Competition for neuronal resources: how hallucinations make themselves heard

Hubl, Daniela; Koenig, Thomas; Strik, Werner K; Garcia, Lester Melie; Dierks, Thomas (2007). Competition for neuronal resources: how hallucinations make themselves heard. British journal of psychiatry, 190, pp. 57-62. London: Royal College of Psychiatrists 10.1192/bjp.bp.106.022954

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BACKGROUND: Hallucinations are perceptions in the absence of a corresponding external sensory stimulus. However, during auditory verbal hallucinations, activation of the primary auditory cortex has been described. AIMS: The objective of this study was to investigate whether this activation of the auditory cortex contributes essentially to the character of hallucinations and attributes them to alien sources, or whether the auditory activation is a sign of increased general auditory attention to external sounds. METHOD: The responsiveness of the auditory cortex was investigated by auditory evoked potentials (N100) during the simultaneous occurrence of hallucinations and external stimuli. Evoked potentials were computed separately for periods with and without hallucinations; N100 power, topography and brain electrical sources were analysed. RESULTS: Hallucinations lowered the N100 amplitudes and changed the topography, presumably due to a reduced left temporal responsivity. CONCLUSIONS: This finding indicates competition between auditory stimuli and hallucinations for physiological resources in the primary auditory cortex. The abnormal activation of the primary auditory cortex may thus be a constituent of auditory hallucinations.

Item Type: Journal Article (Original Article)
Division/Institute: 04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > UPD Murtenstrasse
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Experimental Psychology and Neuropsychology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Management
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Psychiatric Neurophysiology (discontinued)
UniBE Contributor: Hubl, Daniela; König, Thomas; Strik, Werner and Dierks, Thomas
ISSN: 0007-1250
Publisher: Royal College of Psychiatrists
Language: English
Submitter: Factscience Import
Date Deposited: 04 Oct 2013 14:51
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2013 13:44
Publisher DOI: 10.1192/bjp.bp.106.022954
PubMed ID: 17197657
Web of Science ID: 000243677300010
URI: http://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/21533 (FactScience: 7344)

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