The cerebellum is involved in processing of predictions and prediction errors in a fear conditioning paradigm

Description: Prediction errors are thought to drive associative fear learning. Surprisingly little is known about the possible contribution of the cerebellum. To address this question, healthy participants underwent a differential fear conditioning paradigm during 7T magnetic resonance imaging. In the analysis, we were interested in cerebellar activations related to i) the presentation, ii) the prediction, and iii) the omission of the aversive electrical stimulation (that is, the US). The focus of the data analysis was on cerebellar activations (using the SUIT atlas and SUIT toolbox for SPM). Activation clusters are reported which are significant after application of threshold-free cluster-enhancement (TFCE) at p<0.05 familywise error (FWE) corrected level in all cases but conjunction analysis. Conjunction analysis results are reported at the level of p<0.05 FWE without TFCE. A total of 22 participants (eight males, 14 females, mean age: 26.9 (SD = 4.3) years, range: 19–32 years) were included in the data analysis. All MR images were acquired with a 7 Tesla MRI scanner (MAGNETOM 7T, Siemens Healthcare GmbH, Erlangen, Germany) equipped with a one-channel transmit/32 channel receive RF head coil (Nova Medical, Wilmington, MA). Whole brain functional fMRI acquisition was performed using a fat-saturated, two-dimensional simultaneous multi slice echo planar image (SMS-EPI) sequence with an isotropic voxel size of 1.7 mm, in three consecutive episodes for habituation (90 volumes), acquisition and extinction (320 volumes each). Data was processed using SPM 12 for MATLAB software (Release 2017a) on MacOS 10.12.6. Please refere to the corresponding paper for additional details and a discussion of the results.

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Add DateApril 3, 2019, 4:49 p.m.
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Related article DOI10.7554/eLife.46831
Related article authorsThomas Michael Ernst, Anna Evelina Brol, Marcel Gratz, Christoph Ritter, Ulrike Bingel, Marc Schlamann, Stefan Maderwald, Harald H Quick, Christian Josef Merz and Dagmar Timmann
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