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Sample records for ulcerogenic stimuli induced

  1. Structural damage and changes in eicosanoid metabolites in the gastric mucosa of rats and pigs induced by anti-inflammatory drugs of varying ulcerogenicity.

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    Rainsford, K D

    1986-01-01

    The object of the studies reviewed here has been to correlate the time-course of ultrastructural changes induced by oral administration of a range of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAI) drugs with effects on eicosanoid metabolism and drug absorption, so as to discriminate what biochemical/cellular and pharmacological factors account for their varying ulcerogenicity. Oral administration of highly ulcerogenic drugs (e.g. aspirin, diclofenac, indomethacin, piroxicam) to rats causes rapid damage to surface and gastric mucous cells, selective parietal cell damage, and extensive disruption of endothelial cells of submucosal microcapillaries (especially with aspirin) with accompanying extravasation of blood cell components. These changes are coincident with depressed levels of PGE2/6-keto-PGF1 alpha (measured by GC/MS or RIA) and uptake of the drugs (measured by scintillation counting or HPLC). Low ulcerogenic NSAI drugs (e.g. azapropazone, benoxaprofen and fenclofenac) causes very little damage to the surface mucosal cells. Azapropazone has been found to be well absorbed, and benoxaprofen and fenclofenac somewhat more slowly, so for the latter two drugs their low rate of absorption might also be a factor in their reduced ulcerogenicity. Aspirin, azapropazone and benoxaprofen have been shown to reduce 5-HETE levels (RIA), although the latter two drugs were more effective than aspirin. Thus, they result in the inhibition of PG production, by cyclo-oxygenase inhibition (with potential adverse effects from excess oxyradical and/or production of HETE's) with inhibition of the lipoxygenase pathway. The time-sequence of changes induced by single oral doses of indomethacin or other NSAI drugs on the ultrastructure and the prostanoid metabolism of the pig gastric mucosa parallelled those seen in the rat. Attempts to determine whether co-administration of NSAI drugs might reduce the inhibition of PG cyclo-oxygenase by more potent inhibitors (e.g. indomethacin) have been

  2. Physiological responses induced by pleasant stimuli.

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    Watanuki, Shigeki; Kim, Yeon-Kyu

    2005-01-01

    The specific physiological responses induced by pleasant stimuli were investigated in this study. Various physiological responses of the brain (encephaloelectrogram; EEG), autonomic nervous system (ANS), immune system and endocrine system were monitored when pleasant stimuli such as odors, emotional pictures and rakugo, a typical Japanese comical story-telling, were presented to subjects. The results revealed that (i) EEG activities of the left frontal brain region were enhanced by a pleasant odor; (ii) emotional pictures related to primitive element such as nudes and erotic couples elevated vasomotor sympathetic nervous activity; and (iii) an increase in secretory immunoglobulin A (s-IgA) and a decrease in salivary cortisol (s-cortisol) were induced by rakugo-derived linguistic pleasant emotion. Pleasant emotion is complicated state. However, by considering the evolutionary history of human being, it is possible to assess and evaluate pleasant emotion from certain physiological responses by appropriately summating various physiological parameters.

  3. Bitter taste stimuli induce differential neural codes in mouse brain.

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    David M Wilson

    Full Text Available A growing literature suggests taste stimuli commonly classified as "bitter" induce heterogeneous neural and perceptual responses. Here, the central processing of bitter stimuli was studied in mice with genetically controlled bitter taste profiles. Using these mice removed genetic heterogeneity as a factor influencing gustatory neural codes for bitter stimuli. Electrophysiological activity (spikes was recorded from single neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius during oral delivery of taste solutions (26 total, including concentration series of the bitter tastants quinine, denatonium benzoate, cycloheximide, and sucrose octaacetate (SOA, presented to the whole mouth for 5 s. Seventy-nine neurons were sampled; in many cases multiple cells (2 to 5 were recorded from a mouse. Results showed bitter stimuli induced variable gustatory activity. For example, although some neurons responded robustly to quinine and cycloheximide, others displayed concentration-dependent activity (p<0.05 to quinine but not cycloheximide. Differential activity to bitter stimuli was observed across multiple neurons recorded from one animal in several mice. Across all cells, quinine and denatonium induced correlated spatial responses that differed (p<0.05 from those to cycloheximide and SOA. Modeling spatiotemporal neural ensemble activity revealed responses to quinine/denatonium and cycloheximide/SOA diverged during only an early, at least 1 s wide period of the taste response. Our findings highlight how temporal features of sensory processing contribute differences among bitter taste codes and build on data suggesting heterogeneity among "bitter" stimuli, data that challenge a strict monoguesia model for the bitter quality.

  4. Mechanistic Studies of the Anti-Ulcerogenic Activity and Acute Toxicity Evaluation of Dichlorido-Copper(II-4-(2-5-Bromo-benzylideneaminoethyl Piperazin-1-ium Phenolate Complex against Ethanol-Induced Gastric Injury in Rats

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    A. Hamid A. Hadi

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The compound dichlorido-copper(II-4-(2-5-bromobenzylideneaminoethyl piperazin-1-ium phenolate (CuLBS was synthesized, characterized and screened for acute toxicity and protective activity against ethanol-induced gastric mucosal injury in rats. Gross microscopic lesions, biochemical and immunological parameters and histochemcial staining of glycogen storage were taken into consideration. Oral administration of CuLBS (30 and 60 mg/Kg for two weeks dose-dependently flattened gastric mucosa, significantly increased gastric mucus and total acidity, compared with control group (P < 0.01. Serum levels of liver enzymes aspartate (AST and alanine transaminases (ALT, pro-inflammatory (IL-6 and TNF-α and anti-inflammatory (IL-10 cytokines in the rats exposed to ethanol induced ulceration have been altered. Administration of CuLBS showed considerable (P < 0.05 protection against ulceration by modulating the acute alterations of cytokines AST, ALT and stomach glycogen. Interestingly, CuLBS did not interfere with the natural release of nitric oxide. CuLBS alone (60 mg/Kg did not exhibit any ulcerogenic effect as assessed using Adami’s scoring scale. An acute toxicity study showed that rats treated with CuLBS (1,000 and 2,000 mg/Kg manifested no abnormal signs. These findings therefore, suggested that the gastroprotective activity of CuLBS might contribute in modulating the inflammatory cytokine-mediated oxidative damage to gastric mucosa.

  5. Anti-Ulcerogenic Properties of Lycium chinense Mill Extracts against Ethanol-Induced Acute Gastric Lesion in Animal Models and Its Active Constituents

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    Opeyemi J. Olatunji

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to explore the gastroprotective properties of the aerial part of Lycium chinense Mill (LCA against ethanol-induced gastric mucosa lesions in mice models. Administration of LCA at doses of 50, 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight prior to ethanol consumption dose dependently inhibited gastric ulcers. The gastric mucosal injury was analyzed by gastric juice acidity, glutathione (GSH, superoxide dismutase (SOD, malondialdehyde (MDA, myeloperoxidase (MPO activities. Furthermore, the levels of the inflammatory mediators, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α, interleukin-6 (IL-6 and interleukin-1β (IL-1β in serum were also analyzed using ELISA. Pathological changes were also observed with the aid of hematoxylin-eosin (HE staining. Our results indicated that LCA significantly reduced the levels of MPO, MDA and increased SOD and GSH activities. Furthermore, LCA also significantly inhibited the levels of TNF-α, IL-6, and IL-1β in the serum of ulcerated mice in a dose dependent manner. Immunohistological analysis indicated that LCA also significantly attenuated the overexpression of nuclear factor-κB in pretreated mice models. This findings suggests Lycium chinense Mill possesses gastroprotective properties against ethanol-induced gastric injury and could be a possible therapeutic intervention in the treatment and management of gastric ulcers.

  6. Anti-ulcerogenic effect of methanolic extracts from Enicosanthellum pulchrum (King) Heusden against ethanol-induced acute gastric lesion in animal models.

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    Nordin, Noraziah; Salama, Suzy Munir; Golbabapour, Shahram; Hajrezaie, Maryam; Hassandarvish, Pouya; Kamalidehghan, Behnam; Majid, Nazia Abdul; Hashim, Najihah Mohd; Omar, Hanita; Fadaienasab, Mehran; Karimian, Hamed; Taha, Hairin; Ali, Hapipah Mohd; Abdulla, Mahmood Ameen

    2014-01-01

    A natural source of medicine, Enicosanthellum pulchrum is a tropical plant which belongs to the family Annonaceae. In this study, methanol extract from the leaves and stems of this species was evaluated for its gastroprotective potential against mucosal lesions induced by ethanol in rats. Seven groups of rats were assigned, groups 1 and 2 were given Tween 20 (10% v/v) orally. Group 3 was administered omeprazole 20 mg/kg (10% Tween 20) whilst the remaining groups received the leaf and stem extracts at doses of 150 and 300 mg/kg, respectively. After an additional hour, the rats in groups 2-7 received ethanol (95% v/v; 8 mL/kg) orally while group 1 received Tween 20 (10% v/v) instead. Rats were sacrificed after 1 h and their stomachs subjected to further studies. Macroscopically and histologically, group 2 rats showed extremely severe disruption of the gastric mucosa compared to rats pre-treated with the E. pulchrum extracts based on the ulcer index, where remarkable protection was noticed. Meanwhile, a significant percentage of inhibition was shown with the stem extract at 62% (150 mg/kg) and 65% (300 mg/kg), whilst the percentage with the leaf extract at doses of 150 and 300 mg/kg was 63% and 75%, respectively. An increase in mucus content, nitric oxide, glutathione, prostaglandin E2, superoxide dismutase, protein and catalase, and a decrease in malondialdehyde level compared to group 2 were also obtained. Furthermore, immunohistochemical staining of groups 4-7 exhibited down-regulation of Bax and up-regulation of Hsp70 proteins. The methanol extract from the leaves and the stems showed notable gastroprotective potential against ethanol.

  7. Pointing Hand Stimuli Induce Spatial Compatibility Effects and Effector Priming

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    Akio eNishimura

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigated the automatic influence of perceiving a picture that indicates other’s action on one’s own task performance in terms of spatial compatibility and effector priming. Participants pressed left and right buttons with their left and right hands respectively, depending on the color of a central dot target. Preceding the target, a left or right hand stimulus (pointing either to the left or right with the index or little finger was presented. In Experiment 1, with brief presentation of the pointing hand, a spatial compatibility effect was observed: Responses were faster when the direction of the pointed finger and the response position were spatially congruent than when incongruent. The spatial compatibility effect was larger for the pointing index finger stimulus compared to the pointing little finger stimulus. Experiment 2 employed longer duration of the pointing hand stimuli. In addition to the spatial compatibility effect for the pointing index finger, the effector priming effect was observed: Responses were faster when the anatomical left/right identity of the pointing and response hands matched than when the pointing and response hands differed in left/right identity. The results indicate that with sufficient processing time, both spatial/symbolic and anatomical features of a static body part implying another’s action simultaneously influence different aspects of the perceiver’s own action. Hierarchical coding, according to which an anatomical code is used only when a spatial code is unavailable, may not be applicable if stimuli as well as responses contain anatomical features.

  8. Network evolution induced by asynchronous stimuli through spike-timing-dependent plasticity.

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    Wu-Jie Yuan

    Full Text Available In sensory neural system, external asynchronous stimuli play an important role in perceptual learning, associative memory and map development. However, the organization of structure and dynamics of neural networks induced by external asynchronous stimuli are not well understood. Spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP is a typical synaptic plasticity that has been extensively found in the sensory systems and that has received much theoretical attention. This synaptic plasticity is highly sensitive to correlations between pre- and postsynaptic firings. Thus, STDP is expected to play an important role in response to external asynchronous stimuli, which can induce segregative pre- and postsynaptic firings. In this paper, we study the impact of external asynchronous stimuli on the organization of structure and dynamics of neural networks through STDP. We construct a two-dimensional spatial neural network model with local connectivity and sparseness, and use external currents to stimulate alternately on different spatial layers. The adopted external currents imposed alternately on spatial layers can be here regarded as external asynchronous stimuli. Through extensive numerical simulations, we focus on the effects of stimulus number and inter-stimulus timing on synaptic connecting weights and the property of propagation dynamics in the resulting network structure. Interestingly, the resulting feedforward structure induced by stimulus-dependent asynchronous firings and its propagation dynamics reflect both the underlying property of STDP. The results imply a possible important role of STDP in generating feedforward structure and collective propagation activity required for experience-dependent map plasticity in developing in vivo sensory pathways and cortices. The relevance of the results to cue-triggered recall of learned temporal sequences, an important cognitive function, is briefly discussed as well. Furthermore, this finding suggests a potential

  9. Exposure to Sexual Stimuli Induces Greater Discounting Leading to Increased Involvement in Cyber Delinquency Among Men.

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    Cheng, Wen; Chiou, Wen-Bin

    2018-02-01

    People frequently encounter sexual stimuli during Internet use. Research has shown that stimuli inducing sexual motivation can lead to greater impulsivity in men, as manifested in greater temporal discounting (i.e., a tendency to prefer smaller, immediate gains to larger, future ones). Extant findings in crime research suggest that delinquents tend to focus on short-term gains while failing to adequately think through the longer-term consequences of delinquent behavior. We experimentally tested the possibility that exposure to sexual stimuli is associated with the tendency to engage in cyber delinquency among men, as a result of their overly discounting remote consequences. In Experiment 1, participants exposed to pictures of "sexy" women were more likely to discount the future and were more inclined to make cyber-delinquent choices (e.g., cyberbullying, cyber fraud, cyber theft, and illegal downloading), compared with male participants who rated the sex appeal of less sexy opposite-sex pictures. However, these relationships were not observed in female participants exposed to either highly or less sexy pictures of men. In Experiment 2, male participants exposed to sexual primes showed a greater willingness to purchase a wide range of counterfeit rather than authentic products online and experienced a higher likelihood of logging into the other person's Facebook webpage (i.e., invading online privacy). The discounting tendency mediated the link between exposure to sexual primes and the inclination to engage in cyber-delinquent behavior. These findings provide insight into a strategy for reducing men's involvement in cyber delinquency; that is, through less exposure to sexual stimuli and promotion of delayed gratification. The current results suggest that the high availability of sexual stimuli in cyberspace may be more closely associated with men's cyber-delinquent behavior than previously thought.

  10. Ulcerogenicity of piroxicam: an analysis of spontaneously reported data.

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    Rossi, A C; Hsu, J P; Faich, G A

    1987-01-01

    Previous reports have suggested that piroxicam may be more ulcerogenic than other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in use. Critics have attributed this putative relation to flawed comparisons of spontaneously reported data. In this study cases of upper gastrointestinal bleeding, perforation, and ulcer reported to the Food and Drug Administration's spontaneous reporting system over 12 years were examined. Reporting rates for eight NSAIDs were compared over identical periods of their marketing life cycles. After adjustments were made for the heterogeneity in the underlying reporting rates the difference in rates between piroxicam and the other drugs was considerably reduced but piroxicam retained its top ranking among the drugs; however, large and clinically important differences in the frequency of cases of upper gastrointestinal bleeding, perforation, and ulcer between piroxicam and the rest of the NSAIDs compared probably do not exist. PMID:3109543

  11. Combined compared to dissociated oral and intestinal sucrose stimuli induce different brain hedonic processes

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    Clouard, Caroline; Meunier-Salaün, Marie-Christine; Meurice, Paul; Malbert, Charles-Henri; Val-Laillet, David

    2014-01-01

    The characterization of brain networks contributing to the processing of oral and/or intestinal sugar signals in a relevant animal model might help to understand the neural mechanisms related to the control of food intake in humans and suggest potential causes for impaired eating behaviors. This study aimed at comparing the brain responses triggered by oral and/or intestinal sucrose sensing in pigs. Seven animals underwent brain single photon emission computed tomography (99mTc-HMPAO) further to oral stimulation with neutral or sucrose artificial saliva paired with saline or sucrose infusion in the duodenum, the proximal part of the intestine. Oral and/or duodenal sucrose sensing induced differential cerebral blood flow changes in brain regions known to be involved in memory, reward processes and hedonic (i.e., pleasure) evaluation of sensory stimuli, including the dorsal striatum, prefrontal cortex, cingulate cortex, insular cortex, hippocampus, and parahippocampal cortex. Sucrose duodenal infusion only and combined sucrose stimulation induced similar activity patterns in the putamen, ventral anterior cingulate cortex and hippocampus. Some brain deactivations in the prefrontal and insular cortices were only detected in the presence of oral sucrose stimulation. Finally, activation of the right insular cortex was only induced by combined oral and duodenal sucrose stimulation, while specific activity patterns were detected in the hippocampus and parahippocampal cortex with oral sucrose dissociated from caloric load. This study sheds new light on the brain hedonic responses to sugar and has potential implications to unravel the neuropsychological mechanisms underlying food pleasure and motivation. PMID:25147536

  12. Chemical constituents and anti-ulcerogenic potential of the scales of Cynara scolymus (artichoke) heads.

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    Nassar, Mahmoud I; Mohamed, Tahia K; Elshamy, Abdelsamed I; El-Toumy, Sayed A; Abdel Lateef, Azza M; Farrag, Abdel-Razik H

    2013-08-15

    Cynara scolymus L. (Asteraseae) (artichoke) is commonly eaten as a vegetable; its leaves are frequently used in folk medicine in the treatment of hepatitis, hyperlipidaemia, obesity and dyspeptic disorders. The purpose of this study is to determine the chemical composition of the volatile oil and alcoholic extract of artichoke head scales. In addition, the role of the methanol extract as an anti-ulcer agent against ethanol-induced gastric ulcer in rats was evaluated. Six flavonoids and one phenolic acid were obtained from the methanol extract. Also, 37 compounds were identified in the volatile oil, the majority including mono- and sesquiterpenes. The artichoke extracts (200 and 400 mg kg(-1)) significantly (P artichoke induced an increase in gastric mucus production, and a reduction of the depth and severity of mucosal lesions. Artichoke dose-dependently reduced the elevated ethanol gastric malonylaldehyde, and reduced glutathione levels and catalase activity. These results suggest that the head scales of artichoke possess potential anti-ulcer activity. The present paper describes the identification of volatile oil for the first time along with the isolation and identification of the constituents of the methanol extract. Moreover, the high anti-ulcerogenic potential of scales of C. scolymus heads was established here for the first time. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.

  13. The Effect of the Type and Colour of Placebo Stimuli on Placebo Effects Induced by Observational Learning

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    Świder, Karolina; Bąbel, Przemysław

    2016-01-01

    Research shows that placebo analgesia and nocebo hyperalgesia can be induced through observational learning. Our aim was to replicate and extend these results by studying the influence of the type and colour of stimuli used as placebos on the placebo effects induced by observational learning. Three experimental and two control groups were tested. All participants received pain stimuli of the same intensity preceded by colour lights (green and red) or geometric shapes (circles and squares). Before receiving pain stimuli, participants in the experimental groups, but not in the control groups, observed a model who rated pain stimuli that were preceded by either green lights (green placebo group), red lights (red placebo group), or circles (circle placebo group) as being less painful than those preceded by either red lights (green placebo group), green lights (red placebo group), or squares (circle placebo group). As a result participants in the experimental groups rated pain stimuli preceded by either green lights (green placebo group), red lights (red placebo group), or circles (circle placebo group) as being less painful than the participants in the control groups did, indicating that placebo effect was induced. No statistically significant differences were found in the magnitudes of the placebo effects between the three experimental groups (green placebo, red placebo, and circle placebo groups), indicating that neither the type nor the colour of placebo stimuli affected the placebo effects induced by observational learning. The placebo effects induced by observational learning were found to be unrelated to the individual differences in pain anxiety, fear of pain, and empathy. PMID:27362552

  14. Prolonged maintenance of capsaicin-induced hyperalgesia by brief daily vibration stimuli.

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    Kim, Hee Kee; Schattschneider, Jörn; Lee, Inhyung; Chung, Kyungsoon; Baron, Ralf; Chung, Jin Mo

    2007-05-01

    This study tests the hypothesis that central sensitization initiated by nociceptive input can be maintained by repeated brief innocuous peripheral inputs. Capsaicin was injected intradermally into the hind paw of adult rats. Three different types of daily cutaneous mechanical stimulations (vibration, soft brush, or pressure) were applied to the capsaicin-injected paw for a period of 2 weeks. Daily stimulation consisted of a 10-s stimulation repeated every 30s for 30 min. Foot withdrawal thresholds to von Frey stimuli applied to the paw were measured once a day for 4 weeks. The capsaicin-only group (control rats without daily stimulation) showed hyperalgesia lasting for 3 days. In contrast, hyperalgesia persisted for 2 weeks in the group that received vibration stimulation. Neither the soft brush nor the pressure group showed a significant difference in mechanical threshold from the control group (capsaicin only). The vibration-induced prolonged hyperalgesia was significantly reduced by systemic injection of ifenprodil, an NMDA-receptor antagonist, but it was not influenced by either an AMPA-receptor blocker or a reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger. Furthermore, a dorsal column lesion did not interfere with the prolongation of hyperalgesia. Data suggest that vibration-induced prolongation of hyperalgesia is mediated by spinal NMDA-receptors, and a similar mechanism may underlie some forms of chronic pain with no obvious causes, such as complex regional pain syndrome type 1 (CRPS-1).

  15. Anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive and ulcerogenic activity of a zinc-diclofenac complex in rats

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    L.H. Santos

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive and ulcerogenic activity of a zinc-diclofenac complex (5.5 or 11 mg/kg in male Wistar rats (180-300 g, N = 6 and compared it to free diclofenac (5 or 10 mg/kg and to the combination of diclofenac (5 or 10 mg/kg and zinc acetate (1.68 or 3.5 mg/kg. The carrageenin-induced paw edema and the cotton pellet-induced granulomatous tissue formation models were used to assess the anti-inflammatory activity, and the Hargreaves model of thermal hyperalgesia was used to assess the antinociceptive activity. To investigate the effect of orally or intraperitoneally (ip administered drugs on cold-induced gastric lesions, single doses were administered before exposing the animals to a freezer (-18ºC for 45 min in individual cages. We also evaluated the gastric lesions induced by multiple doses of the drugs. Diclofenac plus zinc complex had the same anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive effects as diclofenac alone. Gastric lesions induced by a single dose administered per os and ip were reduced in the group treated with zinc-diclofenac when compared to the groups treated with free diclofenac or diclofenac plus zinc acetate. In the multiple dose treatment, the complex induced a lower number of the most severe lesions when compared to free diclofenac and diclofenac plus zinc acetate. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates that the zinc-diclofenac complex may represent an important therapeutic alternative for the treatment of rheumatic and inflammatory conditions, as its use may be associated with a reduced incidence of gastric lesions.

  16. Acute stress-induced cortisol elevations mediate reward system activity during subconscious processing of sexual stimuli.

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    Oei, Nicole Y L; Both, Stephanie; van Heemst, Diana; van der Grond, Jeroen

    2014-01-01

    Stress is thought to alter motivational processes by increasing dopamine (DA) secretion in the brain's "reward system", and its key region, the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). However, stress studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), mainly found evidence for stress-induced decreases in NAcc responsiveness toward reward cues. Results from both animal and human PET studies indicate that the stress hormone cortisol may be crucial in the interaction between stress and dopaminergic actions. In the present study we therefore investigated whether cortisol mediated the effect of stress on DA-related responses to -subliminal-presentation of reward cues using the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST), which is known to reliably enhance cortisol levels. Young healthy males (n = 37) were randomly assigned to the TSST or control condition. After stress induction, brain activation was assessed using fMRI during a backward-masking paradigm in which potentially rewarding (sexual), emotionally negative and neutral stimuli were presented subliminally, masked by pictures of inanimate objects. A region of interest analysis showed that stress decreased activation in the NAcc in response to masked sexual cues (voxel-corrected, pcortisol levels were related to stronger NAcc activation, showing that cortisol acted as a suppressor variable in the negative relation between stress and NAcc activation. The present findings indicate that cortisol is crucially involved in the relation between stress and the responsiveness of the reward system. Although generally stress decreases activation in the NAcc in response to rewarding stimuli, high stress-induced cortisol levels suppress this relation, and are associated with stronger NAcc activation. Individuals with a high cortisol response to stress might on one hand be protected against reductions in reward sensitivity, which has been linked to anhedonia and depression, but they may ultimately be more vulnerable to increased reward

  17. Combined compared to dissociated oral and intestinal sucrose stimuli induce different brain hedonic processes

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    Caroline eClouard

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The characterization of brain networks contributing to the processing of oral and/or intestinal sugar signals in a relevant animal model might help to understand the neural mechanisms related to the control of food intake in humans and suggest potential causes for impaired eating behaviors. This study aimed at comparing the brain responses triggered by oral and/or intestinal sucrose sensing in pigs. Seven animals underwent brain single photon emission computed tomography (99mTc-HMPAO further to oral stimulation with neutral or sucrose artificial saliva paired with saline or sucrose infusion in the duodenum, the proximal part of the intestine. Oral and/or duodenal sucrose sensing induced differential cerebral blood flow (CBF changes in brain regions known to be involved in memory, reward processes and hedonic (i.e. pleasure evaluation of sensory stimuli, including the dorsal striatum, prefrontal cortex, cingulate cortex, insular cortex, hippocampus and parahippocampal cortex. Sucrose duodenal infusion only and combined sucrose stimulation induced similar activity patterns in the putamen, ventral anterior cingulate cortex and hippocampus. Some brain deactivations in the prefrontal and insular cortices were only detected in the presence of oral sucrose stimulation. Finally, activation of the right insular cortex was only induced by combined oral and duodenal sucrose stimulation, while specific activity patterns were detected in the hippocampus and parahippocampal cortex with oral sucrose dissociated from caloric load. This study sheds new light on the brain hedonic responses to sugar and has potential implications to unravel the neuropsychological mechanisms underlying food pleasure and motivation.

  18. Different types of theta rhythmicity are induced by social and fearful stimuli in a network associated with social memory.

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    Tendler, Alex; Wagner, Shlomo

    2015-02-16

    Rhythmic activity in the theta range is thought to promote neuronal communication between brain regions. In this study, we performed chronic telemetric recordings in socially behaving rats to monitor electrophysiological activity in limbic brain regions linked to social behavior. Social encounters were associated with increased rhythmicity in the high theta range (7-10 Hz) that was proportional to the stimulus degree of novelty. This modulation of theta rhythmicity, which was specific for social stimuli, appeared to reflect a brain-state of social arousal. In contrast, the same network responded to a fearful stimulus by enhancement of rhythmicity in the low theta range (3-7 Hz). Moreover, theta rhythmicity showed different pattern of coherence between the distinct brain regions in response to social and fearful stimuli. We suggest that the two types of stimuli induce distinct arousal states that elicit different patterns of theta rhythmicity, which cause the same brain areas to communicate in different modes.

  19. Ulcerogenic Helicobacter pylori strains isolated from children: a contribution to get insight into the virulence of the bacteria.

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    Inês Vitoriano

    Full Text Available Infection with Helicobacter pylori is the major cause for the development of peptic ulcer disease (PUD. In children, with no other etiology for the disease, this rare event occurs shortly after infection. In these young patients, habits of smoking, diet, consumption of alcohol and non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs and stress, in addition to the genetic susceptibility of the patient, represent a minor influence. Accordingly, the virulence of the implicated H. pylori strain should play a crucial role in the development of PUD. Corroborating this, our in vitro infection assays comparing a pool of five H. pylori strains isolated from children with PUD to a pool of five other pediatric clinical isolates associated with non-ulcer dyspepsia (NUD showed the greater ability of PUD strains to induce a marked decrease in the viability of gastric cells and to cause severe damage in the cells cytoskeleton as well as an impairment in the production/secretion of mucins. To uncover virulence features, we compared the proteome of these two groups of H. pylori strains. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis followed by mass-spectrometry allowed us to detect 27 differentially expressed proteins between them. In addition to the presence of genes encoding well established virulence factors, namely cagA, vacAs1, oipA "on" status, homB and jhp562 genes, the pediatric ulcerogenic strains shared a proteome profile characterized by changes in the abundance of: motility-associated proteins, accounting for higher motility; antioxidant proteins, which may confer increased resistance to inflammation; and enzymes involved in key steps in the metabolism of glucose, amino acids and urea, which may be advantageous to face fluctuations of nutrients. In conclusion, the enhanced virulence of the pediatric ulcerogenic H. pylori strains may result from a synergy between their natural ability to better adapt to the hostile human stomach and the expression of the established virulence

  20. Neural circuits of disgust induced by sexual stimuli in homosexual and heterosexual men: An fMRI study

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    Zhang Minming; Hu Shaohua; Xu Lijuan; Wang Qidong; Xu Xiaojun; Wei Erqing; Yan Leqin; Hu Jianbo; Wei Ning; Zhou Weihua; Huang Manli; Xu Yi

    2011-01-01

    Few studies demonstrated neural circuits related to disgust were influenced by internal sexual orientation in male. Here we used fMRI to study the neural responses to disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men to investigate that issue. Thirty-two healthy male volunteers (sixteen homosexual and sixteen heterosexual) were scanned while viewing alternating blocks of three types of erotic film: heterosexual couples (F-M), male homosexual couples (M-M), and female homosexual couples (F-F) engaged in sexual activity. All the participants rated their level of disgust and sexual arousal as well. The F-F and M-M stimuli induced disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men, respectively. The common activations related to disgusting stimuli included: bilateral frontal gyrus and occipital gyrus, right middle temporal gyrus, left superior temporal gyrus, right cerebellum, and right thalamus. Homosexual men had greater neural responses in the left medial frontal gyrus than did heterosexual men to the sexual disgusting stimuli; in contrast, heterosexual men showed significantly greater activation than homosexual men in the left cuneus. ROI analysis showed that negative correlation were found between the magnitude of MRI signals in the left medial frontal gyrus and scores of disgust in homosexual subjects (p < 0.05). This study indicated that there were regions in common as well as regions specific for each type of erotic stimuli during disgust of homosexual and heterosexual men.

  1. Neural circuits of disgust induced by sexual stimuli in homosexual and heterosexual men: An fMRI study

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    Zhang Minming [Department of Radiology, Second Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou (China); Hu Shaohua [Department of Mental Health, First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 79 Qing Chun Road, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province 310003 (China); Xu Lijuan [National Laboratory of Pattern Recognition, Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing (China); Wang Qidong [Department of Radiology, First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou (China); Xu Xiaojun [Department of Radiology, Second Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou (China); Wei Erqing [College of Pharmacology, Zhejiang University (China); Yan Leqin [MD Anderson Cancer Center, Virginia Harris Cockrell Cancer Research Center, University of Texas, Austin (United States); Hu Jianbo; Wei Ning; Zhou Weihua; Huang Manli [Department of Mental Health, First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 79 Qing Chun Road, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province 310003 (China); Xu Yi, E-mail: xuyi61@yahoo.com.cn [Department of Mental Health, First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 79 Qing Chun Road, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province 310003 (China)

    2011-11-15

    Few studies demonstrated neural circuits related to disgust were influenced by internal sexual orientation in male. Here we used fMRI to study the neural responses to disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men to investigate that issue. Thirty-two healthy male volunteers (sixteen homosexual and sixteen heterosexual) were scanned while viewing alternating blocks of three types of erotic film: heterosexual couples (F-M), male homosexual couples (M-M), and female homosexual couples (F-F) engaged in sexual activity. All the participants rated their level of disgust and sexual arousal as well. The F-F and M-M stimuli induced disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men, respectively. The common activations related to disgusting stimuli included: bilateral frontal gyrus and occipital gyrus, right middle temporal gyrus, left superior temporal gyrus, right cerebellum, and right thalamus. Homosexual men had greater neural responses in the left medial frontal gyrus than did heterosexual men to the sexual disgusting stimuli; in contrast, heterosexual men showed significantly greater activation than homosexual men in the left cuneus. ROI analysis showed that negative correlation were found between the magnitude of MRI signals in the left medial frontal gyrus and scores of disgust in homosexual subjects (p < 0.05). This study indicated that there were regions in common as well as regions specific for each type of erotic stimuli during disgust of homosexual and heterosexual men.

  2. Evaluation of anti-ulcerogenic activity in an Aqueous Extract obtained from Bauhinia forficata leaves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanna Christina Costa Mazzeo

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Bauhinia forficata Link, popularly known as pata-de-vaca, unha-de-vaca, casco-de-vaca, has been widely used in traditional medicine to treat several diseases. Leaves of B. forficata are used in popular medicine as a diuretic, hypoglycemic, tonic and cleanser, and to combat elephantiasis. However, despite the wide range of ethnopharmacological data surrounding the plant, there are no scientific data demonstrating a probable anti-ulcerogenic activity conferred by use of that species. The present study aimed to evaluate the antiulcer properties of an infusion of fresh leaves of B. forficata Link. From the leaves of B. forficata, an Aqueous extract (AqE was obtained and the phytochemical analysis showed the presence of flavonols in this extract. In the gastric ulcer induced by administration of HCl-Ethanol model performed with four different doses of AqE (125, 250, 500 and 1000 mg.Kg-1, the AqE showed significant preventive activity (*p<0.01 at doses of 1000 mg.Kg-1. The antiulcer activity of AqE (1000 mg.Kg-1 could also be demonstrated in experimental models of NSAID-bethanechol (**p<0.001 and absolute ethanol (**p<0.001. Moreover, AqE (1000 mg.Kg-1 promoted a significant increase (**p<0.001 in the amount of gastric mucus. The data presented here demonstrated the potential gastroprotective activity from AqE, possibly attributed to the presence of flavonols in this extract. These results may serve as a support for the development of new treatments related to the pathology of gastric ulcer.Keywords: Gastric ulcer. Cytoprotection. Flavonoids. Bauhinia forficata.  

  3. Ketogal: A Derivative Ketorolac Molecule with Minor Ulcerogenic and Renal Toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Russo

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Ketorolac is a powerful non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID, with a great analgesic activity, present on the Italian market since 1991. Despite the excellent therapeutic activity, the chronic use of ketorolac has long been limited owing to the high incidence of gastrointestinal and kidney side events. In our previous study, we demonstrated that ketorolac–galactose conjugate (ketogal, synthesized and tested in a single-dose study, was able to reduce ulcerogenicity, while preserving the high pharmacological efficacy of its parent drug. In this paper, in order to verify the suitability of this compound, for repeated administration, ex vivo experiments on naïve mice were performed. Mice were treated for 5 or 7 days with the highest doses of two drugs (ketorolac 10 mg/kg and ketogal 16.3 mg/kg, and the expression of both gastric COX-1 and PGsyn was evaluated. Results showed that oral ketorolac treatment significantly reduced both enzymes; surprisingly, oral treatment with ketogal did not produce significant variation in the expression of the two constitutive enzymes. Moreover, histological experiments on stomach and kidneys clearly indicated that repeated administration of ketogal induced lower toxicity than ketorolac. At same time, in vivo results clearly showed that both ketorolac and ketogal had a similar therapeutic activity in a model of inflammation and in pain perception. These effects were accompanied by the reduction of enzyme expression such as COX-2 and iNOS, and by the modulation of levels of nuclear NF-κB and cytosolic IκB-α in the inflamed paws. These very encouraging results demonstrate for the first time that ketogal could represent a valid and novel therapeutic alternative to the ketorolac and might pave the way for clinical studies.

  4. Effect of simultaneously induced environmental stimuli on electrical signalling and gas exchange in maize plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuralhan-Eckert, Jasmin; Lautner, Silke; Fromm, Jörg

    2018-04-01

    Electrical signalling in response to environmental stimuli is a well-known phenomenon in higher plants. For example, in maize, different stimuli, such as wounding or re-irrigation after drought, incite characteristic electrical signals which have quite particular effects on gas exchange. What is less well understood is how plants (specifically maize) respond when two different environmental stimuli are applied simultaneously. To explore this, a three-stage experiment was designed. In the first stage, drought conditions were simulated by decreasing the soil water content to 30-40 % of field capacity. In these conditions, and in contrast to well-watered plants, the maize exhibited only 60-70% of the original level of stomatal conductance and 50-60 % of the original photosynthesis rate. In the second stage of the experiment the plants were re-irrigated and heat stimulated separately. Re-irrigation led to specific electrical signals followed by a gradual increase of gas exchange. In contrast, after heat stimulation of a leaf an electrical signal was evoked that reduced the net CO 2 -uptake rate as well as stomatal conductance. In the third stage, to elucidate how plants process simultaneous re-irrigation and heat stimulation, the drought-stressed maize plants were re-watered and heat-stimulated at the same time. Results showed a two phase response. In the first phase there was a rapid decrease in both the CO 2 uptake rate and the stomatal conductance, while in the second phase each of these parameters increased gradually. Thus, the results strongly support the view that the responses from both stimuli were combined, indicating that maize plants can process simultaneously applied stimuli. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  5. Comparison of erythropoietic response to erythropoietin-secreting stimuli in mice following polycythemia induced by transfusion or hypoxia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alippi, R.M.; Barcelo, A.C.; Bozzini, C.E.

    1985-03-01

    The erythropoietic response, measured as RBC-/sup 59/Fe uptake, in response to either 24-h exposure to hypoxia or administration of dexamethasone, isoproterenol, testosterone, or erythropoietin, was determined in both posthypoxic (PH) and hypertransfused (HT) polycythemic mice. Highly significant differences between PH and HT mice exposed to hypoxia or injected with dexamethasone, isoproterenol, or testosterone were observed, isotope incorporation being always higher in PH than in HT mice. On the other hand, the response to erythropoietin did not show a significant difference between PH and HT mice. These results suggest that PH mice have been preconditioned by exposure to hypoxia in a way that makes them more sensitive to at least some kinds of erythropoietic stimuli. Since these stimuli have been shown by others to increase erythropoietin production, the results support the hypothesis that hypoxia induces sensitization of the erythropoietin- producing organ(s).

  6. Correlation between MEG and BOLD fMRI signals induced by visual flicker stimuli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chu Renxin; Holroyd Tom; Duyn Jeff

    2007-01-01

    The goal of this work was to investigate how the MEG signal amplitude correlates with that of BOLD fMRI.To investigate the correlation between fMRI and macroscopic electrical activity, BOLD fMRI and MEG was performed on the same subjects (n =5). A visual flicker stimulus of varying temporal frequency was used to elicit neural responses in early visual areas. A strong similarity was observed in frequency tuning curves between both modalities.Although, averaged over subjects, the BOLD tuning curve was somewhat broader than MEG, both BOLD and MEG had maxima at a flicker frequency of 10 Hz. Also, we measured the first and second harmonic components as the stimuli frequency by MEG. In the low stimuli frequency (less than 6 Hz), the second harmonic has comparable amplitude with the first harmonic, which implies that neural frequency response is nonlinear and has more nonlinear components in low frequency than in high frequency.

  7. Cognitive appraisal of environmental stimuli induces emotion-like states in fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerqueira, M; Millot, S; Castanheira, M F; Félix, A S; Silva, T; Oliveira, G A; Oliveira, C C; Martins, C I M; Oliveira, R F

    2017-10-13

    The occurrence of emotions in non-human animals has been the focus of debate over the years. Recently, an interest in expanding this debate to non-tetrapod vertebrates and to invertebrates has emerged. Within vertebrates, the study of emotion in teleosts is particularly interesting since they represent a divergent evolutionary radiation from that of tetrapods, and thus they provide an insight into the evolution of the biological mechanisms of emotion. We report that Sea Bream exposed to stimuli that vary according to valence (positive, negative) and salience (predictable, unpredictable) exhibit different behavioural, physiological and neuromolecular states. Since according to the dimensional theory of emotion valence and salience define a two-dimensional affective space, our data can be interpreted as evidence for the occurrence of distinctive affective states in fish corresponding to each the four quadrants of the core affective space. Moreover, the fact that the same stimuli presented in a predictable vs. unpredictable way elicited different behavioural, physiological and neuromolecular states, suggests that stimulus appraisal by the individual, rather than an intrinsic characteristic of the stimulus, has triggered the observed responses. Therefore, our data supports the occurrence of emotion-like states in fish that are regulated by the individual's perception of environmental stimuli.

  8. Neural circuits of disgust induced by sexual stimuli in homosexual and heterosexual men: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Minming; Hu, Shaohua; Xu, Lijuan; Wang, Qidong; Xu, Xiaojun; Wei, Erqing; Yan, Leqin; Hu, Jianbo; Wei, Ning; Zhou, Weihua; Huang, Manli; Xu, Yi

    2011-11-01

    Few studies demonstrated neural circuits related to disgust were influenced by internal sexual orientation in male. Here we used fMRI to study the neural responses to disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men to investigate that issue. Thirty-two healthy male volunteers (sixteen homosexual and sixteen heterosexual) were scanned while viewing alternating blocks of three types of erotic film: heterosexual couples (F-M), male homosexual couples (M-M), and female homosexual couples (F-F) engaged in sexual activity. All the participants rated their level of disgust and sexual arousal as well. The F-F and M-M stimuli induced disgust in homosexual and heterosexual men, respectively. The common activations related to disgusting stimuli included: bilateral frontal gyrus and occipital gyrus, right middle temporal gyrus, left superior temporal gyrus, right cerebellum, and right thalamus. Homosexual men had greater neural responses in the left medial frontal gyrus than did heterosexual men to the sexual disgusting stimuli; in contrast, heterosexual men showed significantly greater activation than homosexual men in the left cuneus. ROI analysis showed that negative correlation were found between the magnitude of MRI signals in the left medial frontal gyrus and scores of disgust in homosexual subjects (pmen. Crown Copyright © 2010. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Effect of heat-induced pain stimuli on pulse transit time and pulse wave amplitude in healthy volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Velzen, Marit H N; Loeve, Arjo J; Kortekaas, Minke C; Niehof, Sjoerd P; Mik, Egbert G; Stolker, Robert J

    2016-01-01

    Pain is commonly assessed subjectively by interpretations of patient behaviour and/or reports from patients. When this is impossible the availability of a quantitative objective pain assessment tool based on objective physiological parameters would greatly benefit clinical practice and research beside the standard self-report tests. Vasoconstriction is one of the physiological responses to pain. The aim of this study was to investigate whether pulse transit time (PTT) and pulse wave amplitude (PWA) decrease in response to this vasoconstriction when caused by heat-induced pain. The PTT and PWA were measured in healthy volunteers, on both index fingers using photoplethysmography and electrocardiography. Each subject received 3 heat-induced pain stimuli using a Temperature-Sensory Analyzer thermode block to apply a controlled, increasing temperature from 32.0 °C to 50.0 °C to the skin. After reaching 50.0 °C, the thermode was immediately cooled down to 32.0 °C. The study population was divided into 2 groups with a time-interval between the stimuli 20s or 60s. The results showed a significant (p  Heat-induced pain causes a decrease of PTT and PWA. Consequently, it is expected that, in the future, PTT and PWA may be applied as objective indicators of pain, either beside the standard self-report test, or when self-report testing is impossible.

  10. Primary characterization and evaluation of anti ulcerogenic activity of an aqueous extract from callus culture of Cereus peruvianus Mill. (Cactaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayme, Milena O; Ames, Franciele Q; Bersani-Amado, Ciomar A; Machado, Maria de Fatima P S; Mangolin, Claudete A; Goncalves, Regina A C; de Oliveira, Arildo J B

    2015-01-01

    In the current study we reported cultivation, extraction procedure, analysis and preliminary characterization of the aqueous extract from Cereus peruvianus callus culture and evaluated its anti ulcerogenic activity in vivo models of experimental ulcers in Wistar rats. The obtained aqueous extract from callus (AC) was dialyzed and subjected to freeze-thaw process, providing a possible polysaccharide. The carbohydrate and protein contents of the aqueous extract were estimated at 53.4% and 0.66%, respectively, composed primarily of galactose, arabinose and galacturonic acid, with minor amounts of glucose. This appeared heterogeneous when analyzed by high-performance size-exclusion chromatography and a multiangle laser light scattering detector (HPSEC-MALLS). The AC was found to be significantly effective against ethanol-induced lesions but was ineffective against indomethacin-induced lesions. The callus culture of C. peruvianus is an alternative source for the synthesis of substances originally produced by plants. The calluses grown indefinitely in vitro under controlled conditions are stable tissues, and the aqueous extract from calluses may be used instead of fully developed plants using the protocols described in this study.

  11. A case of epilepsy induced by eating or by visual stimuli of food made of minced meat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mimura, Naoya; Inoue, Takeshi; Shimotake, Akihiro; Matsumoto, Riki; Ikeda, Akio; Takahashi, Ryosuke

    2017-08-31

    We report a 34-year-old woman with eating epilepsy induced not only by eating but also seeing foods made of minced meat. In her early 20s of age, she started having simple partial seizures (SPS) as flashback and epigastric discomfort induced by particular foods. When she was 33 years old, she developed SPS, followed by secondarily generalized tonic-clonic seizure (sGTCS) provoked by eating a hot dog, and 6 months later, only seeing the video of dumpling. We performed video electroencephalogram (EEG) monitoring while she was seeing the video of soup dumpling, which most likely caused sGTCS. Ictal EEG showed rhythmic theta activity in the left frontal to mid-temporal area, followed by generalized seizure pattern. In this patient, seizures were provoked not only by eating particular foods but also by seeing these. This suggests a form of epilepsy involving visual stimuli.

  12. Anti-inflammatory, gastroprotective and anti-ulcerogenic effects of red algae Gracilaria changii (Gracilariales, Rhodophyta) extract

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Gracilaria changii (Xia et Abbott) Abbott, Zhang et Xia, a red algae commonly found in the coastal areas of Malaysia is traditionally used for foods and for the treatment of various ailments including inflammation and gastric ailments. The aim of the study was to investigate anti-inflammatory, gastroprotective and anti-ulcerogenic activities of a mass spectrometry standardized methanolic extract of Gracilaria changii. Methods Methanolic extract of Gracilaria changii (MeOHGCM6 extract) was prepared and standardized using mass spectrometry (MS). Anti-inflammatory activities of MeOHGCM6 extract were examined by treating U937 cells during its differentiation with 10 μg/ml MeOHGCM6 extract. Tumour necrosis factors-α (TNF-α) response level and TNF-α and interleukin-6 (IL-6) gene expression were monitored and compared to that treated by 10 nM betamethasone, an anti-inflammatory drug. Gastroprotective and anti-ulcerogenic activities of MeOHGCM6 extract were examined by feeding rats with MeOHGCM6 extract ranging from 2.5 to 500 mg/kg body weight (b.w.) following induction of gastric lesions. Production of mucus and gastric juice, pH of the gastric juice and non-protein sulfhydryls (NP-SH) levels were determined and compared to that fed by 20 mg/kg b.w. omeprazole (OMP), a known anti-ulcer drug. Results MS/MS analysis of the MeOHGCM6 extracts revealed the presence of methyl 10-hydroxyphaeophorbide a and 10-hydroxypheophytin a, known chlorophyll proteins and several unidentified molecules. Treatment with 10 μg/ml MeOHGCM6 extract during differentiation of U937 cells significantly inhibited TNF-α response level and TNF-α and IL-6 gene expression. The inhibitory effect was comparable to that of betamethasone. No cytotoxic effects were recorded for cells treated with the 10 μg/ml MeOHGCM6 extract. Rats fed with MeOHGCM6 extract at 500 mg/kg b.w. showed reduced absolute ethanol-induced gastric lesion sizes by > 99% (p < 0.05). This protective

  13. Orexin receptor antagonist-induced sleep does not impair the ability to wake in response to emotionally salient acoustic stimuli in dogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela L. Tannenbaum

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The ability to awaken from sleep in response to important stimuli is a critical feature of normal sleep, as is maintaining sleep continuity in the presence of irrelevant background noise. Dual orexin receptor antagonists (DORAs effectively promote sleep across species by targeting the evolutionarily conserved wake-promoting orexin signaling pathway. This study in dogs investigated whether DORA-induced sleep preserved the ability to awaken appropriately to salient acoustic stimuli but remain asleep when exposed to irrelevant stimuli. Sleep and wake in response to DORAs, vehicle, GABA-A receptor modulators (diazepam, eszopiclone and zolpidem and antihistamine (diphenhydramine administration were evaluated in telemetry-implanted adult dogs with continuous electrocorticogram, electromyogram, electrooculogram, and activity recordings. DORAs induced sleep, but GABA-A modulators and antihistamine induced paradoxical hyperarousal. Thus, salience gating studies were conducted during DORA-22 (0.3, 1, and 5 mg/kg; day and night and vehicle nighttime sleep. The acoustic stimuli were either classically conditioned using food reward and positive attention (salient stimulus or presented randomly (neutral stimulus. Once conditioned, the tones were presented at sleep times corresponding to maximal DORA-22 exposure. In response to the salient stimuli, dogs woke completely from vehicle and orexin-antagonized sleep across all sleep stages but rarely awoke to neutral stimuli. Notably, acute pharmacological antagonism of orexin receptors paired with emotionally salient anticipation produced wake, not cataplexy, in a species where genetic (chronic loss of orexin receptor signaling leads to narcolepsy/cataplexy. DORA-induced sleep in this species thereby retains the desired capacity to awaken to emotionally salient acoustic stimuli while preserving uninterrupted sleep in response to irrelevant stimuli.

  14. PREFACE: Stimuli Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queisser, Hans J.

    2011-01-01

    in search of a problem', as sceptics joked about this new light source, was of vital interest to us because of the high frequencies to carry plenty of information channels. Transmission of laser light straight through the air, from Building 1 to Building 2 at Murray Hill, however, showed that the atmosphere was by far too unstable. We discussed silver-plated tubes and glass fibers, which eventually became so unbelievably pure that nowadays they provide a wealth of inexpensive communication channels. A gas laser did not appear to emerge into a viable, convenient engineering solution, nor did the ruby. A diode laser source had to be developed. I used laser-induced photoluminescence to search for more efficient GaAs materials, which resulted in detecting crystals with amphoteric silicon doping of very high output in the near-infrared [13]. This invention was patented in 37 countries and provided millions of diodes, such as for TV remote control devices. I had to sign off my inventor's reward for one US dollar, which I actually did not even receive. (In earlier years, patentors obtained one silver dollar; but not anymore!) Yet my little diodes, however efficient, could not be stimulated to emit coherent light, alas! Together with my colleagues and friends Morton Panish and Craig Casey, later famous textbook authors on diode lasers [14], we searched for solutions, although colleagues at the famed RCA Laboratories in Princeton had predicted that a laser diode was impossible [15]. I remember one morning when Mort told us of a talk he had just heard at a meeting in New York City, where our friendly competitors at the IBM Labs in Yorktown Heights, NY had suggested that heterojunctions could nicely confine and concentrate carriers, maybe also photons. Such heterojunctions were then tried in Panish's lab to be grown via liquid-phase epitaxy, Stan Sumski being the expert technician. At that time, the Leningraders, under leadership of Zhores Alferov were working hard and highly

  15. Acute stress-induced cortisol elevations mediate reward system activity during subconscious processing of sexual stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oei, N.Y.L.; Both, S.; van Heemst, D.; van der Grond, J.

    2014-01-01

    Stress is thought to alter motivational processes by increasing dopamine (DA) secretion in the brain's "reward system", and its key region, the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). However, stress studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), mainly found evidence for stress-induced decreases in

  16. Decidualization and syndecan-1 knock down sensitize endometrial stromal cells to apoptosis induced by embryonic stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Jean Boeddeker

    Full Text Available Human embryo invasion and implantation into the inner wall of the maternal uterus, the endometrium, is the pivotal process for a successful pregnancy. Whereas disruption of the endometrial epithelial layer was already correlated with the programmed cell death, the role of apoptosis of the subjacent endometrial stromal cells during implantation is indistinct. The aim was to clarify whether apoptosis plays a role in the stromal invasion and to characterize if the apoptotic susceptibility of endometrial stromal cells to embryonic stimuli is influenced by decidualization and Syndecan-1. Therefore, the immortalized human endometrial stromal cell line St-T1 was used to first generate a new cell line with a stable Syndecan-1 knock down (KdS1, and second to further decidualize the cells with progesterone. As a replacement for the ethically inapplicable embryo all cells were treated with the embryonic factors and secretion products interleukin-1β, interferon-γ, tumor necrosis factor-α, transforming growth factor-β1 and anti-Fas antibody to mimic the embryo contact. Detection of apoptosis was verified via Caspase ELISAs, PARP cleavage and Annexin V staining. Apoptosis-related proteins were investigated via antibody arrays and underlying signaling pathways were analyzed by Western blot. Non-decidualized endometrial stromal cells showed a resistance towards apoptosis which was rescinded by decidualization and Syndecan-1 knock down independent of decidualization. This was correlated with an altered expression of several pro- and anti-apoptotic proteins and connected to a higher activation of pro-survival Akt in non-differentiated St-T1 as an upstream mediator of apoptotis-related proteins. This study provides insight into the largely elusive process of implantation, proposing an important role for stromal cell apoptosis to successfully establish a pregnancy. The impact of Syndecan-1 in attenuating the apoptotic signal is particularly interesting in the

  17. Acute stress-induced cortisol elevations mediate reward system activity during subconscious processing of sexual stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Oei, Nicole Y. L.; Both, Stephanie; van Heemst, Diana; van der Grond, Jeroen

    2014-01-01

    Summary Stress is thought to alter motivational processes by increasing dopamine (DA) secretion in the brain’s ‘‘reward system’’, and its key region, the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). However, stress studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), mainly found evidence for stress-induced decreases in NAcc responsiveness toward reward cues. Results from both animal and human PETstudies indicate that the stress hormone cortisol may be crucial in the interaction between st...

  18. Activated platelets release sphingosine 1-phosphate and induce hypersensitivity to noxious heat stimuli in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela eWeth

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available At the site of injury activated platelets release various mediators, one of which is sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P. It was the aim of this study to explore whether activated human platelets had a pronociceptive effect in an in vivo mouse model and whether this effect was based on the release of S1P and subsequent activation of neuronal S1P receptors 1 or 3. Human platelets were prepared in different concentrations (105/µl, 106/µl, 107/µl and assessed in mice with different genetic backgrounds (WT, S1P1fl/fl, SNS-S1P1-/-, S1P3-/-. Intracutaneous injections of activated human platelets induced a significant, dose-dependent hypersensitivity to noxious thermal stimulation. The degree of heat hypersensitivity correlated with the platelet concentration as well as the platelet S1P content and the amount of S1P released upon platelet activation as measured with LC MS/MS. Despite the significant correlations between S1P and platelet count, no difference in paw withdrawal latency (PWL was observed in mice with a global null mutation of the S1P3 receptor or a conditional deletion of the S1P1 receptor in nociceptive primary afferents. Furthermore, neutralisation of S1P with a selective anti-S1P antibody did not abolish platelet induced heat hypersensitivity. Our results suggest that activated platelets release S1P and induce heat hypersensitivity in vivo. However, the platelet induced heat hypersensitivity was caused by mediators other than S1P.

  19. Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Ulcerogenic Activities of Chantaleela ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The analgesic activity of Chantaleela recipe may act via mechanism at peripheral and partly central nervous system. In antipyretic test, Chantaleela recipe significantly decreased rectal temperature of brewer's yeast-induced hyperthermia rats, probably by inhibiting synthesis and/or release of prostaglandin E2 in the ...

  20. Evaluation of induced and evoked changes in EEG during selective attention to verbal stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horki, P; Bauernfeind, G; Schippinger, W; Pichler, G; Müller-Putz, G R

    2016-09-01

    Two challenges need to be addressed before bringing non-motor mental tasks for brain-computer interface (BCI) control to persons in a minimally conscious state (MCS), who can be behaviorally unresponsive even when proven to be consciously aware: first, keeping the cognitive demands as low as possible so that they could be fulfilled by persons with MCS. Second, increasing the control of experimental protocol (i.e. type and timing of the task performance). The goal of this study is twofold: first goal is to develop an experimental paradigm that can facilitate the performance of brain-teasers (e.g. mental subtraction and word generation) on the one hand, and can increase the control of experimental protocol on the other hand. The second goal of this study is to exploit the similar findings for mentally attending to someone else's verbal performance of brain-teaser tasks and self-performing the same tasks to setup an online BCI, and to compare it in healthy participants to the current "state-of-the-art" motor imagery (MI, sports). The response accuracies for the best performing healthy participants indicate that selective attention to verbal performance of mental subtraction (SUB) is a viable alternative to the MI. Time-frequency analysis of the SUB task in one participant with MCS did not reveal any significant (pselective attention task (i.e. mentally attending to someone else's verbal performance of mental subtraction) can modulate both induced and evoked changes in EEG, and be used for yes/no communication in an auditory scanning paradigm. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Worry-inducing stimuli in an aversive Go/NoGo task enhance reactive control in individuals with lower trait-anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leue, Anja; Rodilla, Carmen Cano; Beauducel, André

    2017-04-01

    This study relates predictions on reactive and proactive cognitive control to findings on anxious apprehension/worry and ERN/Ne. We investigated whether worry-inducing stimuli in an aversive performance setting lead to a more pronounced increase of the ERN/Ne in individuals with lower anxious apprehension/worry. We also explored the N2 amplitude in the context of worry-inducing stimuli. Fifty-eight participants performed an extended Go/NoGo task. A neutral or fearful face was presented at the beginning of each trial, with the fearful face as a worry-inducing, distracting stimulus. In an aversive feedback condition, aversive feedback was provided for false or too slow responses. We found a more pronounced decrease of the ERN/Ne after worry-inducing stimuli compared to neutral stimuli in participants with lower anxious apprehension/worry. Moreover, less pronounced N2 amplitudes were associated with shorter reaction times in the aversive feedback condition. Implications for future research on error monitoring and trait-anxiety are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Stimuli-Adaptable Materials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frankær, Sarah Maria Grundahl

    The work presented in this Thesis deals with the development of a stimuli-adaptable polymer material based on the UV-induced dimerisation of cinnamic acid and its derivatives. It is in the nature of an adhesive to adhere very well to its substrate and therefore problems can arise upon removal...

  3. Comparative genomics and proteomics of Helicobacter mustelae, an ulcerogenic and carcinogenic gastric pathogen

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    O'Toole, Paul W

    2010-03-10

    Abstract Background Helicobacter mustelae causes gastritis, ulcers and gastric cancer in ferrets and other mustelids. H. mustelae remains the only helicobacter other than H. pylori that causes gastric ulceration and cancer in its natural host. To improve understanding of H. mustelae pathogenesis, and the ulcerogenic and carcinogenic potential of helicobacters in general, we sequenced the H. mustelae genome, and identified 425 expressed proteins in the envelope and cytosolic proteome. Results The H. mustelae genome lacks orthologs of major H. pylori virulence factors including CagA, VacA, BabA, SabA and OipA. However, it encodes ten autotransporter surface proteins, seven of which were detected in the expressed proteome, and which, except for the Hsr protein, are of unknown function. There are 26 putative outer membrane proteins in H. mustelae, some of which are most similar to the Hof proteins of H. pylori. Although homologs of putative virulence determinants of H. pylori (NapA, plasminogen adhesin, collagenase) and Campylobacter jejuni (CiaB, Peb4a) are present in the H. mustelae genome, it also includes a distinct complement of virulence-related genes including a haemagglutinin\\/haemolysin protein, and a glycosyl transferase for producing blood group A\\/B on its lipopolysaccharide. The most highly expressed 264 proteins in the cytosolic proteome included many corresponding proteins from H. pylori, but the rank profile in H. mustelae was distinctive. Of 27 genes shown to be essential for H. pylori colonization of the gerbil, all but three had orthologs in H. mustelae, identifying a shared set of core proteins for gastric persistence. Conclusions The determination of the genome sequence and expressed proteome of the ulcerogenic species H mustelae provides a comparative model for H. pylori to investigate bacterial gastric carcinogenesis in mammals, and to suggest ways whereby cag minus H. pylori strains might cause ulceration and cancer. The genome sequence was

  4. Disrupted integration of sensory stimuli with information about the movement of the body as a mechanism explaining LSD-induced experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juszczak, Grzegorz R

    2017-03-01

    LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is a model psychedelic drug used to study mechanism underlying the effects induced by hallucinogens. However, despite advanced knowledge about molecular mechanism responsible for the effects induced by LSD and other related substances acting at serotonergic 5-HT 2a receptors, we still do not understand how these drugs trigger specific sensory experiences. LSD-induced experience is characterised by perception of movement in the environment and by presence of various bodily sensations such as floating in space, merging into surroundings and movement out of the physical body (the out-of-body experience). It means that a large part of the experience induced by the LSD can be simplified to the illusory movement that can be attributed to the self or to external objects. The phenomenology of the LSD-induced experience has been combined with the fact that serotonergic neurons provide all major parts of the brain with information about the level of tonic motor activity, occurrence of external stimuli and the execution of orienting responses. Therefore, it has been proposed that LSD-induced stimulation of 5-HT 2a receptors disrupts the integration of the sensory stimuli with information about the movement of the body leading to perception of illusory movement. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Enhancement of solubility, dissolution release profile and reduction in ulcerogenicity of piroxicam by inclusion complex with skimmed milk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanka, Krishna; Munjulury, Venkata Saidheeraj; Mohd, Abdul Bari; Diwan, Prakash V

    2014-11-01

    Piroxicam (PXM), a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug which is poorly soluble in water and ulcerogenic. Milk has been used against the gastric disturbances caused by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. In this study, skimmed milk (SKM) is used as the carrier for inclusion complex (IC) due to its surface active agent and amino acid content. To enhance the solubility, dissolution rate and prevent ulcerogenicity of PXM though IC with SKM. IC of PXM were prepared with SKM by solvent evaporation method using rota evaporator and were evaluated for solubility, dissolution, solid state characterization, drug excipient interaction, rat intestinal permeation, ulcerogenicity and histopathological studies. Solubility of PXM was enhanced 2.5 times with IC. The dissolution release and amount of PXM permeated through rat small intestine was enhanced significantly with IC. Decreases in the gastric lesion index values of IC were observed than physical mixture (PM) and free PXM. The histopathological studies revealed significant reduction in ulceration in rat stomach after treatment with IC. It is concluded that SKM is a good carrier to prepare IC of PXM for oral administration.

  6. System to induce and measure embodiment of an artificial hand with programmable convergent visual and tactile stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benz, Heather L; Sieff, Talia R; Alborz, Mahsa; Kontson, Kimberly; Kilpatrick, Elizabeth; Civillico, Eugene F

    2016-08-01

    The sense of prosthesis embodiment, or the feeling that the device has been incorporated into a user's body image, may be enhanced by emerging technology such as invasive electrical stimulation for sensory feedback. In turn, prosthesis embodiment may be linked to increased prosthesis use and improved functional outcomes. We describe the development of a tool to assay artificial hand embodiment in a quantitative way in people with intact limbs, and characterize its operation. The system delivers temporally coordinated visual and tactile stimuli at a programmable latency while recording limb temperature. When programmed to deliver visual and tactile stimuli synchronously, recorded latency between the two was 33 ± 24 ms in the final pilot subject. This system enables standardized assays of the conditions necessary for prosthesis embodiment.

  7. Distress intolerance moderation of motivated attention to cannabis and negative stimuli after induced stress among cannabis users: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macatee, Richard J; Okey, Sarah A; Albanese, Brian J; Schmidt, Norman B; Cougle, Jesse R

    2018-05-07

    Prevalence of cannabis use is increasing, but many regular users do not develop cannabis use disorder (CUD); thus, CUD risk identification among current users is vital for targeted intervention development. Existing data suggest that high distress intolerance (DI), an individual difference reflective of the ability to tolerate negative affect, may be linked to CUD, but no studies have tested possible neurophysiological mechanisms. Increased motivated attentional processing of cannabis and negative emotional stimuli as indexed by neurophysiology [i.e. the late positive potential (LPP)], particularly during acute stress, may contribute to CUD among high DI users. Frequent cannabis users with high (n = 61) and low DI (n = 44) viewed cannabis, negative, and matched neutral images during electroencephalography (EEG) recording before and after a laboratory stressor. Cannabis cue-elicited modulation of the 1000- to 3000-milliseconds LPP was larger in high DI users at post-stressor only, although the effect was only robust in the 1000- to 2000-milliseconds window. Further, modulation magnitude in the high DI group covaried with stress-relief craving and some CUD indices in the 400- to 1000-milliseconds and 1000- to 3000-milliseconds windows, respectively. No significant effects of DI on negative stimuli-elicited LPP modulation were found, although inverse associations with some CUD indices were observed. Finally, exploratory analyses revealed some evidence for DI moderation of the relation between subjective stressor reactivity and negative stimuli-elicited LPP modulation such that greater stressor reactivity was associated with blunted versus enhanced modulation in the high and low DI groups, respectively. Negative and cannabis stimuli-elicited LPP modulation appear to index distinct, CUD-relevant neural processes in high DI cannabis users. © 2018 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  8. Design, Synthesis, and Biological Evaluation of Some Novel Pyrrolizine Derivatives as COX Inhibitors with Anti-Inflammatory/Analgesic Activities and Low Ulcerogenic Liability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed M. Gouda

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs are the most commonly prescribed anti-inflammatory and pain relief medications. However, their use is associated with many drawbacks, including mainly serious gastric and renal complications. In an attempt to circumvent these risks, a set of N-(4-bromophenyl-7-cyano-6-substituted-H-pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide derivatives were designed, synthesized and evaluated as dual COX/5-LOX inhibitors. The structural elucidation, in vivo anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities using a carrageenan-induced rat paw edema model and hot plate assay, were performed, respectively. From the results obtained, it was found that the newly synthesized pyrrolizines exhibited IC50 values in the range of 2.45–5.69 µM and 0.85–3.44 µM for COX-1 and COX-2, respectively. Interestingly, compounds 12, 13, 16 and 17 showed higher anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities compared to ibuprofen. Among these derivatives, compounds 16 and 19 displayed better safety profile than ibuprofen in acute ulcerogenicity and histopathological studies. Furthermore, the docking studies revealed that compound 17 fits nicely into COX-1 and COX-2 binding sites with the highest binding affinity, while compound 16 exerted the highest binding affinity for 5-LOX. In light of these findings, these novel pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide derivatives represent a promising scaffold for further development into potential dual COX/5-LOX inhibitors with safer gastric profile.

  9. A sulphonamido-indanone derivative CGP 28237 (ZK 34228), a novel non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agent without gastro-intestinal ulcerogenicity in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böttcher, I; Schweizer, A; Glatt, M; Werner, H

    1987-01-01

    CGP 28237 (5-methylsulphonylamino-6-phenoxy-1-indanone) belongs to a series of structurally novel indanones. The compound is a weak acid (pK = 6.98), but it does not contain a carboxylic group. CGP 28237 exhibits potent anti-inflammatory activity in developing and established adjuvant arthritis in rats (ED40 approximately 0.5 mg/kg p.o.) and good activity in carrageenin oedema (ED40 approximately 3 mg/kg p.o.). It inhibits yeast-induced fever in rats with ED50 values of 1, 2 and 10 mg/kg p.o. at 1, 3 and 5 hours after drug administration. The antinociceptive activity in mice (phenyl-p-benzoquinone writhing) and rats (acetic-acid writhing) is weak. CGP 28237 has been shown to be non-ulcerogenic in rats under acute and chronic test conditions: it does not cause mucosal lesions in the stomach at 2 X 400 mg/kg p.o., it does not enhance gastro-intestinal blood loss during 10 days' oral treatment with 400 mg/kg p.o., and it did not induce gastro-intestinal lesions in a 4-week toxicity study up to 1000 mg/kg p.o. Although CGP 28237 is not a cyclooxygenase inhibitor in bovine seminal vesicle microsomes, it inhibits prostaglandin synthesis in zymosan-stimulated murine macrophages (IC50 approximately 3 X 10(-6) mol/l) and protects rabbits against arachidonic acid-induced lung embolism with 10 mg/kg p.o. CGP 28237 may represent a novel anti-inflammatory drug with excellent gastro-intestinal tolerability.

  10. Comparative study of anti-inflammatory, ulcerogenic and cytotoxic activities of racemate and S-ibuprofen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavio Henrique Nuevo Benez

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Ibuprofen is widely commercialized in racemic form. Although metabolic chiral inversion occurs through the conversion of R(--ibuprofen to S(+-ibuprofen and the latter enantiomer is considered the active form, clinical trials involving the administration of a racemate to S-enantiomer dosage ratio of 1:0.5 have demonstrated that S(+-ibuprofen is as efficacious as the racemic formulation. Moreover, the R(--enantiomer has been implicated in adverse gastrointestinal effects found with the racemic form, but the mechanisms involved in this process are not yet fully understood. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the anti-inflammatory activity of a racemate to S(+-ibuprofen dosage ratio of 1:0.5 using the carrageenan air pouch model of inflammation and determine both ulcerogenic activity and the chiral conversion rate in rats. An in vitro study of the cytotoxicity of racemate and S(+-ibuprofen in gastric cells was also performed. Although the plasma level of S(+-ibuprofen was raised after racemate administration, no significant difference was found in anti-inflammatory activity, as assessed by exudate formation, PGE2 production and leukocyte migration to the air pouches. Fewer gastric lesions were found after S(+-ibuprofen administration, despite the low gastric PGE2 content. In the in vitro study, the racemic compound proved more cytotoxic than S(+-ibuprofen. The present findings suggest that the S-enantiomer of ibuprofen could be considered a therapeutic alternative to minimize gastrointestinal side effects, since the chiral inversion of R(--ibuprofen to S(+-ibuprofen did not result in an improved anti-inflammatory response.

  11. Anti-ulcerogenic mechanisms of the sesquiterpene lactone onopordopicrin-enriched fraction from Arctium lappa L. (Asteraceae): role of somatostatin, gastrin, and endogenous sulfhydryls and nitric oxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Almeida, Ana Beatriz Albino; Luiz-Ferreira, Anderson; Cola, Maíra; Di Pietro Magri, Luciana; Batista, Leonia Maria; de Paiva, Joseilson Alves; Trigo, José Roberto; Souza-Brito, Alba R M

    2012-04-01

    Arctium lappa L. has been used in folk medicine as a diuretic, depurative, and digestive stimulant and in dermatological conditions. The mechanisms involved in the anti-ulcerogenic activity of the sesquiterpene onopordopicrin (ONP)-enriched fraction (termed the ONP fraction), obtained from A. lappa leaves, were studied. The gastroprotective mechanism of the ONP fraction was evaluated in experimental in vivo models in rodents, mimicking this disease in humans. ONP fraction (50 mg/kg, p.o.) significantly inhibited the mucosal injury induced by ethanol/HCl solution (75%), indomethacin/bethanecol (68.9%), and stress (58.3%). When the ONP fraction was investigated in pylorus ligature, it did not induce alteration in the gastric volume but did modify the pH and total acid concentration of gastric juice. ONP fraction significantly increased serum somatostatin levels (82.1±4.1 vs. control group 12.7±4 pmol/L) and decreased serum gastrin levels (62.6±6.04 vs. control group 361.5±8.2 μU/mL). Mucus production was not significantly altered by the ONP fraction. Gastroprotection by the ONP fraction was completely inhibited by N-ethylmaleimide treatment and did not modify the effect in the animals pretreated with l-N(G)-nitroarginine methyl ester. These results suggest an antisecretory mechanism involved with the antiulcerogenic effect of the ONP fraction. However, only endogenous sulfhydryls play an important role in gastroprotection of the ONP fraction.

  12. The role of salivary cortisol and DHEA-S in response to sexual, humorous, and anxiety-inducing stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, Lisa Dawn; Meston, Cindy M

    2011-05-01

    Stress and anxiety are commonly thought to be detrimental to sexual function. Several studies in both the human and animal literature, however, have found that inducing anxiety can enhance sexual function in women. The mechanisms that explain a negative relationship between physical and psychological stress and sexual functioning are well documented, but little is known about how stress or anxiety might have a facilitatory effect on sexual arousal. As an initial step in exploring the relationship between anxiety and sexual arousal, the present study examined the role of the autonomic nervous system, and the adrenal hormones cortisol and dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEA-S) in response to a sexual film, an anxiety-inducing film, and a humorous film. Nineteen premenopausal women (mean age 24.4 years) who were free from sexual difficulties came into the lab on three separate days. At each session they were shown an anxiety-inducing, sexually arousing, or humorous (control) film while their physiological arousal was measured. They also provided saliva samples before and after each film. Cortisol significantly decreased, while DHEA-S increased in the sexual and humorous conditions. Neither hormone changed significantly in the anxiety-inducing condition. Autonomic nervous system activity measured by heart rate and heart rate variability did not change in response to the sexual or anxiety-inducing films, but heart rate variability increased significantly in response to the humorous film. The cortisol/DHEA-S ratio at the post-sexual film time point was significantly negatively correlated with genital arousal (measured by vaginal pulse amplitude). Anxiety-inducing films did not result in a physiological stress response, which can explain why they do not impair sexual function. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Rapid fluctuations in extracellular brain glucose levels induced by natural arousing stimuli and intravenous cocaine: fueling the brain during neural activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenoir, Magalie

    2012-01-01

    Glucose, a primary energetic substrate for neural activity, is continuously influenced by two opposing forces that tend to either decrease its extracellular levels due to enhanced utilization in neural cells or increase its levels due to entry from peripheral circulation via enhanced cerebral blood flow. How this balance is maintained under physiological conditions and changed during neural activation remains unclear. To clarify this issue, enzyme-based glucose sensors coupled with high-speed amperometry were used in freely moving rats to evaluate fluctuations in extracellular glucose levels induced by brief audio stimulus, tail pinch (TP), social interaction with another rat (SI), and intravenous cocaine (1 mg/kg). Measurements were performed in nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr), which drastically differ in neuronal activity. In NAcc, where most cells are powerfully excited after salient stimulation, glucose levels rapidly (latency 2–6 s) increased (30–70 μM or 6–14% over baseline) by all stimuli; the increase differed in magnitude and duration for each stimulus. In SNr, where most cells are transiently inhibited by salient stimuli, TP, SI, and cocaine induced a biphasic glucose response, with the initial decrease (−20–40 μM or 5–10% below baseline) followed by a reboundlike increase. The critical role of neuronal activity in mediating the initial glucose response was confirmed by monitoring glucose currents after local microinjections of glutamate (GLU) or procaine (PRO). While intra-NAcc injection of GLU transiently increased glucose levels in this structure, intra-SNr PRO injection resulted in rapid, transient decreases in SNr glucose. Therefore, extracellular glucose levels in the brain change very rapidly after physiological and pharmacological stimulation, the response is structure specific, and the pattern of neuronal activity appears to be a critical factor determining direction and magnitude of physiological

  14. A study of the effect of propolis against gastric ulcers induced in gamma -irradiated rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abd El-Aziz, R.R

    2009-01-01

    The anti-ulcerogenic activity of propolis or bee glue, a natural product from honey bees, was investigated against indomethacin -induced gastric ulcers in non- irradiated and irradiated rats, and the effects were compared with those of the proton pump inhibitor lansoprazole, as a reference anti-ulcerogenic drug. Indomethacin-induced gastric ulcer was used in this study as a model of experimentally induced gastric ulceration. The anti-ulcerogenic, antisecretory and cytoprotective activities of 13% aqueous propolis extract (APE) were assessed. Gastric contents of animals were sampled for the measurement of free acidity, acid output, mucin and pepsin concentrations in the gastric juice. The stomach was examined macroscopically for the determination of the ulcer index. PGE 2 was assayed in the gastric mucosa, while the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β as well as the oxidative stress marker MDA were determined in the plasma.

  15. The role of salivary cortisol and DHEA-S in response to sexual, humorous, and anxiety-inducing stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Hamilton, Lisa Dawn; Meston, Cindy M.

    2010-01-01

    Stress and anxiety are commonly thought to be detrimental to sexual function. Several studies in both the human and animal literature, however, have found that inducing anxiety can enhance sexual function in women. The mechanisms that explain a negative relationship between physical and psychological stress and sexual functioning are well documented, but little is known about how stress or anxiety might have a facilitatory effect on sexual arousal. As an initial step in exploring the relation...

  16. RAC3 nuclear receptor co-activator has a protective role in the apoptosis induced by different stimuli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Colo, Georgina P.; Rubio, Maria F.; Alvarado, Cecilia V.; Costas, Monica A.

    2007-01-01

    RAC3 belongs to the family of p160 nuclear receptors co activators and it is over-expressed in several tumors. We have previously shown that RAC3 is a NF-κB co activator. In this paper, we investigated the role of RAC3 in cell-sensitivity to apoptosis, using H 2 O 2 in the human embryonic kidney cell line (HEK293), and tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis inducing ligand (TRAIL) in a human chronic myeloid leukemia cell line (K562) naturally resistant to TRAIL. We observed that the tumoral K562 cells have high levels of RAC3 if compared with the non-tumoral HEK293 cells. The normal or transfected co activator over-expression inhibits apoptosis through a diminished caspase activity and AIF nuclear translocation, increased NF--κB, AKT and p38, and decreased ERK activities. In contrast, inhibition of RAC3 by siRNA induced sensitivity of K562 to TRAIL-induced apoptosis. Such results suggest that over-expression of RAC3 contributes to tumor development through molecular mechanisms that do not depend strictly on acetylation and/or steroid hormones, which control cell death. This could be a possible target for future tumor therapies. (author) [es

  17. Synthesis, cyclooxygenase inhibition, anti-inflammatory evaluation and ulcerogenic liability of new 1-phenylpyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidine derivatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakr, Rania B; Azouz, Amany A; Abdellatif, Khaled R A

    2016-01-01

    A new group of 1-phenylpyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidine derivatives 14a-d-21 were synthesized from 2-(6-methyl-1-phenyl-1H-pyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidin-4-yloxy)acetohydrazide (12). All the synthesized compounds were evaluated for their cyclooxygenase (COX) inhibition, anti-inflammatory activity and ulcerogenic liability. All the target compounds were more potential in inhibiting COX-2 than COX-1. Compounds having pyrazolyl moiety in a hybrid structure with pyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidine scaffold (14a-d, 16 and 17) showed higher edema inhibition percentage activities (34-68%) and the 5-aminopyrazole derivative (14c, ED 50  =   87.9 μmol/kg) was the most potent one > celecoxib (ED 50  =   91.9 μmol/kg). While, the in vivo potent compounds (14a-d, 16, 17 and 21) caused variable ulceration effect (ulcer index   = 0.33-4.0) comparable to that of celecoxib (ulcer index   = 0.33), the pyrazol-3-one derivative (16) and the acetohydrazide (21) were the least ulcerogenic derivatives showing the same ulcerogenic potential of celecoxib.

  18. Biphasic effect of duodenal ulcerogens cysteamine (C), mepirizole (M) and 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropryridine (MPTP) on gastric emptying in the rat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pihan, G.; Kline, T.J.; Szabo, S.

    1986-03-01

    The effect of acute or chronic administration of duodenal ulcerogens on gastric emptying (GE) of a liquid meal was investigated. In Sprague-Dawley rats (150-200g) 2 ml of /sup 51/Cr in 2% dextrose (5000 CPM) was given intragastrically and the GE half life was established as 7.6 min (controls). In acute experiments, C (30mg/100g), M (40mg/100g) or MPTP (4mg/100g) injected subcutaneously all delayed GE at 1, 2, 4, 8 and 24 hr by 15-77%. Maximal GE delay (p<0.05) by 77, 48 or 71% was found 1, 1 or 2 hr after C, M or MPTP, respectively. In chronic experiments, C (22mg/100g) was given x3 on the first day and once daily (25mg/100g) for 3 or 10 additional days. M (20mg/100g) once daily and MPTP (4mg/100g) x3 daily were given for 4 or 11 days. GE was measured on the 5th and 12th day. Chronically, MPTP accelerated GE by 63 and 31% at 5 and 12 days (p<0.05) and C and M did not change GE. The severity of duodenal ulcers correlated (p<0.05) with the amount of /sup 51/Cr remaining in the stomach: r=-0.68, -0.74 and -0.70 after C, M and MPTP, respectively. Acute administration of duodenal ulcerogens delay GE in rats. Chronic treatment with duodenal ulcerogens either accelerates or does not change GE. The most severe chronic ulcers exhibit the most rapid emptying. The authors data suggest that rapid GE might be a secondary rather than a primary alteration in duodenal ulceration.

  19. Peptic Ulcer Disease Risk in Chronic Kidney Disease: Ten-Year Incidence, Ulcer Location, and Ulcerogenic Effect of Medications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Chih-Chia; Muo, Chih-Hsin; Wang, I-Kuan; Chang, Chiz-Tzung; Chou, Che-Yi; Liu, Jiung-Hsiun; Yen, Tzung-Hai; Huang, Chiu-Ching; Chung, Chi-Jung

    2014-01-01

    Objectives We aimed at determining peptic ulcer disease (PUD) incidence among chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients during 1998–2008, compared to patients without CKD, and at examining associations between CKD and PUD. Methods Data for 1998–2008 were extracted from the National Health Insurance Research Database in Taiwan. The annual PUD incidence (cases per thousand persons per year) was calculated separately for patients with and without CKD. Characteristics of patients with newly diagnosed PUD (n = 16322) were compared to those of a control group without PUD (n = 32644). The 2 groups were matched for age, sex, and index year. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated by logistic regression. Results Over the 10-year period, the PUD incidence was ∼10–12 times higher in CKD patients than in those without CKD. Its incidence in elderly CKD patients increased rapidly over time. For CKD patients, most PUD events (>95%) were managed during hospitalization. Peptic ulcer risk, adjusted for all potential confounders, was much higher in CKD patients undergoing hemodialysis (adjusted OR, 9.74; 95% CI, 7.11–13.31). Maintenance hemodialysis patients were 2 times more likely to have gastric ulcers than duodenal ulcers, while CKD patients not on dialysis had similar risks for both. There were no significant interactions between medications and CKD status on the peptic ulcer risk. Unlike CKD patients on nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and clopidogrel, those on aspirin did not have a higher peptic ulcer risk (adjusted OR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.44–1.77). Conclusions CKD patients have a substantially increased PUD risk, and the majority of CKD patients with PUD require hospital management. Further, peptic ulcer risk is affected by hemodialysis therapy, patient status (inpatient vs. outpatient), and ulcerogenic medications. PMID:24498412

  20. Ethyl cellulose nanoparticles as a platform to decrease ulcerogenic potential of piroxicam: formulation and in vitro/in vivo evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Habashy, Salma E; Allam, Ahmed N; El-Kamel, Amal H

    2016-01-01

    Nanoparticles (NPs) have long gained significant interest for their use in various drug formulations in order to increase bioavailability, prolong drug release, and decrease side effects of highly toxic drugs. The objective of this investigation was to evaluate the potential of ethyl cellulose-based NPs (EC-NPs) to modulate the release and reduce ulcerogenicity of piroxicam (PX) after oral administration. PX-loaded EC-NPs were prepared by solvent evaporation technique using different stabilizers at three concentration levels. Morphological examination of selected formulas confirmed the formation of spherical NPs with slightly porous surface. Formulation containing poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs (P188/0.2), having a particle size of 240.26±29.24 nm, polydispersity index of 0.562±0.030, entrapment efficiency of 85.29%±1.57%, and modulated release of PX (88% after 12 hours), was selected as the optimum formulation. Differential scanning calorimetry demonstrated the presence of PX in an amorphous form in the NPs. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy revealed the possible formation of hydrogen bond and the absence of chemical interaction. In vivo study, evaluation of pharmacokinetic parameters, evaluation of gastric irritation potential, and histological examination were conducted after administration of the selected formulation. Time to reach maximum plasma concentration, t max, of poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs was significantly higher than that of Feldene(®) 20 mg capsules (P≤0.001). Encapsulation of the acidic, gastric offender PX into NPs managed to significantly suppress gastric ulceration potential in rats (P≤0.05) as compared to that of PX suspension. A reduction of 66% in mean ulcer index was observed. In conclusion, poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs (P188/0.2) had a significant potential of offsetting deleterious side effects common in PX use.

  1. Testing day: The effects of processing bias induced by Navon stimuli on the strength of the Müller-Lyer illusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mundy, Matthew E

    2014-01-01

    Explanations for the cognitive basis of the Müller-Lyer illusion are still frustratingly mixed. To date, Day's (1989) theory of perceptual compromise has received little empirical attention. In this study, we examine the merit of Day's hypothesis for the Müller-Lyer illusion by biasing participants toward global or local visual processing through exposure to Navon (1977) stimuli, which are known to alter processing level preference for a short time. Participants (N = 306) were randomly allocated to global, local, or control conditions. Those in global or local conditions were exposed to Navon stimuli for 5 min and participants were required to report on the global or local stimulus features, respectively. Subsequently, participants completed a computerized Müller-Lyer experiment where they adjusted the length of a line to match an illusory-figure. The illusion was significantly stronger for participants with a global bias, and significantly weaker for those with a local bias, compared with the control condition. These findings provide empirical support for Day's "conflicting cues" theory of perceptual compromise in the Müller-Lyer illusion.

  2. α-Mangostin from Cratoxylum arborescens (Vahl Blume Demonstrates Anti-Ulcerogenic Property: A Mechanistic Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heyam M. A. Sidahmed

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Cratoxylum arborescens (Vahl Blume is an Asian herbal medicine with versatile ethnobiological properties including treatment of gastric ulcer. This study evaluated the antiulcerogenic mechanism(s of α-mangostin (AM in a rat model of ulcer. AM is a prenylated xanthone derived through biologically guided fractionation of C. arborescens. Rats were orally pretreated with AM and subsequently exposed to acute gastric lesions induced by ethanol. Following treatment, ulcer index, gastric juice acidity, mucus content, histological and immunohistochemical analyses, glutathione (GSH, malondialdehyde (MDA, nitric oxide (NO, and nonprotein sulfhydryl groups (NP-SH were evaluated. The anti-Helicobacter pylori, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2 inhibitory effect, and antioxidant activity of AM were also investigated in vitro. AM (10 and 30 mg/kg inhibited significantly (P<0.05 ethanol-induced gastric lesions by 66.04% and 74.39 %, respectively. The compound induces the expression of Hsp70, restores GSH levels, decreases lipid peroxidation, and inhibits COX-2 activity. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC of AM showed an effective in vitro anti-H. pylori activity. The efficacy of the AM was accomplished safely without presenting any toxicological parameters. The results of the present study indicate that the antioxidant properties and the potent anti-H. pylori, in addition to activation of Hsp70 protein, may contribute to the gastroprotective activity of α-mangostin.

  3. A natural flavonoid present in unripe plantain banana pulp (Musa sapientum L. var. paradisiaca) protects the gastric mucosa from aspirin-induced erosions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, D A; Fields, W N; Shaw, G P

    1999-06-01

    The active anti-ulcerogenic ingredient was extracted from unripe plantain banana by solvent fractionation and identified by chromatography, spectroscopy and high performance liquid chromatography as the flavonoid leucocyanidin. Dried unripe plantain banana powder, the extracted leucocyanidin and a purified synthetic leucocyanidin demonstrated a significant (P < 0.05) protective effect against aspirin-induced erosions.

  4. Ethyl cellulose nanoparticles as a platform to decrease ulcerogenic potential of piroxicam: formulation and in vitro/in vivo evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    El-Habashy SE

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Salma E El-Habashy, Ahmed N Allam, Amal H El-Kamel Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt Abstract: Nanoparticles (NPs have long gained significant interest for their use in various drug formulations in order to increase bioavailability, prolong drug release, and decrease side effects of highly toxic drugs. The objective of this investigation was to evaluate the potential of ethyl cellulose-based NPs (EC-NPs to modulate the release and reduce ulcerogenicity of piroxicam (PX after oral administration. PX-loaded EC-NPs were prepared by solvent evaporation technique using different stabilizers at three concentration levels. Morphological examination of selected formulas confirmed the formation of spherical NPs with slightly porous surface. Formulation containing poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs (P188/0.2, having a particle size of 240.26±29.24 nm, polydispersity index of 0.562±0.030, entrapment efficiency of 85.29%±1.57%, and modulated release of PX (88% after 12 hours, was selected as the optimum formulation. Differential scanning calorimetry demonstrated the presence of PX in an amorphous form in the NPs. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy revealed the possible formation of hydrogen bond and the absence of chemical interaction. In vivo study, evaluation of pharmacokinetic parameters, evaluation of gastric irritation potential, and histological examination were conducted after administration of the selected formulation. Time to reach maximum plasma concentration, tmax, of poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs was significantly higher than that of Feldene® 20 mg capsules (P≤0.001. Encapsulation of the acidic, gastric offender PX into NPs managed to significantly suppress gastric ulceration potential in rats (P≤0.05 as compared to that of PX suspension. A reduction of 66% in mean ulcer index was observed. In conclusion, poloxamer-stabilized EC-NPs (P188/0.2 had a significant potential of

  5. Vection is modulated by the semantic meaning of stimuli and experimental instructions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogawa, Masaki; Seno, Takeharu

    2014-01-01

    Vection strength is modulated by the semantic meanings of stimuli. In experiment 1--even though vection stimuli were of uniform size, color, and luminance--when they also had semantic meaning as falling objects, vection was inhibited. Specifically, stimuli perceived as feathers, petals, and leaves did not effectively induce vection. In experiment 2 we used the downward motion of identical dots to induce vection. Participants observed stimuli while holding either an umbrella or a wooden sword. Results showed that vection was inhibited when participants held the umbrella and the stimuli was perceived as rain or snow falling. The two experiments suggest that vection is modulated by the semantic meaning of stimuli.

  6. Cardiorespiratory interactions to external stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardi, L; Porta, C; Spicuzza, L; Sleight, P

    2005-09-01

    Respiration is a powerful modulator of heart rate variability, and of baro- or chemo-reflex sensitivity. This occurs via a mechanical effect of breathing that synchronizes all cardiovascular variables at the respiratory rhythm, particularly when this occurs at a particular slow rate coincident with the Mayer waves in arterial pressure (approximately 6 cycles/min). Recitation of the rosary prayer (or of most mantras), induces a marked enhancement of these slow rhythms, whereas random verbalization or random breathing does not. This phenomenon in turn increases baroreflex sensitivity and reduces chemoreflex sensitivity, leading to increases in parasympathetic and reductions in sympathetic activity. The opposite can be seen during either verbalization or mental stress tests. Qualitatively similar effects can be obtained even by passive listening to more or less rhythmic auditory stimuli, such as music, and the speed of the rhythm (rather than the style) appears to be one of the main determinants of the cardiovascular and respiratory responses. These findings have clinical relevance. Appropriate modulation of breathing, can improve/restore autonomic control of cardiovascular and respiratory systems in relevant diseases such as hypertension and heart failure, and might therefore help improving exercise tolerance, quality of life, and ultimately, survival.

  7. Haustoria of Cuscuta japonica, a holoparasitic flowering plant, are induced by the cooperative effects of far-red light and tactile stimuli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tada, Y.; Sugai, M.; Furuhashi, K.

    1996-01-01

    When seedlings of Cuscuta japonica were grown with Vigna radiata in a flower pot for 6 d under white light and then irradiated with far-red or blue light, the seedlings parasitized V. radiata. However, no parasitism of the seedlings was observed under red or white light or in darkness. The parasitic behavior of seedlings of C. japonica was observed even if an acrylic rod was used as a substitute for the host plant. Upon incubation under far-red light, the seedling twined tightly around the rod and developed haustoria towards it. Haustoria also developed when apical and subapical regions of seedlings were held between two glass plants that were about 0.7 mm apart and were irradiated with far-red light. However, no haustoria were induced by either the hold or irradiation alone. These results indicate that parasitism of cuscuta japonica is controlled by the cooperative effects of two physical signals, far-red light and appropriate tactile pressure. Our findings suggest that parasitism by the genus Cuscuta involves a novel strategy

  8. Stimuli Responsive Amphiphilic Assemblies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-18

    Enzyme- Sensitive, Amphiphilic- Dendrimer -Based Nanoparticles through Photochemical Crosslinking, Chemistry - A European Journal, (10 2011): 0. doi...17, 2012 (Organizers: R. P. Singh) 8th International Dendrimer Symposium (IDS-8), Madrid, Spain, June 23-27, 2013 (Organizers: Dr. M’Angeles...investigate the pH-induced changes in surface properties. Nanocarriers that can be effectively transported across cellular membranes have potential in a

  9. Stimuli-Responsive Polymeric Nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaolin; Yang, Ying; Urban, Marek W

    2017-07-01

    There is increasing evidence that stimuli-responsive nanomaterials have become significantly critical components of modern materials design and technological developments. Recent advances in synthesis and fabrication of stimuli-responsive polymeric nanoparticles with built-in stimuli-responsive components (Part A) and surface modifications of functional nanoparticles that facilitate responsiveness (Part B) are outlined here. The synthesis and construction of stimuli-responsive spherical, core-shell, concentric, hollow, Janus, gibbous/inverse gibbous, and cocklebur morphologies are discussed in Part A, with the focus on shape, color, or size changes resulting from external stimuli. Although inorganic/metallic nanoparticles exhibit many useful properties, including thermal or electrical conductivity, catalytic activity, or magnetic properties, their assemblies and formation of higher order constructs are often enhanced by surface modifications. Section B focuses on selected surface reactions that lead to responsiveness achieved by decorating nanoparticles with stimuli-responsive polymers. Although grafting-to and grafting-from dominate these synthetic efforts, there are opportunities for developing novel synthetic approaches facilitating controllable recognition, signaling, or sequential responses. Many nanotechnologies utilize a combination of organic and inorganic phases to produce ceramic or metallic nanoparticles. One can envision the development of new properties by combining inorganic (metals, metal oxides) and organic (polymer) phases into one nanoparticle designated as "ceramers" (inorganics) and "metamers" (metallic). © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. Emotional stimuli and motor conversion disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Voon, V.; Brezing, C.; Gallea, C.; Ameli, R.; Roelofs, K.; LaFrance, W.C.; Hallett, M.

    2010-01-01

    Conversion disorder is characterized by neurological signs and symptoms related to an underlying psychological issue. Amygdala activity to affective stimuli is well characterized in healthy volunteers with greater amygdala activity to both negative and positive stimuli relative to neutral stimuli,

  11. In vivo evidence suggesting reciprocal renal hypoxia-inducible factor-1 upregulation and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 activation in response to hypoxic and non-hypoxic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nechemia-Arbely, Yael; Khamaisi, Mogher; Rosenberger, Christian; Koesters, Robert; Shina, Ahuva; Geva, Carmit; Shriki, Anat; Klaus, Stephen; Rosen, Seymour; Rose-John, Stefan; Galun, Eithan; Axelrod, Jonathan H; Heyman, Samuel N

    2013-04-01

    In vitro studies suggest that combined activation of hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) promotes the hypoxia response. However, their interrelationship in vivo remains poorly defined. The present study investigated the possible relationship between HIF-1 upregulation and STAT3 activation in the rodent kidney in vivo. Activation of HIF-1 and STAT3 was analysed by immunohistochemical staining and western blot analysis in: (i) models of hypoxia-associated kidney injury induced by radiocontrast media or rhabdomyolysis; (ii) following activation of STAT3 by the interleukin (IL)-6-soluble IL-6 receptor complex; or (iii) following HIF-1α stabilization using hypoxic and non-hypoxic stimuli (mimosine, FG-4497, CO, CoCl(2)) and in targeted von Hippel-Lindau-knockout mice. Western blot analysis and immunostaining revealed marked induction of both transcription factors under all conditions tested, suggesting that in vivo STAT3 can trigger HIF and vice versa. Colocalization of HIF-1α and phosphorylated STAT3 was detected in some, but not all, renal cell types, suggesting that in some cells a paracrine mechanism may be responsible for the reciprocal activation of the two transcription factors. Nevertheless, in several cell types spatial concordance was observed under the majority of conditions tested, suggesting that HIF-1 and STAT3 may act as cotranscription factors. These in vivo studies suggest that, in response to renal hypoxic-stress, upregulation of HIF-1 and activation of STAT3 may be both reciprocal and cell type dependent. © 2013 The Authors Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology © 2013 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  12. Simulation of Stimuli-Responsive Polymer Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Gruhn

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The structure and material properties of polymer networks can depend sensitively on changes in the environment. There is a great deal of progress in the development of stimuli-responsive hydrogels for applications like sensors, self-repairing materials or actuators. Biocompatible, smart hydrogels can be used for applications, such as controlled drug delivery and release, or for artificial muscles. Numerical studies have been performed on different length scales and levels of details. Macroscopic theories that describe the network systems with the help of continuous fields are suited to study effects like the stimuli-induced deformation of hydrogels on large scales. In this article, we discuss various macroscopic approaches and describe, in more detail, our phase field model, which allows the calculation of the hydrogel dynamics with the help of a free energy that considers physical and chemical impacts. On a mesoscopic level, polymer systems can be modeled with the help of the self-consistent field theory, which includes the interactions, connectivity, and the entropy of the polymer chains, and does not depend on constitutive equations. We present our recent extension of the method that allows the study of the formation of nano domains in reversibly crosslinked block copolymer networks. Molecular simulations of polymer networks allow the investigation of the behavior of specific systems on a microscopic scale. As an example for microscopic modeling of stimuli sensitive polymer networks, we present our Monte Carlo simulations of a filament network system with crosslinkers.

  13. Perceiving, imaging, and preferring physiognomic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindauer, M S

    1986-01-01

    Physiognomic color responses in perception, imagery, and affect were investigated. Maluma and taketa, nonsense stimuli defined by many investigators as physiognomic, were utilized as prototypical physiognomic stimuli, along with eight other stimuli of various sorts. In Experiment 1, 22 subjects matched the colors of the stimuli; in Experiment 2, 27 subjects reported their imagery to the stimuli; and in Experiment 3, 16 subjects gave their color preferences for the stimuli. The Munsell sets of colors were employed throughout. Significant differences between the physiognomic and other stimuli were found on the brightness and saturation of color matches, images, and preferences. Other differences (e.g., the latency of color images) were also present. Distinctions were also noted between the two physiognomic stimuli. These results support the priority of innate and perceptual processes in physiognomy over those of learning and memory, although some ambiguities still remain.

  14. New approaches to reduce ulcerogenity of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: achievements, unsolved issues and ways to optimize

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. V. Hladkykh

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Analysis of the domestic and foreign literature sources devoted to the study of pathogenetic mechanisms of gastropathy caused by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs was done. Current approaches of prevention and treatment of NSAID-induced gastropathy were lined. The appropriateness of drugs with polytropic pharmacological properties (Quercetin, Vinboron and Tiotriazolin to eliminate the side effects of NSAIDs, including ultserogenesis was discusses.

  15. [The P300-based brain-computer interface: presentation of the complex "flash + movement" stimuli].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganin, I P; Kaplan, A Ia

    2014-01-01

    The P300 based brain-computer interface requires the detection of P300 wave of brain event-related potentials. Most of its users learn the BCI control in several minutes and after the short classifier training they can type a text on the computer screen or assemble an image of separate fragments in simple BCI-based video games. Nevertheless, insufficient attractiveness for users and conservative stimuli organization in this BCI may restrict its integration into real information processes control. At the same time initial movement of object (motion-onset stimuli) may be an independent factor that induces P300 wave. In current work we checked the hypothesis that complex "flash + movement" stimuli together with drastic and compact stimuli organization on the computer screen may be much more attractive for user while operating in P300 BCI. In 20 subjects research we showed the effectiveness of our interface. Both accuracy and P300 amplitude were higher for flashing stimuli and complex "flash + movement" stimuli compared to motion-onset stimuli. N200 amplitude was maximal for flashing stimuli, while for "flash + movement" stimuli and motion-onset stimuli it was only a half of it. Similar BCI with complex stimuli may be embedded into compact control systems requiring high level of user attention under impact of negative external effects obstructing the BCI control.

  16. Effect of expectation on pain assessment of lower- and higher-intensity stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ružić, Valentina; Ivanec, Dragutin; Modić Stanke, Koraljka

    2017-01-01

    Pain modulation via expectation is a well-documented phenomenon. So far it has been shown that expectations about effectiveness of a certain treatment enhance the effectiveness of different analgesics and of drug-free pain treatments. Also, studies demonstrate that people assess same-intensity stimuli differently, depending on the experimentally induced expectations regarding the characteristics of the stimuli. Prolonged effect of expectation on pain perception and possible symmetry in conditions of lower- and higher-intensity stimuli is yet to be studied. Aim of this study is to determine the effect of expectation on the perception of pain experimentally induced by the series of higher- and lower-intensity stimuli. 192 healthy participants were assigned to four experimental groups differing by expectations regarding the intensity of painful stimuli series. Expectations of two groups were congruent with actual stimuli; one group expected and received lower-intensity stimuli and the other expected and received higher-intensity stimuli. Expectations of the remaining two groups were not congruent with actual stimuli; one group expected higher-intensity stimuli, but actually received lower-intensity stimuli while the other group expected lower-intensity stimuli, but in fact received higher-intensity ones. Each group received a series of 24 varied-intensity electrical stimuli rated by the participants on a 30° intensity scale. Expectation manipulation had statistically significant effect on pain intensity assessment. When expecting lower-intensity stimuli, the participants underestimated pain intensity and when expecting higher-intensity stimuli, they overestimated pain intensity. The effect size of expectations upon pain intensity assessment was equal for both lower- and higher-intensity stimuli. The obtained results imply that expectation manipulation can achieve the desired effect of decreasing or increasing both slight and more severe pain for a longer period of

  17. Emotional Stimuli and Motor Conversion Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voon, Valerie; Brezing, Christina; Gallea, Cecile; Ameli, Rezvan; Roelofs, Karin; LaFrance, W. Curt, Jr.; Hallett, Mark

    2010-01-01

    Conversion disorder is characterized by neurological signs and symptoms related to an underlying psychological issue. Amygdala activity to affective stimuli is well characterized in healthy volunteers with greater amygdala activity to both negative and positive stimuli relative to neutral stimuli, and greater activity to negative relative to…

  18. Positive mood broadens visual attention to positive stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wadlinger, Heather A; Isaacowitz, Derek M

    2006-03-01

    In an attempt to investigate the impact of positive emotions on visual attention within the context of Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build model, eye tracking was used in two studies to measure visual attentional preferences of college students (n=58, n=26) to emotional pictures. Half of each sample experienced induced positive mood immediately before viewing slides of three similarly-valenced images, in varying central-peripheral arrays. Attentional breadth was determined by measuring the percentage viewing time to peripheral images as well as by the number of visual saccades participants made per slide. Consistent with Fredrickson's theory, the first study showed that individuals induced into positive mood fixated more on peripheral stimuli than did control participants; however, this only held true for highly-valenced positive stimuli. Participants under induced positive mood also made more frequent saccades for slides of neutral and positive valence. A second study showed that these effects were not simply due to differences in emotional arousal between stimuli. Selective attentional broadening to positive stimuli may act both to facilitate later building of resources as well as to maintain current positive affective states.

  19. The mechanism of gastrin release in cysteamine-induced duodenal ulcer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Steen Seier

    1982-01-01

    a rise in serum gastrin from 29 +/- 5 pg/ml to a maximum of 203 +/- 62 pg/ml after 3 h in unoperated rats, whereas no rise was seen in vagotomized or antrectomized rats. The beta-adrenergic blocking agent propranolol strongly inhibited cysteamine-induced gastrin release, whereas atropine dependent......Duodenal ulcer can be induced in rats by a single dose of cysteamine. The ulcer formation is accompanied by acid hypersecretion and elevated serum gastrin levels. This study was performed to elucidate the mechanisms of gastrin release after an ulcerogenic dose of cysteamine. Cysteamine induced...

  20. Response of cat cerebellar vermis induced by sound. II. The role of the mossy and climbing fibers in acoustic transmission to the cerebellar cortex and influence of stimuli parameters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jastreboff, P J; Tarnecki, R

    1975-01-01

    Experiments were performed on cats under Chloralose or Nembutal anesthesia. The parameters of the acoustic click stimuli were found to have a strong influence on the responses registered from both the surface of the cerebellar vermis lobuli V up VII as well as from single units. It was shown that a stimulus frequency rate not greater than 1/2 s should be used, since higher frequencies caused strong attenuation of the response. The type of anesthesia did not change the latencies of reactions of both evoked potentials and single units. However, decreasing the strength of the click resulted in increased response latencies, in the case of single unit reactions. A very strong influence of weak visual stimuli on units was also observed. It is suggested that mossy fibers are the most important fibers in the transmission of acoustic information to the cerebellar cortex.

  1. Does the amygdala response correlate with the personality trait 'harm avoidance' while evaluating emotional stimuli explicitly?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Schuerbeek, Peter; Baeken, Chris; Luypaert, Robert; De Raedt, Rudi; De Mey, Johan

    2014-05-07

    The affective personality trait 'harm avoidance' (HA) from Cloninger's psychobiological personality model determines how an individual deals with emotional stimuli. Emotional stimuli are processed by a neural network that include the left and right amygdalae as important key nodes. Explicit, implicit and passive processing of affective stimuli are known to activate the amygdalae differently reflecting differences in attention, level of detailed analysis of the stimuli and the cognitive control needed to perform the required task. Previous studies revealed that implicit processing or passive viewing of affective stimuli, induce a left amygdala response that correlates with HA. In this new study we have tried to extend these findings to the situation in which the subjects were required to explicitly process emotional stimuli. A group of healthy female participants was asked to rate the valence of positive and negative stimuli while undergoing fMRI. Afterwards the neural responses of the participants to the positive and to the negative stimuli were separately correlated to their HA scores and compared between the low and high HA participants. Both analyses revealed increased neural activity in the left laterobasal (LB) amygdala of the high HA participants while they were rating the positive and the negative stimuli. Our results indicate that the left amygdala response to explicit processing of affective stimuli does correlate with HA.

  2. Virtual reality stimuli for force platform posturography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tossavainen, Timo; Juhola, Martti; Ilmari, Pyykö; Aalto, Heikki; Toppila, Esko

    2002-01-01

    People relying much on vision in the control of posture are known to have an elevated risk of falling. Dependence on visual control is an important parameter in the diagnosis of balance disorders. We have previously shown that virtual reality methods can be used to produce visual stimuli that affect balance, but suitable stimuli need to be found. In this study the effect of six different virtual reality stimuli on the balance of 22 healthy test subjects was evaluated using force platform posturography. According to the tests two of the stimuli have a significant effect on balance.

  3. Stimuli responsive nanomaterials for controlled release applications

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Song; Li, Wengang; Khashab, Niveen M.

    2012-01-01

    applications. Stimuli-responsive nanomaterials guarantee the controlled release of cargo to a given location, at a specific time, and with an accurate amount. In this review, we have combined the major stimuli that are currently used to achieve the ultimate

  4. Instructed fear stimuli bias visual attention

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Deltomme, Berre; Mertens, G.; Tibboel, Helen; Braem, Senne

    We investigated whether stimuli merely instructed to be fear-relevant can bias visual attention, even when the fear relation was never experienced before. Participants performed a dot-probe task with pictures of naturally fear-relevant (snake or spider) or -irrelevant (bird or butterfly) stimuli.

  5. Happiness increases distraction by auditory deviant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacheco-Unguetti, Antonia Pilar; Parmentier, Fabrice B R

    2016-08-01

    Rare and unexpected changes (deviants) in an otherwise repeated stream of task-irrelevant auditory distractors (standards) capture attention and impair behavioural performance in an ongoing visual task. Recent evidence indicates that this effect is increased by sadness in a task involving neutral stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that such effect may not be limited to negative emotions but reflect a general depletion of attentional resources by examining whether a positive emotion (happiness) would increase deviance distraction too. Prior to performing an auditory-visual oddball task, happiness or a neutral mood was induced in participants by means of the exposure to music and the recollection of an autobiographical event. Results from the oddball task showed significantly larger deviance distraction following the induction of happiness. Interestingly, the small amount of distraction typically observed on the standard trial following a deviant trial (post-deviance distraction) was not increased by happiness. We speculate that happiness might interfere with the disengagement of attention from the deviant sound back towards the target stimulus (through the depletion of cognitive resources and/or mind wandering) but help subsequent cognitive control to recover from distraction. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.

  6. Adaptation to Variance of Stimuli in Drosophila Larva Navigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolk, Jason; Gepner, Ruben; Gershow, Marc

    In order to respond to stimuli that vary over orders of magnitude while also being capable of sensing very small changes, neural systems must be capable of rapidly adapting to the variance of stimuli. We study this adaptation in Drosophila larvae responding to varying visual signals and optogenetically induced fictitious odors using an infrared illuminated arena and custom computer vision software. Larval navigational decisions (when to turn) are modeled as the output a linear-nonlinear Poisson process. The development of the nonlinear turn rate in response to changes in variance is tracked using an adaptive point process filter determining the rate of adaptation to different stimulus profiles. Supported by NIH Grant 1DP2EB022359 and NSF Grant PHY-1455015.

  7. Psychophysiological effects of audiovisual stimuli during cycle exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barreto-Silva, Vinícius; Bigliassi, Marcelo; Chierotti, Priscila; Altimari, Leandro R

    2018-05-01

    Immersive environments induced by audiovisual stimuli are hypothesised to facilitate the control of movements and ameliorate fatigue-related symptoms during exercise. The objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of pleasant and unpleasant audiovisual stimuli on perceptual and psychophysiological responses during moderate-intensity exercises performed on an electromagnetically braked cycle ergometer. Twenty young adults were administered three experimental conditions in a randomised and counterbalanced order: unpleasant stimulus (US; e.g. images depicting laboured breathing); pleasant stimulus (PS; e.g. images depicting pleasant emotions); and neutral stimulus (NS; e.g. neutral facial expressions). The exercise had 10 min of duration (2 min of warm-up + 6 min of exercise + 2 min of warm-down). During all conditions, the rate of perceived exertion and heart rate variability were monitored to further understanding of the moderating influence of audiovisual stimuli on perceptual and psychophysiological responses, respectively. The results of the present study indicate that PS ameliorated fatigue-related symptoms and reduced the physiological stress imposed by the exercise bout. Conversely, US increased the global activity of the autonomic nervous system and increased exertional responses to a greater degree when compared to PS. Accordingly, audiovisual stimuli appear to induce a psychophysiological response in which individuals visualise themselves within the story presented in the video. In such instances, individuals appear to copy the behaviour observed in the videos as if the situation was real. This mirroring mechanism has the potential to up-/down-regulate the cardiac work as if in fact the exercise intensities were different in each condition.

  8. Effects of testosterone on attention and memory for emotional stimuli in male rhesus monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Hanna M; Kurdziel, Laura B; Meyer, Jerrold S; Lacreuse, Agnès

    2012-03-01

    Increasing evidence in humans and other animals suggests that testosterone (T) plays an important role in modulating emotion. We previously reported that T treatment in rhesus monkeys undergoing chemically induced hypogonadism results in increased watching time of videos depicting fights between unfamiliar conspecifics (Lacreuse et al., 2010). In the current study, we aimed to further investigate the effect of T manipulations on attention and memory for emotional stimuli in male rhesus monkeys. Six males (7 years old) were administered Depot Lupron to suppress endogenous T levels and treated with either testosterone enanthate (TE, 5 mg/kg) or oil, before crossing over to the alternate treatment. Animals were tested for 16 weeks on two computerized touchscreen tasks with both social and nonsocial emotional and neutral stimuli. The Dot-Probe task was used to measure attention, and the Delayed-Non-Matching-to-Sample task with a 1s delay (DNMS) was used to measure recognition memory for these stimuli. Performance on the two tasks was examined during each of four month-long phases: Baseline, Lupron alone, Lupron+TE and Lupron+oil. It was predicted that T administration would lead to increased attention to negative social stimuli (i.e., negative facial expressions of unfamiliar conspecifics) and would improve memory for such stimuli. We found no evidence to support these predictions. In the Dot-Probe task, an attentional bias towards negative social stimuli was observed at baseline, but T treatment did not enhance this bias. Instead, monkeys had faster response times when treated with T compared to oil, independently of the emotional valence or social relevance of stimuli, perhaps reflecting an enhancing effect of T on reward sensitivity or general arousal. In the DNMS, animals had better memory for nonsocial compared to social stimuli and showed the poorest performance in the recognition of positive facial expressions. However, T did not affect performance on the task

  9. Multi-Functional Stimuli-Responsive Materials

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Supramolecular polymers based on non-covalent interactions can display a wide array of stimuli-responsive attributes. They can be tailored to change shape, actuate...

  10. Newborns' Discrimination of Chromatic from Achromatic Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Russell J.; And Others

    1986-01-01

    Two experiments assessed the extent of newborns' ability to discriminate color. Results imply that newborns have some, albeit limited, capacity to discriminate chromatic from achromatic stimuli, and hence, are at least dichromats. (Author/DR)

  11. Generalized Habituation of Concept Stimuli in Toddlers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faulkender, Patricia J.; And Others

    1974-01-01

    An evaluation of selective generalization of habituation on the basis of meaningful categories of stimuli. Also explored are the sex differences in conceptual generalization of habituation. Subjects were 36 toddlers with a mean age of 40 months. (SDH)

  12. The mere exposure effect with scene stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    八木 , 善彦

    2016-01-01

     The mere exposure effect refers to the phenomenon where previous exposures to stimuli increasesubsequent affective preference for those stimuli. It has been indicated that with specific stimulus-category(i.e., paintings, matrices, and photographs of scene), repeated exposure has little or oppositeeffect on affective ratings. In this study, two experiments were conducted in order to explore theeffect of stimulus-category on the mere exposure effects. Photographs of young woman’s(Experiment1)a...

  13. Binocular Combination of Second-Order Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jiawei; Liu, Rong; Zhou, Yifeng; Hess, Robert F.

    2014-01-01

    Phase information is a fundamental aspect of visual stimuli. However, the nature of the binocular combination of stimuli defined by modulations in contrast, so-called second-order stimuli, is presently not clear. To address this issue, we measured binocular combination for first- (luminance modulated) and second-order (contrast modulated) stimuli using a binocular phase combination paradigm in seven normal adults. We found that the binocular perceived phase of second-order gratings depends on the interocular signal ratio as has been previously shown for their first order counterparts; the interocular signal ratios when the two eyes were balanced was close to 1 in both first- and second-order phase combinations. However, second-order combination is more linear than previously found for first-order combination. Furthermore, binocular combination of second-order stimuli was similar regardless of whether the carriers in the two eyes were correlated, anti-correlated, or uncorrelated. This suggests that, in normal adults, the binocular phase combination of second-order stimuli occurs after the monocular extracting of the second-order modulations. The sensory balance associated with this second-order combination can be obtained from binocular phase combination measurements. PMID:24404180

  14. Generalization of the disruptive effects of alternative stimuli when combined with target stimuli in extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podlesnik, Christopher A; Miranda-Dukoski, Ludmila; Jonas Chan, C K; Bland, Vikki J; Bai, John Y H

    2017-09-01

    Differential-reinforcement treatments reduce target problem behavior in the short term but at the expense of making it more persistent long term. Basic and translational research based on behavioral momentum theory suggests that combining features of stimuli governing an alternative response with the stimuli governing target responding could make target responding less persistent. However, changes to the alternative stimulus context when combining alternative and target stimuli could diminish the effectiveness of the alternative stimulus in reducing target responding. In an animal model with pigeons, the present study reinforced responding in the presence of target and alternative stimuli. When combining the alternative and target stimuli during extinction, we altered the alternative stimulus through changes in line orientation. We found that (1) combining alternative and target stimuli in extinction more effectively decreased target responding than presenting the target stimulus on its own; (2) combining these stimuli was more effective in decreasing target responding trained with lower reinforcement rates; and (3) changing the alternative stimulus reduced its effectiveness when it was combined with the target stimulus. Therefore, changing alternative stimuli (e.g., therapist, clinical setting) during behavioral treatments that combine alternative and target stimuli could reduce the effectiveness of those treatments in disrupting problem behavior. © 2017 Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  15. Neural Conflict–Control Mechanisms Improve Memory for Target Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krebs, Ruth M.; Boehler, Carsten N.; De Belder, Maya; Egner, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    According to conflict-monitoring models, conflict serves as an internal signal for reinforcing top-down attention to task-relevant information. While evidence based on measures of ongoing task performance supports this idea, implications for long-term consequences, that is, memory, have not been tested yet. Here, we evaluated the prediction that conflict-triggered attentional enhancement of target-stimulus processing should be associated with superior subsequent memory for those stimuli. By combining functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) with a novel variant of a face-word Stroop task that employed trial-unique face stimuli as targets, we were able to assess subsequent (incidental) memory for target faces as a function of whether a given face had previously been accompanied by congruent, neutral, or incongruent (conflicting) distracters. In line with our predictions, incongruent distracters not only induced behavioral conflict, but also gave rise to enhanced memory for target faces. Moreover, conflict-triggered neural activity in prefrontal and parietal regions was predictive of subsequent retrieval success, and displayed conflict-enhanced functional coupling with medial-temporal lobe regions. These data provide support for the proposal that conflict evokes enhanced top-down attention to task-relevant stimuli, thereby promoting their encoding into long-term memory. Our findings thus delineate the neural mechanisms of a novel link between cognitive control and memory. PMID:24108799

  16. Neural conflict-control mechanisms improve memory for target stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krebs, Ruth M; Boehler, Carsten N; De Belder, Maya; Egner, Tobias

    2015-03-01

    According to conflict-monitoring models, conflict serves as an internal signal for reinforcing top-down attention to task-relevant information. While evidence based on measures of ongoing task performance supports this idea, implications for long-term consequences, that is, memory, have not been tested yet. Here, we evaluated the prediction that conflict-triggered attentional enhancement of target-stimulus processing should be associated with superior subsequent memory for those stimuli. By combining functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) with a novel variant of a face-word Stroop task that employed trial-unique face stimuli as targets, we were able to assess subsequent (incidental) memory for target faces as a function of whether a given face had previously been accompanied by congruent, neutral, or incongruent (conflicting) distracters. In line with our predictions, incongruent distracters not only induced behavioral conflict, but also gave rise to enhanced memory for target faces. Moreover, conflict-triggered neural activity in prefrontal and parietal regions was predictive of subsequent retrieval success, and displayed conflict-enhanced functional coupling with medial-temporal lobe regions. These data provide support for the proposal that conflict evokes enhanced top-down attention to task-relevant stimuli, thereby promoting their encoding into long-term memory. Our findings thus delineate the neural mechanisms of a novel link between cognitive control and memory. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Recall and recognition hypermnesia for Socratic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazén, Miguel; Solís-Macías, Víctor M

    2016-01-01

    In two experiments, we investigate hypermnesia, net memory improvements with repeated testing of the same material after a single study trial. In the first experiment, we found hypermnesia across three trials for the recall of word solutions to Socratic stimuli (dictionary-like definitions of concepts) replicating Erdelyi, Buschke, and Finkelstein and, for the first time using these materials, for their recognition. In the second experiment, we had two "yes/no" recognition groups, a Socratic stimuli group presented with concrete and abstract verbal materials and a word-only control group. Using signal detection measures, we found hypermnesia for concrete Socratic stimuli-and stable performance for abstract stimuli across three recognition tests. The control group showed memory decrements across tests. We interpret these findings with the alternative retrieval pathways (ARP) hypothesis, contrasting it with alternative theories of hypermnesia, such as depth of processing, generation and retrieve-recognise. We conclude that recognition hypermnesia for concrete Socratic stimuli is a reliable phenomenon, which we found in two experiments involving both forced-choice and yes/no recognition procedures.

  18. Lingering representations of stimuli influence recall organization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Stephanie C.Y.; Applegate, Marissa C.; Morton, Neal W; Polyn, Sean M.; Norman, Kenneth A.

    2017-01-01

    Several prominent theories posit that information about recent experiences lingers in the brain and organizes memories for current experiences, by forming a temporal context that is linked to those memories at encoding. According to these theories, if the thoughts preceding an experience X resemble the thoughts preceding an experience Y, then X and Y should show an elevated probability of being recalled together. We tested this prediction by using multi-voxel pattern analysis (MVPA) of fMRI data to measure neural evidence for lingering processing of preceding stimuli. As predicted, memories encoded with similar lingering thoughts about the category of preceding stimuli were more likely to be recalled together. Our results demonstrate that the “fading embers” of previous stimuli help to organize recall, confirming a key prediction of computational models of episodic memory. PMID:28132858

  19. Lingering representations of stimuli influence recall organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Stephanie C Y; Applegate, Marissa C; Morton, Neal W; Polyn, Sean M; Norman, Kenneth A

    2017-03-01

    Several prominent theories posit that information about recent experiences lingers in the brain and organizes memories for current experiences, by forming a temporal context that is linked to those memories at encoding. According to these theories, if the thoughts preceding an experience X resemble the thoughts preceding an experience Y, then X and Y should show an elevated probability of being recalled together. We tested this prediction by using multi-voxel pattern analysis (MVPA) of fMRI data to measure neural evidence for lingering processing of preceding stimuli. As predicted, memories encoded with similar lingering thoughts about the category of preceding stimuli were more likely to be recalled together. Our results demonstrate that the "fading embers" of previous stimuli help to organize recall, confirming a key prediction of computational models of episodic memory. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. VEP Responses to Op-Art Stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise O'Hare

    Full Text Available Several types of striped patterns have been reported to cause adverse sensations described as visual discomfort. Previous research using op-art-based stimuli has demonstrated that spurious eye movement signals can cause the experience of illusory motion, or shimmering effects, which might be perceived as uncomfortable. Whilst the shimmering effects are one cause of discomfort, another possible contributor to discomfort is excessive neural responses: As striped patterns do not have the statistical redundancy typical of natural images, they are perhaps unable to be encoded efficiently. If this is the case, then this should be seen in the amplitude of the EEG response. This study found that stimuli that were judged to be most comfortable were also those with the lowest EEG amplitude. This provides some support for the idea that excessive neural responses might also contribute to discomfort judgements in normal populations, in stimuli controlled for perceived contrast.

  1. VEP Responses to Op-Art Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Hare, Louise; Clarke, Alasdair D F; Pollux, Petra M J

    2015-01-01

    Several types of striped patterns have been reported to cause adverse sensations described as visual discomfort. Previous research using op-art-based stimuli has demonstrated that spurious eye movement signals can cause the experience of illusory motion, or shimmering effects, which might be perceived as uncomfortable. Whilst the shimmering effects are one cause of discomfort, another possible contributor to discomfort is excessive neural responses: As striped patterns do not have the statistical redundancy typical of natural images, they are perhaps unable to be encoded efficiently. If this is the case, then this should be seen in the amplitude of the EEG response. This study found that stimuli that were judged to be most comfortable were also those with the lowest EEG amplitude. This provides some support for the idea that excessive neural responses might also contribute to discomfort judgements in normal populations, in stimuli controlled for perceived contrast.

  2. Effect of Cissus quadrangularis on gastric mucosal defensive factors in experimentally induced gastric ulcer-a comparative study with sucralfate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jainu, Mallika; Devi, C S Shyamala

    2004-01-01

    Cissus quadrangularis is an indigenous plant commonly mentioned in Ayurveda for treatment of gastric ulcers. The ulcer-protective effect of a methanolic extract of C. quadrangularis (CQE) was comparable to that of the reference drug sucralfate. Further, gastric juice and mucosal studies showed that CQE at a dose of 500 mg/kg given for 10 days significantly increased the mucosal defensive factors like mucin secretion, mucosal cell proliferation, glycoproteins, and life span of cells. The present investigation suggests that CQE not only strengthens mucosal resistance against ulcerogens but also promotes healing by inducing cellular proliferation. Thus, CQE has potential usefulness for treatment of peptic ulcer disease.

  3. Stimuli responsive nanomaterials for controlled release applications

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Song

    2012-01-01

    The controlled release of therapeutics has been one of the major challenges for scientists and engineers during the past three decades. Coupled with excellent biocompatibility profiles, various nanomaterials have showed great promise for biomedical applications. Stimuli-responsive nanomaterials guarantee the controlled release of cargo to a given location, at a specific time, and with an accurate amount. In this review, we have combined the major stimuli that are currently used to achieve the ultimate goal of controlled and targeted release by "smart" nanomaterials. The most heavily explored strategies include (1) pH, (2) enzymes, (3) redox, (4) magnetic, and (5) light-triggered release.

  4. Stimuli-responsive liquid crystalline materials

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Debije, M.G.; Schenning, A.P.H.J.; Hashmi, Saleem

    2016-01-01

    Stimuli-responsive materials which respond to triggers from the environment by changing their properties are one of the focal points in materials science. For precise functional properties, well-defined hierarchically ordered supramolecular materials are crucial. The self-assembly of liquid crystals

  5. El coactivador de receptores nucleares RAC3 tiene un rol protector de la Apoptosis inducida por distintos estímulos RAC3 nuclear receptor co-activator has a protective role in the apoptosis induced by different stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georgina P. Coló

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available RAC3 pertenece a la familia de coactivadores de receptores nucleares p160, y se encuentra sobreexpresado en varios tumores. Demostramos previamente que RAC3 es coactivador del factor de transcripción anti-apoptótico NF-kapa;B. En este trabajo investigamos su rol en la apoptosis inducida por H2O2 en una línea celular no tumoral derivada de riñón embrionario humano (HEK293, y por el ligando inductor de apoptosis relacionado a TNF (TRAIL en una línea de leucemia mieloide crónica humana (K562, naturalmente resistente a la muerte por este estímulo. Observamos que las células tumorales K562 poseen niveles altos de RAC3 comparados con las células no tumorales HEK293. La sobreexpresión normal de coactivador o por transfección, inhibe la apoptosis mediante una disminución de la activación de caspasas, translocación del factor inductor de apoptosis (AIF al núcleo, aumento de la actividad de NF-kapa;B y las quinasas AKT y p38 y disminución de la quinasa ERK. Lo opuesto fue observado por disminución de RAC3 mediante la técnica de ARN interferente (RNAi en K562, aumentando así la apoptosis inducida por TRAIL. Estas evidencias sugieren que una sobreexpresión de RAC3 contribuye al desarrollo de tumores, participando en las cascadas que controlan la muerte celular por mecanismos no estrictamente dependientes de hormonas esteroideas y/o de acetilación, constituyendo esto un posible blanco de ataque para el tratamiento de tumores.RAC3 belongs to the family of p160 nuclear receptors coactivators and it is over-expressed in several tumors. We have previously shown that RAC3 is a NF-kappa;B coactivator. In this paper, we investigated the role of RAC3 in cell-sensitivity to apoptosis, using H2O2 in the human embryonic kidney cell line (HEK293, and tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis inducing ligand (TRAIL in a human chronic myeloid leukemia cell line (K562 naturally resistant to TRAIL. We observed that the tumoral K562 cells have high levels

  6. Blind Braille readers mislocate tactile stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterr, Annette; Green, Lisa; Elbert, Thomas

    2003-05-01

    In a previous experiment, we observed that blind Braille readers produce errors when asked to identify on which finger of one hand a light tactile stimulus had occurred. With the present study, we aimed to specify the characteristics of this perceptual error in blind and sighted participants. The experiment confirmed that blind Braille readers mislocalised tactile stimuli more often than sighted controls, and that the localisation errors occurred significantly more often at the right reading hand than at the non-reading hand. Most importantly, we discovered that the reading fingers showed the smallest error frequency, but the highest rate of stimulus attribution. The dissociation of perceiving and locating tactile stimuli in the blind suggests altered tactile information processing. Neuroplasticity, changes in tactile attention mechanisms as well as the idea that blind persons may employ different strategies for tactile exploration and object localisation are discussed as possible explanations for the results obtained.

  7. Preparation of stimuli for timbre perception studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labuschagne, Ilse B; Hanekom, Johan J

    2013-09-01

    Stimuli used in timbre perception studies must be controlled carefully in order to yield meaningful results. During psychoacoustic testing of individual timbre properties, (1) it must be ensured that timbre properties do not co-vary, as timbre properties are often not independent from one another, and (2) the potential influence of loudness, pitch, and perceived duration must be eliminated. A mathematical additive synthesis method is proposed which allows complete control over two spectral parameters, the spectral centroid (corresponding to brightness) and irregularity, and two temporal parameters, log rise-time (LRT) and a parameter characterizing the sustain/decay segment, while controlling for covariation in the spectral centroid and irregularity. Thirteen musical instrument sounds were synthesized. Perceptual data from six listeners indicate that variation in the four timbre properties mainly influences loudness and that perceived duration and pitch are not influenced significantly for the stimuli of longer duration (2 s) used here. Trends across instruments were found to be similar.

  8. Multiaccommodative stimuli in VR systems: problems & solutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marran, L; Schor, C

    1997-09-01

    Virtual reality environments can introduce multiple and sometimes conflicting accommodative stimuli. For instance, with the high-powered lenses commonly used in head-mounted displays, small discrepancies in screen lens placement, caused by manufacturer error or user adjustment focus error, can change the focal depths of the image by a couple of diopters. This can introduce a binocular accommodative stimulus or, if the displacement between the two screens is unequal, an unequal (anisometropic) accommodative stimulus for the two eyes. Systems that allow simultaneous viewing of virtual and real images can also introduce a conflict in accommodative stimuli: When real and virtual images are at different focal planes, both cannot be in focus at the same time, though they may appear to be in similar locations in space. In this paper four unique designs are described that minimize the range of accommodative stimuli and maximize the visual system's ability to cope efficiently with the focus conflicts that remain: pinhole optics, monocular lens addition combined with aniso-accommodation, chromatic bifocal, and bifocal lens system. The advantages and disadvantages of each design are described and recommendation for design choice is given after consideration of the end use of the virtual reality system (e.g., low or high end, entertainment, technical, or medical use). The appropriate design modifications should allow greater user comfort and better performance.

  9. Anagrus breviphragma Soyka Short Distance Search Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabetta Chiappini

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Anagrus breviphragma Soyka (Hymenoptera: Mymaridae successfully parasitises eggs of Cicadella viridis (L. (Homoptera: Cicadellidae, embedded in vegetal tissues, suggesting the idea of possible chemical and physical cues, revealing the eggs presence. In this research, three treatments were considered in order to establish which types of cue are involved: eggs extracted from leaf, used as a control, eggs extracted from leaf and cleaned in water and ethanol, used to evaluate the presence of chemicals soluble in polar solvents, and eggs extracted from leaf and covered with Parafilm (M, used to avoid physical stimuli due to the bump on the leaf surface. The results show that eggs covered with Parafilm present a higher number of parasitised eggs and a lower probing starting time with respect to eggs washed with polar solvents or eggs extracted and untreated, both when the treatments were singly tested or when offered in sequence, independently of the treatment position. These results suggest that the exploited stimuli are not physical due to the bump but chemicals that can spread in the Parafilm, circulating the signal on the whole surface, and that the stimuli that elicit probing and oviposition are not subjected to learning.

  10. Dynamics of fatty acid vesicles in response to pH stimuli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ikari, Keita; Sakuma, Yuka; Jimbo, Takehiro

    2015-01-01

    We investigate the dynamics of decanoic acid/decanoate (DA) vesicles in response to pH stimuli. Two types of dynamic processes induced by the micro injection of NaOH solutions are sequentially observed: deformations and topological transitions. In the deformation stage, DA vesicles show a series...

  11. Emotional stimuli exert parallel effects on attention and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talmi, Deborah; Ziegler, Marilyne; Hawksworth, Jade; Lalani, Safina; Herman, C Peter; Moscovitch, Morris

    2013-01-01

    Because emotional and neutral stimuli typically differ on non-emotional dimensions, it has been difficult to determine conclusively which factors underlie the ability of emotional stimuli to enhance immediate long-term memory. Here we induced arousal by varying participants' goals, a method that removes many potential confounds between emotional and non-emotional items. Hungry and sated participants encoded food and clothing images under divided attention conditions. Sated participants attended to and recalled food and clothing images equivalently. Hungry participants performed worse on the concurrent tone-discrimination task when they viewed food relative to clothing images, suggesting enhanced attention to food images, and they recalled more food than clothing images. A follow-up regression analysis of the factors predicting memory for individual pictures revealed that food images had parallel effects on attention and memory in hungry participants, so that enhanced attention to food images did not predict their enhanced memory. We suggest that immediate long-term memory for food is enhanced in the hungry state because hunger leads to more distinctive processing of food images rendering them more accessible during retrieval.

  12. Healable thermoset polymer composite embedded with stimuli-responsive fibres

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guoqiang; Meng, Harper; Hu, Jinlian

    2012-01-01

    Severe wounds in biological systems such as human skin cannot heal themselves, unless they are first stitched together. Healing of macroscopic damage in thermoset polymer composites faces a similar challenge. Stimuli-responsive shape-changing polymeric fibres with outstanding mechanical properties embedded in polymers may be able to close macro-cracks automatically upon stimulation such as heating. Here, a stimuli-responsive fibre (SRF) with outstanding mechanical properties and supercontraction capability was fabricated for the purpose of healing macroscopic damage. The SRFs and thermoplastic particles (TPs) were incorporated into regular thermosetting epoxy for repeatedly healing macroscopic damages. The system works by mimicking self-healing of biological systems such as human skin, close (stitch) then heal, i.e. close the macroscopic crack through the thermal-induced supercontraction of the SRFs, and bond the closed crack through melting and diffusing of TPs at the crack interface. The healing efficiency determined using tapered double-cantilever beam specimens was 94 per cent. The self-healing process was reasonably repeatable. PMID:22896563

  13. Startle Auditory Stimuli Enhance the Performance of Fast Dynamic Contractions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez-Del-Olmo, Miguel; Río-Rodríguez, Dan; Iglesias-Soler, Eliseo; Acero, Rafael M.

    2014-01-01

    Fast reaction times and the ability to develop a high rate of force development (RFD) are crucial for sports performance. However, little is known regarding the relationship between these parameters. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of auditory stimuli of different intensities on the performance of a concentric bench-press exercise. Concentric bench-presses were performed by thirteen trained subjects in response to three different conditions: a visual stimulus (VS); a visual stimulus accompanied by a non-startle auditory stimulus (AS); and a visual stimulus accompanied by a startle auditory stimulus (SS). Peak RFD, peak velocity, onset movement, movement duration and electromyography from pectoralis and tricep muscles were recorded. The SS condition induced an increase in the RFD and peak velocity and a reduction in the movement onset and duration, in comparison with the VS and AS condition. The onset activation of the pectoralis and tricep muscles was shorter for the SS than for the VS and AS conditions. These findings point out to specific enhancement effects of loud auditory stimulation on the rate of force development. This is of relevance since startle stimuli could be used to explore neural adaptations to resistance training. PMID:24489967

  14. Startle auditory stimuli enhance the performance of fast dynamic contractions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Fernandez-Del-Olmo

    Full Text Available Fast reaction times and the ability to develop a high rate of force development (RFD are crucial for sports performance. However, little is known regarding the relationship between these parameters. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of auditory stimuli of different intensities on the performance of a concentric bench-press exercise. Concentric bench-presses were performed by thirteen trained subjects in response to three different conditions: a visual stimulus (VS; a visual stimulus accompanied by a non-startle auditory stimulus (AS; and a visual stimulus accompanied by a startle auditory stimulus (SS. Peak RFD, peak velocity, onset movement, movement duration and electromyography from pectoralis and tricep muscles were recorded. The SS condition induced an increase in the RFD and peak velocity and a reduction in the movement onset and duration, in comparison with the VS and AS condition. The onset activation of the pectoralis and tricep muscles was shorter for the SS than for the VS and AS conditions. These findings point out to specific enhancement effects of loud auditory stimulation on the rate of force development. This is of relevance since startle stimuli could be used to explore neural adaptations to resistance training.

  15. Effect of Size Change and Brightness Change of Visual Stimuli on Loudness Perception and Pitch Perception of Auditory Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Syouya Tanabe

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available People obtain a lot of information from visual and auditory sensation on daily life. Regarding the effect of visual stimuli on perception of auditory stimuli, studies of phonological perception and sound localization have been made in great numbers. This study examined the effect of visual stimuli on perception in loudness and pitch of auditory stimuli. We used the image of figures whose size or brightness was changed as visual stimuli, and the sound of pure tone whose loudness or pitch was changed as auditory stimuli. Those visual and auditory stimuli were combined independently to make four types of audio-visual multisensory stimuli for psychophysical experiments. In the experiments, participants judged change in loudness or pitch of auditory stimuli, while they judged the direction of size change or the kind of a presented figure in visual stimuli. Therefore they cannot neglect visual stimuli while they judged auditory stimuli. As a result, perception in loudness and pitch were promoted significantly around their difference limen, when the image was getting bigger or brighter, compared with the case in which the image had no changes. This indicates that perception in loudness and pitch were affected by change in size and brightness of visual stimuli.

  16. Visual Stimuli Induce Waves of Electrical Activity in Turtle Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prechtl, J. C.; Cohen, L. B.; Pesaran, B.; Mitra, P. P.; Kleinfeld, D.

    1997-07-01

    The computations involved in the processing of a visual scene invariably involve the interactions among neurons throughout all of visual cortex. One hypothesis is that the timing of neuronal activity, as well as the amplitude of activity, provides a means to encode features of objects. The experimental data from studies on cat [Gray, C. M., Konig, P., Engel, A. K. & Singer, W. (1989) Nature (London) 338, 334-337] support a view in which only synchronous (no phase lags) activity carries information about the visual scene. In contrast, theoretical studies suggest, on the one hand, the utility of multiple phases within a population of neurons as a means to encode independent visual features and, on the other hand, the likely existence of timing differences solely on the basis of network dynamics. Here we use widefield imaging in conjunction with voltage-sensitive dyes to record electrical activity from the virtually intact, unanesthetized turtle brain. Our data consist of single-trial measurements. We analyze our data in the frequency domain to isolate coherent events that lie in different frequency bands. Low frequency oscillations (scale differences in neuronal timing are present and persistent during visual processing.

  17. Emotion attribution to basic parametric static and dynamic stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visch, V.; Goudbeek, M.B.; Cohn, J.; Nijholt, A.; Pantic, P.

    2009-01-01

    The following research investigates the effect of basic visual stimuli on the attribution of basic emotions by the viewer. In an empirical study (N = 33) we used two groups of visually minimal expressive stimuli: dynamic and static. The dynamic stimuli consisted of an animated circle moving

  18. Monetary reward modulates task-irrelevant perceptual learning for invisible stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Pascucci

    Full Text Available Task Irrelevant Perceptual Learning (TIPL shows that the brain's discriminative capacity can improve also for invisible and unattended visual stimuli. It has been hypothesized that this form of "unconscious" neural plasticity is mediated by an endogenous reward mechanism triggered by the correct task performance. Although this result has challenged the mandatory role of attention in perceptual learning, no direct evidence exists of the hypothesized link between target recognition, reward and TIPL. Here, we manipulated the reward value associated with a target to demonstrate the involvement of reinforcement mechanisms in sensory plasticity for invisible inputs. Participants were trained in a central task associated with either high or low monetary incentives, provided only at the end of the experiment, while subliminal stimuli were presented peripherally. Our results showed that high incentive-value targets induced a greater degree of perceptual improvement for the subliminal stimuli, supporting the role of reinforcement mechanisms in TIPL.

  19. Monetary reward modulates task-irrelevant perceptual learning for invisible stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pascucci, David; Mastropasqua, Tommaso; Turatto, Massimo

    2015-01-01

    Task Irrelevant Perceptual Learning (TIPL) shows that the brain's discriminative capacity can improve also for invisible and unattended visual stimuli. It has been hypothesized that this form of "unconscious" neural plasticity is mediated by an endogenous reward mechanism triggered by the correct task performance. Although this result has challenged the mandatory role of attention in perceptual learning, no direct evidence exists of the hypothesized link between target recognition, reward and TIPL. Here, we manipulated the reward value associated with a target to demonstrate the involvement of reinforcement mechanisms in sensory plasticity for invisible inputs. Participants were trained in a central task associated with either high or low monetary incentives, provided only at the end of the experiment, while subliminal stimuli were presented peripherally. Our results showed that high incentive-value targets induced a greater degree of perceptual improvement for the subliminal stimuli, supporting the role of reinforcement mechanisms in TIPL.

  20. Audiovisual Capture with Ambiguous Audiovisual Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Michel Hupé

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Audiovisual capture happens when information across modalities get fused into a coherent percept. Ambiguous multi-modal stimuli have the potential to be powerful tools to observe such effects. We used such stimuli made of temporally synchronized and spatially co-localized visual flashes and auditory tones. The flashes produced bistable apparent motion and the tones produced ambiguous streaming. We measured strong interferences between perceptual decisions in each modality, a case of audiovisual capture. However, does this mean that audiovisual capture occurs before bistable decision? We argue that this is not the case, as the interference had a slow temporal dynamics and was modulated by audiovisual congruence, suggestive of high-level factors such as attention or intention. We propose a framework to integrate bistability and audiovisual capture, which distinguishes between “what” competes and “how” it competes (Hupé et al., 2008. The audiovisual interactions may be the result of contextual influences on neural representations (“what” competes, quite independent from the causal mechanisms of perceptual switches (“how” it competes. This framework predicts that audiovisual capture can bias bistability especially if modalities are congruent (Sato et al., 2007, but that is fundamentally distinct in nature from the bistable competition mechanism.

  1. Effects of emotional valence and three-dimensionality of visual stimuli on brain activation: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dores, A R; Almeida, I; Barbosa, F; Castelo-Branco, M; Monteiro, L; Reis, M; de Sousa, L; Caldas, A Castro

    2013-01-01

    Examining changes in brain activation linked with emotion-inducing stimuli is essential to the study of emotions. Due to the ecological potential of techniques such as virtual reality (VR), inspection of whether brain activation in response to emotional stimuli can be modulated by the three-dimensional (3D) properties of the images is important. The current study sought to test whether the activation of brain areas involved in the emotional processing of scenarios of different valences can be modulated by 3D. Therefore, the focus was made on the interaction effect between emotion-inducing stimuli of different emotional valences (pleasant, unpleasant and neutral valences) and visualization types (2D, 3D). However, main effects were also analyzed. The effect of emotional valence and visualization types and their interaction were analyzed through a 3 × 2 repeated measures ANOVA. Post-hoc t-tests were performed under a ROI-analysis approach. The results show increased brain activation for the 3D affective-inducing stimuli in comparison with the same stimuli in 2D scenarios, mostly in cortical and subcortical regions that are related to emotional processing, in addition to visual processing regions. This study has the potential of clarify brain mechanisms involved in the processing of emotional stimuli (scenarios' valence) and their interaction with three-dimensionality.

  2. Can persons with dementia be engaged with stimuli?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen-Mansfield, Jiska; Marx, Marcia S; Dakheel-Ali, Maha; Regier, Natalie G; Thein, Khin

    2010-04-01

    To determine which stimuli are 1) most engaging 2) most often refused by nursing home residents with dementia, and 3) most appropriate for persons who are more difficult to engage with stimuli. Participants were 193 residents of seven Maryland nursing homes. All participants had a diagnosis of dementia. Stimulus engagement was assessed by the Observational Measure of Engagement. The most engaging stimuli were one-on-one socializing with a research assistant, a real baby, personalized stimuli based on the person's self-identity, a lifelike doll, a respite video, and envelopes to stamp. Refusal of stimuli was higher among those with higher levels of cognitive function and related to the stimulus' social appropriateness. Women showed more attention and had more positive attitudes for live social stimuli, simulated social stimuli, and artistic tasks than did men. Persons with comparatively higher levels of cognitive functioning were more likely to be engaged in manipulative and work tasks, whereas those with low levels of cognitive functioning spent relatively more time responding to social stimuli. The most effective stimuli did not differ for those most likely to be engaged and those least likely to be engaged. Nursing homes should consider both having engagement stimuli readily available to residents with dementia, and implementing a socialization schedule so that residents receive one-on-one interaction. Understanding the relationship among type of stimulus, cognitive function, and acceptance, attention, and attitude toward the stimuli can enable caregivers to maximize the desired benefit for persons with dementia.

  3. Beyond arousal and valence: the importance of the biological versus social relevance of emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakaki, Michiko; Niki, Kazuhisa; Mather, Mara

    2012-03-01

    The present study addressed the hypothesis that emotional stimuli relevant to survival or reproduction (biologically emotional stimuli) automatically affect cognitive processing (e.g., attention, memory), while those relevant to social life (socially emotional stimuli) require elaborative processing to modulate attention and memory. Results of our behavioral studies showed that (1) biologically emotional images hold attention more strongly than do socially emotional images, (2) memory for biologically emotional images was enhanced even with limited cognitive resources, but (3) memory for socially emotional images was enhanced only when people had sufficient cognitive resources at encoding. Neither images' subjective arousal nor their valence modulated these patterns. A subsequent functional magnetic resonance imaging study revealed that biologically emotional images induced stronger activity in the visual cortex and greater functional connectivity between the amygdala and visual cortex than did socially emotional images. These results suggest that the interconnection between the amygdala and visual cortex supports enhanced attention allocation to biological stimuli. In contrast, socially emotional images evoked greater activity in the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) and yielded stronger functional connectivity between the amygdala and MPFC than did biological images. Thus, it appears that emotional processing of social stimuli involves elaborative processing requiring frontal lobe activity.

  4. [Effects of visual optical stimuli for accommodation-convergence system on asthenopia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwasaki, Tsuneto; Tawara, Akihiko; Miyake, Nobuyuki

    2006-01-01

    We investigated the effect on eyestrain of optical stimuli that we designed for accommodation and convergence systems. Eight female students were given optical stimuli for accommodation and convergence systems for 1.5 min immediately after 20 min of a sustained task on a 3-D display. Before and after the trial, their ocular functions were measured and their symptoms were assessed. The optical stimuli were applied by moving targets of scenery images far and near around the far point position of both eyes on a horizonal place, which induced divergence in the direction of the eye position of rest. In a control group, subjects rested with closed eyes for 1.5 min instead of applying the optical stimuli. There were significant changes in the accommodative contraction time (from far to near) and the accommodative relaxation time (from near to far) and the lag of accommodation at near target, from 1.26 s to 1.62 s and from 1.49 s to 1.63 s and from 0.5 D to 0.65 D, respectively, and in the symptoms in the control group after the duration of closed-eye rest. In the stimulus group, however, the changes of those functions were smaller than in the control group. From these results, we suggest that our designed optical stimuli for accommodation and convergence systems are effective on asthenopia following accommodative dysfunction.

  5. Attribute amnesia is greatly reduced with novel stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weijia Chen

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Attribute amnesia is the counterintuitive phenomenon where observers are unable to report a salient aspect of a stimulus (e.g., its colour or its identity immediately after the stimulus was presented, despite both attending to and processing the stimulus. Almost all previous attribute amnesia studies used highly familiar stimuli. Our study investigated whether attribute amnesia would also occur for unfamiliar stimuli. We conducted four experiments using stimuli that were highly familiar (colours or repeated animal images or that were unfamiliar to the observers (unique animal images. Our results revealed that attribute amnesia was present for both sets of familiar stimuli, colour (p < .001 and repeated animals (p = .001; but was greatly attenuated, and possibly eliminated, when the stimuli were unique animals (p = .02. Our data shows that attribute amnesia is greatly reduced for novel stimuli.

  6. Perceptual load modifies processing of unattended stimuli both in the presence and absence of attended stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couperus, J W

    2010-11-26

    This study explored effects of perceptual load on stimulus processing in the presence and absence of an attended stimulus. Participants were presented with a bilateral or unilateral display and asked to perform a discrimination task at either low or high perceptual load. Electrophysiological responses to stimuli were then compared at the P100 and N100. As in previous studies, perceptual load modified processing of attended and unattended stimuli seen at occipital scalp sites. Moreover, perceptual load modulated attention effects when the attended stimulus was presented at high perceptual load for unilateral displays. However, this was not true when the attended and unattended stimulus appeared simultaneously in bilateral displays. Instead, only a main effect of perceptual load was found. Reductions in processing contralateral to the unattended stimulus at the N100 provide support for Lavie's (1995) theory of selective attention. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Stimulus induced bursts in severe postanoxic encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tjepkema-Cloostermans, Marleen C; Wijers, Elisabeth T; van Putten, Michel J A M

    2016-11-01

    To report on a distinct effect of auditory and sensory stimuli on the EEG in comatose patients with severe postanoxic encephalopathy. In two comatose patients admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) with severe postanoxic encephalopathy and burst-suppression EEG, we studied the effect of external stimuli (sound and touch) on the occurrence of bursts. In patient A bursts could be induced by either auditory or sensory stimuli. In patient B bursts could only be induced by touching different facial regions (forehead, nose and chin). When stimuli were presented with relatively long intervals, bursts persistently followed the stimuli, while stimuli with short intervals (encephalopathy can be induced by external stimuli, resulting in stimulus-dependent burst-suppression. Stimulus induced bursts should not be interpreted as prognostic favourable EEG reactivity. Copyright © 2016 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Separating discriminative and function-altering effects of verbal stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Schlinger, Henry D.

    1993-01-01

    Ever since Skinner's first discussion of rule-governed behavior, behavior analysts have continued to define rules, either explicitly or implicitly, as verbal discriminative stimuli. Consequently, it is not difficult to find, in the literature on rule-governed behavior, references to stimulus control, antecedent control, or to rules occasioning behavior. However, some verbal stimuli have effects on behavior that are not easily described as discriminative. Such stimuli don't evoke behavior as d...

  9. Multisensory stimuli improve relative localisation judgments compared to unisensory auditory or visual stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Bizley, Jennifer; Wood, Katherine; Freeman, Laura

    2018-01-01

    Observers performed a relative localisation task in which they reported whether the second of two sequentially presented signals occurred to the left or right of the first. Stimuli were detectability-matched auditory, visual, or auditory-visual signals and the goal was to compare changes in performance with eccentricity across modalities. Visual performance was superior to auditory at the midline, but inferior in the periphery, while auditory-visual performance exceeded both at all locations....

  10. Valuation of Go Stimuli or Devaluation of No-Go Stimuli? Evidence of an Increased Preference for Attended Go Stimuli Following a Go/No-Go Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Kazuya; Sato, Nobuya

    2017-01-01

    Attentional inhibition that occurs during discrimination tasks leads to the negative evaluation of distractor stimuli. This phenomenon, known as the distractor devaluation effect also occurs when go/no-go tasks require response inhibition. However, it remains unclear whether there are interactions between attention and response controls when the distractor devaluation effect occurs. The aims of this study were to investigate whether attention to stimuli in the go/no-go task plays a facilitative role in distractor devaluation through response inhibition, and to clarify whether this effect reflects a decreased preference for no-go stimuli. Participants evaluated the preference for pictures before and after a go/no-go task. In Experiments 1 and 2, they made a go or no-go response depending on the category of pictures displayed (gummy candies or rice crackers), whereas in Experiment 3 they did on the basis digit category, even or odd numbers, superimposed on such pictures. Experiments 1 and 2 demonstrated that the pictures presented as no-go stimuli in the preceding go/no-go task were evaluated as less positive than the pictures presented as go stimuli. This devaluation effect reflected an increased preference for the go stimuli but not a decreased preference for the no-go stimuli. Experiment 3 indicated that response inhibition did not affect the preference for the pictures that had not received attention in a preceding go/no-go task. These results suggest that although attention plays an important role in differential ratings for go and no-go stimuli, such differences, in fact, reflect the valuation of go stimuli.

  11. Developing Affective Mental Imagery Stimuli with Multidimensional Scaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J. Facciani

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The goal of this paper is to provide an example of how multidimensional scaling (MDS can be used for stimuli development. The study described in this paper illustrates this process by developing affective mental imagery stimuli using the circumplex model of affect as a guide. The circumplex model of affect argues that all emotions can be described in terms of two underlying primary dimensions: valence and arousal (Russel, 1980. We used MDS to determine if affective mental imagery stimuli obtained from verbal prompts could be separated by arousal and valence to create four distinct categories (high –positive, low-positive, high-negative, and low-negative as seen in other stimuli. 60 students from the University of South Carolina participated in the first experiment to evaluate three sets of stimuli. After being analyzed using MDS, selected stimuli were then assessed again in a second experiment to validate their robust valence and arousal distinctions. The second experiment was conducted with 34 subjects to validate 40 of the best stimuli from experiment 1. It was found that mental imagery stimuli can produce a reliable affective response for the dimensions of valence and arousal and that MDS can be an effective tool for stimuli development.

  12. A microfluidic device to study neuronal and motor responses to acute chemical stimuli in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candelier, Raphaël; Murmu, Meena Sriti; Romano, Sebastián Alejo; Jouary, Adrien; Debrégeas, Georges; Sumbre, Germán

    2015-07-21

    Zebrafish larva is a unique model for whole-brain functional imaging and to study sensory-motor integration in the vertebrate brain. To take full advantage of this system, one needs to design sensory environments that can mimic the complex spatiotemporal stimulus patterns experienced by the animal in natural conditions. We report on a novel open-ended microfluidic device that delivers pulses of chemical stimuli to agarose-restrained larvae with near-millisecond switching rate and unprecedented spatial and concentration accuracy and reproducibility. In combination with two-photon calcium imaging and recordings of tail movements, we found that stimuli of opposite hedonic values induced different circuit activity patterns. Moreover, by precisely controlling the duration of the stimulus (50-500 ms), we found that the probability of generating a gustatory-induced behavior is encoded by the number of neurons activated. This device may open new ways to dissect the neural-circuit principles underlying chemosensory perception.

  13. Stimuli-responsive cement-reinforced rubber.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musso, Simone; Robisson, Agathe; Maheshwar, Sudeep; Ulm, Franz-Josef

    2014-05-14

    In this work, we report the successful development of a cement-rubber reactive composite with reversible mechanical properties. Initially, the composite behaves like rubber containing inert filler, but when exposed to water, it increases in volume and reaches a stiffness that is intermediate between that of hydrogenated nitrile butadiene rubber (HNBR) and hydrated cement, while maintaining a relatively large ductility characteristic of rubber. After drying, the modulus increases even further up to 400 MPa. Wet/drying cycles prove that the elastic modulus can reversibly change between 150 and 400 MPa. Utilizing attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy), we demonstrate that the high pH produced by the hydration of cement triggers the hydrolysis of the rubber nitrile groups into carboxylate anions. Thus, the salt bridges, generated between the carboxylate anions of the elastomer and the cations of the filler, are responsible for the reversible variations in volume and elastic modulus of the composite as a consequence of environmental moisture exposure. These results reveal that cement nanoparticles can successfully be used to accomplish a twofold task: (a) achieve an original postpolymerization modification that allows one to work with carboxylate HNBR (HXNBR) not obtained by direct copolymerization of carboxylate monomers with butadiene, and (b) synthesize a stimuli-responsive polymeric composite. This new type of material, having an ideal behavior for sealing application, could be used as an alternative to cement for oil field zonal isolation applications.

  14. Thoughts of death modulate psychophysical and cortical responses to threatening stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elia Valentini

    Full Text Available Existential social psychology studies show that awareness of one's eventual death profoundly influences human cognition and behaviour by inducing defensive reactions against end-of-life related anxiety. Much less is known about the impact of reminders of mortality on brain activity. Therefore we explored whether reminders of mortality influence subjective ratings of intensity and threat of auditory and painful thermal stimuli and the associated electroencephalographic activity. Moreover, we explored whether personality and demographics modulate psychophysical and neural changes related to mortality salience (MS. Following MS induction, a specific increase in ratings of intensity and threat was found for both nociceptive and auditory stimuli. While MS did not have any specific effect on nociceptive and auditory evoked potentials, larger amplitude of theta oscillatory activity related to thermal nociceptive activity was found after thoughts of death were induced. MS thus exerted a top-down modulation on theta electroencephalographic oscillatory amplitude, specifically for brain activity triggered by painful thermal stimuli. This effect was higher in participants reporting higher threat perception, suggesting that inducing a death-related mind-set may have an influence on body-defence related somatosensory representations.

  15. Enhanced Recognition Memory in Grapheme-Colour Synaesthesia for Different Categories of Visual Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie eWard

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Memory has been shown to be enhanced in grapheme-colour synaesthesia, and this enhancement extends to certain visual stimuli (that don’t induce synaesthesia as well as stimuli comprised of graphemes (which do. Previous studies have used a variety of testing procedures to assess memory in synaesthesia (e.g. free recall, recognition, associative learning making it hard to know the extent to which memory benefits are attributable to the stimulus properties themselves, the testing method, participant strategies, or some combination of these factors. In the first experiment, we use the same testing procedure (recognition memory for a variety of stimuli (written words, nonwords, scenes, and fractals and also check which memorisation strategies were used. We demonstrate that grapheme-colour synaesthetes show enhanced memory across all these stimuli, but this is not found for a non-visual type of synaesthesia (lexical-gustatory. In the second experiment, the memory advantage for scenes is explored further by manipulating the properties of the old and new images (changing colour, orientation, or object presence. Again, grapheme-colour synaesthetes show a memory advantage for scenes across all manipulations. Although recognition memory is generally enhanced in this study, the largest effects were found for abstract visual images (fractals and scenes for which colour can be used to discriminate old/new status.

  16. Premenstrual dysphoric disorder and prefrontal reactivity during anticipation of emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gingnell, Malin; Bannbers, Elin; Wikström, Johan; Fredrikson, Mats; Sundström-Poromaa, Inger

    2013-11-01

    Premenstrual disorder (PMDD) affects around 5% of women in childbearing ages. An increased sensitivity in emotion processing areas of the brain to variations in ovarian steroid levels has been suggested as part of the pathophysiology in PMDD, but prior neuroimaging studies of emotion processing are yet inconclusive. Previous behavioral studies of women with PMDD have, however, reported enhanced luteal phase startle responsivity during emotional anticipation. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate central neural circuitry activity during anticipation of, and exposure to, emotional stimuli across the menstrual cycle in women with and without PMDD. As compared to healthy controls, women with PMDD displayed significantly enhanced reactivity in the prefrontal cortex during anticipation of, but not exposure to, negative emotional stimuli during the luteal phase. In PMDD patients, BOLD reactivity during anticipation or viewing of negative emotional stimuli was not dependent on absolute levels of estradiol or progesterone. However, progesterone levels were positively correlated with emotion-induced reactivity in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to positive emotional stimuli. These findings suggest that cortical emotional circuitry reactivity during anticipation is altered in PMDD during the luteal phase, which might be part of the pathophysiology behind the emotional symptoms or lack of emotional control reported by women with PMDD. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  17. Enhanced recognition memory in grapheme-color synaesthesia for different categories of visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Jamie; Hovard, Peter; Jones, Alicia; Rothen, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Memory has been shown to be enhanced in grapheme-color synaesthesia, and this enhancement extends to certain visual stimuli (that don't induce synaesthesia) as well as stimuli comprised of graphemes (which do). Previous studies have used a variety of testing procedures to assess memory in synaesthesia (e.g., free recall, recognition, associative learning) making it hard to know the extent to which memory benefits are attributable to the stimulus properties themselves, the testing method, participant strategies, or some combination of these factors. In the first experiment, we use the same testing procedure (recognition memory) for a variety of stimuli (written words, non-words, scenes, and fractals) and also check which memorization strategies were used. We demonstrate that grapheme-color synaesthetes show enhanced memory across all these stimuli, but this is not found for a non-visual type of synaesthesia (lexical-gustatory). In the second experiment, the memory advantage for scenes is explored further by manipulating the properties of the old and new images (changing color, orientation, or object presence). Again, grapheme-color synaesthetes show a memory advantage for scenes across all manipulations. Although recognition memory is generally enhanced in this study, the largest effects were found for abstract visual images (fractals) and scenes for which color can be used to discriminate old/new status.

  18. Heightened attentional capture by visual food stimuli in Anorexia Nervosa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neimeijer, Renate A.M.; Roefs, Anne; de Jong, Peter J.

    The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that anorexia nervosa (AN) patients are relatively insensitive to the attentional capture of visual food stimuli. Attentional avoidance of food might help AN patients to prevent more elaborate processing of food stimuli and the subsequent

  19. Product perception from sensory stimuli: the case of vacuum cleaner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida e Silva, Caio Márcio; Okimoto, Maria Lúciar R L; Tanure, Raffaela Leane Zenni

    2012-01-01

    This paper discusses the importance of consideration of different sensory stimuli in the perception of the product. So we conducted an experiment that examined whether there is a difference between the perception of sensory stimuli from artificially isolated. The result is an analysis of the different sensory modalities, relating them to product an between them.

  20. Roll motion stimuli : sensory conflict, perceptual weighting and motion sickness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Graaf, B. de; Bles, W.; Bos, J.E.

    1998-01-01

    In an experiment with seventeen subjects interactions of visual roll motion stimuli and vestibular body tilt stimuli were examined in determining the subjective vertical. Interindi-vidual differences in weighting the visual information were observed, but in general visual and vestibular responses

  1. Exploring Visuomotor Priming Following Biological and Non-Biological Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gowen, E.; Bradshaw, C.; Galpin, A.; Lawrence, A.; Poliakoff, E.

    2010-01-01

    Observation of human actions influences the observer's own motor system, termed visuomotor priming, and is believed to be caused by automatic activation of mirror neurons. Evidence suggests that priming effects are larger for biological (human) as opposed to non-biological (object) stimuli and enhanced when viewing stimuli in mirror compared to…

  2. Processing of natural temporal stimuli by macaque retinal ganglion cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hateren, J.H. van; Rüttiger, L.; Lee, B.B.

    2002-01-01

    This study quantifies the performance of primate retinal ganglion cells in response to natural stimuli. Stimuli were confined to the temporal and chromatic domains and were derived from two contrasting environments, one typically northern European and the other a flower show. The performance of the

  3. Haptic and Audio-visual Stimuli: Enhancing Experiences and Interaction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijholt, Antinus; Dijk, Esko O.; Lemmens, Paul M.C.; Luitjens, S.B.

    2010-01-01

    The intention of the symposium on Haptic and Audio-visual stimuli at the EuroHaptics 2010 conference is to deepen the understanding of the effect of combined Haptic and Audio-visual stimuli. The knowledge gained will be used to enhance experiences and interactions in daily life. To this end, a

  4. Stimuli-Regulated Smart Polymeric Systems for Gene Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ansuja Pulickal Mathew

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The physiological condition of the human body is a composite of different environments, each with its own parameters that may differ under normal, as well as diseased conditions. These environmental conditions include factors, such as pH, temperature and enzymes that are specific to a type of cell, tissue or organ or a pathological state, such as inflammation, cancer or infection. These conditions can act as specific triggers or stimuli for the efficient release of therapeutics at their destination by overcoming many physiological and biological barriers. The efficacy of conventional treatment modalities can be enhanced, side effects decreased and patient compliance improved by using stimuli-responsive material that respond to these triggers at the target site. These stimuli or triggers can be physical, chemical or biological and can be internal or external in nature. Many smart/intelligent stimuli-responsive therapeutic gene carriers have been developed that can respond to either internal stimuli, which may be normally present, overexpressed or present in decreased levels, owing to a disease, or to stimuli that are applied externally, such as magnetic fields. This review focuses on the effects of various internal stimuli, such as temperature, pH, redox potential, enzymes, osmotic activity and other biomolecules that are present in the body, on modulating gene expression by using stimuli-regulated smart polymeric carriers.

  5. Gender differences in identifying emotions from auditory and visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waaramaa, Teija

    2017-12-01

    The present study focused on gender differences in emotion identification from auditory and visual stimuli produced by two male and two female actors. Differences in emotion identification from nonsense samples, language samples and prolonged vowels were investigated. It was also studied whether auditory stimuli can convey the emotional content of speech without visual stimuli, and whether visual stimuli can convey the emotional content of speech without auditory stimuli. The aim was to get a better knowledge of vocal attributes and a more holistic understanding of the nonverbal communication of emotion. Females tended to be more accurate in emotion identification than males. Voice quality parameters played a role in emotion identification in both genders. The emotional content of the samples was best conveyed by nonsense sentences, better than by prolonged vowels or shared native language of the speakers and participants. Thus, vocal non-verbal communication tends to affect the interpretation of emotion even in the absence of language. The emotional stimuli were better recognized from visual stimuli than auditory stimuli by both genders. Visual information about speech may not be connected to the language; instead, it may be based on the human ability to understand the kinetic movements in speech production more readily than the characteristics of the acoustic cues.

  6. Attentional Capture by Emotional Stimuli Is Modulated by Semantic Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yang-Ming; Baddeley, Alan; Young, Andrew W.

    2008-01-01

    The attentional blink paradigm was used to examine whether emotional stimuli always capture attention. The processing requirement for emotional stimuli in a rapid sequential visual presentation stream was manipulated to investigate the circumstances under which emotional distractors capture attention, as reflected in an enhanced attentional blink…

  7. Emotional attention for erotic stimuli: Cognitive and brain mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sennwald, Vanessa; Pool, Eva; Brosch, Tobias; Delplanque, Sylvain; Bianchi-Demicheli, Francesco; Sander, David

    2016-06-01

    It has long been posited that among emotional stimuli, only negative threatening information modulates early shifts of attention. However, in the last few decades there has been an increase in research showing that attention is also involuntarily oriented toward positive rewarding stimuli such as babies, food, and erotic information. Because reproduction-related stimuli have some of the largest effects among positive stimuli on emotional attention, the present work reviews recent literature and proposes that the cognitive and cerebral mechanisms underlying the involuntarily attentional orientation toward threat-related information are also sensitive to erotic information. More specifically, the recent research suggests that both types of information involuntarily orient attention due to their concern relevance and that the amygdala plays an important role in detecting concern-relevant stimuli, thereby enhancing perceptual processing and influencing emotional attentional processes. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Stimuli-Responsive Liposomes for Controlled Drug Delivery

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Wengang

    2014-09-01

    Liposomes are promising drug delivery vesicles due to their biodegradibility, large volume and biocompatibility towards both hydrophilic and hydrophobic drugs. They suffer, however, from poor stability which limits their use in controlled delivery applications. Herein, a novel method was devised for modification of liposomes with small molecules, polymers or nanoparticles to afford stimuli responsive systems that release on demand and stay relatively stable in the absence of the trigger.. This dissertation discusses thermosensitive, pH sensitive, light sensitive and magnetically triggered liposomes that have been prepared for controlled drug delivery application. RAFT polymerization was utilized for the preparation of thermosensitive liposomes (Cholesterol-PNIPAm) and acid-labile liposomes (DOPE-PAA). With low Mw Cholesterol-PNIPAm, the thermosensitive liposomes proved to be effective for controlled release and decreased the cytotoxicity of PNIPAm by eliciting the polymer doses. By crosslinking the DOPE-PAA on liposome surface with acid-labile diamine linkers, DOPE-PAA liposomes were verified to be sensitive at low pH. The effects of polymer structures (linear or hyperbranched) have also been studied for the stability and release properties of liposomes. Finally, a dual-responsive Au@SPIO embedded liposome hybrid (ALHs) was prepared with light-induced “on-and-off” function by photo-thermal process (visible light) and instant release properties triggered by alternating magnetic field, respectively. The ALH system would be further applied into the cellular imaging field as MRI contrast agent.

  9. Infectious Agents as Stimuli of Trained Innate Immunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulina Rusek

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The discoveries made over the past few years have modified the current immunological paradigm. It turns out that innate immunity cells can mount some kind of immunological memory, similar to that observed in the acquired immunity and corresponding to the defense mechanisms of lower organisms, which increases their resistance to reinfection. This phenomenon is termed trained innate immunity. It is based on epigenetic changes in innate immune cells (monocytes/macrophages, NK cells after their stimulation with various infectious or non-infectious agents. Many infectious stimuli, including bacterial or fungal cells and their components (LPS, β-glucan, chitin as well as viruses or even parasites are considered potent inducers of innate immune memory. Epigenetic cell reprogramming occurring at the heart of the phenomenon may provide a useful basis for designing novel prophylactic and therapeutic strategies to prevent and protect against multiple diseases. In this article, we present the current state of art on trained innate immunity occurring as a result of infectious agent induction. Additionally, we discuss the mechanisms of cell reprogramming and the implications for immune response stimulation/manipulation.

  10. Impaired autonomic responses to emotional stimuli in autoimmune limbic encephalitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga eSchröder

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Limbic encephalitis (LE is an autoimmune-mediated disorder that affects structures of the limbic system, in particular the amygdala. The amygdala constitutes a brain area substantial for processing of emotional, especially fear-related signals. The amygdala is also involved in neuroendocrine and autonomic functions, including skin conductance responses (SCRs to emotionally arousing stimuli. This study investigates behavioral and autonomic responses to discrete emotion-evoking and neutral film clips in a patient suffering from LE associated with contactin-associated protein-2 (CASPR2-antibodies as compared to a healthy control group. Results show a lack of SCRs in the patient while watching the film clips, with significant differences compared to healthy controls in the case of fear-inducing videos. There was no comparable impairment in behavioral data (emotion report, valence and arousal ratings. The results point to a defective modulation of sympathetic responses during emotional stimulation in patients with LE, probably due to impaired functioning of the amygdala.

  11. Effects of propofol anesthesia on the processing of noxious stimuli in the spinal cord and the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lichtner, Gregor; Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Kirilina, Evgeniya; Velten, Helena; Mavrodis, Dionysios; Scheel, Michael; Blankenburg, Felix; von Dincklage, Falk

    2018-05-15

    Drug-induced unconsciousness is an essential component of general anesthesia, commonly attributed to attenuation of higher-order processing of external stimuli and a resulting loss of information integration capabilities of the brain. In this study, we investigated how the hypnotic drug propofol at doses comparable to those in clinical practice influences the processing of somatosensory stimuli in the spinal cord and in primary and higher-order cortices. Using nociceptive reflexes, somatosensory evoked potentials and functional magnet resonance imaging (fMRI), we found that propofol abolishes the processing of innocuous and moderate noxious stimuli at low to medium concentration levels, but that intense noxious stimuli evoked spinal and cerebral responses even during deep propofol anesthesia that caused profound electroencephalogram (EEG) burst suppression. While nociceptive reflexes and somatosensory potentials were affected only in a minor way by further increasing doses of propofol after the loss of consciousness, fMRI showed that increasing propofol concentration abolished processing of intense noxious stimuli in the insula and secondary somatosensory cortex and vastly increased processing in the frontal cortex. As the fMRI functional connectivity showed congruent changes with increasing doses of propofol - namely the temporal brain areas decreasing their connectivity with the bilateral pre-/postcentral gyri and the supplementary motor area, while connectivity of the latter with frontal areas is increased - we conclude that the changes in processing of noxious stimuli during propofol anesthesia might be related to changes in functional connectivity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Dynamic bioactive stimuli-responsive polymeric surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Heather Marie

    This dissertation focuses on the design, synthesis, and development of antimicrobial and anticoagulant surfaces of polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), and poly(tetrafluoroethylene) (PTFE) polymers. Aliphatic polymeric surfaces of PE and PP polymers functionalized using click chemistry reactions by the attachment of --COOH groups via microwave plasma reactions followed by functionalization with alkyne moieties. Azide containing ampicillin (AMP) was synthesized and subsequently clicked into the alkyne prepared PE and PP surfaces. Compared to non-functionalized PP and PE surfaces, the AMP clicked surfaces exhibited substantially enhanced antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. To expand the biocompatibility of polymeric surface anticoagulant attributes, PE and PTFE surfaces were functionalized with pH-responsive poly(2-vinyl pyridine) (P2VP) and poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) polyelectrolyte tethers terminated with NH2 and COOH groups. The goal of these studies was to develop switchable stimuli-responsive polymeric surfaces that interact with biological environments and display simultaneous antimicrobial and anticoagulant properties. Antimicrobial AMP was covalently attached to --COOH terminal ends of protected PAA, while anticoagulant heparin (HEP) was attached to terminal --NH2 groups of P2VP. When pH 5.5, they collapse while the PAA segments extend. Such surfaces, when exposed to Staphylococcus aureus, inhibit bacterial growth due to the presence of AMP, as well as are effective anticoagulants due to the presence of covalently attached HEP. Comparison of these "dynamic" pH responsive surfaces with "static" surfaces terminated with AMP entities show significant enhancement of longevity and surface activity against microbial film formation. The last portion of this dissertation focuses on the covalent attachment of living T1 and Φ11 bacteriophages (phages) on PE and PTFE surface. This was accomplished by carbodiimide coupling between --COOH

  13. Facilitation of responses by task-irrelevant complex deviant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schomaker, J; Meeter, M

    2014-05-01

    Novel stimuli reliably attract attention, suggesting that novelty may disrupt performance when it is task-irrelevant. However, under certain circumstances novel stimuli can also elicit a general alerting response having beneficial effects on performance. In a series of experiments we investigated whether different aspects of novelty--stimulus novelty, contextual novelty, surprise, deviance, and relative complexity--lead to distraction or facilitation. We used a version of the visual oddball paradigm in which participants responded to an occasional auditory target. Participants responded faster to this auditory target when it occurred during the presentation of novel visual stimuli than of standard stimuli, especially at SOAs of 0 and 200 ms (Experiment 1). Facilitation was absent for both infrequent simple deviants and frequent complex images (Experiment 2). However, repeated complex deviant images did facilitate responses to the auditory target at the 200 ms SOA (Experiment 3). These findings suggest that task-irrelevant deviant visual stimuli can facilitate responses to an unrelated auditory target in a short 0-200 millisecond time-window after presentation. This only occurs when the deviant stimuli are complex relative to standard stimuli. We link our findings to the novelty P3, which is generated under the same circumstances, and to the adaptive gain theory of the locus coeruleus-norepinephrine system (Aston-Jones and Cohen, 2005), which may explain the timing of the effects. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Neural Processing of Emotional Musical and Nonmusical Stimuli in Depression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca J Lepping

    Full Text Available Anterior cingulate cortex (ACC and striatum are part of the emotional neural circuitry implicated in major depressive disorder (MDD. Music is often used for emotion regulation, and pleasurable music listening activates the dopaminergic system in the brain, including the ACC. The present study uses functional MRI (fMRI and an emotional nonmusical and musical stimuli paradigm to examine how neural processing of emotionally provocative auditory stimuli is altered within the ACC and striatum in depression.Nineteen MDD and 20 never-depressed (ND control participants listened to standardized positive and negative emotional musical and nonmusical stimuli during fMRI scanning and gave subjective ratings of valence and arousal following scanning.ND participants exhibited greater activation to positive versus negative stimuli in ventral ACC. When compared with ND participants, MDD participants showed a different pattern of activation in ACC. In the rostral part of the ACC, ND participants showed greater activation for positive information, while MDD participants showed greater activation to negative information. In dorsal ACC, the pattern of activation distinguished between the types of stimuli, with ND participants showing greater activation to music compared to nonmusical stimuli, while MDD participants showed greater activation to nonmusical stimuli, with the greatest response to negative nonmusical stimuli. No group differences were found in striatum.These results suggest that people with depression may process emotional auditory stimuli differently based on both the type of stimulation and the emotional content of that stimulation. This raises the possibility that music may be useful in retraining ACC function, potentially leading to more effective and targeted treatments.

  15. Perceptual Sensitivity and Response to Strong Stimuli Are Related

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna C. Bolders

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available To shed new light on the long-standing debate about the (independence of sensitivity to weak stimuli and overreactivity to strong stimuli, we examined the relation between these tendencies within the neurobehavioral framework of the Predictive and Reactive Control Systems (PARCS theory (Tops et al., 2010, 2014. Whereas previous studies only considered overreactivity in terms of the individual tendency to experience unpleasant affect (punishment reactivity resulting from strong sensory stimulation, we also took the individual tendency to experience pleasant affect (reward reactivity resulting from strong sensory stimulation into account. According to PARCS theory, these temperamental tendencies overlap in terms of high reactivity toward stimulation, but oppose each other in terms of the response orientation (approach or avoid. PARCS theory predicts that both types of reactivity to strong stimuli relate to sensitivity to weak stimuli, but that these relationships are suppressed due to the opposing relationship between reward and punishment reactivity. We measured punishment and reward reactivity to strong stimuli and sensitivity to weak stimuli using scales from the Adult Temperament Questionnaire (Evans and Rothbart, 2007. Sensitivity was also measured more objectively using the masked auditory threshold. We found that sensitivity to weak stimuli (both self-reported and objectively assessed was positively associated with self-reported punishment and reward reactivity to strong stimuli, but only when these reactivity measures were controlled for each other, implicating a mutual suppression effect. These results are in line with PARCS theory and suggest that sensitivity to weak stimuli and overreactivity are dependent, but this dependency is likely to be obscured if punishment and reward reactivity are not both taken into account.

  16. External-stimuli responsive systems for cancer theranostic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianhui Yao

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The upsurge of novel nanomaterials and nanotechnologies has inspired the researchers who are striving for designing safer and more efficient drug delivery systems for cancer therapy. Stimuli responsive nanomaterial offered an alternative to design controllable drug delivery system on account of its spatiotemporally controllable properties. Additionally, external stimuli (light, magnetic field and ultrasound could develop into theranostic applications for personalized medicine use because of their unique characteristics. In this review, we give a brief overview about the significant progresses and challenges of certain external-stimuli responsive systems that have been extensively investigated in drug delivery and theranostics within the last few years.

  17. Biophysical Stimuli: A Review of Electrical and Mechanical Stimulation in Hyaline Cartilage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaca-González, Juan J; Guevara, Johana M; Moncayo, Miguel A; Castro-Abril, Hector; Hata, Yoshie; Garzón-Alvarado, Diego A

    2017-09-01

    Objective Hyaline cartilage degenerative pathologies induce morphologic and biomechanical changes resulting in cartilage tissue damage. In pursuit of therapeutic options, electrical and mechanical stimulation have been proposed for improving tissue engineering approaches for cartilage repair. The purpose of this review was to highlight the effect of electrical stimulation and mechanical stimuli in chondrocyte behavior. Design Different information sources and the MEDLINE database were systematically revised to summarize the different contributions for the past 40 years. Results It has been shown that electric stimulation may increase cell proliferation and stimulate the synthesis of molecules associated with the extracellular matrix of the articular cartilage, such as collagen type II, aggrecan and glycosaminoglycans, while mechanical loads trigger anabolic and catabolic responses in chondrocytes. Conclusion The biophysical stimuli can increase cell proliferation and stimulate molecules associated with hyaline cartilage extracellular matrix maintenance.

  18. Novel stimuli are negative stimuli: evidence that negative affect is reduced in the mere exposure effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Brent M; Elias, Lorin J

    2005-04-01

    Repeated exposure of a nonreinforced stimulus results in an increased preference for that stimulus, the mere exposure effect. The present study repeatedly presented positive, negative, and neutrally affective faces to 48 participants while they made judgments about the emotional expression. Participants then rated the likeability of novel neutrally expressive faces and some of these previously presented faces, this time in their neutral expression. Faces originally presented as happy were rated as the most likeable, followed by faces originally presented as neutral. Negative and novel faces were not rated significantly differently from each other. These findings support the notion that the increase in preference towards repeatedly presented stimuli is the result of the reduction in negative affect, consistent with the modified two-factor uncertainty-reduction model and classical conditioning model of the mere exposure effect.

  19. Stimuli-Responsive Materials for Controlled Release Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Song

    2015-01-01

    The controlled release of therapeutics has been one of the major challenges for scientists and engineers during the past three decades. To address this outstanding problem, the design and fabrication of stimuli-responsive materials are pursued

  20. Adding stimuli-responsive extensions to antifouling hairy particles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Munoz Bonilla, Sandra; Herk, van A.M.; Heuts, J.P.A.

    2010-01-01

    The use of living block copolymers as stabilisers in emulsion polymerisation allowed preparation of multilayer functional hairy particles via surface-initiated ATRP. Polymer films prepared from the obtained particles present antifouling properties along with stimuli-responsive behaviour.

  1. Perceptual multistability in figure-ground segregation using motion stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gori, Simone; Giora, Enrico; Pedersini, Riccardo

    2008-11-01

    In a series of experiments using ambiguous stimuli, we investigate the effects of displaying ordered, discrete series of images on the dynamics of figure-ground segregation. For low frame presentation speeds, the series were perceived as a sequence of discontinuous, static images, while for high speeds they were perceived as continuous. We conclude that using stimuli varying continuously along one parameter results in stronger hysteresis and reduces spontaneous switching compared to matched static stimuli with discontinuous parameter changes. The additional evidence that the size of the hysteresis effects depended on trial duration is consistent with the stochastic nature of the dynamics governing figure-ground segregation. The results showed that for continuously changing stimuli, alternative figure-ground organizations are resolved via low-level, dynamical competition. A second series of experiments confirmed these results with an ambiguous stimulus based on Petter's effect.

  2. Characterization of Ferrofluid-based Stimuli-responsive Elastomers

    OpenAIRE

    Sandra dePedro; Xavier Munoz-Berbel; Rosalia Rodríguez-Rodríguez; Jordi Sort; Jose Antonio Plaza; Juergen Brugger; Andreu Llobera; Victor J Cadarso

    2016-01-01

    Stimuli-responsive materials undergo physicochemical and/or structural changes when a specific actuation is applied. They are heterogeneous composites, consisting of a non-responsive matrix where functionality is provided by the filler. Surprisingly, the synthesis of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based stimuli-responsive elastomers (SRE) has seldomly been presented. Here, we present the structural, biological, optical, magnetic, and mechanical properties of several magnetic SRE (M-SRE) obtained...

  3. Analyzing the User Behavior toward Electronic Commerce Stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Lorenzo-Romero, Carlota; Alarcón-del-Amo, María-del-Carmen; Gómez-Borja, Miguel-Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response paradigm this research analyzes the main differences between the effects of two types of web technologies: Verbal web technology (i.e., navigational structure as utilitarian stimulus) versus non-verbal web technology (music and presentation of products as hedonic stimuli). Specific webmosphere stimuli have not been examined yet as separate variables and their impact on internal and behavioral responses seems unknown. Therefore, the objective of this res...

  4. Analyzing the user behavior towards Electronic Commerce stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Carlota Lorenzo-Romero; María-del-Carmen Alarcón-del-Amo

    2016-01-01

    Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response paradigm this research analyzes the main differences between the effects of two types of web technologies: Verbal web technology (i.e. navigational structure as utilitarian stimulus) versus nonverbal web technology (music and presentation of products as hedonic stimuli). Specific webmosphere stimuli have not been examined yet as separate variables and their impact on internal and behavioral responses seems unknown. Therefore, the objective of this resea...

  5. Effects of Auditory Stimuli on Visual Velocity Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michiaki Shibata

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the effects of auditory stimuli on the perceived velocity of a moving visual stimulus. Previous studies have reported that the duration of visual events is perceived as being longer for events filled with auditory stimuli than for events not filled with auditory stimuli, ie, the so-called “filled-duration illusion.” In this study, we have shown that auditory stimuli also affect the perceived velocity of a moving visual stimulus. In Experiment 1, a moving comparison stimulus (4.2∼5.8 deg/s was presented together with filled (or unfilled white-noise bursts or with no sound. The standard stimulus was a moving visual stimulus (5 deg/s presented before or after the comparison stimulus. The participants had to judge which stimulus was moving faster. The results showed that the perceived velocity in the auditory-filled condition was lower than that in the auditory-unfilled and no-sound conditions. In Experiment 2, we investigated the effects of auditory stimuli on velocity adaptation. The results showed that the effects of velocity adaptation in the auditory-filled condition were weaker than those in the no-sound condition. These results indicate that auditory stimuli tend to decrease the perceived velocity of a moving visual stimulus.

  6. Under pressure: adolescent substance users show exaggerated neural processing of aversive interoceptive stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berk, L.; Stewart, J.L.; May, A.C.; Wiers, R.W.; Davenport, P.W.; Paulus, M.P.; Tapert, S.F.

    2015-01-01

    Aims: Adolescents with substance use disorders (SUD) exhibit hyposensitivity to pleasant internally generated (interoceptive) stimuli and hypersensitivity to external rewarding stimuli. It is unclear whether similar patterns exist for aversive interoceptive stimuli. We compared activation in the

  7. Emotional Responses to Multisensory Environmental Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliane Schreuder

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available How we perceive our environment affects the way we feel and behave. The impressions of our ambient environment are influenced by its entire spectrum of physical characteristics (e.g., luminosity, sound, scents, temperature in a dynamic and interactive way. The ability to manipulate the sensory aspects of an environment such that people feel comfortable or exhibit a desired behavior is gaining interest and social relevance. Although much is known about the sensory effects of individual environmental characteristics, their combined effects are not a priori evident due to a wide range of non-linear interactions in the processing of sensory cues. As a result, it is currently not known how different environmental characteristics should be combined to effectively induce desired emotional and behavioral effects. To gain more insight into this matter, we performed a literature review on the emotional effects of multisensory stimulation. Although we found some interesting mechanisms, the outcome also reveals that empirical evidence is still scarce and haphazard. To stimulate further discussion and research, we propose a conceptual framework that describes how environmental interventions are likely to affect human emotional responses. This framework leads to some critical research questions that suggest opportunities for further investigation.

  8. Sex-related memory recall and talkativeness for emotional stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benedetto eArnone

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have evidenced an increasing interest in sex-related brain mechanisms and cerebral lateralization subserving emotional memory, language processing, and conversational behavior. We used event related potentials (ERP to examine the influence of sex and hemisphere on brain responses to emotional stimuli. Given that the P300 component of ERP is considered a cognitive neuroelectric phenomenon, we compared left and right hemisphere P300 responses to emotional stimuli in men and women. As indexed by both amplitude and latency measures, emotional stimuli elicited more robust P300 effects in the left hemisphere in women than in men, while a stronger P300 component was elicited in the right hemisphere in men compared to women. Our findings show that the variables of sex and hemisphere interacted significantly to influence the strength of the P300 component to the emotional stimuli. Emotional stimuli were also best recalled when given a long-term, incidental memory test, a fact potentially related to the differential P300 waves at encoding. Moreover, taking into account the sex-related differences in language processing and conversational behaviour, in the present study we evaluated possible talkativeness differences between the two genders in the recollection of emotional stimuli. Our data showed that women used a higher number of words, compared to men, to describe both arousal and neutral stories. Moreover, the present results support the view that sex differences in lateralization may not be a general feature of language processing but may be related to the specific condition, such as the emotional content of stimuli.

  9. Enhanced brain susceptibility to negative stimuli in adolescents: ERP evidences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiajin eYuan

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: previous studies investigated neural substrates of emotional face processing in adolescents and its comparison with adults. As emotional faces elicit more of emotional expression recognition rather than direct emotional responding, it remains undetermined how adolescents are different from adults in brain susceptibility to emotionally stressful stimuli. Methods: Event-Related Potentials were recorded for highly negative (HN, moderately negative (MN and Neutral pictures in 20 adolescents and 20 adults while subjects performed a standard/deviant distinction task by pressing different keys, irrespective of the emotionality of deviant stimuli. Results: Adolescents exhibited more negative amplitudes for HN versus neutral pictures in N1 (100-150ms, P2 (130-190ms, N2 (210-290ms and P3 (360-440ms components. In addition, adolescents showed more negative amplitudes for MN compared to neutral pictures in N1, P2 and N2 components. By contrast, adults exhibited significant emotion effects for HN stimuli in N2 and P3 amplitudes but not in N1 and P2 amplitudes, and they did not exhibit a significant emotion effect for MN stimuli at all these components. In the 210-290ms time interval, the emotion effect for HN stimuli was significant across frontal and central regions in adolescents, while this emotion effect was noticeable only in the central region for adults. Conclusions: Adolescents are more emotionally sensitive to negative stimuli compared to adults, regardless of the emotional intensity of the stimuli, possibly due to the immature prefrontal control system over the limbic emotional inputs during adolescence. Keywords: Event-Related Potentials (ERPs; Adolescence; Emotion intensity; Negative pictures; Emotional Susceptibility

  10. Resting-state functional connectivity remains unaffected by preceding exposure to aversive visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geissmann, Léonie; Gschwind, Leo; Schicktanz, Nathalie; Deuring, Gunnar; Rosburg, Timm; Schwegler, Kyrill; Gerhards, Christiane; Milnik, Annette; Pflueger, Marlon O; Mager, Ralph; de Quervain, Dominique J F; Coynel, David

    2018-02-15

    While much is known about immediate brain activity changes induced by the confrontation with emotional stimuli, the subsequent temporal unfolding of emotions has yet to be explored. To investigate whether exposure to emotionally aversive pictures affects subsequent resting-state networks differently from exposure to neutral pictures, a resting-state fMRI study implementing a two-group repeated-measures design in healthy young adults (N = 34) was conducted. We focused on investigating (i) patterns of amygdala whole-brain and hippocampus connectivity in both a seed-to-voxel and seed-to-seed approach, (ii) whole-brain resting-state networks with an independent component analysis coupled with dual regression, and (iii) the amygdala's fractional amplitude of low frequency fluctuations, all while EEG recording potential fluctuations in vigilance. In spite of the successful emotion induction, as demonstrated by stimuli rating and a memory-facilitating effect of negative emotionality, none of the resting-state measures was differentially affected by picture valence. In conclusion, resting-state networks connectivity as well as the amygdala's low frequency oscillations appear to be unaffected by preceding exposure to widely used emotionally aversive visual stimuli in healthy young adults. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Audiovisual semantic interactions between linguistic and nonlinguistic stimuli: The time-courses and categorical specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi-Chuan; Spence, Charles

    2018-04-30

    We examined the time-courses and categorical specificity of the crossmodal semantic congruency effects elicited by naturalistic sounds and spoken words on the processing of visual pictures (Experiment 1) and printed words (Experiment 2). Auditory cues were presented at 7 different stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) with respect to the visual targets, and participants made speeded categorization judgments (living vs. nonliving). Three common effects were observed across 2 experiments: Both naturalistic sounds and spoken words induced a slowly emerging congruency effect when leading by 250 ms or more in the congruent compared with the incongruent condition, and a rapidly emerging inhibitory effect when leading by 250 ms or less in the incongruent condition as opposed to the noise condition. Only spoken words that did not match the visual targets elicited an additional inhibitory effect when leading by 100 ms or when presented simultaneously. Compared with nonlinguistic stimuli, the crossmodal congruency effects associated with linguistic stimuli occurred over a wider range of SOAs and occurred at a more specific level of the category hierarchy (i.e., the basic level) than was required by the task. A comprehensive framework is proposed to provide a dynamic view regarding how meaning is extracted during the processing of visual or auditory linguistic and nonlinguistic stimuli, therefore contributing to our understanding of multisensory semantic processing in humans. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  12. Stress Induction and Visual Working Memory Performance: The Effects of Emotional and Non-Emotional Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zahra Khayyer

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Background Some studies have shown working memory impairment following stressful situations. Also, researchers have found that working memory performance depends on many different factors such as emotional load of stimuli and gender. Objectives The present study aimed to determine the effects of stress induction on visual working memory (VWM performance among female and male university students. Methods This quasi-experimental research employed a posttest with only control group design (within-group study. A total of 62 university students (32 males and 30 females were randomly selected and allocated to experimental and control groups (mean age of 23.73. Using cold presser test (CPT, stress was induced and then, an n-back task was implemented to evaluate visual working memory function (such as the number of true items, time reactions, and the number of wrong items through emotional and non-emotional pictures. 100 pictures were selected from the international affective picture system (IASP with different valences. Results Results showed that stress impaired different visual working memory functions (P < 0.002 for true scores, P < 0.001 for reaction time, and P < 0.002 for wrong items. Conclusions In general, stress significantly decreases the VWM performances. On the one hand, females were strongly impressed by stress more than males and on the other hand, the VWM performance was better for emotional stimuli than non-emotional stimuli.

  13. Mesoporous silica nanoparticles for stimuli-responsive controlled drug delivery: advances, challenges, and outlook

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Song Y

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Yuanhui Song, Yihong Li, Qien Xu, Zhe Liu Wenzhou Institute of Biomaterials and Engineering (WIBE, Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, People’s Republic of China Abstract: With the development of nanotechnology, the application of nanomaterials in the field of drug delivery has attracted much attention in the past decades. Mesoporous silica nanoparticles as promising drug nanocarriers have become a new area of interest in recent years due to their unique properties and capabilities to efficiently entrap cargo molecules. This review describes the latest advances on the application of mesoporous silica nanoparticles in drug delivery. In particular, we focus on the stimuli-responsive controlled release systems that are able to respond to intracellular environmental changes, such as pH, ATP, GSH, enzyme, glucose, and H2O2. Moreover, drug delivery induced by exogenous stimuli including temperature, light, magnetic field, ultrasound, and electricity is also summarized. These advanced technologies demonstrate current challenges, and provide a bright future for precision diagnosis and treatment. Keywords: mesoporous silica nanoparticle, drug delivery system, controlled release, stimuli-responsive, chemotherapy

  14. Influence of Customer Quality Perception on the Effectiveness of Commercial Stimuli for Electronic Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido-Morgado, Álvaro; González-Benito, Óscar; Martos-Partal, Mercedes

    2016-01-01

    Creating and maintaining customer loyalty are strategic requirements for modern business. In the current competitive context, product quality, and brand experience are crucial in building and maintaining customer loyalty. Consumer loyalty, which may be classified into cognitive loyalty and affective loyalty, is related to customers' quality perception. Cue utilization theory distinguishes two dimensions for perceived quality, extrinsic quality—linked to the brand—and intrinsic quality—related with internal product characteristics. We propose that (i) cognitive loyalty is more influenced by intrinsic product quality whereas extrinsic product quality (brand name) is more salient for affective loyalty and, (ii) different commercial stimuli have a differential effectiveness on intrinsic and extrinsic perceived quality. In fact, in this study, we analyze how perceived quality dimensions may influence the effectiveness of two different commercial stimuli: displays and advertising flyers. While displays work within the point of sale under time-constrained conditions where consumers are more likely to use heuristics to simplify their decisions, advertising flyers work outside of the point of sale under low time-constrained conditions, and therefore favor a more reasoned purchase decision where systematic processing will be more likely. We analyze the role of quality perception in determining the effectiveness of both these commercial stimuli for selling products that induce high purchase involvement and perceived risk. The empirical analysis focuses on computer products sold by one of Europe's largest computer retailers and it combines scanner, observational, and survey data. The results show that both dimensions of quality perceptions moderate the influence of displays and advertising flyers on sales, but their impact is different on each commercial stimuli. Extrinsic quality perception increases to a greater extent the effect of displays due to the use of a brand

  15. Influence of Customer Quality Perception on the Effectiveness of Commercial Stimuli for Electronic Products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido-Morgado, Álvaro; González-Benito, Óscar; Martos-Partal, Mercedes

    2016-01-01

    Creating and maintaining customer loyalty are strategic requirements for modern business. In the current competitive context, product quality, and brand experience are crucial in building and maintaining customer loyalty. Consumer loyalty, which may be classified into cognitive loyalty and affective loyalty, is related to customers' quality perception. Cue utilization theory distinguishes two dimensions for perceived quality, extrinsic quality-linked to the brand-and intrinsic quality-related with internal product characteristics. We propose that (i) cognitive loyalty is more influenced by intrinsic product quality whereas extrinsic product quality (brand name) is more salient for affective loyalty and, (ii) different commercial stimuli have a differential effectiveness on intrinsic and extrinsic perceived quality. In fact, in this study, we analyze how perceived quality dimensions may influence the effectiveness of two different commercial stimuli: displays and advertising flyers. While displays work within the point of sale under time-constrained conditions where consumers are more likely to use heuristics to simplify their decisions, advertising flyers work outside of the point of sale under low time-constrained conditions, and therefore favor a more reasoned purchase decision where systematic processing will be more likely. We analyze the role of quality perception in determining the effectiveness of both these commercial stimuli for selling products that induce high purchase involvement and perceived risk. The empirical analysis focuses on computer products sold by one of Europe's largest computer retailers and it combines scanner, observational, and survey data. The results show that both dimensions of quality perceptions moderate the influence of displays and advertising flyers on sales, but their impact is different on each commercial stimuli. Extrinsic quality perception increases to a greater extent the effect of displays due to the use of a brand name

  16. Influence of customer quality perception on the effectiveness of commercial stimuli for electronic products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Álvaro eGarrido-Morgado

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Creating and maintaining customer loyalty are strategic requirements for modern business. In the current competitive context, product quality and brand experience are crucial in building and maintaining customer loyalty. Consumer loyalty, which may be classified into cognitive loyalty and affective loyalty, is related to customers’ quality perception. Cue utilization theory distinguishes two dimensions for perceived quality, extrinsic quality –linked to the brand– and intrinsic quality –related with internal product characteristics. We propose that (i cognitive loyalty is more influenced by intrinsic product quality whereas extrinsic product quality (brand name is more salient for affective loyalty and, (ii different commercial stimuli have a differential effectiveness on intrinsic and extrinsic perceived quality. In fact, in this study, we analyze how perceived quality dimensions may influence the effectiveness of two different commercial stimuli: displays and advertising flyers. While displays work within the point of sale under time-constrained conditions where consumers are more likely to use heuristics to simplify their decisions, advertising flyers work outside of the point of sale under low time-constrained conditions, and therefore favor a more reasoned purchase decision where systematic processing will be more likely. We analyze the role of quality perception in determining the effectiveness of both these commercial stimuli for selling products that induce high purchase involvement and perceived risk. The empirical analysis focuses on computer products sold by one of Europe’s largest computer retailers and it combines scanner, observational, and survey data. The results show that both dimensions of quality perceptions moderate the influence of displays and advertising flyers on sales, but their impact is different on each commercial stimuli. Extrinsic quality perception increases to a greater extent the effect of displays due

  17. Stimuli-Responsive Materials for Controlled Release Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Song

    2015-04-01

    The controlled release of therapeutics has been one of the major challenges for scientists and engineers during the past three decades. To address this outstanding problem, the design and fabrication of stimuli-responsive materials are pursued to guarantee the controlled release of cargo at a specific time and with an accurate amount. Upon applying different stimuli such as light, magnetic field, heat, pH change, enzymes or redox, functional materials change their physicochemical properties through physical transformation or chemical reactions, allowing the release of payload agents on demand. This dissertation studied three stimuli-responsive membrane systems for controlled release from films of macro sizes to microcapsules of nano sizes. The first membrane system is a polymeric composite film which can decrease and sustain diffusion upon light irradiation. The photo-response of membranes is based on the photoreaction of cinnamic derivatives. The second one is composite membrane which can improve diffusion upon heating. The thermo-response of membranes comes from the volume phase transition ability of hydrogels. The third one is microcapsule which can release encapsulated agents upon light irradiation. The photo-response of capsules results from the photoreaction of nitrobenzyl derivatives. The study on these membrane systems reveals that stimuli-responsive release can be achieved by utilizing different functional materials on either macro or micro level. Based on the abundant family of smart materials, designing and fabricating stimuli-responsive systems shall lead to various advanced release processes on demand for biomedical applications.

  18. Teaching children with autism spectrum disorder to tact olfactory stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dass, Tina K; Kisamore, April N; Vladescu, Jason C; Reeve, Kenneth F; Reeve, Sharon A; Taylor-Santa, Catherine

    2018-05-28

    Research on tact acquisition by children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has often focused on teaching participants to tact visual stimuli. It is important to evaluate procedures for teaching tacts of nonvisual stimuli (e.g., olfactory, tactile). The purpose of the current study was to extend the literature on secondary target instruction and tact training by evaluating the effects of a discrete-trial instruction procedure involving (a) echoic prompts, a constant prompt delay, and error correction for primary targets; (b) inclusion of secondary target stimuli in the consequent portion of learning trials; and (c) multiple exemplar training on the acquisition of item tacts of olfactory stimuli, emergence of category tacts of olfactory stimuli, generalization of category tacts, and emergence of category matching, with three children diagnosed with ASD. Results showed that all participants learned the item and category tacts following teaching, participants demonstrated generalization across category tacts, and category matching emerged for all participants. © 2018 Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  19. Steady-state VEP responses to uncomfortable stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Hare, Louise

    2017-02-01

    Periodic stimuli, such as op-art, can evoke a range of aversive sensations included in the term visual discomfort. Illusory motion effects are elicited by fixational eye movements, but the cortex might also contribute to effects of discomfort. To investigate this possibility, steady-state visually evoked responses (SSVEPs) to contrast-matched op-art-based stimuli were measured at the same time as discomfort judgements. On average, discomfort reduced with increasing spatial frequency of the pattern. In contrast, the peak amplitude of the SSVEP response was around the midrange spatial frequencies. Like the discomfort judgements, SSVEP responses to the highest spatial frequencies were lowest amplitude, but the relationship breaks down between discomfort and SSVEP for the lower spatial frequency stimuli. This was not explicable by gross eye movements as measured using the facial electrodes. There was a weak relationship between the peak SSVEP responses and discomfort judgements for some stimuli, suggesting that discomfort can be explained in part by electrophysiological responses measured at the level of the cortex. However, there is a breakdown of this relationship in the case of lower spatial frequency stimuli, which remains unexplained. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Absent Audiovisual Integration Elicited by Peripheral Stimuli in Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Yanna; Suzuki, Keisuke; Yang, Weiping; Ren, Yanling; Wu, Fengxia; Yang, Jiajia; Takahashi, Satoshi; Ejima, Yoshimichi; Wu, Jinglong; Hirata, Koichi

    2018-01-01

    The basal ganglia, which have been shown to be a significant multisensory hub, are disordered in Parkinson's disease (PD). This study was to investigate the audiovisual integration of peripheral stimuli in PD patients with/without sleep disturbances. Thirty-six age-matched normal controls (NC) and 30 PD patients were recruited for an auditory/visual discrimination experiment. The mean response times for each participant were analyzed using repeated measures ANOVA and race model. The results showed that the response to all stimuli was significantly delayed for PD compared to NC (all p audiovisual stimuli was significantly faster than that to unimodal stimuli in both NC and PD ( p audiovisual integration was absent in PD; however, it did occur in NC. Further analysis showed that there was no significant audiovisual integration in PD with/without cognitive impairment or in PD with/without sleep disturbances. Furthermore, audiovisual facilitation was not associated with Hoehn and Yahr stage, disease duration, or the presence of sleep disturbances (all p > 0.05). The current results showed that audiovisual multisensory integration for peripheral stimuli is absent in PD regardless of sleep disturbances and further suggested the abnormal audiovisual integration might be a potential early manifestation of PD.

  1. Protein-surface interactions on stimuli-responsive polymeric biomaterials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, Michael C; Toomey, Ryan G; Gallant, Nathan D

    2016-03-04

    Responsive surfaces: a review of the dependence of protein adsorption on the reversible volume phase transition in stimuli-responsive polymers. Specifically addressed are a widely studied subset: thermoresponsive polymers. Findings are also generalizable to other materials which undergo a similarly reversible volume phase transition. As of 2015, over 100,000 articles have been published on stimuli-responsive polymers and many more on protein-biomaterial interactions. Significantly, fewer than 100 of these have focused specifically on protein interactions with stimuli-responsive polymers. These report a clear trend of increased protein adsorption in the collapsed state compared to the swollen state. This control over protein interactions makes stimuli-responsive polymers highly useful in biomedical applications such as wound repair scaffolds, on-demand drug delivery, and antifouling surfaces. Outstanding questions are whether the protein adsorption is reversible with the volume phase transition and whether there is a time-dependence. A clear understanding of protein interactions with stimuli-responsive polymers will advance theoretical models, experimental results, and biomedical applications.

  2. Role of leukotrienes in NSAID induced gastric ulceration and inflammation in wistar rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maulik N Gandhi

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To evaluate the effects of Montelukast and Curcumin against indomethacin induced gastric damage in rats in order to assess the role of leukotriene (LTs if any, in non steroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID induced gastroinflammation. Methods: The effects of Montelukast (10 mg/kg and Curcumin (100 mg/kg were observed on gastric lesion induced by Indomethacin. The blood samples were analyzed for neutrophil adhesion and lipid peroxide levels in gastric tissue measured spectrophotometrically. The skin vascular permeability study was performed by using compound 48/80 induced vascular permeability model. Results: Montelukast and Curcumin significantly reduced Indomethacin induced gastric lesion score. Pretreatment with Montelukast and Curcumin significantly counteracted Indomethacin induced gastropathy by a combination of its effect on inhibition of neutrophil adherence, through decrease in related production of free radicals that disrupts integrity of stomach mucosa and decrease in vascular permeability as compared to Indomethacin group. The results of the present study further indicates the role of 5-LOX metabolites in NSAIDs induced gastro inflammation and suggests that Montelukast and Curcumin counteracted the Indomethacin induced gastropathy by a combination of its effect on inhibition of neutrophil adherence and through decrease in related production of free radicals that disrupts integrity of stomach mucosa. Conclusions: Experimental data clearly demonstrated the role of LTs was indomethacin induced gastric ulcers. However, inhibition of ulcerogenic events by Montelukast and Curcumin is suggestive of an important balance between COX and 5-LOX products.

  3. Rapid and Persistent Suppression of Feeding Behavior Induced by Sensitization Training in "Aplysia"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acheampong, Ama; Kelly, Kathleen; Shields-Johnson, Maria; Hajovsky, Julie; Wainwright, Marcy; Mozzachiodi, Riccardo

    2012-01-01

    In "Aplysia," noxious stimuli induce sensitization of defensive responses. However, it remains largely unknown whether such stimuli also alter nondefensive behaviors. In this study, we examined the effects of noxious stimuli on feeding. Strong electric shocks, capable of inducing sensitization, also led to the suppression of feeding. The use of…

  4. Integrating Dimensional and Discrete Theories of Emotions: A New Set of Anger- and Fear-Eliciting Stimuli for Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scaini, Simona; Rancoita, Paola M V; Martoni, Riccardo M; Omero, Micol; Ogliari, Anna; Brombin, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    The selection of appropriate stimuli for inducing specific emotional states has become one of the most challenging topics in psychological research. In the literature there is a lack of affective picture database specifically suited to investigate emotional response in children. Here the authors present the methodology that led us to create a new database (called Anger- and Fear-Eliciting Stimuli for Children) of affective stimuli inducing experiences of 3 target emotions (neutral, anger, and fear) to use in experimental session involving children. A total of 84 children were asked to (a) indicate the perceived emotion and its intensity and (b) rate the three affective dimensions of the Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM). Based on concordance between labeled and expected target emotion, the authors decided to select 15 stimuli to be included in Multivariate modeling techniques were applied to evaluate the association between expected target emotion and SAM ratings. The authors found that the hit rate for the neutral pictures was good (greater than 81%), for fear-eliciting pictures it was greater than 64%, and for anger-eliciting pictures it was moderate (between 45% and 56%). The study results reveal also an age effect only in the arousal scale. However, the authors did not find significant gender-related differences in SAM ratings.

  5. Pedophilic brain potential responses to adult erotic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knott, Verner; Impey, Danielle; Fisher, Derek; Delpero, Emily; Fedoroff, Paul

    2016-02-01

    Cognitive mechanisms associated with the relative lack of sexual interest in adults by pedophiles are poorly understood and may benefit from investigations examining how the brain processes adult erotic stimuli. The current study used event-related brain potentials (ERP) to investigate the time course of the explicit processing of erotic, emotional, and neutral pictures in 22 pedophilic patients and 22 healthy controls. Consistent with previous studies, early latency anterior ERP components were highly selective for erotic pictures. Although the ERPs elicited by emotional stimuli were similar in patients and controls, an early frontal positive (P2) component starting as early as 185 ms was significantly attenuated and slow to onset in pedophilia, and correlated with a clinical measure of cognitive distortions. Failure of rapid attentional capture by erotic stimuli suggests a relative reduction in early processing in pedophilic patients which may be associated with relatively diminished sexual interest in adults. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  6. Response to various periods of mechanical stimuli in Physarum plasmodium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Umedachi, Takuya; Ito, Kentaro; Kobayashi, Ryo; Ishiguro, Akio; Nakagaki, Toshiyuki

    2017-01-01

    Response to mechanical stimuli is a fundamental and critical ability for living cells to survive in hazardous conditions or to form adaptive and functional structures against force(s) from the environment. Although this ability has been extensively studied by molecular biology strategies, it is also important to investigate the ability from the viewpoint of biological rhythm phenomena so as to reveal the mechanisms that underlie these phenomena. Here, we use the plasmodium of the true slime mold Physarum polycephalum as the experimental system for investigating this ability. The plasmodium was repetitively stretched for various periods during which its locomotion speed was observed. Since the plasmodium has inherent oscillation cycles of protoplasmic streaming and thickness variation, how the plasmodium responds to various periods of external stretching stimuli can shed light on the other biological rhythm phenomena. The experimental results show that the plasmodium exhibits response to periodic mechanical stimulation and changes its locomotion speed depending on the period of the stretching stimuli. (paper)

  7. Emotional conditioning to masked stimuli and modulation of visuospatial attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaver, John D; Mogg, Karin; Bradley, Brendan P

    2005-03-01

    Two studies investigated the effects of conditioning to masked stimuli on visuospatial attention. During the conditioning phase, masked snakes and spiders were paired with a burst of white noise, or paired with an innocuous tone, in the conditioned stimulus (CS)+ and CS- conditions, respectively. Attentional allocation to the CSs was then assessed with a visual probe task, in which the CSs were presented unmasked (Experiment 1) or both unmasked and masked (Experiment 2), together with fear-irrelevant control stimuli (flowers and mushrooms). In Experiment 1, participants preferentially allocated attention to CS+ relative to control stimuli. Experiment 2 suggested that this attentional bias depended on the perceived aversiveness of the unconditioned stimulus and did not require conscious recognition of the CSs during both acquisition and expression. Copyright 2005 APA, all rights reserved.

  8. Generating Stimuli for Neuroscience Using PsychoPy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peirce, Jonathan W

    2008-01-01

    PsychoPy is a software library written in Python, using OpenGL to generate very precise visual stimuli on standard personal computers. It is designed to allow the construction of as wide a variety of neuroscience experiments as possible, with the least effort. By writing scripts in standard Python syntax users can generate an enormous variety of visual and auditory stimuli and can interact with a wide range of external hardware (enabling its use in fMRI, EEG, MEG etc.). The structure of scripts is simple and intuitive. As a result, new experiments can be written very quickly, and trying to understand a previously written script is easy, even with minimal code comments. PsychoPy can also generate movies and image sequences to be used in demos or simulated neuroscience experiments. This paper describes the range of tools and stimuli that it provides and the environment in which experiments are conducted.

  9. Generating stimuli for neuroscience using PsychoPy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan W Peirce

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available PsychoPy is a software library written in Python, using OpenGL to generate very precise visual stimuli on standard personal computers. It is designed to allow the construction of as wide a variety of neuroscience experiments as possible, with the least effort. By writing scripts in standard Python syntax users can generate an enormous variety of visual and auditory stimuli and can interact with a wide range of external hardware (enabling its use in fMRI, EEG, MEG etc.. The structure of scripts is simple and intuitive. As a result, new experiments can be written very quickly, and trying to understand a previously written script is easy, even with minimal code comments. PsychoPy can also generate movies and image sequences to be used in demos or simulated neuroscience experiments. This paper describes the range of tools and stimuli that it provides and the environment in which experiments are conducted.

  10. Stimuli-responsive nanomaterials for therapeutic protein delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yue; Sun, Wujin; Gu, Zhen

    2014-11-28

    Protein therapeutics have emerged as a significant role in treatment of a broad spectrum of diseases, including cancer, metabolic disorders and autoimmune diseases. The efficacy of protein therapeutics, however, is limited by their instability, immunogenicity and short half-life. In order to overcome these barriers, tremendous efforts have recently been made in developing controlled protein delivery systems. Stimuli-triggered release is an appealing and promising approach for protein delivery and has made protein delivery with both spatiotemporal- and dosage-controlled manners possible. This review surveys recent advances in controlled protein delivery of proteins or peptides using stimuli-responsive nanomaterials. Strategies utilizing both physiological and external stimuli are introduced and discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Attentional capture by social stimuli in young infants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maxie eGluckman

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the possibility that a range of social stimuli capture the attention of 6-month-old infants when in competition with other non-face objects. Infants viewed a series of six-item arrays in which one target item was a face, body part, or animal as their eye movements were recorded. Stimulus arrays were also processed for relative salience of each item in terms of color, luminance, and amount of contour. Targets were rarely the most visually salient items in the arrays, yet infants’ first looks toward all three target types were above chance, and dwell times for targets exceeded other stimulus types. Girls looked longer at faces than did boys, but there were no sex differences for other stimuli. These results are interpreted in a context of learning to discriminate between different classes of animate stimuli, perhaps in line with affordances for social interaction, and origins of sex differences in social attention.

  12. Effect of stimuli, transducers and gender on acoustic change complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hemanth N. Shetty

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of stimuli, transducers and gender on the latency and amplitude of acoustic change complex (ACC. ACC is a multiple overlapping P1-N1-P2 complex reflecting acoustic changes across the entire stimulus. Fifteen males and 15 females, in the age range of 18 to 25 (mean=21.67 years, having normal hearing participated in the study. The ACC was recorded using the vertical montage. The naturally produced stimuli /sa/ and /si/ were presented through the insert earphone/loud speaker to record the ACC. The ACC obtained from different stimuli presented through different transducers from male/female participants were analyzed using mixed analysis of variance. Dependent t-test and independent t-test were performed when indicated. There was a significant difference in latency of 2N1 at the transition, with latency for /sa/ being earlier; but not at the onset portions of ACC. There was no significant difference in amplitude of ACC between the stimuli. Among the transducers, there was no significant difference in latency and amplitude of ACC, for both /sa/ and /si/ stimuli. Female participants showed earlier latency for 2N1 and larger amplitude of N1 and 2P2 than male participants, which was significant. ACC provides important insight in detecting the subtle spectral changes in each stimulus. Among the transducers, no difference in ACC was noted as the spectra of stimuli delivered were within the frequency response of the transducers. The earlier 2N1 latency and larger N1 and 2P2 amplitudes noticed in female participants could be due to smaller head circumference. The findings of this study will be useful in determining the capacity of the auditory pathway in detecting subtle spectral changes in the stimulus at the level of the auditory cortex.

  13. Generating Stimuli for Neuroscience Using PsychoPy

    OpenAIRE

    Peirce, Jonathan W.

    2009-01-01

    PsychoPy is a software library written in Python, using OpenGL to generate very precise visual stimuli on standard personal computers. It is designed to allow the construction of as wide a variety of neuroscience experiments as possible, with the least effort. By writing scripts in standard Python syntax users can generate an enormous variety of visual and auditory stimuli and can interact with a wide range of external hardware (enabling its use in fMRI, EEG, MEG etc.). The structure of scrip...

  14. Heterogeneity reduces sensitivity of cell death for TNF-Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schliemann Monica

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Apoptosis is a form of programmed cell death essential for the maintenance of homeostasis and the removal of potentially damaged cells in multicellular organisms. By binding its cognate membrane receptor, TNF receptor type 1 (TNF-R1, the proinflammatory cytokine Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF activates pro-apoptotic signaling via caspase activation, but at the same time also stimulates nuclear factor κB (NF-κB-mediated survival pathways. Differential dose-response relationships of these two major TNF signaling pathways have been described experimentally and using mathematical modeling. However, the quantitative analysis of the complex interplay between pro- and anti-apoptotic signaling pathways is an open question as it is challenging for several reasons: the overall signaling network is complex, various time scales are present, and cells respond quantitatively and qualitatively in a heterogeneous manner. Results This study analyzes the complex interplay of the crosstalk of TNF-R1 induced pro- and anti-apoptotic signaling pathways based on an experimentally validated mathematical model. The mathematical model describes the temporal responses on both the single cell level as well as the level of a heterogeneous cell population, as observed in the respective quantitative experiments using TNF-R1 stimuli of different strengths and durations. Global sensitivity of the heterogeneous population was quantified by measuring the average gradient of time of death versus each population parameter. This global sensitivity analysis uncovers the concentrations of Caspase-8 and Caspase-3, and their respective inhibitors BAR and XIAP, as key elements for deciding the cell's fate. A simulated knockout of the NF-κB-mediated anti-apoptotic signaling reveals the importance of this pathway for delaying the time of death, reducing the death rate in the case of pulse stimulation and significantly increasing cell-to-cell variability. Conclusions Cell

  15. Multifunctional fluorescent sensing of chemical and physical stimuli using smart riboflavin-5'-phosphate/Eu3+ coordination polymers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Shi-Fan; Zhang, Jing-Fei; Chen, Zi-Han; Han, Xin-Yue; Zhang, Min; Shi, Guoyue

    2018-07-05

    A novel type of stimuli-responsive fluorescent polymers has been developed via the self-assembly of riboflavin-5'-phosphate (RiP) as ligand and europium (III) (Eu 3+ ) as central metal ion coordinated with the ligand. The as-prepared RiP/Eu 3+ coordination polymers (RiP/Eu 3+ CPs) are smart and multifunctional for respectively responding to chemical and physical stimuli, in which RiP acts as the stimuli-responsive fluorescent signal indicator. For sensing chemical stimuli, 2,6-pyridinedicarboxylic acid (DPA, an anthrax biomarker) having higher bonding force towards Eu 3+ can grab it from smart RiP/Eu 3+ CPs through competition reaction, resulting in the release of RiP for highly sensitive and selective DPA monitoring in a mix-and-read fluorescent enhancement format, and the detection limit is as low as 41.5 nM. Density functional theory (DFT) calculations has been also performed to verify the DPA sensing principle. For sensing physical stimuli, the smart RiP/Eu 3+ CPs can be acting as a novel sensory probe for the determination of temperature from 10 °C to 40 °C based on the thermal-induced disruption of the binding between Eu 3+ and RiP and the disassembly of the smart RiP/Eu 3+ CPs accompanying with the recovery of the fluorescence of RiP. This work establishes an effective platform for multifunctional sensing of chemical and physical stimuli utilizing both smart lanthanide nanoscale coordination polymers (LNCPs) and novel sensing strategies. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Positive erotic picture stimuli for emotion research in heterosexual females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacob, Gitta Anne; Arntz, Arnoud; Domes, Gregor; Reiss, Neele; Siep, Nicolette

    2011-12-30

    In most experimental studies, emotional pictures are widely used as stimulus material. However, there is still a lack of standardization of picture stimuli displaying erotic relationships, despite the association between a number of psychological problems and severe impairments and problems in intimate relationships. The aim of the study was to test a set of erotic stimuli, with the potential to be used in experimental studies, with heterosexual female subjects. Twenty International Affective Picture System (IAPS) pictures and an additional 100 pictures showing romantic but not explicitly sexual scenes and/or attractive single males were selected. All pictures were rated with respect to valence, arousal, and dominance by 41 heterosexual women and compared to pictures with negative, positive, and neutral emotional valence. Erotic IAPS pictures and our additional erotic pictures did not differ in any of the evaluation dimensions. Analyses of variance (ANOVAs) for valence, arousal, and dominance comparing different picture valence categories showed strong effects for category. However, valence was not significantly different between erotic and positive pictures, while arousal and control were not significantly different between positive and neutral pictures. The pictures of our new set are as positive for heterosexual women as highly positive IAPS pictures, but higher in arousal and dominance. The picture set can be used in experimental psychiatric studies requiring high numbers of stimuli per category. Limitations are the restriction of stimuli application to heterosexual females only and to self-report data. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Heightened attentional capture by visual food stimuli in anorexia nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neimeijer, Renate A M; Roefs, Anne; de Jong, Peter J

    2017-08-01

    The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that anorexia nervosa (AN) patients are relatively insensitive to the attentional capture of visual food stimuli. Attentional avoidance of food might help AN patients to prevent more elaborate processing of food stimuli and the subsequent generation of craving, which might enable AN patients to maintain their strict diet. Participants were 66 restrictive AN spectrum patients and 55 healthy controls. A single-target rapid serial visual presentation task was used with food and disorder-neutral cues as critical distracter stimuli and disorder-neutral pictures as target stimuli. AN spectrum patients showed diminished task performance when visual food cues were presented in close temporal proximity of the to-be-identified target. In contrast to our hypothesis, results indicate that food cues automatically capture AN spectrum patients' attention. One explanation could be that the enhanced attentional capture of food cues in AN is driven by the relatively high threat value of food items in AN. Implications and suggestions for future research are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. Temporal attention for visual food stimuli in restrained eaters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neimeijer, Renate A. M.; de Jong, Peter J.; Roefs, Anne

    2013-01-01

    Although restrained eaters try to limit their food intake, they often fail and indulge in exactly those foods that they want to avoid. A possible explanation is a temporal attentional bias for food cues. It could be that for these people food stimuli are processed relatively efficiently and require

  19. External stimuli response on a novel chitosan hydrogel crosslinked ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The influence of external stimuli such as pH, temperature, and ionic strength of the swelling media on equilibrium swelling properties has been observed. Hydrogels showed a typical pH and temperature responsive behaviour such as low pH and high temperature has maximum swelling while high pH and low temperature ...

  20. Secondary hyperalgesia to heat stimuli after burn injury in man

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, J L; Kehlet, H

    1998-01-01

    The aim of the study was to examine the presence of hyperalgesia to heat stimuli within the zone of secondary hyperalgesia to punctate mechanical stimuli. A burn was produced on the medial part of the non-dominant crus in 15 healthy volunteers with a 50 x 25 mm thermode (47 degrees C, 7 min......), and assessments were made 70 min and 40 min before, and 0, 1, and 2 h after the burn injury. Hyperalgesia to mechanical and heat stimuli were examined by von Frey hairs and contact thermodes (3.75 and 12.5 cm2), and pain responses were rated with a visual analog scale (0-100). The area of secondary hyperalgesia...... to punctate stimuli was assessed with a rigid von Frey hair (462 mN). The heat pain responses to 45 degrees C in 5 s (3.75 cm2) were tested in the area just outside the burn, where the subjects developed secondary hyperalgesia, and on the lateral crus where no subject developed secondary hyperalgesia (control...

  1. Precuneus-prefrontal activity during awareness of visual verbal stimuli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjaer, T W; Nowak, M; Kjær, Klaus Wilbrandt

    2001-01-01

    Awareness is a personal experience, which is only accessible to the rest of world through interpretation. We set out to identify a neural correlate of visual awareness, using brief subliminal and supraliminal verbal stimuli while measuring cerebral blood flow distribution with H(2)(15)O PET. Awar...

  2. Stress improves selective attention towards emotionally neutral left ear stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoskin, Robert; Hunter, M D; Woodruff, P W R

    2014-09-01

    Research concerning the impact of psychological stress on visual selective attention has produced mixed results. The current paper describes two experiments which utilise a novel auditory oddball paradigm to test the impact of psychological stress on auditory selective attention. Participants had to report the location of emotionally-neutral auditory stimuli, while ignoring task-irrelevant changes in their content. The results of the first experiment, in which speech stimuli were presented, suggested that stress improves the ability to selectively attend to left, but not right ear stimuli. When this experiment was repeated using tonal stimuli the same result was evident, but only for female participants. Females were also found to experience greater levels of distraction in general across the two experiments. These findings support the goal-shielding theory which suggests that stress improves selective attention by reducing the attentional resources available to process task-irrelevant information. The study also demonstrates, for the first time, that this goal-shielding effect extends to auditory perception. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Stimulus intensity and the psychological refractory period II auditive stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koster, W.G.; Schuur, van R.

    1970-01-01

    In experiments in which stimuli are presented closely spaced in time, subjects exhibit a limitation in the transmission of the signals. The result is either a delayed response or a less accurate response. This phenomenon has been called the psychological refractory phase (Telford, 1931). It is

  4. Reversal Negativity and Bistable Stimuli: Attention, Awareness, or Something Else?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Intaite, Monika; Koivisto, Mika; Ruksenas, Osvaldas; Revonsuo, Antti

    2010-01-01

    Ambiguous (or bistable) figures are visual stimuli that have two mutually exclusive perceptual interpretations that spontaneously alternate with each other. Perceptual reversals, as compared with non-reversals, typically elicit a negative difference called reversal negativity (RN), peaking around 250 ms from stimulus onset. The cognitive…

  5. Exposure to Virtual Social Stimuli Modulates Subjective Pain Reports

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob M Vigil

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Contextual factors, including the gender of researchers, influence experimental and patient pain reports. It is currently not known how social stimuli influence pain percepts, nor which types of sensory modalities of communication, such as auditory, visual or olfactory cues associated with person perception and gender processing, produce these effects.

  6. Music influences ratings of the affect of visual stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hanser, W.E.; Mark, R.E.

    2013-01-01

    This review provides an overview of recent studies that have examined how music influences the judgment of emotional stimuli, including affective pictures and film clips. The relevant findings are incorporated within a broader theory of music and emotion, and suggestions for future research are

  7. Cortical oscillations modulated by congruent and incongruent audiovisual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herdman, A T; Fujioka, T; Chau, W; Ross, B; Pantev, C; Picton, T W

    2004-11-30

    Congruent or incongruent grapheme-phoneme stimuli are easily perceived as one or two linguistic objects. The main objective of this study was to investigate the changes in cortical oscillations that reflect the processing of congruent and incongruent audiovisual stimuli. Graphemes were Japanese Hiragana characters for four different vowels (/a/, /o/, /u/, and /i/). They were presented simultaneously with their corresponding phonemes (congruent) or non-corresponding phonemes (incongruent) to native-speaking Japanese participants. Participants' reaction times to the congruent audiovisual stimuli were significantly faster by 57 ms as compared to reaction times to incongruent stimuli. We recorded the brain responses for each condition using a whole-head magnetoencephalograph (MEG). A novel approach to analysing MEG data, called synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM), was used to identify event-related changes in cortical oscillations involved in audiovisual processing. The SAM contrast between congruent and incongruent responses revealed greater event-related desynchonization (8-16 Hz) bilaterally in the occipital lobes and greater event-related synchronization (4-8 Hz) in the left transverse temporal gyrus. Results from this study further support the concept of interactions between the auditory and visual sensory cortices in multi-sensory processing of audiovisual objects.

  8. Functionalized mesoporous silica nanoparticles for stimuli-responsive and targeted

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knezevic, Nikola [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2009-12-15

    Construction of functional supramolecular nanoassemblies has attracted great deal of attention in recent years for their wide spectrum of practical applications. Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) in particular were shown to be effective scaffolds for the construction of drug carriers, sensors and catalysts. Herein, we describe the synthesis and characterization of stimuli-responsive, controlled release MSN-based assemblies for drug delivery.

  9. Suppression of bulboreticular unit responses to noxious stimuli by analgesic mesencephalic stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrow, T J; Casey, K L

    1983-01-01

    The responses of 302 neurons in the medial medullary reticular formation (MRF) to a variety of noxious and innocuous somatic stimuli were studied in anesthetized and awake rats. In addition, the effects of analgesic electrical stimulation in the mesencephalon (MES) on unit responses were examined. Tail shock was the most effective stimulus, exciting more than 80% of all units recorded. This stimulus was considered separately during data analysis, since it could not be classified as noxious or innocuous. Noxious somatic stimuli (including pinch, firm pressure, pin prick, and radiant heating of the tail above 45 degrees C were especially effective in eliciting discharge in a significant fraction of all cells in both awake (123/205) and anesthetized (45/97) animals. Nociceptive neurons could be classified as nociceptive specific (NS) or wide dynamic range (WDR) depending on their responses to all somatic stimuli tested. Nociceptive neurons showed no preferential anatomical distribution. Most neurons, including those responsive to noxious inputs, exhibited large, often bilateral receptive fields which frequently covered the tail, one or more limbs, and extensive areas of the body or head. Electrical stimulation within or adjacent to the mesencephalic periaqueductal gray matter depressed the spontaneous and evoked discharge of MRF neurons in both acute and chronic preparations. This inhibition showed a significant preference (p less than 0.001, chi-square statistic) for units that were excited by somatic and especially noxious stimuli. No units were facilitated by MES stimulation. In the awake rat, unit suppression closely followed the time course and level of MES-induced analgesia. Excitability data from the acute experiments suggest that this response inhibition may be the result of a direct action on MRF neurons. Anesthesia severely depressed the spontaneous discharge of MRF neurons as well as the activity evoked by innocuous somatic stimulation. Our data suggest

  10. Timing of presentation and nature of stimuli determine retroactive interference with social recognition memory in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perna, Judith Camats; Wotjak, Carsten T; Stork, Oliver; Engelmann, Mario

    2015-05-01

    The present study was designed to further investigate the nature of stimuli and the timing of their presentation, which can induce retroactive interference with social recognition memory in mice. In accordance with our previous observations, confrontation with an unfamiliar conspecific juvenile 3h and 6h, but not 22 h, after the initial learning session resulted in retroactive interference. The same effect was observed with the exposure to both enantiomers of the monomolecular odour carvone, and with a novel object. Exposure to a loud tone (12 KHz, 90 dB) caused retroactive interference at 6h, but not 3h and 22 h, after sampling. Our data show that retroactive interference of social recognition memory can be induced by exposing the experimental subjects to the defined stimuli presented <22 h after learning in their home cage. The distinct interference triggered by the tone presentation at 6h after sampling may be linked to the intrinsic aversiveness of the loud tone and suggests that at this time point memory consolidation is particularly sensitive to stress. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Relationship of extinction to perceptual thresholds for single stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meador, K J; Ray, P G; Day, L J; Loring, D W

    2001-04-24

    To demonstrate the effects of target stimulus intensity on extinction to double simultaneous stimuli. Attentional deficits contribute to extinction in patients with brain lesions, but extinction (i.e., masking) can also be produced in healthy subjects. The relationship of extinction to perceptual thresholds for single stimuli remains uncertain. Brief electrical pulses were applied simultaneously to the left and right index fingers of 16 healthy volunteers (8 young and 8 elderly adults) and 4 patients with right brain stroke (RBS). The stimulus to be perceived (i.e., target stimulus) was given at the lowest perceptual threshold to perceive any single stimulus (i.e., Minimal) and at the threshold to perceive 100% of single stimuli. The mask stimulus (i.e., stimulus given to block the target) was applied to the contralateral hand at intensities just below discomfort. Extinction was less for target stimuli at 100% than Minimal threshold for healthy subjects. Extinction of left targets was greater in patients with RBS than elderly control subjects. Left targets were extinguished less than right in healthy subjects. In contrast, the majority of left targets were extinguished in patients with RBS even when right mask intensity was reduced below right 100% threshold for single stimuli. RBS patients had less extinction for right targets despite having greater left mask - threshold difference than control subjects. In patients with RBS, right "targets" at 100% threshold extinguished left "masks" (20%) almost as frequently as left masks extinguished right targets (32%). Subtle changes in target intensity affect extinction in healthy adults. Asymmetries in mask and target intensities (relative to single-stimulus perceptual thresholds) affect extinction in RBS patients less for left targets but more for right targets as compared with control subjects.

  12. Cortical responses from adults and infants to complex visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulman-Galambos, C; Galambos, R

    1978-10-01

    Event-related potentials (ERPs) time-locked to the onset of visual stimuli were extracted from the EEG of normal adult (N = 16) and infant (N = 23) subjects. Subjects were not required to make any response. Stimuli delivered to the adults were 150 msec exposures of 2 sets of colored slides projected in 4 blocks, 2 in focus and 2 out of focus. Infants received 2-sec exposures of slides showing people, colored drawings or scenes from Disneyland, as well as 2-sec illuminations of the experimenter as she played a game or of a TV screen the baby was watching. The adult ERPs showed 6 waves (N1 through P4) in the 140--600-msec range; this included a positive wave at around 350 msec that was large when the stimuli were focused and smaller when they were not. The waves in the 150--200-msec range, by contrast, steadily dropped in amplitude as the experiment progressed. The infant ERPs differed greatly from the adult ones in morphology, usually showing a positive (latency about 200 msec)--negative(5--600msec)--positive(1000msec) sequence. This ERP appeared in all the stimulus conditions; its presence or absence, furthermore, was correlated with whether or not the baby seemed interested in the stimuli. Four infants failed to produce these ERPs; an independent measure of attention to the stimuli, heart rate deceleration, was demonstrated in two of them. An electrode placed beneath the eye to monitor eye movements yielded ERPs closely resembling those derived from the scalp in most subjects; reasons are given for assigning this response to activity in the brain, probably at the frontal pole. This study appears to be one of the first to search for cognitive 'late waves' in a no-task situation. The results suggest that further work with such task-free paradigms may yield additional useful techniques for studying the ERP.

  13. P1-32: Response of Human Visual System to Paranormal Stimuli Appearing in Three-Dimensional Display

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jisoo Hong

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Three-dimensional (3D display became one of indispensable features of commercial TVs in recent years. However, the 3D content displayed by 3D display may contain the abrupt change of depth when the scene changes, which might be considered as a paranormal stimulus. Because the human visual system is not accustomed to such paranormal stimuli in natural conditions, they can cause unexpected responses which usually induce discomfort. Following the change of depth expressed by 3D display, the eyeballs rotate to match the convergence to the new 3D image position. The amount of rotation varies according to the initial longitudinal location and depth displacement of 3D image. Because the change of depth is abrupt, there is delay in human visual system following the change and such delay can be a source of discomfort. To guarantee the safety in watching 3D TV, the acceptable level of displacement in the longitudinal direction should be revealed quantitatively. Additionally, the artificially generated scenes also can provide paranormal stimuli such as periodic depth variations. In the presentation, we investigate the response of human visual system to such paranormal stimuli given by 3D display system. Using the result of investigation, we can give guideline to creating the 3D content to minimize the discomfort coming from the paranormal stimuli.

  14. Gender differences in brain activity toward unpleasant linguistic stimuli concerning interpersonal relationships: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shirao, Naoko; Okamoto, Yasumasa; Okada, Go; Ueda, Kazutaka; Yamawaki, Shigeto

    2005-10-01

    Women are more vulnerable to psychosocial stressors such as interpersonal conflicts than men, and are more susceptible to some psychiatric disorders. We hypothesized that there are differences in the brain activity of men and women while perceiving unpleasant linguistic stimuli concerning interpersonal relationships, and that they underlie the different sensitivity toward these stressful stimuli. We carried out a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study on 13 young female adults and 13 young male adults who performed an emotional decision task including sets of unpleasant words concerning interpersonal relationships and sets of neutral words. In the women, the unpleasant words more significantly activated the bilateral caudate nuclei and left putamen than the neutral words. However, among the men, there was no difference in the level of activation of any brain area induced by the unpleasant or neutral word stimuli. Upon performing the task, there was a significant gender difference in brain activation. Moreover, among the female subjects, the activation in the bilateral caudate nuclei and left thalamus was negatively correlated with the average rating of pleasantness of the words concerning interpersonal conflicts by the subject. These results demonstrate gender differences in brain activity in processing unpleasant linguistic stimuli related to interpersonal conflicts. Our data suggest that the bilateral caudate nuclei and left putamen play an important role in the perception of words concerning interpersonal conflicts in women. The bilateral caudate nuclei and left thalamus may regulate a woman's sensitivity to unpleasant information about interpersonal difficulties.

  15. Mathematical modeling of sustainable synaptogenesis by repetitive stimuli suggests signaling mechanisms in vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiromu Takizawa

    Full Text Available The mechanisms of long-term synaptic maintenance are a key component to understanding the mechanism of long-term memory. From biological experiments, a hypothesis arose that repetitive stimuli with appropriate intervals are essential to maintain new synapses for periods of longer than a few days. We successfully reproduce the time-course of relative numbers of synapses with our mathematical model in the same conditions as biological experiments, which used Adenosine-3', 5'-cyclic monophosphorothioate, Sp-isomer (Sp-cAMPS as external stimuli. We also reproduce synaptic maintenance responsiveness to intervals of Sp-cAMPS treatment accompanied by PKA activation. The model suggests a possible mechanism of sustainable synaptogenesis which consists of two steps. First, the signal transduction from an external stimulus triggers the synthesis of a new signaling protein. Second, the new signaling protein is required for the next signal transduction with the same stimuli. As a result, the network component is modified from the first network, and a different signal is transferred which triggers the synthesis of another new signaling molecule. We refer to this hypothetical mechanism as network succession. We build our model on the basis of two hypotheses: (1 a multi-step network succession induces downregulation of SSH and COFILIN gene expression, which triggers the production of stable F-actin; (2 the formation of a complex of stable F-actin with Drebrin at PSD is the critical mechanism to achieve long-term synaptic maintenance. Our simulation shows that a three-step network succession is sufficient to reproduce sustainable synapses for a period longer than 14 days. When we change the network structure to a single step network, the model fails to follow the exact condition of repetitive signals to reproduce a sufficient number of synapses. Another advantage of the three-step network succession is that this system indicates a greater tolerance of parameter

  16. Olfactory cues are subordinate to visual stimuli in a neotropical generalist weevil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Otálora-Luna

    Full Text Available The tropical root weevil Diaprepes abbreviatus is a major pest of multiple crops in the Caribbean Islands and has become a serious constraint to citrus production in the United States. Recent work has identified host and conspecific volatiles that mediate host- and mate-finding by D. abbreviatus. The interaction of light, color, and odors has not been studied in this species. The responses of male and female D. abbreviatus to narrow bandwidths of visible light emitted by LEDs offered alone and in combination with olfactory stimuli were studied in a specially-designed multiple choice arena combined with a locomotion compensator. Weevils were more attracted to wavelengths close to green and yellow compared with blue or ultraviolet, but preferred red and darkness over green. Additionally, dim green light was preferred over brighter green. Adult weevils were also attracted to the odor of its citrus host + conspecifics. However, the attractiveness of citrus + conspecific odors disappeared in the presence of a green light. Photic stimulation induced males but not females to increase their speed. In the presence of light emitted by LEDs, turning speed decreased and path straightness increased, indicating that weevils tended to walk less tortuously. Diaprepes abbreviatus showed a hierarchy between chemo- and photo-taxis in the series of experiments presented herein, where the presence of the green light abolished upwind anemotaxis elicited by the pheromone + host plant odor. Insight into the strong responses to visual stimuli of chemically stimulated insects may be provided when the amount of information supplied by vision and olfaction is compared, as the information transmission capacity of compound eyes is estimated to be several orders of magnitude higher compared with the olfactory system. Subordination of olfactory responses by photic stimuli should be considered in the design of strategies aimed at management of such insects.

  17. Valence of physical stimuli, not housing conditions, affects behaviour and frontal cortical brain activity in sheep.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vögeli, Sabine; Lutz, Janika; Wolf, Martin; Wechsler, Beat; Gygax, Lorenz

    2014-07-01

    Modulation of short-term emotions by long-term mood is little understood but relevant to understand the affective system and of importance in respect to animal welfare: a negative mood might taint experiences, whilst a positive mood might alleviate single negative events. To induce different mood states in sheep housing conditions were varied. Fourteen ewes were group-housed in an unpredictable, stimulus-poor and 15 ewes in a predictable, stimulus-rich environment. Sheep were tested individually for mood in a behavioural cognitive bias paradigm. Also, their reactions to three physical stimuli thought to differ in their perceived valence were observed (negative: pricking, intermediate: slight pressure, positive: kneading). General behaviour, activity, ear movements and positions, and haemodynamic changes in the cortical brain were recorded during stimulations. Generalised mixed-effects models and model probabilities based on the BIC (Bayesian information criterion) were used. Only weak evidence for mood difference was found. Sheep from the unpredictable, stimulus-poor housing condition had a somewhat more negative cognitive bias, showed slightly more aversive behaviour, were slightly more active and moved their ears somewhat more. Sheep most clearly differentiated the negative from the intermediate and positive stimulus in that they exhibited more aversive behaviour, less nibbling, were more active, showed more ear movements, more forward ear postures, fewer backward ear postures, and a stronger decrease in deoxyhaemoglobin when subjected to the negative stimulus. In conclusion, sheep reacted towards stimuli according to their presumed valence but their mood was not strongly influenced by housing conditions. Therefore, behavioural reactions and cortical brain activity towards the stimuli were hardly modulated by housing conditions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Brain processing of visual sexual stimuli in healthy men: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mouras, Harold; Stoléru, Serge; Bittoun, Jacques; Glutron, Dominique; Pélégrini-Issac, Mélanie; Paradis, Anne-Lise; Burnod, Yves

    2003-10-01

    The brain plays a central role in sexual motivation. To identify cerebral areas whose activation was correlated with sexual desire, eight healthy male volunteers were studied with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Visual stimuli were sexually stimulating photographs (S condition) and emotionally neutral photographs (N condition). Subjective responses pertaining to sexual desire were recorded after each condition. To image the entire brain, separate runs focused on the upper and the lower parts of the brain. Statistical Parametric Mapping was used for data analysis. Subjective ratings confirmed that sexual pictures effectively induced sexual arousal. In the S condition compared to the N condition, a group analysis conducted on the upper part of the brain demonstrated an increased signal in the parietal lobes (superior parietal lobules, left intraparietal sulcus, left inferior parietal lobule, and right postcentral gyrus), the right parietooccipital sulcus, the left superior occipital gyrus, and the precentral gyri. In addition, a decreased signal was recorded in the right posterior cingulate gyrus and the left precuneus. In individual analyses conducted on the lower part of the brain, an increased signal was found in the right and/or left middle occipital gyrus in seven subjects, and in the right and/or left fusiform gyrus in six subjects. In conclusion, fMRI allows to identify brain responses to visual sexual stimuli. Among activated regions in the S condition, parietal areas are known to be involved in attentional processes directed toward motivationally relevant stimuli, while frontal premotor areas have been implicated in motor preparation and motor imagery. Further work is needed to identify those specific features of the neural responses that distinguish sexual desire from other emotional and motivational states.

  19. The Role of Inhibition in Avoiding Distraction by Salient Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaspelin, Nicholas; Luck, Steven J

    2018-01-01

    Researchers have long debated whether salient stimuli can involuntarily 'capture' visual attention. We review here evidence for a recently discovered inhibitory mechanism that may help to resolve this debate. This evidence suggests that salient stimuli naturally attempt to capture attention, but capture can be avoided if the salient stimulus is suppressed before it captures attention. Importantly, the suppression process can be more or less effective as a result of changing task demands or lapses in cognitive control. Converging evidence for the existence of this suppression mechanism comes from multiple sources, including psychophysics, eye-tracking, and event-related potentials (ERPs). We conclude that the evidence for suppression is strong, but future research will need to explore the nature and limits of this mechanism. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Stimuli-responsive hydrogels in drug delivery and tissue engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sood, Nikhil; Bhardwaj, Ankur; Mehta, Shuchi; Mehta, Abhinav

    2016-01-01

    Hydrogels are the three-dimensional network structures obtained from a class of synthetic or natural polymers which can absorb and retain a significant amount of water. Hydrogels are one of the most studied classes of polymer-based controlled drug release. These have attracted considerable attention in biochemical and biomedical fields because of their characteristics, such as swelling in aqueous medium, biocompatibility, pH and temperature sensitivity or sensitivity towards other stimuli, which can be utilized for their controlled zero-order release. The hydrogels are expected to explore new generation of self-regulated delivery system having a wide array of desirable properties. This review highlights the exciting opportunities and challenges in the area of hydrogels. Here, we review different literatures on stimuli-sensitive hydrogels, such as role of temperature, electric potential, pH and ionic strength to control the release of drug from hydrogels.

  1. Neural activation toward erotic stimuli in homosexual and heterosexual males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kagerer, Sabine; Klucken, Tim; Wehrum, Sina; Zimmermann, Mark; Schienle, Anne; Walter, Bertram; Vaitl, Dieter; Stark, Rudolf

    2011-11-01

    Studies investigating sexual arousal exist, yet there are diverging findings on the underlying neural mechanisms with regard to sexual orientation. Moreover, sexual arousal effects have often been confounded with general arousal effects. Hence, it is still unclear which structures underlie the sexual arousal response in homosexual and heterosexual men. Neural activity and subjective responses were investigated in order to disentangle sexual from general arousal. Considering sexual orientation, differential and conjoint neural activations were of interest. The functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study focused on the neural networks involved in the processing of sexual stimuli in 21 male participants (11 homosexual, 10 heterosexual). Both groups viewed pictures with erotic content as well as aversive and neutral stimuli. The erotic pictures were subdivided into three categories (most sexually arousing, least sexually arousing, and rest) based on the individual subjective ratings of each participant. Blood oxygen level-dependent responses measured by fMRI and subjective ratings. A conjunction analysis revealed conjoint neural activation related to sexual arousal in thalamus, hypothalamus, occipital cortex, and nucleus accumbens. Increased insula, amygdala, and anterior cingulate gyrus activation could be linked to general arousal. Group differences emerged neither when viewing the most sexually arousing pictures compared with highly arousing aversive pictures nor compared with neutral pictures. Results suggest that a widespread neural network is activated by highly sexually arousing visual stimuli. A partly distinct network of structures underlies sexual and general arousal effects. The processing of preferred, highly sexually arousing stimuli recruited similar structures in homosexual and heterosexual males. © 2011 International Society for Sexual Medicine.

  2. Feedback and feedforward control of frequency tuning to naturalistic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chacron, Maurice J; Maler, Leonard; Bastian, Joseph

    2005-06-08

    Sensory neurons must respond to a wide variety of natural stimuli that can have very different spatiotemporal characteristics. Optimal responsiveness to subsets of these stimuli can be achieved by devoting specialized neural circuitry to different stimulus categories, or, alternatively, this circuitry can be modulated or tuned to optimize responsiveness to current stimulus conditions. This study explores the mechanisms that enable neurons within the initial processing station of the electrosensory system of weakly electric fish to shift their tuning properties based on the spatial extent of the stimulus. These neurons are tuned to low frequencies when the stimulus is restricted to a small region within the receptive field center but are tuned to higher frequencies when the stimulus impinges on large regions of the sensory epithelium. Through a combination of modeling and in vivo electrophysiology, we reveal the respective contributions of the filtering characteristics of extended dendritic structures and feedback circuitry to this shift in tuning. Our results show that low-frequency tuning can result from the cable properties of an extended dendrite that conveys receptor-afferent information to the cell body. The shift from low- to high-frequency tuning, seen in response to spatially extensive stimuli, results from increased wide-band input attributable to activation of larger populations of receptor afferents, as well as the activation of parallel fiber feedback from the cerebellum. This feedback provides a cancellation signal with low-pass characteristics that selectively attenuates low-frequency responsiveness. Thus, with spatially extensive stimuli, these cells preferentially respond to the higher-frequency components of the receptor-afferent input.

  3. Autobiographical memories of young adults elicited by positive musical stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Gonçalves, Ana Margarida Silva

    2015-01-01

    Dissertação de mestrado integrado em Psicologia Studies on autobiographical memories have shown the presence of three main components: childhood amnesia, recency effect and reminiscence bump (Rubin, 1986). Previous research suggests that autobiographical memories elicited by positive stimuli are associated with highly, specific and generally pleasant episodes (Krumhansl & Zupnick, 2013). Music has an important and highly emotional and social role in individual’s lives. The p...

  4. Exogenous (automatic) attention to emotional stimuli: a review

    OpenAIRE

    Carretié, Luis

    2014-01-01

    Current knowledge on the architecture of exogenous attention (also called automatic, bottom-up, or stimulus-driven attention, among other terms) has been mainly obtained from studies employing neutral, anodyne stimuli. Since, from an evolutionary perspective, exogenous attention can be understood as an adaptive tool for rapidly detecting salient events, reorienting processing resources to them, and enhancing processing mechanisms, emotional events (which are, by definition, salient for the in...

  5. Brain response to visual sexual stimuli in homosexual pedophiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiffer, Boris; Krueger, Tillmann; Paul, Thomas; de Greiff, Armin; Forsting, Michael; Leygraf, Norbert; Schedlowski, Manfred; Gizewski, Elke

    2008-01-01

    The neurobiological mechanisms of deviant sexual preferences such as pedophilia are largely unknown. The objective of this study was to analyze whether brain activation patterns of homosexual pedophiles differed from those of a nonpedophile homosexual control group during visual sexual stimulation. A consecutive sample of 11 pedophile forensic inpatients exclusively attracted to boys and 12 age-matched homosexual control participants from a comparable socioeconomic stratum underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging during a visual sexual stimulation procedure that used sexually stimulating and emotionally neutral photographs. Sexual arousal was assessed according to a subjective rating scale. In contrast to sexually neutral pictures, in both groups sexually arousing pictures having both homosexual and pedophile content activated brain areas known to be involved in processing visual stimuli containing emotional content, including the occipitotemporal and prefrontal cortices. However, during presentation of the respective sexual stimuli, the thalamus, globus pallidus and striatum, which correspond to the key areas of the brain involved in sexual arousal and behaviour, showed significant activation in pedophiles, but not in control subjects. Central processing of visual sexual stimuli in homosexual pedophiles seems to be comparable to that in nonpedophile control subjects. However, compared with homosexual control subjects, activation patterns in pedophiles refer more strongly to subcortical regions, which have previously been discussed in the context of processing reward signals and also play an important role in addictive and stimulus-controlled behaviour. Thus future studies should further elucidate the specificity of these brain regions for the processing of sexual stimuli in pedophilia and should address the generally weaker activation pattern in homosexual men.

  6. Neural correlates of quality during perception of audiovisual stimuli

    CERN Document Server

    Arndt, Sebastian

    2016-01-01

    This book presents a new approach to examining perceived quality of audiovisual sequences. It uses electroencephalography to understand how exactly user quality judgments are formed within a test participant, and what might be the physiologically-based implications when being exposed to lower quality media. The book redefines experimental paradigms of using EEG in the area of quality assessment so that they better suit the requirements of standard subjective quality testings. Therefore, experimental protocols and stimuli are adjusted accordingly. .

  7. Afferent activity to necklace glomeruli is dependent on external stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Munger Steven D

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The main olfactory epithelium (MOE is a complex organ containing several functionally distinct subpopulations of sensory neurons. One such subpopulation is distinguished by its expression of the guanylyl cyclase GC-D. The axons of GC-D-expressing (GC-D+ neurons innervate 9–15 "necklace" glomeruli encircling the caudal main olfactory bulb (MOB. Chemosensory stimuli for GC-D+ neurons include two natriuretic peptides, uroguanylin and guanylin, and CO2. However, the biologically-relevant source of these chemostimuli is unclear: uroguanylin is both excreted in urine, a rich source of olfactory stimuli for rodents, and expressed in human nasal epithelium; CO2 is present in both inspired and expired air. Findings To determine whether the principal source of chemostimuli for GC-D+ neurons is external or internal to the nose, we assessed the consequences of removing external chemostimuli for afferent activity to the necklace glomeruli. To do so, we performed unilateral naris occlusions in Gucy2d-Mapt-lacZ +/- mice [which express a β-galactosidase (β-gal reporter specifically in GC-D+ neurons] followed by immunohistochemistry for β-gal and a glomerular marker of afferent activity, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH. We observed a dramatic decrease in TH immunostaining, consistent with reduced or absent afferent activity, in both necklace and non-necklace glomeruli ipsilateral to the occluded naris. Conclusion Like other MOB glomeruli, necklace glomeruli exhibit a large decrease in afferent activity upon removal of external stimuli. Thus, we conclude that activity in GC-D+ neurons, which specifically innervate necklace glomeruli, is not dependent on internal stimuli. Instead, GC-D+ neurons, like other OSNs in the MOE, primarily sense the external world.

  8. Endogenous sequential cortical activity evoked by visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrillo-Reid, Luis; Miller, Jae-Eun Kang; Hamm, Jordan P; Jackson, Jesse; Yuste, Rafael

    2015-06-10

    Although the functional properties of individual neurons in primary visual cortex have been studied intensely, little is known about how neuronal groups could encode changing visual stimuli using temporal activity patterns. To explore this, we used in vivo two-photon calcium imaging to record the activity of neuronal populations in primary visual cortex of awake mice in the presence and absence of visual stimulation. Multidimensional analysis of the network activity allowed us to identify neuronal ensembles defined as groups of cells firing in synchrony. These synchronous groups of neurons were themselves activated in sequential temporal patterns, which repeated at much higher proportions than chance and were triggered by specific visual stimuli such as natural visual scenes. Interestingly, sequential patterns were also present in recordings of spontaneous activity without any sensory stimulation and were accompanied by precise firing sequences at the single-cell level. Moreover, intrinsic dynamics could be used to predict the occurrence of future neuronal ensembles. Our data demonstrate that visual stimuli recruit similar sequential patterns to the ones observed spontaneously, consistent with the hypothesis that already existing Hebbian cell assemblies firing in predefined temporal sequences could be the microcircuit substrate that encodes visual percepts changing in time. Copyright © 2015 Carrillo-Reid et al.

  9. Dynamism of Stimuli-Responsive Nanohybrids: Environmental Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime Plazas-Tuttle

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Nanomaterial science and design have shifted from generating single passive nanoparticles to more complex and adaptive multi-component nanohybrids. These adaptive nanohybrids (ANHs are designed to simultaneously perform multiple functions, while actively responding to the surrounding environment. ANHs are engineered for use as drug delivery carriers, in tissue-engineered templates and scaffolds, adaptive clothing, smart surface coatings, electrical switches and in platforms for diversified functional applications. Such ANHs are composed of carbonaceous, metallic or polymeric materials with stimuli-responsive soft-layer coatings that enable them to perform such switchable functions. Since ANHs are engineered to dynamically transform under different exposure environments, evaluating their environmental behavior will likely require new approaches. Literature on polymer science has established a knowledge core on stimuli-responsive materials. However, translation of such knowledge to environmental health and safety (EHS of these ANHs has not yet been realized. It is critical to investigate and categorize the potential hazards of ANHs, because exposure in an unintended or shifting environment could present uncertainty in EHS. This article presents a perspective on EHS evaluation of ANHs, proposes a principle to facilitate their identification for environmental evaluation, outlines a stimuli-based classification for ANHs and discusses emerging properties and dynamic aspects for systematic EHS evaluation.

  10. Hemispheric specialization in dogs for processing different acoustic stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello Siniscalchi

    Full Text Available Considerable experimental evidence shows that functional cerebral asymmetries are widespread in animals. Activity of the right cerebral hemisphere has been associated with responses to novel stimuli and the expression of intense emotions, such as aggression, escape behaviour and fear. The left hemisphere uses learned patterns and responds to familiar stimuli. Although such lateralization has been studied mainly for visual responses, there is evidence in primates that auditory perception is lateralized and that vocal communication depends on differential processing by the hemispheres. The aim of the present work was to investigate whether dogs use different hemispheres to process different acoustic stimuli by presenting them with playbacks of a thunderstorm and their species-typical vocalizations. The results revealed that dogs usually process their species-typical vocalizations using the left hemisphere and the thunderstorm sounds using the right hemisphere. Nevertheless, conspecific vocalizations are not always processed by the left hemisphere, since the right hemisphere is used for processing vocalizations when they elicit intense emotion, including fear. These findings suggest that the specialisation of the left hemisphere for intraspecific communication is more ancient that previously thought, and so is specialisation of the right hemisphere for intense emotions.

  11. Reward modulates oculomotor competition between differently valued stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucker, Berno; Silvis, Jeroen D; Donk, Mieke; Theeuwes, Jan

    2015-03-01

    The present work explored the effects of reward in the well-known global effect paradigm in which two objects appear simultaneously in close spatial proximity. The experiment consisted of three phases (i) a pre-training phase that served as a baseline, (ii) a reward-training phase to associate differently colored stimuli with high, low and no reward value, and (iii) a post-training phase in which rewards were no longer delivered, to examine whether objects previously associated with higher reward value attracted the eyes more strongly than those associated with low or no reward value. Unlike previous reward studies, the differently valued objects directly competed with each other on the same trial. The results showed that initially eye movements were not biased towards any particular stimulus, while in the reward-training phase, eye movements started to land progressively closer towards stimuli that were associated with a high reward value. Even though rewards were no longer delivered, this bias remained robustly present in the post-training phase. A time course analysis showed that the effect of reward was present for the fastest saccades (around 170 ms) and increased with increasing latency. Although strategic effects for slower saccades cannot be ruled out, we suggest that fast oculomotor responses became habituated and were no longer under strategic attentional control. Together the results imply that reward affects oculomotor competition in favor of stimuli previously associated high reward, when multiple reward associated objects compete for selection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Attention modulates the dorsal striatum response to love stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeslag, Sandra J E; van der Veen, Frederik M; Röder, Christian H

    2014-02-01

    In previous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies concerning romantic love, several brain regions including the caudate and putamen have consistently been found to be more responsive to beloved-related than control stimuli. In those studies, infatuated individuals were typically instructed to passively view the stimuli or to think of the viewed person. In the current study, we examined how the instruction to attend to, or ignore the beloved modulates the response of these brain areas. Infatuated individuals performed an oddball task in which pictures of their beloved and friend served as targets and distractors. The dorsal striatum showed greater activation for the beloved than friend, but only when they were targets. The dorsal striatum actually tended to show less activation for the beloved than the friend when they were distractors. The longer the love and relationship duration, the smaller the response of the dorsal striatum to beloved-distractor stimuli was. We interpret our findings in terms of reinforcement learning. By virtue of using a cognitive task with a full factorial design, we show that the dorsal striatum is not activated by beloved-related information per se, but only by beloved-related information that is attended. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Differences in Swallowing between High and Low Concentration Taste Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Nagy

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Taste is a property that is thought to potentially modulate swallowing behavior. Whether such effects depend on taste, intensity remains unclear. This study explored differences in the amplitudes of tongue-palate pressures in swallowing as a function of taste stimulus concentration. Tongue-palate pressures were collected in 80 healthy women, in two age groups (under 40, over 60, stratified by genetic taste status (nontasters, supertasters. Liquids with different taste qualities (sweet, sour, salty, and bitter were presented in high and low concentrations. General labeled magnitude scale ratings captured perceived taste intensity and liking/disliking of the test liquids. Path analysis explored whether factors of taste, concentration, age group, and/or genetic taste status impacted: (1 perceived intensity; (2 palatability; and (3 swallowing pressures. Higher ratings of perceived intensity were found in supertasters and with higher concentrations, which were more liked/disliked than lower concentrations. Sweet stimuli were more palatable than sour, salty, or bitter stimuli. Higher concentrations elicited stronger tongue-palate pressures independently and in association with intensity ratings. The perceived intensity of a taste stimulus varies as a function of stimulus concentration, taste quality, participant age, and genetic taste status and influences swallowing pressure amplitudes. High-concentration salty and sour stimuli elicit the greatest tongue-palate pressures.

  14. The Commonality of Loss Aversion across Procedures and Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Byoung W.; Gilman, Jodi M.; Kuster, John K.; Blood, Anne J.; Kuhnen, Camelia M.

    2015-01-01

    Individuals tend to give losses approximately 2-fold the weight that they give gains. Such approximations of loss aversion (LA) are almost always measured in the stimulus domain of money, rather than objects or pictures. Recent work on preference-based decision-making with a schedule-less keypress task (relative preference theory, RPT) has provided a mathematical formulation for LA similar to that in prospect theory (PT), but makes no parametric assumptions in the computation of LA, uses a variable tied to communication theory (i.e., the Shannon entropy or information), and works readily with non-monetary stimuli. We evaluated if these distinct frameworks described similar LA in healthy subjects, and found that LA during the anticipation phase of the PT-based task correlated significantly with LA related to the RPT-based task. Given the ease with which non-monetary stimuli can be used on the Internet, or in animal studies, these findings open an extensive range of applications for the study of loss aversion. Furthermore, the emergence of methodology that can be used to measure preference for both social stimuli and money brings a common framework to the evaluation of preference in both social psychology and behavioral economics. PMID:26394306

  15. The Commonality of Loss Aversion across Procedures and Stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sang Lee

    Full Text Available Individuals tend to give losses approximately 2-fold the weight that they give gains. Such approximations of loss aversion (LA are almost always measured in the stimulus domain of money, rather than objects or pictures. Recent work on preference-based decision-making with a schedule-less keypress task (relative preference theory, RPT has provided a mathematical formulation for LA similar to that in prospect theory (PT, but makes no parametric assumptions in the computation of LA, uses a variable tied to communication theory (i.e., the Shannon entropy or information, and works readily with non-monetary stimuli. We evaluated if these distinct frameworks described similar LA in healthy subjects, and found that LA during the anticipation phase of the PT-based task correlated significantly with LA related to the RPT-based task. Given the ease with which non-monetary stimuli can be used on the Internet, or in animal studies, these findings open an extensive range of applications for the study of loss aversion. Furthermore, the emergence of methodology that can be used to measure preference for both social stimuli and money brings a common framework to the evaluation of preference in both social psychology and behavioral economics.

  16. Stimuli-responsive magnetic particles for biomedical applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medeiros, S F; Santos, A M; Fessi, H; Elaissari, A

    2011-01-17

    In recent years, magnetic nanoparticles have been studied due to their potential applications as magnetic carriers in biomedical area. These materials have been increasingly exploited as efficient delivery vectors, leading to opportunities of use as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) agents, mediators of hyperthermia cancer treatment and in targeted therapies. Much attention has been also focused on "smart" polymers, which are able to respond to environmental changes, such as changes in the temperature and pH. In this context, this article reviews the state-of-the art in stimuli-responsive magnetic systems for biomedical applications. The paper describes different types of stimuli-sensitive systems, mainly temperature- and pH sensitive polymers, the combination of this characteristic with magnetic properties and, finally, it gives an account of their preparation methods. The article also discusses the main in vivo biomedical applications of such materials. A survey of the recent literature on various stimuli-responsive magnetic gels in biomedical applications is also included. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. The Commonality of Loss Aversion across Procedures and Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sang; Lee, Myung J; Kim, Byoung W; Gilman, Jodi M; Kuster, John K; Blood, Anne J; Kuhnen, Camelia M; Breiter, Hans C

    2015-01-01

    Individuals tend to give losses approximately 2-fold the weight that they give gains. Such approximations of loss aversion (LA) are almost always measured in the stimulus domain of money, rather than objects or pictures. Recent work on preference-based decision-making with a schedule-less keypress task (relative preference theory, RPT) has provided a mathematical formulation for LA similar to that in prospect theory (PT), but makes no parametric assumptions in the computation of LA, uses a variable tied to communication theory (i.e., the Shannon entropy or information), and works readily with non-monetary stimuli. We evaluated if these distinct frameworks described similar LA in healthy subjects, and found that LA during the anticipation phase of the PT-based task correlated significantly with LA related to the RPT-based task. Given the ease with which non-monetary stimuli can be used on the Internet, or in animal studies, these findings open an extensive range of applications for the study of loss aversion. Furthermore, the emergence of methodology that can be used to measure preference for both social stimuli and money brings a common framework to the evaluation of preference in both social psychology and behavioral economics.

  18. The role of pulse shape in motor cortex transcranial magnetic stimulation using full-sine stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Delvendahl

    Full Text Available A full-sine (biphasic pulse waveform is most commonly used for repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS, but little is known about how variations in duration or amplitude of distinct pulse segments influence the effectiveness of a single TMS pulse to elicit a corticomotor response. Using a novel TMS device, we systematically varied the configuration of full-sine pulses to assess the impact of configuration changes on resting motor threshold (RMT as measure of stimulation effectiveness with single-pulse TMS of the non-dominant motor hand area (M1. In young healthy volunteers, we (i compared monophasic, half-sine, and full-sine pulses, (ii applied two-segment pulses consisting of two identical half-sines, and (iii manipulated amplitude, duration, and current direction of the first or second full-sine pulse half-segments. RMT was significantly higher using half-sine or monophasic pulses compared with full-sine. Pulses combining two half-sines of identical polarity and duration were also characterized by higher RMT than full-sine stimuli resulting. For full-sine stimuli, decreasing the amplitude of the half-segment inducing posterior-anterior oriented current in M1 resulted in considerably higher RMT, whereas varying the amplitude of the half-segment inducing anterior-posterior current had a smaller effect. These findings provide direct experimental evidence that the pulse segment inducing a posterior-anterior directed current in M1 contributes most to corticospinal pathway excitation. Preferential excitation of neuronal target cells in the posterior-anterior segment or targeting of different neuronal structures by the two half-segments can explain this result. Thus, our findings help understanding the mechanisms of neural stimulation by full-sine TMS.

  19. Extracellular microvesicle production by human eosinophils activated by “inflammatory” stimuli

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    Praveen Akuthota

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A key function of human eosinophils is to secrete cytokines, chemokines and cationic proteins, trafficking and releasing these mediators for roles in inflammation and other immune responses. Eosinophil activation leads to secretion of pre-synthesized granule-stored mediators through different mechanisms, but the ability of eosinophils to secrete extracellular vesicles (EVs, very small vesicles with preserved membrane topology, is still poorly understood. In the present work, we sought to identify and characterize EVs released from human eosinophils during different conditions: after a culturing period or after isolation and stimulation with inflammatory stimuli, which are known to induce eosinophil activation and secretion: CCL11 (eotaxin-1 and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α. EV production was investigated by nanoscale flow cytometry, conventional transmission electron microscopy (TEM and pre-embedding immunonanogold EM. The tetraspanins CD63 and CD9 were used as EV biomarkers for both flow cytometry and ultrastructural immunolabeling. Nanoscale flow cytometry showed that human eosinophils produce EVs in culture and that a population of EVs expressed detectable CD9, while CD63 was not consistently detected. When eosinophils were stimulated immediately after isolation and analyzed by TEM, EVs were clearly identified as microvesicles (MVsoutwardly budding off the plasma membrane. Both CCL11 and TNF-α induced significant increases of MVs compared to unstimulated cells.TNF-α induced amplified release of MVs more than CCL11. Eosinophil MV diameters varied from 20-1000 nm. Immunonanogold EM revealed clear immunolabeling for CD63 and CD9 on eosinophil MVs, although not all MVs were labeled. Altogether, we identified, for the first time, that human eosinophils secrete MVs and that this production increases in response to inflammatory stimuli. This is important to understand the complex secretory activities of eosinophils underlying immune

  20. Effect of Sertraline on Current-Source Distribution of the High Beta Frequency Band: Analysis of Electroencephalography under Audiovisual Erotic Stimuli in Healthy, Right-Handed Males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Seung Hyun; Hyun, Jae Seog; Kwon, Oh-Young

    2010-08-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the cerebral changes in high beta frequency oscillations (22-30 Hz) induced by sertraline and by audiovisual erotic stimuli in healthy adult males. Scalp electroencephalographies (EEGs) were conducted twice in 11 healthy, right-handed males, once before sertraline intake and again 4 hours thereafter. The EEGs included four sessions recorded sequentially while the subjects were resting, watching a music video, resting, and watching an erotic video for 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes, respectively. We performed frequency-domain analysis using the EEGs with a distributed model of current-source analysis. The statistical nonparametric maps were obtained from the sessions of watching erotic and music videos (perotic stimuli decreased the current-source density of the high beta frequency band in the middle frontal gyrus, the precentral gyrus, the postcentral gyrus, and the supramarginal gyrus of the left cerebral hemisphere in the baseline EEGs taken before sertraline intake (perotic stimuli did not induce any changes in current-source distribution of the brain 4 hours after sertraline intake. It is speculated that erotic stimuli may decrease the function of the middle frontal gyrus, the precentral gyrus, the postcentral gyrus, and the supramarginal gyrus of the left cerebral hemisphere in healthy adult males. This change may debase the inhibitory control of the brain against erotic stimuli. Sertraline may reduce the decrement in inhibitory control.

  1. Development of degradable renewable polymers and stimuli-responsive nanocomposites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eyiler, Ersan

    The overall goal of this research was to explore new living radical polymerization methods and the blending of renewable polymers. Towards this latter goal, polylactic acid (PLA) was blended with a new renewable polymer, poly(trimethylene-malonate) (PTM), with the aim of improving mechanical properties, imparting faster degradation, and examining the relationship between degradation and mechanical properties. Blend films of PLA and PTM with various ratios (5, 10, and 20 wt %) were cast from chloroform. Partially miscible blends exhibited Young's modulus and elongation-to-break values that significantly extend PLA's usefulness. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) data showed that incorporation of 10 wt% PTM into PLA matrix exhibited a Young's modulus of 4.61 GPa, which is significantly higher than that of neat PLA (1.69 GPa). The second part of the bioplastics study involved a one-week hydrolytic degradation study of PTM and another new bioplastic, poly(trimethylene itaconate) (PTI) using DI water (pH 5.4) at room temperature, and the effects of degradation on crystallinity and mechanical properties of these films were examined by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and AFM. PTI showed an increase in crystallinity with degradation, which was attributed to predominately degradation of free amorphous regions. Depending on the crystallinity, the elastic modulus increased at first, and decreased slightly. Both bulk and surface-tethered stimuli-responsive polymers were studied on amine functionalized magnetite (Fe3O4) nanoparticles. Stimuli-responsive polymers studied, including poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM), poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA), and poly(itaconic acid) (PIA), were grafted via surface-initiated aqueous atom transfer radical polymerization (SI-ATRP). Both Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) spectroscopies showed the progression of the grafting. The change in particle size as a

  2. Thermal facial reactivity patterns predict social categorization bias triggered by unconscious and conscious emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponsi, Giorgia; Panasiti, Maria Serena; Rizza, Giulia; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2017-08-30

    Members of highly social species decode, interpret, and react to the emotion of a conspecific depending on whether the other belongs to the same (ingroup) or different (outgroup) social group. While studies indicate that consciously perceived emotional stimuli drive social categorization, information about how implicit emotional stimuli and specific physiological signatures affect social categorization is lacking. We addressed this issue by exploring whether subliminal and supraliminal affective priming can influence the categorization of neutral faces as ingroup versus outgroup. Functional infrared thermal imaging was used to investigate whether the effect of affective priming on the categorization decision was moderated by the activation of the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). During the subliminal condition, we found that stronger SNS activation after positive or negative affective primes induced ingroup and outgroup face categorization, respectively. The exact opposite pattern (i.e. outgroup after positive and ingroup after negative primes) was observed in the supraliminal condition. We also found that misattribution effects were stronger in people with low emotional awareness, suggesting that this trait moderates how one recognizes SNS signals and employs them for unrelated decisions. Our results allow the remarkable implication that low-level affective reactions coupled with sympathetic activation may bias social categorization. © 2017 The Author(s).

  3. Effects of methylphenidate and MDMA on appraisal of erotic stimuli and intimate relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, Yasmin; Hysek, Cédric M; Preller, Katrin H; Bosch, Oliver G; Bilderbeck, Amy C; Rogers, Robert D; Quednow, Boris B; Liechti, Matthias E

    2015-01-01

    Methylphenidate mainly enhances dopamine neurotransmission whereas 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, "ecstasy") mainly enhances serotonin neurotransmission. However, both drugs also induce a weaker increase of cerebral noradrenaline exerting sympathomimetic properties. Dopaminergic psychostimulants are reported to increase sexual drive, while serotonergic drugs typically impair sexual arousal and functions. Additionally, serotonin has also been shown to modulate cognitive perception of romantic relationships. Whether methylphenidate or MDMA alter sexual arousal or cognitive appraisal of intimate relationships is not known. Thus, we evaluated effects of methylphenidate (40 mg) and MDMA (75 mg) on subjective sexual arousal by viewing erotic pictures and on perception of romantic relationships of unknown couples in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study in 30 healthy adults. Methylphenidate, but not MDMA, increased ratings of sexual arousal for explicit sexual stimuli. The participants also sought to increase the presentation time of implicit sexual stimuli by button press after methylphenidate treatment compared with placebo. Plasma levels of testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone were not associated with sexual arousal ratings. Neither MDMA nor methylphenidate altered appraisal of romantic relationships of others. The findings indicate that pharmacological stimulation of dopaminergic but not of serotonergic neurotransmission enhances sexual drive. Whether sexual perception is altered in subjects misusing methylphenidate e.g., for cognitive enhancement or as treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is of high interest and warrants further investigation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  4. Visual arts training is linked to flexible attention to local and global levels of visual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamberlain, Rebecca; Wagemans, Johan

    2015-10-01

    Observational drawing skill has been shown to be associated with the ability to focus on local visual details. It is unclear whether superior performance in local processing is indicative of the ability to attend to, and flexibly switch between, local and global levels of visual stimuli. It is also unknown whether these attentional enhancements remain specific to observational drawing skill or are a product of a wide range of artistic activities. The current study aimed to address these questions by testing if flexible visual processing predicts artistic group membership and observational drawing skill in a sample of first-year bachelor's degree art students (n=23) and non-art students (n=23). A pattern of local and global visual processing enhancements was found in relation to artistic group membership and drawing skill, with local processing ability found to be specifically related to individual differences in drawing skill. Enhanced global processing and more fluent switching between local and global levels of hierarchical stimuli predicted both drawing skill and artistic group membership, suggesting that these are beneficial attentional mechanisms for art-making in a range of domains. These findings support a top-down attentional model of artistic expertise and shed light on the domain specific and domain-general attentional enhancements induced by proficiency in the visual arts. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Switching neuronal state: optimal stimuli revealed using a stochastically-seeded gradient algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Joshua; Paydarfar, David

    2014-12-01

    Inducing a switch in neuronal state using energy optimal stimuli is relevant to a variety of problems in neuroscience. Analytical techniques from optimal control theory can identify such stimuli; however, solutions to the optimization problem using indirect variational approaches can be elusive in models that describe neuronal behavior. Here we develop and apply a direct gradient-based optimization algorithm to find stimulus waveforms that elicit a change in neuronal state while minimizing energy usage. We analyze standard models of neuronal behavior, the Hodgkin-Huxley and FitzHugh-Nagumo models, to show that the gradient-based algorithm: (1) enables automated exploration of a wide solution space, using stochastically generated initial waveforms that converge to multiple locally optimal solutions; and (2) finds optimal stimulus waveforms that achieve a physiological outcome condition, without a priori knowledge of the optimal terminal condition of all state variables. Analysis of biological systems using stochastically-seeded gradient methods can reveal salient dynamical mechanisms underlying the optimal control of system behavior. The gradient algorithm may also have practical applications in future work, for example, finding energy optimal waveforms for therapeutic neural stimulation that minimizes power usage and diminishes off-target effects and damage to neighboring tissue.

  6. Gaming to see: Action Video Gaming is associated with enhanced processing of masked stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carsten ePohl

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Recent research revealed that action video game players outperform non-players in a wide range of attentional, perceptual and cognitive tasks. Here we tested if expertise in action video games is related to differences regarding the potential of shortly presented stimuli to bias behaviour. In a response priming paradigm, participants classified four animal pictures functioning as targets as being smaller or larger than a reference frame. Before each target, one of the same four animal pictures was presented as a masked prime to influence participants’ responses in a congruent or incongruent way. Masked primes induced congruence effects, that is, faster responses for congruent compared to incongruent conditions, indicating processing of hardly visible primes. Results also suggested that action video game players showed a larger congruence effect than non-players for 20 ms primes, whereas there was no group difference for 60 ms primes. In addition, there was a tendency for action video game players to detect masked primes for some prime durations better than non-players. Thus, action video game expertise may be accompanied by faster and more efficient processing of shortly presented visual stimuli.

  7. Metalloproteinases and atherothrombosis: MMP-10 mediates vascular remodeling promoted by inflammatory stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Jose A; Orbe, Josune; Martinez de Lizarrondo, Sara; Calvayrac, Olivier; Rodriguez, Cristina; Martinez-Gonzalez, Jose; Paramo, Jose A

    2008-01-01

    Atherosclerosis is the common pathophysiological substrate of ischemic vascular diseases and their thrombotic complications. The unbalance between matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and their inhibitors (TIMPs) has been hypothesized to be involved in the growth, destabilization, and eventual rupture of atherosclerotic lesions. Different MMPs have been assigned relevant roles in the pathology of vascular diseases and MMP-10 (stromelysin-2) has been involved in vascular development and atherogenesis. This article examines the pathophysiological role of MMPs, particularly MMP-10, in the onset and progression of vascular diseases and their regulation by pro-inflammatory stimuli. MMP-10 over-expression has been shown to compromise vascular integrity and it has been associated with aortic aneurysms. MMP-10 is induced by C-reactive protein in endothelial cells, and it is over-expressed in atherosclerotic lesions. Additionally, higher MMP-10 serum levels are associated with inflammatory markers, increased carotid intima-media thickness and the presence of atherosclerotic plaques. We have cloned the promoter region of the MMP-10 gene and studied the effect of inflammatory stimuli on MMP-10 transcriptional regulation, providing evidences further supporting the involvement of MMP-10 in the pathophysiology of atherothrombosis.

  8. Gaming to see: action video gaming is associated with enhanced processing of masked stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohl, Carsten; Kunde, Wilfried; Ganz, Thomas; Conzelmann, Annette; Pauli, Paul; Kiesel, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Recent research revealed that action video game players outperform non-players in a wide range of attentional, perceptual and cognitive tasks. Here we tested if expertise in action video games is related to differences regarding the potential of shortly presented stimuli to bias behavior. In a response priming paradigm, participants classified four animal pictures functioning as targets as being smaller or larger than a reference frame. Before each target, one of the same four animal pictures was presented as a masked prime to influence participants' responses in a congruent or incongruent way. Masked primes induced congruence effects, that is, faster responses for congruent compared to incongruent conditions, indicating processing of hardly visible primes. Results also suggested that action video game players showed a larger congruence effect than non-players for 20 ms primes, whereas there was no group difference for 60 ms primes. In addition, there was a tendency for action video game players to detect masked primes for some prime durations better than non-players. Thus, action video game expertise may be accompanied by faster and more efficient processing of shortly presented visual stimuli.

  9. Hypotonic stimuli enhance proton-gated currents of acid-sensing ion channel-1b

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ugawa, Shinya; Ishida, Yusuke; Ueda, Takashi; Yu, Yong; Shimada, Shoichi

    2008-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are strong candidates for mammalian mechanoreceptors. We investigated whether mouse acid-sensing ion channel-1b (ASIC1b) is sensitive to mechanical stimuli using oocyte electrophysiology, because ASIC1b is located in the mechanosensory stereocilia of cochlear hair cells. Hypotonic stimuli that induced membrane stretch of oocytes evoked no significant current in ASIC1b-expressing oocytes at pH 7.5. However, acid (pH 4.0 or 5.0)-evoked currents in the oocytes were substantially enhanced by the hypotonicity, showing mechanosensitivity of ASIC1b and possible mechanogating of the channel in the presence of other components. Interestingly, the ASIC1b channel was permeable to K + (a principal charge carrier for cochlear sensory transduction) and the affinity of the channel for amiloride (IC 50 (inhibition constant) = approximately 48.3 μM) was quite similar to that described for the mouse hair cell mechanotransducer current. Taken together, these data raise the possibility that ASIC1b participates in cochlear mechanoelectrical transduction

  10. Dual stimuli responsive self-reporting material for chemical reservoir coating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Tae Hee; Song, Young Kyu; Park, Sun Hee; Park, Young Il; Noh, Seung Man; Kim, Jin Chul

    2018-03-01

    In this study, we introduce a novel dual stimuli responsive self-reporting thiol-epoxy thermoset (DSRTET) coatings which can detect both crack occurrence and pH variation. For crack detection, microcapsule containing tetraphenylethylene (TPE) which exhibits aggregation induced emission (AIE) effect was prepared via multi-step emulsion polymerization and dispersed in DSRTET coatings. For pH variation detection, commercial thymol blue as a pH indicator was added into the polymer matrix. The effect of microcapsule contents in DSRTET on their curing behavior, material properties, and crack sensitivity was characterized using an oscillatory rheology, rigid body pendulum test (RPT), nano-indentation test (NST), universal test machine (UTM) and scratch tester. It was revealed that crack sensitivity of DSRTET coatings was greatly influenced by material properties as well as microcapsule content. The color transition of DSRTET coatings in response to acid or base solution were quantitatively investigated using a multi-angle spectrophotometer after simple acid and base solution drop tests. The color of DSRTET coatings changed from a pale green to red for acidic solution and to blue for basic solution. Finally, The DSRTET used in this study was applied to laboratory scale chemical reservoirs in order to verify the potential as a dual stimuli response self-reporting coating which can detect both crack in coating material and chemical spill caused by the leakage or breakage of the reservoir part.

  11. Behavioural responses of the yellow emitting annelid Tomopteris helgolandica to photic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouveneaux, Anaïd; Gielen, Marie-Charlotte; Mallefet, Jérôme

    2018-05-01

    In contrast to most mesopelagic bioluminescent organisms specialised in the emission and reception of blue light, the planktonic annelid Tomopteris helgolandica produces yellow light. This unusual feature has long been suggested to serve for intraspecific communication. Yet, this virtually admitted hypothesis has never been tested. In this behavioural study of spectral colour sensitivity, we first present an illustrated repertoire of the postures and action patterns described by captive specimens. Then video tracking and motion analysis are used to quantify the behavioural responses of singled out worms to photic stimuli imitating intraspecific (yellow) or interspecific (blue) bioluminescent signals. We show the ability of T. helgolandica to react and to contrast its responses to bioluminescent-like blue and yellow light signals. In particular, the attractive effect of yellow light and the variation of angular velocity observed according to the pattern of yellow stimuli (flashes versus glows) support the intraspecific communication hypothesis. However, given the behavioural patterns of T. helgolandica, including mechanically induced light emission, the possibility that bioluminescence may be part of escape/defence responses to predation, should remain an open question. Copyright © 2018 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. The effect of opioid receptor blockade on the neural processing of thermal stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eszter D Schoell

    Full Text Available The endogenous opioid system represents one of the principal systems in the modulation of pain. This has been demonstrated in studies of placebo analgesia and stress-induced analgesia, where anti-nociceptive activity triggered by pain itself or by cognitive states is blocked by opioid antagonists. The aim of this study was to characterize the effect of opioid receptor blockade on the physiological processing of painful thermal stimulation in the absence of cognitive manipulation. We therefore measured BOLD (blood oxygen level dependent signal responses and intensity ratings to non-painful and painful thermal stimuli in a double-blind, cross-over design using the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone. On the behavioral level, we observed an increase in intensity ratings under naloxone due mainly to a difference in the non-painful stimuli. On the neural level, painful thermal stimulation was associated with a negative BOLD signal within the pregenual anterior cingulate cortex, and this deactivation was abolished by naloxone.

  13. Do emotional stimuli enhance or impede recall relative to neutral stimuli? An investigation of two "false memory" tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monds, Lauren A; Paterson, Helen M; Kemp, Richard I

    2017-09-01

    Many eyewitness memory situations involve negative and distressing events; however, many studies investigating "false memory" phenomena use neutral stimuli only. The aim of the present study was to determine how both the Deese-Roediger-McDermott (DRM) procedure and the Misinformation Effect Paradigm tasks were related to each other using distressing and neutral stimuli. Participants completed the DRM (with negative and neutral word lists) and viewed a distressing or neutral film. Misinformation for the film was introduced and memory was assessed. Film accuracy and misinformation susceptibility were found to be greater for those who viewed the distressing film relative to the neutral film. Accuracy responses on both tasks were related, however, susceptibility to the DRM illusion and Misinformation Effect were not. The misinformation findings support the Paradoxical Negative Emotion (PNE) hypothesis that negative stimuli will lead to remembering more accurate details but also greater likelihood of memory distortion. However, the PNE hypothesis was not supported for the DRM results. The findings also suggest that the DRM and Misinformation tasks are not equivalent and may have differences in underlying mechanisms. Future research should focus on more ecologically valid methods of assessing false memory.

  14. Contributions of the cerebellum to disturbed central processing of visceral stimuli in irritable bowel syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenberger, Christina; Thürling, Markus; Forsting, Michael; Elsenbruch, Sigrid; Timmann, Dagmar; Gizewski, Elke R

    2013-04-01

    There is evidence to support that the cerebellum contributes to the neural processing of both emotions and painful stimuli. This could be particularly relevant in conditions associated with chronic abdominal pain, such as the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which are often also characterized by affective disturbances. We aimed to test the hypothesis that in IBS, symptoms of anxiety and depression modulate brain activation during visceral stimulation within the cerebellum. We reanalyzed a previous data set from N = 15 female IBS patients and N = 12 healthy women with a specific focus on the cerebellum using advanced normalization methods. Rectal distension-induced brain activation was measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging using non-painful and painful rectal distensions. Symptoms of anxiety and depression, assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale, were correlated with cerebellar activation within IBS patients. Within IBS, depression scores were associated with non-painful distension-induced activation in the right cerebellum primarily in Crus II and lobule VIIIb, and additionally in Crus I. Depression scores were also associated with painful distension-induced activation predominantly in vermal lobule V with some extension to the intermediate cerebellum. Anxiety scores correlated significantly with non-painful induced activation in Crus II. Symptoms of anxiety and depression, which are frequently found in chronic pain conditions like IBS, modulate activation during visceral sensory signals not only in cortical and subcortical brain areas but also in the cerebellum.

  15. Perseverative instrumental and Pavlovian responding to conditioned stimuli in serotonin transporter knockout rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nonkes, L.J.P.; Homberg, J.R.

    2013-01-01

    Environmental stimuli can influence behavior via the process of Pavlovian conditioning. Recent genetic research suggests that some individuals are more sensitive to environmental stimuli for behavioral guidance than others. One important mediator of this effect is serotonin transporter (5-HTT)

  16. Intimate stimuli result in fronto-parietal activation changes in anorexia nervosa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Zutphen, L; Maier, S; Siep, N; Jacob, G A; Tüscher, O; van Elst, L Tebartz; Zeeck, A; Arntz, A; O'Connor, M-F; Stamm, H; Hudek, M; Joos, Andreas

    2018-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Intimacy is a key psychological problem in anorexia nervosa (AN). Empirical evidence, including neurobiological underpinnings, is however, scarce. OBJECTIVE: In this study, we evaluated various emotional stimuli including intimate stimuli experienced in patients with AN and non-patients,

  17. United we sense, divided we fail: context-driven perception of ambiguous visual stimuli.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klink, P.C.; van Wezel, R.J.A.; van Ee, R.

    2012-01-01

    Ambiguous visual stimuli provide the brain with sensory information that contains conflicting evidence for multiple mutually exclusive interpretations. Two distinct aspects of the phenomenological experience associated with viewing ambiguous visual stimuli are the apparent stability of perception

  18. United we sense, divided we fail: context-driven perception of ambiguous visual stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klink, P. C; van Wezel, Richard Jack Anton; van Ee, R.

    2012-01-01

    Ambiguous visual stimuli provide the brain with sensory information that contains conflicting evidence for multiple mutually exclusive interpretations. Two distinct aspects of the phenomenological experience associated with viewing ambiguous visual stimuli are the apparent stability of perception

  19. Interaction with Shc prevents aberrant Erk activation in the absence of extracellular stimuli

    KAUST Repository

    Suen, KinMan

    2013-05-01

    Control mechanisms that prevent aberrant signaling are necessary to maintain cellular homeostasis. We describe a new mechanism by which the adaptor protein Shc directly binds the MAP kinase Erk, thus preventing its activation in the absence of extracellular stimuli. The Shc-Erk complex restricts Erk nuclear translocation, restraining Erk-dependent transcription of genes, including those responsible for oncogenic growth. The complex forms through unique binding sites on both the Shc PTB domain and the N-terminal lobe of Erk. Upon receptor tyrosine kinase stimulation, a conformational change within Shc - induced through interaction with the phosphorylated receptor - releases Erk, allowing it to fulfill its role in signaling. Thus, in addition to its established role in promoting MAP kinase signaling in stimulated cells, Shc negatively regulates Erk activation in the absence of growth factors and thus could be considered a tumor suppressor in human cells. © 2013 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Interaction with Shc prevents aberrant Erk activation in the absence of extracellular stimuli

    KAUST Repository

    Suen, KinMan; Lin, Chichuan; George, Roger R.; Melo, Fernando A.; Biggs, Eleanor R.; Ahmed, Zamal; Drake, Melanie N.; Arur, Swathi; Arold, Stefan T.; Ladbury, John E S D

    2013-01-01

    Control mechanisms that prevent aberrant signaling are necessary to maintain cellular homeostasis. We describe a new mechanism by which the adaptor protein Shc directly binds the MAP kinase Erk, thus preventing its activation in the absence of extracellular stimuli. The Shc-Erk complex restricts Erk nuclear translocation, restraining Erk-dependent transcription of genes, including those responsible for oncogenic growth. The complex forms through unique binding sites on both the Shc PTB domain and the N-terminal lobe of Erk. Upon receptor tyrosine kinase stimulation, a conformational change within Shc - induced through interaction with the phosphorylated receptor - releases Erk, allowing it to fulfill its role in signaling. Thus, in addition to its established role in promoting MAP kinase signaling in stimulated cells, Shc negatively regulates Erk activation in the absence of growth factors and thus could be considered a tumor suppressor in human cells. © 2013 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. A dual-stimuli-responsive fluorescent switch ultrathin film

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhixiong; Liang, Ruizheng; Liu, Wendi; Yan, Dongpeng; Wei, Min

    2015-10-01

    Stimuli-responsive fluorescent switches have shown broad applications in optical devices, biological materials and intelligent responses. Herein, we describe the design and fabrication of a dual-stimuli-responsive fluorescent switch ultrathin film (UTF) via a three-step layer-by-layer (LBL) technique: (i) encapsulation of spiropyran (SP) within an amphiphilic block copolymer (PTBEM) to give the (SP@PTBEM) micelle; (ii) the mixture of riboflavin (Rf) and poly(styrene 4-sulfonate) (PSS) to enhance the adhesion ability of small molecules; (iii) assembly of negatively charged SP@PTBEM and Rf-PSS with cationic layered double hydroxide (LDH) nanoplatelets to obtain the (Rf-PSS/LDH/SP@PTBEM)n UTFs (n: bilayer number). The assembly process of the UTFs and their luminescence properties, as monitored by fluorescence spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), present a uniform and ordered layered structure with stepwise growth. The resulting Rf-PSS/LDH/SP@PTBEM UTF serves as a three-state switchable multicolor (green, yellow, and red) luminescent system based on stimulation from UV/Vis light and pH, with an acceptable reversibility. Therefore, this work provides a facile way to fabricate stimuli-responsive solid-state film switches with tunable-color luminescence, which have potential applications in the areas of displays, sensors, and rewritable optical memory and fluorescent logic devices.Stimuli-responsive fluorescent switches have shown broad applications in optical devices, biological materials and intelligent responses. Herein, we describe the design and fabrication of a dual-stimuli-responsive fluorescent switch ultrathin film (UTF) via a three-step layer-by-layer (LBL) technique: (i) encapsulation of spiropyran (SP) within an amphiphilic block copolymer (PTBEM) to give the (SP@PTBEM) micelle; (ii) the mixture of riboflavin (Rf) and poly(styrene 4-sulfonate) (PSS) to enhance the adhesion ability of small molecules; (iii) assembly of negatively charged SP

  2. Do Live versus Audio-Recorded Narrative Stimuli Influence Young Children's Narrative Comprehension and Retell Quality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young-Suk Grace

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The primary aim of the present study was to examine whether different ways of presenting narrative stimuli (i.e., live narrative stimuli versus audio-recorded narrative stimuli) influence children's performances on narrative comprehension and oral-retell quality. Method: Children in kindergarten (n = 54), second grade (n = 74), and fourth…

  3. Cognitive conflict increases processing of negative, task-irrelevant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ligeza, Tomasz S; Wyczesany, Miroslaw

    2017-10-01

    The detection of cognitive conflict is thought to trigger adjustments in executive control. It has been recently shown that cognitive conflict increases processing of stimuli that are relevant to the ongoing task and that these modulations are exerted by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). However, it is still unclear whether such control influences are unspecific and might also affect the processing of task-irrelevant stimuli. The aim of the study was to examine if cognitive conflict affects processing of neutral and negative, task-irrelevant pictures. Participants responded to congruent (non-conflict) or to incongruent (conflict-eliciting) trials of a modified flanker task. Each response was followed by a presentation of a neutral or negative picture. The late positive potential (LPP) in response to picture presentation was used to assess the level of picture processing after conflict vs non-conflict trials. Connectivity between the DLPFC and attentional and perceptual areas during picture presentation was analysed to check if the DLPFC might be a source of these modulations. ERP results showed an effect of cognitive conflict only on processing of negative pictures: LPP in response to negative pictures was increased after conflict trials, whereas LPP in response to neutral pictures remained unchanged. Cortical connectivity analysis showed that conflict trials intensified information flow from the DLPFC towards attentional and perceptual regions. Results suggest that cognitive conflict increases processing of task-irrelevant stimuli; however, they must display high biological salience. Increase in cognitive control exerted by the DLPFC over attentional and perceptual regions is a probable mechanism of the effect. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Impact of emotion on consciousness: positive stimuli enhance conscious reportability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristine Rømer Thomsen

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Emotion and reward have been proposed to be closely linked to conscious experience, but empirical data are lacking. The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC plays a central role in the hedonic dimension of conscious experience; thus potentially a key region in interactions between emotion and consciousness. Here we tested the impact of emotion on conscious experience, and directly investigated the role of the ACC. We used a masked paradigm that measures conscious reportability in terms of subjective confidence and objective accuracy in identifying the briefly presented stimulus in a forced-choice test. By manipulating the emotional valence (positive, neutral, negative and the presentation time (16 ms, 32 ms, 80 ms we measured the impact of these variables on conscious and subliminal (i.e. below threshold processing. First, we tested normal participants using face and word stimuli. Results showed that participants were more confident and accurate when consciously seeing happy versus sad/neutral faces and words. When stimuli were presented subliminally, we found no effect of emotion. To investigate the neural basis of this impact of emotion, we recorded local field potentials (LFPs directly in the ACC in a chronic pain patient. Behavioural findings were replicated: the patient was more confident and accurate when (consciously seeing happy versus sad faces, while no effect was seen in subliminal trials. Mirroring behavioural findings, we found significant differences in the LFPs after around 500 ms (lasting 30 ms in conscious trials between happy and sad faces, while no effect was found in subliminal trials. We thus demonstrate a striking impact of emotion on conscious experience, with positive emotional stimuli enhancing conscious reportability. In line with previous studies, the data indicate a key role of the ACC, but goes beyond earlier work by providing the first direct evidence of interaction between emotion and conscious experience in the human

  5. PENILAIAN PEDOFILIA MENGGUNAKAN RESPON HEMODINAMIK OTAK TERHADAP STIMULI SEKSUAL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuhelan Mahendran

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRAK Menilai secara akurat orientasi seksual seseorang sangat penting dalam melakukan penanganan terhadap pelaku kekerasan seksual pada anak. Phallometry adalah metode standar untuk mengidentifikasi orientasi seksual; tetapi, metode ini telah banyak dikritik oleh karena bersifat intrusif dan reliabilitasnya terbatas. Tujuan:Untuk mengevaluasi apakah pola respon spasial terhadap stimuli seksual yang ditandai oleh adanya perubahan blood oxygen level-dependent signal (BOLDmemfasilitasi proses identifikasi pedofilia. Desain:Selama dilakukan pemeriksaan magnetic resonance imaging fungsional (fMRI, ditampilkan gambar anak-anak dan dewasa tanpa busana dengan jenis kelamin sama atau berbeda terhadap sampel penelitian (kelompok pedofil dan kontrol. Kami mengkalkulasi perbedaan BOLDterhadap stimuli sexual anak-anak dan dewasa pada setiap sampel. Hasil foto dengan kontras kemudian dimasukkan sesuai dengan kelompoknya untuk dianalisis perbedaan pemetaan otak antara kelompok pedofil dan kontrol. Kami mengkalkulasi nilai ekspresi yang sesuai dengan hasil kelompok bagi setiap sampel. Nilai ekspresi tersebut dibedakan menjadi 2 algoritma klasifikasi: analisis Fisher linear discriminant dan analisis -nearest neighbor. Prosedur klasifikasi tersebut telah divalidasi silang menggunakan metode leave-one-out. Lokasi:Bagian Kedokteran Seksual, Fakultas Kedokteran Universitas Christian Albrechts di Kiel, Jerman. Sampel:Kami merekrut 24 sampel dengan pedofil yang memiliki ketertarikan seksual terhadap anak perempuan (n=11 atau laki-laki (n=13 pre pubertas dan 32 kontrol laki-laki sehat yang memiliki ketertarikan seksual terhadap wanita (n=18 atau pria (n=14 dewasa. Pengukuran luaran utama:Angka sensitivitasdan spesifisitas dari kedua algoritme klasifikasi. Hasil:Akurasi klasifikasi tertinggi dicapai dengan analisis diskriminan linear Fisher, yang menunjukkan akurasi rata-rata 95% (100% spesifisitas, 88% sensitivitas. Simpulan:Pola respon otak fungsional terhadap

  6. Neurophysiological responses to music and vibroacoustic stimuli in Rett syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergström-Isacsson, Märith; Lagerkvist, Bengt; Holck, Ulla; Gold, Christian

    2014-06-01

    People with Rett syndrome (RTT) have severe communicative difficulties. They have as well an immature brainstem that implies dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. Music plays an important role in their life, is often used as a motivating tool in a variety of situations and activities, and caregivers are often clear about people with RTTs favourites. The aim of this study was to investigate physiological and emotional responses related to six different musical stimuli in people with RTT. The study included 29 participants with RTT who were referred to the Swedish Rett Center for medical brainstem assessment during the period 2006-2007. 11 children with a typical developmental pattern were used as comparison. A repeated measures design was used, and physiological data were collected from a neurophysiological brainstem assessment. The continuous dependent variables measured were Cardiac Vagal Tone (CVT), Cardiac Sensitivity to Baroreflex (CSB), Mean Arterial Blood Pressure (MAP) and the Coefficient of Variation of Mean Arterial Blood Pressure (MAP-CV). These parameters were used to categorise brainstem responses as parasympathetic (calming) response, sympathetic (activating) response, arousal (alerting) response and unclear response. The results showed that all participants responded to the musical stimuli, but not always in the expected way. It was noticeable that both people with and without RTT responded with an arousal to all musical stimuli to begin with. Even though the initial expressions sometimes changed after some time due to poor control functions of their brainstem, the present results are consistent with the possibility that the RTT participants' normal responses to music are intact. These findings may explain why music is so important for individuals with RTT throughout life. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. [Responses of bat cochlear nucleus neurons to ultrasonic stimuli].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasil'ev, A G; Grigor'eva, T I

    1977-01-01

    The responses of cochlear nuclei single units in Vespertilionidae and Rhinolophidae were studied by means of ultrasound stimuli of different frequencies. Most neurons were found to have one or two complementary response areas with best frequencies equal to 1/2 and 1/3 of the highest one (which we regard as the basic best frequency). In Vespertilionidae which emit frequency-modulated signals some neurons have complementary areas with upper thresholds. The latency of responses do not correlate with the stimulus frequency. This suggests that there is no correlative reception of echosignals at this level of auditory system in bats.

  8. Stimuli-Responsive Polymer-Clay Nanocomposites under Electric Fields

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piao, Shang Hao; Kwon, Seung Hyuk; Choi, Hyoung Jin

    2016-01-01

    This short Feature Article reviews electric stimuli-responsive polymer/clay nanocomposites with respect to their fabrication, physical characteristics and electrorheological (ER) behaviors under applied electric fields when dispersed in oil. Their structural characteristics, morphological features and thermal degradation behavior were examined by X-ray diffraction pattern, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy, and thermogravimetric analysis, respectively. Particular focus is given to the electro-responsive ER characteristics of the polymer/clay nanocomposites in terms of the yield stress and viscoelastic properties along with their applications. PMID:28787852

  9. Neurophysiological responses to music and vibroacoustic stimuli in Rett syndrome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bergström-Isacsson, Märith; Lagerkvist, Bengt; Holck, Ulla

    2014-01-01

    People with Rett syndrome (RTT) have severe communicative difficulties. They have as well an immature brainstem that implies dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. Music plays an important role in their life, is often used as a motivating tool in a variety of situations and activities......, and caregivers are often clear about people with RTTs favourites. The aim of this study was to investigate physiological and emotional responses related to six different musical stimuli in people with RTT. The study included 29 participants with RTT who were referred to the Swedish Rett Center for medical...

  10. Encoding of natural and artificial stimuli in the auditory midbrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyzwa, Dominika

    How complex acoustic stimuli are encoded in the main center of convergence in the auditory midbrain is not clear. Here, the representation of neural spiking responses to natural and artificial sounds across this subcortical structure is investigated based on neurophysiological recordings from the mammalian midbrain. Neural and stimulus correlations of neuronal pairs are analyzed with respect to the neurons' distance, and responses to different natural communication sounds are discriminated. A model which includes linear and nonlinear neural response properties of this nucleus is presented and employed to predict temporal spiking responses to new sounds. Supported by BMBF Grant 01GQ0811.

  11. Attentional capture by social stimuli in young infants

    OpenAIRE

    Gluckman, Maxie; Johnson, Scott P.

    2013-01-01

    We investigated the possibility that a range of social stimuli capture the attention of 6-month-old infants when in competition with other non-face objects. Infants viewed a series of six-item arrays in which one target item was a face, body part, or animal as their eye movements were recorded. Stimulus arrays were also processed for relative salience of each item in terms of color, luminance, and amount of contour. Targets were rarely the most visually salient items in the arrays, yet inf...

  12. Intradermal administration of magnesium sulphate and magnesium chloride produces hypesthesia to mechanical but hyperalgesia to heat stimuli in humans

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    Ikemoto Tatsunori

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although magnesium ions (Mg2+ are known to display many similar features to other 2+ charged cations, they seem to have quite an important and unique role in biological settings, such as NMDA blocking effect. However, the role of Mg2+ in the neural transmission system has not been studied as sufficiently as calcium ions (Ca2+. To clarify the sensory effects of Mg2+ in peripheral nervous systems, sensory changes after intradermal injection of Mg2+ were studied in humans. Methods Magnesium sulphate, magnesium chloride and saline were injected into the skin of the anterior region of forearms in healthy volunteers and injection-induced irritating pain ("irritating pain", for short, tactile sensation, tactile pressure thresholds, pinch-pain changes and intolerable heat pain thresholds of the lesion were monitored. Results Flare formation was observed immediately after magnesium sulphate or magnesium chloride injection. We found that intradermal injections of magnesium sulphate and magnesium chloride transiently caused irritating pain, hypesthesia to noxious and innocuous mechanical stimulations, whereas secondary hyperalgesia due to mechanical stimuli was not observed. In contrast to mechanical stimuli, intolerable heat pain-evoking temperature was significantly decreased at the injection site. In addition to these results, spontaneous pain was immediately attenuated by local cooling. Conclusion Membrane-stabilizing effect and peripheral NMDA-blocking effect possibly produced magnesium-induced mechanical hypesthesia, and extracellular cation-induced sensitization of TRPV1 channels was thought to be the primary mechanism of magnesium-induced heat hyperalgesia.

  13. Neural responses to smoking stimuli are influenced by smokers' attitudes towards their own smoking behaviour.

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    Bastian Stippekohl

    Full Text Available An important feature of addiction is the high drug craving that may promote the continuation of consumption. Environmental stimuli classically conditioned to drug-intake have a strong motivational power for addicts and can elicit craving. However, addicts differ in the attitudes towards their own consumption behavior: some are content with drug taking (consonant users whereas others are discontent (dissonant users. Such differences may be important for clinical practice because the experience of dissonance might enhance the likelihood to consider treatment. This fMRI study investigated in smokers whether these different attitudes influence subjective and neural responses to smoking stimuli. Based on self-characterization, smokers were divided into consonant and dissonant smokers. These two groups were presented smoking stimuli and neutral stimuli. Former studies have suggested differences in the impact of smoking stimuli depending on the temporal stage of the smoking ritual they are associated with. Therefore, we used stimuli associated with the beginning (BEGIN-smoking-stimuli and stimuli associated with the terminal stage (END-smoking-stimuli of the smoking ritual as distinct stimulus categories. Stimulus ratings did not differ between both groups. Brain data showed that BEGIN-smoking-stimuli led to enhanced mesolimbic responses (amygdala, hippocampus, insula in dissonant compared to consonant smokers. In response to END-smoking-stimuli, dissonant smokers showed reduced mesocortical responses (orbitofrontal cortex, subcallosal cortex compared to consonant smokers. These results suggest that smoking stimuli with a high incentive value (BEGIN-smoking-stimuli are more appetitive for dissonant than consonant smokers at least on the neural level. To the contrary, smoking stimuli with low incentive value (END-smoking-stimuli seem to be less appetitive for dissonant smokers than consonant smokers. These differences might be one reason why dissonant

  14. Neural responses to smoking stimuli are influenced by smokers' attitudes towards their own smoking behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stippekohl, Bastian; Winkler, Markus H; Walter, Bertram; Kagerer, Sabine; Mucha, Ronald F; Pauli, Paul; Vaitl, Dieter; Stark, Rudolf

    2012-01-01

    An important feature of addiction is the high drug craving that may promote the continuation of consumption. Environmental stimuli classically conditioned to drug-intake have a strong motivational power for addicts and can elicit craving. However, addicts differ in the attitudes towards their own consumption behavior: some are content with drug taking (consonant users) whereas others are discontent (dissonant users). Such differences may be important for clinical practice because the experience of dissonance might enhance the likelihood to consider treatment. This fMRI study investigated in smokers whether these different attitudes influence subjective and neural responses to smoking stimuli. Based on self-characterization, smokers were divided into consonant and dissonant smokers. These two groups were presented smoking stimuli and neutral stimuli. Former studies have suggested differences in the impact of smoking stimuli depending on the temporal stage of the smoking ritual they are associated with. Therefore, we used stimuli associated with the beginning (BEGIN-smoking-stimuli) and stimuli associated with the terminal stage (END-smoking-stimuli) of the smoking ritual as distinct stimulus categories. Stimulus ratings did not differ between both groups. Brain data showed that BEGIN-smoking-stimuli led to enhanced mesolimbic responses (amygdala, hippocampus, insula) in dissonant compared to consonant smokers. In response to END-smoking-stimuli, dissonant smokers showed reduced mesocortical responses (orbitofrontal cortex, subcallosal cortex) compared to consonant smokers. These results suggest that smoking stimuli with a high incentive value (BEGIN-smoking-stimuli) are more appetitive for dissonant than consonant smokers at least on the neural level. To the contrary, smoking stimuli with low incentive value (END-smoking-stimuli) seem to be less appetitive for dissonant smokers than consonant smokers. These differences might be one reason why dissonant smokers

  15. Klinefelter syndrome has increased brain responses to auditory stimuli and motor output, but not to visual stimuli or Stroop adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallentin, Mikkel; Skakkebæk, Anne; Bojesen, Anders; Fedder, Jens; Laurberg, Peter; Østergaard, John R; Hertz, Jens Michael; Pedersen, Anders Degn; Gravholt, Claus Højbjerg

    2016-01-01

    Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY) (KS) is a genetic syndrome characterized by the presence of an extra X chromosome and low level of testosterone, resulting in a number of neurocognitive abnormalities, yet little is known about brain function. This study investigated the fMRI-BOLD response from KS relative to a group of Controls to basic motor, perceptual, executive and adaptation tasks. Participants (N: KS = 49; Controls = 49) responded to whether the words "GREEN" or "RED" were displayed in green or red (incongruent versus congruent colors). One of the colors was presented three times as often as the other, making it possible to study both congruency and adaptation effects independently. Auditory stimuli saying "GREEN" or "RED" had the same distribution, making it possible to study effects of perceptual modality as well as Frequency effects across modalities. We found that KS had an increased response to motor output in primary motor cortex and an increased response to auditory stimuli in auditory cortices, but no difference in primary visual cortices. KS displayed a diminished response to written visual stimuli in secondary visual regions near the Visual Word Form Area, consistent with the widespread dyslexia in the group. No neural differences were found in inhibitory control (Stroop) or in adaptation to differences in stimulus frequencies. Across groups we found a strong positive correlation between age and BOLD response in the brain's motor network with no difference between groups. No effects of testosterone level or brain volume were found. In sum, the present findings suggest that auditory and motor systems in KS are selectively affected, perhaps as a compensatory strategy, and that this is not a systemic effect as it is not seen in the visual system.

  16. Klinefelter syndrome has increased brain responses to auditory stimuli and motor output, but not to visual stimuli or Stroop adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mikkel Wallentin

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY (KS is a genetic syndrome characterized by the presence of an extra X chromosome and low level of testosterone, resulting in a number of neurocognitive abnormalities, yet little is known about brain function. This study investigated the fMRI-BOLD response from KS relative to a group of Controls to basic motor, perceptual, executive and adaptation tasks. Participants (N: KS = 49; Controls = 49 responded to whether the words “GREEN” or “RED” were displayed in green or red (incongruent versus congruent colors. One of the colors was presented three times as often as the other, making it possible to study both congruency and adaptation effects independently. Auditory stimuli saying “GREEN” or “RED” had the same distribution, making it possible to study effects of perceptual modality as well as Frequency effects across modalities. We found that KS had an increased response to motor output in primary motor cortex and an increased response to auditory stimuli in auditory cortices, but no difference in primary visual cortices. KS displayed a diminished response to written visual stimuli in secondary visual regions near the Visual Word Form Area, consistent with the widespread dyslexia in the group. No neural differences were found in inhibitory control (Stroop or in adaptation to differences in stimulus frequencies. Across groups we found a strong positive correlation between age and BOLD response in the brain's motor network with no difference between groups. No effects of testosterone level or brain volume were found. In sum, the present findings suggest that auditory and motor systems in KS are selectively affected, perhaps as a compensatory strategy, and that this is not a systemic effect as it is not seen in the visual system.

  17. Acute effects of LSD on amygdala activity during processing of fearful stimuli in healthy subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, F; Lenz, C; Dolder, P C; Harder, S; Schmid, Y; Lang, U E; Liechti, M E; Borgwardt, S

    2017-04-04

    Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) induces profound changes in various mental domains, including perception, self-awareness and emotions. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate the acute effects of LSD on the neural substrate of emotional processing in humans. Using a double-blind, randomised, cross-over study design, placebo or 100 μg LSD were orally administered to 20 healthy subjects before the fMRI scan, taking into account the subjective and pharmacological peak effects of LSD. The plasma levels of LSD were determined immediately before and after the scan. The study (including the a priori-defined study end point) was registered at ClinicalTrials.gov before study start (NCT02308969). The administration of LSD reduced reactivity of the left amygdala and the right medial prefrontal cortex relative to placebo during the presentation of fearful faces (PLSD-induced amygdala response to fearful stimuli and the LSD-induced subjective drug effects (PLSD modulates the engagement of brain regions that mediate emotional processing.

  18. Misremembering emotion: Inductive category effects for complex emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbin, Jonathan C; Crawford, L Elizabeth; Vavra, Dylan T

    2017-07-01

    Memories of objects are biased toward what is typical of the category to which they belong. Prior research on memory for emotional facial expressions has demonstrated a bias towards an emotional expression prototype (e.g., slightly happy faces are remembered as happier). We investigate an alternate source of bias in memory for emotional expressions - the central tendency bias. The central tendency bias skews reconstruction of a memory trace towards the center of the distribution for a particular attribute. This bias has been attributed to a Bayesian combination of an imprecise memory for a particular object with prior information about its category. Until now, studies examining the central tendency bias have focused on simple stimuli. We extend this work to socially relevant, complex, emotional facial expressions. We morphed facial expressions on a continuum from sad to happy. Different ranges of emotion were used in four experiments in which participants viewed individual expressions and, after a variable delay, reproduced each face by adjusting a morph to match it. Estimates were biased toward the center of the presented stimulus range, and the bias increased at longer memory delays, consistent with the Bayesian prediction that as trace memory loses precision, category knowledge is given more weight. The central tendency effect persisted within and across emotion categories (sad, neutral, and happy). This article expands the scope of work on inductive category effects to memory for complex, emotional stimuli.

  19. Music Influences Ratings of the Affect of Visual Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Waldie E Hanser

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This review provides an overview of recent studies that have examined how music influences the judgment of emotional stimuli, including affective pictures and film clips. The relevant findings are incorporated within a broader theory of music and emotion, and suggestions for future research are offered.Music is important in our daily lives, and one of its primary uses by listeners is the active regulation of one's mood. Despite this widespread use as a regulator of mood and its general pervasiveness in our society, the number of studies investigating the issue of whether, and how, music affects mood and emotional behaviour is limited however. Experiments investigating the effects of music have generally focused on how the emotional valence of background music impacts how affective pictures and/or film clips are evaluated. These studies have demonstrated strong effects of music on the emotional judgment of such stimuli. Most studies have reported concurrent background music to enhance the emotional valence when music and pictures are emotionally congruent. On the other hand, when music and pictures are emotionally incongruent, the ratings of the affect of the pictures will in- or decrease depending on the emotional valence of the background music. These results appear to be consistent in studies investigating the effects of (background music.

  20. Investigating vision in schizophrenia through responses to humorous stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Tschacher

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The visual environment of humans contains abundant ambiguity and fragmentary information. Therefore, an early step of vision must disambiguate the incessant stream of information. Humorous stimuli produce a situation that is strikingly analogous to this process: Funniness is associated with the incongruity contained in a joke, pun, or cartoon. Like in vision in general, appreciating a visual pun as funny necessitates disambiguation of incongruous information. Therefore, perceived funniness of visual puns was implemented to study visual perception in a sample of 36 schizophrenia patients and 56 healthy control participants. We found that both visual incongruity and Theory of Mind (ToM content of the puns were associated with increased experienced funniness. This was significantly less so in participants with schizophrenia, consistent with the gestalt hypothesis of schizophrenia, which would predict compromised perceptual organization in patients. The association of incongruity with funniness was not mediated by known predictors of humor appreciation, such as affective state, depression, or extraversion. Patients with higher excitement symptoms and, at a trend level, reduced cognitive symptoms, reported lower funniness experiences. An open question remained whether patients showed this deficiency of visual incongruity detection independent of their ToM deficiency. Humorous stimuli may be viewed as a convenient method to study perceptual processes, but also fundamental questions of higher-level cognition.

  1. Temporal attention for visual food stimuli in restrained eaters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neimeijer, Renate A M; de Jong, Peter J; Roefs, Anne

    2013-05-01

    Although restrained eaters try to limit their food intake, they often fail and indulge in exactly those foods that they want to avoid. A possible explanation is a temporal attentional bias for food cues. It could be that for these people food stimuli are processed relatively efficiently and require less attentional resources to enter awareness. Once a food stimulus has captured attention, it may be preferentially processed and granted prioritized access to limited cognitive resources. This might help explain why restrained eaters often fail in their attempts to restrict their food intake. A Rapid Serial Visual Presentation task consisting of dual and single target trials with food and neutral pictures as targets and/or distractors was administered to restrained (n=40) and unrestrained (n=40) eaters to study temporal attentional bias. Results indicated that (1) food cues did not diminish the attentional blink in restrained eaters when presented as second target; (2) specifically restrained eaters showed an interference effect of identifying food targets on the identification of preceding neutral targets; (3) for both restrained and unrestrained eaters, food cues enhanced the attentional blink; (4) specifically in restrained eaters, food distractors elicited an attention blink in the single target trials. In restrained eaters, food cues get prioritized access to limited cognitive resources, even if this processing priority interferes with their current goals. This temporal attentional bias for food stimuli might help explain why restrained eaters typically have difficulties maintaining their diet rules. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Dynamic Stimuli And Active Processing In Human Visual Perception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haber, Ralph N.

    1990-03-01

    Theories of visual perception traditionally have considered a static retinal image to be the starting point for processing; and has considered processing both to be passive and a literal translation of that frozen, two dimensional, pictorial image. This paper considers five problem areas in the analysis of human visually guided locomotion, in which the traditional approach is contrasted to newer ones that utilize dynamic definitions of stimulation, and an active perceiver: (1) differentiation between object motion and self motion, and among the various kinds of self motion (e.g., eyes only, head only, whole body, and their combinations); (2) the sources and contents of visual information that guide movement; (3) the acquisition and performance of perceptual motor skills; (4) the nature of spatial representations, percepts, and the perceived layout of space; and (5) and why the retinal image is a poor starting point for perceptual processing. These newer approaches argue that stimuli must be considered as dynamic: humans process the systematic changes in patterned light when objects move and when they themselves move. Furthermore, the processing of visual stimuli must be active and interactive, so that perceivers can construct panoramic and stable percepts from an interaction of stimulus information and expectancies of what is contained in the visual environment. These developments all suggest a very different approach to the computational analyses of object location and identification, and of the visual guidance of locomotion.

  3. Medial temporal lobe damage impairs representation of simple stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David E Warren

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Medial temporal lobe damage in humans is typically thought to produce a circumscribed impairment in the acquisition of new enduring memories, but recent reports have documented deficits even in short-term maintenance. We examined possible maintenance deficits in a population of medial temporal lobe amnesics, with the goal of characterizing their impairments as either representational drift or outright loss of representation over time. Patients and healthy comparisons performed a visual search task in which the similarity of various lures to a target was varied parametrically. Stimuli were simple shapes varying along one of several visual dimensions. The task was performed in two conditions, one presenting a sample target simultaneously with the search array and the other imposing a delay between sample and array. Eye-movement data collected during search revealed that the duration of fixations to items varied with lure-target similarity for all participants, i.e., fixations were longer for items more similar to the target. In the simultaneous condition, patients and comparisons exhibited an equivalent effect of similarity on fixation durations. However, imposing a delay modulated the effect differently for the two groups: in comparisons, fixation duration to similar items was exaggerated; in patients, the original effect was diminished. These findings indicate that medial temporal lobe lesions subtly impair short-term maintenance of even simple stimuli, with performance reflecting not the complete loss of the maintained representation but rather a degradation or progressive drift of the representation over time.

  4. Representation of dynamical stimuli in populations of threshold neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatjana Tchumatchenko

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Many sensory or cognitive events are associated with dynamic current modulations in cortical neurons. This raises an urgent demand for tractable model approaches addressing the merits and limits of potential encoding strategies. Yet, current theoretical approaches addressing the response to mean- and variance-encoded stimuli rarely provide complete response functions for both modes of encoding in the presence of correlated noise. Here, we investigate the neuronal population response to dynamical modifications of the mean or variance of the synaptic bombardment using an alternative threshold model framework. In the variance and mean channel, we provide explicit expressions for the linear and non-linear frequency response functions in the presence of correlated noise and use them to derive population rate response to step-like stimuli. For mean-encoded signals, we find that the complete response function depends only on the temporal width of the input correlation function, but not on other functional specifics. Furthermore, we show that both mean- and variance-encoded signals can relay high-frequency inputs, and in both schemes step-like changes can be detected instantaneously. Finally, we obtain the pairwise spike correlation function and the spike triggered average from the linear mean-evoked response function. These results provide a maximally tractable limiting case that complements and extends previous results obtained in the integrate and fire framework.

  5. Auditory stimuli elicit hippocampal neuronal responses during sleep

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ekaterina eVinnik

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available To investigate how hippocampal neurons code behaviorally salient stimuli, we recorded from neurons in the CA1 region of hippocampus in rats while they learned to associate the presence of sound with water reward. Rats learned to alternate between two reward ports at which, in 50 percent of the trials, sound stimuli were presented followed by water reward after a 3-second delay. Sound at the water port predicted subsequent reward delivery in 100 percent of the trials and the absence of sound predicted reward omission. During this task, 40% of recorded neurons fired differently according to which of the 2 reward ports the rat was visiting. A smaller fraction of neurons demonstrated onset response to sound/nosepoke (19% and reward delivery (24%. When the sounds were played during passive wakefulness, 8% of neurons responded with short latency onset responses; 25% of neurons responded to sounds when they were played during sleep. Based on the current findings and the results of previous experiments we propose the existence of two types of hippocampal neuronal responses to sounds: sound-onset responses with very short latency and longer-lasting sound-specific responses that are likely to be present when the animal is actively engaged in the task. During sleep the short-latency responses in hippocampus are intermingled with sustained activity which in the current experiment was detected for 1-2 seconds.

  6. Effect of task demands on dual coding of pictorial stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babbitt, B C

    1982-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that verbal labeling of a picture does not occur automatically. Although several experiments using paired-associate tasks produced little evidence indicating the use of a verbal code with picture stimuli, the tasks were probably not sensitive to whether the codes were activated initially. It is possible that verbal labels were activated at input, but not used later in performing the tasks. The present experiment used a color-naming interference task in order to assess, with a more sensitive measure, the amount of verbal coding occurring in response to word or picture input. Subjects named the color of ink in which words were printed following either word or picture input. If verbal labeling of the input occurs, then latency of color naming should increase when the input item and color-naming word are related. The results provided substantial evidence of such verbal activation when the input items were words. However, the presence of verbal activation with picture input was a function of task demands. Activation occurred when a recall memory test was used, but not when a recognition memory test was used. The results support the conclusion that name information (labels) need not be activated during presentation of visual stimuli.

  7. Crosslinked ionic polysaccharides for stimuli-sensitive drug delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez-Lorenzo, Carmen; Blanco-Fernandez, Barbara; Puga, Ana M; Concheiro, Angel

    2013-08-01

    Polysaccharides are gaining increasing attention as components of stimuli-responsive drug delivery systems, particularly since they can be obtained in a well characterized and reproducible way from the natural sources. Ionic polysaccharides can be readily crosslinked to render hydrogel networks sensitive to a variety of internal and external variables, and thus suitable for switching drug release on-off through diverse mechanisms. Hybrids, composites and grafted polymers can reinforce the responsiveness and widen the range of stimuli to which polysaccharide-based systems can respond. This review analyzes the state of the art of crosslinked ionic polysaccharides as components of delivery systems that can regulate drug release as a function of changes in pH, ion nature and concentration, electric and magnetic field intensity, light wavelength, temperature, redox potential, and certain molecules (enzymes, illness markers, and so on). Examples of specific applications are provided. The information compiled demonstrates that crosslinked networks of ionic polysaccharides are suitable building blocks for developing advanced externally activated and feed-back modulated drug delivery systems. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Stimuli-responsive Smart Liposomes in Cancer Targeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Ankit; Jain, Sanjay K

    2018-02-08

    Liposomes are vesicular carriers which possess aqueous core entrapped within the lipid bilayer. These are carriers of choice because of biocompatible and biodegradable features in addition to flexibility of surface modifications at surface and lipid compositions of lipid bilayers. Liposomes have been reported well for cancer treatment using both passive and active targeting approaches however tumor microenvironment is still the biggest hurdle for safe and effective delivery of anticancer agents. To overcome this problem, stimuli-responsive smart liposomes have emerged as promising cargoes pioneered to anomalous tumor milieu in response to pH, temperature, and enzymes etc. as internal triggers, and magnetic field, ultrasound, and redox potential as external guides for enhancement of drug delivery to tumors. This review focuses on all such stimuli-responsive approaches using fabrication potentiality of liposomes in combination to various ligands, linkers, and PEGylation etc. Scientists engaged in cancer targeting approaches can get benefited greatly with this knowledgeable assemblage of advances in liposomal nanovectors. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  9. Analyzing the User Behavior toward Electronic Commerce Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo-Romero, Carlota; Alarcón-Del-Amo, María-Del-Carmen; Gómez-Borja, Miguel-Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response paradigm this research analyzes the main differences between the effects of two types of web technologies: Verbal web technology (i.e., navigational structure as utilitarian stimulus) versus non-verbal web technology (music and presentation of products as hedonic stimuli). Specific webmosphere stimuli have not been examined yet as separate variables and their impact on internal and behavioral responses seems unknown. Therefore, the objective of this research consists in analyzing the impact of these web technologies -which constitute the web atmosphere or webmosphere of a website- on shopping human behavior (i.e., users' internal states -affective, cognitive, and satisfaction- and behavioral responses - approach responses, and real shopping outcomes-) within the retail online store created by computer, taking into account some mediator variables (i.e., involvement, atmospheric responsiveness, and perceived risk). A 2 ("free" versus "hierarchical" navigational structure) × 2 ("on" versus "off" music) × 2 ("moving" versus "static" images) between-subjects computer experimental design is used to test empirically this research. In addition, an integrated methodology was developed allowing the simulation, tracking and recording of virtual user behavior within an online shopping environment. As main conclusion, this study suggests that the positive responses of online consumers might increase when they are allowed to freely navigate the online stores and their experience is enriched by animate gifts and music background. The effect caused by mediator variables modifies relatively the final shopping human behavior.

  10. Analyzing the user behavior towards Electronic Commerce stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlota Lorenzo-Romero

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response paradigm this research analyzes the main differences between the effects of two types of web technologies: Verbal web technology (i.e. navigational structure as utilitarian stimulus versus nonverbal web technology (music and presentation of products as hedonic stimuli. Specific webmosphere stimuli have not been examined yet as separate variables and their impact on internal and behavioral responses seems unknown. Therefore, the objective of this research consists in analyzing the impact of these web technologies –which constitute the web atmosphere or webmosphere of a website– on shopping human bebaviour (i.e. users’ internal states -affective, cognitive, and satisfaction- and behavioral responses - approach responses, and real shopping outcomes- within the retail online store created by computer, taking into account some mediator variables (i.e. involvement, atmospheric responsiveness, and perceived risk. A 2(free versus hierarchical navigational structure x2(on versus off music x2(moving versus static images between-subjects computer experimental design is used to test empirically this research. In addition, an integrated methodology was developed allowing the simulation, tracking and recording of virtual user behavior within an online shopping environment. As main conclusion, this study suggests that the positive responses of online consumers might increase when they are allowed to freely navigate the online stores and their experience is enriched by animate gifts and music background. The effect caused by mediator variables modifies relatively the final shopping human behavior.

  11. Swimming micro-robot powered by stimuli-sensitive gel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masoud, Hassan; Alexeev, Alexander

    2012-11-01

    Using three-dimensional computer simulations, we design a simple maneuverable micro-swimmer that can self-propel and navigate in highly viscous (low Reynolds-number) environments. Our simple swimmer consists of a cubic gel body which periodically changes volume in response to external stimuli, two rigid rectangular flaps attached to the opposite sides of the gel body, and a flexible steering flap at the front end of the swimmer. The stimuli-sensitive body undergoes periodic expansions (swelling) and contractions (deswelling) leading to a time-irreversible beating motion of the propulsive flaps that propel the micro-swimmer. Thus, the responsive gel body acts as an ``engine'' actuating the motion of the swimmer. We examine how the swimming speed depends on the gel and flap properties. We also probe how the swimmer trajectory can be changed using a responsive steering flap whose curvature is controlled by an external stimulus. We show that the turning occurs due to steering flap bending and periodic beating. Furthermore, our simulations reveal that the turning direction can be regulated by changing the intensity of external stimulus.

  12. Moving Stimuli Facilitate Synchronization But Not Temporal Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Susana; Castro, São Luís

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that a moving visual stimulus (e.g., a bouncing ball) facilitates synchronization compared to a static stimulus (e.g., a flashing light), and that it can even be as effective as an auditory beep. We asked a group of participants to perform different tasks with four stimulus types: beeps, siren-like sounds, visual flashes (static) and bouncing balls. First, participants performed synchronization with isochronous sequences (stimulus-guided synchronization), followed by a continuation phase in which the stimulus was internally generated (imagery-guided synchronization). Then they performed a perception task, in which they judged whether the final part of a temporal sequence was compatible with the previous beat structure (stimulus-guided perception). Similar to synchronization, an imagery-guided variant was added, in which sequences contained a gap in between (imagery-guided perception). Balls outperformed flashes and matched beeps (powerful ball effect) in stimulus-guided synchronization but not in perception (stimulus- or imagery-guided). In imagery-guided synchronization, performance accuracy decreased for beeps and balls, but not for flashes and sirens. Our findings suggest that the advantages of moving visual stimuli over static ones are grounded in action rather than perception, and they support the hypothesis that the sensorimotor coupling mechanisms for auditory (beeps) and moving visual stimuli (bouncing balls) overlap.

  13. The Motivating Effect of Antecedent Stimuli on the Web Shop: A Conjoint Analysis of the Impact of Antecedent Stimuli at the Point of Online Purchase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagerstrom, Asle

    2010-01-01

    This article introduces the concept of motivating operation (MO) to the field of online consumer research. A conjoint analysis was conducted to assess the motivating impact of antecedent stimuli on online purchasing. Stimuli tested were in-stock status, price, other customers' reviews, order confirmation procedures, and donation to charity. The…

  14. Combined non-adaptive light and smell stimuli lowered blood pressure, reduced heart rate and reduced negative affect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Shan; Jacob, Tim J C

    2016-03-15

    Bright light therapy has been shown to have a positive impact on seasonal affective disorder (SAD), depression and anxiety. Smell has also has been shown to have effects on mood, stress, anxiety and depression. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of the combination of light and smell in a non-adaptive cycle. Human subjects were given smell (lemon, lavender or peppermint) and light stimuli in a triangular wave (60scycle) for 15min. Blood pressure and heart rate were monitored before and after each session for 5 consecutive days and a Profile of Mood States (POMS) test was administered before and after the sensory stimulation on days 1, 3 and 5. The light-smell stimulus lowered blood pressure, both systolic and diastolic, and reduced heart rate for all odours compared to control. Of the two sensory stimuli, the odour stimulus contributed most to this effect. The different aromas in the light-smell combinations could be distinguished by their different effects on the mood factors with lemon inducing the greatest mood changes in Dejection-Depression, Anger-Hostility, Tension-Anxiety. In conclusion, combined light and smell stimulation was effective in lowering blood pressure, reducing heart rate and improving mood. The combination was more effective than either smell or light stimuli alone, suggesting that a light-smell combination would be a more robust and efficacious alternative treatment for depression, anxiety and stress. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Stimuli-responsive PEGylated prodrugs for targeted doxorubicin delivery

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu, Minghui; Qian, Junmin, E-mail: jmqian@mail.xjtu.edu.cn; Liu, Xuefeng; Liu, Ting; Wang, Hongjie

    2015-05-01

    In recent years, stimuli-sensitive prodrugs have been extensively studied for the rapid “burst” release of antitumor drugs to enhance chemotherapeutic efficiency. In this study, a novel stimuli-sensitive prodrug containing galactosamine as a targeting moiety, poly(ethylene glycol)–doxorubicin (PEG–DOX) conjugate, was developed for targeting HepG2 human liver cancer cells. To obtain the PEG–DOX conjugate, both galactosamine-decorated poly(ethylene glycol) aldehyde (Gal-PEG-CHO) and methoxy poly(ethylene glycol) aldehyde (mPEG-CHO) were firstly synthesized and functionalized with dithiodipropionate dihydrazide (TPH) through direct reductive amination via Schiff's base formation, and then DOX molecules were chemically conjugated to the hydrazide end groups of TPH-functionalized Gal-/m-PEG chains via pH-sensitive hydrazone linkages. The chemical structures of TPH-functionalized PEG and PEG–DOX prodrug were confirmed by {sup 1}H NMR analysis. The PEG–DOX conjugate could self-assemble into spherical nanomicelles with a mean diameter of 140 nm, as indicated by transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering. The drug loading content and loading efficiency in the prodrug nanomicelles were as high as 20 wt.% and 75 wt.%, respectively. In vitro drug release studies showed that DOX was released rapidly from the prodrug nanomicelles at the intracellular levels of pH and reducing agent. Cellular uptake and MTT experiments demonstrated that the galactosamine-decorated prodrug nanomicelles were more efficiently internalized into HepG2 cells via a receptor-mediated endocytosis process and exhibited a higher toxicity, compared with pristine prodrug nanomicelles. These results suggest that the novel Gal-PEG–DOX prodrug nanomicelles have tremendous potential for targeted liver cancer therapy. - Highlights: • A novel stimuli-responsive PEGylated prodrugs is synthesized. • PEGylated prodrugs can self-assemble into spherical nanoparticles (140 nm

  16. Age-related differences in cortical activity during a visuo-spatial working memory task with facial stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávia Schechtman Belham

    Full Text Available Emotion, importantly displayed by facial expressions, is one of the most significant memory modulators. The interaction between memory and the different emotional valences change across lifespan, while young adults (YA are expected to better recall negative events (Negativity Bias Hypothesis, older adults (OA tend to focus on positive stimuli (Positivity Effect Hypothesis. This research work aims at verifying whether cortical electrical activity of these two age groups would also be differently influenced by emotional valences in a visuo-spatial working memory task. 27 YA (13 males and 25 OA (14 males, all healthy volunteers, underwent electroencephalographic recordings (21 scalp electrodes montage, while performing the Spatial Delayed Recognition Span Task using a touch screen with different stimuli categories: neutral, positive and negative faces and geometric pictures. YA obtained higher scores than OA, and showed higher activation of theta and alpha bands in the frontal and midline regions, besides a more evident right-hemispheric asymmetry on alpha band when compared to OA. For both age groups, performance in the task was worse for positive faces than to negative and to neutral faces. Facial stimuli induced a better performance and higher alpha activation on the pre-frontal region for YA, and on the midline, occipital and left temporal regions for OA when compared to geometric figures. The superior performance of YA was expected due to the natural cognitive deficits connected to ageing, as was a better performance with facial stimuli due to the evolutionary importance of faces. These results were related to cortical activity on areas of importance for action-planning, decision making and sustained attention. Taken together, they are in accordance with the Negativity Bias but do not support the Positivity Effect. The methodology used was able to identify age-related differences in cortical activity during emotional mnemonic processing and

  17. Stimuli-Directed Helical Chirality Inversion and Bio-Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziyu Lv

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Helical structure is a sophisticated ubiquitous motif found in nature, in artificial polymers, and in supramolecular assemblies from microscopic to macroscopic points of view. Significant progress has been made in the synthesis and structural elucidation of helical polymers, nevertheless, a new direction for helical polymeric materials, is how to design smart systems with controllable helical chirality, and further use them to develop chiral functional materials and promote their applications in biology, biochemistry, medicine, and nanotechnology fields. This review summarizes the recent progress in the development of high-performance systems with tunable helical chirality on receiving external stimuli and discusses advances in their applications as drug delivery vesicles, sensors, molecular switches, and liquid crystals. Challenges and opportunities in this emerging area are also presented in the conclusion.

  18. Perceiving imitatible stimuli: consequences of isomorphism between input and output.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, M

    2001-07-01

    For more than a century, psychologists have been intrigued by the idea that mental representations of perceived human actions are closely connected with mental representations of performing those same actions. In this article, connections between input and output representations are considered in terms of the potential for imitation. A broad range of evidence suggests that, for imitatible stimuli, input and output representations are isomorphic to one another, allowing mutual influence between perception and motoric planning that is rapid, effortless, and possibly obligatory. Thus, the cognitive consequences of imitatibility may underlie such diverse phenomena as phoneme perception; imitation in neonates; echoic memory; stimulus-response compatibility; conduction aphasia; maintenance rehearsal; and a variety of developmental and social activities such as language acquisition, social learning, empathy, and monitoring one's own behavior.

  19. Preattentive processing, poststimulus elaboration, and memory for emotionally arousing stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Migita, Mai; Otani, Hajime; Libkuman, Terry M; Sheffert, Sonya M

    2011-01-01

    Christianson (1992) proposed two mechanisms to explain emotionally enhanced memory: preattentive processing and poststimulus elaboration. Experiment 1 examined these processes by instructing participants to perform (1) a concurrent distractor task, (2) a continuous distractor task, or (3) both while viewing the negatively arousing, positively arousing, and neutral pictures. Recall of negatively arousing pictures showed a small decline in one of the distractor conditions, indicating that elaboration plays a minor role in remembering these pictures. Experiment 2 partially replicated Experiment 1 with an intentional learning instruction to investigate whether participants in Experiment 1 were anticipating a recall test. For all three picture types, recall declined in the continuous distractor task condition, indicating that elaboration played a role, even when the pictures were negatively arousing. Overall, these results were consistent with the notion that remembering negatively valenced stimuli is largely based on preattentive processing with a minor role played by poststimulus elaboration.

  20. Comparisons of memory for nonverbal auditory and visual sequential stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, D J; Cacace, A T

    1995-01-01

    Properties of auditory and visual sensory memory were compared by examining subjects' recognition performance of randomly generated binary auditory sequential frequency patterns and binary visual sequential color patterns within a forced-choice paradigm. Experiment 1 demonstrated serial-position effects in auditory and visual modalities consisting of both primacy and recency effects. Experiment 2 found that retention of auditory and visual information was remarkably similar when assessed across a 10s interval. Experiments 3 and 4, taken together, showed that the recency effect in sensory memory is affected more by the type of response required (recognition vs. reproduction) than by the sensory modality employed. These studies suggest that auditory and visual sensory memory stores for nonverbal stimuli share similar properties with respect to serial-position effects and persistence over time.

  1. Retrospective Attention Gates Discrete Conscious Access to Past Sensory Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thibault, Louis; van den Berg, Ronald; Cavanagh, Patrick; Sergent, Claire

    2016-01-01

    Cueing attention after the disappearance of visual stimuli biases which items will be remembered best. This observation has historically been attributed to the influence of attention on memory as opposed to subjective visual experience. We recently challenged this view by showing that cueing attention after the stimulus can improve the perception of a single Gabor patch at threshold levels of contrast. Here, we test whether this retro-perception actually increases the frequency of consciously perceiving the stimulus, or simply allows for a more precise recall of its features. We used retro-cues in an orientation-matching task and performed mixture-model analysis to independently estimate the proportion of guesses and the precision of non-guess responses. We find that the improvements in performance conferred by retrospective attention are overwhelmingly determined by a reduction in the proportion of guesses, providing strong evidence that attracting attention to the target's location after its disappearance increases the likelihood of perceiving it consciously.

  2. Stimuli Responsive Ionogels for Sensing Applications—An Overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Kavanagh

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available This overview aims to summarize the existing potential of “Ionogels” as a platform to develop stimuli responsive materials. Ionogels are a class of materials that contain an Ionic Liquid (IL confined within a polymer matrix. Recently defined as “a solid interconnected network spreading throughout a liquid phase”, the ionogel therefore combines the properties of both its solid and liquid components. ILs are low melting salts that exist as liquids composed entirely of cations and anions at or around 100 °C. Important physical properties of these liquids such as viscosity, density, melting point and conductivity can be altered to suit a purpose by choice of the cation/anion. Here we provide an overview to highlight the literature thus far, detailing the encapsulation of IL and responsive materials within these polymeric structures. Exciting applications in the areas of optical and electrochemical sensing, solid state electrolytes and actuating materials shall be discussed.

  3. Plasma catecholamine responses to physiologic stimuli in normal human pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barron, W M; Mujais, S K; Zinaman, M; Bravo, E L; Lindheimer, M D

    1986-01-01

    The dynamic response of the sympathoadrenal system was evaluated during and after pregnancy in 13 healthy women with a protocol that compared cardiovascular parameters and plasma catecholamine levels during the basal state, after postural maneuvers, and following isometric exercise. Plasma epinephrine and norepinephrine levels were similar during and after gestation when the women rested on their sides, but heart rate was greater in pregnancy. Ten minutes of supine recumbency produced minimal changes, but attenuation of the anticipated increases in heart rate and plasma norepinephrine levels during standing and isometric exercise were observed during pregnancy. In contrast, alterations in plasma epinephrine appeared unaffected by gestation. Plasma renin activity and aldosterone levels were, as expected, greater during pregnancy; however, increments in response to upright posture were similar in pregnant and postpartum women. To the extent that circulating catecholamines may be considered indices of sympathoadrenal function, these data suggest that normal pregnancy alters cardiovascular and sympathetic nervous system responses to physiologic stimuli.

  4. Processing of Binaural Pitch Stimuli in Hearing-Impaired Listeners

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten

    2009-01-01

    Binaural pitch is a tonal sensation produced by introducing a frequency-dependent interaural phase shift in binaurally presented white noise. As no spectral cues are present in the physical stimulus, binaural pitch perception is assumed to rely on accurate temporal fine structure coding and intact...... binaural integration mechanisms. This study investigated to what extent basic auditory measures of binaural processing as well as cognitive abilities are correlated with the ability of hearing-impaired listeners to perceive binaural pitch. Subjects from three groups (1: normal-hearing; 2: cochlear...... hearingloss; 3: retro-cochlear impairment) were asked to identify the pitch contour of series of five notes of equal duration, ranging from 523 to 784 Hz, played either with Huggins’ binaural pitch stimuli (BP) or perceptually similar, but monaurally detectable, pitches (MP). All subjects from groups 1 and 2...

  5. Disentangling the role of floral sensory stimuli in pollination networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kantsa, Aphrodite; Raguso, Robert A.; Dyer, Adrian G.

    2018-01-01

    Despite progress in understanding pollination network structure, the functional roles of floral sensory stimuli (visual, olfactory) have never been addressed comprehensively in a community context, even though such traits are known to mediate plant-pollinator interactions. Here, we use...... a comprehensive dataset of floral traits and a novel dynamic data-pooling methodology to explore the impacts of floral sensory diversity on the structure of a pollination network in a Mediterranean scrubland. Our approach tracks transitions in the network behaviour of each plant species throughout its flowering...... period and, despite dynamism in visitor composition, reveals significant links to floral scent, and/or colour as perceived by pollinators. Having accounted for floral phenology, abundance and phylogeny, the persistent association between floral sensory traits and visitor guilds supports a deeper role...

  6. Balancing Attended and Global Stimuli in Perceived Video Quality Assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    You, Junyong; Korhonen, Jari; Perkis, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    . This paper proposes a quality model based on the late attention selection theory, assuming that the video quality is perceived via two mechanisms: global and local quality assessment. First we model several visual features influencing the visual attention in quality assessment scenarios to derive......The visual attention mechanism plays a key role in the human perception system and it has a significant impact on our assessment of perceived video quality. In spite of receiving less attention from the viewers, unattended stimuli can still contribute to the understanding of the visual content...... an attention map using appropriate fusion techniques. The global quality assessment as based on the assumption that viewers allocate their attention equally to the entire visual scene, is modeled by four carefully designed quality features. By employing these same quality features, the local quality model...

  7. Olfactory stimuli as context cues in human memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cann, A; Ross, D A

    1989-01-01

    Olfactory stimuli were used as context cues in a recognition memory paradigm. Male college students were exposed to 50 slides of the faces of college females while in the presence of a pleasant or an unpleasant odor. During the acquisition phase, ratings of physical attractiveness of the slides were collected. After a 48-hr delay, a recognition test was given using the original 50 slides and 50 new slides. The recognition test was conducted with either the original odor or the alternative odor present. A no-odor control group did not receive olfactory cues. The attractiveness ratings indicated that the odor variations had no effect on these social judgments. Analyses of d' scores, hits, and false alarms for the recognition performance indicated support for the predicted interaction in which presence of the same odor at both sessions led to better overall performance.

  8. Pupillary response to direct and consensual chromatic light stimuli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Traustason, Sindri; Brondsted, Adam Elias; Sander, Birgit

    2016-01-01

    Medical, Copenhagen), which is capable of both direct and consensual pupillometry measurements. The device uses a pair of dual monochromatic narrow bandwidth LED light sources, red (660 nm) and blue (470 nm). Pupil light responses were recorded with infrared video cameras and analysed using custom-made circuitry...... and software. Subjects were randomized to receive light stimuli at either the right or left eye after 5 min of dark adaptation. Pupil light responses were recorded in both eyes for 10 seconds before illumination, during illumination and 50 seconds after illumination with red and blue light. Three variables...... were defined for the recorded pupil responses: the maximal constriction amplitude (CAmax ), the pupil response during illumination and postillumination pupil response (PIPR). RESULTS: No difference was found in the pupil response to blue light. With red light, the pupil response during illumination...

  9. Sleep deprivation affects reactivity to positive but not negative stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pilcher, June J; Callan, Christina; Posey, J Laura

    2015-12-01

    The current study examined the effects of partial and total sleep deprivation on emotional reactivity. Twenty-eight partially sleep-deprived participants and 31 totally sleep-deprived participants rated their valence and arousal responses to positive and negative pictures across four testing sessions during the day following partial sleep deprivation or during the night under total sleep deprivation. The results suggest that valence and arousal ratings decreased under both sleep deprivation conditions. In addition, partial and total sleep deprivation had a greater negative effect on positive events than negative events. These results suggest that sleep-deprived persons are more likely to respond less to positive events than negative events. One explanation for the current findings is that negative events could elicit more attentive behavior and thus stable responding under sleep deprivation conditions. As such, sleep deprivation could impact reactivity to emotional stimuli through automated attentional and self-regulatory processes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. What boxing-related stimuli reveal about response behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ottoboni, Giovanni; Russo, Gabriele; Tessari, Alessia

    2015-01-01

    When two athletes meet inside the ropes of the boxing ring to fight, their cognitive systems have to respond as quickly as possible to a manifold of stimuli to assure victory. In the present work, we studied the pre-attentive mechanisms, which form the basis of an athlete's ability in reacting to an opponent's punches. Expert boxers, beginner boxers and people with no experience of boxing performed a Simon-like task where they judged the colour of the boxing gloves worn by athletes in attack postures by pressing two lateralised keys. Although participants were not instructed to pay attention to the direction of the punches, beginner boxers' responses resembled a defence-related pattern, expert boxers' resembled counterattacks, whereas non-athletes' responses were not influenced by the unrelated task information. Results are discussed in the light of an expertise-related action simulation account.

  11. Stimuli-sensitive hydrogels: A novel ophthalmic drug delivery system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Singh Vinod

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Stimuli-sensitive hydrogels are three-dimensional, hydrophilic, polymeric networks capable of imbibing large amounts of water or biological fluids on stimulation, such as pH, temperature and ionic change. Aim: To develop hydrogels that are sensitive to stimuli, i.e. pH, in the cul-de-sac of the eye for providing a prolonged effect and increased bioavailability with reduction in frequency of administration. Materials and Methods: Hydrogels were formulated by using timolol maleate as the model drug, polyacrylic acid as the gelling agents, hydroxyl ethyl cellulose as the viscolizer and sodium chloride as the isotonic agent. Stirring of ingredients in pH 4 phosphate buffer at high speed was carried out. The dynamic dialysis technique was used for drug release studies. In vivo study for reduction in intraocular pressure was carried out by using albino rabbits. Statistical Analysis: Drug release studies data were used for statistical analysis in first-order plots, Higuchi plots and Peppas exponential plots. Student t-test was performed for in vivo study. Results: Viscosity of the hydrogel increases from 3.84 cps to 9.54 cps due to change in pH 4 to pH 7.4. The slope value of the Peppas equation was found to be 0.3081, 0.3743 and 0.2964. Up to 80% of drug was released in an 8 h drug release study. Sterile hydrogels with no ocular irritation were obtained. Conclusions: Hydrogels show increase in viscosity due to change in pH. Hydrogels were therapeutically effacious, stable, non-irritant and showed Fickian diffusion. In vivo results clearly show a prolonged reduction in intraocular pressure, which was helpful for reduction in the frequency of administration.

  12. Dopamine, paranormal belief, and the detection of meaningful stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krummenacher, Peter; Mohr, Christine; Haker, Helene; Brugger, Peter

    2010-08-01

    Dopamine (DA) is suggested to improve perceptual and cognitive decisions by increasing the signal-to-noise ratio. Somewhat paradoxically, a hyperdopaminergia (arguably more accentuated in the right hemisphere) has also been implied in the genesis of unusual experiences such as hallucinations and paranormal thought. To test these opposing assumptions, we used two lateralized decision tasks, one with lexical (tapping left-hemisphere functions), the other with facial stimuli (tapping right-hemisphere functions). Participants were 40 healthy right-handed men, of whom 20 reported unusual, "paranormal" experiences and beliefs ("believers"), whereas the remaining participants were unexperienced and critical ("skeptics"). In a between-subject design, levodopa (200 mg) or placebo administration was balanced between belief groups (double-blind procedure). For each task and visual field, we calculated sensitivity (d') and response tendency (criterion) derived from signal detection theory. Results showed the typical right visual field advantage for the lexical decision task and a higher d' for verbal than facial stimuli. For the skeptics, d' was lower in the levodopa than in the placebo group. Criterion analyses revealed that believers favored false alarms over misses, whereas skeptics displayed the opposite preference. Unexpectedly, under levodopa, these decision preferences were lower in both groups. We thus infer that levodopa (1) decreases sensitivity in perceptual-cognitive decisions, but only in skeptics, and (2) makes skeptics less and believers slightly more conservative. These results stand at odd to the common view that DA generally improves signal-to-noise ratios. Paranormal ideation seems an important personality dimension and should be assessed in investigations on the detection of signals in noise.

  13. The influence of various distracting stimuli on spatial working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina Starc

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Protecting information from distraction is essential for optimal performance of working memory. We examined how the presence of distracting stimuli influences spatial working memory and compared the effect of both task-similar and negatively emotionally salient distractors. We checked the effect of distractors on the accuracy of high-resolution representations, as well as the maintenance of spatial categories, and more precisely defined not only the existence but also the direction of the distracting influences (towards or away from the position of the distractor. Participants (n = 25, 8 men, 19–31 years old were asked to remember the exact position of a target scrambled image and recall it with a joystick after a delay. In some trials an additional distracting image (scrambled, neutral or negative was shown during the delay. We measured the spread of responses (standard deviation of angular error and shifts of the average response towards the prototype angles (45° or towards the position of distractors. Distracting stimuli did not affect the spread of responses and decreased the tendency of participants to move the responses towards the prototype angle. Different types of distractors did not differ in this effect. Contrary to expectations, the participants moved their responses away from the position of distractors; this effect was more pronounced for negative distractors. In addition to memorizing the exact position and maintaining attention on the position of the stimulus, participants are likely to strategically use information about spatial category membership (quadrants and information about the position of the distractor. The repulsive effect of the distractor likely results from inhibition of its position and indicates the need to supplement computational models of spatial working memory and to take into account different strategies of working memory use.

  14. Visual laterality in dolphins: importance of the familiarity of stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Many studies of cerebral asymmetries in different species lead, on the one hand, to a better understanding of the functions of each cerebral hemisphere and, on the other hand, to develop an evolutionary history of hemispheric laterality. Our animal model is particularly interesting because of its original evolutionary path, i.e. return to aquatic life after a terrestrial phase. The rare reports concerning visual laterality of marine mammals investigated mainly discrimination processes. As dolphins are migrant species they are confronted to a changing environment. Being able to categorize new versus familiar objects would allow dolphins a rapid adaptation to novel environments. Visual laterality could be a prerequisite to this adaptability. To date, no study, to our knowledge, has analyzed the environmental factors that could influence their visual laterality. Results We investigated visual laterality expressed spontaneously at the water surface by a group of five common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in response to various stimuli. The stimuli presented ranged from very familiar objects (known and manipulated previously) to familiar objects (known but never manipulated) to unfamiliar objects (unknown, never seen previously). At the group level, dolphins used their left eye to observe very familiar objects and their right eye to observe unfamiliar objects. However, eyes are used indifferently to observe familiar objects with intermediate valence. Conclusion Our results suggest different visual cerebral processes based either on the global shape of well-known objects or on local details of unknown objects. Moreover, the manipulation of an object appears necessary for these dolphins to construct a global representation of an object enabling its immediate categorization for subsequent use. Our experimental results pointed out some cognitive capacities of dolphins which might be crucial for their wild life given their fission-fusion social system

  15. Pupillary response to direct and consensual chromatic light stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traustason, Sindri; Brondsted, Adam Elias; Sander, Birgit; Lund-Andersen, Henrik

    2016-02-01

    To assess whether the direct and consensual postillumination (ipRGC-driven) pupil light responses to chromatic light stimuli are equal in healthy subjects. Pupil responses in healthy volunteers were recorded using a prototype binocular chromatic pupillometer (IdeaMedical, Copenhagen), which is capable of both direct and consensual pupillometry measurements. The device uses a pair of dual monochromatic narrow bandwidth LED light sources, red (660 nm) and blue (470 nm). Pupil light responses were recorded with infrared video cameras and analysed using custom-made circuitry and software. Subjects were randomized to receive light stimuli at either the right or left eye after 5 min of dark adaptation. Pupil light responses were recorded in both eyes for 10 seconds before illumination, during illumination and 50 seconds after illumination with red and blue light. Three variables were defined for the recorded pupil responses: the maximal constriction amplitude (CAmax ), the pupil response during illumination and postillumination pupil response (PIPR). No difference was found in the pupil response to blue light. With red light, the pupil response during illumination was slightly larger during consensual illumination compared to direct illumination (0.54 and 0.52, respectively, p = 0.027, paired Wilcoxon's test, n = 12), while no differences were found for CAmax or the PIPR. No difference was found between direct and consensual pupil response to either red or blue light in the postillumination period. Direct and consensual responses can readily be compared when examining the postillumination pupil response to blue light as estimation of photosensitive retinal ganglion cell activation. © 2015 Acta Ophthalmologica Scandinavica Foundation. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Visual laterality in dolphins: importance of the familiarity of stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blois-Heulin Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many studies of cerebral asymmetries in different species lead, on the one hand, to a better understanding of the functions of each cerebral hemisphere and, on the other hand, to develop an evolutionary history of hemispheric laterality. Our animal model is particularly interesting because of its original evolutionary path, i.e. return to aquatic life after a terrestrial phase. The rare reports concerning visual laterality of marine mammals investigated mainly discrimination processes. As dolphins are migrant species they are confronted to a changing environment. Being able to categorize new versus familiar objects would allow dolphins a rapid adaptation to novel environments. Visual laterality could be a prerequisite to this adaptability. To date, no study, to our knowledge, has analyzed the environmental factors that could influence their visual laterality. Results We investigated visual laterality expressed spontaneously at the water surface by a group of five common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in response to various stimuli. The stimuli presented ranged from very familiar objects (known and manipulated previously to familiar objects (known but never manipulated to unfamiliar objects (unknown, never seen previously. At the group level, dolphins used their left eye to observe very familiar objects and their right eye to observe unfamiliar objects. However, eyes are used indifferently to observe familiar objects with intermediate valence. Conclusion Our results suggest different visual cerebral processes based either on the global shape of well-known objects or on local details of unknown objects. Moreover, the manipulation of an object appears necessary for these dolphins to construct a global representation of an object enabling its immediate categorization for subsequent use. Our experimental results pointed out some cognitive capacities of dolphins which might be crucial for their wild life given their

  17. Analyzing the User Behavior toward Electronic Commerce Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo-Romero, Carlota; Alarcón-del-Amo, María-del-Carmen; Gómez-Borja, Miguel-Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response paradigm this research analyzes the main differences between the effects of two types of web technologies: Verbal web technology (i.e., navigational structure as utilitarian stimulus) versus non-verbal web technology (music and presentation of products as hedonic stimuli). Specific webmosphere stimuli have not been examined yet as separate variables and their impact on internal and behavioral responses seems unknown. Therefore, the objective of this research consists in analyzing the impact of these web technologies –which constitute the web atmosphere or webmosphere of a website– on shopping human behavior (i.e., users’ internal states -affective, cognitive, and satisfaction- and behavioral responses – approach responses, and real shopping outcomes-) within the retail online store created by computer, taking into account some mediator variables (i.e., involvement, atmospheric responsiveness, and perceived risk). A 2 (“free” versus “hierarchical” navigational structure) × 2 (“on” versus “off” music) × 2 (“moving” versus “static” images) between-subjects computer experimental design is used to test empirically this research. In addition, an integrated methodology was developed allowing the simulation, tracking and recording of virtual user behavior within an online shopping environment. As main conclusion, this study suggests that the positive responses of online consumers might increase when they are allowed to freely navigate the online stores and their experience is enriched by animate gifts and music background. The effect caused by mediator variables modifies relatively the final shopping human behavior. PMID:27965549

  18. Anti-ulcerogenic activity of the root bark extract of the African laburnum “Cassia sieberiana” and its effect on the anti-oxidant defence system in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nartey Edmund T

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite the widespread use of roots of Cassia sieberiana in managing several health conditions including gastric ulcer disease, there is little scientific data to support the rational phytotherapeutics as an anti-ulcer agent. This paper reports an evaluation of the in vivo anti-oxidant properties of an aqueous root bark extract of C. sieberiana in experimental gastric ulcer rats in a bid to elucidate its mechanism of action. Methods Fisher 344 (F344 rats received pretreatment of C. sieberiana root bark extract (500, 750, and 1000 mg/kg body wt. for 7 days after which there was induction of gastric injury with absolute ethanol. The mean ulcer index (MUI was calculated and serum total anti-oxidant level determined. Gastric mucosal tissues were prepared and the activity level of the enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD, catalase (CAT, glutathione peroxidase (GPx and myeloperoxidase (MPO were measured together with the level of lipid hydroperoxides (LPO. Statistical difference between treatment groups was analysed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA followed by Dunnett’s post hoc t test. Statistical significance was calculated at P Results The administration of ethanol triggered severe acute gastric ulcer and pretreatment with C. sieberiana root bark extract significantly and dose dependently protected against this effect. The root bark extract also dose dependently and significantly inhibited the ethanol induced decrease in activity levels of the enzymes SOD, CAT and GPx. The extract also inhibited the ethanol-induced decrease in level of serum total anti-oxidant capacity. The increase in ethanol-induced LPO level and MPO activity were also significantly and dose-dependently inhibited by the root bark extract. Conclusions The gastro-cytoprotective effect, inhibition of decrease in activity of gastric anti-oxidant enzymes and MPO as well as the inhibition of gastric LPO level suggests that one of the anti-ulcer mechanisms of

  19. Altered processing of rewarding and aversive basic taste stimuli in symptomatic women with anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa: An fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monteleone, Alessio Maria; Monteleone, Palmiero; Esposito, Fabrizio; Prinster, Anna; Volpe, Umberto; Cantone, Elena; Pellegrino, Francesca; Canna, Antonietta; Milano, Walter; Aiello, Marco; Di Salle, Francesco; Maj, Mario

    2017-07-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have displayed a dysregulation in the way in which the brain processes pleasant taste stimuli in patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN). However, exactly how the brain processes disgusting basic taste stimuli has never been investigated, even though disgust plays a role in food intake modulation and AN and BN patients exhibit high disgust sensitivity. Therefore, we investigated the activation of brain areas following the administration of pleasant and aversive basic taste stimuli in symptomatic AN and BN patients compared to healthy subjects. Twenty underweight AN women, 20 symptomatic BN women and 20 healthy women underwent fMRI while tasting 0.292 M sucrose solution (sweet taste), 0.5 mM quinine hydrochloride solution (bitter taste) and water as a reference taste. In symptomatic AN and BN patients the pleasant sweet stimulus induced a higher activation in several brain areas than that induced by the aversive bitter taste. The opposite occurred in healthy controls. Moreover, compared to healthy controls, AN patients showed a decreased response to the bitter stimulus in the right amygdala and left anterior cingulate cortex, while BN patients showed a decreased response to the bitter stimulus in the right amygdala and left insula. These results show an altered processing of rewarding and aversive taste stimuli in ED patients, which may be relevant for understanding the pathophysiology of AN and BN. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Skin-transmitted pathogens and the heebie jeebies: evidence for a subclass of disgust stimuli that evoke a qualitatively unique emotional response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, Khandis R; Yih, Jennifer; Zhao, Kun; Sung, Billy; Harmon-Jones, Cindy

    2017-09-01

    Skin-transmitted pathogens have threatened humans since ancient times. We investigated whether skin-transmitted pathogens were a subclass of disgust stimuli that evoked an emotional response that was related to, but distinct from, disgust and fear. We labelled this response "the heebie jeebies". In Study 1, coding of 76 participants' experiences of disgust, fear, and the heebie jeebies showed that the heebie jeebies was elicited by unique stimuli which produced skin-crawling sensations and an urge to protect the skin. In Experiment 2,350 participants' responses to skin-transmitted pathogen, fear-inducing, and disgust-inducing vignettes showed that the vignettes elicited sensations and urges which loaded onto heebie jeebies, fear, and disgust factors, respectively. Experiment 3 largely replicated findings from Experiment 2 using video stimuli (178 participants). Results are consistent with the notion that skin-transmitted pathogens are a subclass of disgust stimuli which motivate behaviours that are functionally consistent with disgust yet qualitatively distinct.

  1. Visual and auditory stimuli associated with swallowing. An fMRI study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kawai, Takeshi; Watanabe, Yutaka; Tonogi, Morio; Yamane, Gen-yuki; Abe, Shinichi; Yamada, Yoshiaki; Callan, Akiko

    2009-01-01

    We focused on brain areas activated by audiovisual stimuli related to swallowing motions. In this study, three kinds of stimuli related to human swallowing movement (auditory stimuli alone, visual stimuli alone, or audiovisual stimuli) were presented to the subjects, and activated brain areas were measured using functional MRI (fMRI) and analyzed. When auditory stimuli alone were presented, the supplementary motor area was activated. When visual stimuli alone were presented, the premotor and primary motor areas of the left and right hemispheres and prefrontal area of the left hemisphere were activated. When audiovisual stimuli were presented, the prefrontal and premotor areas of the left and right hemispheres were activated. Activation of Broca's area, which would have been characteristic of mirror neuron system activation on presentation of motion images, was not observed; however, activation of brain areas related to swallowing motion programming and performance was verified for auditory, visual and audiovisual stimuli related to swallowing motion. These results suggest that audiovisual stimuli related to swallowing motion could be applied to the treatment of patients with dysphagia. (author)

  2. Perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli depends on perceived speed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice eTomassini

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available It is known that the perceived duration of visual stimuli is strongly influenced by speed: faster moving stimuli appear to last longer. To test whether this is a general property of sensory systems we asked participants to reproduce the duration of visual and tactile gratings, and visuo-tactile gratings moving at a variable speed (3.5 – 15 cm/s for three different durations (400, 600 and 800 ms. For both modalities, the apparent duration of the stimulus increased strongly with stimulus speed, more so for tactile than for visual stimuli. In addition, visual stimuli were perceived to last approximately 200 ms longer than tactile stimuli. The apparent duration of visuo-tactile stimuli lay between the unimodal estimates, as the Bayesian account predicts, but the bimodal precision of the reproduction did not show the theoretical improvement. A cross-modal speed-matching task revealed that visual stimuli were perceived to move faster than tactile stimuli. To test whether the large difference in the perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli resulted from the difference in their perceived speed, we repeated the time reproduction task with visual and tactile stimuli matched in apparent speed. This reduced, but did not completely eliminate the difference in apparent duration. These results show that for both vision and touch, perceived duration depends on speed, pointing to common strategies of time perception.

  3. Extracting Behaviorally Relevant Traits from Natural Stimuli: Benefits of Combinatorial Representations at the Accessory Olfactory Bulb.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anat Kahan

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available For many animals, chemosensation is essential for guiding social behavior. However, because multiple factors can modulate levels of individual chemical cues, deriving information about other individuals via natural chemical stimuli involves considerable challenges. How social information is extracted despite these sources of variability is poorly understood. The vomeronasal system provides an excellent opportunity to study this topic due to its role in detecting socially relevant traits. Here, we focus on two such traits: a female mouse's strain and reproductive state. In particular, we measure stimulus-induced neuronal activity in the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB in response to various dilutions of urine, vaginal secretions, and saliva, from estrus and non-estrus female mice from two different strains. We first show that all tested secretions provide information about a female's receptivity and genotype. Next, we investigate how these traits can be decoded from neuronal activity despite multiple sources of variability. We show that individual neurons are limited in their capacity to allow trait classification across multiple sources of variability. However, simple linear classifiers sampling neuronal activity from small neuronal ensembles can provide a substantial improvement over that attained with individual units. Furthermore, we show that some traits are more efficiently detected than others, and that particular secretions may be optimized for conveying information about specific traits. Across all tested stimulus sources, discrimination between strains is more accurate than discrimination of receptivity, and detection of receptivity is more accurate with vaginal secretions than with urine. Our findings highlight the challenges of chemosensory processing of natural stimuli, and suggest that downstream readout stages decode multiple behaviorally relevant traits by sampling information from distinct but overlapping populations of AOB neurons.

  4. Encoding of emotion-paired spatial stimuli in the rodent hippocampus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca eNalloor

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Rats can acquire the cognitive component of CS-US associations between sensory and aversive stimuli without a functional basolateral amygdala. Thus, other brain regions should support such associations. Some septal/dorsal CA1 (dCA1 neurons respond to both spatial stimuli and footshock, suggesting that dCA1 could be one such region. We report that, in both dorsal and ventral hippocampus, different neuronal ensembles express immediate-early genes when a place is experienced alone vs. when it is associated with foot shock. We assessed changes in the size and overlap of hippocampal neuronal ensembles activated by two behavioral events using a cellular imaging method, Arc/Homer1a catFISH. The control group (A-A experienced the same place twice, while the experimental group (A-CFC received the same training plus two foot shocks during the second event. During fear conditioning, A-CFC, compared to A-A, rats had a smaller ensemble size in dCA3, dCA1 and vCA3, but not vCA1. Additionally, A-CFC rats had a lower overlap score in dCA1 and vCA3. Locomotion did not correlate with ensemble size. Importantly, foot shocks delivered in a training paradigm that prevents establishing shock-context associations, did not induce significant Arc expression, rejecting the possibility that the observed changes in ensemble size and composition simply reflect experiencing a foot shock. Combined with data that Arc is necessary for lasting synaptic plasticity and long-term memory, the data suggests that Arc/H1a+ hippocampal neuronal ensembles encode aspects of fear conditioning beyond space and time. Rats, like humans, may use the hippocampus to create integrated episodic-like memory during fear conditioning.

  5. Subliminal presentation of emotionally negative vs positive primes increases the perceived beauty of target stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Era, Vanessa; Candidi, Matteo; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2015-11-01

    Emotions have a profound influence on aesthetic experiences. Studies using affective priming procedures demonstrate, for example, that inducing a conscious negative emotional state biases the perception of abstract stimuli towards the sublime (Eskine et al. Emotion 12:1071-1074, 2012. doi: 10.1037/a0027200). Moreover, subliminal happy facial expressions have a positive impact on the aesthetic evaluation of abstract art (Flexas et al. PLoS ONE 8:e80154, 2013). Little is known about how emotion influences aesthetic perception of non-abstract, representational stimuli, especially those that are particularly relevant for social behaviour, like human bodies. Here, we explore whether the subliminal presentation of emotionally charged visual primes modulates the explicit subjective aesthetic judgment of body images. Using a forward/backward masking procedure, we presented subliminally positive and negative, arousal-matched, emotional or neutral primes and measured their effect on the explicit evaluation of perceived beauty (high vs low) and emotion (positive vs negative) evoked by abstract and body images. We found that negative primes increased subjective aesthetic evaluations of target bodies or abstract images in comparison with positive primes. No influence of primes on the emotional dimension of the targets was found, thus ruling out an unspecific arousal effect and strengthening the link between emotional valence and aesthetic appreciation. More specifically, that subliminal negative primes increase beauty ratings compared to subliminal positive primes indicates a clear link between negative emotions and positive aesthetic evaluations and vice versa, suggesting a possible link between negative emotion and the experience of sublime in art. The study expands previous research by showing the effect of subliminal negative emotions on the subjective aesthetic evaluation not only of abstract but also of body images.

  6. tDCS over the left prefrontal cortex enhances cognitive control for positive affective stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderhasselt, Marie-Anne; De Raedt, Rudi; Brunoni, Andre R; Campanhã, Camila; Baeken, Chris; Remue, Jonathan; Boggio, Paulo S

    2013-01-01

    Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) is a neuromodulation technique with promising results for enhancing cognitive information processes. So far, however, research has mainly focused on the effects of tDCS on cognitive control operations for non-emotional material. Therefore, our aim was to investigate the effects on cognitive control considering negative versus positive material. For this sham-controlled, within-subjects study, we selected a homogeneous sample of twenty-five healthy participants. By using behavioral measures and event related potentials (ERP) as indexes, we aimed to investigate whether a single session of anodal tDCS of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) would have specific effects in enhancing cognitive control for positive and negative valenced stimuli. After tDCS over the left DLPFC (and not sham control stimulation), we observed more negative N450 amplitudes along with faster reaction times when inhibiting a habitual response to happy compared to sad facial expressions. Gender did not influence the effects of tDCS on cognitive control for emotional information. In line with the Valence Theory of side-lateralized activity, this stimulation protocol might have led to a left dominant (relative to right) prefrontal cortical activity, resulting in augmented cognitive control specifically for positive relative to negative stimuli. To verify that tDCS induces effects that are in line with all aspects of the well known Valence Theory, future research should investigate the effects of tDCS over the left vs. right DLPFC on cognitive control for emotional information.

  7. tDCS over the left prefrontal cortex enhances cognitive control for positive affective stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Anne Vanderhasselt

    Full Text Available Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS is a neuromodulation technique with promising results for enhancing cognitive information processes. So far, however, research has mainly focused on the effects of tDCS on cognitive control operations for non-emotional material. Therefore, our aim was to investigate the effects on cognitive control considering negative versus positive material. For this sham-controlled, within-subjects study, we selected a homogeneous sample of twenty-five healthy participants. By using behavioral measures and event related potentials (ERP as indexes, we aimed to investigate whether a single session of anodal tDCS of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC would have specific effects in enhancing cognitive control for positive and negative valenced stimuli. After tDCS over the left DLPFC (and not sham control stimulation, we observed more negative N450 amplitudes along with faster reaction times when inhibiting a habitual response to happy compared to sad facial expressions. Gender did not influence the effects of tDCS on cognitive control for emotional information. In line with the Valence Theory of side-lateralized activity, this stimulation protocol might have led to a left dominant (relative to right prefrontal cortical activity, resulting in augmented cognitive control specifically for positive relative to negative stimuli. To verify that tDCS induces effects that are in line with all aspects of the well known Valence Theory, future research should investigate the effects of tDCS over the left vs. right DLPFC on cognitive control for emotional information.

  8. Flory-type theories of polymer chains under different external stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budkov, Yu A.; Kiselev, M. G.

    2018-01-01

    In this Review, we present a critical analysis of various applications of the Flory-type theories to a theoretical description of the conformational behavior of single polymer chains in dilute polymer solutions under a few external stimuli. Different theoretical models of flexible polymer chains in the supercritical fluid are discussed and analysed. Different points of view on the conformational behavior of the polymer chain near the liquid-gas transition critical point of the solvent are presented. A theoretical description of the co-solvent-induced coil-globule transitions within the implicit-solvent-explicit-co-solvent models is discussed. Several explicit-solvent-explicit-co-solvent theoretical models of the coil-to-globule-to-coil transition of the polymer chain in a mixture of good solvents (co-nonsolvency) are analysed and compared with each other. Finally, a new theoretical model of the conformational behavior of the dielectric polymer chain under the external constant electric field in the dilute polymer solution with an explicit account for the many-body dipole correlations is discussed. The polymer chain collapse induced by many-body dipole correlations of monomers in the context of statistical thermodynamics of dielectric polymers is analysed.

  9. Induction of Live Cell Phagocytosis by a Specific Combination of Inflammatory Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takamasa Ishidome

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Conditions of severe hyper-inflammation can lead to uncontrolled activation of macrophages, and the ensuing phagocytosis of live cells. However, relationships between inflammatory stimuli and uncontrolled phagocytosis of live cells by macrophages are poorly understood. To identify mediators of this process, we established phagocytosis assays of live cells by stimulating macrophages with CpG DNA, interferon-γ, and anti-interleukin-10 receptor antibody. In this model, various cell surface receptors were upregulated on macrophages, and phagocytosis of live cells was induced in a Rac1-dependent manner. Subsequent inhibition of the ICAM-1, VCAM-1, and both of these receptors abolished in vitro and in vivo phagocytosis of live T cells, myeloid cells, and B cells, respectively. Specifically, the reduction in lymphocyte numbers due to in vivo activation of macrophages was ameliorated in Icam-1-deficient mice. In addition, overexpression of ICAM-1 or VCAM-1 in non-phagocytic NIH3T3 cells led to active phagocytosis of live cells. These data indicate molecular mechanisms underlying live cell phagocytosis induced by hyper-inflammation, and this experimental model will be useful to clarify the pathophysiological mechanisms of hemophagocytosis and to indicate therapeutic targets.

  10. Telomerase Activation in Atherosclerosis and Induction of Telomerase Reverse Transcriptase Expression by Inflammatory Stimuli in Macrophages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gizard, Florence; Heywood, Elizabeth B.; Findeisen, Hannes M.; Zhao, Yue; Jones, Karrie L.; Cudejko, Cèline; Post, Ginell R.; Staels, Bart; Bruemmer, Dennis

    2010-01-01

    Objective Telomerase serves as a critical regulator of tissue renewal. Although telomerase activity is inducible in response to various environmental cues, it remains unknown whether telomerase is activated during the inflammatory remodeling underlying atherosclerosis formation. To address this question, we investigated in the present study the regulation of telomerase in macrophages and during atherosclerosis development in LDL-receptor-deficient mice. Methods and Results We demonstrate that inflammatory stimuli activate telomerase in macrophages by inducing the expression of the catalytic subunit telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT). Reporter and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays identified a previously unrecognized NF-κB response element in the TERT promoter, to which NF-κB is recruited during inflammation. Inhibition of NF-κB signaling completely abolished the induction of TERT expression, characterizing TERT as a bona fide NF-κB target gene. Furthermore, functional experiments revealed that TERT-deficiency results in a senescent cell phenotype. Finally, we demonstrate high levels of TERT expression in macrophages of human atherosclerotic lesions and establish that telomerase is activated during atherosclerosis development in LDL-receptor-deficient mice. Conclusion These results characterize TERT as a previously unrecognized NF-κB target gene in macrophages and demonstrate that telomerase is activated during atherosclerosis. This induction of TERT expression prevents macrophage senescence and may have important implications for the development of atherosclerosis. PMID:21106948

  11. Synthesis of novel 1,2,3-triazole based benzoxazolinones: their TNF-α based molecular docking with in-vivo anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive activities and ulcerogenic risk evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haider, Saqlain; Alam, M Sarwar; Hamid, Hinna; Shafi, Syed; Nargotra, Amit; Mahajan, Priya; Nazreen, Syed; Kalle, Arunasree M; Kharbanda, Chetna; Ali, Yakub; Alam, Aftab; Panda, Amulya K

    2013-01-01

    A library of novel bis-heterocycles containing benzoxazolinone based 1,2,3-triazoles has been synthesized using click chemistry approach. The compound 3f exhibited potent selective COX-2 inhibition of 59.48% in comparison to standard drug celecoxib (66.36% inhibition). The compound 3i showed significant (p < 0.001, 50.95%), TNF-α inhibitory activity as compared to indomethacin (p < 0.001, 64.01%). The results of the carrageenan induced hind paw oedema showed that compounds 3a, 3f, 3i, 3o, and 3e exhibited potent anti-inflammatory activity in comparison to Indomethacin. The molecular docking studies revealed that 3i exhibits strong inhibitory effect due to the extra stability of the complex because of an extra π-π bond. The histopathology report showed that none of the compounds caused gastric ulceration. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  12. P1 and N170 components distinguish human-like and animal-like makeup stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Shuwei; Luo, Wenbo; He, Weiqi; Chen, Xu; Luo, Yuejia

    2013-06-19

    This study used event-related potentials to investigate the sensitivity of P1 and N170 components to human-like and animal-like makeup stimuli, which were derived from pictures of Peking opera characters. As predicted, human-like makeup stimuli elicited larger P1 and N170 amplitudes than did animal-like makeup stimuli. Interestingly, a right hemisphere advantage was observed for human-like but not for animal-like makeup stimuli. Dipole source analyses of 130-200-ms window showed that the bilateral fusiform face area may contribute to the differential sensitivity of the N170 component in response to human-like and animal-like makeup stimuli. The present study suggests that the amplitudes of both the P1 and the N170 are sensitive for the mouth component of face-like stimuli.

  13. Opposing Subjective Temporal Experiences in Response to Unpredictable and Predictable Fear-Relevant Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian Cui

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have found that the durations of fear-relevant stimuli were overestimated compared to those of neutral stimuli, even when the fear-relevant stimuli were only anticipated. The current study aimed to investigate the effect of the predictability of fear-relevant stimuli on sub-second temporal estimations. In Experiments 1a and 1b, a randomized design was employed to render the emotional valence of each trial unpredictable. In Experiments 2a and 2b, we incorporated a block design and a cueing paradigm, respectively, to render the emotional stimuli predictable. Compared with the neutral condition, the estimated blank interval was judged as being shorter under the unpredictable fear-relevant condition, while it was judged as being longer under the predictable fear-relevant condition. In other words, the unpredictable and predictable fear-relevant stimuli led to opposing temporal distortions. These results demonstrated that emotions modulate interval perception during different time processing stages.

  14. When goals conflict with values: counterproductive attentional and oculomotor capture by reward-related stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Pelley, Mike E; Pearson, Daniel; Griffiths, Oren; Beesley, Tom

    2015-02-01

    Attention provides the gateway to cognition, by selecting certain stimuli for further analysis. Recent research demonstrates that whether a stimulus captures attention is not determined solely by its physical properties, but is malleable, being influenced by our previous experience of rewards obtained by attending to that stimulus. Here we show that this influence of reward learning on attention extends to task-irrelevant stimuli. In a visual search task, certain stimuli signaled the magnitude of available reward, but reward delivery was not contingent on responding to those stimuli. Indeed, any attentional capture by these critical distractor stimuli led to a reduction in the reward obtained. Nevertheless, distractors signaling large reward produced greater attentional and oculomotor capture than those signaling small reward. This counterproductive capture by task-irrelevant stimuli is important because it demonstrates how external reward structures can produce patterns of behavior that conflict with task demands, and similar processes may underlie problematic behavior directed toward real-world rewards.

  15. Testing the race model inequality in redundant stimuli with variable onset asynchrony

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gondan, Matthias

    2009-01-01

    distributions of response times for the single-modality stimuli. It has been derived for synchronous stimuli and for stimuli with stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA). In most experiments with asynchronous stimuli, discrete SOA values are chosen and the race model inequality is separately tested for each SOA. Due...... to SOAs at which the violation of the race model prediction is expected to be large. In addition, the method enables data analysis for experiments in which stimuli are presented with SOA from a continuous distribution rather than in discrete steps.......In speeded response tasks with redundant signals, parallel processing of the signals is tested by the race model inequality. This inequality states that given a race of two signals, the cumulative distribution of response times for redundant stimuli never exceeds the sum of the cumulative...

  16. Negative emotional stimuli reduce contextual cueing but not response times in inefficient search

    OpenAIRE

    Kunar, Melina A.; Watson, Derrick G.; Cole, Louise (Researcher in Psychology); Cox, Angeline

    2014-01-01

    In visual search, previous work has shown that negative stimuli narrow the focus of attention and speed reaction times (RTs). This paper investigates these two effects by first asking whether negative emotional stimuli narrow the focus of attention to reduce the learning of a display context in a contextual cueing task and, second, whether exposure to negative stimuli also reduces RTs in inefficient search tasks. In Experiment 1, participants viewed either negative or neutral images (faces or...

  17. Immediate effect of subliminal priming with positive reward stimuli on standing balance in healthy individuals

    OpenAIRE

    Aoyama, Yasuhiro; Uchida, Hiroyuki; Sugi, Yasuyuki; Kawakami, Akinobu; Fujii, Miki; Kiso, Kanae; Kono, Ryota; Takebayashi, Takashi; Hirao, Kazuki

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background: Information received subconsciously can influence exercise performance; however, it remains unclear whether subliminal or supraliminal reward is more effective in improving standing balance ability when priming stimuli are subconsciously delivered. The present study aimed to compare the effects of subliminal priming-plus-subliminal reward stimuli (experimental) with subliminal priming-plus-supraliminal reward stimuli (control) on standing balance ability. Methods: This wa...

  18. Beyond arousal and valence: the importance of the biological versus social relevance of emotional stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Sakaki, Michiko; Niki, N.; Mather, M.

    2012-01-01

    The present study addressed the hypothesis that emotional stimuli relevant to survival or reproduction (biologically emotional stimuli) automatically affect cognitive processing (e.g., attention, memory), while those relevant to social life (socially emotional stimuli) require elaborative processing to modulate attention and memory. Results of our behavioral studies showed that (1) biologically emotional images hold attention more strongly than do socially emotional images, (2) memory for bio...

  19. Effects of inter- and intramodal selective attention to non-spatial visual stimuli: An event-related potential analysis.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Ruiter, M.B.; Kok, A.; van der Schoot, M.

    1998-01-01

    Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded to trains of rapidly presented auditory and visual stimuli. ERPs in conditions in which Ss attended to different features of visual stimuli were compared with ERPs to the same type of stimuli when Ss attended to different features of auditory stimuli,

  20. Transient rheology of stimuli responsive hydrogels: Integrating microrheology and microfluidics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Jun

    Stimuli-responsive hydrogels have diverse potential applications in the field of drug delivery, tissue engineering, agriculture, cosmetics, gene therapy, and as sensors and actuators due to their unique responsiveness to external signals, such as pH, temperature, and ionic strength. Understanding the responsiveness of hydrogel structure and rheology to these stimuli is essential for designing materials with desirable performance. However, no instrumentation and well-defined methodology are available to characterize the structural and rheological responses to rapid solvent changes. In this thesis, a new microrheology set-up is described, which allows us to quantitatively measure the transient rheological properties and microstructure of a variety of solvent-responsive complex fluids. The device was constructed by integrating particle tracking microrheology and microfluidics and offers unique experimental capabilities for performing solvent-reponse measurements on soft fragile materials without applying external shear forces. Transient analysis methods to quantitatively obtain rheological properties were also constructed, and guidelines for the trade-off between statistical validity and temporal resolution were developed to accurately capture physical transitions. Employing the new device and methodology, we successfully quantified the transient rheological and microstructural responses during gel formation and break-up, and viscosity changes of solvent-responsive complex fluids. The analysis method was expanded for heterogeneous samples, incorporating methods to quantify the microrheology of samples with broad distributions of individual particle dynamics. Transient microrheology measurements of fragile, heterogeneous, self-assembled block copolypeptide hydrogels revealed that solvent exchange via convective mixing and dialysis can lead to significantly different gel properties and that commonly applied sample preparation protocols for the characterization of soft

  1. Parallel search for conjunctions with stimuli in apparent motion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casco, C; Ganis, G

    1999-01-01

    A series of experiments was conducted to determine whether apparent motion tends to follow the similarity rule (i.e. is attribute-specific) and to investigate the underlying mechanism. Stimulus duration thresholds were measured during a two-alternative forced-choice task in which observers detected either the location or the motion direction of target groups defined by the conjunction of size and orientation. Target element positions were randomly chosen within a nominally defined rectangular subregion of the display (target region). The target region was presented either statically (followed by a 250 ms duration mask) or dynamically, displaced by a small distance (18 min of arc) from frame to frame. In the motion display, the position of both target and background elements was changed randomly from frame to frame within the respective areas to abolish spatial correspondence over time. Stimulus duration thresholds were lower in the motion than in the static task, indicating that target detection in the dynamic condition does not rely on the explicit identification of target elements in each static frame. Increasing the distractor-to-target ratio was found to reduce detectability in the static, but not in the motion task. This indicates that the perceptual segregation of the target is effortless and parallel with motion but not with static displays. The pattern of results holds regardless of the task or search paradigm employed. The detectability in the motion condition can be improved by increasing the number of frames and/or by reducing the width of the target area. Furthermore, parallel search in the dynamic condition can be conducted with both short-range and long-range motion stimuli. Finally, apparent motion of conjunctions is insufficient on its own to support location decision and is disrupted by random visual noise. Overall, these findings show that (i) the mechanism underlying apparent motion is attribute-specific; (ii) the motion system mediates temporal

  2. Selective processing of linguistic and pictorial food stimuli in females with anorexia and bulimia nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stormark, Kjell Morten; Torkildsen, Øivind

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated subjects with eating disorders' selective attention to linguistic and pictorial representations of food stimuli in a version of the Stroop color-naming task. If subjects with eating disorders' attention really are biased by food stimuli, one would expect equally delayed color-naming latencies to food pictures as previous studies have found to food words. Twenty females with eating disorders (anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or a combination of both) and 24 female controls identified the color of Stroop versions of linguistic and pictorial representations of color, food, emotional, and neutral stimuli. The eating disorder group was slower than the controls in identifying the color of all words (including the food words) and the pictures depicting food stimuli (but not any of the other pictures). The eating disorder group was also slower in identifying the color of both food and emotional than neutral stimuli, both for the linguistic and pictorial stimuli. These findings indicate that females with bulimia and anorexia nervosa's biased attention to food stimuli are not restricted to linguistic representations. The delayed responses to the emotional words and pictures suggest that processing of negative emotional stimuli, in addition to dysfunctional concerns about stimuli related to food and eating, is important in the maintenance of eating disorders.

  3. Alleged Approach-Avoidance Conflict for Food Stimuli in Binge Eating Disorder.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth J Leehr

    Full Text Available Food stimuli are omnipresent and naturally primary reinforcing stimuli. One explanation for the intake of high amounts of food in binge eating disorder (BED is a deviant valuation process. Valuation of food stimuli is supposed to influence approach or avoidance behaviour towards food. Focusing on self-reported and indirect (facial electromyography valuation process, motivational aspects in the processing of food stimuli were investigated.We compared an overweight sample with BED (BED+ with an overweight sample without BED (BED- and with normal weight controls (NWC regarding their self-reported and indirect (via facial electromyography valuation of food versus non-food stimuli.Regarding the self-reported valuation, the BED+ sample showed a significantly stronger food-bias compared to the BED- sample, as food stimuli were rated as significantly more positive than the non-food stimuli in the BED+ sample. This self-reported valuation pattern could not be displayed in the indirect valuation. Food stimuli evoked negative indirect valuation in all groups. The BED+ sample showed the plainest approach-avoidance conflict marked by a diverging self-reported (positive and indirect (negative valuation of food stimuli.BED+ showed a deviant self-reported valuation of food as compared to BED-. The valuation process of the BED+ sample seems to be characterized by a motivational ambivalence. This ambivalence should be subject of further studies and may be of potential use for therapeutic interventions.

  4. Interpretative bias in spider phobia: Perception and information processing of ambiguous schematic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haberkamp, Anke; Schmidt, Filipp

    2015-09-01

    This study investigates the interpretative bias in spider phobia with respect to rapid visuomotor processing. We compared perception, evaluation, and visuomotor processing of ambiguous schematic stimuli between spider-fearful and control participants. Stimuli were produced by gradually morphing schematic flowers into spiders. Participants rated these stimuli related to their perceptual appearance and to their feelings of valence, disgust, and arousal. Also, they responded to the same stimuli within a response priming paradigm that measures rapid motor activation. Spider-fearful individuals showed an interpretative bias (i.e., ambiguous stimuli were perceived as more similar to spiders) and rated spider-like stimuli as more unpleasant, disgusting, and arousing. However, we observed no differences between spider-fearful and control participants in priming effects for ambiguous stimuli. For non-ambiguous stimuli, we observed a similar enhancement for phobic pictures as has been reported previously for natural images. We discuss our findings with respect to the visual representation of morphed stimuli and to perceptual learning processes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Characterization of functional biopolymers under various external stimuli

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maleki, Atoosa

    2008-07-01

    Polymers are large molecules composed of repeating structural units connected by covalent chemical bonds. Biopolymers are a class of polymers produced by living organisms, which exhibit both biocompatible and biodegradable properties. The behavior of a biopolymer in solution is strongly dependent on the chemical and physical structure of the polymer chain, as well as external environmental conditions. To improve biopolymers in the direction of higher performance and better functionality, understanding of their physicochemical behavior and their response to external stimuli are of great importance. Rheology, rheo-small angle light scattering, dynamic light scattering, small angle neutron scattering, and asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation were utilized in this thesis to investigate the properties of hydroxyethyl cellulose and its hydrophobically modified analogue, as well as dextran, hyaluronan, and mucin under different conditions such as temperature, solvent, mechanical stress and strain, and radiation. Different novel hydrogels were prepared by using various chemical cross-linking agents. Specific features of these macromolecules provide them to be used as 'functional' materials, e.g., sensors, actuators, personal care products, enhanced oil recovery, and controlled drug delivery systems (author)

  6. Impaired Working Memory Updating for Emotional Stimuli in Depressed Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dandan; Xie, Hui; He, Zhenhong; Wei, Zhaoguo; Gu, Ruolei

    2018-01-01

    Although two previous studies have demonstrated that depressed individuals showed deficits in working memory (WM) updating of both negative and positive contents, the effects were confounded by shifting dysfunctions and the detailed neural mechanism associated with the failure in N-back task is not clear. Using a 2-back task, the current study examined the WM updating of positive, negative and neutral contents in depressed patients. It is found that depressed patients performed poorer than healthy controls only when updating positive material. Using event-related potential (ERP) technique, the current study also investigated the neural correlates of updating deficits in depression. According to previous studies, the n-back task was divided into three sub-processes, i.e., encoding, matching and maintaining. Our ERP results showed that depressed patients had smaller occipital P1 for positive material compared to healthy controls, indicating their insensitivity to positive items on early encoding stage. Besides, depressed patients had larger frontal P2 and parietal late positive potential (LPP) than healthy controls irrespective of the valence of the words, reflecting that patients are inefficient during matching (P2) and maintaining (LPP) processes. These two mechanisms (insufficient attention to positive stimuli and low efficiency in matching and maintaining) together lead to the deficits of WM updating in depression.

  7. The effects of anxiety upon attention allocation to affective stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waters, Allison M; Nitz, Ashley B; Craske, Michelle G; Johnson, Chris

    2007-04-01

    Pictures of emotionally aversive, neutral, and pleasant scenes were presented for 500 ms, followed by a probe presented in the same location (valid trials) or an alternate location (invalid trials) as the picture. Response-times to the probes were recorded in low (N=20) and high (N=27) trait anxious participants. Results revealed an overall negative cue validity effect of shorter reaction times (RTs) on invalid than valid trials, suggestive of an inhibition of return effect. Moreover, high trait anxious females showed a reduced negative cue validity effect for aversive pictures in comparison with neutral and pleasant pictures, suggestive of selective interference by the unpleasant material. By contrast, low trait anxious females showed an enhanced negative cue validity effect for aversive pictures relative to neutral and pleasant pictures, suggestive of attentional avoidance of the aversive content. The emotional content of picture cues did not significantly affect RTs in males, regardless of anxiety status. The results suggest that biased attention processes for aversive stimuli may contribute to the greater female propensity for anxiety disorders.

  8. Time of day affects implicit memory for unattended stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothen, Nicolas; Meier, Beat

    2016-11-01

    We investigated whether circadian arousal affects perceptual priming as a function of whether stimuli were attended or ignored during learning. We tested 160 participants on- and off-peak with regards to their circadian arousal. In the study phase, they were presented with two superimposed pictures in different colours. They had to name the pictures of one colour while ignoring the others. In the test phase, they were presented with the same and randomly intermixed new pictures. Each picture was presented in black colour in a fragment completion task. Priming was measured as the difference in fragmentation level at which the pictures from the study phase were named compared to the new pictures. Priming was stronger for attended than ignored pictures. Time of day affected priming only for ignored pictures, with stronger priming effects off-peak than on-peak. Thus, circadian arousal seems to favour the encoding of unattended materials specifically at off-peak. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. The neural response to maternal stimuli: an ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lili Wu

    Full Text Available Mothers are important to all humans. Research has established that maternal information affects individuals' cognition, emotion, and behavior. We measured event-related potentials (ERPs to examine attentional and evaluative processing of maternal stimuli while participants completed a Go/No-go Association Task that paired mother or others words with good or bad evaluative words. Behavioral data showed that participants responded faster to mother words paired with good than the mother words paired with bad but showed no difference in response to these others across conditions, reflecting a positive evaluation of mother. ERPs showed larger P200 and N200 in response to mother than in response to others, suggesting that mother attracted more attention than others. In the subsequent time window, mother in the mother + bad condition elicited a later and larger late positive potential (LPP than it did in the mother + good condition, but this was not true for others, also suggesting a positive evaluation of mother. These results suggest that people differentiate mother from others during initial attentional stage, and evaluative mother positively during later stage.

  10. Sensory sensitivity and identification and hedonic assessment ofolfactory stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Borys Ruszpel

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Conducted research had an exploratory character. It was focused on connections between temperament and olfactory functioning – in particular, identification and affective assessment of olfactory stimuli. Main research question dealt with potential correlations between sensory sensitivity (dimension of temperamental questionnaire FCZ‑KT with declarative and objective ability to identify presented odours and their assessment. Fifty four schoolgirls from one of the Warsaw sec‑ ondary schools participated in the research and they were asked for filling in the FCZ‑KT questionnaire and evaluating each of 16 smell samples. Analyses revealed a significant positive correlation between declared familiarity and accurate odours’ identification (odours that were subjectively known were recognized more accurately than unknown and a posi‑ tive correlation between declared familiarity and affective assessment (odours that were known were assessed as more pleasant than unknown. Sensory sensitivity was not correlated neither with declarative nor real ability to identify smells, however sensory sensitivity was positively correlated with affective assessment (the higher scores on sensory sensitivity dimension, the more pleasantly assessed odours in general. Analyses revealed a number of connections between other dimensions of FCZ‑KT questionnaire (perseverance, liveliness, stamina and the ability (both objective and subjective to correctly identify odours which were most difficult to recognize. Completed project might be perceived as a starting point for further research concerning relationships between temperament, olfactory functioning, and food preferences among patients diagnosed with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and obesity.

  11. Pressurized transient otoacoustic emissions measured using click and chirp stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keefe, Douglas H; Patrick Feeney, M; Hunter, Lisa L; Fitzpatrick, Denis F; Sanford, Chris A

    2018-01-01

    Transient-evoked otoacoustic emission (TEOAE) responses were measured in normal-hearing adult ears over frequencies from 0.7 to 8 kHz, and analyzed with reflectance/admittance data to measure absorbed sound power and the tympanometric peak pressure (TPP). The mean TPP was close to ambient. TEOAEs were measured in the ear canal at ambient pressure, TPP, and fixed air pressures from 150 to -200 daPa. Both click and chirp stimuli were used to elicit TEOAEs, in which the incident sound pressure level was constant across frequency. TEOAE levels were similar at ambient and TPP, and for frequencies from 0.7 to 2.8 kHz decreased with increasing positive and negative pressures. At 4-8 kHz, TEOAE levels were larger at positive pressures. This asymmetry is possibly related to changes in mechanical transmission through the ossicular chain. The mean TEOAE group delay did not change with pressure, although small changes were observed in the mean instantaneous frequency and group spread. Chirp TEOAEs measured in an adult ear with Eustachian tube dysfunction and TPP of -165 daPa were more robust at TPP than at ambient. Overall, results demonstrate the feasibility and clinical potential of measuring TEOAEs at fixed pressures in the ear canal, which provide additional information relative to TEOAEs measured at ambient pressure.

  12. Pattern transformations in periodic cellular solids under external stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, K.; Zhao, X. W.; Duan, H. L.; Karihaloo, B. L.; Wang, J.

    2011-04-01

    The structural patterns of periodic cellular materials play an important role in their properties. Here, we investigate how these patterns transform dramatically under external stimuli in simple periodic cellular structures that include a nanotube bundle and a millimeter-size plastic straw bundle. Under gradual hydrostatic straining up to 20%, the cross-section of the single walled carbon nanotube bundle undergoes several pattern transformations, while an amazing new hexagram pattern is triggered from the circular shape when the strain of 20% is applied suddenly in one step. Similar to the nanotube bundle, the circular plastic straw bundle is transformed into a hexagonal pattern on heating by conduction through a baseplate but into a hexagram pattern when heated by convection. Besides the well-known elastic buckling, we find other mechanisms of pattern transformation at different scales; these include the minimization of the surface energy at the macroscale or of the van der Waals energy at the nanoscale and the competition between the elastic energy of deformation and either the surface energy at the macroscale or the van der Waals energy at the nanoscale. The studies of the pattern transformations of periodic porous materials offer new insights into the fabrication of novel materials and devices with tailored properties.

  13. Investigating the influence of haemodynamic stimuli on intracranial aneurysm inception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Haoyu; Selimovic, Alisa; Thompson, Harry; Chiarini, Alessandro; Penrose, Justin; Ventikos, Yiannis; Watton, Paul N

    2013-07-01

    We propose a novel method to reconstruct the hypothetical geometry of the healthy vasculature prior to intracranial aneurysm (IA) formation: a Frenet frame is calculated along the skeletonization of the arterial geometry; upstream and downstream boundaries of the aneurysmal segment are expressed in terms of the local Frenet frame basis vectors; the hypothetical healthy geometry is then reconstructed by propagating a closed curve along the skeleton using the local Frenet frames so that the upstream boundary is smoothly morphed into the downstream boundary. This methodology takes into account the tortuosity of the arterial vasculature and requires minimal user subjectivity. The method is applied to 22 clinical cases depicting IAs. Computational fluid dynamic simulations of the vasculature without IA are performed and the haemodynamic stimuli in the location of IA formation are examined. We observe that locally elevated wall shear stress (WSS) and gradient oscillatory number (GON) are highly correlated (20/22 for WSS and 19/22 for GON) with regions susceptible to sidewall IA formation whilst haemodynamic indices associated with the oscillation of the WSS vectors have much lower correlations.

  14. The Hv1 proton channel responds to mechanical stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathak, Medha M; Tran, Truc; Hong, Liang; Joós, Béla; Morris, Catherine E; Tombola, Francesco

    2016-11-01

    The voltage-gated proton channel, Hv1, is expressed in tissues throughout the body and plays important roles in pH homeostasis and regulation of NADPH oxidase. Hv1 operates in membrane compartments that experience strong mechanical forces under physiological or pathological conditions. In microglia, for example, Hv1 activity is potentiated by cell swelling and causes an increase in brain damage after stroke. The channel complex consists of two proton-permeable voltage-sensing domains (VSDs) linked by a cytoplasmic coiled-coil domain. Here, we report that these VSDs directly respond to mechanical stimuli. We find that membrane stretch facilitates Hv1 channel opening by increasing the rate of activation and shifting the steady-state activation curve to less depolarized potentials. In the presence of a transmembrane pH gradient, membrane stretch alone opens the channel without the need for strong depolarizations. The effect of membrane stretch persists for several minutes after the mechanical stimulus is turned off, suggesting that the channel switches to a "facilitated" mode in which opening occurs more readily and then slowly reverts to the normal mode observed in the absence of membrane stretch. Conductance simulations with a six-state model recapitulate all the features of the channel's response to mechanical stimulation. Hv1 mechanosensitivity thus provides a mechanistic link between channel activation in microglia and brain damage after stroke. © 2016 Pathak et al.

  15. Neural markers of a greater female responsiveness to social stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zani Alberto

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is fMRI evidence that women are neurally predisposed to process infant laughter and crying. Other findings show that women might be more empathic and sensitive than men to emotional facial expressions. However, no gender difference in the brain responses to persons and unanimated scenes has hitherto been demonstrated. Results Twenty-four men and women viewed 220 images portraying persons or landscapes and ERPs were recorded from 128 sites. In women, but not in men, the N2 component (210–270 was much larger to persons than to scenes. swLORETA showed significant bilateral activation of FG (BA19/37 in both genders when viewing persons as opposed to scenes. Only women showed a source of activity in the STG and in the right MOG (extra-striate body area, EBA, and only men in the left parahippocampal area (PPA. Conclusion A significant gender difference was found in activation of the left and right STG (BA22 and the cingulate cortex for the subtractive condition women minus men, thus indicating that women might have a greater preference or interest for social stimuli (faces and persons.

  16. Exogenous (automatic) attention to emotional stimuli: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carretié, Luis

    2014-12-01

    Current knowledge on the architecture of exogenous attention (also called automatic, bottom-up, or stimulus-driven attention, among other terms) has been mainly obtained from studies employing neutral, anodyne stimuli. Since, from an evolutionary perspective, exogenous attention can be understood as an adaptive tool for rapidly detecting salient events, reorienting processing resources to them, and enhancing processing mechanisms, emotional events (which are, by definition, salient for the individual) would seem crucial to a comprehensive understanding of this process. This review, focusing on the visual modality, describes 55 experiments in which both emotional and neutral irrelevant distractors are presented at the same time as ongoing task targets. Qualitative and, when possible, meta-analytic descriptions of results are provided. The most conspicuous result is that, as confirmed by behavioral and/or neural indices, emotional distractors capture exogenous attention to a significantly greater extent than do neutral distractors. The modulatory effects of the nature of distractors capturing attention, of the ongoing task characteristics, and of individual differences, previously proposed as mediating factors, are also described. Additionally, studies reviewed here provide temporal and spatial information-partially absent in traditional cognitive models-on the neural basis of preattention/evaluation, reorienting, and sensory amplification, the main subprocesses involved in exogenous attention. A model integrating these different levels of information is proposed. The present review, which reveals that there are several key issues for which experimental data are surprisingly scarce, confirms the relevance of including emotional distractors in studies on exogenous attention.

  17. Vascular Adaptation to Exercise in Humans: Role of Hemodynamic Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Daniel J.; Hopman, Maria T. E.; Padilla, Jaume; Laughlin, M. Harold; Thijssen, Dick H. J.

    2017-01-01

    On the 400th anniversary of Harvey's Lumleian lectures, this review focuses on “hemodynamic” forces associated with the movement of blood through arteries in humans and the functional and structural adaptations that result from repeated episodic exposure to such stimuli. The late 20th century discovery that endothelial cells modify arterial tone via paracrine transduction provoked studies exploring the direct mechanical effects of blood flow and pressure on vascular function and adaptation in vivo. In this review, we address the impact of distinct hemodynamic signals that occur in response to exercise, the interrelationships between these signals, the nature of the adaptive responses that manifest under different physiological conditions, and the implications for human health. Exercise modifies blood flow, luminal shear stress, arterial pressure, and tangential wall stress, all of which can transduce changes in arterial function, diameter, and wall thickness. There are important clinical implications of the adaptation that occurs as a consequence of repeated hemodynamic stimulation associated with exercise training in humans, including impacts on atherosclerotic risk in conduit arteries, the control of blood pressure in resistance vessels, oxygen delivery and diffusion, and microvascular health. Exercise training studies have demonstrated that direct hemodynamic impacts on the health of the artery wall contribute to the well-established decrease in cardiovascular risk attributed to physical activity. PMID:28151424

  18. Differences in cortical response to acupressure and electroacupuncture stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vangel Mark G

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background FMRI studies focus on sub-cortical effects of acupuncture stimuli. The purpose of this study was to assess changes in primary somatosensory (S1 activity over the course of different types of acupuncture stimulation. We used whole head magnetoencephalography (MEG to map S1 brain response during 15 minutes of electroacupuncture (EA and acupressure (AP. We further assessed how brain response changed during the course of stimulation. Results Evoked brain response to EA differed from AP in its temporal dynamics by showing clear contralateral M20/M30 peaks while the latter demonstrated temporal dispersion. Both EA and AP demonstrated significantly decreased response amplitudes following five minutes of stimulation. However, the latency of these decreases were earlier in EA (~30 ms post-stimulus than AP (> 100 ms. Time-frequency responses demonstrated early onset, event related synchronization (ERS, within the gamma band at ~70-130 ms and the theta band at ~50-200 ms post-stimulus. A prolonged event related desynchronization (ERD of alpha and beta power occurred at ~100-300 ms post-stimulus. There was decreased beta ERD at ~100-300 ms over the course of EA, but not AP. Conclusion Both EA and AP demonstrated conditioning of SI response. In conjunction with their subcortical effects on endogenous pain regulation, these therapies show potential for affecting S1 processing and possibly altering maladaptive neuroplasticity. Thus, further investigation in neuropathic populations is needed.

  19. Aboveground mechanical stimuli affect belowground plant-plant communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elhakeem, Ali; Markovic, Dimitrije; Broberg, Anders; Anten, Niels P R; Ninkovic, Velemir

    2018-01-01

    Plants can detect the presence of their neighbours and modify their growth behaviour accordingly. But the extent to which this neighbour detection is mediated by abiotic stressors is not well known. In this study we tested the acclimation response of Zea mays L. seedlings through belowground interactions to the presence of their siblings exposed to brief mechano stimuli. Maize seedling simultaneously shared the growth solution of touched plants or they were transferred to the growth solution of previously touched plants. We tested the growth preferences of newly germinated seedlings toward the growth solution of touched (T_solution) or untouched plants (C_solution). The primary root of the newly germinated seedlings grew significantly less towards T_solution than to C_solution. Plants transferred to T_solution allocated more biomass to shoots and less to roots. While plants that simultaneously shared their growth solution with the touched plants produced more biomass. Results show that plant responses to neighbours can be modified by aboveground abiotic stress to those neighbours and suggest that these modifications are mediated by belowground interactions.

  20. Aboveground mechanical stimuli affect belowground plant-plant communication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Elhakeem

    Full Text Available Plants can detect the presence of their neighbours and modify their growth behaviour accordingly. But the extent to which this neighbour detection is mediated by abiotic stressors is not well known. In this study we tested the acclimation response of Zea mays L. seedlings through belowground interactions to the presence of their siblings exposed to brief mechano stimuli. Maize seedling simultaneously shared the growth solution of touched plants or they were transferred to the growth solution of previously touched plants. We tested the growth preferences of newly germinated seedlings toward the growth solution of touched (T_solution or untouched plants (C_solution. The primary root of the newly germinated seedlings grew significantly less towards T_solution than to C_solution. Plants transferred to T_solution allocated more biomass to shoots and less to roots. While plants that simultaneously shared their growth solution with the touched plants produced more biomass. Results show that plant responses to neighbours can be modified by aboveground abiotic stress to those neighbours and suggest that these modifications are mediated by belowground interactions.

  1. Brief Emotion Regulation Training Facilitates Arousal Control During Sexual Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Overveld, Mark; Borg, Charmaine

    2015-01-01

    Disgust, a negative emotion which evokes strong behavioral avoidance tendencies, has been associated with sexual dysfunction. Recently, it was postulated that healthy sexual functioning requires a balance between excitatory (increased sexual arousal) and inhibitory processes (lowered disgust levels). This suggests that amplification of excitatory processes (like sexual arousal) could be a valuable addition to treatments for affect-based sexual dysfunctions. The major aim of the present study was to establish whether up-regulation could effectively enhance arousal levels during sexual stimuli, and whether such a training would simultaneously reduce disgust. Students (N = 163, mean age = 20.73 years, SD = 2.35) were trained in up-regulation of affect using either a sexual arousal film (i.e., female-friendly erotic movie) or a threat arousal film clip (i.e., horror movie), while control groups viewed the films without training instructions. Following this, participants viewed and rated state emotions during a series of pictures (sexual, disgusting, or neutral). Up-regulation of mood successfully enhanced general arousal in both groups, yet these arousal levels were not paralleled by reductions in disgust. Overall, the findings indicate that emotion regulation training by maximizing positive affect and general arousal could be an effective instrument to facilitate affect-related disturbances in sexual dysfunctions.

  2. Learning quadratic receptive fields from neural responses to natural stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajan, Kanaka; Marre, Olivier; Tkačik, Gašper

    2013-07-01

    Models of neural responses to stimuli with complex spatiotemporal correlation structure often assume that neurons are selective for only a small number of linear projections of a potentially high-dimensional input. In this review, we explore recent modeling approaches where the neural response depends on the quadratic form of the input rather than on its linear projection, that is, the neuron is sensitive to the local covariance structure of the signal preceding the spike. To infer this quadratic dependence in the presence of arbitrary (e.g., naturalistic) stimulus distribution, we review several inference methods, focusing in particular on two information theory-based approaches (maximization of stimulus energy and of noise entropy) and two likelihood-based approaches (Bayesian spike-triggered covariance and extensions of generalized linear models). We analyze the formal relationship between the likelihood-based and information-based approaches to demonstrate how they lead to consistent inference. We demonstrate the practical feasibility of these procedures by using model neurons responding to a flickering variance stimulus.

  3. Protective effects of ginger and marshmallow extracts on indomethacin-induced peptic ulcer in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaghlool, Sameh S; Shehata, Basim A; Abo-Seif, Ali A; Abd El-Latif, Hekma A

    2015-01-01

    Gastric ulcer is one of the most serious diseases. Most classic treatment lines produce adverse drug reactions. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the protective effects of two natural extracts, namely ginger and marshmallow extracts, on indomethacin-induced gastric ulcer in rats. Animals were divided into five groups; a normal control group, an ulcer control group, and three treatment groups receiving famotidine (20 mg/kg), ginger (100 mg/kg), and marshmallow (100 mg/kg). Treatments were given orally on a daily basis for 14 days prior to a single intra-peritoneal administration of indomethacin (20 mg/kg). Indomethacin administration resulted in significant ulcerogenic effect evidenced by significant elevations in ulcer number, ulcer index, and blood superoxide dismutase activity accompanied by significant decreases in gastric mucosal nitric oxide and glutathione levels. In addition, elevations in gastric mucosal lipid peroxides and histamine content were observed. Alternatively, pretreatment with famotidine, ginger or marshmallow significantly corrected macroscopic and biochemical findings, supported microscopically by results of histopathological study. These results demonstrate that administration of either ginger or marshmallow extract could protect against indomethacin-induced peptic ulcer in rats presumably via their antioxidant properties and inhibition of histamine release.

  4. Presentation of Aural Stimuli to Newborns and Premature Infants: An Audiological Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassidy

    1999-01-01

    The purpose of this study was twofold: (a) to examine extant research in the field of music with premature and full term infants in order to identify protocols being used in the presentation of musical stimuli to neonates and (b) to use knowledge gleaned from audiology as a basis for suggesting a standardized protocol for use of musical stimuli with infants. Articles considered appropriate for inclusion in the analysis met the following criteria: (a) presented data for the effects of music on a dependent measure, (b) had subjects who were identified as either premature or term newborns receiving treatment after birth and prior to discharge from the hospital, and (c) used music for some or all of the aural stimuli. Articles (N = 20) were categorized by demographic information, types of aural stimuli, independent variables, dependent measures, and protocol used to present the musical stimuli. Of primary importance to this study was the protocol used in each study to present musical stimuli. Data regarding total duration of stimuli per day, longest duration of stimuli per day, method of stimuli presentation, placement of speakers, decibel level of stimuli, and where;he decibel level was measured reveal that there is no standard protocol being followed with regard to the presentation of aural stimuli. Recommendations include future research on (a) determining a minimum gestational age where music therapy may be appropriate, (b) determining the frequency spectrum perceived by a premature infant, (c) determining the decibel levels reaching the ear drum and assessing appropriate levels for minimum stimulation with maximum results, and (d) carefully considering the method of stimulus presentation as it will have an impact on the decibel level reaching the ear drum of these infants.

  5. Effects of External Stimuli on Microstructure-Property Relationship at the Nanoscale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Baoming

    nanocrystalline metals as a standard linear elastic solid and our experimental results on 100 nm thick (average grain size 10 nm) freestanding nickel specimens at temperatures from 300 to 425 °K support this hypothesis reasonably well. The viscosity of solid nickel ranged from 3.3x1013 Pa.s to 1.5x1013 Pa.s at these temperatures, which are about two orders of magnitude smaller than that expected for metals and are also less sensitive to temperature compared to bulk. The second case study involved a novel concept of electro-graphitization that induces synergistic thermo-electro-mechanical fields to graphitize carbon nanofibers at around 800 °C temperature and below 106 A/cm 2 current density. In comparison, conventional graphitization of carbon nanofiber requires very high temperatures (> 2800 °C). A more convincing study on the pronounced role of stimuli on microstructure-properties is the transformation of amorphous materials to nano or microcrystalline form. This is because typically the energy barrier for this kind of transformation is very high, requiring extreme conditions to initiate such transformation. (Abstract shortened by ProQuest.).

  6. Differential Memory of Picture and Word Stimuli in a Paired-Associate Learning Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartels, Laura Grand; Feinbloom, Jessica

    Ten concrete nouns represented in either a pictorial or a linguistic mode and accompanied by ten nonsense syllables were shown to 77 college students in a study of how pictorial stimuli varied in recall and recognition tasks. The group receiving pictorial stimuli recalled and recognized significantly more nonsense syllables than did the group…

  7. Attentional bias for positive emotional stimuli: A meta-analytic investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pool, Eva; Brosch, Tobias; Delplanque, Sylvain; Sander, David

    2016-01-01

    Despite an initial focus on negative threatening stimuli, researchers have more recently expanded the investigation of attentional biases toward positive rewarding stimuli. The present meta-analysis systematically compared attentional bias for positive compared with neutral visual stimuli across 243 studies (N = 9,120 healthy participants) that used different types of attentional paradigms and positive stimuli. Factors were tested that, as postulated by several attentional models derived from theories of emotion, might modulate this bias. Overall, results showed a significant, albeit modest (Hedges' g = .258), attentional bias for positive as compared with neutral stimuli. Moderator analyses revealed that the magnitude of this attentional bias varied as a function of arousal and that this bias was significantly larger when the emotional stimulus was relevant to specific concerns (e.g., hunger) of the participants compared with other positive stimuli that were less relevant to the participants' concerns. Moreover, the moderator analyses showed that attentional bias for positive stimuli was larger in paradigms that measure early, rather than late, attentional processing, suggesting that attentional bias for positive stimuli occurs rapidly and involuntarily. Implications for theories of emotion and attention are discussed. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. How stimuli presentation format affects visual attention and choice outcomes in choice experiments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orquin, Jacob Lund; Mueller Loose, Simone

    This study analyses visual attention and part-worth utilities in choice experiments across three different choice stimuli presentation formats. Visual attention and choice behaviour in discrete choice experiments are found to be strongly affected by stimuli presentation format. These results...

  9. Brief report: Inhibitory control of socially relevant stimuli in children with high functioning autism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geurts, H.M.; Begeer, S.; Stockman, L.

    2009-01-01

    The current study explored whether inhibitory control deficits in high functioning autism (HFA) emerged when socially relevant stimuli were used and whether arousal level affected the performance. A Go/NoGo paradigm, with socially relevant stimuli and varying presentation rates, was applied in 18

  10. EFFECTS OF THREE DIFFERENT STIMULI ON THE CREATIVITY OF CHILDREN'S COMPOSITIONS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MAY, FRANK B.; TABACHNICK, B. ROBERT

    THIS STUDY BEGAN AN ATTEMPT TO DETERMINE THE BASIC CHARACTERISTICS OF EFFECTIVE MOTIVATING STIMULI FOR USE IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL WRITING PROGRAMS. IN PARTICULAR, IT DEALT WITH THE EFFECTS OF ORGANIZED AND UNORGANIZED STIMULI ON THE CREATIVE WRITING ABILITY OF THIRD- AND SIXTH-GRADE STUDENTS. THE CHILDREN WERE DIVIDED INTO SIX GROUPS. ONE GROUP OF…

  11. Emotion Recognition in Animated Compared to Human Stimuli in Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosnan, Mark; Johnson, Hilary; Grawmeyer, Beate; Chapman, Emma; Benton, Laura

    2015-01-01

    There is equivocal evidence as to whether there is a deficit in recognising emotional expressions in Autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study compared emotion recognition in ASD in three types of emotion expression media (still image, dynamic image, auditory) across human stimuli (e.g. photo of a human face) and animated stimuli (e.g. cartoon…

  12. Attentional and Affective Processing of Sexual Stimuli in Women with Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brauer, Marieke; van Leeuwen, Matthijs; Janssen, Erick; Newhouse, Sarah K.; Heiman, Julia R.; Laan, Ellen

    2012-01-01

    Hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) is the most common sexual problem in women. From an incentive motivation perspective, HSDD may be the result of a weak association between sexual stimuli and rewarding experiences. As a consequence, these stimuli may either lose or fail to acquire a positive

  13. Natural stimuli improve auditory BCIs with respect to ergonomics and performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Höhne, Johannes; Krenzlin, Konrad; Dähne, Sven; Tangermann, Michael

    2012-08-01

    Moving from well-controlled, brisk artificial stimuli to natural and less-controlled stimuli seems counter-intuitive for event-related potential (ERP) studies. As natural stimuli typically contain a richer internal structure, they might introduce higher levels of variance and jitter in the ERP responses. Both characteristics are unfavorable for a good single-trial classification of ERPs in the context of a multi-class brain-computer interface (BCI) system, where the class-discriminant information between target stimuli and non-target stimuli must be maximized. For the application in an auditory BCI system, however, the transition from simple artificial tones to natural syllables can be useful despite the variance introduced. In the presented study, healthy users (N = 9) participated in an offline auditory nine-class BCI experiment with artificial and natural stimuli. It is shown that the use of syllables as natural stimuli does not only improve the users’ ergonomic ratings; also the classification performance is increased. Moreover, natural stimuli obtain a better balance in multi-class decisions, such that the number of systematic confusions between the nine classes is reduced. Hopefully, our findings may contribute to make auditory BCI paradigms more user friendly and applicable for patients.

  14. Comparison of Verbal Preference Assessments in the Presence and Absence of the Actual Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, David E.; DeLeon, Iser G.; Terlonge, Cindy; Goysovich, Richard

    2006-01-01

    Stimulus preference assessments for individuals with developmental disabilities typically involve offering choices among stimuli and providing immediate access to the chosen stimuli. Several researchers have explored the utility of presenting choices verbally, thereby obviating the need to present the choices in tangible form and deliver access to…

  15. Time and Number Discrimination in a Bisection Task with a Sequence of Stimuli: A Developmental Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Droit-Volet, Sylvie; Clement, Angelique; Fayol, Michel

    2003-01-01

    This study tested 5- and 8-year-olds and adults in a bisection task with a sequence of stimuli in which time and number co-varied. Findings indicated that the number of stimuli interfered with 5-year-olds' performance on the temporal bisection task. Number interference decreased both with age and counting strategy. In the numerical bisection task,…

  16. Pupillary Reactivity to Emotional Stimuli in Children of Depressed and Anxious Mothers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkhouse, Katie L.; Siegle, Greg J.; Gibb, Brandon E.

    2014-01-01

    Background: The primary aim of this study was to examine differences in physiological reactivity (measured via pupillometry) to emotional stimuli between children of depressed versus nondepressed mothers. A second goal was to examine differences in pupil dilation to emotional stimuli between children of anxious versus nonanxious mothers. Method:…

  17. Long-latency auditory evoked potentials with verbal and nonverbal stimuli,

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila Jacques Oppitz

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT INTRODUCTION: Long-latency auditory evoked potentials represent the cortical activity related to attention, memory, and auditory discrimination skills. Acoustic signal processing occurs differently between verbal and nonverbal stimuli, influencing the latency and amplitude patterns. OBJECTIVE: To describe the latencies of the cortical potentials P1, N1, P2, N2, and P3, as well as P3 amplitude, with different speech stimuli and tone bursts, and to classify them in the presence and absence of these data. METHODS: A total of 30 subjects with normal hearing were assessed, aged 18-32 years old, matched by gender. Nonverbal stimuli were used (tone burst; 1000 Hz - frequent and 4000 Hz - rare; and verbal (/ba/ - frequent; /ga/, /da/, and /di/ - rare. RESULTS: Considering the component N2 for tone burst, the lowest latency found was 217.45 ms for the BA/DI stimulus; the highest latency found was 256.5 ms. For the P3 component, the shortest latency with tone burst stimuli was 298.7 with BA/GA stimuli, the highest, was 340 ms. For the P3 amplitude, there was no statistically significant difference among the different stimuli. For latencies of components P1, N1, P2, N2, P3, there were no statistical differences among them, regardless of the stimuli used. CONCLUSION: There was a difference in the latency of potentials N2 and P3 among the stimuli employed but no difference was observed for the P3 amplitude.

  18. Resistance to Change and Frequency of Response-Dependent Stimuli Uncorrelated with Reinforcement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podlesnik, Christopher A.; Jimenez-Gomez, Corina; Ward, Ryan D.; Shahan, Timothy A.

    2009-01-01

    Stimuli uncorrelated with reinforcement have been shown to enhance response rates and resistance to disruption; however, the effects of different rates of stimulus presentations have not been assessed. In two experiments, we assessed the effects of adding different rates of response-dependent brief stimuli uncorrelated with primary reinforcement…

  19. Chromatic induction from surrounding stimuli under perceptual suppression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horiuchi, Koji; Kuriki, Ichiro; Tokunaga, Rumi; Matsumiya, Kazumichi; Shioiri, Satoshi

    2014-11-01

    The appearance of colors can be affected by their spatiotemporal context. The shift in color appearance according to the surrounding colors is called color induction or chromatic induction; in particular, the shift in opponent color of the surround is called chromatic contrast. To investigate whether chromatic induction occurs even when the chromatic surround is imperceptible, we measured chromatic induction during interocular suppression. A multicolor or uniform color field was presented as the surround stimulus, and a colored continuous flash suppression (CFS) stimulus was presented to the dominant eye of each subject. The subjects were asked to report the appearance of the test field only when the stationary surround stimulus is invisible by interocular suppression with CFS. The resulting shifts in color appearance due to chromatic induction were significant even under the conditions of interocular suppression for all surround stimuli. The magnitude of chromatic induction differed with the surround conditions, and this difference was preserved regardless of the viewing conditions. The chromatic induction effect was reduced by CFS, in proportion to the magnitude of chromatic induction under natural (i.e., no-CFS) viewing conditions. According to an analysis with linear model fitting, we revealed the presence of at least two kinds of subprocesses for chromatic induction that reside at higher and lower levels than the site of interocular suppression. One mechanism yields different degrees of chromatic induction based on the complexity of the surround, which is unaffected by interocular suppression, while the other mechanism changes its output with interocular suppression acting as a gain control. Our results imply that the total chromatic induction effect is achieved via a linear summation of outputs from mechanisms that reside at different levels of visual processing.

  20. Alcoholics' selective attention to alcohol stimuli: automated processing?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stormark, K M; Laberg, J C; Nordby, H; Hugdahl, K

    2000-01-01

    This study investigated alcoholics' selective attention to alcohol words in a version of the Stroop color-naming task. Alcoholic subjects (n = 23) and nonalcoholic control subjects (n = 23) identified the color of Stroop versions of alcohol, emotional, neutral and color words. Manual reaction times (RTs), skin conductance responses (SCRs) and heart rate (HR) were recorded. Alcoholics showed overall longer RTs than controls while both groups were slower in responding to the incongruent color words than to the other words. Alcoholics showed longer RTs to both alcohol (1522.7 milliseconds [ms]) and emotional words (1523.7 ms) than to neutral words (1450.8 ms) which suggests that the content of these words interfered with the ability to attend to the color of the words. There was also a negative correlation (r = -.41) between RT and response accuracy to alcohol words for the alcoholics, reflecting that the longer time the alcoholics used to respond to the color of the alcohol words, the more incorrect their responses were. The alcoholics also showed significantly greater SCRs to alcohol words (0.16 microSiemens) than to any of the other words (ranging from 0.04-0.08 microSiemens), probably reflecting the emotional significance of the alcohol words. Finally, the alcoholics evidenced smaller HR acceleration to alcohol (1.9 delta bpm) compared to neutral (2.8 delta bpm), which could be related to difficulties alcoholics experience in terminating their attention to the alcohol words. These findings indicate that it is difficult for alcoholics to regulate their attention to alcohol stimuli, suggesting that alcoholics' processing of alcohol information is automated.

  1. Alpha oscillations correlate with the successful inhibition of unattended stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Händel, Barbara F; Haarmeier, Thomas; Jensen, Ole

    2011-09-01

    Because the human visual system is continually being bombarded with inputs, it is necessary to have effective mechanisms for filtering out irrelevant information. This is partly achieved by the allocation of attention, allowing the visual system to process relevant input while blocking out irrelevant input. What is the physiological substrate of attentional allocation? It has been proposed that alpha activity reflects functional inhibition. Here we asked if inhibition by alpha oscillations has behavioral consequences for suppressing the perception of unattended input. To this end, we investigated the influence of alpha activity on motion processing in two attentional conditions using magneto-encephalography. The visual stimuli used consisted of two random-dot kinematograms presented simultaneously to the left and right visual hemifields. Subjects were cued to covertly attend the left or right kinematogram. After 1.5 sec, a second cue tested whether subjects could report the direction of coherent motion in the attended (80%) or unattended hemifield (20%). Occipital alpha power was higher contralateral to the unattended side than to the attended side, thus suggesting inhibition of the unattended hemifield. Our key finding is that this alpha lateralization in the 20% invalidly cued trials did correlate with the perception of motion direction: Subjects with pronounced alpha lateralization were worse at detecting motion direction in the unattended hemifield. In contrast, lateralization did not correlate with visual discrimination in the attended visual hemifield. Our findings emphasize the suppressive nature of alpha oscillations and suggest that processing of inputs outside the field of attention is weakened by means of increased alpha activity.

  2. Multiple distinct stimuli increase measured nucleosome occupancy around human promoters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuong D Pham

    Full Text Available Nucleosomes can block access to transcription factors. Thus the precise localization of nucleosomes relative to transcription start sites and other factor binding sites is expected to be a critical component of transcriptional regulation. Recently developed microarray approaches have allowed the rapid mapping of nucleosome positions over hundreds of kilobases (kb of human genomic DNA, although these approaches have not yet been widely used to measure chromatin changes associated with changes in transcription. Here, we use custom tiling microarrays to reveal changes in nucleosome positions and abundance that occur when hormone-bound glucocorticoid receptor (GR binds to sites near target gene promoters in human osteosarcoma cells. The most striking change is an increase in measured nucleosome occupancy at sites spanning ∼1 kb upstream and downstream of transcription start sites, which occurs one hour after addition of hormone, but is lost at 4 hours. Unexpectedly, this increase was seen both on GR-regulated and GR-non-regulated genes. In addition, the human SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling factor (a GR co-activator was found to be important for increased occupancy upon hormone treatment and also for low nucleosome occupancy without hormone. Most surprisingly, similar increases in nucleosome occupancy were also seen on both regulated and non-regulated promoters during differentiation of human myeloid leukemia cells and upon activation of human CD4+ T-cells. These results indicate that dramatic changes in chromatin structure over ∼2 kb of human promoters may occur genomewide and in response to a variety of stimuli, and suggest novel models for transcriptional regulation.

  3. Intersubject information mapping: revealing canonical representations of complex natural stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolaus Kriegeskorte

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Real-world time-continuous stimuli such as video promise greater naturalism for studies of brain function. However, modeling the stimulus variation is challenging and introduces a bias in favor of particular descriptive dimensions. Alternatively, we can look for brain regions whose signal is correlated between subjects, essentially using one subject to model another. Intersubject correlation mapping (ICM allows us to find brain regions driven in a canonical manner across subjects by a complex natural stimulus. However, it requires a direct voxel-to-voxel match between the spatiotemporal activity patterns and is thus only sensitive to common activations sufficiently extended to match up in Talairach space (or in an alternative, e.g. cortical-surface-based, common brain space. Here we introduce the more general approach of intersubject information mapping (IIM. For each brain region, IIM determines how much information is shared between the subjects' local spatiotemporal activity patterns. We estimate the intersubject mutual information using canonical correlation analysis applied to voxels within a spherical searchlight centered on each voxel in turn. The intersubject information estimate is invariant to linear transforms including spatial rearrangement of the voxels within the searchlight. This invariance to local encoding will be crucial in exploring fine-grained brain representations, which cannot be matched up in a common space and, more fundamentally, might be unique to each individual – like fingerprints. IIM yields a continuous brain map, which reflects intersubject information in fine-grained patterns. Performed on data from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI of subjects viewing the same television show, IIM and ICM both highlighted sensory representations, including primary visual and auditory cortices. However, IIM revealed additional regions in higher association cortices, namely temporal pole and orbitofrontal cortex. These

  4. Design, challenge, and promise of stimuli-responsive nanoantibiotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edson, Julius A.; Kwon, Young Jik

    2016-10-01

    Over the past few years, there have been calls for novel antimicrobials to combat the rise of drug-resistant bacteria. While some promising new discoveries have met this call, it is not nearly enough. The major problem is that although these new promising antimicrobials serve as a short-term solution, they lack the potential to provide a long-term solution. The conventional method of creating new antibiotics relies heavily on the discovery of an antimicrobial compound from another microbe. This paradigm of development is flawed due to the fact that microbes can easily transfer a resistant mechanism if faced with an environmental pressure. Furthermore, there has been some evidence to indicate that the environment of the microbe can provide a hint as to their virulence. Because of this, the use of materials with antimicrobial properties has been garnering interest. Nanoantibiotics, (nAbts), provide a new way to circumvent the current paradigm of antimicrobial discovery and presents a novel mechanism of attack not found in microbes yet; which may lead to a longer-term solution against drug-resistance formation. This allows for environment-specific activation and efficacy of the nAbts but may also open up and create new design methods for various applications. These nAbts provide promise, but there is still ample work to be done in their development. This review looks at possible ways of improving and optimizing nAbts by making them stimuli-responsive, then consider the challenges ahead, and industrial applications.[Figure not available: see fulltext.

  5. Dissociating emotion-induced blindness and hypervision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocanegra, Bruno R; Zeelenberg, René

    2009-12-01

    Previous findings suggest that emotional stimuli sometimes improve (emotion-induced hypervision) and sometimes impair (emotion-induced blindness) the visual perception of subsequent neutral stimuli. We hypothesized that these differential carryover effects might be due to 2 distinct emotional influences in visual processing. On the one hand, emotional stimuli trigger a general enhancement in the efficiency of visual processing that can carry over onto other stimuli. On the other hand, emotional stimuli benefit from a stimulus-specific enhancement in later attentional processing at the expense of competing visual stimuli. We investigated whether detrimental (blindness) and beneficial (hypervision) carryover effects of emotion in perception can be dissociated within a single experimental paradigm. In 2 experiments, we manipulated the temporal competition for attention between an emotional cue word and a subsequent neutral target word by varying cue-target interstimulus interval (ISI) and cue visibility. Interestingly, emotional cues impaired target identification at short ISIs but improved target identification when competition was diminished by either increasing ISI or reducing cue visibility, suggesting that emotional significance of stimuli can improve and impair visual performance through distinct perceptual mechanisms.

  6. Testing aggressive behaviour in a feeding context: Importance of ethologically relevant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Daniel; Szenczi, Péter; Bánszegi, Oxána; Hudson, Robyn

    2018-05-01

    The choice of stimuli used in tests of animal behaviour can have a critical effect on the outcome. Here we report two experiments showing how different foods influenced aggressive behaviour in competition tests at weaning among littermates of the domestic cat. Whereas in Experiment 1 canned food elicited almost no overt competition, a piece of raw beef rib elicited clearly aggressive behaviour among littermates. In Experiment 2 the food stimuli were chosen to differ from raw beef rib in various combinations of taste/smell, texture and monopolizability. Kittens showed different levels of aggression in response to the five stimuli tested, which suggests that the strong effect of beef rib in eliciting aggressive behaviour was due to a complex combination of features. We suggest that using stimuli approximating the evolved, functional significance to the species concerned is more likely to result in robust, biologically relevant behaviours than more artificial stimuli. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Exposure is not enough: suppressing stimuli from awareness can abolish the mere exposure effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Zilva, Daniel; Vu, Luke; Newell, Ben R; Pearson, Joel

    2013-01-01

    Passive exposure to neutral stimuli increases subsequent liking of those stimuli--the mere exposure effect. Because of the broad implications for understanding and controlling human preferences, the role of conscious awareness in mere exposure has received much attention. Previous studies have claimed that the mere exposure effect can occur without conscious awareness of the stimuli. In two experiments, we applied a technique new to the mere exposure literature, called continuous flash suppression, to expose stimuli for a controlled duration with and without awareness. To ensure the reliability of the awareness manipulation, awareness was monitored on a trial-by-trial basis. Our results show that under these conditions the mere exposure effect does not occur without conscious awareness. In contrast, only when participants were aware of the stimuli did exposure increase liking and recognition. Together these data are consistent with the idea that the mere exposure effect requires conscious awareness and has important implications for theories of memory and affect.

  8. Neural activity induced by visual food stimuli presented out of awareness: a preliminary magnetoencephalography study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takada, Katsuko; Ishii, Akira; Matsuo, Takashi; Nakamura, Chika; Uji, Masato; Yoshikawa, Takahiro

    2018-02-15

    Obesity is a major public health problem in modern society. Appetitive behavior has been proposed to be partially driven by unconscious decision-making processes and thus, targeting the unconscious cognitive processes related to eating behavior is essential to develop strategies for overweight individuals and obese patients. Here, we presented food pictures below the threshold of awareness to healthy male volunteers and examined neural activity related to appetitive behavior using magnetoencephalography. We found that, among participants who did not recognize food pictures during the experiment, an index of heart rate variability assessed by electrocardiography (low-frequency component power/high-frequency component power ratio, LF/HF) just after picture presentation was increased compared with that just before presentation, and the increase in LF/HF was negatively associated with the score for cognitive restraint of food intake. In addition, increased LF/HF was negatively associated with increased alpha band power in Brodmann area (BA) 47 caused by food pictures presented below the threshold of awareness, and level of cognitive restraint was positively associated with increased alpha band power in BA13. Our findings may provide valuable clues to the development of methods assessing unconscious regulation of appetite and offer avenues for further study of the neural mechanisms related to eating behavior.

  9. γ-Rays-induced synthesis of hydrogels of vinyl ethers with stimuli-sensitive behavior

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nam, I.K.; Mun, G.A.; Urkimbaeva, P.I.; Nurkeeva, Z.S.

    2003-01-01

    γ-Radiation method was applied to synthesize novel water-soluble and water-swelling polymers. Vinyl ether of ethylene glycol (VEEG), vinyl butyl (VBE) and vinyl isobutyl (VIBE) ethers were used as monomers. The synthesis of VEEG-VBE and VEEG-VIBE copolymers was carried out in a wide range of feed composition and absorbed dose. It was found that the hydrophobic-hydrophilic balance of the copolymers could be delicately varied by the copolymer composition as well as by the chemical structure of the alkyl substitute in the hydrophobic moiety. The copolymers exhibit thermo-sensitive behavior in water solutions. The value of transition temperature is considerably decreased at a higher concentration of the hydrophobic component in the copolymer composition

  10. Prolonged maintenance of capsaicin-induced hyperalgesia by brief daily vibration stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, Hee Kee; Schattschneider, Jörn; Lee, Inhyung; Chung, Kyungsoon; Baron, Ralf; Chung, Jin Mo

    2006-01-01

    This study tests the hypothesis that central sensitization initiated by nociceptive input can be maintained by repeated brief innocuous peripheral inputs. Capsaicin was injected intradermally into the hind paw of adult rats. Three different types of daily cutaneous mechanical stimulations (vibration, soft brush, or pressure) were applied to the capsaicin-injected paw for a period of 2 weeks. Daily stimulation consisted of a 10-second stimulation repeated every 30 seconds for 30 minutes. Foot ...

  11. The attractive Achilles heel of germ cell tumours : an inherent sensitivity to apoptosis-inducing stimuli

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spierings, DCJ; de Vries, EGE; Vellenga, E; de Jong, S

    Testicular germ cell tumours (TGCTs) are extremely sensitive to cisplatin-containing chemotherapy. The rapid time course of apoptosis induction after exposure to cisplatin suggests that TGCT cells are primed to undergo programmed cell death as an inherent property of the cell of origin. In fact,

  12. Biased Intensity Judgements of Visceral Sensations After Learning to Fear Visceral Stimuli: A Drift Diffusion Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaman, Jonas; Madden, Victoria J; Iven, Julie; Wiech, Katja; Weltens, Nathalie; Ly, Huynh Giao; Vlaeyen, Johan W S; Van Oudenhove, Lukas; Van Diest, Ilse

    2017-10-01

    A growing body of research has identified fear of visceral sensations as a potential mechanism in the development and maintenance of visceral pain disorders. However, the extent to which such learned fear affects visceroception remains unclear. To address this question, we used a differential fear conditioning paradigm with nonpainful esophageal balloon distensions of 2 different intensities as conditioning stimuli (CSs). The experiment comprised of preacquisition, acquisition, and postacquisition phases during which participants categorized the CSs with respect to their intensity. The CS+ was always followed by a painful electrical stimulus (unconditioned stimulus) during the acquisition phase and in 60% of the trials during postacquisition. The second stimulus (CS-) was never associated with pain. Analyses of galvanic skin and startle eyeblink responses as physiological markers of successful conditioning showed increased fear responses to the CS+ compared with the CS-, but only in the group with the low-intensity stimulus as CS+. Computational modeling of response times and response accuracies revealed that differential fear learning affected perceptual decision-making about the intensities of visceral sensations such that sensations were more likely to be categorized as more intense. These results suggest that associative learning might indeed contribute to visceral hypersensitivity in functional gastrointestinal disorders. This study shows that associative fear learning biases intensity judgements of visceral sensations toward perceiving such sensations as more intense. Learning-induced alterations in visceroception might therefore contribute to the development or maintenance of visceral pain. Copyright © 2017 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Observer's Mood Manipulates Level of Visual Processing: Evidence from Face and Nonface Stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Setareh Mokhtari

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available For investigating the effect of observer's mood on level of processing of visual stimuli, happy or sad mood was induced in two groups of participants through asking them to deliberate one of their sad or happy memories while listening to a congruent piece of music. This was followed by a computer-based task that required counting some features (arcs or lines of emotional schematic faces (with either sad or happy expressions for group 1, and counting same features of meaningless combined shapes for group 2. Reaction time analysis indicated there is a significant difference in RTs after listening to the sad music compared with happy music for group 1; participants with sad moods were significantly slower when they worked on local levels of schematic faces with sad expressions. Happy moods did not show any specific effect on reaction time of participants who were working on local details of emotionally expressive faces. Sad moods or happy moods had no significant effect on reaction time of working on parts of meaningless shapes. It seems that sad moods as a contextual factor elevate the ability of sad expression to grab the attention and block fast access to the local parts of the holistic meaningful shapes.

  14. Low temperature protects mammalian cells from apoptosis initiated by various stimuli in vitro

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sakurai, Toshiharu; Itoh, Katsuhiko; Liu Yu; Higashitsuji, Hiroaki; Sumitomo, Yasuhiko; Sakamaki, Kazuhiro; Fujita, Jun

    2005-01-01

    Mild hypothermia shows protective effects on patients with brain damage and cardiac arrest. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying these effects, we examined the effects of low temperature (32 deg. C) on cells exposed to a variety of stress in vitro. We found that 32 deg. C suppressed induction of apoptosis by cytotoxic stimuli such as adriamycin, etoposide, thapsigargin, NaCl, H 2 O 2 , and anti-Fas antibody. In adriamycin-treated BALB/3T3 cells, the down-shift in temperature from 37 deg. C to 32 deg. C increased the Bcl-xL protein level and decreased the mRNA level of Puma and mitochondrial translocation of Bax, suppressing caspase-9-mediated apoptosis. Furthermore, the protein level and stability of p53 were decreased, and its nuclear export was increased concomitant with Mdm2 mRNA upregulation. The low temperature effect was not observed in p53 -/- /Mdm2 -/- mouse embryonic fibroblasts, suggesting that the effect is mediated by suppression of the p53 pathway. In contrast, while thapsigargin-induced apoptosis was suppressed by the low temperature, no effect on the p53 protein level was observed. Furthermore, the survival rate of p53 -/- /Mdm2 -/- cells exposed to thapsigargin was increased when cultured at 32 deg. C compared with 37 deg. C. In conclusion, mild hypothermia protects cells from a variety of stress by p53-dependent and p53-independent mechanisms

  15. Development of the Korean Facial Emotion Stimuli: Korea University Facial Expression Collection 2nd Edition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun-Min Kim

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Developing valid emotional facial stimuli for specific ethnicities creates ample opportunities to investigate both the nature of emotional facial information processing in general and clinical populations as well as the underlying mechanisms of facial emotion processing within and across cultures. Given that most entries in emotional facial stimuli databases were developed with western samples, and given that very few of the eastern emotional facial stimuli sets were based strictly on the Ekman’s Facial Action Coding System, developing valid emotional facial stimuli of eastern samples remains a high priority.Aims: To develop and examine the psychometric properties of six basic emotional facial stimuli recruiting professional Korean actors and actresses based on the Ekman’s Facial Action Coding System for the Korea University Facial Expression Collection-Second Edition (KUFEC-II.Materials And Methods: Stimulus selection was done in two phases. First, researchers evaluated the clarity and intensity of each stimulus developed based on the Facial Action Coding System. Second, researchers selected a total of 399 stimuli from a total of 57 actors and actresses, which were then rated on accuracy, intensity, valence, and arousal by 75 independent raters.Conclusion: The hit rates between the targeted and rated expressions of the KUFEC-II were all above 80%, except for fear (50% and disgust (63%. The KUFEC-II appears to be a valid emotional facial stimuli database, providing the largest set of emotional facial stimuli. The mean intensity score was 5.63 (out of 7, suggesting that the stimuli delivered the targeted emotions with great intensity. All positive expressions were rated as having a high positive valence, whereas all negative expressions were rated as having a high negative valence. The KUFEC II is expected to be widely used in various psychological studies on emotional facial expression. KUFEC-II stimuli can be obtained through

  16. Effects of different musical stimuli in vital signs and facial expressions in patients with cerebral damage: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, Ana Sofia Fernandes; Ramos, Antonio; Bermejo, Emilia; Casero, Mónica; Corrales, José Manuel; Grantham, Sarah

    2014-04-01

    Along history, music has been used in a variety of ways for therapeutic purposes and has long been recognized for its physiological and psychological effects. Music listening can be an effective nursing intervention, to enhance relaxation, provide distraction, and reduce pain. The aims of this study were to identify changes produced by different musical stimuli in blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR), respiratory rate (RR), and oxygen saturations (SpO2) and to verify the influence of music listening on patients' facial expressions with severe cerebral damage. A quasiexperimental study was performed in 26 patients with severe cerebral damage, divided into control and case groups. Patients belonging to the case group were exposed to musical stimuli, radio, classical relaxing music (CRM), and relaxing music with nature sounds (RMNS). Patients were evaluated by measuring vital signs before and after exposure to each musical stimulus, as were the patients within the control group. Patients in the control group were exempt from any musical stimulus. Facial expressions were observed in each patient within the case group during the intervention. The results show that radio produced a slight increase in systolic BP, HR, RR, and SpO2. The CRM induced a decrease of RR and an increase of SpO2 and also produced alterations of the facial expression. When RMNS was played, a decrease was displayed in BP, HR, and RR and an increase was displayed in SpO2. Alterations in facial expression were displayed in each patient. The results of the study suggest that the application of musical stimuli such as CRM and RMNS can be used to provide a state of relaxation in patients with severe cerebral damage.

  17. Effect of hybrid UV-thermal energy stimuli on inactivation of S. epidermidis andB. subtilis bacterial bioaerosols

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hwang, Gi Byoung; Jung, Jae Hee; Jeong, Tae Gun; Lee, Byung Uk, E-mail: leebu@konkuk.ac.kr [Aerosol and Bioengineering Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Konkuk University, 1 Hwayang-dong, Gwangjin-Gu, Seoul, 143-701(Korea, Republic of)

    2010-11-01

    Bioaerosols have become an increasingly important issue due to their harmful effects on human health. As the concern over airborne microorganisms grows, so does the need to develop and study efficient methods of controlling them. In this study, we designed a hybrid system involving ultraviolet (UV) irradiation and thermal energy and investigated its effects on bacterial bioaerosols, followed by a comparison with thermal energy alone and UV irradiation alone. The results show that the hybrid effect caused no variation in the shape of the normalized particle size distributions of S. epidermidis and B. subtilis bioaerosols. However, a physical transport loss of bacterial bioaerosols developed as the temperature inside the glass quartz tube increased. When bacterial bioaerosols were simultaneously exposed to UV irradiation and thermal energy for less than 1.05 s, more than 99% of S. epidermidis bioaerosols were inactivated at 120 {sup o}C with exposure to one UV lamp and at 80 {sup o}C with exposure to two UV lamps; and 93.5% and 98.5% of B. subtilis bioaerosols were inactivated at 280 {sup o}C with exposure to one and two UV lamps, respectively. Moreover, the hybrid UV-thermal stimuli significantly reduced the concentration of ozone, which is a secondary UV-induced pollutant. Our results show that to obtain the same inactivation efficiency, the hybrid UV-thermal stimuli were more efficient than thermal energy alone in terms of energy consumption and produced significantly less ozone than UV irradiation alone. The hybrid stimuli also had higher inactivation efficiency than UV alone. Therefore, these results provide valuable information for the development of new methods for controlling bioaerosols.

  18. Physical activity and bone: The importance of the various mechanical stimuli for bone mineral density. A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bente Morseth

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Numerous studies have reported benefits of regular physical activity on bone mineral density (BMD. The effects of physical activity on BMD are primarily linked to the mechanisms of mechanical loading, but the understanding of the precise mechanism behind the association is incomplete. The aim of this paper was to review the main findings concerning sources and types of mechanical stimuli in relation to BMD. Mechanical forces that act on bone are generated from impact with the ground (ground-reaction forces and from skeletal muscle contractions (muscle forces or muscle-joint forces, but the relative importance of these two sources has not been elucidated. Both muscle-joint forces and gravitational forces seem to be able to induce bone adaptation independently, and there may be differences in the importance of loading sources at different skeletal sites. The nature of the stimuli is affected by the type, intensity, frequency, and duration of the activity. The activity should be dynamic, not static, and the magnitude and rate of the stimuli should be high. In accordance with this, cross-sectional studies report highest BMD in athletes of high-impact activities such as dancing, soccer, volleyball, basketball, squash, speed skating, gymnastics, hockey, and step-aerobics. Endurance activities such as orienteering, skiing, and triathlon seem to be beneficial to a lesser degree, whereas low-impact activities such as swimming and cycling are associated with lower BMD than controls. Both the intensity and frequency of the activity should be varied and increased beyond the habitual level. Duration of the activity seems to be less important, and a few loading cycles seem to be sufficient.

  19. Human pupillary dilation response to deviant auditory stimuli: Effects of stimulus properties and voluntary attention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsin-I eLiao

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available A unique sound that deviates from a repetitive background sound induces signature neural responses, such as mismatch negativity and novelty P3 response in electro-encephalography studies. Here we show that a deviant auditory stimulus induces a human pupillary dilation response (PDR that is sensitive to the stimulus properties and irrespective whether attention is directed to the sounds or not. In an auditory oddball sequence, we used white noise and 2000-Hz tones as oddballs against repeated 1000-Hz tones. Participants’ pupillary responses were recorded while they listened to the auditory oddball sequence. In Experiment 1, they were not involved in any task. Results show that pupils dilated to the noise oddballs for approximately 4 s, but no such PDR was found for the 2000-Hz tone oddballs. In Experiments 2, two types of visual oddballs were presented synchronously with the auditory oddballs. Participants discriminated the auditory or visual oddballs while trying to ignore stimuli from the other modality. The purpose of this manipulation was to direct attention to or away from the auditory sequence. In Experiment 3, the visual oddballs and the auditory oddballs were always presented asynchronously to prevent residuals of attention on to-be-ignored oddballs due to the concurrence with the attended oddballs. Results show that pupils dilated to both the noise and 2000-Hz tone oddballs in all conditions. Most importantly, PDRs to noise were larger than those to the 2000-Hz tone oddballs regardless of the attention condition in both experiments. The overall results suggest that the stimulus-dependent factor of the PDR appears to be independent of attention.

  20. Human Pupillary Dilation Response to Deviant Auditory Stimuli: Effects of Stimulus Properties and Voluntary Attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Hsin-I; Yoneya, Makoto; Kidani, Shunsuke; Kashino, Makio; Furukawa, Shigeto

    2016-01-01

    A unique sound that deviates from a repetitive background sound induces signature neural responses, such as mismatch negativity and novelty P3 response in electro-encephalography studies. Here we show that a deviant auditory stimulus induces a human pupillary dilation response (PDR) that is sensitive to the stimulus properties and irrespective whether attention is directed to the sounds or not. In an auditory oddball sequence, we used white noise and 2000-Hz tones as oddballs against repeated 1000-Hz tones. Participants' pupillary responses were recorded while they listened to the auditory oddball sequence. In Experiment 1, they were not involved in any task. Results show that pupils dilated to the noise oddballs for approximately 4 s, but no such PDR was found for the 2000-Hz tone oddballs. In Experiments 2, two types of visual oddballs were presented synchronously with the auditory oddballs. Participants discriminated the auditory or visual oddballs while trying to ignore stimuli from the other modality. The purpose of this manipulation was to direct attention to or away from the auditory sequence. In Experiment 3, the visual oddballs and the auditory oddballs were always presented asynchronously to prevent residuals of attention on to-be-ignored oddballs due to the concurrence with the attended oddballs. Results show that pupils dilated to both the noise and 2000-Hz tone oddballs in all conditions. Most importantly, PDRs to noise were larger than those to the 2000-Hz tone oddballs regardless of the attention condition in both experiments. The overall results suggest that the stimulus-dependent factor of the PDR appears to be independent of attention.

  1. Food-related attentional bias. Word versus pictorial stimuli and the importance of stimuli calorific value in the dot probe task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freijy, Tanya; Mullan, Barbara; Sharpe, Louise

    2014-12-01

    The primary aim of this study was to extend previous research on food-related attentional biases by examining biases towards pictorial versus word stimuli, and foods of high versus low calorific value. It was expected that participants would demonstrate greater biases to pictures over words, and to high-calorie over low-calorie foods. A secondary aim was to examine associations between BMI, dietary restraint, external eating and attentional biases. It was expected that high scores on these individual difference variables would be associated with a bias towards high-calorie stimuli. Undergraduates (N = 99) completed a dot probe task including matched word and pictorial food stimuli in a controlled setting. Questionnaires assessing eating behaviour were administered, and height and weight were measured. Contrary to predictions, there were no main effects for stimuli type (pictures vs words) or calorific value (high vs low). There was, however, a significant interaction effect suggesting a bias towards high-calorie pictures, but away from high-calorie words; and a bias towards low-calorie words, but away from low-calorie pictures. No associations between attentional bias and any of the individual difference variables were found. The presence of a stimulus type by calorific value interaction demonstrates the importance of stimuli type in the dot probe task, and may help to explain inconsistencies in prior research. Further research is needed to clarify associations between attentional bias and BMI, restraint, and external eating. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Stimuli-sensitive nanoparticles for multiple anti-HIV microbicides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Giri, Namita; Oh, Byeongtaek; Lee, Chi H., E-mail: leech@umkc.edu [University of Missouri at Kansas City, Division of Pharmaceutical Sciences (United States)

    2016-05-15

    This study is aimed to develop and evaluate an advanced intravaginal formulation for the delivery of multiple anti-HIV microbicides. Novel stimuli-sensitive nanoparticles (NPs) which protected the encapsulated drugs from being degraded in acidic pH conditions were made of Eudragit S-100{sup ®} (ES100{sup ®}), a pH-sensitive polymer. ES100{sup ®} NPs were prepared using the quasi-emulsion solvent diffusion technique and loaded with two microbicides namely Tenofovir (TNF) and Etravirine (ETV). The effects of various fabrication parameters on the formulation properties were evaluated for the optimization of ES100{sup ®} NPs. The morphology of the ES100{sup ®} NPs was examined by scanning electron microscopy. The cytotoxicity of NPs containing microbicides individually or in a combination was assessed using cell viability and trans-epithelial electrical resistance (TEER) measurements. The cellular uptake rates of the model microbicides by human vaginal epithelial cells, VK2 E6/E7 cells, were evaluated using confocal microscopy and florescence-assisted cell sorting technique. ES100{sup ®} NPs had a spherical shape, smooth surface, and uniform texture with a little aggregation. The average particle size for NPs loaded with TNF ranged from 125 to 230 nm, whereas those for ETV-loaded NPs ranged from 160 to 280 nm. ES100{sup ®} NPs had zeta potential in the range of −5 to −10 mV. In-vitro release studies displayed the potential benefits of ES100{sup ®} NPs in retaining and protecting the loaded microbicides at vaginal pH (acidic), but immediately releasing them as the pH changes to neutral or 7.4 (physiological pH). Cell viability studies demonstrated that ES100{sup ®} NPs did not exert any cytotoxicity individually or in a combination of both microbicides. TEER measurements confirmed that ES100{sup ®} NPs loaded with TNF and ETV did not cause any changes in the barrier integrity of VK2 E6/E7 cell monolayer. The cellular uptake study revealed that ES100{sup

  3. Shape-Morphing Materials from Stimuli-Responsive Hydrogel Hybrids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeon, Seog-Jin; Hauser, Adam W; Hayward, Ryan C

    2017-02-21

    The formation of well-defined and functional three-dimensional (3D) structures by buckling of thin sheets subjected to spatially nonuniform stresses is common in biological morphogenesis and has become a subject of great interest in synthetic systems, as such programmable shape-morphing materials hold promise in areas including drug delivery, biomedical devices, soft robotics, and biomimetic systems. Given their ability to undergo large changes in swelling in response to a wide variety of stimuli, hydrogels have naturally emerged as a key type of material in this field. Of particular interest are hybrid systems containing rigid inclusions that can define both the anisotropy and spatial nonuniformity of swelling as well as nanoparticulate additives that can enhance the responsiveness and functionality of the material. In this Account, we discuss recent progress in approaches to achieve well-defined shape morphing in hydrogel hybrids. First, we provide an overview of materials and methods that facilitate fabrication of such systems and outline the geometry and mechanics behind shape morphing of thin sheets. We then discuss how patterning of stiff inclusions within soft responsive hydrogels can be used to program both bending and swelling, thereby providing access to a wide array of complex 3D forms. The use of discretely patterned stiff regions to provide an effective composite response offers distinct advantages in terms of scalability and ease of fabrication compared with approaches based on smooth gradients within a single layer of responsive material. We discuss a number of recent advances wherein control of the mechanical properties and geometric characteristics of patterned stiff elements enables the formation of 3D shapes, including origami-inspired structures, concatenated helical frameworks, and surfaces with nonzero Gaussian curvature. Next, we outline how the inclusion of functional elements such as nanoparticles can enable unique pathways to programmable

  4. Stimuli-sensitive nanoparticles for multiple anti-HIV microbicides

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Giri, Namita; Oh, Byeongtaek; Lee, Chi H.

    2016-01-01

    This study is aimed to develop and evaluate an advanced intravaginal formulation for the delivery of multiple anti-HIV microbicides. Novel stimuli-sensitive nanoparticles (NPs) which protected the encapsulated drugs from being degraded in acidic pH conditions were made of Eudragit S-100"® (ES100"®), a pH-sensitive polymer. ES100"® NPs were prepared using the quasi-emulsion solvent diffusion technique and loaded with two microbicides namely Tenofovir (TNF) and Etravirine (ETV). The effects of various fabrication parameters on the formulation properties were evaluated for the optimization of ES100"® NPs. The morphology of the ES100"® NPs was examined by scanning electron microscopy. The cytotoxicity of NPs containing microbicides individually or in a combination was assessed using cell viability and trans-epithelial electrical resistance (TEER) measurements. The cellular uptake rates of the model microbicides by human vaginal epithelial cells, VK2 E6/E7 cells, were evaluated using confocal microscopy and florescence-assisted cell sorting technique. ES100"® NPs had a spherical shape, smooth surface, and uniform texture with a little aggregation. The average particle size for NPs loaded with TNF ranged from 125 to 230 nm, whereas those for ETV-loaded NPs ranged from 160 to 280 nm. ES100"® NPs had zeta potential in the range of −5 to −10 mV. In-vitro release studies displayed the potential benefits of ES100"® NPs in retaining and protecting the loaded microbicides at vaginal pH (acidic), but immediately releasing them as the pH changes to neutral or 7.4 (physiological pH). Cell viability studies demonstrated that ES100"® NPs did not exert any cytotoxicity individually or in a combination of both microbicides. TEER measurements confirmed that ES100"® NPs loaded with TNF and ETV did not cause any changes in the barrier integrity of VK2 E6/E7 cell monolayer. The cellular uptake study revealed that ES100"® NPs were taken by vaginal epithelial cells through

  5. RhoA Activation Sensitizes Cells to Proteotoxic Stimuli by Abrogating the HSF1-Dependent Heat Shock Response.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roelien A M Meijering

    Full Text Available The heat shock response (HSR is an ancient and highly conserved program of stress-induced gene expression, aimed at reestablishing protein homeostasis to preserve cellular fitness. Cells that fail to activate or maintain this protective response are hypersensitive to proteotoxic stress. The HSR is mediated by the heat shock transcription factor 1 (HSF1, which binds to conserved heat shock elements (HSE in the promoter region of heat shock genes, resulting in the expression of heat shock proteins (HSP. Recently, we observed that hyperactivation of RhoA conditions cardiomyocytes for the cardiac arrhythmia atrial fibrillation. Also, the HSR is annihilated in atrial fibrillation, and induction of HSR mitigates sensitization of cells to this disease. Therefore, we hypothesized active RhoA to suppress the HSR resulting in sensitization of cells for proteotoxic stimuli.Stimulation of RhoA activity significantly suppressed the proteotoxic stress-induced HSR in HL-1 atrial cardiomyocytes as determined with a luciferase reporter construct driven by the HSF1 regulated human HSP70 (HSPA1A promoter and HSP protein expression by Western Blot analysis. Inversely, RhoA inhibition boosted the proteotoxic stress-induced HSR. While active RhoA did not preclude HSF1 nuclear accumulation, phosphorylation, acetylation, or sumoylation, it did impair binding of HSF1 to the hsp genes promoter element HSE. Impaired binding results in suppression of HSP expression and sensitized cells to proteotoxic stress.These results reveal that active RhoA negatively regulates the HSR via attenuation of the HSF1-HSE binding and thus may play a role in sensitizing cells to proteotoxic stimuli.

  6. Vitamin C Prevents Sleep Deprivation-induced Elevation in Cortisol ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    olayemitoyin

    person can be aroused by sensory or other stimuli. (Hall, 2015), is an ... 2007). This can be acute (a single period of extended ... short-term (acute) Sleep Deprivation, such studies for .... induced memory impairment: the role of oxidative stress.

  7. Motion-induced blindness and microsaccades: cause and effect

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bonneh, Y.S.; Donner, T.H.; Sagi, D.; Fried, M.; Heeger, D.J.; Arieli, A.

    2010-01-01

    It has been suggested that subjective disappearance of visual stimuli results from a spontaneous reduction of microsaccade rate causing image stabilization, enhanced adaptation, and a consequent fading. In motion-induced blindness (MIB), salient visual targets disappear intermittently when

  8. The development and characterization of stimuli-responsive systems for performance materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Melissa B.

    In nature, living organisms adjust to their surroundings by responding to environmental cues, such as light, temperature or force. Stimuli-triggered processes, such as the contraction of eyes in response to bright light or wound healing in skin after a cut, motivate the design of "smart" materials which are designed to respond to environmental stimuli. Responsive materials are used as self-healing materials, shape memory polymers and responsive coatings; moreover, responsive materials may also be employed as model systems, which enhance understanding of complex behavior. The overall goal of this work is to design a material that offers self-healing functionality, which will allow for self-repair following material fatigue or failure, and increased strength in response to ballistic or puncture threats through the incorporation of colloidal particles. The target application for this material is as a protective barrier in extreme environments, such as outer space. Towards this end, the dissertation is focused on the development and characterization of each component of the protective material by (1) designing and testing novel light- and force-sensitive polymers for self-healing applications and (2) examining and characterizing long-time behavior (i.e., aging) in model thermoreversible colloidal gels and glasses. Towards the development of novel stimuli-responsive materials, a photo-responsive polymer network is developed in which a dynamic bond is incorporated into the network architecture to enable a light-triggered, secondary polymerization, which increases the modulus by two orders of magnitude while strengthening the network by over 100%. Unlike traditional two-stage polymerization systems, in which the secondary polymerization is triggered by a leachable photoinitiator, the dynamic nature is imparted by the material itself via the dissociation of its own crosslinks to become stronger in response to light. Several attributes of the photo-responsive network are

  9. Modeling Behavioral Experiment Interaction and Environmental Stimuli for a Synthetic C. elegans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andoni Mujika

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper focusses on the simulation of the neural network of the Caenorhabditis elegans living organism, and more specifically in the modeling of the stimuli applied within behavioral experiments and the stimuli that is generated in the interaction of the C. elegans with the environment. To the best of our knowledge, all efforts regarding stimuli modeling for the C. elegansare focused on a single type of stimulus, which is usually tested with a limited subnetwork of the C. elegansneural system. In this paper, we follow a different approach where we model a wide-range of different stimuli, with more flexible neural network configurations and simulations in mind. Moreover, we focus on the stimuli sensation by different types of sensory organs or various sensory principles of the neurons. As part of this work, most common stimuli involved in behavioral assays have been modeled. It includes models for mechanical, thermal, chemical, electrical and light stimuli, and for proprioception-related self-sensed information exchange with the neural network. The developed models have been implemented and tested with the hardware-based Si elegans simulation platform.

  10. Dissociating object-based from egocentric transformations in mental body rotation: effect of stimuli size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habacha, Hamdi; Moreau, David; Jarraya, Mohamed; Lejeune-Poutrain, Laure; Molinaro, Corinne

    2018-01-01

    The effect of stimuli size on the mental rotation of abstract objects has been extensively investigated, yet its effect on the mental rotation of bodily stimuli remains largely unexplored. Depending on the experimental design, mentally rotating bodily stimuli can elicit object-based transformations, relying mainly on visual processes, or egocentric transformations, which typically involve embodied motor processes. The present study included two mental body rotation tasks requiring either a same-different or a laterality judgment, designed to elicit object-based or egocentric transformations, respectively. Our findings revealed shorter response times for large-sized stimuli than for small-sized stimuli only for greater angular disparities, suggesting that the more unfamiliar the orientations of the bodily stimuli, the more stimuli size affected mental processing. Importantly, when comparing size transformation times, results revealed different patterns of size transformation times as a function of angular disparity between object-based and egocentric transformations. This indicates that mental size transformation and mental rotation proceed differently depending on the mental rotation strategy used. These findings are discussed with respect to the different spatial manipulations involved during object-based and egocentric transformations.

  11. Enhancing interaural-delay-based extents of laterality at high frequencies by using ``transposed stimuli''

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernstein, Leslie R.; Trahiotis, Constantine

    2003-06-01

    An acoustic pointing task was used to determine whether interaural temporal disparities (ITDs) conveyed by high-frequency ``transposed'' stimuli would produce larger extents of laterality than ITDs conveyed by bands of high-frequency Gaussian noise. The envelopes of transposed stimuli are designed to provide high-frequency channels with information similar to that conveyed by the waveforms of low-frequency stimuli. Lateralization was measured for low-frequency Gaussian noises, the same noises transposed to 4 kHz, and high-frequency Gaussian bands of noise centered at 4 kHz. Extents of laterality obtained with the transposed stimuli were greater than those obtained with bands of Gaussian noise centered at 4 kHz and, in some cases, were equivalent to those obtained with low-frequency stimuli. In a second experiment, the general effects on lateral position produced by imposed combinations of bandwidth, ITD, and interaural phase disparities (IPDs) on low-frequency stimuli remained when those stimuli were transposed to 4 kHz. Overall, the data were fairly well accounted for by a model that computes the cross-correlation subsequent to known stages of peripheral auditory processing augmented by low-pass filtering of the envelopes within the high-frequency channels of each ear.

  12. Comparison of EEG propagation speeds under emotional stimuli on smartphone between the different anxiety states

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asakawa, Tetsuya; Muramatsu, Ayumi; Hayashi, Takuto; Urata, Tatsuya; Taya, Masato; Mizuno-Matsumoto, Yuko

    2014-01-01

    The current study evaluated the effect of different anxiety states on information processing as measured by an electroencephalography (EEG) using emotional stimuli on a smartphone. Twenty-three healthy subjects were assessed for their anxiety states using The State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and divided into two groups: low anxiety (I, II) or high anxiety (III and IV, V). An EEG was performed while the participant was presented with emotionally laden audiovisual stimuli (resting, pleasant, and unpleasant sessions) and emotionally laden sentence stimuli (pleasant sentence, unpleasant sentence sessions) and EEG data was analyzed using propagation speed analysis. The propagation speed of the low anxiety group at the medial coronal for resting stimuli for all time segments was higher than those of high anxiety group. The low anxiety group propagation speeds at the medial sagittal for unpleasant stimuli in the 0–30 and 60–150 s time frames were higher than those of high anxiety group. The propagation speeds at 150 s for all stimuli in the low anxiety group were significantly higher than the correspondent propagation speeds of the high anxiety group. These events suggest that neural information processes concerning emotional stimuli differ based on current anxiety state. PMID:25540618

  13. Divided attention enhances the recognition of emotional stimuli: evidence from the attentional boost effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossi-Arnaud, Clelia; Spataro, Pietro; Costanzi, Marco; Saraulli, Daniele; Cestari, Vincenzo

    2018-01-01

    The present study examined predictions of the early-phase-elevated-attention hypothesis of the attentional boost effect (ABE), which suggests that transient increases in attention at encoding, as instantiated in the ABE paradigm, should enhance the recognition of neutral and positive items (whose encoding is mostly based on controlled processes), while having small or null effects on the recognition of negative items (whose encoding is primarily based on automatic processes). Participants were presented a sequence of negative, neutral and positive stimuli (pictures in Experiment 1, words in Experiment 2) associated to target (red) squares, distractor (green) squares or no squares (baseline condition). They were told to attend to the pictures/words and simultaneously press the spacebar of the computer when a red square appeared. In a later recognition task, stimuli associated to target squares were recognised better than stimuli associated to distractor squares, replicating the standard ABE. More importantly, we also found that: (a) the memory enhancement following target detection occurred with all types of stimuli (neutral, negative and positive) and (b) the advantage of negative stimuli over neutral stimuli was intact in the DA condition. These findings suggest that the encoding of negative stimuli depends on both controlled (attention-dependent) and automatic (attention-independent) processes.

  14. Individual variation in habituation: behaviour over time toward different stimuli in threespine sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Alison M.; Peeke, Harman V.S.

    2014-01-01

    Habituation, or the relatively permanent waning of a response as a result of repeated stimulation, is a form of behavioural plasticity that allows animals to filter out irrelevant stimuli and to focus selectively on important stimuli. Individuals that fail to habituate might be at a disadvantage if they continue to respond to irrelevant stimuli; therefore, habituation can have adaptive significance. In this study we compared rates of behaviour over time toward three different ecologically-relevant stimuli (food, a male intruder and a gravid female) in threespine sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus). We detected evidence for habituation to the stimuli, and males in this study were especially aggressive toward both male and female conspecifics. Although there were some clear temporal patterns that could be detected by looking at average behaviour, not all individuals behaved in the same ‘average’ way. We detected substantial inter-individual variation in behaviour toward all three stimuli, inter-individual variation in rates of habituation to both male and female conspecifics, but no evidence for correlations between behaviours across stimuli (behavioural syndromes). These results suggest that individual animals vary in rates of habituation, and prompt hypotheses about the causes and consequences of variation in rates of habituation. PMID:25678715

  15. Attentional load modulates responses of human primary visual cortex to invisible stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahrami, Bahador; Lavie, Nilli; Rees, Geraint

    2007-03-20

    Visual neuroscience has long sought to determine the extent to which stimulus-evoked activity in visual cortex depends on attention and awareness. Some influential theories of consciousness maintain that the allocation of attention is restricted to conscious representations [1, 2]. However, in the load theory of attention [3], competition between task-relevant and task-irrelevant stimuli for limited-capacity attention does not depend on conscious perception of the irrelevant stimuli. The critical test is whether the level of attentional load in a relevant task would determine unconscious neural processing of invisible stimuli. Human participants were scanned with high-field fMRI while they performed a foveal task of low or high attentional load. Irrelevant, invisible monocular stimuli were simultaneously presented peripherally and were continuously suppressed by a flashing mask in the other eye [4]. Attentional load in the foveal task strongly modulated retinotopic activity evoked in primary visual cortex (V1) by the invisible stimuli. Contrary to traditional views [1, 2, 5, 6], we found that availability of attentional capacity determines neural representations related to unconscious processing of continuously suppressed stimuli in human primary visual cortex. Spillover of attention to cortical representations of invisible stimuli (under low load) cannot be a sufficient condition for their awareness.

  16. Neural evidence for reduced apprehensiveness of familiarized stimuli in a mere exposure paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zebrowitz, Leslie A; Zhang, Yi

    2012-07-01

    Mere familiarization with a stimulus increases liking for it or similar stimuli ("mere exposure" effects) as well as perceptual fluency, indexed by the speed and accuracy of categorizing it or similar stimuli ("priming" effects). Candidate mechanisms proposed to explain mere exposure effects include both increased positive affect associated with greater perceptual fluency, and reduced negative affect associated with diminished apprehensiveness of novel stimuli. Although these two mechanisms are not mutually exclusive, it is difficult for behavioral measures to disentangle them, since increased liking or other indices of greater positive affect toward exposed stimuli could result from increases in positive feelings or decreases in negative feelings or both. The present study sought to clarify this issue by building on research showing a dissociation at the neural level in which the lateral orbitofrontal cortex (LOFC) is activated more by negatively valenced than by neutral or positively valenced stimuli, with the reverse effect for medial orbitofrontal cortex (MOFC). Supporting the reduced apprehensiveness hypothesis, we found lower LOFC activation to familiarized faces and objects (repetition suppression). We did not find evidence to support the positive affect hypothesis in increased activation to familiarized stimuli in MOFC or in other parts of the reward circuit that respond more to positively valenced stimuli (repetition enhancement), although enhancement effects were shown in some regions.

  17. Conformation and structural changes of diblock copolymers with octopus-like micelle formation in the presence of external stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dammertz, K.; Saier, A. M.; Marti, O.; Amirkhani, M.

    2014-04-01

    External stimuli such as vapours and electric fields can be used to manipulate the formation of AB-diblock copolymers on surfaces. We study the conformational variation of PS-b-PMMA (polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate)), PS and PMMA adsorbed on mica and their response to saturated water or chloroform atmospheres. Using specimens with only partial polymer coverage, new unanticipated effects were observed. Water vapour, a non-solvent for all three polymers, was found to cause high surface mobility. In contrast, chloroform vapour (a solvent for all three polymers) proved to be less efficient. Furthermore, the influence of an additional applied electric field was investigated. A dc field oriented parallel to the sample surface induces the formation of polymer islands which assemble into wormlike chains. Moreover, PS-b-PMMA forms octopus-like micelles (OLMs) on mica. Under the external stimuli mentioned above, the wormlike formations of OLMs are able to align in the direction of the external electric field. In the absence of an electric field, the OLMs disaggregate and exhibit phase separated structures under chloroform vapour.

  18. Conformation and structural changes of diblock copolymers with octopus-like micelle formation in the presence of external stimuli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dammertz, K; Saier, A M; Marti, O; Amirkhani, M

    2014-01-01

    External stimuli such as vapours and electric fields can be used to manipulate the formation of AB-diblock copolymers on surfaces. We study the conformational variation of PS-b-PMMA (polystyrene-block-poly(methyl methacrylate)), PS and PMMA adsorbed on mica and their response to saturated water or chloroform atmospheres. Using specimens with only partial polymer coverage, new unanticipated effects were observed. Water vapour, a non-solvent for all three polymers, was found to cause high surface mobility. In contrast, chloroform vapour (a solvent for all three polymers) proved to be less efficient. Furthermore, the influence of an additional applied electric field was investigated. A dc field oriented parallel to the sample surface induces the formation of polymer islands which assemble into wormlike chains. Moreover, PS-b-PMMA forms octopus-like micelles (OLMs) on mica. Under the external stimuli mentioned above, the wormlike formations of OLMs are able to align in the direction of the external electric field. In the absence of an electric field, the OLMs disaggregate and exhibit phase separated structures under chloroform vapour. (paper)

  19. The Effect of Physiological Stimuli on Sarcopenia; Impact of Notch and Wnt Signaling on Impaired Aged Skeletal Muscle Repair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arthur, Susan Tsivitse; Cooley, Ian D.

    2012-01-01

    The age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass and function that is associated with sarcopenia can result in ultimate consequences such as decreased quality of life. The causes of sarcopenia are multifactorial and include environmental and biological factors. The purpose of this review is to synthesize what the literature reveals in regards to the cellular regulation of sarcopenia, including impaired muscle regenerative capacity in the aged, and to discuss if physiological stimuli have the potential to slow the loss of myogenic potential that is associated with sarcopenia. In addition, this review article will discuss the effect of aging on Notch and Wnt signaling, and whether physiological stimuli have the ability to restore Notch and Wnt signaling resulting in rejuvenated aged muscle repair. The intention of this summary is to bring awareness to the benefits of consistent physiological stimulus (exercise) to combating sarcopenia as well as proclaiming the usefulness of contraction-induced injury models to studying the effects of local and systemic influences on aged myogenic capability. PMID:22701343

  20. Neural processing of food and emotional stimuli in adolescent and adult anorexia nervosa patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forster, Clemens; Dörfler, Arnd; Lindsiepe, Silja; Heinrich, Hartmut; Graap, Holmer; Moll, Gunther H.; Kratz, Oliver

    2018-01-01

    Background A constant preoccupation with food and restrictive eating are main symptoms of anorexia nervosa (AN). Imaging studies revealed aberrant neural activation patterns in brain regions processing hedonic and reward reactions as well as–potentially aversive–emotions. An imbalance between so called “bottom-up” and “top-down” control areas is discussed. The present study is focusing on neural processing of disease-specific food stimuli and emotional stimuli and its developmental course in adolescent and adult AN patients and could offer new insight into differential mechanisms underlying shorter or more chronic disease. Methods 33 adolescents aged 12–18 years (15 AN patients, 18 control participants) and 32 adult women (16 AN patients, 16 control participants) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, 3T high-field scanner) while watching pictures of high and low-calorie food and affective stimuli. Afterwards, they rated subjective valence of each picture. FMRI data analysis was performed using a region of interest based approach. Results Pictures of high-calorie food items were rated more negatively by AN patients. Differences in activation between patients and controls were found in “bottom up” and “top down” control areas for food stimuli and in several emotion processing regions for affective stimuli which were more pronounced in adolescents than in adults. Conclusion A differential pattern was seen for food stimuli compared to generally emotion eliciting stimuli. Adolescents with AN show reduced processing of affective stimuli and enhanced activation of regions involved in “bottom up” reward processing and “top down” control as well as the insula with regard to food stimuli with a focus on brain regions which underlie changes during adolescent development. In adults less clear and less specific activation differences were present, pointing towards a high impact that regions undergoing maturation might have on AN

  1. Neural processing of food and emotional stimuli in adolescent and adult anorexia nervosa patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horndasch, Stefanie; Roesch, Julie; Forster, Clemens; Dörfler, Arnd; Lindsiepe, Silja; Heinrich, Hartmut; Graap, Holmer; Moll, Gunther H; Kratz, Oliver

    2018-01-01

    A constant preoccupation with food and restrictive eating are main symptoms of anorexia nervosa (AN). Imaging studies revealed aberrant neural activation patterns in brain regions processing hedonic and reward reactions as well as-potentially aversive-emotions. An imbalance between so called "bottom-up" and "top-down" control areas is discussed. The present study is focusing on neural processing of disease-specific food stimuli and emotional stimuli and its developmental course in adolescent and adult AN patients and could offer new insight into differential mechanisms underlying shorter or more chronic disease. 33 adolescents aged 12-18 years (15 AN patients, 18 control participants) and 32 adult women (16 AN patients, 16 control participants) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, 3T high-field scanner) while watching pictures of high and low-calorie food and affective stimuli. Afterwards, they rated subjective valence of each picture. FMRI data analysis was performed using a region of interest based approach. Pictures of high-calorie food items were rated more negatively by AN patients. Differences in activation between patients and controls were found in "bottom up" and "top down" control areas for food stimuli and in several emotion processing regions for affective stimuli which were more pronounced in adolescents than in adults. A differential pattern was seen for food stimuli compared to generally emotion eliciting stimuli. Adolescents with AN show reduced processing of affective stimuli and enhanced activation of regions involved in "bottom up" reward processing and "top down" control as well as the insula with regard to food stimuli with a focus on brain regions which underlie changes during adolescent development. In adults less clear and less specific activation differences were present, pointing towards a high impact that regions undergoing maturation might have on AN symptoms.

  2. Differential coactivation in a redundant signals task with weak and strong go/no-go stimuli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Minakata, Katsumi; Gondan, Matthias

    2018-01-01

    When participants respond to stimuli of two sources, response times (RT) are often faster when both stimuli are presented together relative to the RTs obtained when presented separately (redundant signals effect, RSE). Race models and coactivation models can explain the RSE. In race models......, separate channels process the two stimulus components, and the faster processing time determines the overall RT. In audiovisual experiments, the RSE is often higher than predicted by race models, and coactivation models have been proposed that assume integrated processing of the two stimuli. Where does...

  3. Amygdala activity related to enhanced memory for pleasant and aversive stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamann, S B; Ely, T D; Grafton, S T; Kilts, C D

    1999-03-01

    Pleasant or aversive events are better remembered than neutral events. Emotional enhancement of episodic memory has been linked to the amygdala in animal and neuropsychological studies. Using positron emission tomography, we show that bilateral amygdala activity during memory encoding is correlated with enhanced episodic recognition memory for both pleasant and aversive visual stimuli relative to neutral stimuli, and that this relationship is specific to emotional stimuli. Furthermore, data suggest that the amygdala enhances episodic memory in part through modulation of hippocampal activity. The human amygdala seems to modulate the strength of conscious memory for events according to emotional importance, regardless of whether the emotion is pleasant or aversive.

  4. Anti-ulcerogenic mechanism of magnesium in indomethacin ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Summary: The gastric mucosa is continuously exposed to various agents like food condiments, spices, alcohol, acids and drugs, some of which are implicated in the pathogenesis of gastric ulcer. Magnesium compounds commonly used as laxatives and antacids have been reported to prevent ulcer formation but the ...

  5. Anti-ulcerogenic mechanism of magnesium in indomethacin ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    olayemitoyin

    laxatives and antacids have been reported to prevent ulcer formation but the mechanisms underlying this potential is unknown. ..... quantity (Figure 3D) even though the indomethacin ... Barragan-Roddiguez, L., (2008): Efficacy and safety.

  6. Effects of acoustical stimuli delivered through hearing aids on tinnitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweetow, Robert W; Sabes, Jennifer Henderson

    2010-01-01

    range of preferences observed for fractal settings, with most participants preferring fractals with a slow or medium tempo and restricted dynamic range. The majority (86%) indicated that it was easier to relax while listening to fractal signals. Participants had preferences for certain programs and fractal characteristics. Although seven participants rated the noise-only condition as providing the least tinnitus annoyance, only two opted to have noise only as a program during the field trial, and none selected the noise-only condition as the preferred setting. Furthermore, while all four of the experienced hearing aid users selected noise as producing the least annoying tinnitus in the laboratory, only one selected it for field wear. Tinnitus Handicap Inventory and Tinnitus Reaction Questionnaire scores were improved over the course of the 6 mo trial, with clinically significant improvements occurring for over half of the participants on at least one of the measures. The results suggest that use of acoustic stimuli, particularly fractal tones, delivered though hearing aids can provide amplification while allowing for relief for some tinnitus sufferers. It is important to recognize, however, that tinnitus management procedures need to be supplemented with appropriate counseling. American Academy of Audiology.

  7. Assessment of distraction from erotic stimuli by nonerotic interference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Alex B; Hamilton, Lisa Dawn

    2015-01-01

    Distraction from erotic cues during sexual encounters is a major contributor to sexual difficulties in men and women. Being able to assess distraction in studies of sexual arousal will help clarify underlying contributions to sexual problems. The current study aimed to identify the most accurate assessment of distraction from erotic cues in healthy men (n = 29) and women (n = 38). Participants were assigned to a no distraction, low distraction, or high distraction condition. Distraction was induced using an auditory distraction task presented during the viewing of an erotic video. Attention to erotic cues was assessed using three methods: a written quiz, a visual quiz, and a self-reported distraction measure. Genital and psychological sexual responses were also measured. Self-reported distraction and written quiz scores most accurately represented the level of distraction present, while self-reported distraction also corresponded with a decrease in genital arousal. Findings support the usefulness of self-report measures in conjunction with a brief quiz on the erotic material as the most accurate and sensitive ways to simply measure experimentally-induced distraction. Insight into distraction assessment techniques will enable evaluation of naturally occurring distraction in patients suffering from sexual problems.

  8. Deciphering molecular circuits from genetic variation underlying transcriptional responsiveness to stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gat-Viks, Irit; Chevrier, Nicolas; Wilentzik, Roni; Eisenhaure, Thomas; Raychowdhury, Raktima; Steuerman, Yael; Shalek, Alex K; Hacohen, Nir; Amit, Ido; Regev, Aviv

    2013-04-01

    Individual genetic variation affects gene responsiveness to stimuli, often by influencing complex molecular circuits. Here we combine genomic and intermediate-scale transcriptional profiling with computational methods to identify variants that affect the responsiveness of genes to stimuli (responsiveness quantitative trait loci or reQTLs) and to position these variants in molecular circuit diagrams. We apply this approach to study variation in transcriptional responsiveness to pathogen components in dendritic cells from recombinant inbred mouse strains. We identify reQTLs that correlate with particular stimuli and position them in known pathways. For example, in response to a virus-like stimulus, a trans-acting variant responds as an activator of the antiviral response; using RNA interference, we identify Rgs16 as the likely causal gene. Our approach charts an experimental and analytic path to decipher the mechanisms underlying genetic variation in circuits that control responses to stimuli.

  9. Increased reward value of nonsocial stimuli in children and adolescents with autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karli K Watson

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available We used an econometric choice task to estimate the implicit reward value of social and nonsocial stimuli related to restricted interests in children and adolescents with (n=12 and without (n=22 ASD. Mixed effects logistic regression analyses revealed that children and adolescents with ASD were willing to receive less cash payout to view restricted interest stimuli, whereas children and adolescents without ASD were indifferent to cash payouts to view these images. Groups did not differ in valuation of social images or nonsocial images unrelated to restricted interests. Our findings reveal that individuals with ASD assign enhanced reward value of nonsocial stimuli related to restricted interests in ASD. These results suggest that motivational accounts of ASD should also consider the reward value of restricted interests in addition to that of social stimuli (Dichter & Adolphs, 2012.

  10. A Dual-Stimuli-Responsive Sodium-Bromine Battery with Ultrahigh Energy Density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Faxing; Yang, Hongliu; Zhang, Jian; Zhang, Panpan; Wang, Gang; Zhuang, Xiaodong; Cuniberti, Gianaurelio; Feng, Xinliang

    2018-06-01

    Stimuli-responsive energy storage devices have emerged for the fast-growing popularity of intelligent electronics. However, all previously reported stimuli-responsive energy storage devices have rather low energy densities (energy density, electrochromic effect, and fast thermal response is demonstrated. Remarkably, the fabricated Na//Br 2 battery exhibits a large operating voltage of 3.3 V and an energy density up to 760 Wh kg -1 , which outperforms those for the state-of-the-art stimuli-responsive electrochemical energy storage devices. This work offers a promising approach for designing multi-stimuli-responsive and high-energy rechargeable batteries without sacrificing the electrochemical performance. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. 4D bioprinting: the next-generation technology for biofabrication enabled by stimuli-responsive materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yi-Chen; Zhang, Yu Shrike; Akpek, Ali; Shin, Su Ryon; Khademhosseini, Ali

    2016-12-02

    Four-dimensional (4D) bioprinting, encompassing a wide range of disciplines including bioengineering, materials science, chemistry, and computer sciences, is emerging as the next-generation biofabrication technology. By utilizing stimuli-responsive materials and advanced three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting strategies, 4D bioprinting aims to create dynamic 3D patterned biological structures that can transform their shapes or behavior under various stimuli. In this review, we highlight the potential use of various stimuli-responsive materials for 4D printing and their extension into biofabrication. We first discuss the state of the art and limitations associated with current 3D printing modalities and their transition into the inclusion of the additional time dimension. We then suggest the potential use of different stimuli-responsive biomaterials as the bioink that may achieve 4D bioprinting where transformation of fabricated biological constructs can be realized. We finally conclude with future perspectives.

  12. Activation of right parietal cortex during memory retrieval of nonlinguistic auditory stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klostermann, Ellen C; Loui, Psyche; Shimamura, Arthur P

    2009-09-01

    In neuroimaging studies, the left ventral posterior parietal cortex (PPC) is particularly active during memory retrieval. However, most studies have used verbal or verbalizable stimuli. We investigated neural activations associated with the retrieval of short, agrammatical music stimuli (Blackwood, 2004), which have been largely associated with right hemisphere processing. At study, participants listened to music stimuli and rated them on pleasantness. At test, participants made old/new recognition judgments with high/low confidence ratings. Right, but not left, ventral PPC activity was observed during the retrieval of these music stimuli. Thus, rather than indicating a special status of left PPC in retrieval, both right and left ventral PPC participate in memory retrieval, depending on the type of information that is to be remembered.

  13. Influence of auditory and audiovisual stimuli on the right-left prevalence effect

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vu, Kim-Phuong L; Minakata, Katsumi; Ngo, Mary Kim

    2014-01-01

    occurs when the two-dimensional stimuli are audiovisual, as well as whether there will be cross-modal facilitation of response selection for the horizontal and vertical dimensions. We also examined whether there is an additional benefit of adding a pitch dimension to the auditory stimulus to facilitate...... vertical coding through use of the spatial-musical association of response codes (SMARC) effect, where pitch is coded in terms of height in space. In Experiment 1, we found a larger right-left prevalence effect for unimodal auditory than visual stimuli. Neutral, non-pitch coded, audiovisual stimuli did...... not result in cross-modal facilitation, but did show evidence of visual dominance. The right-left prevalence effect was eliminated in the presence of SMARC audiovisual stimuli, but the effect influenced horizontal rather than vertical coding. Experiment 2 showed that the influence of the pitch dimension...

  14. Changes in Plasma Copeptin Levels during Hemodialysis : Are the Physiological Stimuli Active in Hemodialysis Patients?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ettema, Esmee M.; Kuipers, Johanna; Assa, Solmaz; Bakker, Stephan J. L.; Groen, Henk; Westerhuis, Ralf; Gaillard, Carlo A. J. M.; Gansevoort, Ron T.; Franssen, Casper F. M.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Plasma levels of copeptin, a surrogate marker for the vasoconstrictor hormone arginine vasopressin (AVP), are increased in hemodialysis patients. Presently, it is unknown what drives copeptin levels in hemodialysis patients. We investigated whether the established physiological stimuli

  15. Suppressed visual looming stimuli are not integrated with auditory looming signals: Evidence from continuous flash suppression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moors, Pieter; Huygelier, Hanne; Wagemans, Johan; de-Wit, Lee; van Ee, Raymond

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies using binocular rivalry have shown that signals in a modality other than the visual can bias dominance durations depending on their congruency with the rivaling stimuli. More recently, studies using continuous flash suppression (CFS) have reported that multisensory integration influences how long visual stimuli remain suppressed. In this study, using CFS, we examined whether the contrast thresholds for detecting visual looming stimuli are influenced by a congruent auditory stimulus. In Experiment 1, we show that a looming visual stimulus can result in lower detection thresholds compared to a static concentric grating, but that auditory tone pips congruent with the looming stimulus did not lower suppression thresholds any further. In Experiments 2, 3, and 4, we again observed no advantage for congruent multisensory stimuli. These results add to our understanding of the conditions under which multisensory integration is possible, and suggest that certain forms of multisensory integration are not evident when the visual stimulus is suppressed from awareness using CFS.

  16. Iconic-Memory Processing of Unfamiliar Stimuli by Retarded and Nonretarded Individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hornstein, Henry A.; Mosley, James L.

    1979-01-01

    The iconic-memory processing of unfamiliar stimuli by 11 mentally retarded males (mean age 22 years) was undertaken employing a visually cued partial-report procedure and a visual masking procedure. (Author/CL)

  17. Affective states leak into movement execution: Automatic avoidance of threatening stimuli in fear of spider is visible in reach trajectories

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buetti, S.; Juan, E.; Rinck, M.; Kerzel, D.

    2012-01-01

    Approach-like actions are initiated faster with stimuli of positive valence. Conversely, avoidance-like actions are initiated faster with threatening stimuli of negative valence. We went beyond reaction time measures and investigated whether threatening stimuli also affect the way in which an action

  18. Do Live versus Audio-Recorded Narrative Stimuli Influence Young Children's Narrative Comprehension and Retell Quality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young-Suk Grace

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The primary aim of the present study was to examine whether different ways of presenting narrative stimuli (i.e., live narrative stimuli versus audio-recorded narrative stimuli) influence children's performances on narrative comprehension and oral-retell quality. Method: Children in kindergarten (n = 54), second grade (n = 74), and fourth…

  19. Long-latency auditory evoked potentials with verbal and nonverbal stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppitz, Sheila Jacques; Didoné, Dayane Domeneghini; Silva, Débora Durigon da; Gois, Marjana; Folgearini, Jordana; Ferreira, Geise Corrêa; Garcia, Michele Vargas

    2015-01-01

    Long-latency auditory evoked potentials represent the cortical activity related to attention, memory, and auditory discrimination skills. Acoustic signal processing occurs differently between verbal and nonverbal stimuli, influencing the latency and amplitude patterns. To describe the latencies of the cortical potentials P1, N1, P2, N2, and P3, as well as P3 amplitude, with different speech stimuli and tone bursts, and to classify them in the presence and absence of these data. A total of 30 subjects with normal hearing were assessed, aged 18-32 years old, matched by gender. Nonverbal stimuli were used (tone burst; 1000Hz - frequent and 4000Hz - rare); and verbal (/ba/ - frequent; /ga/, /da/, and /di/ - rare). Considering the component N2 for tone burst, the lowest latency found was 217.45ms for the BA/DI stimulus; the highest latency found was 256.5ms. For the P3 component, the shortest latency with tone burst stimuli was 298.7 with BA/GA stimuli, the highest, was 340ms. For the P3 amplitude, there was no statistically significant difference among the different stimuli. For latencies of components P1, N1, P2, N2, P3, there were no statistical differences among them, regardless of the stimuli used. There was a difference in the latency of potentials N2 and P3 among the stimuli employed but no difference was observed for the P3 amplitude. Copyright © 2015 Associação Brasileira de Otorrinolaringologia e Cirurgia Cérvico-Facial. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  20. Statistical modeling of the response characteristics of mechanosensitive stimuli in the human esophagus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drewes, A.M.; Reddy, H.; Staahl, C.

    2005-01-01

    by using a statistical model based on correlation analysis. The esophagus was distended with a bag in 32 healthy subjects by using an inflation rate of 25 mL/min. The luminal cross-sectional areas and sensory ratings were determined during the distentions. The stimuli were repeated after relaxation...... of mechanical gut stimuli in human beings. This might increase our understanding of visceral pain in health and disease and guide the statistical analysis of experimental data obtained in the gastrointestinal tract....

  1. Prevailing theories of consciousness are challenged by novel cross-modal associations acquired between subliminal stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Ryan B; Samaha, Jason; Chrisley, Ron; Dienes, Zoltan

    2018-06-01

    While theories of consciousness differ substantially, the 'conscious access hypothesis', which aligns consciousness with the global accessibility of information across cortical regions, is present in many of the prevailing frameworks. This account holds that consciousness is necessary to integrate information arising from independent functions such as the specialist processing required by different senses. We directly tested this account by evaluating the potential for associative learning between novel pairs of subliminal stimuli presented in different sensory modalities. First, pairs of subliminal stimuli were presented and then their association assessed by examining the ability of the first stimulus to prime classification of the second. In Experiments 1-4 the stimuli were word-pairs consisting of a male name preceding either a creative or uncreative profession. Participants were subliminally exposed to two name-profession pairs where one name was paired with a creative profession and the other an uncreative profession. A supraliminal task followed requiring the timed classification of one of those two professions. The target profession was preceded by either the name with which it had been subliminally paired (concordant) or the alternate name (discordant). Experiment 1 presented stimuli auditorily, Experiment 2 visually, and Experiment 3 presented names auditorily and professions visually. All three experiments revealed the same inverse priming effect with concordant test pairs associated with significantly slower classification judgements. Experiment 4 sought to establish if learning would be more efficient with supraliminal stimuli and found evidence that a different strategy is adopted when stimuli are consciously perceived. Finally, Experiment 5 replicated the unconscious cross-modal association achieved in Experiment 3 utilising non-linguistic stimuli. The results demonstrate the acquisition of novel cross-modal associations between stimuli which are not

  2. The influence of response competition on cerebral asymmetries for processing hierarchical stimuli revealed by ERP recordings

    OpenAIRE

    Malinowski, Peter; Hübner, Ronald; Keil, Andreas; Gruber, Thomas

    2002-01-01

    It is widely accepted that the left and right hemispheres differ with respect to the processing of global and local aspects of visual stimuli. Recently, behavioural experiments have shown that this processing asymmetry strongly depends on the response competition between the global and local levels of a stimulus. Here we report electrophysiological data that underline this observation. Hemispheric differences for global/local processing were mainly observed for responseincompatible stimuli an...

  3. Emotion and Attention Interaction: a trade-off between stimuli relevance, motivation and individual differences

    OpenAIRE

    Leticia eOliveira; Izabela eMocaiber; Isabel A David; Fatima eErthal; Eliane eVolchan; Mirtes ePereira

    2013-01-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that the neural processing of emotional stimuli is prioritized. However, whether the processing of emotional stimuli is dependent on attention remains debatable. Several studies have investigated this issue by testing the capacity of emotional distracters to divert processing resources from an attentional main task. The attentional load theory postulates that the perceptual load of the main task determines the selective processing of the distracter. Although we agre...

  4. Dopamine modulates reward system activity during subconscious processing of sexual stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oei, Nicole Y L; Rombouts, Serge Arb; Soeter, Roelof P; van Gerven, Joop M; Both, Stephanie

    2012-06-01

    Dopaminergic medication influences conscious processing of rewarding stimuli, and is associated with impulsive-compulsive behaviors, such as hypersexuality. Previous studies have shown that subconscious subliminal presentation of sexual stimuli activates brain areas known to be part of the 'reward system'. In this study, it was hypothesized that dopamine modulates activation in key areas of the reward system, such as the nucleus accumbens, during subconscious processing of sexual stimuli. Young healthy males (n=53) were randomly assigned to two experimental groups or a control group, and were administered a dopamine antagonist (haloperidol), a dopamine agonist (levodopa), or placebo. Brain activation was assessed during a backward-masking task with subliminally presented sexual stimuli. Results showed that levodopa significantly enhanced the activation in the nucleus accumbens and dorsal anterior cingulate when subliminal sexual stimuli were shown, whereas haloperidol decreased activations in those areas. Dopamine thus enhances activations in regions thought to regulate 'wanting' in response to potentially rewarding sexual stimuli that are not consciously perceived. This running start of the reward system might explain the pull of rewards in individuals with compulsive reward-seeking behaviors such as hypersexuality and patients who receive dopaminergic medication.

  5. The Potential of Stimuli-Responsive Nanogels in Drug and Active Molecule Delivery for Targeted Therapy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Vicario-de-la-Torre

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Nanogels (NGs are currently under extensive investigation due to their unique properties, such as small particle size, high encapsulation efficiency and protection of active agents from degradation, which make them ideal candidates as drug delivery systems (DDS. Stimuli-responsive NGs are cross-linked nanoparticles (NPs, composed of polymers, natural, synthetic, or a combination thereof that can swell by absorption (uptake of large amounts of solvent, but not dissolve due to the constituent structure of the polymeric network. NGs can undergo change from a polymeric solution (swell form to a hard particle (collapsed form in response to (i physical stimuli such as temperature, ionic strength, magnetic or electric fields; (ii chemical stimuli such as pH, ions, specific molecules or (iii biochemical stimuli such as enzymatic substrates or affinity ligands. The interest in NGs comes from their multi-stimuli nature involving reversible phase transitions in response to changes in the external media in a faster way than macroscopic gels or hydrogels due to their nanometric size. NGs have a porous structure able to encapsulate small molecules such as drugs and genes, then releasing them by changing their volume when external stimuli are applied.

  6. Usage of drip drops as stimuli in an auditory P300 BCI paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Minqiang; Jin, Jing; Zhang, Yu; Hu, Dewen; Wang, Xingyu

    2018-02-01

    Recently, many auditory BCIs are using beeps as auditory stimuli, while beeps sound unnatural and unpleasant for some people. It is proved that natural sounds make people feel comfortable, decrease fatigue, and improve the performance of auditory BCI systems. Drip drop is a kind of natural sounds that makes humans feel relaxed and comfortable. In this work, three kinds of drip drops were used as stimuli in an auditory-based BCI system to improve the user-friendness of the system. This study explored whether drip drops could be used as stimuli in the auditory BCI system. The auditory BCI paradigm with drip-drop stimuli, which was called the drip-drop paradigm (DP), was compared with the auditory paradigm with beep stimuli, also known as the beep paradigm (BP), in items of event-related potential amplitudes, online accuracies and scores on the likability and difficulty to demonstrate the advantages of DP. DP obtained significantly higher online accuracy and information transfer rate than the BP ( p  < 0.05, Wilcoxon signed test; p  < 0.05, Wilcoxon signed test). Besides, DP obtained higher scores on the likability with no significant difference on the difficulty ( p  < 0.05, Wilcoxon signed test). The results showed that the drip drops were reliable acoustic materials as stimuli in an auditory BCI system.

  7. Happiness takes you right: the effect of emotional stimuli on line bisection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cattaneo, Zaira; Lega, Carlotta; Boehringer, Jana; Gallucci, Marcello; Girelli, Luisa; Carbon, Claus-Christian

    2014-01-01

    Emotion recognition is mediated by a complex network of cortical and subcortical areas, with the two hemispheres likely being differently involved in processing positive and negative emotions. As results on valence-dependent hemispheric specialisation are quite inconsistent, we carried out three experiments with emotional stimuli with a task being sensitive to measure specific hemispheric processing. Participants were required to bisect visual lines that were delimited by emotional face flankers, or to haptically bisect rods while concurrently listening to emotional vocal expressions. We found that prolonged (but not transient) exposition to concurrent happy stimuli significantly shifted the bisection bias to the right compared to both sad and neutral stimuli, indexing a greater involvement of the left hemisphere in processing of positively connoted stimuli. No differences between sad and neutral stimuli were observed across the experiments. In sum, our data provide consistent evidence in favour of a greater involvement of the left hemisphere in processing positive emotions and suggest that (prolonged) exposure to stimuli expressing happiness significantly affects allocation of (spatial) attentional resources, regardless of the sensory (visual/auditory) modality in which the emotion is perceived and space is explored (visual/haptic).

  8. Effects of Temporal Congruity Between Auditory and Visual Stimuli Using Rapid Audio-Visual Serial Presentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Xingwei; Tang, Jiabei; Liu, Shuang; He, Feng; Qi, Hongzhi; Wan, Baikun; Ming, Dong

    2016-10-01

    Combining visual and auditory stimuli in event-related potential (ERP)-based spellers gained more attention in recent years. Few of these studies notice the difference of ERP components and system efficiency caused by the shifting of visual and auditory onset. Here, we aim to study the effect of temporal congruity of auditory and visual stimuli onset on bimodal brain-computer interface (BCI) speller. We designed five visual and auditory combined paradigms with different visual-to-auditory delays (-33 to +100 ms). Eleven participants attended in this study. ERPs were acquired and aligned according to visual and auditory stimuli onset, respectively. ERPs of Fz, Cz, and PO7 channels were studied through the statistical analysis of different conditions both from visual-aligned ERPs and audio-aligned ERPs. Based on the visual-aligned ERPs, classification accuracy was also analyzed to seek the effects of visual-to-auditory delays. The latencies of ERP components depended mainly on the visual stimuli onset. Auditory stimuli onsets influenced mainly on early component accuracies, whereas visual stimuli onset determined later component accuracies. The latter, however, played a dominate role in overall classification. This study is important for further studies to achieve better explanations and ultimately determine the way to optimize the bimodal BCI application.

  9. Investigating Deviance Distraction and the Impact of the Modality of the To-Be-Ignored Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsja, Erik; Neely, Gregory; Ljungberg, Jessica K

    2018-03-01

    It has been suggested that deviance distraction is caused by unexpected sensory events in the to-be-ignored stimuli violating the cognitive system's predictions of incoming stimuli. The majority of research has used methods where the to-be-ignored expected (standards) and the unexpected (deviants) stimuli are presented within the same modality. Less is known about the behavioral impact of deviance distraction when the to-be-ignored stimuli are presented in different modalities (e.g., standard and deviants presented in different modalities). In three experiments using cross-modal oddball tasks with mixed-modality to-be-ignored stimuli, we examined the distractive role of unexpected auditory deviants presented in a continuous stream of expected standard vibrations. The results showed that deviance distraction seems to be dependent upon the to-be-ignored stimuli being presented within the same modality, and that the simplest omission of something expected; in this case, a standard vibration may be enough to capture attention and distract performance.

  10. Negative emotional stimuli reduce contextual cueing but not response times in inefficient search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunar, Melina A; Watson, Derrick G; Cole, Louise; Cox, Angeline

    2014-02-01

    In visual search, previous work has shown that negative stimuli narrow the focus of attention and speed reaction times (RTs). This paper investigates these two effects by first asking whether negative emotional stimuli narrow the focus of attention to reduce the learning of a display context in a contextual cueing task and, second, whether exposure to negative stimuli also reduces RTs in inefficient search tasks. In Experiment 1, participants viewed either negative or neutral images (faces or scenes) prior to a contextual cueing task. In a typical contextual cueing experiment, RTs are reduced if displays are repeated across the experiment compared with novel displays that are not repeated. The results showed that a smaller contextual cueing effect was obtained after participants viewed negative stimuli than when they viewed neutral stimuli. However, in contrast to previous work, overall search RTs were not faster after viewing negative stimuli (Experiments 2 to 4). The findings are discussed in terms of the impact of emotional content on visual processing and the ability to use scene context to help facilitate search.

  11. Non-target adjacent stimuli classification improves performance of classical ERP-based brain computer interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceballos, G. A.; Hernández, L. F.

    2015-04-01

    Objective. The classical ERP-based speller, or P300 Speller, is one of the most commonly used paradigms in the field of Brain Computer Interfaces (BCI). Several alterations to the visual stimuli presentation system have been developed to avoid unfavorable effects elicited by adjacent stimuli. However, there has been little, if any, regard to useful information contained in responses to adjacent stimuli about spatial location of target symbols. This paper aims to demonstrate that combining the classification of non-target adjacent stimuli with standard classification (target versus non-target) significantly improves classical ERP-based speller efficiency. Approach. Four SWLDA classifiers were trained and combined with the standard classifier: the lower row, upper row, right column and left column classifiers. This new feature extraction procedure and the classification method were carried out on three open databases: the UAM P300 database (Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, Mexico), BCI competition II (dataset IIb) and BCI competition III (dataset II). Main results. The inclusion of the classification of non-target adjacent stimuli improves target classification in the classical row/column paradigm. A gain in mean single trial classification of 9.6% and an overall improvement of 25% in simulated spelling speed was achieved. Significance. We have provided further evidence that the ERPs produced by adjacent stimuli present discriminable features, which could provide additional information about the spatial location of intended symbols. This work promotes the searching of information on the peripheral stimulation responses to improve the performance of emerging visual ERP-based spellers.

  12. Gene expression analysis in response to osmotic stimuli in the intervertebral disc with DNA microarray.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wenzhi; Li, Xu; Shang, Xifu; Zhao, Qichun; Hu, Yefeng; Xu, Xiang; He, Rui; Duan, Liqun; Zhang, Feng

    2013-12-27

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) cells experience a broad range of physicochemical stimuli under physiologic conditions, including alterations in their osmotic environment. At present, the molecular mechanisms underlying osmotic regulation in IVD cells are poorly understood. This study aims to screen genes affected by changes in osmotic pressure in cells of subjects aged 29 to 63 years old, with top-scoring pair (TSP) method. Gene expression data set GSE1648 was downloaded from Gene Expression Omnibus database, including four hyper-osmotic stimuli samples, four iso-osmotic stimuli samples, and three hypo-osmotic stimuli samples. A novel, simple method, referred to as the TSP, was used in this study. Through this method, there was no need to perform data normalization and transformation before data analysis. A total of five pairs of genes ((CYP2A6, FNTB), (PRPF8, TARDBP), (RPS5, OAZ1), (SLC25A3, NPM1) and (CBX3, SRSF9)) were selected based on the TSP method. We inferred that all these genes might play important roles in response to osmotic stimuli and age in IVD cells. Additionally, hyper-osmotic and iso-osmotic stimuli conditions were adverse factors for IVD cells. We anticipate that our results will provide new thoughts and methods for the study of IVD disease.

  13. Anxiety and autonomic response to social-affective stimuli in individuals with Williams syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Rowena; Bellugi, Ursula; Järvinen, Anna

    2016-12-01

    Williams syndrome (WS) is a genetic condition characterized by an unusual "hypersocial" personality juxtaposed by high anxiety. Recent evidence suggests that autonomic reactivity to affective face stimuli is disorganised in WS, which may contribute to emotion dysregulation and/or social disinhibition. Electrodermal activity (EDA) and mean interbeat interval (IBI) of 25 participants with WS (19 - 57 years old) and 16 typically developing (TD; 17-43 years old) adults were measured during a passive presentation of affective face and voice stimuli. The Beck Anxiety Inventory was administered to examine associations between autonomic reactivity to social-affective stimuli and anxiety symptomatology. The WS group was characterized by higher overall anxiety symptomatology, and poorer anger recognition in social visual and aural stimuli relative to the TD group. No between-group differences emerged in autonomic response patterns. Notably, for participants with WS, increased anxiety was uniquely associated with diminished arousal to angry faces and voices. In contrast, for the TD group, no associations emerged between anxiety and physiological responsivity to social-emotional stimuli. The anxiety associated with WS appears to be intimately related to reduced autonomic arousal to angry social stimuli, which may also be linked to the characteristic social disinhibition. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Preserved suppression of salient irrelevant stimuli during visual search in Age-Associated Memory Impairment

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    Laura eLorenzo-López

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have suggested that older adults with age-associated memory impairment (AAMI may show a significant decline in attentional resource capacity and inhibitory processes in addition to memory impairment. In the present paper, the potential attentional capture by task-irrelevant stimuli was examined in older adults with AAMI compared to healthy older adults using scalp-recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs. ERPs were recorded during the execution of a visual search task, in which the participants had to detect the presence of a target stimulus that differed from distractors by orientation. To explore the automatic attentional capture phenomenon, an irrelevant distractor stimulus defined by a different feature (color was also presented without previous knowledge of the participants. A consistent N2pc, an electrophysiological indicator of attentional deployment, was present for target stimuli but not for task-irrelevant color stimuli, suggesting that these irrelevant distractors did not attract attention in AAMI older adults. Furthermore, the N2pc for targets was significantly delayed in AAMI patients compared to healthy older controls. Together, these findings suggest a specific impairment of the attentional selection process of relevant target stimuli in these individuals and indicate that the mechanism of top-down suppression of entirely task-irrelevant stimuli is preserved, at least when the target and the irrelevant stimuli are perceptually very different.

  15. Are females more responsive to emotional stimuli? A neurophysiological study across arousal and valence dimensions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lithari, C; Frantzidis, C A; Papadelis, C; Vivas, Ana B; Klados, M A; Kourtidou-Papadeli, C; Pappas, C; Ioannides, A A; Bamidis, P D

    2010-03-01

    Men and women seem to process emotions and react to them differently. Yet, few neurophysiological studies have systematically investigated gender differences in emotional processing. Here, we studied gender differences using Event Related Potentials (ERPs) and Skin Conductance Responses (SCR) recorded from participants who passively viewed emotional pictures selected from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS). The arousal and valence dimension of the stimuli were manipulated orthogonally. The peak amplitude and peak latency of ERP components and SCR were analyzed separately, and the scalp topographies of significant ERP differences were documented. Females responded with enhanced negative components (N100 and N200), in comparison to males, especially to the unpleasant visual stimuli, whereas both genders responded faster to high arousing or unpleasant stimuli. Scalp topographies revealed more pronounced gender differences on central and left hemisphere areas. Our results suggest a difference in the way emotional stimuli are processed by genders: unpleasant and high arousing stimuli evoke greater ERP amplitudes in women relatively to men. It also seems that unpleasant or high arousing stimuli are temporally prioritized during visual processing by both genders.

  16. Auditory-visual aversive stimuli modulate the conscious experience of fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taffou, Marine; Guerchouche, Rachid; Drettakis, George; Viaud-Delmon, Isabelle

    2013-01-01

    In a natural environment, affective information is perceived via multiple senses, mostly audition and vision. However, the impact of multisensory information on affect remains relatively undiscovered. In this study, we investigated whether the auditory-visual presentation of aversive stimuli influences the experience of fear. We used the advantages of virtual reality to manipulate multisensory presentation and to display potentially fearful dog stimuli embedded in a natural context. We manipulated the affective reactions evoked by the dog stimuli by recruiting two groups of participants: dog-fearful and non-fearful participants. The sensitivity to dog fear was assessed psychometrically by a questionnaire and also at behavioral and subjective levels using a Behavioral Avoidance Test (BAT). Participants navigated in virtual environments, in which they encountered virtual dog stimuli presented through the auditory channel, the visual channel or both. They were asked to report their fear using Subjective Units of Distress. We compared the fear for unimodal (visual or auditory) and bimodal (auditory-visual) dog stimuli. Dog-fearful participants as well as non-fearful participants reported more fear in response to bimodal audiovisual compared to unimodal presentation of dog stimuli. These results suggest that fear is more intense when the affective information is processed via multiple sensory pathways, which might be due to a cross-modal potentiation. Our findings have implications for the field of virtual reality-based therapy of phobias. Therapies could be refined and improved by implicating and manipulating the multisensory presentation of the feared situations.

  17. Morphological variation of stimuli-responsive polypeptide at air–water interface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shin, Sungchul; Ahn, Sungmin; Cheng, Jie; Chang, Hyejin; Jung, Dae-Hong; Hyun, Jinho

    2016-01-01

    Graphical abstract: - Highlights: • It is the first report on the interfacial properties of ELP monolayers formed at the air–water interface. • ELP monolayers could be prepared with high stability at the air–water interface. • The compressive behavior of thermo-sensitive ELP monolayers was imaged. • The SERS spectra showed a change in the ELP secondary structure at different preparation conditions. - Abstract: The morphological variation of stimuli-responsive polypeptide molecules at the air–water interface as a function of temperature and compression was described. The surface pressure–area (π–A) isotherms of an elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) monolayer were obtained under variable external conditions, and Langmuir–Blodgett (LB) monolayers were deposited onto a mica substrate for characterization. As the compression of the ELP monolayer increased, the surface pressure increased gradually, indicating that the ELP monolayer could be prepared with high stability at the air–water interface. The temperature in the subphase of the ELP monolayer was critical in the preparation of LB monolayers. The change in temperature induced a shift in the π–A isotherms as well as a change in ELP secondary structures. Surprisingly, the compression of the ELP monolayer influenced the ELP secondary structure due to the reduction in the phase transition temperature with decreasing temperature. The change in the ELP secondary structure formed at the air–water interface was investigated by surface-enhanced Raman scattering. Moreover, the morphology of the ELP monolayer was subsequently imaged using atomic force microscopy. The temperature responsive behavior resulted in changes in surface morphology from relatively flat structures to rugged labyrinth structures, which suggested conformational changes in the ELP monolayers.

  18. Morphological variation of stimuli-responsive polypeptide at air–water interface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shin, Sungchul; Ahn, Sungmin; Cheng, Jie [Department of Biosystems and Biomaterials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921 (Korea, Republic of); Chang, Hyejin; Jung, Dae-Hong [Department of Chemical Education, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-741 (Korea, Republic of); Hyun, Jinho, E-mail: jhyun@snu.ac.kr [Department of Biosystems and Biomaterials Science and Engineering, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921 (Korea, Republic of); Research Institute of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921 (Korea, Republic of); Center for Food and Bioconvergence, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921, Republic of Korea. (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-12-01

    Graphical abstract: - Highlights: • It is the first report on the interfacial properties of ELP monolayers formed at the air–water interface. • ELP monolayers could be prepared with high stability at the air–water interface. • The compressive behavior of thermo-sensitive ELP monolayers was imaged. • The SERS spectra showed a change in the ELP secondary structure at different preparation conditions. - Abstract: The morphological variation of stimuli-responsive polypeptide molecules at the air–water interface as a function of temperature and compression was described. The surface pressure–area (π–A) isotherms of an elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) monolayer were obtained under variable external conditions, and Langmuir–Blodgett (LB) monolayers were deposited onto a mica substrate for characterization. As the compression of the ELP monolayer increased, the surface pressure increased gradually, indicating that the ELP monolayer could be prepared with high stability at the air–water interface. The temperature in the subphase of the ELP monolayer was critical in the preparation of LB monolayers. The change in temperature induced a shift in the π–A isotherms as well as a change in ELP secondary structures. Surprisingly, the compression of the ELP monolayer influenced the ELP secondary structure due to the reduction in the phase transition temperature with decreasing temperature. The change in the ELP secondary structure formed at the air–water interface was investigated by surface-enhanced Raman scattering. Moreover, the morphology of the ELP monolayer was subsequently imaged using atomic force microscopy. The temperature responsive behavior resulted in changes in surface morphology from relatively flat structures to rugged labyrinth structures, which suggested conformational changes in the ELP monolayers.

  19. Hallucinogens as discriminative stimuli in animals: LSD, phenethylamines, and tryptamines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, J C

    2009-04-01

    Although man's first encounters with hallucinogens predate written history, it was not until the rise of the sister disciplines of organic chemistry and pharmacology in the nineteenth century that scientific studies became possible. Mescaline was the first to be isolated and its chemical structure determined. Since then, additional drugs have been recovered from their natural sources and synthetic chemists have contributed many more. Given their profound effects upon human behavior and the need for verbal communication to access many of these effects, some see humans as ideal subjects for study of hallucinogens. However, if we are to determine the mechanisms of action of these agents, establish hypotheses testable in human subjects, and explore the mechanistic links between hallucinogens and such apparently disparate topics as idiopathic psychosis, transcendental states, drug abuse, stress disorders, and cognitive dysfunction, studies in animals are essential. Stimulus control by hallucinogens has provided an intuitively attractive approach to the study of these agents in nonverbal species. The intent of this review is to provide a brief account of events from the time of the first demonstration of hallucinogen-induced stimulus control to the present. In general, the review is limited to lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and the hallucinogenic derivatives of phenethylamine and tryptamine. The pharmacological basis for stimulus control by LSD and hallucinogenic phenethylamines and tryptamines is serotonergic in nature. The 5-HT(2A) receptor appears to be the primary site of action with significant modulation by other serotonergic sites including 5-HT(2C) and 5-HT(1A) receptors. Interactions with other neurotransmitters, especially glutamate and dopamine, are under active investigation. Most studies to date have been conducted in the rat but transgenic mice offer interesting possibilities. Hallucinogen-induced stimulus control provides a unique behavioral tool for the

  20. Testing food-related inhibitory control to high- and low-calorie food stimuli: Electrophysiological responses to high-calorie food stimuli predict calorie and carbohydrate intake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbine, Kaylie A; Christensen, Edward; LeCheminant, James D; Bailey, Bruce W; Tucker, Larry A; Larson, Michael J

    2017-07-01

    Maintaining a healthy diet has important implications for physical and mental health. One factor that may influence diet and food consumption is inhibitory control-the ability to withhold a dominant response in order to correctly respond to environmental demands. We examined how N2 amplitude, an ERP that reflects inhibitory control processes, differed toward high- and low-calorie food stimuli and related to food intake. A total of 159 participants (81 female; M age = 23.5 years; SD = 7.6) completed two food-based go/no-go tasks (one with high-calorie and one with low-calorie food pictures as no-go stimuli) while N2 amplitude was recorded. Participants recorded food intake using the Automated Self-Administered 24-hour Dietary Recall system. Inhibiting responses toward high-calorie stimuli elicited a larger (i.e., more negative) no-go N2 amplitude; inhibiting responses toward low-calorie stimuli elicited a smaller no-go N2 amplitude. Participants were more accurate during the high-calorie than low-calorie task, but took longer to respond on go trials toward high-calorie rather than low-calorie stimuli. When controlling for age, gender, and BMI, larger high-calorie N2 difference amplitude predicted lower caloric intake (β = 0.17); low-calorie N2 difference amplitude was not related to caloric intake (β = -0.03). Exploratory analyses revealed larger high-calorie N2 difference amplitude predicted carbohydrate intake (β = 0.22), but not protein (β = 0.08) or fat (β = 0.11) intake. Results suggest that withholding responses from high-calorie foods requires increased recruitment of inhibitory control processes, which may be necessary to regulate food consumption, particularly for foods high in calories and carbohydrates. © 2017 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  1. Effects of auditory stimuli in the horizontal plane on audiovisual integration: an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Weiping; Li, Qi; Ochi, Tatsuya; Yang, Jingjing; Gao, Yulin; Tang, Xiaoyu; Takahashi, Satoshi; Wu, Jinglong

    2013-01-01

    This article aims to investigate whether auditory stimuli in the horizontal plane, particularly originating from behind the participant, affect audiovisual integration by using behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) measurements. In this study, visual stimuli were presented directly in front of the participants, auditory stimuli were presented at one location in an equidistant horizontal plane at the front (0°, the fixation point), right (90°), back (180°), or left (270°) of the participants, and audiovisual stimuli that include both visual stimuli and auditory stimuli originating from one of the four locations were simultaneously presented. These stimuli were presented randomly with equal probability; during this time, participants were asked to attend to the visual stimulus and respond promptly only to visual target stimuli (a unimodal visual target stimulus and the visual target of the audiovisual stimulus). A significant facilitation of reaction times and hit rates was obtained following audiovisual stimulation, irrespective of whether the auditory stimuli were presented in the front or back of the participant. However, no significant interactions were found between visual stimuli and auditory stimuli from the right or left. Two main ERP components related to audiovisual integration were found: first, auditory stimuli from the front location produced an ERP reaction over the right temporal area and right occipital area at approximately 160-200 milliseconds; second, auditory stimuli from the back produced a reaction over the parietal and occipital areas at approximately 360-400 milliseconds. Our results confirmed that audiovisual integration was also elicited, even though auditory stimuli were presented behind the participant, but no integration occurred when auditory stimuli were presented in the right or left spaces, suggesting that the human brain might be particularly sensitive to information received from behind than both sides.

  2. Implicit attitudes toward eating stimuli differentiate eating disorder and non-eating disorder groups and predict eating disorder behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, April R; Forrest, Lauren N; Velkoff, Elizabeth A; Ribeiro, Jessica D; Franklin, Joseph

    2018-04-01

    The current study tested whether people with and without eating disorders (EDs) varied in their implicit attitudes toward ED-relevant stimuli. Additionally, the study tested whether implicit evaluations of ED-relevant stimuli predicted ED symptoms and behaviors over a 4-week interval. Participants were people without EDs (N = 85) and people seeking treatment for EDs (N = 92). All participants completed self-report questionnaires and a version of the affect misattribution procedure (AMP) at baseline. The AMP indexed implicit evaluations of average body stimuli, eating stimuli, and ED-symptom stimuli. Participants with EDs completed weekly follow-up measures of ED symptoms and behaviors for 4 weeks. Contrary to predictions, the anorexia nervosa (AN) group did not differ from the no ED group on implicit attitudes toward ED-symptom stimuli, and the bulimia nervosa (BN) group had less positive implicit attitudes toward ED-symptom stimuli relative to the no ED group. In line with predictions, people with AN and BN had more negative implicit attitudes toward average body and eating stimuli relative to the no ED group. In addition, among the ED group more negative implicit attitudes toward eating stimuli predicted ED symptoms and behaviors 4 weeks later, over and above baseline ED symptoms and behaviors. Taken together, implicit evaluations of eating stimuli differentiated people with AN and BN from people without EDs and longitudinally predicted ED symptoms and behaviors. Interventions that increase implicit liking of eating-related stimuli may reduce ED behaviors. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Response Function of the Crayfish Caudal Photoreceptor to Hydrodynamic Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breite, Sally; Bahar, Sonya; Neiman, Alexander; Moss, Frank

    2002-03-01

    In its abdominal 6th ganglion the crayfish houses 2 light-sensitive neurons (caudal photoreceptors, or CPRs). It is known that these neurons work in tandem with a mechanosensory system of tiny hairs spread across the tailfan, which make synaptic contact with the photoreceptors. A stochastic resonance effect has been shown in this system in which light enhances the transduction of a weak, periodic mechanosensory (hydrodynamic) stimulus. It is not known, however, whether an optimal response from the CPR is induced by a single sine wave cycle or some other waveform. We have experimentally investigated this favorable waveform by driving a tailfan preparation with mechanical 10 Hz correlated Ornstein-Uhlenbeck noise and calculating the response function from the spike-triggered average of the applied noise waveform. We will discuss differences in the shape of the optimal waveform under dark and light conditions, as well as what seems to be a noticeable difference in the magnitude of the animals' response to a noisy stimulus in comparison with a periodic stimulus.

  4. Fixation not required: characterizing oculomotor attention capture for looming stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Joanna E; Neider, Mark B

    2015-10-01

    A stimulus moving toward us, such as a ball being thrown in our direction or a vehicle braking suddenly in front of ours, often represents a stimulus that requires a rapid response. Using a visual search task in which target and distractor items were systematically associated with a looming object, we explored whether this sort of looming motion captures attention, the nature of such capture using eye movement measures (overt/covert), and the extent to which such capture effects are more closely tied to motion onset or the motion itself. We replicated previous findings indicating that looming motion induces response time benefits and costs during visual search Lin, Franconeri, & Enns(Psychological Science 19(7): 686-693, 2008). These differences in response times were independent of fixation, indicating that these capture effects did not necessitate overt attentional shifts to a looming object for search benefits or costs to occur. Interestingly, we found no differences in capture benefits and costs associated with differences in looming motion type. Combined, our results suggest that capture effects associated with looming motion are more likely subserved by covert attentional mechanisms rather than overt mechanisms, and attention capture for looming motion is likely related to motion itself rather than the onset of motion.

  5. Reproducibility and discriminability of brain patterns of semantic categories enhanced by congruent audiovisual stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuanqing Li

    Full Text Available One of the central questions in cognitive neuroscience is the precise neural representation, or brain pattern, associated with a semantic category. In this study, we explored the influence of audiovisual stimuli on the brain patterns of concepts or semantic categories through a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI experiment. We used a pattern search method to extract brain patterns corresponding to two semantic categories: "old people" and "young people." These brain patterns were elicited by semantically congruent audiovisual, semantically incongruent audiovisual, unimodal visual, and unimodal auditory stimuli belonging to the two semantic categories. We calculated the reproducibility index, which measures the similarity of the patterns within the same category. We also decoded the semantic categories from these brain patterns. The decoding accuracy reflects the discriminability of the brain patterns between two categories. The results showed that both the reproducibility index of brain patterns and the decoding accuracy were significantly higher for semantically congruent audiovisual stimuli than for unimodal visual and unimodal auditory stimuli, while the semantically incongruent stimuli did not elicit brain patterns with significantly higher reproducibility index or decoding accuracy. Thus, the semantically congruent audiovisual stimuli enhanced the within-class reproducibility of brain patterns and the between-class discriminability of brain patterns, and facilitate neural representations of semantic categories or concepts. Furthermore, we analyzed the brain activity in superior temporal sulcus and middle temporal gyrus (STS/MTG. The strength of the fMRI signal and the reproducibility index were enhanced by the semantically congruent audiovisual stimuli. Our results support the use of the reproducibility index as a potential tool to supplement the fMRI signal amplitude for evaluating multimodal integration.

  6. [WMN: a negative ERPs component related to working memory during non-target visual stimuli processing].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Lun; Wei, Jin-he

    2003-10-01

    To study non-target stimuli processing in the brain. Features of the event-related potentials (ERPs) from non-target stimuli during selective response task (SR) was compared with that during visual selective discrimination (DR) task in 26 normal subjects. The stimuli consisted of two color LED flashes (red and green) appeared randomly in left (LVF) or right (RVF) visual field with same probability. ERPs were derived at 9 electrode sites on the scalp under 2 task conditions: a) SR, making switch response to the target (NT) stimuli from LVF or RVF in one direction and making no response to the non-target (NT) ones; b) DR, making switching response to T stimuli differentially, i.e., to the left for T from LVF and to the right for T from RVF. 1) the non-target stimuli in DR conditions, compared with that in SR condition, elicited smaller P2 and P3 components and larger N2 component at the frontal brain areas; 2) a significant negative component, named as WMN (working memory negativity), appeared in the non-target ERPs during DR in the period of 100 to 700 ms post stimulation which was predominant at the frontal brain areas. According to the major difference between brain activities for non-target stimuli during SR and DR, the predominant appearance of WMN at the frontal brain areas demonstrated that the non-target stimulus processing was an active process and was related to working memory, i.e., the temporary elimination and the retrieval of the response mode which was stored in working memory.

  7. An online brain-computer interface based on shifting attention to concurrent streams of auditory stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, N. J.; Schölkopf, B.

    2012-04-01

    We report on the development and online testing of an electroencephalogram-based brain-computer interface (BCI) that aims to be usable by completely paralysed users—for whom visual or motor-system-based BCIs may not be suitable, and among whom reports of successful BCI use have so far been very rare. The current approach exploits covert shifts of attention to auditory stimuli in a dichotic-listening stimulus design. To compare the efficacy of event-related potentials (ERPs) and steady-state auditory evoked potentials (SSAEPs), the stimuli were designed such that they elicited both ERPs and SSAEPs simultaneously. Trial-by-trial feedback was provided online, based on subjects' modulation of N1 and P3 ERP components measured during single 5 s stimulation intervals. All 13 healthy subjects were able to use the BCI, with performance in a binary left/right choice task ranging from 75% to 96% correct across subjects (mean 85%). BCI classification was based on the contrast between stimuli in the attended stream and stimuli in the unattended stream, making use of every stimulus, rather than contrasting frequent standard and rare ‘oddball’ stimuli. SSAEPs were assessed offline: for all subjects, spectral components at the two exactly known modulation frequencies allowed discrimination of pre-stimulus from stimulus intervals, and of left-only stimuli from right-only stimuli when one side of the dichotic stimulus pair was muted. However, attention modulation of SSAEPs was not sufficient for single-trial BCI communication, even when the subject's attention was clearly focused well enough to allow classification of the same trials via ERPs. ERPs clearly provided a superior basis for BCI. The ERP results are a promising step towards the development of a simple-to-use, reliable yes/no communication system for users in the most severely paralysed states, as well as potential attention-monitoring and -training applications outside the context of assistive technology.

  8. Effects of hypnagogic imagery on the event-related potential to external tone stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michida, Nanae; Hayashi, Mitsuo; Hori, Tadao

    2005-07-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of hypnagogic imagery on the information processes of external tone stimuli during the sleep onset period with the use of event-related potentials. Event-related potentials to tone stimuli were compared between conditions with and without the experience of hypnagogic imagery. To control the arousal level when the tone was presented, a certain criterion named the electroencephalogram stage was used. Stimuli were presented at electroencephalogram stage 4, which was characterized by the appearance of a vertex sharp wave. Data were collected in the sleep laboratory at Hiroshima University. Eleven healthy university and graduate school students participated in the study. N/A. Experiments were performed at night. Reaction times to tone stimuli were measured, and only trials with shorter reaction times than 5000 milliseconds were analyzed. Electroencephalograms were recorded from Fz, Cz, Pz, Oz, T5 and T6. There were no differences in reaction times and electroencephalogram spectra between the conditions of with and without hypnagogic imagery. These results indicated that the arousal levels were not different between the 2 conditions. On the other hand, the N550 amplitude of the event-related potentials in the imagery condition was lower than in the no-imagery condition. The decrease in the N550 amplitude in the imagery condition showed that experiences of hypnagogic imagery exert some influence on the information processes of external tone stimuli. It is possible that the processing of hypnagogic imagery interferes with the processing of external stimuli, lowering the sensitivity to external stimuli.

  9. Investigating the Predictive Value of Functional MRI to Appetitive and Aversive Stimuli: A Pattern Classification Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ciara McCabe

    Full Text Available Dysfunctional neural responses to appetitive and aversive stimuli have been investigated as possible biomarkers for psychiatric disorders. However it is not clear to what degree these are separate processes across the brain or in fact overlapping systems. To help clarify this issue we used Gaussian process classifier (GPC analysis to examine appetitive and aversive processing in the brain.25 healthy controls underwent functional MRI whilst seeing pictures and receiving tastes of pleasant and unpleasant food. We applied GPCs to discriminate between the appetitive and aversive sights and tastes using functional activity patterns.The diagnostic accuracy of the GPC for the accuracy to discriminate appetitive taste from neutral condition was 86.5% (specificity = 81%, sensitivity = 92%, p = 0.001. If a participant experienced neutral taste stimuli the probability of correct classification was 92. The accuracy to discriminate aversive from neutral taste stimuli was 82.5% (specificity = 73%, sensitivity = 92%, p = 0.001 and appetitive from aversive taste stimuli was 73% (specificity = 77%, sensitivity = 69%, p = 0.001. In the sight modality, the accuracy to discriminate appetitive from neutral condition was 88.5% (specificity = 85%, sensitivity = 92%, p = 0.001, to discriminate aversive from neutral sight stimuli was 92% (specificity = 92%, sensitivity = 92%, p = 0.001, and to discriminate aversive from appetitive sight stimuli was 63.5% (specificity = 73%, sensitivity = 54%, p = 0.009.Our results demonstrate the predictive value of neurofunctional data in discriminating emotional and neutral networks of activity in the healthy human brain. It would be of interest to use pattern recognition techniques and fMRI to examine network dysfunction in the processing of appetitive, aversive and neutral stimuli in psychiatric disorders. Especially where problems with reward and punishment processing have been implicated in the pathophysiology of the disorder.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate A. Woodcock

    2013-06-01

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

  11. Learning efficient visual search for stimuli containing diagnostic spatial configurations and color-shape conjunctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reavis, Eric A; Frank, Sebastian M; Tse, Peter U

    2018-04-12

    Visual search is often slow and difficult for complex stimuli such as feature conjunctions. Search efficiency, however, can improve with training. Search for stimuli that can be identified by the spatial configuration of two elements (e.g., the relative position of two colored shapes) improves dramatically within a few hundred trials of practice. Several recent imaging studies have identified neural correlates of this learning, but it remains unclear what stimulus properties participants learn to use to search efficiently. Influential models, such as reverse hierarchy theory, propose two major possibilities: learning to use information contained in low-level image statistics (e.g., single features at particular retinotopic locations) or in high-level characteristics (e.g., feature conjunctions) of the task-relevant stimuli. In a series of experiments, we tested these two hypotheses, which make different predictions about the effect of various stimulus manipulations after training. We find relatively small effects of manipulating low-level properties of the stimuli (e.g., changing their retinotopic location) and some conjunctive properties (e.g., color-position), whereas the effects of manipulating other conjunctive properties (e.g., color-shape) are larger. Overall, the findings suggest conjunction learning involving such stimuli might be an emergent phenomenon that reflects multiple different learning processes, each of which capitalizes on different types of information contained in the stimuli. We also show that both targets and distractors are learned, and that reversing learned target and distractor identities impairs performance. This suggests that participants do not merely learn to discriminate target and distractor stimuli, they also learn stimulus identity mappings that contribute to performance improvements.

  12. Functional Alterations of Postcentral Gyrus Modulated by Angry Facial Expressions during Intraoral Tactile Stimuli in Patients with Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshino, Atsuo; Okamoto, Yasumasa; Doi, Mitsuru; Okada, Go; Takamura, Masahiro; Ichikawa, Naho; Yamawaki, Shigeto

    2017-01-01

    Previous findings suggest that negative emotions could influence abnormal sensory perception in burning mouth syndrome (BMS). However, few studies have investigated the underlying neural mechanisms associated with BMS. We examined activation of brain regions in response to intraoral tactile stimuli when modulated by angry facial expressions. We performed functional magnetic resonance imaging on a group of 27 BMS patients and 21 age-matched healthy controls. Tactile stimuli were presented during different emotional contexts, which were induced via the continuous presentation of angry or neutral pictures of human faces. BMS patients exhibited higher tactile ratings and greater activation in the postcentral gyrus during the presentation of tactile stimuli involving angry faces relative to controls. Significant positive correlations between changes in brain activation elicited by angry facial images in the postcentral gyrus and changes in tactile rating scores by angry facial images were found for both groups. For BMS patients, there was a significant positive correlation between changes in tactile-related activation of the postcentral gyrus elicited by angry facial expressions and pain intensity in daily life. Findings suggest that neural responses in the postcentral gyrus are more strongly affected by angry facial expressions in BMS patients, which may reflect one possible mechanism underlying impaired somatosensory system function in this disorder. PMID:29163243

  13. Functional Alterations of Postcentral Gyrus Modulated by Angry Facial Expressions during Intraoral Tactile Stimuli in Patients with Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

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    Atsuo Yoshino

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Previous findings suggest that negative emotions could influence abnormal sensory perception in burning mouth syndrome (BMS. However, few studies have investigated the underlying neural mechanisms associated with BMS. We examined activation of brain regions in response to intraoral tactile stimuli when modulated by angry facial expressions. We performed functional magnetic resonance imaging on a group of 27 BMS patients and 21 age-matched healthy controls. Tactile stimuli were presented during different emotional contexts, which were induced via the continuous presentation of angry or neutral pictures of human faces. BMS patients exhibited higher tactile ratings and greater activation in the postcentral gyrus during the presentation of tactile stimuli involving angry faces relative to controls. Significant positive correlations between changes in brain activation elicited by angry facial images in the postcentral gyrus and changes in tactile rating scores by angry facial images were found for both groups. For BMS patients, there was a significant positive correlation between changes in tactile-related activation of the postcentral gyrus elicited by angry facial expressions and pain intensity in daily life. Findings suggest that neural responses in the postcentral gyrus are more strongly affected by angry facial expressions in BMS patients, which may reflect one possible mechanism underlying impaired somatosensory system function in this disorder.

  14. Ketamine produces lasting disruptions in encoding of sensory stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Christina R; Ehrlichman, Richard S; Liang, Yuling; Trief, Danielle; Kanes, Stephen J; Karp, Jonathan; Siegel, Steven J

    2006-01-01

    The current study analyzed the acute, chronic, and lasting effects of ketamine administration in four inbred mouse strains (C3H/HeHsd, C57BL/6Hsd, FVB/Hsd, and DBA/2Hsd) to evaluate vulnerability to ketamine as a drug of abuse and as a model of schizophrenia. Serum half-life of ketamine was similar between all strains (approximately 13 min). Also, the ratio of brain-to-serum ketamine levels was 3:1. Examination of multiple phases of auditory processing using auditory-evoked potentials (AEPs) following acute ketamine (0, 5, and 20 mg/kg) treatment revealed C3H/HeHsd mice to be most vulnerable to ketamine-induced alterations in AEPs, whereas FVB/Hsd mice exhibited the least electrophysiological sensitivity to ketamine. Overall, the precortical P1-evoked potential component increased in amplitude and latency, whereas the cortically generated N1 and P2 components decreased in amplitude and latency following acute ketamine across all strains. Brain catecholamine analyses indicated that ketamine decreased hippocampus epinephrine levels in C3H/HeHsd but elevated hippocampus epinephrine levels in FVB/Hsd, suggesting one potential mechanism for AEP vulnerability to ketamine. Based on results of the acute study, the immediate and lasting effects of chronic low-dose ketamine on AEPs were examined among C3H/HeHsd (sensitive) and FVB/Hsd (insensitive) mice. We observed a decrement of the N1 amplitude that persisted at least 1 week after the last exposure to ketamine across both strains. This lasting deficit in information processing occurred in the absence of acute changes among the FVB/Hsd mice. Implications for both ketamine abuse and N-methyl-D-aspartate hypofunction models of schizophrenia are discussed.

  15. Controlling attention to nociceptive stimuli with working memory.

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    Valéry Legrain

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Because pain often signals the occurrence of potential tissue damage, a nociceptive stimulus has the capacity to involuntarily capture attention and take priority over other sensory inputs. Whether distraction by nociception actually occurs may depend upon the cognitive characteristics of the ongoing activities. The present study tested the role of working memory in controlling the attentional capture by nociception. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Participants performed visual discrimination and matching tasks in which visual targets were shortly preceded by a tactile distracter. The two tasks were chosen because of the different effects the involvement of working memory produces on performance, in order to dissociate the specific role of working memory in the control of attention from the effect of general resource demands. Occasionally (i.e. 17% of the trials, tactile distracters were replaced by a novel nociceptive stimulus in order to distract participants from the visual tasks. Indeed, in the control conditions (no working memory, reaction times to visual targets were increased when the target was preceded by a novel nociceptive distracter as compared to the target preceded by a frequent tactile distracter, suggesting attentional capture by the novel nociceptive stimulus. However, when the task required an active rehearsal of the visual target in working memory, the novel nociceptive stimulus no longer induced a lengthening of reaction times to visual targets, indicating a reduction of the distraction produced by the novel nociceptive stimulus. This effect was independent of the overall task demands. CONCLUSION AND SIGNIFICANCE: Loading working memory with pain-unrelated information may reduce the ability of nociceptive input to involuntarily capture attention, and shields cognitive processing from nociceptive distraction. An efficient control of attention over pain is best guaranteed by the ability to maintain active goal

  16. Limited transcriptional responses of Rickettsia rickettsii exposed to environmental stimuli.

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    Damon W Ellison

    Full Text Available Rickettsiae are strict obligate intracellular pathogens that alternate between arthropod and mammalian hosts in a zoonotic cycle. Typically, pathogenic bacteria that cycle between environmental sources and mammalian hosts adapt to the respective environments by coordinately regulating gene expression such that genes essential for survival and virulence are expressed only upon infection of mammals. Temperature is a common environmental signal for upregulation of virulence gene expression although other factors may also play a role. We examined the transcriptional responses of Rickettsia rickettsii, the agent of Rocky Mountain spotted fever, to a variety of environmental signals expected to be encountered during its life cycle. R. rickettsii exposed to differences in growth temperature (25 degrees C vs. 37 degrees C, iron limitation, and host cell species displayed nominal changes in gene expression under any of these conditions with only 0, 5, or 7 genes, respectively, changing more than 3-fold in expression levels. R. rickettsii is not totally devoid of ability to respond to temperature shifts as cold shock (37 degrees C vs. 4 degrees C induced a change greater than 3-fold in up to 56 genes. Rickettsiae continuously occupy a relatively stable environment which is the cytosol of eukaryotic cells. Because of their obligate intracellular character, rickettsiae are believed to be undergoing reductive evolution to a minimal genome. We propose that their relatively constant environmental niche has led to a minimal requirement for R. rickettsii to respond to environmental changes with a consequent deletion of non-essential transcriptional response regulators. A minimal number of predicted transcriptional regulators in the R. rickettsii genome is consistent with this hypothesis.

  17. Frontal brain activity and behavioral indicators of affective states are weakly affected by thermal stimuli in sheep living in different housing conditions

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    Sabine eVögeli

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Many stimuli evoke short-term emotional reactions. These reactions may play an important role in assessing how a subject perceives a stimulus. Additionally, long-term mood may modulate the emotional reactions but it is still unclear in what way. The question seems to be important in terms of animal welfare, as a negative mood may taint emotional reactions. In the present study with sheep, we investigated the effects of thermal stimuli on emotional reactions and the potential modulating effect of mood induced by manipulations of the housing conditions. We assume that unpredictable, stimulus-poor conditions lead to a negative and predictable, stimulus-rich conditions to a positive mood state. The thermal stimuli were applied to the upper breast during warm ambient temperatures: hot (as presumably negative, intermediate, and cold (as presumably positive. We recorded cortical activity by functional near-infrared spectroscopy, restlessness behavior (e.g. locomotor activity, aversive behaviors and ear postures as indicators of emotional reactions. The strongest hemodynamic reaction was found during a stimulus of intermediate valence independent of the animal’s housing conditions, whereas locomotor activity, ear movements and aversive behaviors were seen most in sheep from the unpredictable, stimulus-poor housing conditions, independent of stimulus valence. We conclude that, sheep perceived the thermal stimuli and differentiated between some of them. An adequate interpretation of the neuronal activity pattern remains difficult, though. The effects of housing conditions were small indicating that the induction of mood was only modestly efficacious. Therefore, a modulating effect of mood on the emotional reaction was not found.

  18. Behavioral determination of stimulus pair discrimination of auditory acoustic and electrical stimuli using a classical conditioning and heart-rate approach.

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    Morgan, Simeon J; Paolini, Antonio G

    2012-06-06

    Acute animal preparations have been used in research prospectively investigating electrode designs and stimulation techniques for integration into neural auditory prostheses, such as auditory brainstem implants and auditory midbrain implants. While acute experiments can give initial insight to the effectiveness of the implant, testing the chronically implanted and awake animals provides the advantage of examining the psychophysical properties of the sensations induced using implanted devices. Several techniques such as reward-based operant conditioning, conditioned avoidance, or classical fear conditioning have been used to provide behavioral confirmation of detection of a relevant stimulus attribute. Selection of a technique involves balancing aspects including time efficiency (often poor in reward-based approaches), the ability to test a plurality of stimulus attributes simultaneously (limited in conditioned avoidance), and measure reliability of repeated stimuli (a potential constraint when physiological measures are employed). Here, a classical fear conditioning behavioral method is presented which may be used to simultaneously test both detection of a stimulus, and discrimination between two stimuli. Heart-rate is used as a measure of fear response, which reduces or eliminates the requirement for time-consuming video coding for freeze behaviour or other such measures (although such measures could be included to provide convergent evidence). Animals were conditioned using these techniques in three 2-hour conditioning sessions, each providing 48 stimulus trials. Subsequent 48-trial testing sessions were then used to test for detection of each stimulus in presented pairs, and test discrimination between the member stimuli of each pair. This behavioral method is presented in the context of its utilisation in auditory prosthetic research. The implantation of electrocardiogram telemetry devices is shown. Subsequent implantation of brain electrodes into the Cochlear

  19. Bioinspired microneedle insertion for deep and precise skin penetration with low force: Why the application of mechanophysical stimuli should be considered.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jonghun; Park, Sungmin; Nam, Gyungmok; Choi, Young; Woo, Seungpyo; Yoon, Sang-Hee

    2018-02-01

    A mosquito is known to precisely and easily insert its proboscis to the human skin by pressing down a labium and vibrating a fascicle bundle. Its advanced skin-piercing mechanisms indicate that skin resistance to the insertion of needle-like objects can be changed by the application of mechanophysical stimuli. Here, we characterize the effect of the application of mechanophysical stimuli on skin resistance to microneedle insertion to find clues for inserting a microneedle in a deep and precise fashion with low force. Microneedles with a diameter of 60-140µm are inserted at a velocity of 0.1-2.0mm/s to full-thickness porcine skins while either uniaxial/equibiaxial stretch of 0-20% or mechanical vibration at a frequency of 1 to 1000Hz and an amplitude of 1-10µm is applied to the skins as static or dynamic mechanophysical stimulus, respectively. The values of force and depth at two events of skin puncture and maximum penetration are measured to explore changes in skin resistance induced by the application of external stimuli. The static mechanophysical stimulus applied to the skin mainly affects the precision of microneedle insertion; the application of dynamic mechanophysical stimulus controls the value and deviation of skin resistance to microneedle insertion. The application of mechanophysical stimuli, inspired from a mosquito, therefore allows a microneedle to be deeply and easily inserted to the skin in a controlled way. The findings will have broad impacts on microneedle-mediated applications and lead to an in-depth understanding of skin biomechanics. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Implicit and Explicit Associations with Erotic Stimuli in Women with and Without Sexual Problems.

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    van Lankveld, Jacques J D M; Bandell, Myrthe; Bastin-Hurek, Eva; van Beurden, Myra; Araz, Suzan

    2018-02-20

    Conceptual models of sexual functioning have suggested a major role for implicit cognitive processing in sexual functioning. The present study aimed to investigate implicit and explicit cognition in sexual functioning in women. Gynecological patients with (N = 38) and without self-reported sexual problems (N = 41) were compared. Participants performed two Single-Target Implicit Association Tests (ST-IAT), measuring the implicit association of visual erotic stimuli with attributes representing, respectively, valence and motivation. Participants also rated the erotic pictures that were shown in the ST-IATs on the dimensions of valence, attractiveness, and sexual excitement, to assess their explicit associations with these erotic stimuli. Participants completed the Female Sexual Functioning Index and the Female Sexual Distress Scale for continuous measures of sexual functioning, and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale to assess depressive symptoms. Compared to nonsymptomatic women, women with sexual problems were found to show more negative implicit associations of erotic stimuli with wanting (implicit sexual motivation). Across both groups, stronger implicit associations of erotic stimuli with wanting predicted higher level of sexual functioning. More positive explicit ratings of erotic stimuli predicted lower level of sexual distress across both groups.

  1. Auditory stimulus timing influences perceived duration of co-occurring visual stimuli

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    Vincenzo eRomei

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available There is increasing interest in multisensory influences upon sensory-specific judgements, such as when auditory stimuli affect visual perception. Here we studied whether the duration of an auditory event can objectively affect the perceived duration of a co-occurring visual event. On each trial, participants were presented with a pair of successive flashes and had to judge whether the first or second was longer. Two beeps were presented with the flashes. The order of short and long stimuli could be the same across audition and vision (audiovisual congruent or reversed, so that the longer flash was accompanied by the shorter beep and vice versa (audiovisual incongruent; or the two beeps could have the same duration as each other. Beeps and flashes could onset synchronously or asynchronously. In a further control experiment, the beep durations were much longer (tripled than the flashes. Results showed that visual duration-discrimination sensitivity (d' was significantly higher for congruent (and significantly lower for incongruent audiovisual synchronous combinations, relative to the visual only presentation. This effect was abolished when auditory and visual stimuli were presented asynchronously, or when sound durations tripled those of flashes. We conclude that the temporal properties of co-occurring auditory stimuli influence the perceived duration of visual stimuli and that this can reflect genuine changes in visual sensitivity rather than mere response bias.

  2. Narcissism dimensions differentially moderate selective attention to evaluative stimuli in incarcerated offenders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krusemark, Elizabeth A; Lee, Christopher; Newman, Joseph P

    2015-01-01

    Narcissistic personality disorder is associated with distinguishing traits including self-enhancement, arrogance, and intense reactivity to ego threat. Theoretical accounts of narcissism suggest these heterogeneous behaviors reflect a defensive motivational style that functions to both uphold and protect the self-concept. However, the notion that narcissism can be characterized by grandiose and vulnerable dimensions raises the possibility that these diverse behaviors represent distinct expressions of narcissistic defensiveness. The present study examined whether both dimensions exhibit a general defensive style marked by selective attention to evaluative stimuli or are differentially associated with selective attention to positive and negative information, respectively. Using a dot probe task consisting of valenced and neutral trait adjectives, we evaluated these hypotheses in a group of male offenders. Results indicated that vulnerable narcissism was associated with attention biases for both positive and negative stimuli, though the dimension was further distinguished by disengagement difficulties and a greater recognition memory bias in response to negative words. Conversely, grandiose narcissism was associated with increased accuracy when attending to positive stimuli and directing attention away from negative stimuli. Overall, these findings suggest narcissistic individuals share motivated selective attention in response to evaluative stimuli, while simultaneously highlighting important phenotypic differences between grandiose and vulnerable dimensions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  3. Attention bias towards personally relevant stimuli: the individual emotional Stroop task.

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    Wingenfeld, Katja; Bullig, Renate; Mensebach, Christoph; Hartje, Wolfgang; Driessen, Martin; Beblo, Thomas

    2006-12-01

    The emotional Stroop task is a widely used method for investigating attentional bias towards stimuli due to mood or affect. In general, standardized stimuli are used, which might not be appropriate when investigating individual contextual frameworks. It was investigated whether words chosen to be related to individuals' personal life events would produce more pronounced Stroop interference (as an indicator of attentional bias) than stimuli without any personal relevance. Twenty-six nonclinical subjects, 20 female and 6 male, participated in the study. Mean age was 36.1 yr. (SD = 18.1). All were recruited by means of local advertising. Stimulus material consisted of four word types: personal words related to negative life events with and without current personal relevance, and negative and neutral words without any personal relevance. Words were presented in three blocks. Analysis of variance showed main effects for word type and blocks, with slower reactions in the personally relevant conditions than in the negative, or neutral conditions, and in response to the first blocks as opposed to the last. These findings indicate that regardless of the word valence, personally relevant stimuli evoke more pronounced Stroop interference than do stimuli without personal relevance.

  4. Ideological reactivity: Political conservatism and brain responsivity to emotional and neutral stimuli.

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    Tritt, Shona M; Peterson, Jordan B; Page-Gould, Elizabeth; Inzlicht, Michael

    2016-12-01

    Conservatives are often thought to have a negativity bias-responding more intensely to negative than positive information. Yet, recent research has found that greater endorsement of conservative beliefs follows from both positive and negative emotion inductions. This suggests that the role of affect in political thought may not be restricted to negative valence, and more attention should be given to how conservatives and liberals respond to a wider range of stimulation. In this vein, we examined neural responses to a full range of affective stimuli, allowing us to examine how self-reported ideology moderated these responses. Specifically, we explored the relationship between political orientation and 2 event-related potentials (1 late and 1 early) previously shown to covary with the subjective motivational salience of stimuli-in response to photographs with standardized ratings of arousal and valence. At late time points, conservatives exhibited sustained heightened reactivity, compared with liberals, specifically in response to relatively unarousing and neutral stimuli. At early time points, conservatives exhibited somewhat enhanced neural activity in response to all stimulus types compared with liberals. These results may suggest that conservatives experience a wide variety of stimuli in their environment with increased motivational salience, including positive, neutral, and low-arousal stimuli. No effects of valence were found in this investigation. Such findings have implications for the development and refinement of psychological conceptions of political orientation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  5. Bio-inspired fabrication of stimuli-responsive photonic crystals with hierarchical structures and their applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu, Tao; Peng, Wenhong; Zhu, Shenmin; Zhang, Di

    2016-01-01

    When the constitutive materials of photonic crystals (PCs) are stimuli-responsive, the resultant PCs exhibit optical properties that can be tuned by the stimuli. This can be exploited for promising applications in colour displays, biological and chemical sensors, inks and paints, and many optically active components. However, the preparation of the required photonic structures is the first issue to be solved. In the past two decades, approaches such as microfabrication and self-assembly have been developed to incorporate stimuli-responsive materials into existing periodic structures for the fabrication of PCs, either as the initial building blocks or as the surrounding matrix. Generally, the materials that respond to thermal, pH, chemical, optical, electrical, or magnetic stimuli are either soft or aggregate, which is why the manufacture of three-dimensional hierarchical photonic structures with responsive properties is a great challenge. Recently, inspired by biological PCs in nature which exhibit both flexible and responsive properties, researchers have developed various methods to synthesize metals and metal oxides with hierarchical structures by using a biological PC as the template. This review will focus on the recent developments in this field. In particular, PCs with biological hierarchical structures that can be tuned by external stimuli have recently been successfully fabricated. These findings offer innovative insights into the design of responsive PCs and should be of great importance for future applications of these materials. (topical review)

  6. The componential processing of fractions in adults and children: effects of stimuli variability and contextual interference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Li; Fang, Qiaochu; Gabriel, Florence C; Szücs, Dénes

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated that people have a strong tendency to compare fractions based on constituent numerators or denominators. This is called componential processing. This study explored whether componential processing was preferred in tasks involving high stimuli variability and high contextual interference, when fractions could be compared based either on the holistic values of fractions or on their denominators. Here, stimuli variability referred to the fact that fractions were not monotonous but diversiform. Contextual interference referred to the fact that the processing of fractions was interfered by other stimuli. To our ends, three tasks were used. In Task 1, participants compared a standard fraction 1/5 to unit fractions. This task was used as a low stimuli variability and low contextual interference task. In Task 2 stimuli variability was increased by mixing unit and non-unit fractions. In Task 3, high contextual interference was created by incorporating decimals into fractions. The RT results showed that the processing patterns of fractions were very similar for adults and children. In task 1 and task 3, only componential processing was utilzied. In contrast, both holistic processing and componential processing were utilized in task 2. These results suggest that, if individuals are presented with the opportunity to perform componential processing, both adults and children will tend to do so, even if they are faced with high variability of fractions or high contextual interference.

  7. Artificial Cochlear Sensory Epithelium with Functions of Outer Hair Cells Mimicked Using Feedback Electrical Stimuli

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    Tetsuro Tsuji

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available We report a novel vibration control technique of an artificial auditory cochlear epithelium that mimics the function of outer hair cells in the organ of Corti. The proposed piezoelectric and trapezoidal membrane not only has the acoustic/electric conversion and frequency selectivity of the previous device developed mainly by one of the authors and colleagues, but also has a function to control local vibration according to sound stimuli. Vibration control is achieved by applying local electrical stimuli to patterned electrodes on an epithelium made using micro-electro-mechanical system technology. By choosing appropriate phase differences between sound and electrical stimuli, it is shown that it is possible to both amplify and dampen membrane vibration, realizing better control of the response of the artificial cochlea. To be more specific, amplification and damping are achieved when the phase difference between the membrane vibration by sound stimuli and electrical stimuli is zero and π , respectively. We also demonstrate that the developed control system responds automatically to a change in sound frequency. The proposed technique can be applied to mimic the nonlinear response of the outer hair cells in a cochlea, and to realize a high-quality human auditory system.

  8. An fMRI investigation into the effect of preceding stimuli during visual oddball tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fajkus, Jiří; Mikl, Michal; Shaw, Daniel Joel; Brázdil, Milan

    2015-08-15

    This study investigates the modulatory effect of stimulus sequence on neural responses to novel stimuli. A group of 34 healthy volunteers underwent event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging while performing a three-stimulus visual oddball task, involving randomly presented frequent stimuli and two types of infrequent stimuli - targets and distractors. We developed a modified categorization of rare stimuli that incorporated the type of preceding rare stimulus, and analyzed the event-related functional data according to this sequence categorization; specifically, we explored hemodynamic response modulation associated with increasing rare-to-rare stimulus interval. For two consecutive targets, a modulation of brain function was evident throughout posterior midline and lateral temporal cortex, while responses to targets preceded by distractors were modulated in a widely distributed fronto-parietal system. As for distractors that follow targets, brain function was modulated throughout a set of posterior brain structures. For two successive distractors, however, no significant modulation was observed, which is consistent with previous studies and our primary hypothesis. The addition of the aforementioned technique extends the possibilities of conventional oddball task analysis, enabling researchers to explore the effects of the whole range of rare stimuli intervals. This methodology can be applied to study a wide range of associated cognitive mechanisms, such as decision making, expectancy and attention. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Affective and physiological correlates of the perception of unimodal and bimodal emotional stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosa, Pedro J; Oliveira, Jorge; Alghazzawi, Daniyal; Fardoun, Habib; Gamito, Pedro

    2017-08-01

    Despite the multisensory nature of perception, previous research on emotions has been focused on unimodal emotional cues with visual stimuli. To the best of our knowledge, there is no evidence on the extent to which incongruent emotional cues from visual and auditory sensory channels affect pupil size. To investigate the effects of audiovisual emotional information perception on the physiological and affective response, but also to determine the impact of mismatched cues in emotional perception on these physiological indexes. Pupil size, electrodermal activity and affective subjective responses were recorded while 30 participants were exposed to visual and auditory stimuli with varied emotional content in three different experimental conditions: pictures and sounds presented alone (unimodal), emotionally matched audio-visual stimuli (bimodal congruent) and emotionally mismatched audio-visual stimuli (bimodal incongruent). The data revealed no effect of emotional incongruence on physiological and affective responses. On the other hand, pupil size covaried with skin conductance response (SCR), but the subjective experience was partially dissociated from autonomic responses. Emotional stimuli are able to trigger physiological responses regardless of valence, sensory modality or level of emotional congruence.

  10. Gaze-independent ERP-BCIs: augmenting performance through location-congruent bimodal stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurlings, Marieke E.; Brouwer, Anne-Marie; Van Erp, Jan B. F.; Werkhoven, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Gaze-independent event-related potential (ERP) based brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) yield relatively low BCI performance and traditionally employ unimodal stimuli. Bimodal ERP-BCIs may increase BCI performance due to multisensory integration or summation in the brain. An additional advantage of bimodal BCIs may be that the user can choose which modality or modalities to attend to. We studied bimodal, visual-tactile, gaze-independent BCIs and investigated whether or not ERP components’ tAUCs and subsequent classification accuracies are increased for (1) bimodal vs. unimodal stimuli; (2) location-congruent vs. location-incongruent bimodal stimuli; and (3) attending to both modalities vs. to either one modality. We observed an enhanced bimodal (compared to unimodal) P300 tAUC, which appeared to be positively affected by location-congruency (p = 0.056) and resulted in higher classification accuracies. Attending either to one or to both modalities of the bimodal location-congruent stimuli resulted in differences between ERP components, but not in classification performance. We conclude that location-congruent bimodal stimuli improve ERP-BCIs, and offer the user the possibility to switch the attended modality without losing performance. PMID:25249947

  11. Emotion regulation during the encoding of emotional stimuli: Effects on subsequent memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leventon, Jacqueline S; Bauer, Patricia J

    2016-02-01

    In the adult literature, emotional arousal is regarded as a source of the enhancing effect of emotion on subsequent memory. Here, we used behavioral and electrophysiological methods to examine the role of emotional arousal on subsequent memory in school-age children. Furthermore, we implemented a reappraisal instruction to manipulate (down-regulate) emotional arousal at encoding to examine the relation between emotional arousal and subsequent memory. Participants (8-year-old girls) viewed emotional scenes as electrophysiological (EEG) data were recorded and participated in a memory task 1 to 5days later where EEG and behavioral responses were recorded; participants provided subjective ratings of the scenes after the memory task. The reappraisal instruction successfully reduced emotional arousal responses to negative stimuli but not positive stimuli. Similarly, recognition performance in both event-related potentials (ERPs) and behavior was impaired for reappraised negative stimuli but not positive stimuli. The findings indicate that ERPs are sensitive to the reappraisal of negative stimuli in children as young as 8years. Furthermore, the findings suggest an interaction of emotion and memory during the school years, implicating the explanatory role of emotional arousal at encoding on subsequent memory performance in female children as young as 8years. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. A delivery device for presentation of tactile stimuli during functional magnetic resonance imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dykes, Robert W; Miqueé, Aline; Xerri, Christian; Zennou-Azogui, Yoh'i; Rainville, Constant; Dumoulin, André; Marineau, Daniel

    2007-01-30

    We describe a novel stimulus delivery system designed to present tactile stimuli to a subject in the tunnel of a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system. Using energy from an air-driven piston to turn a wheel, the device advances a conveyor belt with a pre-determined sequence of stimuli that differ in their spatial features into the tunnel of the MRI. The positioning of one or several stimulus objects in a window near the subject's hand is controlled by a photoelectric device that detects periodic openings in the conveyor belt. Using this electric signal to position each presentation avoids cumulative positioning errors and provides a signal related to the progression of the experiment. We used a series of shapes that differed in their spatial features but the device could carry stimuli with a diversity of shapes and textures. This flexibility allows the experimenter to design a wide variety of psychophysical experiments in the haptic world and possibly to compare and contrast these stimuli with the cognitive treatment of similar stimuli delivered to the other senses. Appropriate experimental design allows separation of motor, sensory and memory storage phases of mental processes.

  13. Agnosia for mirror stimuli: a new case report with a small parietal lesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinaud, Olivier; Mirlink, Nicolas; Bioux, Sandrine; Bliaux, Evangéline; Lebas, Axel; Gerardin, Emmanuel; Hannequin, Didier

    2014-11-01

    Only seven cases of agnosia for mirror stimuli have been reported, always with an extensive lesion. We report a new case of an agnosia for mirror stimuli due to a circumscribed lesion. An extensive battery of neuropsychological tests and a new experimental procedure to assess visual object mirror and orientatio