Dynamic modulation of amygdala-hippocampal connectivity by emotional arousal
SourceThe Journal of Neuroscience, 34, 42, (2014), pp. 13935-13947
Article / Letter to editor
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The Journal of Neuroscience
SubjectNeurophysiology; Radboudumc 13: Stress-related disorders DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience
Positive and negative emotional events are better remembered than neutral events. Studies in animals suggest that this phenomenon depends on the influence of the amygdala upon the hippocampus. In humans, however, it is largely unknown how these two brain structures functionally interact and whether these interactions are similar between positive and negative information. Using dynamic causal modeling of fMRI data in 586 healthy subjects, we show that the strength of the connection from the amygdala to the hippocampus was rapidly and robustly increased during the encoding of both positive and negative pictures in relation to neutral pictures. We also observed an increase in connection strength from the hippocampus to the amygdala, albeit at a smaller scale. These findings indicate that, during encoding, emotionally arousing information leads to a robust increase in effective connectivity from the amygdala to the hippocampus, regardless of its valence.
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