Intrusive Memories of Distressing Information: An fMRI Study
AuthorBattaglini, E; Liddell, B; Das, P; Malhi, G; Felmingham, K; Bryant, RA
Source TitlePLoS One
PublisherPUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE
Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsBattaglini, E., Liddell, B., Das, P., Malhi, G., Felmingham, K. & Bryant, R. A. (2016). Intrusive Memories of Distressing Information: An fMRI Study. PLOS ONE, 11 (9), https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0140871.
Access StatusOpen Access
NHMRC Grant codeNHMRC/APP1073041
Although intrusive memories are characteristic of many psychological disorders, the neurobiological underpinning of these involuntary recollections are largely unknown. In this study we used functional magentic resonance imaging (fMRI) to identify the neural networks associated with encoding of negative stimuli that are subsequently experienced as intrusive memories. Healthy partipants (N = 42) viewed negative and neutral images during a visual/verbal processing task in an fMRI context. Two days later they were assessed on the Impact of Event Scale for occurrence of intrusive memories of the encoded images. A sub-group of participants who reported significant intrusions (n = 13) demonstrated stronger activation in the amygdala, bilateral ACC and parahippocampal gyrus during verbal encoding relative to a group who reported no intrusions (n = 13). Within-group analyses also revealed that the high intrusion group showed greater activity in the dorsomedial (dmPFC) and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), inferior frontal gyrus and occipital regions during negative verbal processing compared to neutral verbal processing. These results do not accord with models of intrusions that emphasise visual processing of information at encoding but are consistent with models that highlight the role of inhibitory and suppression processes in the formation of subsequent intrusive memories.
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