Do brain responses to emotional images and cigarette cues differ? An fMRI study in smokers

Francesco Versace, Jeffrey M. Engelmann, Edward F. Jackson, Vincent Costa, Jason D. Robinson, Cho Y. Lam, Jennifer A. Minnix, Victoria L. Brown, David W. Wetter, Paul M. Cinciripini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Chronic smoking is thought to cause changes in brain reward systems that result in overvaluation of cigarette-related stimuli and undervaluation of natural rewards. We tested the hypotheses that, in smokers, brain circuits involved in emotional processing: (i) would be more active during exposure to cigarette-related than neutral pictures; and (ii) would be less active to pleasant compared with cigarette-related pictures, suggesting a devaluation of intrinsically pleasant stimuli. We obtained whole-brain blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging data from 35 smokers during the presentation of pleasant (erotica and romance), unpleasant (mutilations and sad), neutral, and cigarette-related pictures. Whole-brain analyses showed significantly larger BOLD responses during presentation of cigarette-related pictures relative to neutral ones within the secondary visual areas, the cingulate gyrus, the frontal gyrus, the dorsal striatum, and the left insula. BOLD responses to erotic pictures exceeded responses to cigarette-related pictures in all clusters except the insula. Within the left insula we observed larger BOLD responses to cigarette-related pictures than to all other picture categories. By including intrinsically pleasant and unpleasant pictures in addition to neutral ones, we were able to conclude that the presentation of cigarette-related pictures activates brain areas supporting emotional processes, but we did not find evidence of overall reduced activation of the brain reward systems in the presence of intrinsically pleasant stimuli.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2054-2063
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Volume34
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Tobacco Products
Cues
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Brain
Reward
Erotica
Gyrus Cinguli
Smoking

Keywords

  • Emotions
  • Insula
  • Nicotine
  • Pictures
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Versace, F., Engelmann, J. M., Jackson, E. F., Costa, V., Robinson, J. D., Lam, C. Y., ... Cinciripini, P. M. (2011). Do brain responses to emotional images and cigarette cues differ? An fMRI study in smokers. European Journal of Neuroscience, 34(12), 2054-2063. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07915.x

Do brain responses to emotional images and cigarette cues differ? An fMRI study in smokers. / Versace, Francesco; Engelmann, Jeffrey M.; Jackson, Edward F.; Costa, Vincent; Robinson, Jason D.; Lam, Cho Y.; Minnix, Jennifer A.; Brown, Victoria L.; Wetter, David W.; Cinciripini, Paul M.

In: European Journal of Neuroscience, Vol. 34, No. 12, 01.12.2011, p. 2054-2063.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Versace, F, Engelmann, JM, Jackson, EF, Costa, V, Robinson, JD, Lam, CY, Minnix, JA, Brown, VL, Wetter, DW & Cinciripini, PM 2011, 'Do brain responses to emotional images and cigarette cues differ? An fMRI study in smokers', European Journal of Neuroscience, vol. 34, no. 12, pp. 2054-2063. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07915.x
Versace, Francesco ; Engelmann, Jeffrey M. ; Jackson, Edward F. ; Costa, Vincent ; Robinson, Jason D. ; Lam, Cho Y. ; Minnix, Jennifer A. ; Brown, Victoria L. ; Wetter, David W. ; Cinciripini, Paul M. / Do brain responses to emotional images and cigarette cues differ? An fMRI study in smokers. In: European Journal of Neuroscience. 2011 ; Vol. 34, No. 12. pp. 2054-2063.
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