Nothing to fear? Neural systems supporting avoidance behavior in healthy youths

Description:

This article discusses neural systems supporting avoidance behavior in healthy youths. Presently our understanding of the neural systems supporting human avoidance is largely based on nonhuman research. Establishing the generality of nonhuman findings to healthy children is a needed first step towards advancing developmental affective neuroscience research on avoidance in childhood anxiety. Accordingly, this investigation examined brain activation patterns to threatening cues that prompted avoidance in healthy youths.

Creator(s):
Creation Date: August 15, 2010
Partner(s):
UNT College of Public Affairs and Community Service
Collection(s):
UNT Scholarly Works
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Past 30 days: 3
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Creator (Author):
Schlund, Michael W.

University of North Texas; University of Pittsburgh; Kennedy Krieger Institute; John Hopkins University

Creator (Author):
Siegle, Greg J.

University of Pittsburgh

Creator (Author):
Ladouceur, Cecile D.

University of Pittsburgh

Creator (Author):
Silk, Jennifer S.

University of Pittsburgh

Creator (Author):
Cataldo, Michael F.

Kennedy Krieger Institute; John Hopkins University

Creator (Author):
Forbes, Erika E.

University of Pittsburgh

Creator (Author):
Dahl, Ronald E.

University of Pittsburgh

Creator (Author):
Ryan, Neal D.

University of Pittsburgh

Publisher Info:
Publisher Name: Elsevier Science Ltd.
Place of Publication: [Amsterdam, Netherlands]
Date(s):
  • Creation: August 15, 2010
Description:

This article discusses neural systems supporting avoidance behavior in healthy youths. Presently our understanding of the neural systems supporting human avoidance is largely based on nonhuman research. Establishing the generality of nonhuman findings to healthy children is a needed first step towards advancing developmental affective neuroscience research on avoidance in childhood anxiety. Accordingly, this investigation examined brain activation patterns to threatening cues that prompted avoidance in healthy youths.

Degree:
Department: Behavior Analysis
Note:

Reprinted from Neuroimage, 52/2, Michael W. Schlund, Greg J. Siegle, Cecile D. Ladouceur, Jennifer S. Silk, Michael F. Cataldo, Erika E. Forbes, Ronald E. Dahl, Neal D. Ryan, Nothing to fear? Neural systems supporting avoidance behavior in healthy youths, pp. 710-719, 2010, with permission from Elsevier. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053811910006567

Note:

Abstract: Active avoidance involving controlling and modifying threatening situations characterizations many forms of clinical pathology, particularly childhood anxiety. Presently our understanding of the neural systems supporting human avoidance is largely based on nonhuman research. Establishing the generality of nonhuman findings to healthy children is a needed first step towards advancing developmental affective neuroscience research on avoidance in childhood anxiety. Accordingly, this investigation examined brain activation patterns to threatening cues that prompted avoidance in healthy youths. During functional magnetic resonance imaging, fifteen youths (ages 9-13) completed a task that alternatively required approach or avoidance behaviors. On each trial either a threatening 'Snake' cue or a 'Reward' cue advanced towards a bank containing earned points. Directional buttons enabled subjects to move cues away from (Avoidance) or towards the bank (Approach). Avoidance cues elicited activation in regions hypothesized to support avoidance in nonhumans (amygdala, insula, striatum and thalamus). Results also highlighted that avoidance response rates were positively correlated with amygdala activation and negatively correlated with insula and anterior cingulate activation. Moreover, increased amygdala activity was associated with decreased insula and anterior cingulate activity. Our results suggest nonhuman neurophysiological research findings on avoidance may generate to neural systems associated with avoidance in childhood. Perhaps most importantly, the amygdala/insula activation observed suggests threat related responses can be maintained even when aversive events are consistently avoided, which may account for the persistence of avoidance-coping in childhood anxiety. The present approach may offer developmental affective neuroscience a conceptual and methodological framework for investigating avoidance in childhood anxiety.

Physical Description:

24 p.

Language(s):
Subject(s):
Keyword(s): threats | fears | avoidance | anxiety | amygdala | insula | children
Source: Neuroimage, 2010, Amsterdam: Elsevier Science Ltd., pp. 710-719
Partner:
UNT College of Public Affairs and Community Service
Collection:
UNT Scholarly Works
Identifier:
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.04.244
  • ARK: ark:/67531/metadc77177
Resource Type: Article
Format: Text
Rights:
Access: Public
Citation:
Publication Title: Neuroimage
Volume: 52
Issue: 2
Page Start: 710
Page End: 719
Peer Reviewed: Yes