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Modulation of emotional appraisal by false physiological feedback during fMRI.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2007 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 2, no 6, e546- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

James and Lange proposed that emotions are the perception of physiological reactions. Two-level theories of

emotion extend this model to suggest that cognitive interpretations of physiological changes shape self-reported emotions.

Correspondingly false physiological feedback of evoked or tonic bodily responses can alter emotional attributions. Moreover,

anxiety states are proposed to arise from detection of mismatch between actual and anticipated states of physiological

arousal. However, the neural underpinnings of these phenomena previously have not been examined. Methodology/

Principal Findings. We undertook a functional brain imaging (fMRI) experiment to investigate how both primary and secondorder

levels of physiological (viscerosensory) representation impact on the processing of external emotional cues. 12

participants were scanned while judging face stimuli during both exercise and non-exercise conditions in the context of true

and false auditory feedback of tonic heart rate. We observed that the perceived emotional intensity/salience of neutral faces

was enhanced by false feedback of increased heart rate. Regional changes in neural activity corresponding to this behavioural

interaction were observed within included right anterior insula, bilateral mid insula, and amygdala. In addition, right anterior

insula activity was enhanced during by asynchronous relative to synchronous cardiac feedback even with no change in

perceived or actual heart rate suggesting this region serves as a comparator to detect physiological mismatches. Finally, BOLD

activity within right anterior insula and amygdala predicted the corresponding changes in perceived intensity ratings at both

a group and an individual level. Conclusions/Significance. Our findings identify the neural substrates supporting

behavioural effects of false physiological feedback, and highlight mechanisms that underlie subjective anxiety states,

including the importance of the right anterior insula in guiding second-order ‘‘cognitive’’ representations of bodily arousal


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 2, no 6, e546- p.
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-19265ISI: 000207451700012PubMedID: 17579718OAI: diva2:185789
Available from: 2008-01-15 Created: 2008-01-15 Last updated: 2011-01-11Bibliographically approved

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ReferencesLink to record
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