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See detailInhibition in Action - Inhibitory Components in the Behavioral Activation System
Sütterlin, Stefan UL; Andersson, Stein; Vögele, Claus UL

in Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science (2011), 1(3), 160-166

Over the past two decades, the neurobiological substrates of the reinforcement theory have been discussed in terms of a behavioral activation system (BAS) and a behavioral inhibition system (BIS). While ... [more ▼]

Over the past two decades, the neurobiological substrates of the reinforcement theory have been discussed in terms of a behavioral activation system (BAS) and a behavioral inhibition system (BIS). While the BAS has been conceptualized as both an activating system and an approach-related system, the empirical evidence for either approach remains inconclusive. In the current study we hypothesize that the inclusion of self-regula-tory capacity contributes to a better understanding of the BAS. In a sample of 29 volunteers motor response inhibition elicited by a stop-signal task and heart rate variability (HRV) as a proxy of self-regulatory capacity were related to BAS scores (BIS/BAS scales [1]). Results show significant positive associations between inhibitory capacity and the sensitivity of the behavioral activation system, suggesting markers of self-regu-lation as components of the BAS. [less ▲]

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See detailNegation as a means for emotion regulation? Startle reflex modulation during processing of negated emotional words
Herbert, Cornelia; Deutsch, Roland; Sütterlin, Stefan UL et al

in Cognitive, Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience (2011)

This study investigated startle reflex modulation in 33 healthy student participants during the processing of negated emotional items. To build upon previous research, our particular interest was to find ... [more ▼]

This study investigated startle reflex modulation in 33 healthy student participants during the processing of negated emotional items. To build upon previous research, our particular interest was to find out whether processing of negated emotional items modulates emotional responding in line with the logical meaning of the negated expression, or instead leads to paradox emotional effects that point in the direction opposite the one logically implied by the negation. Startle reflex modulation was assessed during silent reading of pleasant and unpleasant nouns. The nouns were either paired with the possessive pronoun my or with the negation word no. The startle eyeblink amplitude was enhanced during processing of the unpleasant pronoun–noun phrases and attenuated during processing of the pleasant phrases. Negation attenuated the startle eyeblink for negated unpleasant nouns and enhanced it for negated pleasant nouns. In line with this finding, negation decreased arousal ratings for unpleasant nouns and reversed the valence ratings for pleasant nouns. Our results are the first to show an effect of negation on both peripheral physiological and subjective indices of affective responding, which suggests that negation may be an effective strategy for spontaneous down-regulation of emotional responses to unpleasant, but not to pleasant, stimuli. [less ▲]

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See detailResponse Inhibition and Memory Retrieval of Emotional Target Words: Evidence from an Emotional Stop-Signal Task
Herbert, Cornelia; Sütterlin, Stefan UL

in Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science (2011), 1(3), 153-159

Previous research suggests that emotional stimuli capture attention and guide behavior often automatically. The present study investigated the relationship between emotion-driven attention capture and ... [more ▼]

Previous research suggests that emotional stimuli capture attention and guide behavior often automatically. The present study investigated the relationship between emotion-driven attention capture and motor response inhibition to emotional words in the stop-signal task. By experimental variations of the onset of motor response inhibition across the time-course of emotional word processing, we show that processing of emotional information significantly interferes with motor response inhibition in an early time-window, previously related to automatic emotion-driven attention capture. Second, we found that stopping reduced memory recall for unpleasant words during a subsequent surprise free recall task supporting assumptions of a link between mechanisms of motor response inhibition and memory functions. Together, our results provide behavioral evidence for dual competition models of emotion and cognition. This study provides an important link between research focusing on different sub-processes of emotion processing (from perception to action and from action to memory). [less ▲]

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See detailFrames, decisions, and cardiac-autonomic control
Sütterlin, Stefan UL; Herbert, Cornelia; Schmitt, Michael et al

in Social Neuroscience (2011), 6(2), 169-177

The “framing effect” (FE) describes the phenomenon whereby human choices are susceptible to the way they are presented rather than objective information. The present study extends common decision-making ... [more ▼]

The “framing effect” (FE) describes the phenomenon whereby human choices are susceptible to the way they are presented rather than objective information. The present study extends common decision-making paradigms with frame variation by including inhibitory control, operationalized as vagally mediated heart rate variability (HRV) at rest and motor response inhibition during a stop-signal task (SST). We hypothesized that inhibitory control is inversely associated with susceptibility to framing effects. Forty adult volunteers performed a risky-choice framing task in which identical information about wins and losses was presented using loss or gain frames. As predicted, there was an inverse association between HRV and framing effects, accounting for 23% of the variance in framing effects. Inhibitory control as indexed by performance in the SST was not associated with framing effects. These results are discussed in terms of the role of inhibitory processes (as indicated by vagal activity) for decision-making processes. [less ▲]

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See detailInteroception and inhibitory capacity in panic disorder and somatoform disorders
Grosche, Christian; Sütterlin, Stefan UL; Koch, Stefan et al

in 13. Kongress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Verhaltensmedizin und Verhaltensmodifikation (2011)

Hintergrund: Nach Damasios Theorie der Somatischen Marker werden Entscheidungen in komplexen Situationen durch die Wahrnehmung physiologischer Vorgänge (Interozeption) sowie durch die individuelle ... [more ▼]

Hintergrund: Nach Damasios Theorie der Somatischen Marker werden Entscheidungen in komplexen Situationen durch die Wahrnehmung physiologischer Vorgänge (Interozeption) sowie durch die individuelle Fähigkeit zu dieser Wahrnehmung (Interozeptivität) beeinflusst. Im Sinne zielgerichteten Verhaltens müssen die auf diese Weise gewonnenen, emotional mediierten Informationen bei Bedarf reguliert werden, wofür präfrontal initiierte, inhibitorische Prozesse maßgeblich sind. Die hierfür notwendige Inhibitionskapazität kann durch die vagal mediierte und präfrontal modulierte Herzratenvariabilität (HRV) peripherphysiologisch quantifiziert werden. Die Interaktion interozeptiver und inhibitorischer Fähigkeiten bei Entscheidungen unter emotional ablenkenden Bedingungen ist im klinischen Kontext insbesondere bei Krankheitsbildern mit disinhibitorischen und körperwahrnehmungsbezogenen Symptomen relevant. Die vorliegende Studie untersuchte Entscheidungsprozesse unter emotionalen Einflüssen bei Patienten mit Panikstörung und Somatoformen Störungen. Methode: 17 Patienten mit Panikstörung und 20 Patienten mit Somatoformen Störungen wurden im stationären Setting einer psychosomatischen Klinik untersucht. Die Interozeptivität wurde mit einer Trackingaufgabe des Herzschlages bestimmt, zur HRV-Bestimmung ein EKG unter Ruhebedingung aufgezeichnet. Entscheidungsprozesse wurden mit Hilfe einer emotionalen Flanker Task und der Iowa Gambling Task untersucht. Ergebnisse: Bei Patienten mit Panikstörung zeigte sich eine negative Interaktion zwischen HRV und Interozeptivität, die darüber hinaus mit der Ablenkbarkeit durch emotionale Reize in der Flanker Task assoziiert war. Bei Patienten mit Somatoformen Störungen traten diese Zusammenhänge nicht auf. Patienten mit Panikstörung zeigten eine signifikant niedrigere HRV im Vergleich mit Patienten mit Somatoformen Störungen. Diskussion: Die Ergebnisse legen nahe, dass Interozeptivität und Inhibitionskapazität jeweils allein nicht ausreichend sind, um die untersuchten klinischen Störungen spezifisch zu charakterisieren. Eine negative Interaktion beider Maße allerdings scheint spezifisch mit der Panikstörung assoziiert zu sein und spricht für eine präzise, aber dysfunktionale interozeptive Wahrnehmung bei verminderter Regulationskapazität, was sich in der Beeinflussung der Aufmerksamkeitsausrichtung durch emotionale Prozesse manifestiert. [less ▲]

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See detailNeuropsychiatric Complications of Efavirenz Therapy: Suggestions for a New Research Paradigm
Sütterlin, Stefan UL; Vögele, Claus UL; Gauggel, Siegfried

in Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences (The) (2010), 22

This review gives an up-to-date account of the current state of research on neuropsychiatric complications associated with efavirenz therapy and critiques the methods used in previous studies. The authors ... [more ▼]

This review gives an up-to-date account of the current state of research on neuropsychiatric complications associated with efavirenz therapy and critiques the methods used in previous studies. The authors suggest an extension of current research strategies using psychophysiological concepts and including behavioral regulation models. From a practical perspective, these may contribute to better screening methods for the identification of those at risk for neuropsychiatric complications and the improvement of neuropsychiatric monitoring during efavirenz treatment. From a theoretical viewpoint, the suggested research paradigms may help to move beyond the current state of descriptive approaches and thus improve our limited understanding of underlying mechanisms. [less ▲]

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