Intrinsic variability in the human response to pain is assembled from multiple, dynamic brain processes

Mayhew, S.D. and Hylands-White, N. and Porcaro, C. and Derbyshire, S.W.G. and Bagshaw, A.P. (2013) Intrinsic variability in the human response to pain is assembled from multiple, dynamic brain processes. NeuroImage, 75. pp. 68-78. ISSN 10538119 (ISSN)

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The stimulus-evoked response is the principle measure used to elucidate the timing and spatial location of human brain activity. Brain and behavioural responses to pain are influenced by multiple intrinsic and extrinsic factors and display considerable, natural trial-by-trial variability. However, because the neuronal sources of this variability are poorly understood the functional information it contains is under-exploited for understanding the relationship between brain function and behaviour. We recorded simultaneous EEG-fMRI during rest and noxious thermal stimulation to characterise the relationship between natural fluctuations in behavioural pain-ratings, the spatiotemporal dynamics of brain network responses and intrinsic connectivity. We demonstrate that fMRI response variability in the pain network is: dependent upon its resting-state functional connectivity; modulated by behaviour; and correlated with EEG evoked-potential amplitude. The pre-stimulus default-mode network (DMN) fMRI signal predicts the subsequent magnitude of pain ratings, evoked-potentials and pain network BOLD responses. Additionally, the power of the ongoing EEG alpha oscillation, an index of cortical excitability, modulates the DMN fMRI response to pain. The complex interaction between alpha-power, DMN activity and both the behavioural report of pain and the brain's response to pain demonstrates the neurobiological significance of trial-by-trial variability. Furthermore, we show that multiple, interconnected factors contribute to both the brain's response to stimulation and the psychophysiological emergence of the subjective experience of pain. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number:
5 July 2013Published
Uncontrolled Keywords: Alpha power, Default-mode network, EEG-fMRI, Functional connectivity, Pain, Single-trial, adult, alpha rhythm, amplitude modulation, article, BOLD signal, brain function, electroencephalogram, evoked cortical response, excitability, female, functional magnetic resonance imaging, human, male, neurobiology, nociceptive stimulation, pain, priority journal, rest, spatiotemporal analysis, thermal stimulation, Adult, Brain, Brain Mapping, Electroencephalography, Female, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Multimodal Imaging, Pain, Pain Threshold, Young Adult
Subjects: CAH04 - psychology > CAH04-01 - psychology > CAH04-01-01 - psychology (non-specific)
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > College of Psychology
Depositing User: Hussen Farooq
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2017 06:54
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2024 13:03

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