors and blocked by AP5 (2-amino-5-phosphono propionate) in the three structures. In addition, histamine acting on H2 receptors and endocannabinoids acting on CB1 receptors in the three brain areas mentioned, and muscarinic cholinergic fibers from the medial septum to hippocampal CA1 positively modulate fear extinction. Importantly, fear extinction can be made state-dependent on circulating epinephrine, which may play a role in situations of stress. Exposure to a novel experience can strongly enhance the consolidation of fear extinction through a synaptic tagging and capture mechanism; this may be useful in the therapy of states caused by fear memory like PTSD. PMID:25452113

  15. Heritability of fear: Ukrainian experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.V. Filiptsova

    2014-10-01

    Conclusions: The conducted research demonstrated genetic component presence for nine types of fear – psychic disorder development, complications in personal life, making responsible decisions, senility, closed spaces, sexual dysfunction, suicide commission, speaking in public, and aggressive behavior possibility to relatives. It helps to consider these fear perspectives for further molecular-genetic analysis in Ukraine.

  16. Sociological Predictors of Fear of Crime: Is It Social Capital or Social Control?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Önder KARAKUŞ

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Sociological predictors of fear of crime among a clustered sample of 1800 participants residing in 60 different neighborhoods in İstanbul have been examined in this study. Bivariate and multivariate analyses indicate that women, elderly and those who have been victimized in the last five years havehigher rates of fear than males, younger people and those who were not victimized in the last five years respectively. Among sociological factors, while social capital decreases individuals’ fear of crime; unexpectedly, social control increases fear of crime. Perceived physical and social disorder in the neighborhood, on the other hand, increases fear of crime. Based on a comparative investigation of the relationships among fear,social capital, and social control with Western countries, thisstudy also presents policy implications and suggestions for future studies aimed at decreasing fear of crime and increasing social organization and social control in Turkish society.

  17. Stability of driving fear acquisition pathways over one year.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, J E; Deane, F P; Podd, J V

    1999-10-01

    The present study was conducted in response to increasing concerns about the potential unreliability of retrospective accounts in assessing the origins of fears and phobias. Some investigators [e.g. Menzies, R.G., & Clarke, J.C. (1993). The etiology of fear of heights and its relationship to severity and individual response patterns. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 31, 355-365; Kirkby, K.C., Menzies, R.G., Daniels, B.A., & Smith, K.L. (1995). Aetiology of spider phobia: Classificatory differences between two origins instruments. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 33, 955-958; King, N.J., Gullone, E., & Ollendick, T.H. (1998). Etiology of childhood phobias: current status of Rachman's three pathways theory. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 36, 297-309.] have questioned the reliability of retrospective reports at a single assessment point, although the test-retest reliability of such accounts has yet to be examined. The aim of the present study was to conduct a one-year follow-up of the subclinical driving-fearful sample studied by Taylor and Deane [Taylor, J. E., & Deane, F. P. (1999). Acquisition and severity of driving-related fears. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 37, 435-449.] to primarily investigate, the stability of fear onset ascriptions and fear severity over time. 85 respondents completed a questionnaire which assessed fear origins, anxiety response patterns, and additional fear-relevant events occurring over the year. The results suggest that retrospective accounts of fear onset may be quite unstable over time, although this instability does not clearly appear to be related to intervening events, and limitations of the study make these results inconclusive. Fear-relevant negative thinking worsened over time, while physiological reactions and general anxiety remained relatively stable. The theoretical, methodological and clinical implications of the findings are discussed, along with suggestions for future research. PMID:10472710

  18. Shifting Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingram, Jenni

    2014-01-01

    This article examines the shifts in attention and focus as one teacher introduces and explains an image that represents the processes involved in a numeric problem that his students have been working on. This paper takes a micro-analytic approach to examine how the focus of attention shifts through what the teacher and students do and say in the…

  19. Impact of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD on prescription dug spending for children and adolescents: increasing relevance of health economic evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schlander Michael

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background During the last decade, pharmaceutical spending for patients with attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD has been escalating internationally. Objectives First, to estimate future trends of ADHD-related drug expenditures from the perspectives of the statutory health insurance (SHI; Gesetzliche Krankenversicherung, GKV in Germany and the National Health Service (NHS in England, respectively, for children and adolescents age 6 to 18 years. Second, to evaluate the budgetary impact on individual prescribers (child and adolescent psychiatrists and pediatricians treating patients with ADHD in Germany. Methods A model was developed to predict plausible scenarios of future pharmaceutical expenditures for treatment of ADHD. Model inputs were derived from demographic and epidemiological data, a literature review of past spending trends, and an analysis of new pharmaceutical products in development for ADHD. Only products in clinical development phase III or later were considered. Uncertainty was addressed by way of scenario analysis. For each jurisdiction, five scenarios used different assumptions of future diagnosis prevalence, treatment prevalence, rates of adoption and unit costs of novel drugs, and treatment intensity. Results Annual ADHD pharmacotherapy expenditures for children and adolescents will further increase and may exceed €310 m (D; E: ₤78 m in 2012 (2002: ~€21.8 m; ~₤7.0 m. During this period, overall drug spending by individual physicians may increase 2.3- to 9.5-fold, resulting from the multiplicative effects of four variables: increased number of diagnosed cases, growing acceptance and intensity of pharmacotherapy, and higher unit costs of novel medications. Discussion Even for an extreme low case scenario, a more than six-fold increase of pharmaceutical spending for children and adolescents is predicted over the decade from 2002 to 2012, from the perspectives of both the NHS in England and the GKV in

  20. Fear of contagion and AIDS: nurses' perception of risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallop, R M; Lancee, W J; Taerk, G; Coates, R A; Fanning, M

    1992-01-01

    Nurses' fear of contagion when caring for persons with AIDS remains high despite increased levels of knowledge. This paper examines the multiple factors that contribute to nurses' perception of risk within the workplace. The authors suggests that constructs from theories such as decision making, psychoanalysis and cognitive psychology can provide insight into the assessment of risk. Findings from a recent survey of nurses are used to illustrate the complex nature of fear of contagion. Understanding this complexity may be an essential first step in order to provide opportunities for resolution of fears and modification of behaviors. PMID:1562626

  1. Panic-like defensive behavior but not fear-induced antinociception is differently organized by dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamic nuclei of Rattus norvegicus (Rodentia, Muridae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.F. Biagioni

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The hypothalamus is a forebrain structure critically involved in the organization of defensive responses to aversive stimuli. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic dysfunction in dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamic nuclei is implicated in the origin of panic-like defensive behavior, as well as in pain modulation. The present study was conducted to test the difference between these two hypothalamic nuclei regarding defensive and antinociceptive mechanisms. Thus, the GABA A antagonist bicuculline (40 ng/0.2 µL or saline (0.9% NaCl was microinjected into the dorsomedial or posterior hypothalamus in independent groups. Innate fear-induced responses characterized by defensive attention, defensive immobility and elaborate escape behavior were evoked by hypothalamic blockade of GABA A receptors. Fear-induced defensive behavior organized by the posterior hypothalamus was more intense than that organized by dorsomedial hypothalamic nuclei. Escape behavior elicited by GABA A receptor blockade in both the dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamus was followed by an increase in nociceptive threshold. Interestingly, there was no difference in the intensity or in the duration of fear-induced antinociception shown by each hypothalamic division presently investigated. The present study showed that GABAergic dysfunction in nuclei of both the dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamus elicit panic attack-like defensive responses followed by fear-induced antinociception, although the innate fear-induced behavior originates differently in the posterior hypothalamus in comparison to the activity of medial hypothalamic subdivisions.

  2. Panic-like defensive behavior but not fear-induced antinociception is differently organized by dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamic nuclei of Rattus norvegicus (Rodentia, Muridae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biagioni, A.F.; Silva, J.A.; Coimbra, N.C.

    2012-01-01

    The hypothalamus is a forebrain structure critically involved in the organization of defensive responses to aversive stimuli. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic dysfunction in dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamic nuclei is implicated in the origin of panic-like defensive behavior, as well as in pain modulation. The present study was conducted to test the difference between these two hypothalamic nuclei regarding defensive and antinociceptive mechanisms. Thus, the GABAA antagonist bicuculline (40 ng/0.2 µL) or saline (0.9% NaCl) was microinjected into the dorsomedial or posterior hypothalamus in independent groups. Innate fear-induced responses characterized by defensive attention, defensive immobility and elaborate escape behavior were evoked by hypothalamic blockade of GABAA receptors. Fear-induced defensive behavior organized by the posterior hypothalamus was more intense than that organized by dorsomedial hypothalamic nuclei. Escape behavior elicited by GABAA receptor blockade in both the dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamus was followed by an increase in nociceptive threshold. Interestingly, there was no difference in the intensity or in the duration of fear-induced antinociception shown by each hypothalamic division presently investigated. The present study showed that GABAergic dysfunction in nuclei of both the dorsomedial and posterior hypothalamus elicit panic attack-like defensive responses followed by fear-induced antinociception, although the innate fear-induced behavior originates differently in the posterior hypothalamus in comparison to the activity of medial hypothalamic subdivisions. PMID:22437484

  3. Public fear of nuclear technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Excessive fear of nuclear technology (EFONT) is estimated to affect from 35-50 percent of the U.S. public, EFONT is defined as an unpleasant state of fear with components of stress and anxiety, threat to security, and anger. The cognitive aspect of EFONT involves perception of risks, benefits, and values which reinforce and perpetuate the fear. EFONT can be reduced through communications and outreach programs by providing basic information, encouraging participation, and targeting misinformation. Risks need to be put in perspective and benefits made explicit. Safety messages should be combined with other information. Understanding and patience are indispensable in dealing with those who are afraid

  4. Revealed Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Masatlioglu, Yusufcan; NAKAJIMA, Daisuke; Ozbay, Erkut Y

    2012-01-01

    The standard revealed preference argument relies on an implicit assumption that a decision maker considers all feasible alternatives. The marketing and psychology literatures, however, provide wellestablished evidence that consumers do not consider all brands in a given market before making a purchase (Limited Attention). In this paper, we illustrate how one can deduce both the decision maker's preference and the alternatives to which she pays attention and inattention from the observed behav...

  5. Revealed Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Yusufcan Masatlioglu; Daisuke Nakajima; Ozbay, Erkut Y

    2012-01-01

    The standard revealed preference argument relies on an implicit assumption that a decision maker considers all feasible alternatives. The marketing and psychology literatures, however, provide well-established evidence that consumers do not consider all brands in a given market before making a purchase (Limited Attention). In this paper, we illustrate how one can deduce both the decision maker's preference and the alternatives to which she pays attention and inattention from the observed beha...

  6. Victims' Responses to Stalking: An Examination of Fear Levels and Coping Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podaná, Zuzana; Imríšková, Romana

    2016-03-01

    Fear for the stalking victim's own safety or the safety of people close to them is of primary research interest due to the fact that fear is often required as a necessary condition for repetitive intrusive behavior to be defined as stalking. This study examines factors that increase levels of fear in stalking victims and analyzes their coping strategies, making use of data from a victimization survey among citizens of the Czech Republic (N = 2,503). Overall, 147 stalking victims were identified in the sample. Results show that female victims, those stalked by male offenders, and victims pursued over a long period of time, are most fearful. Higher levels of fear are elicited by strangers as opposed to partners or acquaintances. Among stalking practices, only direct aggression is significantly associated with fear, whereas monitoring the victim (comprising typical stalking behavior such as following the victim) increases the perception of the seriousness of stalking, but does not influence the victim's fear. In addition, three behavioral coping strategies have been identified: proactive behavior (47% of victims), avoidance (30%), and passivity (23%). The examination of the association between these coping strategies and victims' fear reveals that female victims, whose behavior is proactive, express higher levels of fear than male victims and than those choosing avoidance or passivity strategies. Overall, the study confirms gender differences in both the level of fear and coping strategies, and lends further support to appeals for eliminating the fear requirement from the stalking definition. PMID:25392391

  7. Shared Attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shteynberg, Garriy

    2015-09-01

    Shared attention is extremely common. In stadiums, public squares, and private living rooms, people attend to the world with others. Humans do so across all sensory modalities-sharing the sights, sounds, tastes, smells, and textures of everyday life with one another. The potential for attending with others has grown considerably with the emergence of mass media technologies, which allow for the sharing of attention in the absence of physical co-presence. In the last several years, studies have begun to outline the conditions under which attending together is consequential for human memory, motivation, judgment, emotion, and behavior. Here, I advance a psychological theory of shared attention, defining its properties as a mental state and outlining its cognitive, affective, and behavioral consequences. I review empirical findings that are uniquely predicted by shared-attention theory and discuss the possibility of integrating shared-attention, social-facilitation, and social-loafing perspectives. Finally, I reflect on what shared-attention theory implies for living in the digital world. PMID:26385997

  8. Prior fear conditioning and reward learning interact in fear and reward networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dominik R Bach

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The ability to flexibly adapt responses to changes in the environment is important for survival. Previous research in humans separately examined the mechanisms underlying acquisition and extinction of aversive and appetitive conditioned responses. It is yet unclear how aversive and appetitive learning interact on a neural level during counterconditioning in humans. This functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI study investigated the interaction of fear conditioning and subsequent reward learning. In the first phase (fear acquisition, images predicted aversive electric shocks or no aversive outcome. In the second phase (counterconditioning, half of the CS+ and CS- were associated with monetary reward in the absence of electric stimulation. The third phase initiated reinstatement of fear through presentation of electric shocks, followed by CS presentation in the absence of shock or reward. Results indicate that participants were impaired at learning the reward contingencies for stimuli previously associated with shock. In the counterconditioning phase, prior fear association interacted with reward representation in the amygdala, where activation was decreased for rewarded compared to unrewarded CS- trials, while there was no reward-related difference in CS+ trials. In the reinstatement phase, an interaction of previous fear association and previous reward status was observed in a reward network consisting of substantia nigra / ventral tegmental area (SN/VTA, striatum and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC, where activation was increased by previous reward association only for CS- but not for CS+ trials. These findings suggest that during counterconditioning, prior fear conditioning interferes with reward learning, subsequently leading to lower activation of the reward network.

  9. Stimulation of serotonin 2A receptors facilitates consolidation and extinction of fear memory in C57BL/6J mice

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Gongliang; Asgeirsdottir, Herborg N.; Cohen, Sarah J.; Munchow, Alcira H.; Barrera, Mercy P.; Stackman, Robert W.

    2012-01-01

    Excessive fear is a hallmark of several emotional and mental disorders such as phobias and panic disorders. Considerable attention is focused on defining the neurobiological mechanisms of the extinction of conditioned fear memory in an effort to identify mechanisms that may hold clinical significance for remediating aberrant fear memory. Serotonin modulates the acquisition and retention of conditioned emotional memory, and the serotonin 2A receptor (5HT2AR) may be one of the postsynaptic targ...

  10. Study to develop educational products about the fear of new energy technologies. Phase II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fear of nuclear power was found in the study sample to be widespread and far more intense than fear of any other energy source. Fears were greatest of waste disposal and accidents, with fear of what is not known being especially common. Many fears appeared to be based on lack of information. Both general and specific fears of nuclear power were significantly reduced by reading an educational booklet. After reading this booklet study subjects reported less extreme views of nuclear power, seeing it to be more similar to other energy sources. This decline in fear of nuclear power did not produce a proportionate increase in support for nuclear power as a source of electricity

  11. MODERN IDEOLOGIES OF MANAGING FEAR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oksana Konstantinovna Vasilchenko

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The subject of the article is a studying of modern ideologies of managing fear. The purpose of the article is to examine the managing fear practice and explain how it is used in the policy of homeland security. The research methodology is based on the general scientific methods such as analysis and synthesis, induction and deduction and special kind of theoretical me-thods such as studying literature about the problem. The study can be used in courses on social philosophy and political science. The author concludes that social fears are very effective instrument of influence with mass consciousness. The authorities need to legitimize their political decisions through public opinion. But before that they should form it. The author shows how policy of homeland security helps to produce fears in society and how politicians intentionally exaggerate them. In this regard the author considers a concept of homeland security which can eliminate the negative sides of homeland security in future.

  12. Examining the Fears of Gifted Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tippey, Jacalyn G.; Burnham, Joy J.

    2009-01-01

    Few studies have considered the fears of gifted children. Using the American Fear Survey Schedule for Children (FSSC-AM; Burnham, 1995), a modified version of the Australian Fear Survey Schedule for Children-II (Gullone & King, 1992, 1993), this study focused on the fears of 287 gifted children ages 7-10. This study is a first step in developing…

  13. The developmental emergence of unconscious fear processing from eyes during infancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jessen, Sarah; Grossmann, Tobias

    2016-02-01

    From early in life, emotion detection plays an important role during social interactions. Recently, 7-month-old infants have been shown to process facial signs of fear in others without conscious perception and solely on the basis of their eyes. However, it is not known whether unconscious fear processing from eyes is present before 7months of age or only emerges at around 7months. To investigate this question, we measured 5-month-old infants' event-related potentials (ERPs) in response to subliminally presented fearful and non-fearful eyes and compared these with 7-month-old infants' ERP responses from a previous study. Our ERP results revealed that only 7-month-olds, but not 5-month-olds, distinguished between fearful and non-fearful eyes. Specifically, 7-month-olds' processing of fearful eyes was reflected in early visual processes over occipital cortex and later attentional processes over frontal cortex. This suggests that, in line with prior work on the conscious detection of fearful faces, the brain processes associated with the unconscious processing of fearful eyes develop between 5 and 7months of age. More generally, these findings support the notion that emotion perception and the underlying brain processes undergo critical change during the first year of life. Therefore, the current data provide further evidence for viewing infancy as a formative period in human socioemotional functioning. PMID:26493612

  14. Commentary about fear of movement

    OpenAIRE

    K. Meyer

    2010-01-01

    Chronic pain influences many aspects of a patient’s life and often results in physical disability. There are many concepts to explain this condition of disability. For example, several psychological variables like coping with pain, depression, hypervigilance, catastrophizing and fear avoidance are considered in literature to play an important role. In Vlaeyen’s model of fear avoidance, he proposes that in a first step negative affectivity and threatening illness information could trigger the ...

  15. Computerized Dental Injection Fear Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heaton, L.J.; Leroux, B.G.; Ruff, P.A.; Coldwell, S.E.

    2013-01-01

    One in four adults reports a clinically significant fear of dental injections, leading many to avoid dental care. While systematic desensitization is the most common therapeutic method for treating specific phobias such as fear of dental injections, lack of access to trained therapists, as well as dentists’ lack of training and time in providing such a therapy, means that most fearful individuals are not able to receive the therapy needed to be able to receive necessary dental treatment. Computer Assisted Relaxation Learning (CARL) is a self-paced computerized treatment based on systematic desensitization for dental injection fear. This multicenter, block-randomized, dentist-blind, parallel-group study conducted in 8 sites in the United States compared CARL with an informational pamphlet in reducing fear of dental injections. Participants completing CARL reported significantly greater reduction in self-reported general and injection-specific dental anxiety measures compared with control individuals (p < .001). Twice as many CARL participants (35.3%) as controls (17.6%) opted to receive a dental injection after the intervention, although this was not statistically significant. CARL, therefore, led to significant changes in self-reported fear in study participants, but no significant differences in the proportion of participants having a dental injection (ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00609648). PMID:23690352

  16. Glucocorticoids reduce phobic fear in humans

    OpenAIRE

    Soravia, Leila M; Heinrichs, Markus; Aerni, Amanda; Maroni, Caroline; Schelling, Gustav; Ehlert, Ulrike; Roozendaal, Benno; de Quervain, Dominique J.-F.

    2006-01-01

    Phobias are characterized by excessive fear, cued by the presence or anticipation of a fearful situation. Whereas it is well established that glucocorticoids are released in fearful situations, it is not known whether these hormones, in turn, modulate perceived fear. As extensive evidence indicates that elevated glucocorticoid levels impair the retrieval of emotionally arousing information, they might also inhibit retrieval of fear memory associated with phobia and, thereby, reduce phobic fea...

  17. Dental Fear among Medical and Dental Undergraduates

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Objective. To assess the prevalence and level of dental fear among health related undergraduates and to identify factors causing such fear using Kleinknecht's Dental Fear Survey (DFS) questionnaire. Methods. Kleinknecht's DFS questionnaire was used to assess dental fear and anxiety among the entire enrollment of the medical and dental undergraduates' of the University of Malaya. Results. Overall response rate was 82.2%. Dental students reported higher prevalence of dental fear (96.0% versus 9...

  18. A window of vulnerability: impaired fear extinction in adolescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Kathryn D; Den, Miriam L; Graham, Bronwyn M; Richardson, Rick

    2014-09-01

    There have been significant advances made towards understanding the processes mediating extinction of learned fear. However, despite being of clear theoretical and clinical significance, very few studies have examined fear extinction in adolescence, which is often described as a developmental window of vulnerability to psychological disorders. This paper reviews the relatively small body of research examining fear extinction in adolescence. A prominent finding of this work is that adolescents, both humans and rodents, exhibit a marked impairment in extinction relative to both younger (e.g., juvenile) and older (e.g., adult) groups. We then review some potential mechanisms that could produce the striking extinction deficit observed in adolescence. For example, one neurobiological candidate mechanism for impaired extinction in adolescence involves changes in the functional connectivity within the fear extinction circuit, particularly between prefrontal cortical regions and the amygdala. In addition, we review research on emotion regulation and attention processes that suggests that developmental changes in attention bias to threatening cues may be a cognitive mechanism that mediates age-related differences in extinction learning. We also examine how a differential reaction to chronic stress in adolescence impacts upon extinction retention during adolescence as well as in later life. Finally, we consider the findings of several studies illustrating promising approaches that overcome the typically-observed extinction impairments in adolescent rodents and that could be translated to human adolescents. PMID:24513634

  19. Should We Fear Derivatives?

    OpenAIRE

    Rene M. Stulz

    2004-01-01

    This paper discusses the extent to which derivatives pose threats to firms and to the economy. After reviewing the derivatives markets and putting in perspective the various measures of the size of these markets, the paper shows who uses derivatives and why. The difficulties firms face in valuing derivatives portfolios are evaluated. Although academics pay much attention to no-arbitrage pricing results, the paper points out that there can be considerable subjectivity in the pricing of derivat...

  20. Attention Sensor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Börner, Dirk; Kalz, Marco; Specht, Marcus

    2014-01-01

    This software sketch was used in the context of an experiment for the PhD project “Ambient Learning Displays”. The sketch comprises a custom-built attention sensor. The sensor measured (during the experiment) whether a participant looked at and thus attended a public display. The sensor was built us

  1. Teens’ Attention to Crime and Emergency Programs on Television as a Predictor and Mediator of Increased Risk Perceptions Regarding Alcohol-Related Injuries

    OpenAIRE

    Slater, Michael D.; Jain, Parul

    2011-01-01

    This study examined the hypotheses that media exposure and attention would predict, and partially mediate, the effects of various individual-difference variables on alcohol-related risk perceptions among teen viewers of crime and emergency (e.g. medical drama) shows on television. Risk perceptions including perceived severity, perceived alcohol-attributable fraction of incidents involving alcohol, controllability, and concern regarding alcohol-related crime, assaults, and other injuries were ...

  2. Early-adult correlates of maltreatment in girls with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: Increased risk for internalizing symptoms and suicidality

    OpenAIRE

    GUENDELMAN, MAYA D.; Owens, Elizabeth B.; GALÁN, CHARDEE; GARD, ARIANNA; Hinshaw, Stephen P.

    2015-01-01

    We examined whether maltreatment experienced in childhood and/or adolescence prospectively predicts young adult functioning in a diverse and well-characterized sample of females with childhood-diagnosed attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (N = 140). Participants were part of a longitudinal study and carefully evaluated in childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood (Mage = 9.6, 14.3, and 19.7 years, respectively), with high retention rates across time. A thorough review of multisource da...

  3. Psychosis and violence: stories, fears, and reality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Pamela J

    2008-10-01

    Individuals with psychosis are often feared. In fact, they are themselves likely to be victims of violence; however, the main aim of this review is to provide an overview of the evidence on relations between psychosis and violence to others. The terms psychosis and violence were used in a literature search limited to the Cochrane Library and PubMed, a manual search of 8 journals, and a follow-up of additional references in the articles found. The overview draws on new empirical data and major reviews. Almost all sound epidemiologic data on psychosis and violence dates from 1990. There is consistency on a small but significant relation between schizophrenia and violent acts. Since then there has also been movement toward understanding the nature of associations and progress on strategies for managing individuals who have psychosis and are violent. Public fears about individuals with psychotic illnesses are largely unfounded, although there would be benefit in greater attention to the safety of those in their close social circle. The task for the next 10 years must be the development and application of knowledge to improve specific treatments-that is, interventions that go beyond holding and caring to bring about substantial change. PMID:18940033

  4. The Basolateral Amygdala Determines the Effects of Fear Memory on Sleep in an Animal Model of PTSD

    OpenAIRE

    Wellman, Laurie L.; Fitzpatrick, Mairen E.; Machida, Mayumi; Sanford, Larry D.

    2014-01-01

    Fear conditioning (inescapable shock training (ST)) and fearful context re-exposure (CR) alone can produce significant fear indicated by increased freezing and reductions in subsequent REM sleep. Damage to or inactivation of the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala (BLA) prior to or after ST or prior to CR generally has been found to attenuate freezing in the shock training context. However, no one has examined the impact of BLA inactivation on fear-induced changes in sleep. Here, we used the ...

  5. Fear and its implications for stock markets

    CERN Document Server

    Simonsen, I; Jensen, M H; Donangelo, R; Sneppen, K; Simonsen, Ingve; Ahlgren, Peter Toke Heden; Jensen, Mogens H.; Donangelo, Raul; Sneppen, Kim

    2006-01-01

    The value of stocks indices, and other assets, are examples of stochastic processes that drop and raise in unpredictable ways. In this paper, we discuss certain asymmetries in short term price movements that can not be attributed to a long term increasing trend. These empirical asymmetries predict that price drops in stock indices on a relatively short time scale are more common than the corresponding price raises, and we present several empirical examples of such asymmetries. Furthermore, a simple model is introduced with the aim of explaining these facts. The prime idea is to introduce occasional, short periods of dropping stock prices that are synchronized for all stocks of the index. These collective negative price movements are imagined to be triggered by external factors in our society that create fear for the future among the investors. In the model this is parameterized by a ``fear factor'' defining how often such events take place. It is demonstrated that such a simple fear factor model can reproduce...

  6. How Administration of the Beta-Blocker Propranolol Before Extinction can Prevent the Return of Fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroes, Marijn C W; Tona, Klodiana-Daphne; den Ouden, Hanneke E M; Vogel, Susanne; van Wingen, Guido A; Fernández, Guillén

    2016-05-01

    Combining beta-blockers with exposure therapy has been advocated to reduce fear, yet experimental studies combining beta-blockers with memory reactivation have had contradictory results. We explored how beta-blockade might affect the course of safety learning and the subsequent return of fear in a double-blind placebo-controlled functional magnetic resonance imaging study in humans (N=46). A single dose of propranolol before extinction learning caused a loss of conditioned fear responses, and prevented the subsequent return of fear and decreased explicit memory for the fearful events in the absence of drug. Fear-related neural responses were persistently attenuated in the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), increased in the hippocampus 24 h later, and correlated with individual behavioral indices of fear. Prediction error-related responses in the ventral striatum persisted during beta-blockade. We suggest that this pattern of results is most consistent with a model where beta-blockade can prevent the return of fear by (i) reducing retrieval of fear memory, via the dmPFC and (ii) increasing contextual safety learning, via the hippocampus. Our findings suggest that retrieval of fear memory and contextual safety learning form potential mnemonic target mechanisms to optimize exposure-based therapy with beta-blockers. PMID:26462618

  7. Early adversity disrupts the adult use of aversive prediction errors to reduce fear in uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina M Wright

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Early life adversity increases anxiety in adult rodents and primates, and increases the risk for developing post-traumatic disorder (PTSD in humans. We hypothesized that early adversity impairs the use of learning signals – negative, aversive prediction errors – to reduce fear in uncertainty. To test this hypothesis, we gave adolescent rats a battery of adverse experiences then assessed adult performance in probabilistic Pavlovian fear conditioning and fear extinction. Rats were confronted with three cues associated with different probabilities of foot shock: one cue never predicted shock, another cue predicted shock with uncertainty, and a final cue always predicted shock. Control rats initially acquired fear to all cues, but rapidly reduced fear to the non-predictive and uncertain cues. Early adversity rats were slower to reduce fear to the non-predictive cue and never fully reduced fear to the uncertain cue. In extinction, all cues were presented in the absence of shock. Fear to the uncertain cue in discrimination, but not early adversity itself, predicted the reduction of fear in extinction. These results demonstrate early adversity impairs the use of negative, aversive prediction errors to reduce fear, especially in situations of uncertainty.

  8. Stimulus fear-relevance and the vicarious learning pathway to childhood fears

    OpenAIRE

    Askew, C.; Dunne, G.; Ozdil, A; Reynolds, G; Field, A.P.

    2013-01-01

    Enhanced fear learning for fear-relevant stimuli has been demonstrated in procedures with adults in the laboratory. Three experiments investigated the effect of stimulus fear-relevance on vicarious fear learning in children (aged 6-11 years). Pictures of stimuli with different levels of fear-relevance (flowers, caterpillars, snakes, worms, and Australian marsupials) were presented alone or together with scared faces. In line with previous studies, children's fear beliefs and avoidance prefere...

  9. Neural correlates of individual differences in fear learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacNamara, Annmarie; Rabinak, Christine A; Fitzgerald, Daniel A; Zhou, Xiaohong Joe; Shankman, Stewart A; Milad, Mohammed R; Phan, K Luan

    2015-01-01

    Variability in fear conditionability is common, and clarity regarding the neural regions responsible for individual differences in fear conditionability could uncover brain-based biomarkers of resilience or vulnerability to trauma-based psychopathologies (e.g., post-traumatic stress disorder). In recent years, neuroimaging work has yielded a detailed understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying fear conditioning common across participants, however only a minority of studies have investigated the brain basis of inter-individual variation in fear learning. Moreover, the majority of these studies have employed small sample sizes (mean n=17; range n=5-27) and all have failed to meet the minimum recommended sample size for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of individual differences. Here, using fMRI, we analyzed blood-oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) response recorded simultaneously with skin conductance response (SCR) and ratings of unconditioned stimulus (US) expectancy in 49 participants undergoing Pavlovian fear conditioning. On average, participants became conditioned to the conditioned stimulus (CS+; higher US expectancy ratings and SCR for the CS+ compared to the unpaired conditioned stimulus, CS-); the CS+ also robustly increased activation in the bilateral insula. Amygdala activation was revealed from a regression analysis that incorporated individual differences in fear conditionability (i.e., a between-subjects regressor of mean CS+>CS- SCR). By replicating results observed using much smaller sample sizes, the results confirm that variation in amygdala reactivity covaries with individual differences in fear conditionability. The link between behavior (SCR) and brain (amygdala reactivity) may be a putative endophenotype for the acquisition of fear memories. PMID:25819422

  10. Attention Sensor

    OpenAIRE

    Börner, Dirk; KALZ Marco; Specht, Marcus

    2014-01-01

    This software sketch was used in the context of an experiment for the PhD project “Ambient Learning Displays”. The sketch comprises a custom-built attention sensor. The sensor measured (during the experiment) whether a participant looked at and thus attended a public display. The sensor was built using the Processing 1.5.1 development environment and the open source computer vision library OpenCV for Processing. Available under the GNU LGPL licence version 3 or higher.

  11. Neural mechanisms of impaired fear inhibition in posttraumatic stress disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanja eJovanovic

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD can develop in some individuals who are exposed to an event that causes extreme fear, horror, or helplessness (APA, 1994. PTSD is a complex and heterogeneous disorder, which is often co-morbid with depression, substance abuse, and anxiety disorders such as panic or social phobia. Given this complexity, progress in the field can be greatly enhanced by focusing on phenotypes that are more proximal to the neurobiology of the disorder. Such neurobiological intermediate phenotypes can provide investigative tools to increase our understanding of the roots of the disorder and develop better prevention or intervention programs. In the present paper, we argue that the inhibition of fear responses is an intermediate phenotype that is related to both the neurocircuitry associated with the disorder, and is linked to its clinical symptoms. An advantage of focusing on fear inhibition is that the neurobiology of fear has been well investigated in animal models providing the necessary groundwork in understanding alterations. Furthermore, because many paradigms can be tested across species, fear inhibition is an ideal translational tool. Here we review both the behavioral tests and measures of fear inhibition and the related neurocircuitry in neuroimaging studies with both healthy and clinical samples.

  12. Memory-emotional interactions as revealed by fear generalization in animal-fearful individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopp, Bruno; Schlimm, Mike; Hermann, Christiane

    2005-06-01

    Discriminative fear learning and fear generalization were examined in animal-fearful individuals and in control participants. Electrical shocks were administered contingent upon discriminative pictures of spiders or snakes, respectively, in a generalization-after-discrimination paradigm. Neither discriminative fear learning nor extinction was affected by the individual fear status of the animal categories. Novel feared stimuli, which resembled discriminative stimuli, were treated as more shock predictive than novel non-feared stimuli during generalization testing. Neither preparedness theory nor selective sensitization theory was capable to account for these observations. The findings are commensurable with the hypothesis that phobic fear interferes with the retrieval of memory traces. PMID:15814082

  13. Fear of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and fear of other illness in suicide

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aro, A R; Jallinoja, P T; Henriksson, M M; Lönnqvist, J K

    1994-01-01

    other suicides. Suicidal fear of AIDS calls for evaluation of sexual and other risk behaviour, but fear of AIDS was largely generated by the extensive media coverage. Fear of other somatic illness was more diverse in origin and related to illness experiences. Suicidal fear of illness calls for......Suicide victims with fear of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) or other somatic illness were compared for psychosocial and health-related characteristics, triggers and content of fear. Fear of AIDS cases (n = 28), 2% of the 1-year Finnish suicide population (n = 1397), were younger and...... recognition of depression and differentiation of the origin and content of fear....

  14. Fear experience reading: women reading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sofia VALDIVIESO GÁMEZ

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Starting from the assumptions the patriarchal paradigm has used in the construction of male and female identity, the changes experienced by women in the last century and the statements about fear undergone by more than twenty-five women from different ages and nationalities through their own life cycle, the author gives us an account on what women fear and how they live and overcome it. These ideas are based on the hypothesis that if patriarchy as a social organization is a cultural constant, the fears experienced by women in the process of constructing themselves as such are also constant. She concludes that the only course to follow is necessarily a way where feminine consciousness must be integrated, both in men and women, as a previous step in the construction of a reality based on equals, though, at the same time, different. This would allow us to discover the masculine and feminine dimension in all of us.

  15. Early-adult correlates of maltreatment in girls with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: Increased risk for internalizing symptoms and suicidality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guendelman, Maya D; Owens, Elizabeth B; Galán, Chardee; Gard, Arianna; Hinshaw, Stephen P

    2016-02-01

    We examined whether maltreatment experienced in childhood and/or adolescence prospectively predicts young adult functioning in a diverse and well-characterized sample of females with childhood-diagnosed attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (N = 140). Participants were part of a longitudinal study and carefully evaluated in childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood (M age = 9.6, 14.3, and 19.7 years, respectively), with high retention rates across time. A thorough review of multisource data reliably established maltreatment status for each participant (M κ = 0.78). Thirty-two (22.9%) participants experienced at least one maltreatment type (physical abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect). Criterion variables included a broad array of young adult measures of functioning gleaned from multiple-source, multiple-informant instruments. With stringent statistical control of demographic, prenatal, and family status characteristics as well as baseline levels of the criterion variable in question, maltreated participants were significantly more impaired than nonmaltreated participants with respect to self-harm (suicide attempts), internalizing symptomatology (anxiety and depression), eating disorder symptomatology, and well-being (lower overall self-worth). Effect sizes were medium. Comprising the first longitudinal evidence linking maltreatment with key young adult life impairments among a carefully diagnosed and followed sample of females with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, these findings underscore the clinical importance of trauma experiences within this population. PMID:25723055

  16. The Effect of Fear Appeal HIV-AIDS Social Marketing on Behaviour: Evaluating the Importance of Market Segmentation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlize TERBLANCHE-SMIT

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The increase in various social problems has caused practitioners to review fear appeals in order to influence behaviour. The Aids pandemic is a major concern and some advertising campaigns do not seem to be producing the expected results. This study used structural equation modelling to investigate whether the use of fear increases the likelihood of adopting appropriate behaviour pertaining to HIV/Aids prevention. Fear, attitude towards the advertisements, severity, susceptibility and efficacy were examined to ascertain the influence of fear appeals on a specific market segment. The findings of this paper indicate a relationship among susceptibility, fear, attitude and behavioural intent.

  17. Altered resting-state brain activity at functional MRI during automatic memory consolidation of fear conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Tingyong; Feng, Pan; Chen, Zhencai

    2013-07-26

    Investigations of fear conditioning in rodents and humans have illuminated the neural mechanisms of fear acquisition and extinction. However, the neural mechanism of automatic memory consolidation of fear conditioning is still unclear. To address this question, we measured brain activity following fear acquisition using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI). In the current study, we used a marker of fMRI, amplitude of low-frequency (0.01-0.08Hz) fluctuation (ALFF) to quantify the spontaneous brain activity. Brain activity correlated to fear memory consolidation was observed in parahippocampus, insula, and thalamus in resting-state. Furthermore, after acquired fear conditioning, compared with control group some brain areas showed ALFF increased in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in the experimental group, whereas some brain areas showed decreased ALFF in striatal regions (caudate, putamen). Moreover, the change of ALFF in vmPFC was positively correlated with the subjective fear ratings. These findings suggest that the parahippocampus, insula, and thalamus are the neural substrates of fear memory consolidation. The difference in activity could be attributed to a homeostatic process in which the vmPFC and ACC were involved in the fear recovery process, and change of ALFF in vmPFC predicts subjective fear ratings. PMID:23726994

  18. Fear of crime: Methodological considerations and results from a biannual survey in the city of Oporto

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celina Manita

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the main results of a biannual inquiry on fear of crime in the city of Oporto (Portugal. Given the ongoing controversy on fear of crime measurement, we developed an instrument that: (a differentiates between fear, risk and perceived seriousness of crime, (b includes multiple levels of measurement, both general and specific, and (c provides multiple measures of fear. Data were also collected on contextual clues that increase judgments of risk, defensive measures adopted by subjects and fear narratives. This instrument was first applied in 1997, to a sample of 467 subjects and again in 1999, to a sample of 500 subjects. Both studies evidence a high level of fear from crime in the population of Oporto, accompanied by a global perception of raising crime rates. Consistent with these high fear results, subjects resort to several defensive measures, mostly of an avoiding nature. Women and lower class subjects tend to report higher fear levels. Despite these global findings, fear levels (both general and between age groups vary substantially according to the different measures used, providing a more complex analysis of the pattern of results usually found in fear of crime research.

  19. The Fear of Contact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumas, S.

    The search for intelligent alien civilisation is one of the great challenges for mankind. The project to explore the thousand of nearby stars has just begun and may take a long time to be completed. It is not certain that a civilisation at a communication distance exists but the search has to be done. Another similar activity is concerned by the transmission of messages to alien civilisation. It is not an answer to a detected message by SETI but a transmission of messages to potential candidates. Over the past years, questions have been raised to the potential danger for Earth of such activity. It is not a secret that METI goal is to attract attention and invite an answer from a nearby civilisation. It is not a physical answer such as a visiting star ship but a simple radio signal. This paper will present arguments to support METI and refute the idea of danger.

  20. Fear experience reading: women reading

    OpenAIRE

    Sofia VALDIVIESO GÁMEZ

    2009-01-01

    Starting from the assumptions the patriarchal paradigm has used in the construction of male and female identity, the changes experienced by women in the last century and the statements about fear undergone by more than twenty-five women from different ages and nationalities through their own life cycle, the author gives us an account on what women fear and how they live and overcome it. These ideas are based on the hypothesis that if patriarchy as a social organization is a cultural constant,...

  1. Fear Not: Neurobiological Mechanisms of Fear and Anxiety

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klumpers, F.

    2012-01-01

    Fear is a common, core emotion. Moreover, anxiety disorders are among the most common form of psychiatric disease. In this thesis neuroimaging, genetic, pharmacological, brain stimulation and behavioral techniques were used in healthy subjects and specific patient populations to shed more light on t

  2. Elites and Panic: More to Fear than Fear Itself

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Lee; Chess, Caron

    2008-01-01

    Attributions of panic are almost exclusively directed at members of the general public. Here, we inquire into the relationships between elites and panic. We review current research and theorizing about panic, including problems of identifying when it has occurred. We propose three relationships: elites fearing panic, elites causing panic and…

  3. Fear of blushing : fearful preoccupation irrespective of facial coloration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mulkens, S; de Jong, Peter; Dobbelaar, A; Bogels, SM

    1999-01-01

    Women, with high (n = 29) and low (n = 28) fear of blushing, were exposed to a mild social stressor (watching a television test card in the presence of two male confederates) and to an intense social stressor (watching their own prerecorded 'sing' video, in the presence of two male confederates). Fa

  4. Oxytocin Modulates Amygdala Reactivity to Masked Fearful Eyes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanat, Manuela; Heinrichs, Markus; Mader, Irina; van Elst, Ludger Tebartz; Domes, Gregor

    2015-10-01

    The amygdala reveals enhanced reactivity to fearful eye whites, even when they are backwardly masked by a neutral face and therefore processed with limited visual awareness. In our fMRI study, we investigated whether this effect is indeed associated with fear detection within the eyes of the neutral face mask, or more generally, with reactivity to any salient increase in eye white area. In addition, we examined whether a single dose of intranasal oxytocin would modulate amygdala responses to masked fearful eye whites via a double-blind, placebo-controlled pharmacological protocol. We found that increased amygdala responses to salient changes within a face's eye region occurred specifically for masked fearful eyes but not for similar increases in white area as induced by nonsocial control stimuli. Administration of oxytocin attenuated amygdala responses to masked fearful eye whites. Our results suggest that the amygdala is particularly tuned to potential threat signals from the eye region. The dampening effects of oxytocin on early amygdala reactivity may reflect reduced vigilance for facial threat cues at a preconscious level. Future studies may investigate whether this early modulation accounts for the beneficial effects of oxytocin on social cognition in anxiety-related disorders, as suggested by previous studies. PMID:25881796

  5. Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to Rosbacher drive® and increased attention pursuant to Article 13(5 of Regulation (EC No 1924/2006

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Following an application from Hassia Mineralquellen GmbH & Co KG, submitted for authorisation of a health claim pursuant to Article 13(5 of Regulation (EC No 1924/2006 via the Competent Authority of Germany, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA was asked to deliver an opinion on the scientific substantiation of a health claim related to Rosbacher drive® and increased attention. The Panel considers that Rosbacher drive®, which contains natural mineral water plus grape juice, lemon juice, pomegranate juice, elderberry juice, isomaltulose, sucrose, fructose syrup, caffeine, ascorbic acid and natural flavourings, is sufficiently characterised. The claimed effect, increased attention, is a beneficial physiological effect. The single study which was carried out with Rosbacher drive® was an open-label, non-randomised sequential study and the study did not report on any outcomes of attention. No conclusions can be drawn from this study for the scientific substantiation of the claim. The Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the consumption of Rosbacher drive® and increased attention.

  6. Blindness Biggest Fear for Many Americans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_160254.html Blindness Biggest Fear for Many Americans Losing vision would ... 4, 2016 THURSDAY, Aug. 4, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Blindness is what many Americans fear most, a new ...

  7. Making the invisible visible: fear and disclosure of sexual orientation at work.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ragins, Belle Rose; Singh, Romila; Cornwell, John M

    2007-07-01

    Stigma theory was used to examine the fears underlying the disclosure of a gay identity at work. Using a national sample of 534 gay, lesbian, and bisexual employees, this study examined the antecedents that affect the degree of disclosure of a gay identity at work and, for those who had not disclosed, the factors that influence their fears about full disclosure. Employees reported less fear and more disclosure when they worked in a group that was perceived as supportive and sharing their stigma. Perceptions of past experience with sexual orientation discrimination were related to increased fears but to greater disclosure. For those who had not fully disclosed their stigma, the fears associated with disclosure predicted job attitudes, psychological strain, work environment, and career outcomes. However, actual disclosure was unrelated to these variables. The utility of fear of disclosure for understanding processes underlying the disclosure of gay and other invisible stigmatized identities in the workplace is discussed. PMID:17638468

  8. Fear at the Great Wall

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHARLOTTE; SPIRES

    2011-01-01

    "i’m not going on anything that takes me more than two feet off the ground," Grace was saying.This was classic Grace: She has a morbid fear of—well, everything actually,but in this particular case it was her phobia of heights, heights and cable cars combined specifically.

  9. Fear at the Great Wall

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHARLOTTE SPIRES

    2011-01-01

    “I’m not going on anything that takes me more than two feet off the ground," Grace was saying.This was classic Grace:She has a morbid fear of-well,everything actually,but in this particular case it was her phobia of heights,heights and cable cars combined specifically.

  10. Different Mechanisms of Fear Extinction Dependent on Length of Time since Fear Acquisition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Michael; Myers, Karyn M.; Ressler, Kerry J.

    2006-01-01

    Fear extinction is defined as a decline in conditioned fear responses (CRs) following nonreinforced exposure to a feared conditioned stimulus (CS). Behavioral evidence indicates that extinction is a form of inhibitory learning: Extinguished fear responses reappear with the passage of time (spontaneous recovery), a shift of context (renewal), and…

  11. When the mind forms fear: embodied fear knowledge potentiates bodily reactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    S. Oosterwijk; M. Topper; M. Rotteveel; A.H. Fischer

    2010-01-01

    In the present study, the authors tested whether conceptual fear knowledge can (a) evoke bodily reactions and (b) enhance subsequent bodily reactions to fearful stimuli. Participants unscrambled neutral or fear sentences and subsequently viewed fearful and neutral pictures in combination with startl

  12. Fears of American Children Following Terrorism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnham, Joy J.; Hooper, Lisa M.

    2008-01-01

    Two months after 9/11, the fears of children and adolescents in Grades 2-12 were examined utilizing the American Fear Survey Schedule for Children and Adolescents (FSSC-AM). Fear intensity scores and age and gender differences are reported. Terrorist-related content on the FSSC-AM (e.g., terrorist attacks, our country being invading by enemies)…

  13. Placing prediction into the fear circuit

    OpenAIRE

    McNally, Gavan P.; Johansen, Joshua P.; Blair, Hugh T.

    2011-01-01

    Pavlovian fear conditioning depends on synaptic plasticity at amygdala neurons. Here we review recent electrophysiological, molecular, and behavioral evidence suggesting the existence of a distributed neural circuitry regulating amygdala synaptic plasticity during fear learning. This circuitry, which involves projections from the midbrain periaqueductal gray (PAG) region, can be linked to prediction error and expectation modulation of fear learning as described by associative and computationa...

  14. Gun Attitudes and Fear of Crime.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heath, Linda; Weeks, Kyle; Murphy, Marie Mackay

    1997-01-01

    Using three studies, examined the relationship between attitudes toward guns and fear of crime. Findings indicate a connection between fear of crime and attitudes toward guns: people higher in fear of crime favored gun control. Results also established a relationship between stereotypical beliefs about gun victims and support for gun control. (RJM)

  15. Anxiety, Fears, and Phobias (For Parents)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... fears that stem from childhood experiences. An adult's fear of public speaking may be the result of embarrassment in front of peers many years before. It's important for parents to recognize and identify the signs and symptoms of kids' anxieties so that fears don't get in the way of everyday ...

  16. Public reaction to radiation: fear, anxiety, or phobia?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Public fear reactions to ionizing radiation are discussed in a social psychological context. The common use of the terms fear, anxiety, panic, and phobia is related to their clinical meanings, and the authors stress the importance of caution when using certain psychiatric terms for interpreting public reactions to radiation. Differences related to existing knowledge and belief structures, trust, and preferences, create obstacles to effective communication; however, the study of such differences also offers explanations to different reactions and different viewpoints. More information and communication of radiation, clear behavioral guidelines in situations of increased radiation levels, and respect for citizens' concerns about radiation protection would counterbalance lay people's fears and feelings of vulnerability. Such measures may enhance familiarity with radiation, increase perceived personal control in anxiety-creating situations, and develop trust in authorities and their expertise. (author)

  17. Fluoxetine Facilitates Fear Extinction Through Amygdala Endocannabinoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunduz-Cinar, Ozge; Flynn, Shaun; Brockway, Emma; Kaugars, Katherine; Baldi, Rita; Ramikie, Teniel S; Cinar, Resat; Kunos, George; Patel, Sachin; Holmes, Andrew

    2016-05-01

    Pharmacologically elevating brain endocannabinoids (eCBs) share anxiolytic and fear extinction-facilitating properties with classical therapeutics, including the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, fluoxetine. There are also known functional interactions between the eCB and serotonin systems and preliminary evidence that antidepressants cause alterations in brain eCBs. However, the potential role of eCBs in mediating the facilitatory effects of fluoxetine on fear extinction has not been established. Here, to test for a possible mechanistic contribution of eCBs to fluoxetine's proextinction effects, we integrated biochemical, electrophysiological, pharmacological, and behavioral techniques, using the extinction-impaired 129S1/Sv1mJ mouse strain. Chronic fluoxetine treatment produced a significant and selective increase in levels of anandamide in the BLA, and an associated decrease in activity of the anandamide-catabolizing enzyme, fatty acid amide hydrolase. Slice electrophysiological recordings showed that fluoxetine-induced increases in anandamide were associated with the amplification of eCB-mediated tonic constraint of inhibitory, but not excitatory, transmission in the BLA. Behaviorally, chronic fluoxetine facilitated extinction retrieval in a manner that was prevented by systemic or BLA-specific blockade of CB1 receptors. In contrast to fluoxetine, citalopram treatment did not increase BLA eCBs or facilitate extinction. Taken together, these findings reveal a novel, obligatory role for amygdala eCBs in the proextinction effects of a major pharmacotherapy for trauma- and stressor-related disorders and anxiety disorders. PMID:26514583

  18. Fluoxetine Facilitates Fear Extinction Through Amygdala Endocannabinoids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunduz-Cinar, Ozge; Flynn, Shaun; Brockway, Emma; Kaugars, Katherine; Baldi, Rita; Ramikie, Teniel S; Cinar, Resat; Kunos, George; Patel, Sachin; Holmes, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Pharmacologically elevating brain endocannabinoids (eCBs) share anxiolytic and fear extinction-facilitating properties with classical therapeutics, including the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, fluoxetine. There are also known functional interactions between the eCB and serotonin systems and preliminary evidence that antidepressants cause alterations in brain eCBs. However, the potential role of eCBs in mediating the facilitatory effects of fluoxetine on fear extinction has not been established. Here, to test for a possible mechanistic contribution of eCBs to fluoxetine's proextinction effects, we integrated biochemical, electrophysiological, pharmacological, and behavioral techniques, using the extinction-impaired 129S1/Sv1mJ mouse strain. Chronic fluoxetine treatment produced a significant and selective increase in levels of anandamide in the BLA, and an associated decrease in activity of the anandamide-catabolizing enzyme, fatty acid amide hydrolase. Slice electrophysiological recordings showed that fluoxetine-induced increases in anandamide were associated with the amplification of eCB-mediated tonic constraint of inhibitory, but not excitatory, transmission in the BLA. Behaviorally, chronic fluoxetine facilitated extinction retrieval in a manner that was prevented by systemic or BLA-specific blockade of CB1 receptors. In contrast to fluoxetine, citalopram treatment did not increase BLA eCBs or facilitate extinction. Taken together, these findings reveal a novel, obligatory role for amygdala eCBs in the proextinction effects of a major pharmacotherapy for trauma- and stressor-related disorders and anxiety disorders. PMID:26514583

  19. Increased glutamate-stimulated release of dopamine in substantia nigra of a rat model for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder--lack of effect of methylphenidate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warton, Fleur L; Howells, Fleur M; Russell, Vivienne A

    2009-12-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a behavioural disorder that has been associated with dysfunction of the dopaminergic system. Abnormal dopamine function could be the result of a primary defect in dopamine neurons (neuronal firing, dopamine transporter, synthesis, receptor function) or an indirect result of impaired glutamate and/or noradrenergic regulation of dopamine neurons. There is considerable evidence to suggest that dopamine release is impaired at mesolimbic and nigrostriatal dopaminergic terminals. However, it is not known whether dysregulation occurs at the level of the cell bodies in the ventral tegmental area of the midbrain (VTA) and substantia nigra (SN). An in vitro superfusion technique was used to measure dopamine release in a widely used model of ADHD, the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR), and its normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) control. At approximately 30 days of age, rats were analysed for behavioural differences in the open field in response to acute treatment with methylphenidate (0.5 to 2 mg/kg in condensed milk, oral self-administration). In addition, rats were treated chronically with methylphenidate (2 mg/kg, oral self-administration, twice daily for 14 days from postnatal day 21 to 34) before the VTA and the SN were analysed for glutamate-stimulated and depolarization-evoked release of dopamine in these areas. In support of its use as an animal model for ADHD, SHR were more active in the open field and displayed less anxiety-like behaviour than WKY. Neither strain showed any effect of treatment with methylphenidate. A significant difference was observed in glutamate-stimulated release of dopamine in the SN of SHR and WKY, with SHR releasing more dopamine, consistent with the hypothesis of altered glutamate regulation of dopamine neurons in SHR. PMID:19821016

  20. Race Guides Attention in Visual Search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otten, Marte

    2016-01-01

    It is known that faces are rapidly and even unconsciously categorized into social groups (black vs. white, male vs. female). Here, I test whether preferences for specific social groups guide attention, using a visual search paradigm. In Experiment 1 participants searched displays of neutral faces for an angry or frightened target face. Black target faces were detected more efficiently than white targets, indicating that black faces attracted more attention. Experiment 2 showed that attention differences between black and white faces were correlated with individual differences in automatic race preference. In Experiment 3, using happy target faces, the attentional preference for black over white faces was eliminated. Taken together, these results suggest that automatic preferences for social groups guide attention to individuals from negatively valenced groups, when people are searching for a negative emotion such as anger or fear. PMID:26900957

  1. Race Guides Attention in Visual Search.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marte Otten

    Full Text Available It is known that faces are rapidly and even unconsciously categorized into social groups (black vs. white, male vs. female. Here, I test whether preferences for specific social groups guide attention, using a visual search paradigm. In Experiment 1 participants searched displays of neutral faces for an angry or frightened target face. Black target faces were detected more efficiently than white targets, indicating that black faces attracted more attention. Experiment 2 showed that attention differences between black and white faces were correlated with individual differences in automatic race preference. In Experiment 3, using happy target faces, the attentional preference for black over white faces was eliminated. Taken together, these results suggest that automatic preferences for social groups guide attention to individuals from negatively valenced groups, when people are searching for a negative emotion such as anger or fear.

  2. Race Guides Attention in Visual Search

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otten, Marte

    2016-01-01

    It is known that faces are rapidly and even unconsciously categorized into social groups (black vs. white, male vs. female). Here, I test whether preferences for specific social groups guide attention, using a visual search paradigm. In Experiment 1 participants searched displays of neutral faces for an angry or frightened target face. Black target faces were detected more efficiently than white targets, indicating that black faces attracted more attention. Experiment 2 showed that attention differences between black and white faces were correlated with individual differences in automatic race preference. In Experiment 3, using happy target faces, the attentional preference for black over white faces was eliminated. Taken together, these results suggest that automatic preferences for social groups guide attention to individuals from negatively valenced groups, when people are searching for a negative emotion such as anger or fear. PMID:26900957

  3. Recognizing Student Fear: The Elephant in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bledsoe, T. Scott; Baskin, Janice J.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding fear, its causes, and its impact on students can be important for educators who seek ways to help students manage their fears. This paper explores common types of student fears such as performance-based anxiety, fear of failure, fear of being laughed at, and cultural components of fear that impact learning. The cognitive, emotional,…

  4. Worrying Affects Associative Fear Learning: A Startle Fear Conditioning Study

    OpenAIRE

    Gazendam, F.J.; Kindt, M

    2012-01-01

    A valuable experimental model for the pathogenesis of anxiety disorders is that they originate from a learned association between an intrinsically non-aversive event (Conditioned Stimulus, CS) and an anticipated disaster (Unconditioned Stimulus, UCS). Most anxiety disorders, however, do not evolve from a traumatic experience. Insights from neuroscience show that memory can be modified post-learning, which may elucidate how pathological fear can develop after relatively mild aversive events. W...

  5. Enhanced fear expression in a psychopathological mouse model of trait anxiety: pharmacological interventions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone B Sartori

    Full Text Available The propensity to develop an anxiety disorder is thought to be determined by genetic and environmental factors. Here we investigated the relationship between a genetic predisposition to trait anxiety and experience-based learned fear in a psychopathological mouse model. Male CD-1 mice selectively bred for either high (HAB, or normal (NAB anxiety-related behaviour on the elevated plus maze were subjected to classical fear conditioning. During conditioning both mouse lines showed increased fear responses as assessed by freezing behaviour. However, 24 h later, HAB mice displayed more pronounced conditioned responses to both a contextual or cued stimulus when compared with NAB mice. Interestingly, 6 h and already 1 h after fear conditioning, freezing levels were high in HAB mice but not in NAB mice. These results suggest that trait anxiety determines stronger fear memory and/or a weaker ability to inhibit fear responses in the HAB line. The enhanced fear response of HAB mice was attenuated by treatment with either the α(2,3,5-subunit selective benzodiazepine partial agonist L-838,417, corticosterone or the selective neurokinin-1 receptor antagonist L-822,429. Overall, the HAB mouse line may represent an interesting model (i for identifying biological factors underlying misguided conditioned fear responses and (ii for studying novel anxiolytic pharmacotherapies for patients with fear-associated disorders, including post-traumatic stress disorder and phobias.

  6. Laterodorsal tegmentum interneuron subtypes oppositely regulate olfactory cue-induced innate fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Hongbin; Yang, Junhua; Xi, Wang; Hao, Sijia; Luo, Benyan; He, Xiaobin; Zhu, Liya; Lou, Huifang; Yu, Yan-Qin; Xu, Fuqiang; Duan, Shumin; Wang, Hao

    2016-02-01

    Innate fear has a critical role in survival of animals. Unlike conditioned fear, the neuronal circuitry underlying innate fear is largely unknown. We found that the laterodorsal tegmentum (LDT) and lateral habenula (LHb) are specifically activated by the mouse predator odorant trimethylthiazoline (TMT). Using optogenetics to selectively stimulate GABAergic neurons in the LDT immediately produced fear-like responses (freezing, accelerated heart rate and increased serum corticosterone), whereas prolonged stimulation caused anxiety-like behaviors. Notably, although selective stimulation of parvalbumin (PV)-positive interneurons similarly induced fear-like responses, stimulation of somatostatin-positive interneurons or inhibition of PV neurons in the LDT suppressed TMT-induced fear-like responses without affecting conditioned fear. Finally, activation of LHb glutamatergic inputs to LDT interneurons was sufficient to generate fear-like responses. Thus, the LHb-LDT pathway is important for regulating olfactory cue-induced innate fear. Our results provide a potential target for therapeutic intervention for anxiety disorder. PMID:26727549

  7. Dental Fear among Medical and Dental Undergraduates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Hakim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To assess the prevalence and level of dental fear among health related undergraduates and to identify factors causing such fear using Kleinknecht’s Dental Fear Survey (DFS questionnaire. Methods. Kleinknecht’s DFS questionnaire was used to assess dental fear and anxiety among the entire enrollment of the medical and dental undergraduates’ of the University of Malaya. Results. Overall response rate was 82.2%. Dental students reported higher prevalence of dental fear (96.0% versus 90.4%. However, most of the fear encountered among dental students was in the low fear category as compared to their medical counterpart (69.2 versus 51.2%. Significantly more medical students cancelled dental appointment due to fear compared to dental students (P=0.004. “Heart beats faster” and “muscle being tensed” were the top two physiological responses experienced by the respondents. “Drill” and “anesthetic needle” were the most fear provoking objects among respondents of both faculties. Conclusion. Dental fear and anxiety are a common problem encountered among medical and dental undergraduates who represent future health care professionals. Also, high level of dental fear and anxiety leads to the avoidance of the dental services.

  8. Dissociated Roles for the Lateral and Medial Septum in Elemental and Contextual Fear Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calandreau, Ludovic; Jaffard, Robert; Desmedt, Aline

    2007-01-01

    Extensive evidence indicates that the septum plays a predominant role in fear learning, yet the direction of this control is still a matter of debate. Increasing data suggest that the medial (MS) and lateral septum (LS) would be differentially required in fear conditioning depending on whether a discrete conditional stimulus (CS) predicts, or not,…

  9. Associations among Context-Specific Maternal Protective Behavior, Toddlers' Fearful Temperament, and Maternal Accuracy and Goals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiel, Elizabeth J.; Buss, Kristin A.

    2012-01-01

    Maternal protective responses to temperamentally fearful toddlers have previously been found to relate to increased risk for children's development of anxiety-spectrum problems. Not all protective behavior is "overprotective", and not all mothers respond to toddlers' fear with protection. Therefore, the current study aimed to identify conditions…

  10. Fear extinction memory consolidation requires potentiation of pontine-wave activity during REM sleep.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Datta, Subimal; O'Malley, Matthew W

    2013-03-01

    Sleep plays an important role in memory consolidation within multiple memory systems including contextual fear extinction memory, but little is known about the mechanisms that underlie this process. Here, we show that fear extinction training in rats, which extinguished conditioned fear, increased both slow-wave sleep and rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep. Surprisingly, 24 h later, during memory testing, only 57% of the fear-extinguished animals retained fear extinction memory. We found that these animals exhibited an increase in phasic pontine-wave (P-wave) activity during post-training REM sleep, which was absent in the 43% of animals that failed to retain fear extinction memory. The results of this study provide evidence that brainstem activation, specifically potentiation of phasic P-wave activity, during post-training REM sleep is critical for consolidation of fear extinction memory. The results of this study also suggest that, contrary to the popular hypothesis of sleep and memory, increased sleep after training alone does not guarantee consolidation and/or retention of fear extinction memory. Rather, the potentiation of specific sleep-dependent physiological events may be a more accurate predictor for successful consolidation of fear extinction memory. Identification of this unique mechanism will significantly improve our present understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms that underlie the sleep-dependent regulation of emotional memory. Additionally, this discovery may also initiate development of a new, more targeted treatment method for clinical disorders of fear and anxiety in humans that is more efficacious than existing methods such as exposure therapy that incorporate only fear extinction. PMID:23467372

  11. Gaze Behaviors of Preterm and Full-Term Infants in Nonsocial and Social Contexts of Increasing Dynamics: Visual Recognition, Attention Regulation, and Gaze Synchrony

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harel, Hagar; Gordon, Ilanit; Geva, Ronny; Feldman, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    Although research has demonstrated poor visual skills in premature infants, few studies assessed infants' gaze behaviors across several domains of functioning in a single study. Thirty premature and 30 full-term 3-month-old infants were tested in three social and nonsocial tasks of increasing complexity and their gaze behavior was micro-coded. In…

  12. Neural correlates of attention biases, behavioral inhibition, and social anxiety in children: An ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thai, Nhi; Taber-Thomas, Bradley C; Pérez-Edgar, Koraly E

    2016-06-01

    Behavioral inhibition (BI) is a biologically-based temperament characterized by vigilance toward threat. Over time, many children with BI increasingly fear social circumstances and display maladaptive social behavior. BI is also one of the strongest individual risk factors for developing social anxiety disorder. Although research has established a link between BI and anxiety, its causal mechanism remains unclear. Attention biases may underlie this relation. The current study examined neural markers of the BI-attention-anxiety link in children ages 9-12 years (N=99, Mean=9.97, SD=0.97). ERP measures were collected as children completed an attention-bias (dot-probe) task with neutral and angry faces. P2 and N2 amplitudes were associated with social anxiety and attention bias, respectively. Specifically, augmented P2 was related to decreased symptoms of social anxiety and moderated the relation between BI and social anxiety, suggesting that increasing attention mobilization may serve as a compensatory mechanism that attenuates social anxiety in individuals with high BI. The BI by N2 interaction found that larger N2 related to threat avoidance with increasing levels of BI, consistent with over-controlled socio-emotional functioning. Lastly, children without BI (BN) showed an augmented P1 to probes replacing angry faces, suggesting maintenance of attentional resources in threat-related contexts. PMID:27061248

  13. Unemployment (Fears) and Deflationary Spirals

    OpenAIRE

    Den Haan, Wouter; Rendahl, Pontus; Riegler, Markus

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of incomplete markets and sticky nominal wages is shown to magnify business cycles even though these two features – in isolation – dampen them. During recessions, fears of unemployment stir up precautionary sentiments which induces agents to save more. The additional savings may be used as investments in both a productive asset (equity) and an unproductive asset (money). But even a small rise in money demand has important consequences. The desire to hold money puts deflationar...

  14. Unemployment (fears) and deflationary spirals

    OpenAIRE

    Den Haan, Wouter J; Rendah, Pontus; Riegler, Markus

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of incomplete markets and sticky nominal wages is shown to magnify business cycles even though these two features ??? in isolation ??? dampen them. During recessions, fears of unemployment stir up precautionary sentiments which induces agents to save more. The additional savings may be used as investments in both a productive asset (equity) and an unproductive asset (money). But even a small rise in money demand has important consequences. The desire to hold money puts deflati...

  15. Unemployment (Fears) and Deflationary Spirals

    OpenAIRE

    Wouter Den Haan; Pontus Rendahl; Markus Riegler

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of incomplete markets and sticky nominal wages is shown to magnify business cycles even though these two features - in isolation - dampen them. During recessions, fears of unemployment stir up precautionary sentiments which induces agents to save more. The additional savings may be used as investments which induces agents to save more. The additional savings may be used as investments in both a productive asset (equity) and an unproductive asset (money). But even a small rise ...

  16. Trace Fear Conditioning in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Lugo, Joaquin N.; Smith, Gregory D; Holley, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    In this experiment we present a technique to measure learning and memory. In the trace fear conditioning protocol presented here there are five pairings between a neutral stimulus and an unconditioned stimulus. There is a 20 sec trace period that separates each conditioning trial. On the following day freezing is measured during presentation of the conditioned stimulus (CS) and trace period. On the third day there is an 8 min test to measure contextual memory. The representative results are f...

  17. Voluntary exercise during extinction of auditory fear conditioning reduces the relapse of fear associated with potentiated activity of striatal direct pathway neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mika, Agnieszka; Bouchet, Courtney A; Bunker, Preston; Hellwinkel, Justin E; Spence, Katie G; Day, Heidi E W; Campeau, Serge; Fleshner, Monika; Greenwood, Benjamin N

    2015-11-01

    Relapse of previously extinguished fear presents a significant, pervasive obstacle to the successful long-term treatment of anxiety and trauma-related disorders. Thus, identification of a novel means to enhance fear extinction to stand the passage of time and generalize across contexts is of the utmost importance. Acute bouts of exercise can be used as inexpensive, noninvasive treatment strategies to reduce anxiety, and have been shown to enhance memory for extinction when performed in close temporal proximity to the extinction session. However, it is unclear whether acute exercise can be used to prevent relapse of fear, and the neural mechanisms underlying this potential effect are unknown. The current study therefore examined whether acute exercise during extinction of auditory fear can protect against the later relapse of fear. Male F344 rats lacking an extended history of wheel running were conditioned to fear a tone CS and subsequently extinguished within either a freely mobile running wheel, a locked wheel, or a control context lacking a wheel. Rats exposed to fear extinction within a freely mobile wheel ran during fear extinction, and demonstrated reduced fear as well as attenuated corticosterone levels during re-exposure to the extinguished CS during the relapse test in a novel context 1week later. Examination of cfos mRNA patterns elicited by re-exposure to the extinguished CS during the relapse test revealed that acute exercise during extinction decreased activation of brain circuits classically involved in driving fear expression and interestingly, increased activity within neurons of the direct striatal pathway involved in reward signaling. These data suggest that exercise during extinction reduces relapse through a mechanism involving the direct pathway of the striatum. It is suggested that a positive affective state could become associated with the CS during exercise during extinction, thus resulting in a relapse-resistant extinction memory. PMID

  18. Disgust domains in the prediction of contamination fear.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olatunji, BO; Sawchuk, CN; Lohr, JM; de Jong, PJ

    2004-01-01

    Previous research has shown a relationship between the emotion of disgust and the fear of contamination. Heightened sensitivity to disgust and increased concerns over contamination has been observed in various disorders, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and specific phobias. However, ther

  19. Enhanced Generalization of Auditory Conditioned Fear in Juvenile Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Wataru; Pan, Bing-Xing; Yang, Chao; Thakur, Siddarth; Morozov, Alexei

    2009-01-01

    Increased emotionality is a characteristic of human adolescence, but its animal models are limited. Here we report that generalization of auditory conditioned fear between a conditional stimulus (CS+) and a novel auditory stimulus is stronger in 4-5-wk-old mice (juveniles) than in their 9-10-wk-old counterparts (adults), whereas nonassociative…

  20. Fear information and the development of fears during childhood: effects on implicit fear responses and behavioural avoidance

    OpenAIRE

    Field, A. P.; Lawson, J

    2003-01-01

    Field, Argyris and Knowles (Behav Res Ther 39 (2001) 1259), and Field, Hamilton, Knowles and Plews (Behav Res Thera 41 (2003) 113) have developed a prospective paradigm for testing Rachman’s (Behav Res Ther 15 (1977) 375) proposition that fear information is important in the development of fears and phobias in children. Despite this paradigm being an advance on retrospective reports, the research so far has been restricted to self-reported fear beliefs measured after the information is given....

  1. Attentional Lapses of Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in Tasks of Sustained Attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gmehlin, Dennis; Fuermaier, Anselm B M; Walther, Stephan; Tucha, Lara; Koerts, Janneke; Lange, Klaus W; Tucha, Oliver; Weisbrod, Matthias; Aschenbrenner, Steffen

    2016-06-01

    Adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) show attentional dysfunction such as distractibility and mind-wandering, especially in lengthy tasks. However, fundamentals of dysfunction are ambiguous and relationships of neuropsychological test parameters with self-report measures of ADHD symptoms are marginal. We hypothesize that basic deficits in sustaining attention explain more complex attentional dysfunction in persons with ADHD and relate to ADHD symptoms. Attentional function was analyzed by computing ex-Gaussian parameters for 3 time Blocks in a 20 min test of sustained alertness. Changes in performance across these blocks were analyzed by comparing adult persons with ADHD (n = 24) with healthy matched controls (n = 24) and correlated with neuropsychological measures of selective and divided attention as well as self-report measures of ADHD symptoms. We found a significantly steeper increase in the number of slow responses (ex-Gaussian parameter τ) in persons with ADHD with time on task in basic sustained alertness. They also performed significantly worse in tasks of sustained selective and divided attention. However, after controlling for an increase in τ during the alertness task, significant differences between groups disappeared for divided and partly selective attention. Increases in τ in the sustained alertness task correlated significantly with self-report measures of ADHD symptoms. Our results provide evidence that very basic deficits in sustaining attention in adults with ADHD are related to infrequent slow responses (=attentional lapses), with changes over time being relevant for more complex attentional function and experienced ADHD symptoms in everyday life. PMID:27193369

  2. Candesartan ameliorates impaired fear extinction induced by innate immune activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiñones, María M; Maldonado, Lizette; Velazquez, Bethzaly; Porter, James T

    2016-02-01

    Patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) tend to show signs of a relatively increased inflammatory state suggesting that activation of the immune system may contribute to the development of PTSD. In the present study, we tested whether activation of the innate immune system can disrupt acquisition or recall of auditory fear extinction using an animal model of PTSD. Male adolescent rats received auditory fear conditioning in context A. The next day, an intraperitoneal injection of lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 100 μg/kg) prior to auditory fear extinction in context B impaired acquisition and recall of extinction. LPS (100 μg/kg) given after extinction training did not impair extinction recall suggesting that LPS did not affect consolidation of extinction. In contrast to cued fear extinction, contextual fear extinction was not affected by prior injection of LPS (100 μg/kg). Although LPS also reduced locomotion, we could dissociate the effects of LPS on extinction and locomotion by using a lower dose of LPS (50 μg/kg) which impaired locomotion without affecting extinction. In addition, 15 h after an injection of 250 μg/kg LPS in adult rats, extinction learning and recall were impaired without affecting locomotion. A sub-chronic treatment with candesartan, an angiotensin II type 1 receptor blocker, prevented the LPS-induced impairment of extinction in adult rats. Our results demonstrate that activation of the innate immune system can disrupt auditory fear extinction in adolescent and adult animals. These findings also provide direction for clinical studies of novel treatments that modulate the innate immune system for stress-related disorders like PTSD. PMID:26520214

  3. Attention in Urban Foraging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malcolm McCullough

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available This position paper argues how there has to be much more to smart city learning than just wayshowing, and something better as augmented reality than covering the world with instructions. Attention has become something for many people to know better in an age of information superabundance. Embodied cognition explains how the work-ings of attention are not solely a foreground task, as if attention is something to pay. As digital media appear in ever more formats and contexts, their hybrids with physical form increasing influence how habitual engagement with persistent situations creates learning. Ambient information can just add to the distraction by multitasking, or it can support more favorable processes of shifting among different kinds of information with a particular intent. As one word for this latter process, foraging deserves more consideration in smart city learning

  4. Lessons of Fear: A reading of Thucydides

    OpenAIRE

    Desmond, Dr William

    2006-01-01

    It is perhaps a truism that "reason is the slave of the passions" and that dispassionate deliberation can often only serve some deeper, preverbal desire or intuition. Despite this, modern historiography and political science have until recently tended to stress the role of impersonal forces like geography, the market or intellectual precedent upon individual and communal decision making. In more recent years, however, historians have paid increasing attention to the emotions, attention that i...

  5. Representation of patients’ hand modulates fear reactions of patients with spider phobia in virtual reality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik Moriz Peperkorn

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Embodiment (i.e., the involvement of a bodily representation is thought to be relevant in emotional experiences. Virtual reality (VR is a capable means of activating phobic fear in patients. The representation of the patient’s body (e.g., the right hand in VR enhances immersion and increases presence, but its effect on phobic fear is still unknown. We analyzed the influence of the presentation of the participant’s hand in VR on presence and fear responses in 32 women with spider phobia and 32 matched controls. Participants sat in front of a table with an acrylic glass container within reaching distance. During the experiment this setup was concealed by a head-mounted display (HMD. The VR scenario presented via HMD showed the same setup, i.e. a table with an acrylic glass container. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two experimental groups. In one group, fear responses were triggered by fear-relevant visual input in VR (virtual spider in the virtual acrylic glass container, while information about a real but unseen neutral control animal (living snake in the acrylic glass container was given. The second group received fear-relevant information of the real but unseen situation (living spider in the acrylic glass container, but visual input was kept neutral VR (virtual snake in the virtual acrylic glass container. Participants were instructed to touch the acrylic glass container with their right hand in 20 consecutive trials. Visibility of the hand was varied randomly in a within-subjects design. We found for all participants that visibility of the participant’s hand increased presence independently of the fear trigger. However, in patients, the influence of the virtual hand on fear depended on the fear trigger. When fear was triggered perceptually, i.e., by a virtual spider, the virtual hand increased fear. When fear was triggered by information about a real spider, the virtual hand had no effect on fear. Our results shed light

  6. Representation of Patients' Hand Modulates Fear Reactions of Patients with Spider Phobia in Virtual Reality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peperkorn, Henrik M; Diemer, Julia E; Alpers, Georg W; Mühlberger, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Embodiment (i.e., the involvement of a bodily representation) is thought to be relevant in emotional experiences. Virtual reality (VR) is a capable means of activating phobic fear in patients. The representation of the patient's body (e.g., the right hand) in VR enhances immersion and increases presence, but its effect on phobic fear is still unknown. We analyzed the influence of the presentation of the participant's hand in VR on presence and fear responses in 32 women with spider phobia and 32 matched controls. Participants sat in front of a table with an acrylic glass container within reaching distance. During the experiment this setup was concealed by a head-mounted display (HMD). The VR scenario presented via HMD showed the same setup, i.e., a table with an acrylic glass container. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two experimental groups. In one group, fear responses were triggered by fear-relevant visual input in VR (virtual spider in the virtual acrylic glass container), while information about a real but unseen neutral control animal (living snake in the acrylic glass container) was given. The second group received fear-relevant information of the real but unseen situation (living spider in the acrylic glass container), but visual input was kept neutral VR (virtual snake in the virtual acrylic glass container). Participants were instructed to touch the acrylic glass container with their right hand in 20 consecutive trials. Visibility of the hand was varied randomly in a within-subjects design. We found for all participants that visibility of the participant's hand increased presence independently of the fear trigger. However, in patients, the influence of the virtual hand on fear depended on the fear trigger. When fear was triggered perceptually, i.e., by a virtual spider, the virtual hand increased fear. When fear was triggered by information about a real spider, the virtual hand had no effect on fear. Our results shed light on the

  7. Representation of Patients’ Hand Modulates Fear Reactions of Patients with Spider Phobia in Virtual Reality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peperkorn, Henrik M.; Diemer, Julia E.; Alpers, Georg W.; Mühlberger, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Embodiment (i.e., the involvement of a bodily representation) is thought to be relevant in emotional experiences. Virtual reality (VR) is a capable means of activating phobic fear in patients. The representation of the patient’s body (e.g., the right hand) in VR enhances immersion and increases presence, but its effect on phobic fear is still unknown. We analyzed the influence of the presentation of the participant’s hand in VR on presence and fear responses in 32 women with spider phobia and 32 matched controls. Participants sat in front of a table with an acrylic glass container within reaching distance. During the experiment this setup was concealed by a head-mounted display (HMD). The VR scenario presented via HMD showed the same setup, i.e., a table with an acrylic glass container. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two experimental groups. In one group, fear responses were triggered by fear-relevant visual input in VR (virtual spider in the virtual acrylic glass container), while information about a real but unseen neutral control animal (living snake in the acrylic glass container) was given. The second group received fear-relevant information of the real but unseen situation (living spider in the acrylic glass container), but visual input was kept neutral VR (virtual snake in the virtual acrylic glass container). Participants were instructed to touch the acrylic glass container with their right hand in 20 consecutive trials. Visibility of the hand was varied randomly in a within-subjects design. We found for all participants that visibility of the participant’s hand increased presence independently of the fear trigger. However, in patients, the influence of the virtual hand on fear depended on the fear trigger. When fear was triggered perceptually, i.e., by a virtual spider, the virtual hand increased fear. When fear was triggered by information about a real spider, the virtual hand had no effect on fear. Our results shed light on the

  8. Modeling fear-conditioned bradycardia in humans

    OpenAIRE

    Castegnetti, G.; Tzovara, A.; Staib, M.; Paulus, P. C.; Hofer, N.; Bach, D R

    2016-01-01

    Across species, cued fear conditioning is a common experimental paradigm to investigate aversive Pavlovian learning. While fear-conditioned stimuli (CS+) elicit overt behavior in many mammals, this is not the case in humans. Typically, autonomic nervous system activity is used to quantify fear memory in humans, measured by skin conductance responses (SCR). Here, we investigate whether heart period responses (HPR) evoked by the CS, often observed in humans and small mammals, are suitable to co...

  9. Fear Inhibition in High Trait Anxiety

    OpenAIRE

    Merel Kindt; Marieke Soeter

    2014-01-01

    Trait anxiety is recognized as an individual risk factor for the development of anxiety disorders but the neurobiological mechanisms remain unknown. Here we test whether trait anxiety is associated with impaired fear inhibition utilizing the AX+/BX- conditional discrimination procedure that allows for the independent evaluation of startle fear potentiation and inhibition of fear [1]. Sixty undergraduate students participated in the study - High Trait Anxious: n = 28 and Low Trait Anxious: n =...

  10. ON PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS AND FEAR OF DENTISTRY

    OpenAIRE

    Magdalena IORGA; Tudor CIUHODARU

    2016-01-01

    Anxiety and fear are normal reactions in humans when situations are evaluating as being painful. In medical dentistry, anxiety and fear characterize in fact o problematic patient with special reactions during dental interventions and avoidance behavior, both behaviors having a great impact on patient’s dental health. The paper presents some aspects on the psychological profile of odontophobics, causes and consequences of dental fear on patient’s dental health, and some considerations on psych...

  11. Attention, Joint Attention, and Social Cognition

    OpenAIRE

    Mundy, Peter; Newell, Lisa

    2007-01-01

    Before social cognition there is joint processing of information about the attention of self and others. This joint attention requires the integrated activation of a distributed cortical network involving the anterior and posterior attention systems. In infancy, practice with the integrated activation of this distributed attention network is a major contributor to the development of social cognition. Thus, the functional neuroanatomies of social cognition and the anterior–posterior attention ...

  12. [AMYGDALA: NEUROANATOMY AND NEUROPHYSIOLOGY OF FEAR].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsvetkov, E A; Krasnoshchekova, E I; Vesselkin, N P; Kharazova, A D

    2015-01-01

    This work describes neuroanatomical and neurophysiological mechanisms of Pavlovian fear conditioning, focusing on contributions of the amygdala, a subcortical nuclear group, to control of conditioned fear responses. The mechanisms of synaptic plasticity at projections to the amygdala and within amygdala were shown to mediate the formation and retention of fear memory. This work reviews current data on anatomical organization of the amygdala, as well as its afferent and efferent projections, in respect to the role of the amygdala in auditory fear conditioning during which acoustic signals serve as the conditioned stimulus. PMID:26983275

  13. Immediate extinction promotes the return of fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merz, Christian J; Hamacher-Dang, Tanja C; Wolf, Oliver T

    2016-05-01

    Accumulating evidence indicates that immediate extinction is less effective than delayed extinction in attenuating the return of fear. This line of fear conditioning research impacts the proposed onset of psychological interventions after threatening situations. In the present study, forty healthy men were investigated in a differential fear conditioning paradigm with fear acquisition in context A, extinction in context B, followed by retrieval testing in both contexts 24h later to test fear renewal. Differently coloured lights served as conditioned stimuli (CS): two CS (CS+) were paired with an electrical stimulation that served as unconditioned stimulus, the third CS was never paired (CS-). Extinction took place immediately after fear acquisition or 24h later. One CS+ was extinguished whereas the second CS+ remained unextinguished to control for different time intervals between fear acquisition and retrieval testing. Immediate extinction led to larger skin conductance responses during fear retrieval to both the extinguished and unextinguished CS relative to the CS-, indicating a stronger return of fear compared to delayed extinction. Taken together, immediate extinction is less potent than delayed extinction and is associated with a stronger renewal effect. Thus, the time-point of psychological interventions relative to the offset of threatening situations needs to be carefully considered to prevent relapses. PMID:26995309

  14. ON PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS AND FEAR OF DENTISTRY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena IORGA

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Anxiety and fear are normal reactions in humans when situations are evaluating as being painful. In medical dentistry, anxiety and fear characterize in fact o problematic patient with special reactions during dental interventions and avoidance behavior, both behaviors having a great impact on patient’s dental health. The paper presents some aspects on the psychological profile of odontophobics, causes and consequences of dental fear on patient’s dental health, and some considerations on psychological interventions meant at reducing anxiety and fear during dental treatment.

  15. The impact of incidental fear and anger on in- and outgroup attitudes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bukowski Marcin

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this research was to examine the impact of two specific negative emotions of anger and fear on intergroup attitudes. In Study 1 we measured emotions of anger and fear and in Study 2 we evoked these emotions incidentally, that is independently of any intergroup context. In both studies we measured attitudes towards the ingroup (Polish and the outgroup (Gypsies.We expected that fear would lead to more positive ingroup attitudes and anger to more negative outgroup attitudes. The results of the correlational study (Study 1 confirmed the predictions regarding anger and decreased outgroup evaluations, and the experimental study (Study 2 revealed that fear enhanced positivity towards the ingroup, but anger increased negativity towards the outgroup. The impact of fear and anger on social attitudes in the specific context of a negatively self-stereotyped ingroup is discussed.

  16. Kaci Hickox: public health and the politics of fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miles, Steven H

    2015-01-01

    Kaci Hickox was a nurse who worked with persons who were infected with Ebola in West Africa. When she returned to the United States, the governors of New Jersey and Maine intervened to confine her to inpatient quarantine despite the fact that she was asymptomatic and had no serological evidence of infection. She defied the quarantine which resulted in enormous public attention and discussion of quarantine and public fear. This article summarizes the case discussing the history of the case, the government actions, and the final legal rulings. PMID:25856593

  17. Predicting Danger: The Nature, Consequences, and Neural Mechanisms of Predictive Fear Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNally, Gavan P.; Westbrook, R. Frederick

    2006-01-01

    The ability to detect and learn about the predictive relations existing between events in the world is essential for adaptive behavior. It allows us to use past events to predict the future and to adjust our behavior accordingly. Pavlovian fear conditioning allows anticipation of sources of danger in the environment. It guides attention away from…

  18. Averting the Unlikely: Fearing, Assessing, and Preventing Threats of Rampage Violence in American Public Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madfis, Eric

    2012-01-01

    Over the last decade, school rampage shootings have taken multiple lives and caused widespread fear throughout the United States. During this same period, there have also been dozens of averted incidents where student plots to kill multiple peers and faculty members came to the attention of authorities and thus were thwarted. This dissertation…

  19. K-12 Teachers' Perceptions of School Policy and Fear of School Violence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricketts, Melissa L.

    2007-01-01

    Since the 1990s, schools have focused their attention on policies designed to improve school safety. Most researches on school violence policies have concentrated on the needs of students and administrators. This study investigated the impact of school violence policies on K-12 teachers' fear. Using self-report data from 447 K-12 teachers from a…

  20. The effect of disgust and fear modeling on children's disgust and fear for animals

    OpenAIRE

    Askew, Chris; Cakır, Kubra; Poldsam, Liine; Reynolds, Gemma

    2014-01-01

    Disgust is a protective emotion associated with certain types of animal fears. Given that a primary function of disgust is to protect against harm, increasing children’s disgust-related beliefs for animals may affect how threatening they think animals are and their avoidance of them. One way that children’s disgust beliefs for animals might change is via vicarious learning: by observing others responding to the animal with disgust. In Experiment 1, children (ages 7–10 years) were presented wi...

  1. Stress-induced enhancement of fear conditioning and sensitization facilitates extinction-resistant and habituation-resistant fear behaviors in a novel animal model of posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corley, Michael J; Caruso, Michael J; Takahashi, Lorey K

    2012-01-18

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized by stress-induced symptoms including exaggerated fear memories, hypervigilance and hyperarousal. However, we are unaware of an animal model that investigates these hallmarks of PTSD especially in relation to fear extinction and habituation. Therefore, to develop a valid animal model of PTSD, we exposed rats to different intensities of footshock stress to determine their effects on either auditory predator odor fear extinction or habituation of fear sensitization. In Experiment 1, rats were exposed to acute footshock stress (no shock control, 0.4 mA, or 0.8 mA) immediately prior to auditory fear conditioning training involving the pairing of auditory clicks with a cloth containing cat odor. When presented to the conditioned auditory clicks in the next 5 days of extinction testing conducted in a runway apparatus with a hide box, rats in the two shock groups engaged in higher levels of freezing and head out vigilance-like behavior from the hide box than the no shock control group. This increase in fear behavior during extinction testing was likely due to auditory activation of the conditioned fear state because Experiment 2 demonstrated that conditioned fear behavior was not broadly increased in the absence of the conditioned auditory stimulus. Experiment 3 was then conducted to determine whether acute exposure to stress induces a habituation resistant sensitized fear state. We found that rats exposed to 0.8 mA footshock stress and subsequently tested for 5 days in the runway hide box apparatus with presentations of nonassociative auditory clicks exhibited high initial levels of freezing, followed by head out behavior and culminating in the occurrence of locomotor hyperactivity. In addition, Experiment 4 indicated that without delivery of nonassociative auditory clicks, 0.8 mA footshock stressed rats did not exhibit robust increases in sensitized freezing and locomotor hyperactivity, albeit head out vigilance

  2. Factors of Child Dental Fear : A Literature Review of Dental Fear in Children

    OpenAIRE

    Nakata, Ayumi; Sato, Yoko

    2011-01-01

    Objectives. To provide an overview of the literature investigating dental fear in children during the past ten years and to review factors of child dental fear. Methods. The literature was systematically retrieved from an electronic database. The thirty four literatures which were written about the fear of dentistry, psychology and behavior during dental treatment were chosen. Results. The terms of fear being used were “Shika-kyoufu”, “Dental fear”, etc. However, the terms were not de...

  3. CA1-specific deletion of NMDA receptors induces abnormal renewal of a learned fear response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirsch, Silke J; Regmi, Nanda L; Birnbaum, Shari G; Greene, Robert W

    2015-11-01

    CA1 hippocampal N-methyl-d-aspartate-receptors (NMDARs) are necessary for contextually related learning and memory processes. Extinction, a form of learning, has been shown to require intact hippocampal NMDAR signalling. Renewal of fear expression can occur after fear extinction training, when the extinguished fear stimulus is presented in an environmental context different from the training context and thus, renewal is dependent on contextual memory. In this study, we show that a Grin1 knock-out (loss of the essential NR1 subunit for the NMDAR) restricted to the bilateral CA1 subfield of the dorsal hippocampus does not affect acquisition of learned fear, but does attenuate extinction of a cued fear response even when presented in the extinction-training context. We propose that failure to remember the (safe) extinction context is responsible for the abnormal fear response and suggest it is a dysfunctional renewal. The results highlight the difference in outcome of extinguished fear memory resulting from a partial rather than complete loss of function of the hippocampus and suggest a potential mechanism for abnormally increased fear expression in PTSD. PMID:25786918

  4. Pediatric Fear-Avoidance Model of Chronic Pain: Foundation, Application and Future Directions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gordon JG Asmundson

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The fear-avoidance model of chronic musculoskeletal pain has become an increasingly popular conceptualization of the processes and mechanisms through which acute pain can become chronic. Despite rapidly growing interest and research regarding the influence of fear-avoidance constructs on pain-related disability in children and adolescents, there have been no amendments to the model to account for unique aspects of pediatric chronic pain. A comprehensive understanding of the role of fear-avoidance in pediatric chronic pain necessitates understanding of both child/adolescent and parent factors implicated in its development and maintenance. The primary purpose of the present article is to propose an empirically-based pediatric fear-avoidance model of chronic pain that accounts for both child/adolescent and parent factors as well as their potential interactive effects. To accomplish this goal, the present article will define important fear-avoidance constructs, provide a summary of the general fear-avoidance model and review the growing empirical literature regarding the role of fear-avoidance constructs in pediatric chronic pain. Assessment and treatment options for children with chronic pain will also be described in the context of the proposed pediatric fear-avoidance model of chronic pain. Finally, avenues for future investigation will be proposed.

  5. Hippocampal hyperexcitability underlies enhanced fear memories in TgNTRK3, a panic disorder mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Mónica; D'Amico, Davide; Spadoni, Ornella; Amador-Arjona, Alejandro; Stork, Oliver; Dierssen, Mara

    2013-09-18

    Panic attacks are a hallmark in panic disorder (PAND). During the panic attack, a strong association with the surrounding context is established suggesting that the hippocampus may be critically involved in the pathophysiology of PAND, given its role in contextual processing. We previously showed that variation in the expression of the neurotrophin tyrosine kinase receptor type 3 (NTRK3) in both PAND patients and a transgenic mouse model (TgNTRK3) may have a role in PAND pathophysiology. Our study examines hippocampal function and activation of the brain fear network in TgNTRK3 mice. TgNTRK3 mice showed increased fear memories accompanied by impaired extinction, congruent with an altered activation pattern of the amygdala-hippocampus-medial prefrontal cortex fear circuit. Moreover, TgNTRK3 mice also showed an unbalanced excitation-to-inhibition ratio in the hippocampal cornu ammonis 3 (CA3)-CA1 subcircuit toward hyperexcitability. The resulting hippocampal hyperexcitability underlies the enhanced fear memories, as supported by the efficacy of tiagabine, a GABA reuptake inhibitor, to rescue fear response. The fearful phenotype appears to be the result of hippocampal hyperexcitability and aberrant fear circuit activation. We conclude that NTRK3 plays a role in PAND by regulating hippocampus-dependent fear memories. PMID:24048855

  6. Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to Rosbacher drive® and increased attention pursuant to Article 13(5) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006

    OpenAIRE

    EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA)

    2014-01-01

    Following an application from Hassia Mineralquellen GmbH & Co KG, submitted for authorisation of a health claim pursuant to Article 13(5) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 via the Competent Authority of Germany, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) was asked to deliver an opinion on the scientific substantiation of a health claim related to Rosbacher drive® and increased attention. The Panel considers that Rosbacher drive®, which contains natural mineral water plus...

  7. Forming Competing Fear Learning and Extinction Memories in Adolescence Makes Fear Difficult to Inhibit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Kathryn D.; Richardson, Rick

    2015-01-01

    Fear inhibition is markedly impaired in adolescent rodents and humans. The present experiments investigated whether this impairment is critically determined by the animal's age at the time of fear learning or their age at fear extinction. Male rats (n = 170) were tested for extinction retention after conditioning and extinction at different ages.…

  8. I can see, hear, and smell your fear : Comparing olfactory and audiovisual media in fear communication

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Groot, Jasper H B; Semin, Gün R.; Smeets, Monique A M

    2014-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that humans can become fearful after exposure to olfactory fear signals, yet these studies have reported the effects of fear chemosignals without examining emotion-relevant input from traditional communication modalities (i.e., vision, audition). The question that we pursued

  9. Assessing Emotion Sensitivity in Female Offenders With Borderline Personality Symptoms: Results From a Fear-Potentiated Startle Paradigm

    OpenAIRE

    Baskin-Sommers, Arielle R.; Vitale, Jennifer E.; MacCoon, Donal; Newman, Joseph P.

    2012-01-01

    An instructed fear-conditioning paradigm was used to measure fear-potentiated startle (FPS) in a sample of 80 Caucasian, female offenders assessed using the Personality Assessment Inventory-Borderline Features Scale (Morey, 1991). As predicted, women with higher levels of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) symptoms showed significantly greater FPS than women with lower levels when required to focus attention on the threat-relevant dimension of the experimental stimuli. However, FPS was not...

  10. Fear of Pain Mediates the Association between MC1R Genotype and Dental Fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randall, C L; McNeil, D W; Shaffer, J R; Crout, R J; Weyant, R J; Marazita, M L

    2016-09-01

    Fear of pain is experienced in acute and chronic pain populations, as well as in the general population, and it affects numerous aspects of the orofacial pain experience, including pain intensity, pain-related disability, and pain behavior (e.g., avoidance). A related but separate construct-dental fear-is also experienced in the general population, and it influences dental treatment-seeking behavior and oral and systemic health. Minimal work has addressed the role of genetics in the etiologies of fear of pain and dental fear. Limited available data suggest that variants of the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) gene may predict greater levels of dental fear. The MC1R gene also may be etiologically important for fear of pain. This study aimed to replicate the finding that MC1R variant status predicts dental fear and to determine, for the first time, whether MC1R variant status predicts fear of pain. Participants were 817 Caucasian participants (62.5% female; mean ± SD age: 34.7 ± 8.7 y) taking part in a cross-sectional project that identified determinants of oral diseases at the community, family, and individual levels. Participants were genotyped for single-nucleotide polymorphisms on MC1R and completed self-report measures of fear of pain and dental fear. Presence of MC1R variant alleles predicted higher levels of dental fear and fear of pain. Importantly, fear of pain mediated the relation between MC1R variant status and dental fear (B = 1.60, 95% confidence interval: 0.281 to 3.056). MC1R variants may influence orofacial pain perception and, in turn, predispose individuals to develop fears about pain. Such fears influence the pain experience and associated pain behaviors, as well as fears about dental treatment. This study provides support for genetic contributions to the development/maintenance of fear of pain and dental fear, and it offers directions for future research to identify potential targets for intervention in the treatment of fear of pain and dental

  11. Durable fear memories require PSD-95.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzgerald, P J; Pinard, C R; Camp, M C; Feyder, M; Sah, A; Bergstrom, H C; Graybeal, C; Liu, Y; Schlüter, O M; Grant, S G; Singewald, N; Xu, W; Holmes, A

    2015-07-01

    Traumatic fear memories are highly durable but also dynamic, undergoing repeated reactivation and rehearsal over time. Although overly persistent fear memories underlie anxiety disorders, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, the key neural and molecular mechanisms underlying fear memory durability remain unclear. Postsynaptic density 95 (PSD-95) is a synaptic protein regulating glutamate receptor anchoring, synaptic stability and certain types of memory. Using a loss-of-function mutant mouse lacking the guanylate kinase domain of PSD-95 (PSD-95(GK)), we analyzed the contribution of PSD-95 to fear memory formation and retrieval, and sought to identify the neural basis of PSD-95-mediated memory maintenance using ex vivo immediate-early gene mapping, in vivo neuronal recordings and viral-mediated knockdown (KD) approaches. We show that PSD-95 is dispensable for the formation and expression of recent fear memories, but essential for the formation of precise and flexible fear memories and for the maintenance of memories at remote time points. The failure of PSD-95(GK) mice to retrieve remote cued fear memory was associated with hypoactivation of the infralimbic (IL) cortex (but not the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) or prelimbic cortex), reduced IL single-unit firing and bursting, and attenuated IL gamma and theta oscillations. Adeno-associated virus-mediated PSD-95 KD in the IL, but not the ACC, was sufficient to impair recent fear extinction and remote fear memory, and remodel IL dendritic spines. Collectively, these data identify PSD-95 in the IL as a critical mechanism supporting the durability of fear memories over time. These preclinical findings have implications for developing novel approaches to treating trauma-based anxiety disorders that target the weakening of overly persistent fear memories. PMID:25510511

  12. Pair exposure with conspecific during fear conditioning induces the link between freezing and passive avoidance behaviors in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunchan; Noh, Jihyun

    2016-07-01

    Social factor plays an important role in dealing with posttraumatic stress disorder related to excessive physiological fear response and insufficient fear memory extinction of the brain. However, although social circumstances occurred not only during contextual retrieval but also during fear conditioning, most previous studies focused on the advantageous aspects of social buffering in fear retrieval period. To demonstrate the association between fear responses and fear memory from social stimuli during fear conditioning, pair exposed rats with conspecific as social buffering were subjected to a fear conditioning of passive avoidance test to evaluate memory function and freezing behavior. Whereas single exposed rats showed the significant increase of freezing behaviors and passive avoidance behaviors compared to control rats, pair exposed rats showed significant alleviation of the freezing behaviors and passive avoidance behaviors compared to single exposed rats. Furthermore, we determined a significant correlation between freezing and passive avoidance behavioral alteration in pair exposed rats. Taken together, we suggest that pair exposure with conspecific during fear conditioning helps to cope with both freezing response and fear memory systems and their reciprocal interaction has a crucial potential as a resource for the relief of unreasonable stress responses in posttraumatic stress disorder. PMID:26827818

  13. Attention to Faces Expressing Negative Emotion at 7 Months Predicts Attachment Security at 14 Months.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltola, Mikko J; Forssman, Linda; Puura, Kaija; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H; Leppänen, Jukka M

    2015-01-01

    To investigate potential infant-related antecedents characterizing later attachment security, this study tested whether attention to facial expressions, assessed with an eye-tracking paradigm at 7 months of age (N = 73), predicted infant-mother attachment in the Strange Situation Procedure at 14 months. Attention to fearful faces at 7 months predicted attachment security, with a smaller attentional bias to fearful expressions associated with insecure attachment. Attachment disorganization in particular was linked to an absence of the age-typical attentional bias to fear. These data provide the first evidence linking infants' attentional bias to negative facial expressions with attachment formation and suggest reduced sensitivity to facial expressions of negative emotion as a testable trait that could link attachment disorganization with later behavioral outcomes. PMID:26011101

  14. Low-Cost Avoidance Behaviors Are Resistant To Fear Extinction In Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bram eVervliet

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Elevated levels of fear and avoidance are core symptoms across the anxiety disorders. It has long been known that fear serves to motivate avoidance. Consequently, fear extinction has been the primary focus in pre-clinical anxiety research for decades, under the implicit assumption that removing the motivator of avoidance (fear would automatically mitigate the avoidance behaviors as well. Although this assumption has intuitive appeal, it has received little scientific scrutiny. The scarce evidence from animal studies is mixed, while the assumption remains untested in humans. The current study applied an avoidance conditioning protocol in humans to investigate the effects of fear extinction on the persistence of low-cost avoidance. Online danger-safety ratings and skin conductance responses documented the dynamics of conditioned fear across avoidance and extinction phases. Anxiety- and avoidance-related questionnaires explored individual differences in rates of avoidance. Participants first learned to click a button during a predictive danger signal, in order to cancel an upcoming aversive electrical shock (avoidance conditioning. Next, fear extinction was induced by presenting the signal in the absence of shocks while button-clicks were prevented (by removing the button in Experiment 1, or by instructing not to click the button in Experiment 2. Most importantly, post-extinction availaibility of the button caused a significant return of avoidant button-clicks. In addition, trait-anxiety levels correlated positively with rates of avoidance during a predictive safety signal, and with the rate of pre- to post-extinction decrease during this signal. Fear measures gradually decreased during avoidance conditioning, as participants learned that button-clicks effectively canceled the shock. Preventing button-clicks elicited a sharp increase in fear, which subsequently extinguished. Fear remained low during avoidance testing, but danger-safety ratings

  15. Low-Cost Avoidance Behaviors are Resistant to Fear Extinction in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vervliet, Bram; Indekeu, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Elevated levels of fear and avoidance are core symptoms across the anxiety disorders. It has long been known that fear serves to motivate avoidance. Consequently, fear extinction has been the primary focus in pre-clinical anxiety research for decades, under the implicit assumption that removing the motivator of avoidance (fear) would automatically mitigate the avoidance behaviors as well. Although this assumption has intuitive appeal, it has received little scientific scrutiny. The scarce evidence from animal studies is mixed, while the assumption remains untested in humans. The current study applied an avoidance conditioning protocol in humans to investigate the effects of fear extinction on the persistence of low-cost avoidance. Online danger-safety ratings and skin conductance responses documented the dynamics of conditioned fear across avoidance and extinction phases. Anxiety- and avoidance-related questionnaires explored individual differences in rates of avoidance. Participants first learned to click a button during a predictive danger signal, in order to cancel an upcoming aversive electrical shock (avoidance conditioning). Next, fear extinction was induced by presenting the signal in the absence of shocks while button-clicks were prevented (by removing the button in Experiment 1, or by instructing not to click the button in Experiment 2). Most importantly, post-extinction availability of the button caused a significant return of avoidant button-clicks. In addition, trait-anxiety levels correlated positively with rates of avoidance during a predictive safety signal, and with the rate of pre- to post-extinction decrease during this signal. Fear measures gradually decreased during avoidance conditioning, as participants learned that button-clicks effectively canceled the shock. Preventing button-clicks elicited a sharp increase in fear, which subsequently extinguished. Fear remained low during avoidance testing, but danger-safety ratings increased again when

  16. The nuclear energy: law and fear

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This document mentions the feeling of fear which goes along the idea of nuclear energy, as well as ethics and law. Technological aspects, political choices and financial matters are responsible for the nuclear energy development. Then it is shown that the consequences of this development is the continuous feeling of fear and risk which goes with every nuclear activities. (TEC)

  17. The Old English Language of Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Erik A.

    2012-01-01

    This dissertation examines the development of the Old English vocabulary for fear under the influence of the Latinate discourse of Christian doctrine. The first chapter arranges the Old English words for fear into etymologically organized families and describes their incidence and usage across attested corpus of Old English, using the Dictionary…

  18. Interaction between the cholecystokinin and endogenous cannabinoid systems in cued fear expression and extinction retention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowers, Mallory E; Ressler, Kerry J

    2015-02-01

    Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is thought to develop, in part, from improper inhibition of fear. Accordingly, one of the most effective treatment strategies for PTSD is exposure-based psychotherapy. Ideally, neuroscience would inform adjunct therapies that target the neurotransmitter systems involved in extinction processes. Separate studies have implicated the cholecystokinin (CCK) and endocannabinoid systems in fear; however, there is a high degree of anatomical colocalization between the cannabinoid 1 receptor (Cnr1) and CCK in the basolateral amygdala (BLA), a brain region critical for emotion regulation. Although most research has focused on GABA and GABAergic plasticity as the mechanism by which Cnr1 mediates fear inhibition, we hypothesize that a functional interaction between Cnr1 and CCKB receptor (CCKBR) is critical for fear extinction processes. In this study, systemic pharmacological manipulation of the cannabinoid system modulated cued fear expression in C57BL/6J mice after consolidation of auditory fear conditioning. Knockout of the CCKBR, however, had no effect on fear- or anxiety-like behaviors. Nonetheless, administration of a Cnr1 antagonist increased freezing behavior during a cued fear expression test in wild-type subjects, but had no effect on freezing behavior in CCKBR knockout littermates. In addition, we found that Cnr1-positive fibers form perisomatic clusters around CCKBR-positive cell bodies in the BLA. These CCKBR-positive cells comprise a molecularly heterogenous population of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. These findings provide novel evidence that Cnr1 contributes to cued fear expression via an interaction with the CCK system. Dysfunctional Cnr1-CCKBR interactions might contribute to the etiology of, or result from, fear-related psychiatric disease. PMID:25176168

  19. Different brain networks underlying the acquisition and expression of contextual fear conditioning: a metabolic mapping study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Pardo, H; Conejo, N M; Lana, G; Arias, J L

    2012-01-27

    The specific brain regions and circuits involved in the acquisition and expression of contextual fear conditioning are still a matter of debate. To address this issue, regional changes in brain metabolic capacity were mapped during the acquisition and expression of contextual fear conditioning using cytochrome oxidase (CO) quantitative histochemistry. In comparison with a group briefly exposed to a conditioning chamber, rats that received a series of randomly presented footshocks in the same conditioning chamber (fear acquisition group) showed increased CO activity in anxiety-related brain regions like the ventral periaqueductal gray, the ventral hippocampus, the lateral habenula, the mammillary bodies, and the laterodorsal thalamic nucleus. Another group received randomly presented footshocks, and it was re-exposed to the same conditioning chamber one week later (fear expression group). The conditioned group had significantly higher CO activity as compared with the matched control group in the following brain regions: the ventral periaqueductal gray, the central and lateral nuclei of the amygdala, and the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. In addition, analysis of functional brain networks using interregional CO activity correlations revealed different patterns of functional connectivity between fear acquisition and fear expression groups. In particular, a network comprising the ventral hippocampus and amygdala nuclei was found in the fear acquisition group, whereas a closed reciprocal dorsal hippocampal network was detected in the fear expression group. These results suggest that contextual fear acquisition and expression differ as regards to the brain networks involved, although they share common brain regions involved in fear, anxiety, and defensive behavior. PMID:22173014

  20. Arousal and Associative Processes in Reinstatement of Fear

    OpenAIRE

    Glenn, Daniel Erik

    2014-01-01

    This dissertation is a two-paper investigation of the basic associative and arousal-based processes involved in reinstatement of conditional fear. Clarifying the factors involved in reinstatement of fear--a behavioral phenomenon in which the experience of an aversive event following fear extinction produces a return of fear--provides a better understanding of the factors that contribute to the waxing and waning of untreated fear and the return of fear following exposure treatment. Shedding li...

  1. Equal pain—Unequal fear response: enhanced susceptibility of tooth pain to fear conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Michael L.; de Matos, Nuno M. P.; Brügger, Mike; Ettlin, Dominik A.; Lukic, Nenad; Cheetham, Marcus; Jäncke, Lutz; Lutz, Kai

    2014-01-01

    Experimental fear conditioning in humans is widely used as a model to investigate the neural basis of fear learning and to unravel the pathogenesis of anxiety disorders. It has been observed that fear conditioning depends on stimulus salience and subject vulnerability to fear. It is further known that the prevalence of dental-related fear and phobia is exceedingly high in the population. Dental phobia is unique as no other body part is associated with a specific phobia. Therefore, we hypothesized that painful dental stimuli exhibit an enhanced susceptibility to fear conditioning when comparing to equal perceived stimuli applied to other body sites. Differential susceptibility to pain-related fear was investigated by analyzing responses to an unconditioned stimulus (UCS) applied to the right maxillary canine (UCS-c) vs. the right tibia (UCS-t). For fear conditioning, UCS-c and USC-t consisted of painful electric stimuli, carefully matched at both application sites for equal intensity and quality perception. UCSs were paired to simple geometrical forms which served as conditioned stimuli (CS+). Unpaired CS+ were presented for eliciting and analyzing conditioned fear responses. Outcome parameter were (1) skin conductance changes and (2) time-dependent brain activity (BOLD responses) in fear-related brain regions such as the amygdala, anterior cingulate cortex, insula, thalamus, orbitofrontal cortex, and medial prefrontal cortex. A preferential susceptibility of dental pain to fear conditioning was observed, reflected by heightened skin conductance responses and enhanced time-dependent brain activity (BOLD responses) in the fear network. For the first time, this study demonstrates fear-related neurobiological mechanisms that point toward a superior conditionability of tooth pain. Beside traumatic dental experiences our results offer novel evidence that might explain the high prevalence of dental-related fears in the population. PMID:25100974

  2. Equal pain – Unequal fear response: Enhanced susceptibility of tooth pain to fear conditioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Lukas Meier

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Experimental fear conditioning in humans is widely used as a model to investigate the neural basis of fear learning and to unravel the pathogenesis of anxiety disorders. It has been observed that fear conditioning depends on stimulus salience and subject vulnerability to fear. It is further known that the prevalence of dental-related fear and phobia is exceedingly high in the population. Dental phobia is unique as no other body part is associated with a specific phobia. Therefore, we hypothesized that painful dental stimuli exhibit an enhanced susceptibility to fear conditioning when comparing to equal perceived stimuli applied to other body sites. Differential susceptibility to pain-related fear was investigated by analyzing responses to an unconditioned stimulus (UCS applied to the right maxillary canine (UCS-c versus the right tibia (UCS-t. For fear conditioning, UCS-c and USC-t consisted of painful electric stimuli, carefully matched at both application sites for equal intensity and quality perception. UCSs were paired to simple geometrical forms which served as conditioned stimuli (CS+. Unpaired CS+ were presented for eliciting and analyzing conditioned fear responses. Outcome parameter were 1 skin conductance changes and 2 time-dependent brain activity (BOLD responses in fear-related brain regions such as the amygdala, anterior cingulate cortex, insula, thalamus, orbitofrontal cortex and medial prefrontal cortex.A preferential susceptibility of dental pain to fear conditioning was observed, reflected by heightened skin conductance responses and enhanced time-dependent brain activity (BOLD responses in the fear network. For the first time, this study demonstrates fear-related neurobiological mechanisms that point towards a superior conditionability of tooth pain. Beside traumatic dental experiences our results offer novel evidence that might explain the high prevalence of dental-related fears in the population.

  3. European Union: fears and hopes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilles ROUET

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This contribution analyses some data from Eurobarometer 83, spring 2015, especially to draw a map of Fears. The European Union is a divided space and one of the main consequences of the budget (financial crisis of Greece, followed by the crisis caused by the arrival of thousands of immigrants is an enhanced communication difficulty between the Western and Eastern parts of the EU But all citizens have some new rights with the European Citizenship, which are additional. One of the main issues for the future could be to change the fundamental basis of the Union, thus trying to organize a new articulation between local and supranational, with another role for States, for example to change the organisation of European elections, and to pursue the connection of public spaces with mobility.

  4. Palliative care - fear and anxiety

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... pay attention, focus, or concentrate Loss of control Tense Your body may express what you are feeling ... Write down what you are feeling and thinking. Exercise. Talk to someone. To help you relax: Breathe ...

  5. Font size matters--emotion and attention in cortical responses to written words.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mareike Bayer

    Full Text Available For emotional pictures with fear-, disgust-, or sex-related contents, stimulus size has been shown to increase emotion effects in attention-related event-related potentials (ERPs, presumably reflecting the enhanced biological impact of larger emotion-inducing pictures. If this is true, size should not enhance emotion effects for written words with symbolic and acquired meaning. Here, we investigated ERP effects of font size for emotional and neutral words. While P1 and N1 amplitudes were not affected by emotion, the early posterior negativity started earlier and lasted longer for large relative to small words. These results suggest that emotion-driven facilitation of attention is not necessarily based on biological relevance, but might generalize to stimuli with arbitrary perceptual features. This finding points to the high relevance of written language in today's society as an important source of emotional meaning.

  6. Costs of fear: Behavioral and life-history responses to risk and their demographic consequences vary across species

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaManna, Joseph A.; Martin, Thomas E.

    2016-01-01

    Behavioural responses to reduce predation risk might cause demographic ‘costs of fear’. Costs differ among species, but a conceptual framework to understand this variation is lacking. We use a life-history framework to tie together diverse traits and life stages to better understand interspecific variation in responses and costs. We used natural and experimental variation in predation risk to test phenotypic responses and associated demographic costs for 10 songbird species. Responses such as increased parental attentiveness yielded reduced development time and created benefits such as reduced predation probability. Yet, responses to increased risk also created demographic costs by reducing offspring production in the absence of direct predation. This cost of fear varied widely across species, but predictably with the probability of repeat breeding. Use of a life-history framework can aid our understanding of potential demographic costs from predation, both from responses to perceived risk and from direct predation mortality.

  7. Internal focus of attention in anxiety-sensitive females up-regulates amygdale activity: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfleiderer, Bettina; Berse, Timo; Stroux, Daniel; Ewert, Adrianna; Konrad, Carsten; Gerlach, Alexander L

    2014-11-01

    Cognitive behavioral models of panic disorder (PD) stress the importance of an increased attentional focus towards bodily symptoms in the onset and maintenance of this debilitating anxiety disorder. In this fMRI mental tracking paradigm, we looked at the effects of focusing one's attention internally (interoception) vs. externally (exteroception) in a well-studied group at risk for PD-that is anxiety-sensitive females (AS-high). We hypothesized that AS-high subjects compared to control subjects will present higher arousal and decreased valence scores during interoception and parallel higher activity in brain areas which are associated with fear and interoception. 24 healthy female students with high levels of anxiety sensitivity and 24 healthy female students with normal levels of anxiety sensitivity serving as control group were investigated by 3 T fMRI. Subjects either focused their attention on their heartbeats (internal condition) or on neutral tones (external condition). Task performance was monitored by reporting the number of heartbeats or tones after each block. State of arousal and emotional valence were also assessed. The high anxiety-sensitive group reported higher arousal scores compared to controls during the course of the experiment. Simultaneously, fMRI results indicated higher activation in anxiety-sensitive participants than in controls during interoception in a network of cortical and subcortical brain regions (thalamus, amygdala, parahippocampus) that overlaps with known fear circuitry structures. In particular, the activity of the right amygdala was up-regulated. Future prospective-longitudinal studies are needed to validate the role of the amygdala for transition to disorder. Attention to internal body functions up-regulates the activity of interoceptive and fear-relevant brain regions in anxiety-sensitive females, a high-risk group for the development of anxiety disorders. PMID:24898851

  8. Attentional Control Buffers the Effect of Public Speaking Anxiety on Performance

    OpenAIRE

    Christopher R. Jones; Fazio, Russell H.; Vasey, Michael W.

    2011-01-01

    We explored dispositional differences in the ability to self-regulate attentional processes in the domain of public speaking. Participants first completed measures of speech anxiety and attentional control. In a second session, participants prepared and performed a short speech. Fear of public speaking negatively impacted performance only for those low in attentional control. Thus, attentional control appears to act as a buffer that facilitates successful self-regulation despite performance a...

  9. Attentional Control Buffers the Effect of Public Speaking Anxiety on Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Christopher R; Fazio, Russell H; Vasey, Michael W

    2012-09-01

    We explored dispositional differences in the ability to self-regulate attentional processes in the domain of public speaking. Participants first completed measures of speech anxiety and attentional control. In a second session, participants prepared and performed a short speech. Fear of public speaking negatively impacted performance only for those low in attentional control. Thus, attentional control appears to act as a buffer that facilitates successful self-regulation despite performance anxiety. PMID:22924093

  10. Fear and Reward Circuit Alterations in Pediatric CRPS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simons, Laura E; Erpelding, Nathalie; Hernandez, Jessica M; Serrano, Paul; Zhang, Kunyu; Lebel, Alyssa A; Sethna, Navil F; Berde, Charles B; Prabhu, Sanjay P; Becerra, Lino; Borsook, David

    2015-01-01

    In chronic pain, a number of brain regions involved in emotion (e.g., amygdala, hippocampus, nucleus accumbens, insula, anterior cingulate, and prefrontal cortex) show significant functional and morphometric changes. One phenotypic manifestation of these changes is pain-related fear (PRF). PRF is associated with profoundly altered behavioral adaptations to chronic pain. For example, patients with a neuropathic pain condition known as complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) often avoid use of and may even neglect the affected body area(s), thus maintaining and likely enhancing PRF. These changes form part of an overall maladaptation to chronic pain. To examine fear-related brain circuit alterations in humans, 20 pediatric patients with CRPS and 20 sex- and age-matched healthy controls underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in response to a well-established fearful faces paradigm. Despite no significant differences on self-reported emotional valence and arousal between the two groups, CRPS patients displayed a diminished response to fearful faces in regions associated with emotional processing compared to healthy controls. Additionally, increased PRF levels were associated with decreased activity in a number of brain regions including the right amygdala, insula, putamen, and caudate. Blunted activation in patients suggests that (a) individuals with chronic pain may have deficits in cognitive-affective brain circuits that may represent an underlying vulnerability or consequence to the chronic pain state; and (b) fear of pain may contribute and/or maintain these brain alterations. Our results shed new light on altered affective circuits in patients with chronic pain and identify PRF as a potentially important treatment target. PMID:26834606

  11. Fearful imagery induces hyperventilation and dyspnea in medically unexplained dyspnea

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HAN Jiang-na; ZHU Yuan-jue; LUO Dong-mei; LI Shun-wei; Ilse Van Diest; Omer Van den Bergh; Karel P Van de Woestijne

    2008-01-01

    Background Medically unexplained dyspnea refers to a condition characterized by a Sensation of dyspnea and is typically applied to patients presenting with anxiety and hyperventilation without underlying cardiopulmonary pathology. We were interested to know how anxiety triggers hyperventilation and elicits subjective Symptoms in those patients. Using an imagery paradigm, we investigated the role of fearful imagery in provoking hyperventilation and in eliciting Symptoms, specifically dyspnea.Methods Forty patients with medically unexplained dyspnea and 40 normal subjects matched for age and gender were exposed to scripts and asked to imagine both fearful and restful scenarios, while end-tidal PCO2 (PetCO2) and breathing frequency were recorded and subjective Symptoms evaluated. The subject who had PetCO2 falling more than 5 mmHg from baseline and persisting at this low level for more than 15 seconds in the imagination was regarded as a hyperventilation responder.Results In patients with medically unexplained dyspnea, imagination of fearful scenarios, being blocked in an elevator in particular, induced anxious feelings, and provoked a significant fall in PetCO2 (P<0.05). Breathing frequency tended to increase. Eighteen out of 40 patients were identified as hyperventilation responders compared to 5 out of 40 normal subjects (P<0.01). The patients reported Symptoms of dyspnea, palpitation or fast heart beat in the same fearful script imagery. Additionally, PetCO2 fall was significantly correlated with the intensity of dyspnea and palpitation experienced during the mental imagery on one hand, and with anxiety Symptoms on the other.Conclusions Fearful imagery provokes hyperventilation and induces subjective Symptoms of dyspnea and palpitation in patients with medically unexplained dyspnea.

  12. Representation of patients’ hand modulates fear reactions of patients with spider phobia in virtual reality

    OpenAIRE

    Peperkorn, Henrik M.; Diemer, Julia E.; Alpers, Georg W; Mühlberger, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Embodiment (i.e., the involvement of a bodily representation) is thought to be relevant in emotional experiences. Virtual reality (VR) is a capable means of activating phobic fear in patients. The representation of the patient’s body (e.g., the right hand) in VR enhances immersion and increases presence, but its effect on phobic fear is still unknown. We analyzed the influence of the presentation of the participant’s hand in VR on presence and fear responses in 32 women with spider phobia and...

  13. Risk perception, safety fears and health

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    There is significant evidence from a range of studies that fears of nuclear exposure or radiological threat may become associated with health preoccupations and potentially psychiatric disorders. These include somatisation, anxiety and depressive syndromes. There are findings from our own and others research that knowledge may lessen fear. Nevertheless, concerns exist despite recognition that radiotherapy and other use of radiation technology for investigation have significant benefits for health. These background vulnerabilities in terms of health fears, especially concerning cancer and potential genetic impacts will be reviewed. In current studies we have examined fears related to radiation and nuclear issues and a range of health variables and social capital. This paper will examine health issues in these non-exposed populations, and whether fear levels correlate with mental health, or other health related variables. The degree to which such fears may have been exacerbated by the nuclear incident in Japan, or other adverse disaster circumstances will be reviewed. The influence of fear per se, without exposure, may indicate pre-existing vulnerabilities and the degree to which resilience indicators may be protective. Findings relevant to prevention and management will be reviewed.

  14. Modeling fear-conditioned bradycardia in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castegnetti, Giuseppe; Tzovara, Athina; Staib, Matthias; Paulus, Philipp C; Hofer, Nicolas; Bach, Dominik R

    2016-06-01

    Across species, cued fear conditioning is a common experimental paradigm to investigate aversive Pavlovian learning. While fear-conditioned stimuli (CS+) elicit overt behavior in many mammals, this is not the case in humans. Typically, autonomic nervous system activity is used to quantify fear memory in humans, measured by skin conductance responses (SCR). Here, we investigate whether heart period responses (HPR) evoked by the CS, often observed in humans and small mammals, are suitable to complement SCR as an index of fear memory in humans. We analyze four datasets involving delay and trace conditioning, in which heart beats are identified via electrocardiogram or pulse oximetry, to show that fear-conditioned heart rate deceleration (bradycardia) is elicited and robustly distinguishes CS+ from CS-. We then develop a psychophysiological model (PsPM) of fear-conditioned HPR. This PsPM is inverted to yield estimates of autonomic input into the heart. We show that the sensitivity to distinguish CS+ and CS- (predictive validity) is higher for model-based estimates than peak-scoring analysis, and compare this with SCR. Our work provides a novel tool to investigate fear memory in humans that allows direct comparison between species. PMID:26950648

  15. Prefrontal NMDA receptors expressed in excitatory neurons control fear discrimination and fear extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, Philip A; Corches, Alex; Lovelace, Jonathan W; Westbrook, Kevin B; Mendoza, Michael; Korzus, Edward

    2015-03-01

    N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are critically involved in various learning mechanisms including modulation of fear memory, brain development and brain disorders. While NMDARs mediate opposite effects on medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) interneurons and excitatory neurons, NMDAR antagonists trigger profound cortical activation. The objectives of the present study were to determine the involvement of NMDARs expressed specifically in excitatory neurons in mPFC-dependent adaptive behaviors, specifically fear discrimination and fear extinction. To achieve this, we tested mice with locally deleted Grin1 gene encoding the obligatory NR1 subunit of the NMDAR from prefrontal CamKIIα positive neurons for their ability to distinguish frequency modulated (FM) tones in fear discrimination test. We demonstrated that NMDAR-dependent signaling in the mPFC is critical for effective fear discrimination following initial generalization of conditioned fear. While mice with deficient NMDARs in prefrontal excitatory neurons maintain normal responses to a dangerous fear-conditioned stimulus, they exhibit abnormal generalization decrement. These studies provide evidence that NMDAR-dependent neural signaling in the mPFC is a component of a neural mechanism for disambiguating the meaning of fear signals and supports discriminative fear learning by retaining proper gating information, viz. both dangerous and harmless cues. We also found that selective deletion of NMDARs from excitatory neurons in the mPFC leads to a deficit in fear extinction of auditory conditioned stimuli. These studies suggest that prefrontal NMDARs expressed in excitatory neurons are involved in adaptive behavior. PMID:25615540

  16. Gagging and Associations with Dental Care-Related Fear, Fear of Pain, and Beliefs about Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randall, Cameron L.; Shulman, Grant P.; Crout, Richard J.; McNeil, Daniel W.

    2014-01-01

    Background Gagging is a behavioral response that interferes with oral health care and has been suggested to relate to dental care-related fear. Little is known, however, about the epidemiology of gagging during dental treatment. Methods To explore this phenomenon, 478 participants were recruited from the waiting area of an oral diagnosis clinic. Participants completed the Dental Fear Survey, the Short Form-Fear of Pain Questionnaire, Dental Beliefs Scale, and a demographics questionnaire that included items about problems with gagging. Results Over half of the participants reported gagging on at least one occasion during dental visits, with 7.5% almost always, or always gagging. With higher frequency of problems with gagging, patients were more likely to have greater levels of dental care-related fear, fear of pain, and more negative beliefs of dental professionals and dental treatment. Further, participants who gagged more readily had greater dental care-related fear than other gaggers. Conclusion Gagging in the dental clinic is a prevalent problem, and dental care-related fear and fear of pain are associated with more frequent gagging. Clinical Implications Given the prevalence of patients reporting problem gagging, it may be helpful for providers to assess for this barrier to treatment. By targeting dental care-related fear, fear of pain, and negative beliefs about dental care in patients who often gag in the clinic, gagging may be reduced in frequency or intensity, potentially making treatment more comfortable for patients and easier for dental care providers. PMID:24789238

  17. Attention and Olfactory Consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Keller, Andreas

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the relation between attention and consciousness is an important part of our understanding of consciousness. Attention, unlike consciousness, can be systematically manipulated in psychophysical experiments and a law-like relation between attention and consciousness is waiting to be discovered. Most attempts to discover the nature of this relation are focused on a special type of attention: spatial visual attention. In this review I want to introduce another type of attention to ...

  18. Neural correlates of the mother-to-infant social transmission of fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Da-Jeong; Debiec, Jacek

    2016-06-01

    Although clinical and basic studies show that parental trauma, fear, and anxiety may be transmitted to offspring, the neurobiology of this transmission is still not well understood. We recently demonstrated in an animal model that infant rats acquire threat responses to a distinct cue when a mother expresses fear to this cue in their presence. This ability to acquire maternal fear through social learning is present at birth and, as we previously reported, depends on the pup's amygdala. However, the remaining neural mechanisms underlying social fear learning (SFL) in infancy remain elusive. Here, by using [(14) C]2-deoxyglucose autoradiography, we show that the mother-to-infant transmission of fear in preweaning rats is associated with a significant increase of activity in the subregions of the lateral septum, nucleus accumbens, bed nucleus of stria terminalis, retrosplenial cortex, paraventricular nucleus of the thalamus, mediodorsal and intralaminar thalamic nuclei, medial and the lateral preoptic nuclei of the hypothalamus, and the lateral periaqueductal gray. In contrast to studies of adult SFL demonstrating the role of the anterior cingulate cortex and possibly the insular cortex or research of infant classical fear conditioning showing the role of the posterior piriform cortex, no changes of activation in these areas were observed. Our results indicate that the pup's exposure to maternal fear activates a number of areas involved in processing threat, stress, or pain. This pattern of activation suggests a unique set of neural mechanisms underlying SFL in the developing brain. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27091313

  19. The hypocretin/orexin system mediates the extinction of fear memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores, África; Valls-Comamala, Victòria; Costa, Giulia; Saravia, Rocío; Maldonado, Rafael; Berrendero, Fernando

    2014-11-01

    Anxiety disorders are often associated with an inability to extinguish learned fear responses. The hypocretin/orexin system is involved in the regulation of emotional states and could also participate in the consolidation and extinction of aversive memories. Using hypocretin receptor-1 and hypocretin receptor-2 antagonists, hypocretin-1 and hypocretin-2 peptides, and hypocretin receptor-1 knockout mice, we investigated the role of the hypocretin system in cue- and context-dependent fear conditioning and extinction. Hypocretins were crucial for the consolidation of fear conditioning, and this effect was mainly observed in memories with a high emotional component. Notably, after the acquisition of fear memory, hypocretin receptor-1 blockade facilitated fear extinction, whereas hypocretin-1 administration impaired this extinction process. The extinction-facilitating effects of the hypocretin receptor-1 antagonist SB334867 were associated with increased expression of cFos in the basolateral amygdala and the infralimbic cortex. Intra-amygdala, but neither intra-infralimbic prefrontal cortex nor intra-dorsohippocampal infusion of SB334867 enhanced fear extinction. These results reveal a key role for hypocretins in the extinction of aversive memories and suggest that hypocretin receptor-1 blockade could represent a novel therapeutic target for the treatment of diseases associated with inappropriate retention of fear, such as post-traumatic stress disorder and phobias. PMID:24930888

  20. Associations among Context-Specific Maternal Protective Behavior, Toddler Fearful Temperament, and Maternal Accuracy and Goals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiel, Elizabeth J; Buss, Kristin A

    2012-11-01

    Maternal protective responses to temperamentally fearful toddlers have previously been found to relate to increased risk for children's development of anxiety-spectrum problems. Not all protective behavior is "overprotective," and not all mothers respond to toddlers' fear with protection. Therefore, the current study aimed to identify conditions under which an association between fearful temperament and protective maternal behavior occurs. Participants included 117 toddlers and their mothers, who were observed in a variety of laboratory tasks. Mothers predicted their toddlers' fear reactions in these tasks and reported the importance of parent-centered goals for their children's shyness. Protective behavior displayed in low-threat, but not high-threat, contexts related to concurrently observed fearful temperament and to mother-reported shy/inhibited behavior one year later. The relation between fearful temperament and protective behavior in low-threat, but not high-threat, contexts was strengthened by maternal accuracy in anticipating children's fear and maternal parent-centered goals for children's shyness. PMID:23226924

  1. TO FEAR OR NOT TO FEAR ON CYBERCRIME

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Bernik

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available To understand cybercrime and its various forms, one must be familiar with criminality in general. How individuals perceive crime, and how much they fear it is further influenced by news media (Crawford, 2007. Van Duyne (2009, who monitored criminality, wrote about changes which started to be noticed twenty years ago and have shaped a new Europe, a territory without inner borders, and so with more mobility and opportunities for the Europeans. But these novelties and changes in the way we work have also caused certain new problems. It can be said that perpetrators of crimes, who are no longer hindered by state borders, now know no geographical limitations. Vander Baken and Van Daele (2009, for example, have researched mobility in connection to transnational criminality. Von Lampe (2007 has established that perpetrators no longer act individually, but frequently work in cooperation with one another. Crime and mobility are being “greased” by money, and have become a part of everyday life (Van Duyne, 2009. An individual’s perception and understanding of criminality is also biased on certain cultural myths in regard to crime (Meško and Eman, 2009.

  2. Fear of crime in urban parks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maruthaveeran, Sreetheran; Konijnendijk, Cecil Cornelis

    2015-01-01

    -structured in-depth interviews. The interview consists of respondents from various age, gender and race. The results revealed universal similarities to other cultures on fear of crime in urban green spaces. This study has highlighted eight themes on the attributes which evoke fear among the residents of Kuala...... behaviour towards crime in urban parks but this was only observed among the women. This paper has also highlighted the implications on park planning and management from the comments given by the respondents. Though the aspect of fear towards crime in urban green spaces is not a major focus in Malaysia, this...

  3. Capture of exogenous attention modulates the attentional blink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Simon; Andersen, Tobias

    2011-01-01

    When two targets (T1 & T2) are presented in rapid succession, observers often fail to report T2 if they attend to T1. Bottleneck theories propose that this attentional blink (AB) is due to T1 occupying a slow processing stage when T2 is presented. Accordingly, if increasing T1 difficulty increases...... T1 processing time, this should cause a greater AB. Attention capture hypotheses suggest that T1 captures attention, which cannot be reallocated to T2 in time. Accordingly, if increasing T1 difficulty, decreases saliency, this should cause a smaller AB. Studies examining how T1 difficulty affects...... negatively with T1 contrast energy. Our results indicate that T1 capture modulates the AB. We suggest that this effect has confounded previous studies on the effect of T1 difficulty. In an electrophysiological version of the study we will further examine the implied relation between attention capture and the...

  4. Stereotype threat engenders neural attentional bias toward negative feedback to undermine performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Chad E; Leitner, Jordan B

    2014-10-01

    Stereotype threat, a situational pressure individuals experience when they fear confirming a negative group stereotype, engenders a cascade of physiological stress responses, negative appraisals, and performance monitoring processes that tax working memory resources necessary for optimal performance. Less is known, however, about how stereotype threat biases attentional processing in response to performance feedback, and how such attentional biases may undermine performance. Women received feedback on math problems in stereotype threatening compared to stereotype-neutral contexts while continuous EEG activity was recorded. Findings revealed that stereotype threatened women elicited larger midline P100 ERPs, increased phase locking between anterior cingulate cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (two regions integral for attentional processes), and increased power in left fusiform gyrus in response to negative feedback compared to positive feedback and women in stereotype-neutral contexts. Increased power in left fusiform gyrus in response to negative feedback predicted underperformance on the math task among stereotype threatened women only. Women in stereotype-neutral contexts exhibited the opposite trend. Findings suggest that in stereotype threatening contexts, neural networks integral for attention and working memory are biased toward negative, stereotype confirming feedback at very early speeds of information processing. This bias, in turn, plays a role in undermining performance. PMID:25063472

  5. Does major depressive disorder in parents predict specific fears and phobias in offspring?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biel, Matthew G; Klein, Rachel G; Mannuzza, Salvatore; Roizen, Erica R; Truong, Nhan L; Roberson-Nay, Roxann; Pine, Daniel S

    2008-01-01

    Evidence suggests a relationship between parental depression and phobias in offspring as well as links between childhood fears and risk for major depression. This study examines the relationship between major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety disorders in parents and specific fears and phobias in offspring. Three hundred and eighteen children of parents with lifetime MDD, anxiety disorder, MDD+anxiety disorder, or neither were psychiatrically assessed via parent interview. Rates of specific phobias in offspring did not differ significantly across parental groups. Specific fears were significantly elevated in offspring of parents with MDD+anxiety disorder relative to the other groups (MDD, anxiety disorder, and controls, which did not differ). We failed to find increased phobias in offspring of parents with MDD without anxiety disorder. Elevated rates of specific fears in offspring of parents with MDD+anxiety disorder may be a function of more severe parental psychopathology, increased genetic loading, or unmeasured environmental influences. PMID:17935207

  6. The Causal Impact of Fear of Unemployment on Psychological Health

    OpenAIRE

    Reichert, Arndt; Tauchmann, Harald

    2011-01-01

    We analyze the effect of job insecurity on psychological health. We extend the group of people being affected to employees who have insecure jobs to account for a broader measure of the mental health consequences of potential unemployment. Using panel data with staff reductions in the company as an exogenous source of job insecurity, we find that an increase in fear of unemployment substantially decreases the mental health status of employees. Quantile regression results yield particularly st...

  7. Individual Differences in Fear Potentiated Startle in Behaviorally Inhibited Children

    OpenAIRE

    Barker, Tyson V.; Reeb-Sutherland, Bethany; Fox, Nathan A.

    2013-01-01

    Behavioral inhibition (BI) is a temperament characterized during early childhood by increased fearfulness to novelty, social reticence to unfamiliar peers, and heightened risk for the development of anxiety. Heightened startle responses to safety cues have been found among behaviorally inhibited adolescents who have an anxiety disorder suggesting that this measure may serve as a biomarker for the development of anxiety amongst this risk population. However, it is unknown if these aberrant sta...

  8. Memory suppression trades prolonged fear and sleep-dependent fear plasticity for the avoidance of current fear

    OpenAIRE

    Kenichi Kuriyama; Motoyasu Honma; Takuya Yoshiike; Yoshiharu Kim

    2013-01-01

    Sleep deprivation immediately following an aversive event reduces fear by preventing memory consolidation during homeostatic sleep. This suggests that acute insomnia might act prophylactically against the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) even though it is also a possible risk factor for PTSD. We examined total sleep deprivation and memory suppression to evaluate the effects of these interventions on subsequent aversive memory formation and fear conditioning. Active suppress...

  9. Cardiac and Behavioral Evidence for Emotional Influences on Attention in 7-Month-Old Infants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leppanen, Jukka; Peltola, Mikko J.; Mantymaa, Mirjami; Koivuluoma, Mikko; Salminen, Anni; Puura, Kaija

    2010-01-01

    To examine the ontogeny of emotion-attention interactions, we investigated whether infants exhibit adult-like biases in automatic and voluntary attentional processes towards fearful facial expressions. Heart rate and saccadic eye movements were measured from 7-month-old infants (n = 42) while viewing non-face control stimuli, and neutral, happy,…

  10. Fear expression and return of fear following threat instruction with or without direct contingency experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mertens, Gaëtan; Kuhn, Manuel; Raes, An K; Kalisch, Raffael; De Houwer, Jan; Lonsdorf, Tina B

    2016-08-01

    Prior research showed that mere instructions about the contingency between a conditioned stimulus (CS) and an unconditioned stimulus (US) can generate fear reactions to the CS. Little is known, however, about the extent to which actual CS-US contingency experience adds anything beyond the effect of contingency instructions. Our results extend previous studies on this topic in that it included fear potentiated startle as an additional dependent variable and examined return of fear (ROF) following reinstatement. We observed that CS-US pairings can enhance fear reactions beyond the effect of contingency instructions. Moreover, for all measures of fear, instructions elicited immediate fear reactions that could not be completely overridden by subsequent situational safety information. Finally, ROF following reinstatement for instructed CS+s was unaffected by actual experience. In summary, our results demonstrate the power of contingency instructions and reveal the additional impact of actual experience of CS-US pairings. PMID:25966279

  11. Inhibition of spontaneous recovery of fear by mGluR5 after prolonged extinction training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Sheng-Chun; Chang, Chih-Hua; Wu, Chia-Chen; Orejarena, M Juliana; Orejanera, Maria Juliana; Manzoni, Olivier J; Gean, Po-Wu

    2013-01-01

    Fear behavior is vital for survival and involves learning contingent associations of non-threatening cues with aversive stimuli. In contrast, excessive levels of fear can be maladaptive and lead to anxiety disorders. Generally, extensive sessions of extinction training correlates with reduced spontaneous recovery. The molecular mechanisms underlying the long-term inhibition of fear recovery following repeated extinction training are not fully understood. Here we show that in rats, prolonged extinction training causes greater reduction in both fear-potentiated startle and spontaneous recovery. This effect was specifically blocked by metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5), but not by mGluR1 antagonists and by a protein synthesis inhibitor. Similar inhibition of memory recovery following prolonged extinction training was also observed in mice. In agreement with the instrumental role of mGluR5 in the prolonged inhibition of fear recovery, we found that FMR1-/- mice which exhibit enhanced mGluR5-mediated signaling exhibit lower spontaneous recovery of fear after extinction training than wild-type littermates. At the molecular level, we discovered that prolonged extinction training reversed the fear conditioning-induced increase in surface expression of GluR1, AMPA/NMDA ratio, postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95) and synapse-associated protein-97 (SAP97). Accordingly, delivery of Tat-GluR2(3Y), a synthetic peptide that blocks AMPA receptor endocytosis, inhibited prolonged extinction training-induced inhibition of fear recovery. Together, our results demonstrate that prolonged extinction training results in the mGluR5-dependent long-term inhibition of fear recovery. This effect may involve the degradation of original memory and may explain the beneficial effects of prolonged exposure therapy for the treatment of phobias. PMID:23555716

  12. Inhibition of spontaneous recovery of fear by mGluR5 after prolonged extinction training.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng-Chun Mao

    Full Text Available Fear behavior is vital for survival and involves learning contingent associations of non-threatening cues with aversive stimuli. In contrast, excessive levels of fear can be maladaptive and lead to anxiety disorders. Generally, extensive sessions of extinction training correlates with reduced spontaneous recovery. The molecular mechanisms underlying the long-term inhibition of fear recovery following repeated extinction training are not fully understood. Here we show that in rats, prolonged extinction training causes greater reduction in both fear-potentiated startle and spontaneous recovery. This effect was specifically blocked by metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5, but not by mGluR1 antagonists and by a protein synthesis inhibitor. Similar inhibition of memory recovery following prolonged extinction training was also observed in mice. In agreement with the instrumental role of mGluR5 in the prolonged inhibition of fear recovery, we found that FMR1-/- mice which exhibit enhanced mGluR5-mediated signaling exhibit lower spontaneous recovery of fear after extinction training than wild-type littermates. At the molecular level, we discovered that prolonged extinction training reversed the fear conditioning-induced increase in surface expression of GluR1, AMPA/NMDA ratio, postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95 and synapse-associated protein-97 (SAP97. Accordingly, delivery of Tat-GluR2(3Y, a synthetic peptide that blocks AMPA receptor endocytosis, inhibited prolonged extinction training-induced inhibition of fear recovery. Together, our results demonstrate that prolonged extinction training results in the mGluR5-dependent long-term inhibition of fear recovery. This effect may involve the degradation of original memory and may explain the beneficial effects of prolonged exposure therapy for the treatment of phobias.

  13. Generalization of Conditioned Fear-Potentiated Startle in Humans: Experimental Validation and Clinical Relevance

    OpenAIRE

    Lissek, Shmuel; Biggs, Arter L.; Rabin, Stephanie J.; Cornwell, Brian R.; Ruben P Alvarez; Pine, Daniel S.; Grillon, Christian

    2008-01-01

    Though generalization of conditioned fear has been implicated as a central feature of pathological anxiety, surprisingly little is known about the psychobiology of this learning phenomenon in humans. Whereas animal work has frequently applied methods to examine generalization gradients to study the gradual weakening of the conditioned-fear response as the test stimulus increasingly differs from the conditioned stimulus (CS), to our knowledge no psychobiological studies of such gradients have ...

  14. Nicotinic Receptors in the Dorsal and Ventral Hippocampus Differentially Modulate Contextual Fear Conditioning

    OpenAIRE

    Kenney, Justin W.; Raybuck, Jonathan D.; Gould, Thomas J.

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine administration alters various forms of hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. Increasing work has found that the dorsal and ventral hippocampus differentially contribute to multiple behaviors. Thus, the present study examined whether the effects of nicotine in the dorsal and ventral hippocampus have distinct influences on contextual fear learning in male C57BL/6J mice. Direct infusion of nicotine into the dorsal hippocampus resulted in an enhancement of contextual fear learning, ...

  15. Dental fear and anxiety in children and adolescents - A qualitative study using social media

    OpenAIRE

    Gao, Xiaoli; Hamzah, SH; Yiu, Cynthia Kar Yung; McGrath, Colman; King, Nigel M.

    2013-01-01

    Background Dental fear and anxiety (DFA) refers to the fear of and anxiety towards going to the dentist. It exists in a considerable proportion of children and adolescents and is a major dilemma in pediatric dental practice. As an Internet social medium with increasing popularity, the video-sharing website YouTube offers a useful data source for understanding health behaviors and perceptions of the public. Objective Using YouTube as a platform, this qualitative study aimed to examine the mani...

  16. The Development of Skin Conductance Fear Conditioning in Children from Ages 3 to 8 Years

    OpenAIRE

    Gao, Yu; Raine, Adrian; Venables, Peter H.; Dawson, Michael E.; Mednick, Sarnoff A.

    2010-01-01

    Although fear conditioning is an important psychological construct implicated in behavioral and emotional problems little is known about how it develops in early childhood. Using a differential, partial reinforcement conditioning paradigm, this longitudinal study assessed skin conductance conditioned responses in 200 children at ages 3, 4, 5, 6, and 8 years. Results demonstrated that in both boys and girls: (1) fear conditioning increased across age, particularly from ages 5 to 6 years, (2) t...

  17. Effects of sleep on memory for conditioned fear and fear extinction

    OpenAIRE

    Pace-Schott, Edward F.; Germain, Anne; Milad, Mohammed R

    2015-01-01

    Learning and memory for extinction of conditioned fear is a basic mammalian mechanism for regulating negative emotion. Sleep promotes both the consolidation of memory and the regulation of emotion. Sleep can influence consolidation and modification of memories associated with both fear and its extinction. After brief overviews of the behavior and neural circuitry associated with fear conditioning, extinction learning and extinction memory in the rodent and human, interactions of sleep with th...

  18. Fear Assessment: Cost-Benefit Analysis and the Pricing of Fear and Anxiety

    OpenAIRE

    Adler, Matthew D.

    2003-01-01

    "Risk assessment" is now a common feature of regulatory practice, but "fear assessment" is not.In particular, environmental, health and safety agencies such as EPA, FDA, OSHA, NHTSA, and CPSC, commonly count death, illness and injury as "costs" for purposes of cost-benefit analysis, but almost never incorporate fear, anxiety or other welfare-reducing mental states into the analysis.This is puzzling, since fear and anxiety are welfare setbacks, and since the very hazards regulated by these age...

  19. The history of nuclear fear

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The history of military and civilian nuclear energy is not only a matter of hard technology, politics, and economics. Our thinking about bombs and reactors is also affected by images with a curious and sometimes overwhelming power. Weird rays that can transform flesh or create monsters, the atom-powered marvels of a future uptopia, the mad scientist who plots to destroy the world: all have an influence on the way people think. Already decades before scientists had discovered how to exploit nuclear energy, a web of interconnected symbols was fully formed in the public mind. These images can be traced back to primitive imagery and, still deeper, into common human experiences, but they were often connected specifically to nuclear energy by nuclear scientists themselves. After the actual development of nuclear technology, a variety of groups used the old symbolism for their propaganda. Since nuclear energy was the most impressive case of the application of the arcane mysteries of science by modern technological authorities, it came to stand for all that people hoped, and still more what they feared, from such authorities

  20. Psychology: Fear and hope in climate messages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Paul C.

    2012-08-01

    Scientists often expect fear of climate change and its impacts to motivate public support of climate policies. A study suggests that climate change deniers don't respond to this, but that positive appeals can change their views.

  1. Part 2: Fear of contagion, fear of intimacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botnick, M R

    2000-01-01

    In this second part of the trilogy, I review the concepts of panic, the Theory of Cognitive Dissonance, and how internally inconsistent opinions and attitudes can be made consistent (or consonant). The theory explains, in some measure, how AIDS has been socialized into our thinking about identity, and goes beyond a medical condition. The pervasive identification of gay men with HIV and AIDS has resulted for many in an over-identification with fears of contagion and on a societal level in a fear of all gays as pools of contagion. The conversion of dissonance to consonance has taken many forms; within the gay community it has resulted in the rejection of the "100% safe-100% of the time" safe-sex message, and the adoption (for many) of a new form of deviant label-someone who is not in conformity with the social norm of gay community sexual behavior. However, we shall see that this so-called norm is a sham-that many gay men do not, as a rule, practice safe(r) sex on a consistent basis. This information indicates that the educational efforts of the last decade have at best lost their potency, and at worst were less than efficacious to begin with. The dissonant messages have also informed both the construction of the gay community and its interpretation of what it means to be gay. The result has been a tri-lateral perception of HIV and AIDS as either a medical, political or a social phenomenon. This fragmented understanding has exacerbated the already polarized ASOs and GSOs in that each has determined its ideology based on a particular interpretation of HIV and AIDS. This polarization has been operationalized by the GSOs and ASOs primarily in the manner by which they define their target markets, and more importantly, in the manner by which they exclude certain gays from participation. At the extreme, some gay men feel entirely left out of the community, and are consequently unable to convert their dissonance regarding being gay into consonance, if only by developing

  2. Augmenting one-session treatment of children's specific phobias with attention training to positive stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waters, Allison M; Farrell, Lara J; Zimmer-Gembeck, Melanie J; Milliner, Ella; Tiralongo, Evelin; Donovan, Caroline L; McConnell, Harry; Bradley, Brendan P; Mogg, Karin; Ollendick, Thomas H

    2014-11-01

    This study examined the efficacy of combining two promising approaches to treating children's specific phobias, namely attention training and one 3-h session of exposure therapy ('one-session treatment', OST). Attention training towards positive stimuli (ATP) and OST (ATP+OST) was expected to have more positive effects on implicit and explicit cognitive mechanisms and clinical outcome measures than an attention training control (ATC) condition plus OST (ATC+OST). Thirty-seven children (6-17 years) with a specific phobia were randomly assigned to ATP+OST or ATC+OST. In ATP+OST, children completed 160 trials of attention training responding to a probe that always followed the happy face in happy-angry face pairs. In ATC+OST, the probe appeared equally often after angry and happy faces. In the same session, children completed OST targeting their phobic situation/object. Clinical outcomes included clinician, parent and child report measures. Cognitive outcomes were assessed in terms of change in attention bias to happy and angry faces and in danger and coping expectancies. Assessments were completed before and after treatment and three-months later. Compared to ATC+OST, the ATP+OST condition produced (a) significantly greater reductions in children's danger expectancies about their feared situations/object during the OST and at three-month follow-up, and (b) significantly improved attention bias towards positive stimuli at post-treatment, which in turn, predicted a lower level of clinician-rated phobia diagnostic severity three-months after treatment. There were no significant differences between ATP+OST and ATC+OST conditions in clinician, parent, or child-rated clinical outcomes. Training children with phobias to focus on positive stimuli is effective in increasing attention towards positive stimuli and reducing danger expectancy biases. Studies with larger sample sizes and a stronger 'dose' of ATP prior to the OST may reveal promising outcomes on clinical measures

  3. Social Factors That Predict Fear of Academic Success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gore, Jonathan S.; Thomas, Jessica; Jones, Stevy; Mahoney, Lauren; Dukes, Kristina; Treadway, Jodi

    2016-01-01

    Fear of academic success is ultimately a fear of social exclusion. Therefore, various forms of social inclusion may alleviate this fear. Three studies tested the hypothesis that social inclusion variables negatively predict fear of success. In Study 1, middle and high school students (n = 129) completed surveys of parental involvement, parental…

  4. Recent fear is resistant to extinction

    OpenAIRE

    Maren, Stephen; Chang, Chun-hui

    2006-01-01

    In some individuals, fearful experiences (e.g., combat) yield persistent and debilitating psychological disturbances, including posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Early intervention (e.g., debriefing) after psychological trauma is widely practiced and argued to be an effective strategy for limiting subsequent psychopathology, although there has been considerable debate on this point. Here we show in an animal model of traumatic fear that early intervention shortly after an aversive experie...

  5. Fear of Floating and Social Welfare

    OpenAIRE

    Demosthenes N. Tambakis

    2007-01-01

    This paper studies the welfare implications of financial stability and inflation stabilization as distinct monetary policy objectives. Introducing asymmetric aversion to exchange rate depreciation in the Barro-Gordon model mitigates inflation bias due to credibility problems. The net welfare impact of fear of floating depends on the economy's recent track record, the credibility of monetary policy, and the central bank's discount factor. It is shown that fear of floating is more appropriate f...

  6. Individual differences in recovery from traumatic fear

    OpenAIRE

    Holmes, Andrew; Singewald, Nicolas

    2012-01-01

    Although exposure to major psychological trauma is unfortunately common, risk for related neuropsychiatric conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), varies greatly among individuals. Fear extinction offers a tractable and translatable behavioral readout of individual differences in learned recovery from trauma. Studies in rodent substrains and subpopulations are providing new insights into neural system dysfunctions associated with impaired fear extinction. Rapid progress is ...

  7. Olfactory instruction for fear: neural system analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Newton Sabino Canteras

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Studies using cat odor have led to detailed mapping of neural sites engaged in innate and contextual fear responses. Here, we reviewed three lines of work examining the dynamics of the neural systems that organize innate and learned fear responses to cat odor. In the first, we explored the neural systems involved in innate fear responses and in the different stages of fear conditioning to cat odor (i.e., acquisition and expression, with a particular emphasis on the role of the dorsal premammillary nucleus (PMd and the dorsolateral periaqueductal gray (PAGdl as key sites that influence innate and contextual conditioning. In the second line of studies, we reviewed how chemical stimulation of these sites (i.e., the PMd and PAGdl may serve as a useful unconditioned stimulus in an olfactory fear conditioning paradigm; these experiments provide an interesting perspective for the understanding of learned fear to predator odor. Finally, in the third line of studies, we explored the fact that neutral odors that acquire an aversive valence in a shock-paired conditioning paradigm may mimic predator odor and mobilize elements of the hypothalamic predator-responsive circuit.

  8. Energy, Ecology and Psychology of Fear

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The fear of highly industrialized societies from industrial and technological systems, from power plants is partially founded on rational reasons and partially on irrational which can be characterized as antitechnological and antiindustrial paranoia. The fear from nuclear accidents, disease and death, which are impossible to run away from, could be characterised as a fear and stress of living and working in complex and highly technological system the man is alienated from. The fear from air pollution and intoxicated environment, nuclear power plants, coal, that can cause biological dying and extinction must and can become subject of rational and objective analysis. The prediction of the near future climate and anxiety about our planet in the near future have to be separated from predicting the far future climate. The human technique and the anthropogenic sources are major factors of the near future climate (next few hundred years), but the far future climate (0000 years) of our planet is determined by long-term variations in the earth's orbital parameters; eccentricity of ellipse, precession and tilt, and the long term process on the Sun. The irrational fear from power plants and industry beside the rational and logical fear could be sublimated and directed toward the full control of technique dealing with the nature and environment, creating acceptable international laws for sustainable development. (author)

  9. In the vicious circle of fear

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fear is the great driving force, the basic effect, without which there would be no adaption to new living conditions, and no provision for the future. But fear has a positive influence only as long as it does not gain the upper hand, for then it makes human beings blind and stifles activity. What is important, and will remain so, is the equilibrium between fear and courage, caution and the desire for action, optimism und pessimism. This equilibrium has now been disturbed in the western countries - and only here. Our present fears give rise to hardly any positive measures, but prevent provision for the future. We are threatened with failure due to the manipulated conversion of fear from the maintenance of life to an effect which destroys life. In this way we got into a vicious circle of fear: we must try to weaken the imagined dangers by emphasising the true conditions. The author discusses how the viscious circle can be broken. (orig.) 891 UA/orig. 892 MKO

  10. Multimodal assessment of long-term memory recall and reinstatement in a combined cue and context fear conditioning and extinction paradigm in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Haaker

    Full Text Available Learning to predict danger via associative learning processes is critical for adaptive behaviour. After successful extinction, persisting fear memories often emerge as returning fear. Investigation of return of fear phenomena, e.g. reinstatement, have only recently began and to date, many critical questions with respect to reinstatement in human populations remain unresolved. Few studies have separated experimental phases in time even though increasing evidence shows that allowing for passage of time (and consolidation between experimental phases has a major impact on the results. In addition, studies have relied on a single psychophysiological dimension only (SCRs/SCL or FPS which hampers comparability between different studies that showed both differential or generalized return of fear following a reinstatement manipulation. In 93 participants, we used a multimodal approach (fear-potentiated startle, skin conductance responses, fear ratings to asses fear conditioning (day 1, extinction (day 2 as well as delayed memory recall and reinstatement (day 8 in a paradigm that probed contextual and cued fear intra-individually. Our findings show persistence of conditioning and extinction memory over time and demonstrate that reinstated fear responses were qualitatively different between dependent variables (subjective fear ratings, FPS, SCRs as well as between cued and contextual CSs. While only the arousal-related measurement (SCRs showed increasing reactions following reinstatement to the cued CSs, no evidence of reinstatement was observed for the subjective ratings and fear-related measurement (FPS. In contrast, for contextual CSs, reinstatement was evident as differential and generalized reinstatement in fear ratings as well as generally elevated physiological fear (FPS and arousal (SCRs related measurements to all contextual CSs (generalized non-differential reinstatement. Returning fear after reinstatement likely depends on a variety of variables

  11. Comparison of work-related fear-avoidance beliefs across different anatomical locations with musculoskeletal pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon CB

    2011-09-01

    and function for certain anatomical locations.Conclusion: These findings suggest that work-related fear-avoidance is similar for patients experiencing musculoskeletal pain. However, associations between work-related fear-avoidance and clinical outcomes may differ based on the anatomical location of that pain. Further, increased work-related fear-avoidance may not be indicative of poor clinical outcomes for this type of patient population.Keywords: gender, fear, avoidance, spine pain, pain intensity, function, musculoskeletal

  12. 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine facilitates fear extinction learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, M B; Andero, R; Ressler, K J; Howell, L L

    2015-01-01

    Acutely administered 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, 'ecstasy') has been proposed to have long-term positive effects on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms when combined with psychotherapy. No preclinical data support a mechanistic basis for these claims. Given the persistent nature of psychotherapeutic gains facilitated by MDMA, we hypothesized that MDMA improves fear extinction learning, a key process in exposure-based therapies for PTSD. In these experiments, mice were first exposed to cued fear conditioning and treated with drug vehicle or MDMA before extinction training 2 days later. MDMA was administered systemically and also directly targeted to brain structures known to contribute to extinction. In addition to behavioral measures of extinction, changes in mRNA levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf) and Fos were measured after MDMA treatment and extinction. MDMA (7.8 mg kg(-1)) persistently and robustly enhanced long-term extinction when administered before extinction training. MDMA increased the expression of Fos in the amygdala and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), whereas increases in Bdnf expression were observed only in the amygdala after extinction training. Extinction enhancements were recapitulated when MDMA (1 μg) was infused directly into the basolateral complex of the amygdala (BLA), and enhancement was abolished when BDNF signaling was inhibited before extinction. These findings suggest that MDMA enhances fear memory extinction through a BDNF-dependent mechanism, and that MDMA may be a useful adjunct to exposure-based therapies for PTSD and other anxiety disorders characterized by altered fear learning. PMID:26371762

  13. Fear and panic in humans with bilateral amygdala damage

    OpenAIRE

    Feinstein, Justin S.; Buzza, Colin; Hurlemann, Rene; Follmer, Robin L.; Dahdaleh, Nader S.; Coryell, William H.; Welsh, Michael J.; Tranel, Daniel; Wemmie, John A.

    2013-01-01

    Decades of research have highlighted the amygdala’s influential role in fear. Surprisingly, we found that inhalation of 35% CO2 evoked not only fear, but also panic attacks, in three rare patients with bilateral amygdala damage. These results indicate that the amygdala is not required for fear and panic, and make an important distinction between fear triggered by external threats from the environment versus fear triggered internally by CO2.

  14. Molecular Specificity of Multiple Hippocampal Processes Governing Fear Extinction

    OpenAIRE

    Radulovic, Jelena; Tronson, Natalie C

    2010-01-01

    Over many years, fear extinction has been conceptualized as one dominant process, new inhibitory learning, which serves to dampen previously acquired fear. Here we present an alternative view, that brain region-specific processing of representations, expectations and emotional attributes of the fear-provoking event, recruits unique mechanisms that interdependently contribute to the conditioning and extinction of fear. The co-occurrence of these mechanisms within the fear circuit can thus be t...

  15. Dopamine Regulation of Amygdala Inhibitory Circuits for Expression of Learned Fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwon, Oh-Bin; Lee, Joo Han; Kim, Hyun Jin; Lee, Seungho; Lee, Sanghyeon; Jeong, Min-Jae; Kim, Su-Jeong; Jo, Hee-Jung; Ko, Bumjin; Chang, Sunghoe; Park, Sang Ki; Choi, Yun-Beom; Bailey, Craig H; Kandel, Eric R; Kim, Joung-Hun

    2015-10-21

    GABAergic signaling in the amygdala controls learned fear, and its dysfunction potentially contributes to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We find that sub-threshold fear conditioning leads to dopamine receptor D4-dependent long-term depression (LTD) of glutamatergic excitatory synapses by increasing inhibitory inputs onto neurons of the dorsal intercalated cell mass (ITC) in the amygdala. Pharmacological, genetic, and optogenetic manipulations of the amygdala regions centered on the dorsal ITC reveal that this LTD limits less salient experiences from forming persistent memories. In further support of the idea that LTD has preventive and discriminative roles, we find that LTD at the dorsal ITC is impaired in mice exhibiting PTSD-like behaviors. These findings reveal a novel role of inhibitory circuits in the amygdala, which serves to dampen and restrict the level of fear expression. This mechanism is interfered with by stimuli that give rise to PTSD and may also be recruited for fear-related psychiatric diseases. PMID:26412489

  16. Fear of memories: the nature of panic in posttraumatic stress disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy Joscelyne

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Although there is increasing evidence that panic attacks are common in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD, little is known if posttraumatic panic is comparable to panic attacks observed in panic disorder (PD. Objective: This study examined the cognitive responses to panic attacks in participants with PD and PTSD. Method: Participants with PD (n=22 and PTSD (n=18 were assessed on the Anxiety Disorder Interview Schedule for DSM-IV and subsequently administered the Agoraphobic Cognitions Questionnaire and a measure of fears related to trauma memories. Results: Although participants did not differ in terms of catastrophic appraisals about somatic sensations, PTSD participants were more likely to experience fears about trauma memories and being harmed by trauma again during their panic attacks than PD participants. Conclusions: These findings suggest that although PTSD participants fear somatic outcomes during panic attacks, their panic attacks are distinguished by a marked fear of trauma memories.

  17. Working memory and fear conditioning

    OpenAIRE

    Carter, Ronald McKell; Hofstötter, Constanze; Tsuchiya, Naotsugu; Koch, Christof

    2003-01-01

    Previous studies of associative learning implicate higher-level cognitive processes in some forms of classical conditioning. An ongoing debate is concerned with the extent to which attention and awareness are necessary for trace but not delay eye-blink conditioning [Clark, R. E. & Squire, L. R. (1998) Science 280, 77-81; Lovibond, P. F. & Shanks, D. (2002) J. Exp. Psychol. Anim. Behav. Processes 28, 38-42]. In trace conditioning, a short interval is interposed between the termination of the c...

  18. Attention decay in science

    CERN Document Server

    Parolo, Pietro Della Briotta; Ghosh, Rumi; Huberman, Bernardo A; Kaski, Kimmo; Fortunato, Santo

    2015-01-01

    The exponential growth in the number of scientific papers makes it increasingly difficult for researchers to keep track of all the publications relevant to their work. Consequently, the attention that can be devoted to individual papers, measured by their citation counts, is bound to decay rapidly. In this work we make a thorough study of the life-cycle of papers in different disciplines. Typically, the citation rate of a paper increases up to a few years after its publication, reaches a peak and then decreases rapidly. This decay can be described by an exponential or a power law behavior, as in ultradiffusive processes, with exponential fitting better than power law for the majority of cases. The decay is also becoming faster over the years, signaling that nowadays papers are forgotten more quickly. However, when time is counted in terms of the number of published papers, the rate of decay of citations is fairly independent of the period considered. This indicates that the attention of scholars depends on th...

  19. Ever-present threats from information technology: the Cyber-Paranoia and Fear Scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Oliver J; Stevenson, Caroline; Freedman, Fleur

    2014-01-01

    Delusions involving technology, and specifically the internet, are increasingly common, and fear-reality statistics suggest computer-related fears are very widespread. These fears form a continuum from the widely understandable and realistic to the unrealistic, and frankly paranoid. The present study investigated the validity of this construct in a non-clinical population by constructing a novel self-report measure. The new Cyber-Paranoia and Fear Scale aims to measure the perception of information technology-related threats originating from or enabled by computers, smartphones, social networks, and digital surveillance. Psychometric properties of the new Cyber-Paranoia and Fear Scale are reported alongside an established measure of suspiciousness and paranoia in 181 participants including a sub-group of fifty information technology professionals. Exploratory factor analysis suggested the presence of two, related, dimensions that we term cyber-paranoia and cyber-fear. Both sub-scales were internally consistent and produced a normal distribution of scores. The relationships of the sub-scales with age, gender, trait paranoia, digital literacy, and digital inclusion are supportive of construct validity. The distinctiveness of 'cyber-paranoia' from general trait paranoia appears to mirror the clinical distinctiveness of 'internet' and other technology-fuelled delusions. Knowledge provision to increase technological proficiency and awareness may bring about a reduction in cyber-paranoia. PMID:25505431

  20. Assessment of Attention in Preschoolers

    OpenAIRE

    Mahone, E.M.; Schneider, H.E.

    2012-01-01

    In the past two decades, there has been an increased interest in the assessment and treatment of preschool children presenting with concerns about attention problems. This article reviews the research and clinical literature involving assessment of attention and related skills in the preschool years. While inattention among preschoolers is common, symptoms alone do not necessarily indicate a disorder, and most often represent a normal variation in typical preschool child development. Thus, ac...

  1. Colonoscopy, pain and fears: Is it an indissoluble trinomial?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trevisani, Lucio; Zelante, Angelo; Sartori, Sergio

    2014-06-16

    Colonoscopy is the reference method in the secondary prevention, diagnosis and, in some cases, treatment of colorectal cancer. It can often cause pain associated with embarrassment, anxiety, and physical and emotional discomfort. Pain intensity is influenced by a lot of factors, and there is a strict relationship among pain, pain perception, and mind. Several methods can be used to break the trinomial colonoscopy, pain and fear. Sedoanalgesia is recommended by several guidelines. If no sedation is offered, the patient must accept a higher chance of unacceptable discomfort and the endoscopist a lower chance of completing the procedure because of patient discomfort. Other non-pharmacologic methods such as acupuncture, music, and hydrocolonoscopy can be used as alternatives to pharmacologic sedoanalgesia. Furthermore, new endoscopic technologies such as variable-stiffness colonoscopes and ultrathin colonoscopes, or the use of carbon dioxide instead of air for colon insufflation, can reduce the pain caused by colonoscopy. In the future, technical improvements such as wireless capsules or robotic probes, will probably enable to overcome the present concept of colonoscopy, avoiding the use of traditional endoscopes. However, at present the poor attention paid by endoscopists to the pain and discomfort caused by colonoscopy can not be justified. There are several methods to reduce pain and anxiety and to break the trinomial colonoscopy, pain and fear. We must use them. PMID:24932374

  2. Prefrontal neuronal assemblies temporally control fear behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Cyril; Courtin, Julien; Karalis, Nikolaos; Chaudun, Fabrice; Wurtz, Hélène; Bienvenu, Thomas C M; Herry, Cyril

    2016-07-21

    Precise spike timing through the coordination and synchronization of neuronal assemblies is an efficient and flexible coding mechanism for sensory and cognitive processing. In cortical and subcortical areas, the formation of cell assemblies critically depends on neuronal oscillations, which can precisely control the timing of spiking activity. Whereas this form of coding has been described for sensory processing and spatial learning, its role in encoding emotional behaviour remains unknown. Fear behaviour relies on the activation of distributed structures, among which the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC) is known to be critical for fear memory expression. In the dmPFC, the phasic activation of neurons to threat-predicting cues, a spike-rate coding mechanism, correlates with conditioned fear responses and supports the discrimination between aversive and neutral stimuli. However, this mechanism does not account for freezing observed outside stimuli presentations, and the contribution of a general spike-time coding mechanism for freezing in the dmPFC remains to be established. Here we use a combination of single-unit and local field potential recordings along with optogenetic manipulations to show that, in the dmPFC, expression of conditioned fear is causally related to the organization of neurons into functional assemblies. During fear behaviour, the development of 4 Hz oscillations coincides with the activation of assemblies nested in the ascending phase of the oscillation. The selective optogenetic inhibition of dmPFC neurons during the ascending or descending phases of this oscillation blocks and promotes conditioned fear responses, respectively. These results identify a novel phase-specific coding mechanism, which dynamically regulates the development of dmPFC assemblies to control the precise timing of fear responses. PMID:27409809

  3. Zinc Transporter 3 Is Involved in Learned Fear and Extinction, but Not in Innate Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martel, Guillaume; Hevi, Charles; Friebely, Olivia; Baybutt, Trevor; Shumyatsky, Gleb P.

    2010-01-01

    Synaptically released Zn[superscript 2+] is a potential modulator of neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity in fear-conditioning pathways. Zinc transporter 3 (ZnT3) knock-out (KO) mice are well suited to test the role of zinc in learned fear, because ZnT3 is colocalized with synaptic zinc, responsible for its transport to synaptic vesicles,…

  4. Attention Mosaics: Studies of Organizational Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Carvalho de Mesquita Ferreira, Luciana

    2010-01-01

    textabstractOrganizational studies emphasizing the role of attention in organizational behavior depart from the idea that organizations, like individuals, have limited capacity to attend to environmental stimuli. The bounded capacity of the organizations to respond to stimuli is conditioned by the limited cognitions of individuals and by the limited capability of organizations to distribute, coordinate and integrate those cognitions. The cross-level nature of organizational attention, its dua...

  5. Developmental precursors of social brain networks: the emergence of attentional and cortical sensitivity to facial expressions in 5 to 7 months old infants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yrttiaho, Santeri; Forssman, Linda; Kaatiala, Jussi; Leppänen, Jukka M

    2014-01-01

    Biases in attention towards facial cues during infancy may have an important role in the development of social brain networks. The current study used a longitudinal design to examine the stability of infants' attentional biases towards facial expressions and to elucidate how these biases relate to emerging cortical sensitivity to facial expressions. Event-related potential (ERP) and attention disengagement data were acquired in response to the presentation of fearful, happy, neutral, and phase-scrambled face stimuli from the same infants at 5 and 7 months of age. The tendency to disengage from faces was highly consistent across both ages. However, the modulation of this behavior by fearful facial expressions was uncorrelated between 5 and 7 months. In the ERP data, fear-sensitive activity was observed over posterior scalp regions, starting at the latency of the N290 wave. The scalp distribution of this sensitivity to fear in ERPs was dissociable from the topography of face-sensitive modulation within the same latency range. While attentional bias scores were independent of co-registered ERPs, attention bias towards fearful faces at 5 months of age predicted the fear-sensitivity in ERPs at 7 months of age. The current results suggest that the attention bias towards fear could be involved in the developmental tuning of cortical networks for social signals of emotion. PMID:24968161

  6. Fears of Children in the United States: An Examination of the American Fear Survey Schedule with 20 New Contemporary Fear Items

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnham, Joy J.

    2005-01-01

    Twenty contemporary fears (e.g., terrorist attacks, drive-by shootings, having to fight in a war) were added to E. Gullone and N. J. King's (1992) Australian Fear Survey Schedule for Children-II for use in the United States. The revised survey, the American Fear Survey Schedule for Children (J. J. Burnham, 1995), was investigated. The component…

  7. Understanding Attention Deficit Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villegas, Orlando; And Others

    This booklet provides basic information regarding attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD), in their separate modalities, with hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention. Explanations are offered concerning short attention span, impulsive behavior, hyperactivity, and beginning new activities before completing the previous one. Theories…

  8. An Overview of Translationally Informed Treatments for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Animal Models of Pavlovian Fear Conditioning to Human Clinical Trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowers, Mallory E; Ressler, Kerry J

    2015-09-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder manifests after exposure to a traumatic event and is characterized by avoidance/numbing, intrusive symptoms and flashbacks, mood and cognitive disruptions, and hyperarousal/reactivity symptoms. These symptoms reflect dysregulation of the fear system likely caused by poor fear inhibition/extinction, increased generalization, and/or enhanced consolidation or acquisition of fear. These phenotypes can be modeled in animal subjects using Pavlovian fear conditioning, allowing investigation of the underlying neurobiology of normative and pathological fear. Preclinical studies reveal a number of neurotransmitter systems and circuits critical for aversive learning and memory that have informed the development of therapies used in human clinical trials. In this review, we discuss the evidence for a number of established and emerging pharmacotherapies and device-based treatments for posttraumatic stress disorder that have been developed via a bench to bedside translational model. PMID:26238379

  9. The behavioral inhibition system and the verbal information pathway to children's fears

    OpenAIRE

    Field, Andy P.

    2006-01-01

    The behavioral inhibition system (BIS) is the neurological substrate of trait anxiety and is linked to the development of anxiety disorders. Three experiments are reported that investigate the moderating influence of the BIS on 1 pathway to fear: threat information. In all studies, children were given verbal information about a set of novel animals, and their BIS sensitivity was measured. The results suggest that BIS sensitivity (a) facilitates attentional biases to stimuli associated with th...

  10. Genetics of PTSD: Fear Conditioning as a Model for Future Research

    OpenAIRE

    Amstadter, Ananda B.; Nugent, Nicole R.; Koenen, Karestan C.

    2009-01-01

    In the last decade, the number of publications in psychiatric genetics has nearly tripled but little attention has been paid to the role of genetic factors in the etiology of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The present review summarizes the current state of genetic research on PTSD. First, we outline information regarding genetic influences provided by family investigations and by twin studies. Second, we propose the fear-conditioning model of PTSD as a framework for the nomination of c...

  11. Oxytocin Facilitates Pavlovian Fear Learning in Males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckstein, Monika; Scheele, Dirk; Patin, Alexandra; Preckel, Katrin; Becker, Benjamin; Walter, Annika; Domschke, Katharina; Grinevich, Valery; Maier, Wolfgang; Hurlemann, René

    2016-03-01

    In human evolution, social group living and Pavlovian fear conditioning have evolved as adaptive mechanisms promoting survival and reproductive success. The evolutionarily conserved hypothalamic peptide oxytocin is a key modulator of human sociality, but its effects on fear conditioning are still elusive. In the present randomized controlled study involving 97 healthy male subjects, we therefore employed functional magnetic resonance imaging and simultaneous skin conductance response (SCR) measures to characterize the modulatory influence of intranasal oxytocin (24 IU) on Pavlovian fear conditioning. We found that the peptide strengthened conditioning on both the behavioral and neural levels. Specifically, subjects exhibited faster task-related responses and enhanced SCRs to fear-associated stimuli in the late phase of conditioning, which was paralleled by heightened activity in cingulate cortex subregions in the absence of changes in amygdala function. This speaks against amygdalocentric views of oxytocin having pure anxiolytic-like effects. Instead, it suggests that the peptide enables extremely rapid and flexible adaptation to fear signals in social contexts, which may confer clear evolutionary advantages but could also elevate vulnerability for the pathological sequelae of interpersonal trauma. PMID:26272050

  12. Demographic factors predict magnitude of conditioned fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenbaum, Blake L; Bui, Eric; Marin, Marie-France; Holt, Daphne J; Lasko, Natasha B; Pitman, Roger K; Orr, Scott P; Milad, Mohammed R

    2015-10-01

    There is substantial variability across individuals in the magnitudes of their skin conductance (SC) responses during the acquisition and extinction of conditioned fear. To manage this variability, subjects may be matched for demographic variables, such as age, gender and education. However, limited data exist addressing how much variability in conditioned SC responses is actually explained by these variables. The present study assessed the influence of age, gender and education on the SC responses of 222 subjects who underwent the same differential conditioning paradigm. The demographic variables were found to predict a small but significant amount of variability in conditioned responding during fear acquisition, but not fear extinction learning or extinction recall. A larger differential change in SC during acquisition was associated with more education. Older participants and women showed smaller differential SC during acquisition. Our findings support the need to consider age, gender and education when studying fear acquisition but not necessarily when examining fear extinction learning and recall. Variability in demographic factors across studies may partially explain the difficulty in reproducing some SC findings. PMID:26151498

  13. [Mechanisms for regulation of fear conditioning and memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kida, Satoshi

    2014-11-01

    Pavlovian fear conditioning is a model of fear learning and memory. The mechanisms regulating fear conditioning and memory have been investigated in humans and rodents. In this paradigm, animals learn and memorize an association between a conditioned stimulus (CS), such as context, and an unconditioned stimulus (US), such as an electrical footshock that induces fear. Fear memory generated though fear conditioning is stabilized via a memory consolidation process. Moreover, recent studies have shown the existence of memory processes that control fear memory following the retrieval of consolidated memory. Indeed, when fear memory is retrieved by re-exposure to the CS, the retrieved memory is re-stabilized via the reconsolidation process. On the other hand, the retrieval of fear memory by prolonged re-exposure to the CS also leads to fear memory extinction, new inhibitory learning against the fear memory, in which animals learn that they do not need to respond to the CS. Importantly, the reinforcement of fear memory after retrieval (i.e., re-experience such as flashbacks or nightmares) has been thought to be associated with the development of emotional disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In this review, I summarize recent progress in studies on the mechanism of fear conditioning and memory consolidation, reconsolidation and extinction, and furthermore, introduce our recent establishment of a mouse PTSD model that shows enhancement of fear memory after retrieval. PMID:25536762

  14. Fear and Anger Reactivity Trajectories from 4 to 16 Months: The Roles of Temperament, Regulation, and Maternal Sensitivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braungart-Rieker, Julia M.; Hill-Soderlund, Ashley L.; Karrass, Jan

    2010-01-01

    Two goals guided this study: (a) describe changes in infant fear and anger reactivity from 4 to 16 months and (b) examine the degree to which infant temperament, attentional regulation, and maternal sensitivity predict reactivity trajectories. Participants included 143 mothers and infants (57% male) who visited the laboratory at 4, 8, 12, and 16…

  15. "Proper Masculinities" and the Fear of Feminisation in Modern Cyprus: University Students Talk about Homosexuality and Gendered Subjectivities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onoufriou, Andreas

    2010-01-01

    The present article attempts to pay attention to the ways in which a group of young Cypriot students engage in the construction of conventional notions of masculinities through the negation and the fear of homosexual desire. Drawing on interviews with 12 male and female university students, I argue that many young men go through complicated…

  16. Generalization of Pain-Related Fear Using a Left-Right Hand Judgment Conditioning Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meulders, Ann; Harvie, Daniel S; Lorimer Moseley, G; Vlaeyen, Johan W S

    2015-09-01

    Recent research suggests that the mere intention to perform a painful movement can elicit pain-related fear. Based on these findings, the present study aimed to determine whether imagining a movement that is associated with pain (CS+) can start to elicit conditioned pain-related fear as well and whether pain-related fear elicited by imagining a painful movement can spread towards novel, similar but distinct imagined movements. We proposed a new experimental paradigm that integrates the left-right hand judgment task (HJT) with a differential fear conditioning procedure. During Acquisition, one hand posture (CS+) was consistently followed by a painful electrocutaneous stimulus (pain-US) and another hand posture (CS-) was not. Participants were instructed to make left-right judgments, which involve mentally rotating their own hand to match the displayed hand postures (i.e., motor imagery). During Generalization, participants were presented with a series of novel hand postures with six grades of perceptual similarity to the CS+ (generalization stimuli; GSs). Finally, during Extinction, the CS+ hand posture was no longer reinforced. The results showed that (1) a painful hand posture triggers fear and increased US-expectancy as compared to a nonpainful hand posture, (2) this pain-related fear spreads to similar but distinct hand postures following a generalization gradient, and subsequently, (3) it can be successfully reduced during extinction. These effects were apparent in the verbal ratings, but not in the startle measures. Because of the lack of effect in the startle measures, we cannot draw firm conclusions about whether the "imagined movements" (i.e., motor imagery of the hand postures) gained associative strength rather than the hand posture pictures itself. From a clinical perspective, basic research into generalization of pain-related fear triggered by covert CSs such as intentions, imagined movements and movement-related cognitions might further our

  17. Lesions of the posterior paraventricular nucleus of the thalamus attenuate fear expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yonghui eLi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The paraventricular nucleus of the thalamus (PVT has generated interest because of its strong projections to areas of the brain associated with the regulation of emotional behaviors. The posterior aspect of the PVT (pPVT is notable for its projection to the central nucleus of the amygdala which is essential for the expression of a conditioned fear response. The present study was done to determine if the pPVT is involved in the expression of fear by examining the effect of post-conditioning lesions of the pPVT. Male rats were trained to bar press for food pellets on a variable ratio schedule. Fear conditioning was done using auditory tones (30 s that co-terminate with footschocks (0.65 mA, 1.0 s. Rats were anesthetized 24 hours later and small bilateral electrolytic lesions of the pPVT were made. Fear expression to the tone was assessed using suppression of bar-pressing and freezing after one week of recovery from the surgical procedure. Small bilateral lesions of the pPVT increased bar-pressing for food and decreased freezing during the presentation of the conditioned tone. Lesions of the pPVT had no effect on fear extinction, fear conditioning to a novel tone, or the motivation for food as assessed using a progressive ratio schedule. The results of the experiment support a role for the pPVT in fear expression. In contrast, the pPVT does not appear to be involved in fear learning or extinction nor does it appear to play a role in the motivation of rats to bar press for food.

  18. Methylphenidate alters selective attention by amplifying salience

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huurne, N.; Fallon, S.J.; Schouwenburg, M. van; Schaaf, M.; Buitelaar, J.; Jensen, O.; Cools, R.

    2015-01-01

    RATIONALE: Methylphenidate, the most common treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), is increasingly used by healthy individuals as a "smart drug" to enhance cognitive abilities like attention. A key feature of (selective) attention is the ability to ignore irrelevant but salien

  19. Plant intelligence and attention

    OpenAIRE

    Marder, Michael

    2013-01-01

    This article applies the phenomenological model of attention to plant monitoring of environmental stimuli and signal perception. Three complementary definitions of attention as selectivity, modulation and perdurance are explained with reference to plant signaling and behaviors, including foraging, ramet placement and abiotic stress communication. Elements of animal and human attentive attitudes are compared with plant attention at the levels of cognitive focus, context and margin. It is argue...

  20. Attention Competition with Advertisement

    OpenAIRE

    Cetin, Uzay; Bingol, Haluk O.

    2012-01-01

    In the new digital age, information is available in large quantities. Since information consumes primarily the attention of its recipients, the scarcity of attention is becoming the main limiting factor. In this study, we investigate the impact of advertisement pressure on a cultural market where consumers have a limited attention capacity. A model of competition for attention is developed and investigated analytically and by simulation. Advertisement is found to be much more effective when a...

  1. Dynamics of Media Attention

    OpenAIRE

    V. A. Traag; Reinanda, R.; Hicks, J.; Klinken, van, J.

    2014-01-01

    Studies of human attention dynamics analyses how attention is focused on specific topics, issues or people. In online social media, there are clear signs of exogenous shocks, bursty dynamics, and an exponential or powerlaw lifetime distribution. We here analyse the attention dynamics of traditional media, focussing on co-occurrence of people in newspaper articles. The results are quite different from online social networks and attention. Different regimes seem to be operating at two different...

  2. Effects of facial color on the subliminal processing of fearful faces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakajima, K; Minami, T; Nakauchi, S

    2015-12-01

    Recent studies have suggested that both configural information, such as face shape, and surface information is important for face perception. In particular, facial color is sufficiently suggestive of emotional states, as in the phrases: "flushed with anger" and "pale with fear." However, few studies have examined the relationship between facial color and emotional expression. On the other hand, event-related potential (ERP) studies have shown that emotional expressions, such as fear, are processed unconsciously. In this study, we examined how facial color modulated the supraliminal and subliminal processing of fearful faces. We recorded electroencephalograms while participants performed a facial emotion identification task involving masked target faces exhibiting facial expressions (fearful or neutral) and colors (natural or bluish). The results indicated that there was a significant interaction between facial expression and color for the latency of the N170 component. Subsequent analyses revealed that the bluish-colored faces increased the latency effect of facial expressions compared to the natural-colored faces, indicating that the bluish color modulated the processing of fearful expressions. We conclude that the unconscious processing of fearful faces is affected by facial color. PMID:26424379

  3. Correlations between psychological tests and physiological responses during fear conditioning and renewal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martínez Karen G

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Anxiety disorders are characterized by specific emotions, thoughts and physiological responses. Little is known, however, about the relationship between psychological/personality indices of anxiety responses to fear stimuli. Methods We studied this relationship in healthy subjects by comparing scores on psychological and personality questionnaires with results of an experimental fear conditioning paradigm using a visual conditioned stimulus (CS. We measured skin conductance response (SCR during habituation, conditioning, and extinction; subsequently testing for recall and renewal of fear 24 hours later. Results We found that multiple regression models explained 45% of the variance during conditioning to the CS+, and 24% of the variance during renewal of fear to the CS+. Factors that explained conditioning included lower levels of conscientiousness, increased baseline reactivity (SCL, and response to the shock (UCR. Low levels of extraversion correlated with greater renewal. No model could be found to explain extinction learning or extinction recall to the CS+. Conclusions The lack of correlation of fear extinction with personality and neuropsychological indices suggests that extinction may be less determined by trait variables and cognitive state, and may depend more on the subject’s current emotional state. The negative correlation between fear renewal and extraversion suggests that this personality characteristic may protect against post-treatment relapse of symptoms of anxiety disorders.

  4. Psychopathic traits are associated with reduced attention to the eyes of emotional faces among adult male non-offenders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Mark Gillespie

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Psychopathic traits are linked with impairments in emotional facial expression recognition. These impairments may, in part, reflect reduced attention to the eyes of emotional faces. Although reduced attention to the eyes has been noted among children with conduct problems and callous-unemotional traits, similar findings are yet to be found in relation to psychopathic traits among adult male participants. Here we investigated the relationship of primary (selfish, uncaring and secondary (impulsive, antisocial psychopathic traits with attention to the eyes among adult male non-offenders during an emotion recognition task. We measured the number of fixations, and overall dwell time, on the eyes and the mouth of male and female faces showing the six basic emotions at varying levels of intensity. We found no relationship of primary or secondary psychopathic traits with recognition accuracy. However, primary psychopathic traits were associated with a reduced number of fixations, and lower overall dwell time, on the eyes relative to the mouth across expressions, intensity, and sex. Furthermore, the relationship of primary psychopathic traits with attention to the eyes of angry and fearful faces was influenced by the sex and intensity of the expression. We also showed that a greater number of fixations on the eyes, relative to the mouth, was associated with increased accuracy for angry and fearful expression recognition. These results are the first to show effects of psychopathic traits on attention to the eyes of emotional faces in an adult male sample, and may support amygdala based accounts of psychopathy. These findings may also have methodological implications for clinical studies of emotion recognition.

  5. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Doğangün, Burak; Yavuz, Mesut

    2011-01-01

    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is characterized by excessive overactiviy inattention and impulsiveness It is reported that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder affects 5 12 of children worldwide It has significant negative effects on psychological and social development and academic functioning of the children if it remains nbsp; untreated The etiology of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is unknown Genetic neurodevelopmental neurophysiological and psychosocial factors ar...

  6. Tokophobia: when fear of childbirth prevails

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Scollato

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present article is to start to analyze the tokophobic condition by reporting the main studies that since the end of the nineties have drawn the attention both of the medical community and the public to a disorder that currently seems to involve an increasing number of women. In the first part we will try to trace a brief history of “tokophobia”, of which term we will report the etymology and try to give a definition according to current parameters. This phobia will then be analyzed by highlighting its primary causes, associated factors and its consequences. In the second part of this paper, the results of further studies on the subject will be reported, giving particular attention to the research carried out by Hofberg and Brockinton (2000. Finally, we will try to give a brief overview of the possible treatments currently provided to mitigate, when it is not possible to heal it, the tokophobic condition.

  7. Fifty million Frenchmen have few nuclear fears

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    DuPont, R.L.

    A psychiatrist examines why France chose the nuclear power option in 1974 and expects for it to generate 75% of its power by 1990 in contrast to the US rejection and fear of nuclear power. The fear dominating US media coverage since 1968 is classic phobic thinking. A comparison of US and French attitudes reveals that French nuclear plants are tourist attractions, accepted by residents as both safe and of economic benefit. Accidents are examined realistically in France without the what if drama given to US incidents. Some political problems have developed and recent anti-nuclear activities are taken seriously, but the opposition was not based on fear. Public acceptance in France is partly due to a lack of energy alternatives and a pragmatism that works against phobias. (DCK)

  8. Fifty million Frenchmen have few nuclear fears

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A psychiatrist examines why France chose the nuclear power option in 1974 and expects for it to generate 75% of its power by 1990 in contrast to the US rejection and fear of nuclear power. The fear dominating US media coverage since 1968 is classic phobic thinking. A comparison of US and French attitudes reveals that French nuclear plants are tourist attractions, accepted by residents as both safe and of economic benefit. Accidents are examined realistically in France without the what if drama given to US incidents. Some political problems have developed and recent anti-nuclear activities are taken seriously, but the opposition was not based on fear. Public acceptance in France is partly due to a lack of energy alternatives and a pragmatism that works against phobias

  9. Attention competition with advertisement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cetin, Uzay; Bingol, Haluk O.

    2014-09-01

    In the new digital age, information is available in large quantities. Since information consumes primarily the attention of its recipients, the scarcity of attention is becoming the main limiting factor. In this study, we investigate the impact of advertisement pressure on a cultural market where consumers have a limited attention capacity. A model of competition for attention is developed and investigated analytically and by simulation. Advertisement is found to be much more effective when the attention capacity of agents is extremely scarce. We have observed that the market share of the advertised item improves if dummy items are introduced to the market while the strength of the advertisement is kept constant.

  10. Beyond the Medial Regions of Prefrontal Cortex in the Regulation of Fear and Anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiba, Yoshiro; Santangelo, Andrea M; Roberts, Angela C

    2016-01-01

    Fear and anxiety are adaptive responses but if left unregulated, or inappropriately regulated, they become biologically and socially maladaptive. Dysregulated emotions are manifest in a wide variety of psychiatric and neurological conditions but the external expression gives little indication of the underlying causes, which are inevitably multi-determined. To go beyond the overt phenotype and begin to understand the causal mechanisms leading to conditions characterized by anxiety and disorders of mood, it is necessary to identify the base psychological processes that have become dysregulated, and map them on to their associated neural substrates. So far, attention has been focused primarily on the medial regions of prefrontal cortex (PFC) and in particular their contribution to the expression and extinction of conditioned fear. However, functional neuroimaging studies have shown that the sphere of influence within the PFC is not restricted to its medial regions, but extends into dorsal, ventrolateral (vlPFC) and orbitofrontal (OFC) regions too; although the causal role of these other areas in the regulation of fear and anxiety remains to be determined and in the case of the OFC, existing findings are conflicting. Here, we review the evidence for the contribution of these other regions in negative emotion regulation in rodents and old world and new world monkeys. We consider a variety of different contexts, including conditioned and innate fear, learned and unlearned anxiety and cost-benefit decision-making, and a range of physiological and behavioral measures of emotion. It is proposed that both the OFC and vlPFC contribute to emotion regulation via their involvement, respectively, in the prediction of future outcomes and higher-order attentional control. The fractionation of these neurocognitive and neurobehavioral systems that regulate fear and anxiety opens up new opportunities for diagnostic stratification and personalized treatment strategies. PMID:26941618

  11. Attention Alters Perceived Attractiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Störmer, Viola S; Alvarez, George A

    2016-04-01

    Can attention alter the impression of a face? Previous studies showed that attention modulates the appearance of lower-level visual features. For instance, attention can make a simple stimulus appear to have higher contrast than it actually does. We tested whether attention can also alter the perception of a higher-order property-namely, facial attractiveness. We asked participants to judge the relative attractiveness of two faces after summoning their attention to one of the faces using a briefly presented visual cue. Across trials, participants judged the attended face to be more attractive than the same face when it was unattended. This effect was not due to decision or response biases, but rather was due to changes in perceptual processing of the faces. These results show that attention alters perceived facial attractiveness, and broadly demonstrate that attention can influence higher-level perception and may affect people's initial impressions of one another. PMID:26966228

  12. Principles of visual attention

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bundesen, Claus; Habekost, Thomas

    The nature of attention is one of the oldest and most central problems in psychology. A huge amount of research has been produced on this subject in the last half century, especially on attention in the visual modality, but a general explanation has remained elusive. Many still view attention...... mechanisms are described in a set of simple equations, which allow TVA to mathematically model a large number of classical results in the attention literature. The theory explains psychological and neuroscientific findings by the same equations; TVA is a complete theory of visual attention, linking mind and...... brain. Aimed at advanced students and professional researchers, Principles of Visual Attention contains a detailed review of the most important research done on attention in vision, spanning cognitive psychology, brain imaging, patient studies, and recordings from single cells in the visual cortex. The...

  13. Developmental aspects of fear: Comparing the acquisition and generalization of conditioned fear in children and adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiele, Miriam A; Reinhard, Julia; Reif, Andreas; Domschke, Katharina; Romanos, Marcel; Deckert, Jürgen; Pauli, Paul

    2016-05-01

    Most research on human fear conditioning and its generalization has focused on adults whereas only little is known about these processes in children. Direct comparisons between child and adult populations are needed to determine developmental risk markers of fear and anxiety. We compared 267 children and 285 adults in a differential fear conditioning paradigm and generalization test. Skin conductance responses (SCR) and ratings of valence and arousal were obtained to indicate fear learning. Both groups displayed robust and similar differential conditioning on subjective and physiological levels. However, children showed heightened fear generalization compared to adults as indexed by higher arousal ratings and SCR to the generalization stimuli. Results indicate overgeneralization of conditioned fear as a developmental correlate of fear learning. The developmental change from a shallow to a steeper generalization gradient is likely related to the maturation of brain structures that modulate efficient discrimination between danger and (ambiguous) safety cues. © 2016 The Authors. Developmental Psychobiology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 58: 471-481, 2016. PMID:26798984

  14. News Media, Crime and Fear of Violence

    OpenAIRE

    Mirka Smolej

    2011-01-01

    Finland witnessed a surge in crime news reporting during the 1990s. At the same time, there was a significant rise in the levels of fear of crime reported by surveys. This research examines whether and how the two phenomena: news media and fear of violence were associated with each other. The dissertation consists of five sub-studies and a summary article. The first sub-study is a review of crime reporting trends in Finland, in which I have reviewed prior research and used existing Finni...

  15. [Emetophobia: morbid fear of vomiting and nausea].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snaebjarnardottir, Kolfinna; Sigurdsson, Engilbert

    2014-05-01

    Emetophobia is an intense, irrational fear or anxiety of or pertaining to vomiting. It is classified among specific phobias in ICD-10 and DSM-IV. This disorder is often hidden because of the shame associated with it among sufferers. As a result emetophobia has been studied less than most other anxiety disorders. Not much is known about the epidemiology, treatment and outcome of this disorder. We describe a woman in her thirties who has been living with emetophobia since she experienced emesis two successive Christmas Eves as a child. Subsequently her fear of vomiting has influenced many aspects of her daily life. PMID:24846951

  16. Attention Mosaics: Studies of Organizational Attention

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    L. Carvalho de Mesquita Ferreira (Luciana)

    2010-01-01

    textabstractOrganizational studies emphasizing the role of attention in organizational behavior depart from the idea that organizations, like individuals, have limited capacity to attend to environmental stimuli. The bounded capacity of the organizations to respond to stimuli is conditioned by the l

  17. Media and children's aggression, fear, and altruism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Barbara J

    2008-01-01

    Noting that the social and emotional experiences of American children today often heavily involve electronic media, Barbara Wilson takes a close look at how exposure to screen media affects children's well-being and development. She concludes that media influence on children depends more on the type of content that children find attractive than on the sheer amount of time they spend in front of the screen. Wilson begins by reviewing evidence on the link between media and children's emotions. She points out that children can learn about the nature and causes of different emotions from watching the emotional experiences of media characters and that they often experience empathy with those characters. Although research on the long-term effects of media exposure on children's emotional skill development is limited, a good deal of evidence shows that media exposure can contribute to children's fears and anxieties. Both fictional and news programming can cause lasting emotional upset, though the themes that upset children differ according to a child's age. Wilson also explores how media exposure affects children's social development. Strong evidence shows that violent television programming contributes to children's aggressive behavior. And a growing body of work indicates that playing violent video games can have the same harmful effect. Yet if children spend time with educational programs and situation comedies targeted to youth, media exposure can have more prosocial effects by increasing children's altruism, cooperation, and even tolerance for others. Wilson also shows that children's susceptibility to media influence can vary according to their gender, their age, how realistic they perceive the media to be, and how much they identify with characters and people on the screen. She concludes with guidelines to help parents enhance the positive effects of the media while minimizing the risks associated with certain types of content. PMID:21338007

  18. Effects of unconditioned stimulus intensity and fear extinction on subsequent sleep architecture in an afternoon nap.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sturm, Anna; Czisch, Michael; Spoormaker, Victor I

    2013-12-01

    Impaired fear extinction and disturbed sleep coincide in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but the nature of this relationship is unclear. Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep deprivation impairs fear extinction recall in rodents and young healthy subjects, and animal models have demonstrated both disrupted sleep after fear conditioning and normalized sleep after extinction learning. As a correlation between unconditioned stimulus (US) responding and subsequent sleep architecture has been observed in healthy subjects, the goal of this study was to test whether US intensity would causally affect subsequent sleep. Twenty-four young healthy subjects underwent a fear conditioning session with skin conductance response measurements before an afternoon session of polysomnographically recorded sleep (up to 120 min) in the sleep laboratory. Two factors were manipulated experimentally in a 2 × 2 design: US (electrical shock) was set at high or low intensity, and subjects did or did not receive an extinction session after fear conditioning. We observed that neither factor affected REM sleep amount, that high US intensity nominally increased sleep fragmentation (more Stage 1 sleep, stage shifts and wake after sleep onset), and that extinction increased Stage 4 amount. Moreover, reduced Stage 1 and increased Stage 4 and REM sleep were associated with subjective sleep quality of the afternoon nap. These results provide evidence for the notion that US intensity and extinction affect subsequent sleep architecture in young healthy subjects, which may provide a translational bridge from findings in animal studies to correlations observed in PTSD patients. PMID:23919462

  19. Overriding auditory attentional capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalton, Polly; Lavie, Nilli

    2007-02-01

    Attentional capture by color singletons during shape search can be eliminated when the target is not a feature singleton (Bacon & Egeth, 1994). This suggests that a "singleton detection" search strategy must be adopted for attentional capture to occur. Here we find similar effects on auditory attentional capture. Irrelevant high-intensity singletons interfered with an auditory search task when the target itself was also a feature singleton. However, singleton interference was eliminated when the target was not a singleton (i.e., when nontargets were made heterogeneous, or when more than one target sound was presented). These results suggest that auditory attentional capture depends on the observer's attentional set, as does visual attentional capture. The suggestion that hearing might act as an early warning system that would always be tuned to unexpected unique stimuli must therefore be modified to accommodate these strategy-dependent capture effects. PMID:17557587

  20. Aging, exercise, and attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, H L; Kramer, A F; Capaldi, D

    1992-12-01

    The authors investigated the relationship among aging, attentional processes, and exercise in 2 experiments. First they examined age differences on 2 attentional tasks, a time-sharing task and an attentional flexibility task. Young adults alternated attention between 2 sequenced tasks more rapidly and time-shared the processing of 2 tasks more efficiently than older adults. They then investigated the effects of aerobic exercise on the same 2 attentional tasks in older adults. Following the 10-week exercise program, older exercisers showed substantially more improvement in alternation speed and time-sharing efficiency than older controls. Interestingly, this exercise effect was specific to dual-task processing. Both groups of subjects showed equivalent effects on single-task performance. These results indicate that aerobic exercise can exert a beneficial influence on the efficiency of at least 2 different attentional processes in older adults. PMID:1466833

  1. Race, Education, and the Politics of Fear

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Barbara Loomis

    2008-01-01

    This article explores the legacies of the 1954 "Brown v. Board of Education" Supreme Court decision within the historical context of race relations in the United States. The pursuit by African Americans to exercise their rights of citizenship is described as influenced by the changing face of fear. The Supreme Court decisions that determined the…

  2. Stereotyping in Fear of Success Cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juran, Shelley

    Prior studies suggest that sex-role stereotypes influence responses to Horner's fear of success cue. This study investigates stereotypes about both sex roles and achievement settings. One hundred sixty college males and females wrote stories to different cues, then rated the masculinity-femininity of their story characters. Both "John and "Anne"…

  3. Mass Media and the Fear of Crime.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heath, Linda; Gilbert, Kevin

    1996-01-01

    Provides an overview of the research on mass media effects on perceptions of crime danger, personal fear of crime, and reactions to crime risk. Discovers that mass media effects involve a number of variables and moderators. These include audience characteristics, degree and type of coverage, and location. (MJP)

  4. Fears in Czech Adolescents: A Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalcáková, Radka; Lacinová, Lenka; Kyjonková, Hana; Bouša, Ondrej; Jelínek, Martin

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates developmental patterns of fear in adolescence. It is based on longitudinal data collected as a part of the European Longitudinal Study of Pregnancy and Childhood (ELSPAC) project. A total of 186 Czech adolescents (43% girls) were assessed repeatedly at the age of 11, 13, and 15 years. The free-response method was…

  5. Pride and fear during major organisational change

    OpenAIRE

    Riel, Cees; Berens, Guido

    2015-01-01

    textabstractOrganisational behaviour experts have known for a long time that when employees identify closely with their company, the company functions better. People quit less often, they work harder, and they tend to be more supportive of their employer. And in a volatile time, such as during a merger, corporate success may depend on nurturing employees’ pride and alleviating their fears.

  6. Effects of fear factors in disease propagation

    CERN Document Server

    Wang, Yubo; Wong, Limsoon; Fu, Xiuju; Ma, Stefan; Cheng, Tee Hiang; 10.1088/1751-8113/44/35/355101

    2011-01-01

    Upon an outbreak of a dangerous infectious disease, people generally tend to reduce their contacts with others in fear of getting infected. Such typical actions apparently help slow down the spreading of infection. Thanks to today's broad public media coverage, the fear factor may even contribute to prevent an outbreak from happening. We are motivated to study such effects by adopting a complex network approach. Firstly we evaluate the simple case where connections between individuals are randomly removed due to fear factor. Then we consider a different case where each individual keeps at least a few connections after contact reduction. Such a case is arguably more realistic since people may choose to keep a few social contacts, e.g., with their family members and closest friends, at any cost. Finally a study is conducted on the case where connection removals are carried out dynamically while the infection is spreading out. Analytical and simulation results show that the fear factor may not easily prevent an ...

  7. Effects of fear factors in disease propagation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Upon an outbreak of a dangerous infectious disease, people generally tend to reduce their contacts with others in fear of getting infected. Such typical actions apparently help slow down the spreading of infection. Thanks to today's broad public media coverage, the fear factor may even contribute to preventing an outbreak from happening. We are motivated to study such effects by adopting a complex network approach. First we evaluate the simple case where connections between individuals are randomly removed due to the fear factor. Then we consider a different case where each individual keeps at least a few connections after contact reduction. Such a case is arguably more realistic since people may choose to keep a few social contacts, e.g., with their family members and closest friends, at any cost. Finally, a study is conducted on the case where connection removals are carried out dynamically while the infection is spreading out. Analytical and simulation results show that the fear factor may not easily prevent an epidemic outbreak from happening in scale-free networks. However, it significantly reduces the fraction of the nodes ever getting infected during the outbreak. (paper)

  8. Overriding auditory attentional capture

    OpenAIRE

    Dalton, Polly; Lavie, Nilli

    2007-01-01

    Attentional capture by color singletons during shape search can be eliminated when the target is not a feature singleton (Bacon & Egeth, 1994). This suggests that a "singleton detection" search strategy must be adopted for attentional capture to occur. Here we find similar effects on auditory attentional capture. Irrelevant high-intensity singletons interfered with an auditory search task when the target itself was also a feature singleton. However, singleton interference was eliminated when ...

  9. Attention and choice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orquin, Jacob Lund; Mueller Loose, Simone

    2013-01-01

    This paper reviews studies on eye movements in decision making, and compares their observations to theoretical predictions concerning the role of attention in decision making. Four decision theories are examined: rational models, bounded rationality, evidence accumulation, and parallel constraint...... that these assumptions are implausible, and that more accurate assumptions could have been made based on prior attention and eye movement research. Future decision making research would benefit from greater integration with attention research....

  10. Fearfulness Affects Quail Maternal Care and Subsequent Offspring Development

    OpenAIRE

    Pittet, Florent; Houdelier, Cécilia; Le Bot, Océane; Leterrier, Christine; Lumineau, Sophie

    2014-01-01

    Our study investigated relationships between a precocial bird's fearfulness and maternal care, and the implication of maternal care as a vector for non-genomic transmission of fearfulness to chicks. We compared care given to chicks between two sets of female Japanese quail selected to present either high (LTI) or low fearfulness (STI). Chicks, from a broiler line, were adopted by these females following a sensitization procedure. Chicks' fearfulness after separation from their mother was asse...

  11. NMDA receptors and fear extinction: implications for cognitive behavioral therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Davis, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Based primarily on studies that employ Pavlovian fear conditioning, extinction of conditioned fear has been found to be mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in the amygdala and medial prefrontal cortex. This led to the discovery that an NMDA partial agonist, D-cycloserine, could facilitate fear extinction when given systemically or locally into the amygdala. Because many forms of cognitive behavioral therapy depend on fear extinction, this led to the successful use of D-cycloseri...

  12. Prefrontal Cortex in Learning to Overcome Generalized Fear

    OpenAIRE

    Edward Korzus

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Normal brain functioning relies critically on the ability to control appropriate behavioral responses to fearful stimuli. Overgeneralized fear is the major symptom of anxiety disorders including posttraumatic stress disorder. This review describes recent data demonstrating that the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) plays a critical role in the refining of cues that drive the acquisition of fear response. Recent studies on molecular mechanisms that underlie the role of mPFC in fear discr...

  13. Brain dynamics of visual attention during anticipation and encoding of threat- and safe-cues in spider-phobic individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalowski, Jaroslaw M; Pané-Farré, Christiane A; Löw, Andreas; Hamm, Alfons O

    2015-09-01

    This study systematically investigated the sensitivity of the phobic attention system by measuring event-related potentials (ERPs) in spider-phobic and non-phobic volunteers in a context where spider and neutral pictures were presented (phobic threat condition) and in contexts where no phobic but unpleasant and neutral or only neutral pictures were displayed (phobia-irrelevant conditions). In a between-group study, participants were assigned to phobia-irrelevant conditions either before or after the exposure to spider pictures (pre-exposure vs post-exposure participants). Additionally, each picture was preceded by a fixation cross presented in one of three different colors that were informative about the category of an upcoming picture. In the phobic threat condition, spider-phobic participants showed a larger P1 than controls for all pictures and signal cues. Moreover, individuals with spider phobia who were sensitized by the exposure to phobic stimuli (i.e. post-exposure participants) responded with an increased P1 also in phobia-irrelevant conditions. In contrast, no group differences between spider-phobic and non-phobic individuals were observed in the P1-amplitudes during viewing of phobia-irrelevant stimuli in the pre-exposure group. In addition, cues signaling neutral pictures elicited decreased stimulus-preceding negativity (SPN) compared with cues signaling emotional pictures. Moreover, emotional pictures and cues signaling emotional pictures evoked larger early posterior negativity (EPN) and late positive potential (LPP) than neutral stimuli. Spider phobics showed greater selective attention effects than controls for phobia-relevant pictures (increased EPN and LPP) and cues (increased LPP and SPN). Increased sensitization of the attention system observed in spider-phobic individuals might facilitate fear conditioning and promote generalization of fear playing an important role in the maintenance of anxiety disorders. PMID:25608985

  14. Tropes of Fear: the Impact of Globalization on Batek Religious Landscapes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Tacey

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The Batek are a forest and forest-fringe dwelling population numbering around 1,500 located in Peninsular Malaysia. Most Batek groups were mobile forest-dwelling foragers and collectors until the recent past. The Batek imbue the forest with religious significance that they inscribe onto the landscape through movement, everyday activities, storytelling, trancing and shamanic journeying. However, as processes of globalization transform Malaysian landscapes, many Batek groups have been deterritorialized and relocated to the forest fringes where they are often pressured into converting to world religions, particularly Islam. Batek religious beliefs and practices have been re-shaped by their increasing encounters with global flows of ideologies, technologies, objects, capital and people, as landscapes are opened up to development. This article analyzes the ways these encounters are incorporated into the fabric of the Batek’s religious world and how new objects and ideas have been figuratively and literally assimilated into their taboo systems and cosmology. Particular attention is paid to the impacts of globalization as expressed through tropes of fear.

  15. Emotion and affect in mental imagery: Do fear and anxiety manipulate mental rotation performance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra eKaltner

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about the effects of fear as a basic emotion on mental rotation performance. We expected that the emotional arousal evoked by fearful stimuli presented prior to each mental rotation trial would enhance mental rotation performance. Regarding the influence of anxiety, high anxious participants are supposed to show slower responses and higher error rates in this specific visuo-spatial ability. Furthermore, with respect to the embodied cognition viewpoint we wanted to investigate if the influence of fear on mental rotation performance is the same for egocentric and object-based transformations. Results show that fear enhances mental rotation performance, expressed by a higher mental rotation speed. Interestingly, this influence is stimulus-specific: it is restricted to egocentric transformations. Both observation of emotional stimuli and egocentric strategies are associated with left hemisphere activation which could explain a stronger influence on this type of transformation during observation. Another possible notion is the conceptual link between visuo-spatial perspective taking and empathy based on the co-activation of parietal areas. Stronger responses in egocentric transformations could result from this specific link. Regarding the influence of anxiety, participants with high scores on the trait-anxiety scale showed poor results in both reaction time and mental rotation speed. Findings of impoverished recruitment of prefrontal attentional control in patients with high scores in trait anxiety could be the explanation for this reduced performance.

  16. The Impact of Perceptual Load on the Non-Conscious Processing of Fearful Faces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lili; Feng, Chunliang; Mai, Xiaoqin; Jia, Lina; Zhu, Xiangru; Luo, Wenbo; Luo, Yue-jia

    2016-01-01

    Emotional stimuli can be processed without consciousness. In the current study, we used event-related potentials (ERPs) to assess whether perceptual load influences non-conscious processing of fearful facial expressions. Perceptual load was manipulated using a letter search task with the target letter presented at the fixation point, while facial expressions were presented peripherally and masked to prevent conscious awareness. The letter string comprised six letters (X or N) that were identical (low load) or different (high load). Participants were instructed to discriminate the letters at fixation or the facial expression (fearful or neutral) in the periphery. Participants were faster and more accurate at detecting letters in the low load condition than in the high load condition. Fearful faces elicited a sustained positivity from 250 ms to 700 ms post-stimulus over fronto-central areas during the face discrimination and low-load letter discrimination conditions, but this effect was completely eliminated during high-load letter discrimination. Our findings imply that non-conscious processing of fearful faces depends on perceptual load, and attentional resources are necessary for non-conscious processing. PMID:27149273

  17. Behavioral and pharmacological validation of an integrated fear-potentiated startle and prepulse inhibition paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Mengjiao; Li, Ming

    2016-07-01

    Fear-potentiated startle (FPS) and prepulse inhibition (PPI) of acoustic startle are two widely used paradigms specifically designed to capture the impact of negative emotion (e.g. fear) and preattentive function on startle response. Currently, there is no single paradigm that incorporates both FPS and PPI, making it impossible to examine the potential interactions between fear and attention in the regulation of startle response. In this study, we developed an integrated FPS and PPI test protocol and validated it with psychoactive drugs. In Experiment 1, male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to one of five groups, receiving either Light -Shock conditioning trials, non-overlapping Lights and Shocks, Light alone, Shock alone, or no Light and Shock. They were then tested for startle response and PPI concurrently, under the Light or No Light. FPS was observed only in rats subjected to fear conditioning, whereas all rats showed PPI and startle habituation. Experiment 2 used this paradigm and demonstrated a dissociative effect between diazepam (an anxiolytic drug) and phencyclidine (a nonselective NMDA receptor antagonist) on FPS and PPI. Diazepam suppressed both FPS and PPI, while PCP selectively disrupted PPI but not FPS. The diazepam's anxiolytic effect on FPS was further confirmed in the elevated plus maze test. Together, our findings indicate that our paradigm combines FPS and PPI into a single paradigm, and that is useful to examine potential interactions between multiple psychological processes, to identify the common neural substrates and to screen new drugs with multiple psychoactive effects. PMID:27059335

  18. Fear memory formation can affect a different memory: fear conditioning affects the extinction, but not retrieval, of conditioned taste aversion (CTA) memory

    OpenAIRE

    Joels, Gil; Lamprecht, Raphael

    2014-01-01

    The formation of fear memory to a specific stimulus leads to subsequent fearful response to that stimulus. However, it is not apparent whether the formation of fear memory can affect other memories. We study whether specific fearful experience leading to fear memory affects different memories formation and extinction. We revealed that cued fear conditioning, but not unpaired or naïve training, inhibited the extinction of conditioned taste aversion (CTA) memory that was formed after fear condi...

  19. Novelty and Collective Attention

    CERN Document Server

    Wu, Fang

    2007-01-01

    The subject of collective attention is central to an information age where millions of people are inundated with daily messages. It is thus of interest to understand how attention to novel items propagates and eventually fades among large populations. We have analyzed the dynamics of collective attention among one million users of an interactive website -- \\texttt{digg.com} -- devoted to thousands of novel news stories. The observations can be described by a dynamical model characterized by a single novelty factor. Our measurements indicate that novelty within groups decays with a stretched-exponential law, suggesting the existence of a natural time scale over which attention fades.

  20. Japanese monkeys (Macaca fuscata) quickly detect snakes but not spiders: Evolutionary origins of fear-relevant animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawai, Nobuyuki; Koda, Hiroki

    2016-08-01

    Humans quickly detect the presence of evolutionary threats through visual perception. Many theorists have considered humans to be predisposed to respond to both snakes and spiders as evolutionarily fear-relevant stimuli. Evidence supports that human adults, children, and snake-naive monkeys all detect pictures of snakes among pictures of flowers more quickly than vice versa, but recent neurophysiological and behavioral studies suggest that spiders may, in fact, be processed similarly to nonthreat animals. The evidence of quick detection and rapid fear learning by primates is limited to snakes, and no such evidence exists for spiders, suggesting qualitative differences between fear of snakes and fear of spiders. Here, we show that snake-naive Japanese monkeys detect a single snake picture among 8 nonthreat animal pictures (koala) more quickly than vice versa; however, no such difference in detection was observed between spiders and pleasant animals. These robust differences between snakes and spiders are the most convincing evidence that the primate visual system is predisposed to pay attention to snakes but not spiders. These findings suggest that attentional bias toward snakes has an evolutionary basis but that bias toward spiders is more due to top-down, conceptually driven effects of emotion on attention capture. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27078076

  1. Does antenatal fear of childbirth predict postnatal fear of childbirth? - A study of Japanese women

    OpenAIRE

    Takegata, Mizuki; Haruna, Megumi; Matsuzaki, Masayo; Shiraishi, Mie; Okano, Tadaharu; Severinsson, Ingeborg Elisabeth

    2015-01-01

    The study aimed to determine whether antenatal fear of childbirth (expectation) could predict postnatal fear of childbirth (experience) by taking account of other antenatal psychological variables(anxiety and depression) as well as birth outcomes in Japanese women. A longitudinal observational study was conducted at a clinic in Tokyo, Japan, in 2011. Self-report questionnaires were distributed to 240 Japanese women at 37 gestational weeks (Time 1) and on the second day after delivery (Time 2)...

  2. Use of the ABA Fear Renewal Paradigm to Assess the Effects of Extinction with Co-Present Fear Inhibitors or Excitors: Implications for Theories of Extinction and for Treating Human Fears and Phobias

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Brian L.; Ayres, John J. B.

    2004-01-01

    In four experiments using albino rats in an ABA fear renewal paradigm, we studied conditioned fear in the A test context following extinction in Context B. Conditioned suppression of operant responding was the index of fear. In Experiments 1-3, we found that extinguishing a feared cue in compound with a putative conditioned inhibitor of fear led…

  3. Does mindfulness meditation improve attention in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modesto-Lowe, Vania; Farahmand, Pantea; Chaplin, Margaret; Sarro, Lauren

    2015-12-22

    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) manifests by high levels of inattention, impulsiveness and hyperactivity. ADHD starts in childhood and results in impairments that continue into adulthood. While hyperactivity declines over time, inattention and executive function difficulties persist, leading to functional deficits. Adolescents and adults with ADHD have pervasive impairment in interpersonal and family relationships. They may develop addiction, delinquent behavior and comorbid psychiatric disorders. Despite advances in diagnosis and treatment, persistent residual symptoms are common, highlighting the need for novel treatment strategies. Mindfulness training, derived from Eastern meditation practices, may improve self-regulation of attention. It may also be a useful strategy to augment standard ADHD treatments and may be used as a potential tool to reduce impairments in patients with residual symptoms of ADHD. Clinically, this would manifest by an increased ability to suppress task-unrelated thoughts and distractions resulting in improved attention, completion of tasks and potential improvement in occupational and social function. PMID:26740931

  4. Effect of attention control on sustained attention during induced anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grillon, Christian; Robinson, Oliver J; Mathur, Ambika; Ernst, Monique

    2016-06-01

    Anxiety has wide-reaching and complex effects on cognitive performance. Although it can intrude on cognition and interfere with performance, it can also facilitate information processing and behavioural responses. In a previous study, we showed that anxiety induced by threat of shock facilitates performance on the Sustained Attention to Response Task, a vigilance test, which probes response inhibition to infrequent nogo stimuli. The present study sought to identify factors that may have contributed to such improved performance, including on- and off-task thinking (assessed with thought probes) and individual differences in attention control, as measured with the Attention Control Scale. Replicating our prior finding, we showed that shock threat significantly reduced errors of commission on the nogo trials. However, we extended this finding in demonstrating that this effect was driven by subjects with low attention control. We therefore confirm that anxiety increases inhibitory control of prepotent responses-a mechanism which is adaptive under threat-and show that this effect is greater in those who rely more upon such prepotent responding, i.e., those with low attentional control. PMID:25899613

  5. Parsing fear: A reassessment of the evidence for fear deficits in psychopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoppenbrouwers, Sylco S; Bulten, Berend H; Brazil, Inti A

    2016-06-01

    Psychopathy is a personality disorder characterized by interpersonal manipulation and callousness, and reckless and impulsive antisocial behavior. It is often seen as a disorder in which profound emotional disturbances lead to antisocial behavior. A lack of fear in particular has been proposed as an etiologically salient factor. In this review, we employ a conceptual model in which fear is parsed into separate subcomponents. Important historical conceptualizations of psychopathy, the neuroscientific and empirical evidence for fear deficits in psychopathy are compared against this model. The empirical evidence is also subjected to a meta-analysis. We conclude that most studies have used the term "fear" generically, amassing different methods and levels of measurement under the umbrella term "fear." Unlike earlier claims that psychopathy is related to general fearlessness, we show there is evidence that psychopathic individuals have deficits in threat detection and responsivity, but that the evidence for reduced subjective experience of fear in psychopathy is far less compelling. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26854867

  6. The vicious cycle of dental fear: exploring the interplay between oral health, service utilization and dental fear

    OpenAIRE

    Spencer A John; Stewart Judy F; Armfield Jason M

    2007-01-01

    Abstract Background Based on the hypothesis that a vicious cycle of dental fear exists, whereby the consequences of fear tend to maintain that fear, the relationship between dental fear, self-reported oral health status and the use of dental services was explored. Methods The study used a telephone interview survey with interviews predominantly conducted in 2002. A random sample of 6,112 Australian residents aged 16 years and over was selected from 13 strata across all States and Territories....

  7. The effects of oxytocin on fear recognition in patients with schizophrenia and in healthy controls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meytal eFischer-Shofty

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Individuals who suffer from schizophrenia often show a marked deficit in recognition of emotional facial expressions, as part of broader impairment of social cognition. Research has shown that recognition of negative emotions, specifically fear recognition, is particularly impaired among patients with schizophrenia. Recently we reported that intranasal administration of OT (IN OT increased the ability to correctly recognize fear in a group of healthy men. The aim of the current study was to examine the effects of IN OT administration on fear recognition among patients with schizophrenia. Based on previous research, we also sought to examine a possible selective effect of OT dependent on baseline performance, hypothesizing that IN OT would have a greater enhancement effect on less proficient individuals. It was thus hypothesized that patients will show more improvement in fear recognition following the administration of IN OT as compared to controls. Sixty six participants (31 schizophrenia patients, 35 healthy controls were enrolled in the current study. All participants received treatment of a single dose of 24 IU IN OT and an equivalent amount of placebo, one week apart. The participants’ ability to accurately recognize fear and happiness was evaluated using a face morphing task. Overall, as a group, both patients and healthy control participants were more accurate in recognizing fearful facial expressions, but not happy faces, following IN OT administration, as compared to their performance following placebo. IN OT did not differentially affect emotion recognition in patients and healthy controls. Yet, the results indicated a selective effect for IN OT, in which the hormone improves fear recognition only among individuals whose baseline performance was below the median, regardless of their psychiatric status.

  8. Early-life object exposure with a habituated mother reduces fear reactions in foals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, Janne Winther

    2016-01-01

    Fear reactions in horses are a major cause of horse-human accidents, and identification of effective pathways for reduction in fearfulness can help decreasing the frequency of accidents. For a young mammal, the mother is one of the most salient aspects of its environment, and she can have a strong influence on her offspring's behaviour. This study investigated whether fearfulness in foals can be reduced through weekly exposure to usually frightening objects with a habituated mother during the first 8 weeks of life. Prior to foaling, mares (N = 22) were habituated to five initially fear-eliciting situations, including exposure to novel stationary and moving objects. At birth, the foals were randomly assigned to either a Demonstration group (N = 11) or a Control group (N = 11). Demonstration mares demonstrated habituation towards the objects to their foals once per week in weeks 1-8 post-partum. Control mares were inside the empty test arena with their foals for the same amount of time. The foals were tested at 8 weeks and 5 months of age in four standardised fear tests. Demonstration foals showed significantly reduced fear responses (behaviour and heart rate) and increased exploratory behaviour at both 8 weeks and 5 months of age. The effect was likely achieved through a combination of maternal transmission and individual learning. It is concluded that fearfulness in foals may be reduced through exposure to frightening objects together with their habituated mother during the first 8 weeks of life. PMID:26395986

  9. Mechanisms of Selective Attention in Generalized Anxiety Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yiend, Jenny; Mathews, Andrew; Burns, Tom; Dutton, Kevin; Fernández-Martín, Andrés; Georgiou, George A.; Luckie, Michael; Rose, Alexandra; Russo, Riccardo; Fox, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    A well-established literature has identified different selective attentional orienting mechanisms underlying anxiety-related attentional bias, such as engagement and disengagement of attention. These mechanisms are thought to contribute to the onset and maintenance of anxiety disorders. However, conclusions to date have relied heavily on experimental work from subclinical samples. We therefore investigated individuals with diagnosed generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), healthy volunteers, and individuals with high trait anxiety (but not meeting GAD diagnostic criteria). Across two experiments we found faster disengagement from negative (angry and fearful) faces in GAD groups, an effect opposite to that expected on the basis of the subclinical literature. Together these data challenge current assumptions that we can generalize, to those with GAD, the pattern of selective attentional orienting to threat found in subclinical groups. We suggest a decisive two-stage experiment identifying stimuli of primary salience in GAD, then using these to reexamine orienting mechanisms across groups. PMID:26504675

  10. New York City HIV superbug: fear or fear not?

    OpenAIRE

    Smith Stephen M

    2005-01-01

    Abstract On February 11, 2005, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene announced that a city resident had recently been infected with a multi-drug resistant form of HIV and rapidly progressed to AIDS. The Health Commissioner, Thomas R. Frieden, called for increased vigilance against this new strain. Is this situation an emerging crisis or simply an unusual case report of rapid HIV progression?

  11. New York City HIV superbug: fear or fear not?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smith Stephen M

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract On February 11, 2005, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene announced that a city resident had recently been infected with a multi-drug resistant form of HIV and rapidly progressed to AIDS. The Health Commissioner, Thomas R. Frieden, called for increased vigilance against this new strain. Is this situation an emerging crisis or simply an unusual case report of rapid HIV progression?

  12. Visual attention capacity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Habekost, Thomas; Starrfelt, Randi

    2009-01-01

    Psychophysical studies have identified two distinct limitations of visual attention capacity: processing speed and apprehension span. Using a simple test, these cognitive factors can be analyzed by Bundesen's Theory of Visual Attention (TVA). The method has strong specificity and sensitivity, and...

  13. AX+, BX- Discrimination Learning in the Fear-Potentiated Startle Paradigm: Possible Relevance to Inhibitory Fear Learning in Extinction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, Karyn M.; Davis, Michael

    2004-01-01

    The neural mechanisms of fear suppression most commonly are studied through the use of extinction, a behavioral procedure in which a feared stimulus (i.e., one previously paired with shock) is nonreinforced repeatedly, leading to a reduction or elimination of the fear response. Although extinction is perhaps the most convenient index of fear…

  14. Dynamics of Media Attention

    CERN Document Server

    Traag, V A; Hicks, J; van Klinken, G

    2014-01-01

    Studies of human attention dynamics analyses how attention is focused on specific topics, issues or people. In online social media, there are clear signs of exogenous shocks, bursty dynamics, and an exponential or powerlaw lifetime distribution. We here analyse the attention dynamics of traditional media, focussing on co-occurrence of people in newspaper articles. The results are quite different from online social networks and attention. Different regimes seem to be operating at two different time scales. At short time scales we see evidence of bursty dynamics and fast decaying edge lifetimes and attention. This behaviour disappears for longer time scales, and in that regime we find Poissonian dynamics and slower decaying lifetimes. We propose that a cascading Poisson process may take place, with issues arising at a constant rate over a long time scale, and faster dynamics at a shorter time scale.

  15. Special Attention Network

    CERN Document Server

    Indekeu, J O

    2003-01-01

    In this Note a social network model for opinion formation is proposed in which a person connected to $q$ partners pays an {\\em attention} $1/q$ to each partner. The mutual attention between two connected persons $i$ and $j$ is taken equal to the geometric mean $1/\\sqrt{q_iq_j}$. Opinion is represented as usual by an Ising spin $s=\\pm 1$ and mutual attention is given through a two-spin coupling $J_{ij} = J Q/\\sqrt{q_iq_j}$, $Q$ being the average connectivity in the network. Connectivity diminishes attention and only persons with low connectivity can pay special attention to each other leading to a durable common (or opposing) opinion. The model is solved in "mean-field" approximation and a critical "temperature" $T_c$ proportional to $JQ$ is found, which is independent of the number of persons $N$, for large $N$.

  16. Fear and time: Fear speeds up the internal clock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fayolle, Sophie; Gil, Sandrine; Droit-Volet, Sylvie

    2015-11-01

    We tested time perception in a bisection task featuring a wide range of durations (from 0.2 to about 8.0s) and highly arousing stimuli (delivery of an electric shock). In addition, self-report questionnaire responses and skin conductance responses were assessed to measure emotional reactivity. Results clearly demonstrated emotion-related time distortion, as stimulus durations were judged to be longer in the trials with an electric shock than in those without one. In addition, this lengthening effect increased with the length of durations. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis of an arousal-induced speeding up of the internal clock system. PMID:26440426

  17. Being feared: masculinity and race in public space

    OpenAIRE

    Kristen Day

    2006-01-01

    Research on fear of crime typically examines the perceptions of those who fear, emphasizing women’s experiences of vulnerability in public space. In this paper, I invert this practice to examine instead men’s experiences of being feared in public spaces. Drawing on interviews with 82 male college students, I use a social constructionist approach to examine how men’s experiences of being feared interact with men’s formation of racial identities and the racialization of public places. Fear is a...

  18. Fear load: The psychophysiological over-expression of fear as an intermediate phenotype associated with trauma reactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norrholm, Seth Davin; Glover, Ebony M; Stevens, Jennifer S; Fani, Negar; Galatzer-Levy, Isaac R; Bradley, Bekh; Ressler, Kerry J; Jovanovic, Tanja

    2015-11-01

    Psychophysiological measures of fear expression provide observable intermediate phenotypes of fear-related symptoms. Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) advocate using neurobiological intermediate phenotypes that provide dimensional correlates of psychopathology. Negative Valence Systems in the RDoC matrix include the construct of acute threat, which can be measured on a physiological level using potentiation of the acoustic startle reflex assessed via electromyography recordings of the orbicularis oculi muscle. Impairments in extinction of fear-potentiated startle due to high levels of fear (termed fear load) during the early phases of extinction have been observed in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The goals of the current work were to examine dimensional associations between fear-related symptoms of PTSD and fear load variables to test their validity as an intermediate phenotype. We examined extinction of fear-potentiated startle in a cohort (n=269) of individuals with a broad range of civilian trauma exposure (range 0-13 traumatic events per person, mean=3.5). Based on previously reported findings, we hypothesized that fear load would be significantly associated with intrusion and fear memories of an index traumatic event. The results indicated that early extinction was correlated with intrusive thoughts (p=0.0007) and intense physiological reactions to trauma reminders (p=0.036). Degree of adult or childhood trauma exposure, and depression severity were not associated with fear load. After controlling for age, sex, race, income, level of prior trauma, and level of fear conditioning, fear load during extinction was still significantly predictive of intrusive thoughts (p=0.004). The significance of these findings is that they support dimensional associations with symptom severity rather than diagnostic category and, as such, fear load may emerge as a transdiagnostic intermediate phenotype expressed across fear-related disorders (e.g., specific phobia, social

  19. Encoding of fear learning and memory in distributed neuronal circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herry, Cyril; Johansen, Joshua P

    2014-12-01

    How sensory information is transformed by learning into adaptive behaviors is a fundamental question in neuroscience. Studies of auditory fear conditioning have revealed much about the formation and expression of emotional memories and have provided important insights into this question. Classical work focused on the amygdala as a central structure for fear conditioning. Recent advances, however, have identified new circuits and neural coding strategies mediating fear learning and the expression of fear behaviors. One area of research has identified key brain regions and neuronal coding mechanisms that regulate the formation, specificity and strength of fear memories. Other work has discovered critical circuits and neuronal dynamics by which fear memories are expressed through a medial prefrontal cortex pathway and coordinated activity across interconnected brain regions. Here we review these recent advances alongside prior work to provide a working model of the extended circuits and neuronal coding mechanisms mediating fear learning and memory. PMID:25413091

  20. Acquisition of blood, injury, and needle fears and phobias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinknecht, R A

    1994-11-01

    The origins of fear and phobia of blood, injury, and injections were investigated in a sample of 128 fearful university students. Based on Mutilation Questionnaire scores, subjects were designated as common fear, high fear, or phobic. Ss reports of their onset experiences obtained from structured interviews were categorized into one or more acquisition pathways of conditioning, vicarious observation, and information. Of the 73% of Ss who recalled one or more onset experiences, 76% reported conditioning-like events as the primary pathway with the majority reporting fear-related UCSs. Vicarious experiences were reported as primary by 20% and 3% reported information as being primary in their fear onset. Severity of fear was unrelated to the pathway by which it was acquired, to whether the onset was recalled, and if recalled, whether it was due to a single or to multiple traumatic events. Results are discussed in terms of methodological problems of memory issues and means by which data are collected. PMID:7993325

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  2. Adolescents' fear of social consequences of academic success as a function of age and sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishiyama, F I; Chabassol, D J

    1985-02-01

    The Fear of Success Consequence Scale (FOSC) was used to assess adolescents' fears of potential social consequences of academic success in three dimensions, i.e., negative social reaction, positive peer reaction, and increased pressure and responsibility for continuous success. Subjects were 360 students in early adolescence (grades 7-9) and mid-adolescence (grades 10-12) in three urban British Columbia areas. Two hypotheses were supported: (1) that fear of academic success is higher among early adolescents than among mid-adolescents; (2) that girls generally have higher fear of academic success than do boys. Significant sex differences were found among early adolescents but not among mid-adolescents. While general sex differences were consistent with Horner's prediction, the findings of lower fear of success consequences among older adolescents than among younger ones, and the absence of significant sex difference among mid-adolescents, were contrary to Horner's prediction. Possible explanations for these findings are considered. Suggestions for further research are mentioned. PMID:24301042

  3. Attentional modulation of motion-induced blindness

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GENG HaiYan; SONG QianLan; LI YunFeng; XU Shan; ZHU Ying

    2007-01-01

    When a global moving pattern is superimposed on high-contrast stationary or slowly moving stimuli,the stimuli can be perceived as disappearing and reappearing alternately for periods of several seconds. This visual illusory phenomenon was named "motion-induced blindness" (MIB) in recent literature. So far there is no consensus on the mechanism of MIB, especially on the role of attention in this phenomenon. To examine the effect of spatial attention on MIB, the present study manipulated the participants' spatial attention by asking them to respond to two targets simultaneously presented in bilateral visual fields (the divided-attention condition) or only respond to one of them (the focused-attention condition). A central arrow was presented as an endogenous cue to index the target visual field in the focused-attention condition, while a point was presented instead in the divided-attention condition. The results show that the percentage of accumulated invisibility period was larger for the targets in the focused-attention condition than for those in the divided-attention condition.This effect of attentionis significant in upper visual field (UVF) and left lower visual field (left LVF); that is, this effect shows a hemispheric asymmetry in LVF but not in UVF. Furthermore, the percentage of accumulated invisibility period was larger for targets in left LVF than for those in right LVF in the focused-attention condition, but no hemispheric asymmetry was found in the divided-attention condition.In addition, the increased percentage of accumulated invisibility period in the focused-attention condition originated merely in the enhancement of the mean phase duration of disappearance in LVF, while the disappearance occurred more frequently and lasted longer for each occurrence, which led to an increase in the total invisibility period, in the focused- than divided-attention condition in UVF. These results suggest that the modulation of spatial attention on MIB has different

  4. Human fear acquisition deficits in relation to genetic variants of the corticotropin releasing hormone receptor 1 and the serotonin transporter.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivo Heitland

    Full Text Available The ability to identify predictors of aversive events allows organisms to appropriately respond to these events, and failure to acquire these fear contingencies can lead to maladaptive contextual anxiety. Recently, preclinical studies demonstrated that the corticotropin-releasing factor and serotonin systems are interactively involved in adaptive fear acquisition. Here, 150 healthy medication-free human subjects completed a cue and context fear conditioning procedure in a virtual reality environment. Fear potentiation of the eyeblink startle reflex (FPS was measured to assess both uninstructed fear acquisition and instructed fear expression. All participants were genotyped for polymorphisms located within regulatory regions of the corticotropin releasing hormone receptor 1 (CRHR1 - rs878886 and the serotonin transporter (5HTTLPR. These polymorphisms have previously been linked to panic disorder and anxious symptomology and personality, respectively. G-allele carriers of CRHR1 (rs878886 showed no acquisition of fear conditioned responses (FPS to the threat cue in the uninstructed phase, whereas fear acquisition was present in C/C homozygotes. Moreover, carrying the risk alleles of both rs878886 (G-allele and 5HTTLPR (short allele was associated with increased FPS to the threat context during this phase. After explicit instructions regarding the threat contingency were given, the cue FPS and context FPS normalized in all genotype groups. The present results indicate that genetic variability in the corticotropin-releasing hormone receptor 1, especially in interaction with the 5HTTLPR, is involved in the acquisition of fear in humans. This translates prior animal findings to the human realm.

  5. Learning to Pay Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Slagter, Heleen A.; LUTZ, ANTOINE; Greischar, Lawrence L; Francis, Andrew D; Nieuwenhuis, Sander; Davis, James M.; Davidson, Richard J.

    2007-01-01

    The information processing capacity of the human mind is limited, as is evidenced by the so-called “attentional-blink” deficit: When two targets (T1 and T2) embedded in a rapid stream of events are presented in close temporal proximity, the second target is often not seen. This deficit is believed to result from competition between the two targets for limited attentional resources. Here we show, using performance in an attentional-blink task and scalp-recorded brain potentials, that meditatio...

  6. Fearful contextual expression impairs the encoding and recognition of target faces: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Huiyan; Schulz, Claudia; Straube, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Previous event-related potential (ERP) studies have shown that the N170 to faces is modulated by the emotion of the face and its context. However, it is unclear how the encoding of emotional target faces as reflected in the N170 is modulated by the preceding contextual facial expression when temporal onset and identity of target faces are unpredictable. In addition, no study as yet has investigated whether contextual facial expression modulates later recognition of target faces. To address these issues, participants in the present study were asked to identify target faces (fearful or neutral) that were presented after a sequence of fearful or neutral contextual faces. The number of sequential contextual faces was random and contextual and target faces were of different identities so that temporal onset and identity of target faces were unpredictable. Electroencephalography (EEG) data was recorded during the encoding phase. Subsequently, participants had to perform an unexpected old/new recognition task in which target face identities were presented in either the encoded or the non-encoded expression. ERP data showed a reduced N170 to target faces in fearful as compared to neutral context regardless of target facial expression. In the later recognition phase, recognition rates were reduced for target faces in the encoded expression when they had been encountered in fearful as compared to neutral context. The present findings suggest that fearful compared to neutral contextual faces reduce the allocation of attentional resources towards target faces, which results in limited encoding and recognition of target faces. PMID:26388751

  7. Fearful contextual expression impairs the encoding and recognition of target faces: an ERP study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huiyan eLin

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Previous event-related potential (ERP studies have shown that the N170 to faces is modulated by the emotion of the face and its context. However, it is unclear how the encoding of emotional target faces as reflected in the N170 is modulated by the preceding contextual facial expression when temporal onset and identity of target faces are unpredictable. In addition, no study as yet has investigated whether contextual facial expression modulates later recognition of target faces. To address these issues, participants in the present study were asked to identify target faces (fearful or neutral that were presented after a sequence of fearful or neutral contextual faces. The number of sequential contextual faces was random and contextual and target faces were of different identities so that temporal onset and identity of target faces were unpredictable. Electroencephalography (EEG data was recorded during the encoding phase. Subsequently, participants had to perform an unexpected old/new recognition task in which target face identities were presented in either the encoded or the non-encoded expression. ERP data showed a reduced N170 to target faces in fearful as compared to neutral context regardless of target facial expression. In the later recognition phase, recognition rates were reduced for target faces in the encoded expression when they had been encountered in fearful as compared to neutral context. The present findings suggest that fearful compared to neutral contextual faces reduce the allocation of attentional resources towards target faces, which results in limited encoding and recognition of target faces.

  8. Genetics of PTSD: Fear Conditioning as a Model for Future Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amstadter, Ananda B; Nugent, Nicole R; Koenen, Karestan C

    2009-06-01

    In the last decade, the number of publications in psychiatric genetics has nearly tripled but little attention has been paid to the role of genetic factors in the etiology of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The present review summarizes the current state of genetic research on PTSD. First, we outline information regarding genetic influences provided by family investigations and by twin studies. Second, we propose the fear-conditioning model of PTSD as a framework for the nomination of candidate genes that may be related to the disorder. Third, we review lines of evidence from three neurobiological systems involved in fear conditioning, and we summarize published investigations of genetic variants studied in association with PTSD in these three systems. Finally, we review gene-by-environment interaction research, a promising novel approach to genetic research in PTSD. PMID:19779593

  9. The α1 adrenoceptor antagonist prazosin enhances sleep continuity in fear-conditioned Wistar-Kyoto rats

    OpenAIRE

    Laitman, Benjamin M.; Gajewski, Nicholas D.; Mann, Graziella L.; KUBIN, Leszek; Morrison, Adrian R.; Ross, Richard J.

    2013-01-01

    Fragmentation of rapid eye movement sleep (REMS) is well described in individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and likely has significant functional consequences. Fear-conditioned rodents may offer an attractive model of the changes in sleep that characterize PTSD. Following fear conditioning (FC), Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats, a strain known to be particularly stress-sensitive, have increased REMS fragmentation that can be quantified as a shift in the distribution of REMS episodes to...

  10. Extinction of Remotely Acquired Fear Depends on an Inhibitory NR2B/PKA Pathway in the Retrosplenial Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Corcoran, Kevin A.; Leaderbrand, Katherine; Radulovic, Jelena

    2013-01-01

    As memories age, their processing increasingly relies upon cortical rather than hippocampal circuits, but the adaptive significance and mechanisms of this shift are not fully understood. Here we investigated the behavioral features and cortical mechanisms underlying extinction of remotely versus recently acquired context fear in mice. Behaviorally, extinction and reinstatement were similar, but re-extinction of remote fear was significantly faster, suggesting time-dependent engagement of mech...

  11. Fear recognition in the voice is modulated by unconsciously recognized facial expressions but not by unconsciously recognized affective pictures

    OpenAIRE

    de Gelder, B.; Pourtois, G.R.C.; Weiskrantz, L

    2002-01-01

    Multisensory integration is a powerful mechanism for increasing adaptive responses, as illustrated by binding of fear expressed in a face with fear present in a voice. To understand the role of awareness in intersensory integration of affective information we studied multisensory integration under conditions of conscious and nonconscious processing of the visual component of an audiovisual stimulus pair. Auditory-event-related potentials were measured in two patients (GY and DB) who were unab...

  12. Dissemination of an Evidence-based Program to Reduce Fear of Falling, South Carolina, 2006-2009

    OpenAIRE

    Ullmann, Gerhild; Williams, Harriet G.; Plass, Cora F.

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Falls among older adults are a serious public health issue, and fear of falling can limit mobility, which in turn increases fall risk. A Matter of Balance/Volunteer Lay Leader Model is an evidence-based program designed to address fear of falling. The objective of this study was to describe implementation, dissemination, and outcomes of this program in 3 regions of South Carolina with a predominantly African American and largely underserved population. Methods We developed partne...

  13. Fearful symmetry in aposematic plants

    OpenAIRE

    Lev-Yadun, Simcha

    2011-01-01

    Symmetry has been proposed to increase the efficiency of visual aposematic displays in animals, and I suggest that it may also be true for many aposematic spiny or poisonous plants. For instance, in the very spiny plant taxa cacti, Aloe sp., Agave sp. and Euphorbia sp., which have been proposed to be aposematic because of their colorful spine system, the shoots, and in cacti, the spiny fruits as well, are usually radially symmetric. Moreover, in the radial symmetric shoots of Agave and Aloe t...

  14. Rollers smell the fear of nestlings

    OpenAIRE

    Parejo, D.; Amo, L.; Rodríguez, J.; Avilés, J. M.

    2012-01-01

    Many animals react to danger by producing chemical cues that can be smelled by others, which is called the smell of fear. Some bird species produce chemical compounds when threatened, such as nestlings of the Eurasian roller Coracias garrulus that vomit an odorous orange liquid when scared in their nests. Here, we experimentally explore the possibility that parents were informed about recent predation attempts at their nests through the olfaction of this vomit. Parents of nests treated with n...

  15. Changing Fear: The Neurocircuitry of Emotion Regulation

    OpenAIRE

    Hartley, Catherine A.; Phelps, Elizabeth A.

    2009-01-01

    The ability to alter emotional responses as circumstances change is a critical component of normal adaptive behavior and is often impaired in psychological disorders. In this review, we discuss four emotional regulation techniques that have been investigated as means to control fear: extinction, cognitive regulation, active coping, and reconsolidation. For each technique, we review what is known about the underlying neural systems, combining findings from animal models and human neuroscience....

  16. False Context Fear Memory in Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Sarah; Holmes, Nathan M.; Westbrook, R. Frederick

    2015-01-01

    Four experiments used rats to study false context fear memories. In Experiment 1, rats were pre-exposed to a distinctive chamber (context A) or to a control environment (context C), shocked after a delay in a second chamber (context B) and tested either in B or A. Rats pre-exposed to A froze just as much as control rats in B but more than control…

  17. Prefrontal control of attention to threat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peers, Polly V; Simons, Jon S; Lawrence, Andrew D

    2013-01-01

    Attentional control refers to the regulatory processes that ensure that our actions are in accordance with our goals. Dual-system accounts view temperament as consisting of both individual variation in emotionality (e.g., trait anxiety) and variation in regulatory attentional mechanisms that act to modulate emotionality. Increasing evidence links trait variation in attentional control to clinical mood and anxiety disorder symptoms, independent of trait emotionality. Attentional biases to threat have been robustly linked to mood and anxiety disorders. However, the role of variation in attentional control in influencing such biases, and the neural underpinnings of trait variation in attentional control, are unknown. Here, we show that individual differences in trait attentional control, even when accounting for trait and state anxiety, are related to the magnitude of an attentional blink (AB) following threat-related targets. Moreover, we demonstrate that activity in dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), is observed specifically in relation to control of attention over threatening stimuli, in line with neural theories of attentional control, such as guided activation theory. These results have key implications for neurocognitive theories of attentional bias and emotional resilience. PMID:23386824

  18. Prefrontal control of attention to threat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Polly V Peers

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Attentional control refers to the regulatory processes that ensure that our actions are in accordance with our goals. Dual-system accounts view temperament as consisting of both individual variation in emotionality (e.g. trait anxiety and variation in regulatory attentional mechanisms that act to modulate emotionality. Increasing evidence links trait variation in attentional control to clinical mood and anxiety disorder symptoms, independent of trait emotionality. Attentional biases to threat have been robustly linked to mood and anxiety disorders. However, the role of variation in attentional control in influencing such biases, and the neural underpinnings of trait variation in attentional control, are unknown. Here, we show, that individual differences in trait attentional control, even when accounting for trait and state anxiety, are related to the magnitude of an attentional blink following threat-related targets. Moreover, we demonstrate that activity in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, is observed specifically in relation to control of attention over threatening stimuli, in line with neural theories of attentional control, such as guided activation theory. These results have key implications for neurocognitive theories of attentional bias and emotional resilience.

  19. Attentional modulation of emotional conflict processing with flanker tasks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pingyan Zhou

    Full Text Available Emotion processing has been shown to acquire priority by biasing allocation of attentional resources. Aversive images or fearful expressions are processed quickly and automatically. Many existing findings suggested that processing of emotional information was pre-attentive, largely immune from attentional control. Other studies argued that attention gated the processing of emotion. To tackle this controversy, the current study examined whether and to what degrees attention modulated processing of emotion using a stimulus-response-compatibility (SRC paradigm. We conducted two flanker experiments using color scale faces in neutral expressions or gray scale faces in emotional expressions. We found SRC effects for all three dimensions (color, gender, and emotion and SRC effects were larger when the conflicts were task relevant than when they were task irrelevant, suggesting that conflict processing of emotion was modulated by attention, similar to those of color and face identity (gender. However, task modulation on color SRC effect was significantly greater than that on gender or emotion SRC effect, indicating that processing of salient information was modulated by attention to a lesser degree than processing of non-emotional stimuli. We proposed that emotion processing can be influenced by attentional control, but at the same time salience of emotional information may bias toward bottom-up processing, rendering less top-down modulation than that on non-emotional stimuli.

  20. TRPC3 channels critically regulate hippocampal excitability and contextual fear memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuner, Sarah M; Wilmott, Lynda A; Hope, Kevin A; Hoffmann, Brian; Chong, Jayhong A; Abramowitz, Joel; Birnbaumer, Lutz; O'Connell, Kristen M; Tryba, Andrew K; Greene, Andrew S; Savio Chan, C; Kaczorowski, Catherine C

    2015-03-15

    Memory formation requires de novo protein synthesis, and memory disorders may result from misregulated synthesis of critical proteins that remain largely unidentified. Plasma membrane ion channels and receptors are likely candidates given their role in regulating neuron excitability, a candidate memory mechanism. Here we conduct targeted molecular monitoring and quantitation of hippocampal plasma membrane proteins from mice with intact or impaired contextual fear memory to identify putative candidates. Here we report contextual fear memory deficits correspond to increased Trpc3 gene and protein expression, and demonstrate TRPC3 regulates hippocampal neuron excitability associated with memory function. These data provide a mechanistic explanation for enhanced contextual fear memory reported herein following knockdown of TRPC3 in hippocampus. Collectively, TRPC3 modulates memory and may be a feasible target to enhance memory and treat memory disorders. PMID:25513972

  1. The relationship between health risk behaviors and fear in one urban seventh grade class.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowdell, Elizabeth Burgess; Santucci, Mary Ellen

    2003-06-01

    A descriptive, correlational study was undertaken with 54 urban, 7th graders (age, 11-13 y) from one class. By using the Youth Risk Behaviors Surveillance System Questionnaire (YRBSS), information was collected about health risk behaviors as well as unintentional and intentional injury. Findings indicate that these adolescent students have significant fears related to their environment; they are fearful of being hurt. These students also reported increased incidence of health risk behaviors including alcohol use, carrying weapons, and staying up late at night. The findings suggest a need to understand how adolescents channel fear of harm to self into other unhealthy behaviors. Nurses are often in an ideal position to assess the health and behaviors of adolescents and to offer education, health promotion, and support to this at-risk population. PMID:12796861

  2. Effects of goal setting on fear of failure in young elite athletes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wikman, Johan Michael; Stelter, Reinhard; Melzer, Marcus;

    2014-01-01

    This study reports the effects of a goal-setting intervention on fear of failure in young elite athletes. Using the hierarchical model of approach and avoidance motivation as a theoretical vantage point, a goal-setting intervention using mastery-approach goals and existing goalsetting...... recommendations was used as intervention. The goal-setting group (n = 33) attended 12 weekly, one-hour goal-setting sessions, while the control group (n = 16) did not. A Danish version of the short form of the Achievement Motives Scale-Sport was tested with a confirmatory factor analysis and showed good fit. It...... was used to measure fear of failure at baseline, at the end of intervention and at follow-up, 12 weeks after intervention had ended. Results showed that in the goal-setting group, fear of failure decreased significantly from baseline to end of intervention, but increased again from end of intervention...

  3. Brain c-Fos immunocytochemistry and cytochrome oxidase histochemistry after a fear conditioning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conejo, Nélida M; González Pardo, Héctor; López, Matías; Cantora, Raúl; Arias, Jorge L

    2007-05-01

    The involvement of the basolateral and the medial amygdala in fear conditioning was evaluated using different markers of neuronal activation. The method described here is a combination of cytochrome oxidase (CO) histochemistry and c-Fos immunocytochemistry on fresh frozen brain sections. Freezing behavior was used as an index of auditory and contextual fear conditioning. As expected, freezing scores were significantly higher in rats exposed to tone-shock pairings in a distinctive environment (conditioned; COND), as compared to rats that did not receive any shocks (UNCD). CO labeling was increased in the basolateral and medial amygdala of the COND group. Conversely, c-Fos expression in the basolateral and medial amygdala was lower in the COND group as compared to the UNCD group. Furthermore, c-Fos expression was particularly high in the medial amygdala of the UNCD group. The data provided by both techniques indicate that these amygdalar nuclei could play different roles on auditory and contextual fear conditioning. PMID:17425902

  4. Protocol for studying extinction of conditioned fear in naturally cycling female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeng, Lisa Y; Cover, Kara K; Landau, Aaron J; Milad, Mohammed R; Lebron-Milad, Kelimer

    2015-01-01

    Extinction of conditioned fear has been extensively studied in male rodents. Recently, there have been an increasing number of studies indicating that neural mechanisms for certain behavioral tasks and response behaviors are different in females and males. Using females in research studies can represent a challenge because of the variation of gonadal hormones during their estrous cycle. This protocol describes well-established procedures that are useful in investigating the role of estrogen in fear extinction memory consolidation in female rats. Phase of the estrous cycle and exogenous estrogen administration prior to extinction training can influence extinction recall 24 hr later. The vaginal swabbing technique for estrous phase identification described here aids the examination and manipulation of naturally cycling gonadal hormones. The use of this basic rodent model may further delineate the mechanisms by which estrogen can modulate fear extinction memory in females. PMID:25741747

  5. Fear of childbirth and emergency caesarean section in low-risk nulliparous women

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jespersen, Cecilie; Hegaard, Hanne Kristine; Schroll, Anne-Mette;

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To assess the association between fear of childbirth (FOC) and emergency caesarean section. DESIGN: A prospective cohort study of low-risk nulliparous women at term. SETTING: Nine obstetric departments in Denmark, May 2004-July 2005. POPULATION: A total of 2598 nulliparous women in...... recorded by the attending staff. Logistic regression analyses were used to estimate unadjusted and adjusted odds ratios (OR). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Risk of emergency caesarean section in women who feared childbirth. RESULTS: FOC (W-DEQ sum score ≥ 85 and DFS sum score ≥ 70) was not associated with...... emergency caesarean section: adjusted OR = 0.81 (95% CI: 0.48-1.36) and OR = 0.97 (95% CI: 0.55-1.71), respectively. CONCLUSION: In this prospective observational study, women with FOC did not have an increased risk of emergency caesarean section compared to women with no such fear....

  6. Abnormal fear conditioning and amygdala processing in an animal model of autism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Markram, Kamila; Rinaldi, Tania; La Mendola, Deborah;

    2008-01-01

    -treated animals displayed several symptoms common to autism, among them impaired social interactions and increased repetitive behaviors. Furthermore, VPA-treated rats were more anxious and exhibited abnormally high and longer lasting fear memories, which were overgeneralized and harder to extinguish. On the...... cellular level, the amygdala was hyperreactive to electrical stimulation and displayed boosted synaptic plasticity as well as a deficit in inhibition. We show for the first time enhanced, overgeneralized and resistant conditioned fear memories in an animal model of autism. Such hyperfear could be caused by...

  7. Tactile Stimulation Reduces Fear in Fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annett Schirmer

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Being groomed or touched can counter stress and negative affect in mammals. In two experiments we explored whether a similar phenomenon exists in non-mammals like zebrafish. In Experiment 1, we exposed zebrafish to a natural stressor, a chemical alarm signal released by injured conspecifics. Before moving them into an observation tank, one group of fish was washed and then subjected to a water current that served as the tactile stimulus. The other group was simply washed. Fish with tactile treatment demonstrated fewer fear behaviors (e.g., bottom dwelling and lower cortisol levels than fish without. In Experiment 2, we ascertained a role of somatosensation in these effects. Using a similar paradigm as in Experiment 1, we recorded fear behaviors of intact fish and fish with damaged lateral line hair cells. Relative to the former, the latter benefited less from the tactile stimulus during fear recovery. Together these findings show that tactile stimulation can calm fish and that tactile receptors, evolutionarily older than those present in mammals, contribute to this phenomenon.

  8. Attention samples stimuli rhythmically.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landau, Ayelet Nina; Fries, Pascal

    2012-06-01

    Overt exploration or sampling behaviors, such as whisking, sniffing, and saccadic eye movements, are often characterized by a rhythm. In addition, the electrophysiologically recorded theta or alpha phase predicts global detection performance. These two observations raise the intriguing possibility that covert selective attention samples from multiple stimuli rhythmically. To investigate this possibility, we measured change detection performance on two simultaneously presented stimuli, after resetting attention to one of them. After a reset flash at one stimulus location, detection performance fluctuated rhythmically. When the flash was presented in the right visual field, a 4 Hz rhythm was directly visible in the time courses of behavioral performance at both stimulus locations, and the two rhythms were in antiphase. A left visual field flash exerted only partial reset on performance and induced rhythmic fluctuation at higher frequencies (6-10 Hz). These findings show that selective attention samples multiple stimuli rhythmically, and they position spatial attention within the family of exploration behaviors. PMID:22633805

  9. Attention enhances feature integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Liza; Schyns, Philippe G

    2003-08-01

    Perceptual processing delays between attribute dimensions (e.g. color, form and motion) [Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B 264 (1997) 1407] have been attributed to temporal processing asynchronies resulting from functional segregation of visual information [Science 240 (1988) 740]. In addition, several lines of evidence converge to suggest that attention plays an important role in the integration of functionally processed information. However, exactly how attention modulates the temporal integration of information remains unclear. Here, we examined how attention modulates the integration of color and form into a unitary perception. Results suggest that attending to the location of an object enhances the integration of its defining attributes by speeding up the perceptual processing of each attribute dimension. Moreover, the perceptual asynchrony between attributes remains constant across attended and unattended conditions because attention seems to offer each processing dimension an equal processing advantage. PMID:12826102

  10. Controlled cortical impact before or after fear conditioning does not affect fear extinction in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sierra-Mercado, Demetrio; McAllister, Lauren M; Lee, Christopher C H; Milad, Mohammed R; Eskandar, Emad N; Whalen, Michael J

    2015-05-01

    Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized in part by impaired extinction of conditioned fear. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is thought to be a risk factor for development of PTSD. We tested the hypothesis that controlled cortical impact (CCI) would impair extinction of fear learned by Pavlovian conditioning, in mice. To mimic the scenarios in which TBI occurs prior to or after exposure to an aversive event, severe CCI was delivered to the left parietal cortex at one of two time points: (1) Prior to fear conditioning, or (2) after conditioning. Delay auditory conditioning was achieved by pairing a tone with a foot shock in "context A". Extinction training involved the presentation of tones in a different context (context B) in the absence of foot shock. Test for extinction memory was achieved by presentation of additional tones alone in context B over the following two days. In pre- or post-injury paradigms, CCI did not influence fear learning and extinction. Furthermore, CCI did not affect locomotor activity or elevated plus maze testing. Our results demonstrate that, within the time frame studied, CCI does not impair the acquisition and expression of conditioned fear or extinction memory. PMID:25721797

  11. Characterization of fear conditioning and fear extinction by analysis of electrodermal activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faghih, Rose T; Stokes, Patrick A; Marin, Marie-France; Zsido, Rachel G; Zorowitz, Sam; Rosenbaum, Blake L; Huijin Song; Milad, Mohammed R; Dougherty, Darin D; Eskandar, Emad N; Widge, Alik S; Brown, Emery N; Barbieri, Riccardo

    2015-08-01

    Electrodermal activity (EDA) is a measure of physical arousal, which is frequently measured during psychophysical tasks relevant for anxiety disorders. Recently, specific protocols and procedures have been devised in order to examine the neural mechanisms of fear conditioning and extinction. EDA reflects important responses associated with stimuli specifically administrated during these procedures. Although several previous studies have demonstrated the reproducibility of measures estimated from EDA, a mathematical framework associated with the stimulus-response experiments in question and, at the same time, including the underlying emotional state of the subject during fear conditioning and/or extinction experiments is not well studied. We here propose an ordinary differential equation model based on sudomotor nerve activity, and estimate the fear eliciting stimulus using a compressed sensing algorithm. Our results show that we are able to recover the underlying stimulus (visual cue or mild electrical shock). Moreover, relating the time-delay in the estimated stimulation to the visual cue during extinction period shows that fear level decreases as visual cues are presented without shock, suggesting that this feature might be used to estimate the fear state. These findings indicate that a mathematical model based on electrodermal responses might be critical in defining a low-dimensional representation of essential cognitive features in order to describe dynamic behavioral states. PMID:26738104

  12. Iconic memory requires attention

    OpenAIRE

    Persuh, Marjan; Genzer, Boris; Melara, Robert D.

    2012-01-01

    Two experiments investigated whether attention plays a role in iconic memory, employing either a change detection paradigm (Experiment 1) or a partial-report paradigm (Experiment 2). In each experiment, attention was taxed during initial display presentation, focusing the manipulation on consolidation of information into iconic memory, prior to transfer into working memory. Observers were able to maintain high levels of performance (accuracy of change detection or categorization) even when co...

  13. Modelling imperfect attention

    OpenAIRE

    Manzini, Paola; Mariotti, Marco

    2015-01-01

    We propose a novel method to model an agent who is imperfectly attentive in the sense that she may consider only some of the alternatives available. Our methodology departs from the standard 'revealed preference' one: we make plausible assumptions on the values to the imperfectly attentive agent of different choice situations. We derive in this way a simple reduced-form model that is compatible with several cognitive processes underlying choice: the agent stochastically forms a consideration ...

  14. Switch Attention to Listen

    OpenAIRE

    Dhamani, Imran; Leung, Johahn; Carlile, Simon; Sharma, Mridula

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this research was to evaluate the ability to switch attention and selectively attend to relevant information in children (10–15 years) with persistent listening difficulties in noisy environments. A wide battery of clinical tests indicated that children with complaints of listening difficulties had otherwise normal hearing sensitivity and auditory processing skills. Here we show that these children are markedly slower to switch their attention compared to their age-matched peers. T...

  15. Genetic Basis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Nihal Yurteri; A. Evren Tufan; Gizem Melissa Akgun; Ayten Erdogan

    2011-01-01

    Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neuropsychiatric disorders of childhood. Due to studies reporting that the effects of ADHD diagnosis on functioning may last throughout life, this disorder, which has great importance for child and adolescent psychiatry, started to attract greater attention recently in terms of adult psychiatry. A review, evaluating the results of studies conducted on the genetic basis of ADHD, which started to attract increasing attent...

  16. Cognition, emotion, and attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller-Oehring, Eva M; Schulte, Tilman

    2014-01-01

    Deficits of attention, emotion, and cognition occur in individuals with alcohol abuse and addiction. This review elucidates the concepts of attention, emotion, and cognition and references research on the underlying neural networks and their compromise in alcohol use disorder. Neuroimaging research on adolescents with family history of alcoholism contributes to the understanding of pre-existing brain structural conditions and characterization of cognition and attention processes in high-risk individuals. Attention and cognition interact with other brain functions, including perceptual selection, salience, emotion, reward, and memory, through interconnected neural networks. Recent research reports compromised microstructural and functional network connectivity in alcoholism, which can have an effect on the dynamic tuning between brain systems, e.g., the frontally based executive control system, the limbic emotion system, and the midbrain-striatal reward system, thereby impeding cognitive flexibility and behavioral adaptation to changing environments. Finally, we introduce concepts of functional compensation, the capacity to generate attentional resources for performance enhancement, and brain structure recovery with abstinence. An understanding of the neural mechanisms of attention, emotion, and cognition will likely provide the basis for better treatment strategies for developing skills that enhance alcoholism therapy adherence and quality of life, and reduce the propensity for relapse. PMID:25307584

  17. Attention allocation before antisaccades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klapetek, Anna; Jonikaitis, Donatas; Deubel, Heiner

    2016-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated the distribution of attention before antisaccades. We used a dual task paradigm, in which participants made prosaccades or antisaccades and discriminated the orientation of a visual probe shown at the saccade goal, the visual cue location (antisaccade condition), or a neutral location. Moreover, participants indicated whether they had made a correct antisaccade or an erroneous prosaccade. We observed that, while spatial attention in the prosaccade task was allocated only to the saccade goal, attention in the antisaccade task was allocated both to the cued location and to the antisaccade goal. This suggests parallel attentional selection of the cued and antisaccade locations. We further observed that in error trials--in which participants made an incorrect prosaccade instead of an antisaccade--spatial attention was biased towards the prosaccade goal. These erroneous prosaccades were mostly unnoticed and were often followed by corrective antisaccades with very short latencies (programming of the reflexive prosaccade to the cue and the antisaccade to the intended location. Taken together, our results suggest that attention allocation and saccade goal selection in the antisaccade task are mediated by a common competitive process. PMID:26790843

  18. Interocular conflict attracts attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paffen, Chris L E; Hessels, Roy S; Van der Stigchel, Stefan

    2012-02-01

    During binocular rivalry, perception alternates.between dissimilar images presented dichoptically. Since.its discovery, researchers have debated whether the phenomenon is subject to attentional control. While it is now clear that attentional control over binocular rivalry is possible, the opposite is less evident: Is interocular conflict (i.e., the situation leading to binocular rivalry) able to attract attention?In order to answer this question, we used a change blindness paradigm in which observers looked for salient changes in two alternating frames depicting natural scenes. Each frame contained two images: one for the left and one for the right eye. Changes occurring in a single image (monocular) were detected faster than those occurring in both images (binocular). In addition,monocular change detection was also faster than detection in fused versions of the changed and unchanged regions. These results show that interocular conflict is capable of attracting attention, since it guides visual attention toward salient changes that otherwise would remain unnoticed for longer. The results of a second experiment indicated that interocular conflict attracts attention during the first phase of presentation, a phase during which the stimulus is abnormally fused [added]. PMID:22167536

  19. Gaze cuing of attention in snake phobic women: the influence of facial expression

    OpenAIRE

    Pletti, Carolina; Dalmaso, Mario; Sarlo, Michela; Galfano, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    Only a few studies investigated whether animal phobics exhibit attentional biases in contexts where no phobic stimuli are present. Among these, recent studies provided evidence for a bias toward facial expressions of fear and disgust in animal phobics. Such findings may be due to the fact that these expressions could signal the presence of a phobic object in the surroundings. To test this hypothesis and further investigate attentional biases for emotional faces in animal phobics, we conducted...

  20. Estradiol replacement enhances fear memory formation, impairs extinction and reduces COMT expression levels in the hippocampus of ovariectomized female mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDermott, Carmel M; Liu, Dan; Ade, Catherine; Schrader, Laura A

    2015-02-01

    Females experience depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety disorders at approximately twice the rate of males, but the mechanisms underlying this difference remain undefined. The effect of sex hormones on neural substrates presents a possible mechanism. We investigated the effect of ovariectomy at two ages, before puberty and in adulthood, and 17β-estradiol (E2) replacement administered chronically in drinking water on anxiety level, fear memory formation, and extinction. Based on previous studies, we hypothesized that estradiol replacement would impair fear memory formation and enhance extinction rate. Females, age 4 weeks and 10 weeks, were divided randomly into 4 groups; sham surgery, OVX, OVX+low E2 (200nM), and OVX+high E2 (1000nM). Chronic treatment with high levels of E2 significantly increased anxiety levels measured in the elevated plus maze. In both age groups, high levels of E2 significantly increased contextual fear memory but had no effect on cued fear memory. In addition, high E2 decreased the rate of extinction in both ages. Finally, catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is important for regulation of catecholamine levels, which play a role in fear memory formation and extinction. COMT expression in the hippocampus was significantly reduced by high E2 replacement, implying increased catecholamine levels in the hippocampus of high E2 mice. These results suggest that estradiol enhanced fear memory formation, and inhibited fear memory extinction, possibly stabilizing the fear memory in female mice. This study has implications for a neurobiological mechanism for PTSD and anxiety disorders. PMID:25555360