Prefrontal-posterior coupling while observing the suffering of other people, and the development of intrusive memories.
Bottom Line: The factors contributing to why some people develop intrusive memories and others do not are still poorly understood.Individuals showing greater decreases of functional coupling between prefrontal and posterior cortices (greater decreases of EEG beta coherences) reported more intrusive memories of the witnessed events.The findings illuminate brain mechanisms involved in the encoding of information in ways that make intrusive memories more likely.
Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Biological Psychology Unit, University of Graz, Graz, Austria.Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus
Mentions: The analysis revealed an association between Δcoh in the right hemisphere and the participants' scores on the IES-R intrusion scale, F(2,118) = 9.4, p < .001; β = −.23, p < .01. Independently from depressed mood, a stronger decrease of prefrontal-posterior coherence during watching other people suffer was associated with higher scores on the IES-R intrusion scale, indicating a higher incidence of film-related intrusive memories over the week. Depressed mood was also related to higher IES-R intrusion scores (β = .34, p < .001). Δcoh in the left hemisphere did not predict intrusive memories reported in the IES-R, F(2,118) = 6.4, p < .005; Δcoh: β = −.10, p = .25; depression: β = .31, p < .001. Semipartial correlations for Δcoh are shown in Table 1. Δcoh did not predict the frequency of intrusive memories reported in the diary (right hemisphere: F(2,118) = 0.7, p = .48; Δcoh: β = −.04, p = .70; left hemisphere: F(2,118) = 0.8, p = .42; Δcoh: β = −.06, p = .52).3 Figure 2 shows the scatter plot of the correlation between changes of prefrontal-posterior EEG coherence while viewing the distressing film (Δcoh, right hemisphere) and film-related intrusive memories over the week (IES-R intrusion scale).
Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Biological Psychology Unit, University of Graz, Graz, Austria.