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Oxytocin effects on the resting-state mentalizing brain network

Wu, Haiyan and Feng, Chunliang and Lu, Xiaping and Liu, Xun and Liu, Quanying (2020) Oxytocin effects on the resting-state mentalizing brain network. Brain Imaging and Behavior, 14 (6). pp. 2530-2541. ISSN 1931-7557.

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Oxytocin (OT) has modulatory effects in both human behavior and in the brain, which is not limited in the specific brain area but also with the potential effect on connectivity with other brain regions. Evidence indicates that OT effects on human behavior are multifaceted, such as trust behavior, decrease anxiety, empathy and bonding behavior. For the vital role of mentalizing in understanding others, here we examine whether OT has a general effect on mentalizing brain network which is associated to the effect of related social behavioral and personality traits. Using a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled group design, we investigate the resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging after intranasal OT or placebo. The functional connectivity (FC) maps with seed in left/right temporoparietal junction (lTPJ/rTPJ) showed that OT significantly increased connectivity between rTPJ and default attention network (DAN), but decreased the FC between lTPJ and medial prefrontal network (MPN). With machine learning approach, we report that identified altered FCs of TPJ can classify OT and placebo (PL) group. Moreover, individual’s empathy trait can modulate the FC between left TPJ and right rectus (RECT), which shows a positive correlation with empathic concern in PL group but a negative correlation in OT group. These results demonstrate that OT has significant effect on FC with lTPJ and rTPJ, brain regions where are critical for mentalizing, and the empathy concern can modulate the FC. These findings advance our understanding of the neural mechanisms by which OT modulates social behaviors, especially in social interaction involving mentalizing.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Wu, Haiyan0000-0001-8869-6636
Liu, Xun0000-0003-1366-8926
Liu, Quanying0000-0002-2501-7656
Additional Information:© 2020 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature. First Online: 18 January 2020. This study was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China [grant number: U1736125, 31400963], and CAS Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology to HW. QL was funded by James Boswell fellowship and FWO fellowship. Compliance with ethical standards. The authors declare no competing financial interests. Ethical approval: All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Natural Science Foundation of ChinaU1736125
National Natural Science Foundation of China31400963
Chinese Academy of SciencesUNSPECIFIED
James G. Boswell FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (FWO)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Oxytocin; Functional connectivity; fMRI; Temporoparietal junction; Mentalizing network
Issue or Number:6
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20181128-093527136
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Wu, H., Feng, C., Lu, X. et al. Oxytocin effects on the resting-state mentalizing brain network. Brain Imaging and Behavior 14, 2530–2541 (2020).
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:91282
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:28 Nov 2018 19:04
Last Modified:03 Dec 2020 23:46

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