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Response and habituation of the human amygdala during visual processing of facial expression.

Neuron | Nov 7, 1996

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8938120

We measured amygdala activity in human volunteers during rapid visual presentations of fearful, happy, and neutral faces using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The first experiment involved a fixed order of conditions both within and across runs, while the second one used a fully counterbalanced order in addition to a low level baseline of simple visual stimuli. In both experiments, the amygdala was preferentially activated in response to fearful versus neutral faces. In the counterbalanced experiment, the amygdala also responded preferentially to happy versus neutral faces, suggesting a possible generalized response to emotionally valenced stimuli. Rapid habituation effects were prominent in both experiments. Thus, the human amygdala responds preferentially to emotionally valenced faces and rapidly habituates to them.

Pubmed ID: 8938120 RIS Download

Mesh terms: Adult | Amygdala | Brain Mapping | Cohort Studies | Emotions | Facial Expression | Habituation, Psychophysiologic | Happiness | Humans | Magnetic Resonance Imaging | Male | Visual Pathways

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Associated grants

  • Agency: NIDA NIH HHS, Id: DA00265
  • Agency: NIDA NIH HHS, Id: DA09467
  • Agency: NHLBI NIH HHS, Id: HL39810

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