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NIH Research Festival 2005
2005 NIH Research Festival

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October 18 - October 21
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Plenary Session
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Symposia Session I - 7 concurrent symposia
  Tuesday, October 18, 2005
Natcher Auditorium
Cognition, Emotion, and the Prefrontal Cortex: Bridging the Gap between Humans and Nonhuman Primates 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Chaired by Husseini K. Manji, NIMH

Balcony B, Natcher Conference Center

This symposium will bring together investigators from four research groups, each of which have examined the role of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) in cognition and emotion. Dr. Murray will discuss the neural substrates of affective processing in rhesus monkeys. Her presentation will explore the conditions in which the orbital PFC and amygdala interact in mediating response selection, and the extent to which emotional responses and reward processing are mediated by the same neural substrates. The findings indicate that the orbital PFC guides response selection based on both reward contingency and emotional valuation. By contrast, the amygdala is necessary for response selection only when emotional valuation is involved. Dr. Blair will discuss the role of the amygdala and PFC in the expression of both reactive and instrumental aggression, with reference to the clinical disorder of psychopathy. Data derived from both neuropsychological testing of psychopathic individuals and fMRI studies in healthy humans will be presented. The pattern of findings suggests that early amygdala dysfunction interferes with fundamental learning processes that are necessary for socialization, leading to a syndrome of antisocial behavior. Dr. Leibenluft will present data implicating PFC in developmental psychopathology. In particular, she will present neuropsychological, structural and fMRI data implicating dysfunction in the ventral striatal-amygdala-PFC circuit in the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder (BD) in children. Data indicate that dysfunction in this circuit causes children with BD to have difficulty adapting to changes in emotional salience, to have deficits in social cognition, and to be unable to focus attention effectively in emotional contexts. Dr. Pine will review the nature of the relationships among attention, anxiety, and perturbed interactions between the amygdala and PFC, focusing on developmental aspects of these relationships. He will present data implicating abnormalities in two aspects of attention in clinically significant anxiety, both in children and adults. He will then use fMRI data to demonstrate that these associations reflect perturbed relationships between the PFC and amygdala that are likely to emerge during adolescent development.


Role of Macaque Orbital Prefrontal Cortex in Affective Processing: Integrating Sensory Signals to Guide Response Selection
Betsy Murray, NIMH

The Amygdala and Prefrontal Cortex in Psychopathy
James Blair, NIMH

Prefrontal-Striatal-Amygdala Dysfunction in Bipolar Disorder
Ellen Leibenluft, NIMH

Anxiety, Attention, and Prefrontal-Amygdala Interactions A Developmental Perspective
Danny Pine, NIMH

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