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Mouse models are useful for studying genes involved in behavior, but whether they are relevant to human behavior is unclear. Here, we identified parallel phenotypes in mice and humans resulting from a common single-nucleotide polymorphism in the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene, which is involved in anxiety-related behavior. An inbred genetic(More)
Active and passive avoidance behaviors involve either emitting or omitting a response to avoid potential harm. Both are key components in the etiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders, yet the neural circuitry that mediates avoidance is underexplored. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging greater hemodynamic activation of the nucleus accumbens was(More)
Recent studies have shown that medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) lesions impair performance on a number of rodent tests of attention. Although this evidence clearly suggests a role for the rat mPFC in attentional functions, it is unclear whether subcortical changes associated with mPFC lesions might also be relevant to the neuropsychological deficits(More)
Individuals with Asperger's syndrome (AS) often have difficulties with social interactions and conversations. We investigated if these difficulties could be attributable to a deficit in the ability to linguistically converge with an interlocutor, which is posited to be important for successful communication. To that end, participants completed two(More)
An increasing body of evidence suggests that the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) is engaged in both incentive reward processes and in adaptive responses to conditioned and unconditioned aversive stimuli. Yet, it has been argued that NAcc activation to aversive stimuli may be a consequence of the rewarding effects of their termination, i.e., relief. To address this(More)
The characterization of adolescence as a time of "storm and stress" remains an open debate. Intense and frequent negative affect during this period has been hypothesized to explain the increased rates of affective disorders, suicide, and accidental death during this time of life. Yet some teens emerge from adolescence with minimal turmoil. We provide a(More)
CONTEXT Recent theories have suggested that the inappropriate activation of limbic motivational systems in response to neutral stimuli may underlie the development of delusions in schizophrenia. OBJECTIVE To investigate the activation of the amygdala, midbrain, and ventral striatum during an aversive pavlovian conditioning task in patients with(More)
A role for the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and its dopamine (DA) innervation in fear and fear learning is supported by a large body of evidence, which has challenged the view that the NAcc is solely involved in mediating appetitive processes. Unfortunately, due to conflicting findings in the aversive conditioning literature the role of the NAcc in aversive(More)
A key question in the analysis of hippocampal memory relates to how attention modulates the encoding and long-term retrieval of spatial and nonspatial representations in this region. To address this question, we recorded from single cells over a period of 5 days in the CA1 region of the dorsal hippocampus while mice acquired one of two goal-oriented tasks.(More)
Nucleus accumbens (NAcc) core lesions were performed either before or after Pavlovian aversive conditioning. NAcc core lesions had no effect on discrete-cue or contextual conditioned freezing during acquisition. During retention testing, neither pre- nor posttraining lesions had any effect on conditioned freezing to the discrete cue. However, pretraining(More)