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NeuroImage:FMRI技术揭示人们可以更好地训练自己的大脑

来源:新华网 2011-04-12 18:21

加拿大科学家一项新研究发现,通过观看功能磁共振成像(FMRI)反馈的实时大脑活动信息,人们可以更好地训练自己的大脑。

FMRI是研究脑功能的一种非常有效的非介入技术。使用这种技术,人们可以对大脑活动区域进行准确、可靠的定位。

在加拿大不列颠哥伦比亚大学的一项研究中,科学家向研究对象布置对大脑要求完全不同的任务,并允许他们观看自己执行这些任务时的大脑活动图像。然后,研究对象可以根据看到的大脑活动情况,主观上调控自己的思维。结果发现,根据大脑活动图像调控思维的效果明显,研究对象完成科学家布置的脑力任务的能力得到提高。

科学家把有关研究成果发表在4月号的国际著名科学杂志《神经影像学》上。

论文作者之一、加拿大不列颠哥伦比亚大学教授卡利娜·克里斯托弗说,运动员在教练的指导下训练能够受益。与此类似,大脑的实时反馈图像能够帮助人们更加注意自己的思维内容和方式。“这项发现说明,当知道自己大脑相应区域的活动时,我们控制思维的能力会得到提高。”

加拿大科学家认为,这项研究给治疗抑郁症、焦虑症和强迫症带来了新思路。这些患者的头脑中常常产生负面情绪,但他们往往并不自知。使用FMRI配合认知行为疗法,让这些患者意识到自己的负面情绪,应该可以帮助他们缓解病情。(生物谷Bioon.com)

生物谷推荐原文出处:

NeuroImage  doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.12.016

Improved modulation of rostrolateral prefrontal cortex using real-time fMRI training and meta-cognitive awareness

R. Graeme McCaiga, Matt Dixona, Kamyar Keramatianb, Irene Liua and Kalina Christoffa, b,

Abstract

Recent real-time fMRI (rt-fMRI) training studies have demonstrated that subjects can achieve improved control over localized brain regions by using real-time feedback about the level of fMRI signal in these regions. It has remained unknown, however, whether subjects can gain control over anterior prefrontal cortex (PFC) regions that support some of the most complex forms of human thought. In this study, we used rt-fMRI training to examine whether subjects can learn to regulate the rostrolateral prefrontal cortex (RLPFC), or the lateral part of the anterior PFC, by using a meta-cognitive awareness strategy. We show that individuals can achieve improved regulation over the level of fMRI signal in their RLPFC by turning attention towards or away from their own thoughts. The ability to achieve improved modulation was contingent on observing veridical real-time feedback about the level of RLPFC activity during training; a sham-feedback control group demonstrated no improvement in modulation ability and neither did control subjects who received no rt-fMRI feedback but underwent otherwise identical training. Prior to training, meta-cognitive awareness was associated with recruitment of anterior PFC subregions, including both RLPFC and medial PFC, as well as a number of other midline and posterior cortical regions. Following training, however, regulation improvement was specific to RLPFC and was not observed in other frontal, midline, or parietal cortical regions. These results demonstrate the feasibility of acquiring control over high-level prefrontal regions through rt-fMRI training and offer a novel view into the correspondence between observable neuroscientific measures and highly subjective mental states.

Research Highlights

Used real-time fMRI to assess the possibility of improving control over activation levels in RLPFC.

Individuals learned to regulate RLPFC activation and real-time fMRI feedback is necessary.

Subjects learned to regulate RLPFC activation using a meta-cognitive awareness strategy.

Metacognitive awareness in the absence of rt-feedback activated medial and lateral BA 10.

Improved regulation ability was not observed in any frontal lobe region outside of RLPFC.

Keywords: Anterior prefrontal cortex; Meta-cognitive awareness; Thinking; Self-regulation; Introspection; Executive functions

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