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Amygdaloid theta-band power increases during conflict processing in humans

Tang, Austin M. and Chen, Kuang-Hsuan and Gogia, Angad S. and Del Campo-Vera, Roberto Martin and Sebastian, Rinu and Gilbert, Zachary D. and Lee, Yelim and Nune, George and Liu, Charles Y. and Kellis, Spencer and Lee, Brian (2021) Amygdaloid theta-band power increases during conflict processing in humans. Journal of Clinical Neuroscience, 91 . pp. 183-192. ISSN 0967-5868. doi:10.1016/j.jocn.2021.07.001.

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The amygdala is a medial temporal lobe structure known to be involved in processing emotional conflict. However, its role in processing non-emotional conflict is not well understood. Previous studies have utilized the Stroop Task to examine brain modulation of humans under the color-word conflict scenario, which is non-emotional conflict processing, and found hippocampal theta-band (4–7 Hz) modulation. This study aims to survey amygdaloid theta power changes during non-emotional conflict processing using intracranial depth electrodes in nine epileptic patients (3 female; age 20–62). All patients were asked to perform a modified Stroop task. During task performance, local field potential (LFP) data was recorded from macro contacts sampled at 2 K Hz and used for analysis. Mean theta power change from baseline was compared between the incongruent and congruent task condition groups using a paired sample t-test. Seven patients were available for analysis after artifact exclusion. In five out of seven patients, statistically significant increases in theta-band power from baseline were noted during the incongruent task condition (paired sample t-test p < 0.001), including one patient exhibiting theta power increases in both task conditions. Average response time was 1.07 s (failure trials) and 1.04 s (success trials). No speed-accuracy tradeoff was noted in this analysis. These findings indicate that human amygdaloid theta-band modulation may play a role in processing non-emotional conflict. It builds directly upon work suggesting that the amygdala processes emotional conflict and provides a neurophysiological mechanism for non-emotional conflict processing as well.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Tang, Austin M.0000-0002-0472-9005
Gogia, Angad S.0000-0001-8193-1824
Del Campo-Vera, Roberto Martin0000-0001-9794-2894
Liu, Charles Y.0000-0001-6423-8577
Kellis, Spencer0000-0002-5158-1058
Lee, Brian0000-0002-3592-8146
Additional Information:© 2021 Elsevier. Received 16 April 2021, Accepted 1 July 2021, Available online 14 July 2021. We wish to acknowledge the generous support of the National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS) of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (KL2TR001854), the Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Brain-Machine Interface Center at Caltech, the Meira and Shaul G. Massry Foundation, and the Taiwan-USC Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. The authors have no financial disclosures. The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose. The highest level of ethical adherence was maintained with this manuscript. The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.
Group:Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Brain-Machine Interface CenterUNSPECIFIED
Meira and Shaul G. Massry FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Taiwan-USC Postdoctoral Fellowship ProgramUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Amygdala; Stroop; Theta; Stereo Electroencephalography; Conflict
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210908-171136409
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Austin M. Tang, Kuang-Hsuan Chen, Angad S. Gogia, Roberto Martin Del Campo-Vera, Rinu Sebastian, Zachary D. Gilbert, Yelim Lee, George Nune, Charles Y. Liu, Spencer Kellis, Brian Lee, Amygdaloid theta-band power increases during conflict processing in humans, Journal of Clinical Neuroscience, Volume 91, 2021, Pages 183-192, ISSN 0967-5868,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:110781
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:08 Sep 2021 18:59
Last Modified:08 Sep 2021 18:59

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