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Altered fusiform connectivity during processing of fearful faces in social anxiety disorder.

Frick A, Howner K, Fischer H, Kristiansson M, Furmark T - Transl Psychiatry (2013)

Bottom Line: SAD patients exhibited hyper-reactivity in the bilateral fusiform gyrus in response to fearful faces, as well as greater connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and amygdala, and decreased connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex.Within the SAD group, social anxiety severity correlated positively with amygdala reactivity to emotional faces, amygdala-fusiform connectivity and connectivity between the amygdala and superior temporal sulcus (STS).These findings point to a pivotal role for the fusiform gyrus in SAD neuropathology, and further suggest that altered amygdala-fusiform and amygdala-STS connectivity could underlie previous findings of aberrant socio-emotional information processing in this anxiety disorder.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

ABSTRACT
Social anxiety disorder (SAD) has been associated with hyper-reactivity in limbic brain regions like the amygdala, both during symptom provocation and emotional face processing tasks. In this functional magnetic resonance imaging study we sought to examine brain regions implicated in emotional face processing, and the connectivity between them, in patients with SAD (n=14) compared with healthy controls (n=12). We furthermore aimed to relate brain reactivity and connectivity to self-reported social anxiety symptom severity. SAD patients exhibited hyper-reactivity in the bilateral fusiform gyrus in response to fearful faces, as well as greater connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and amygdala, and decreased connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Within the SAD group, social anxiety severity correlated positively with amygdala reactivity to emotional faces, amygdala-fusiform connectivity and connectivity between the amygdala and superior temporal sulcus (STS). These findings point to a pivotal role for the fusiform gyrus in SAD neuropathology, and further suggest that altered amygdala-fusiform and amygdala-STS connectivity could underlie previous findings of aberrant socio-emotional information processing in this anxiety disorder.

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Hyper-reactivity in the fusiform gyrus during processing of fearful over neutral faces in patients with social anxiety disorder as compared with healthy controls (axial plane at z –20). The colorbar indicates t-values.
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fig1: Hyper-reactivity in the fusiform gyrus during processing of fearful over neutral faces in patients with social anxiety disorder as compared with healthy controls (axial plane at z –20). The colorbar indicates t-values.

Mentions: Greater reactivity to fearful vs neutral faces was noted in SAD compared with HC bilaterally in the fusiform gyrus (see Table 2 and Figure 1). Exploratory whole brain analyses revealed significantly greater reactivity in SAD compared with HC in the cerebellum, precentral gyrus and superior frontal gyrus (see Table 2).


Altered fusiform connectivity during processing of fearful faces in social anxiety disorder.

Frick A, Howner K, Fischer H, Kristiansson M, Furmark T - Transl Psychiatry (2013)

Hyper-reactivity in the fusiform gyrus during processing of fearful over neutral faces in patients with social anxiety disorder as compared with healthy controls (axial plane at z –20). The colorbar indicates t-values.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3818016&req=5

fig1: Hyper-reactivity in the fusiform gyrus during processing of fearful over neutral faces in patients with social anxiety disorder as compared with healthy controls (axial plane at z –20). The colorbar indicates t-values.
Mentions: Greater reactivity to fearful vs neutral faces was noted in SAD compared with HC bilaterally in the fusiform gyrus (see Table 2 and Figure 1). Exploratory whole brain analyses revealed significantly greater reactivity in SAD compared with HC in the cerebellum, precentral gyrus and superior frontal gyrus (see Table 2).

Bottom Line: SAD patients exhibited hyper-reactivity in the bilateral fusiform gyrus in response to fearful faces, as well as greater connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and amygdala, and decreased connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex.Within the SAD group, social anxiety severity correlated positively with amygdala reactivity to emotional faces, amygdala-fusiform connectivity and connectivity between the amygdala and superior temporal sulcus (STS).These findings point to a pivotal role for the fusiform gyrus in SAD neuropathology, and further suggest that altered amygdala-fusiform and amygdala-STS connectivity could underlie previous findings of aberrant socio-emotional information processing in this anxiety disorder.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

ABSTRACT
Social anxiety disorder (SAD) has been associated with hyper-reactivity in limbic brain regions like the amygdala, both during symptom provocation and emotional face processing tasks. In this functional magnetic resonance imaging study we sought to examine brain regions implicated in emotional face processing, and the connectivity between them, in patients with SAD (n=14) compared with healthy controls (n=12). We furthermore aimed to relate brain reactivity and connectivity to self-reported social anxiety symptom severity. SAD patients exhibited hyper-reactivity in the bilateral fusiform gyrus in response to fearful faces, as well as greater connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and amygdala, and decreased connectivity between the fusiform gyrus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Within the SAD group, social anxiety severity correlated positively with amygdala reactivity to emotional faces, amygdala-fusiform connectivity and connectivity between the amygdala and superior temporal sulcus (STS). These findings point to a pivotal role for the fusiform gyrus in SAD neuropathology, and further suggest that altered amygdala-fusiform and amygdala-STS connectivity could underlie previous findings of aberrant socio-emotional information processing in this anxiety disorder.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus