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Neural processing of negative emotional stimuli and the influence of age, sex and and task-related characteristics

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Garcia-Garcia,  Isabel
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Kube,  Jana
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;
Integrated Research and Treatment Center Adiposity Diseases, University of Leipzig, Germany;

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Gaebler,  Michael
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;
Leipzig Research Center for Civilization Diseases (LIFE), University of Leipzig, Germany;
Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Humboldt University Berlin, Germany;

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Horstmann,  Annette
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;
Integrated Research and Treatment Center Adiposity Diseases, University of Leipzig, Germany;

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Villringer,  Arno
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;
Integrated Research and Treatment Center Adiposity Diseases, University of Leipzig, Germany;
Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Humboldt University Berlin, Germany;

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Neumann,  Jane
Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;
Integrated Research and Treatment Center Adiposity Diseases, University of Leipzig, Germany;

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Citation

Garcia-Garcia, I., Kube, J., Gaebler, M., Horstmann, A., Villringer, A., & Neumann, J. (2016). Neural processing of negative emotional stimuli and the influence of age, sex and and task-related characteristics. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 68, 773-793. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.04.020.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002A-6372-A
Abstract
Negative emotional stimuli are particularly salient events that receive privileged access to neurocognitive resources. At the neural level, the processing of negative stimuli relies on a set of sensory, limbic, and prefrontal areas. However, controversies exist on how demographic and task-related characteristics modulate this brain pattern. Here, we used activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analysis and replicator dynamics to investigate the processing of negative visual stimuli in healthy adults. Our findings endorse the central role of the amygdala. This result might reflect how this structure modulates perceptual and attentional mechanisms in response to emotional stimuli. Additionally, we characterize how the neural processing of negative visual stimuli is influenced by the demographic factors of age and sex as well as by task-related characteristics like stimulus type, emotion category, and task instruction, with the amygdala showing comparable engagement across different sexes, stimulus types, and task instructions. Our findings practically inform experimentation in the affective neurosciences but also suggest brain circuits for neurobiological investigations of affective symptomatology.