Interaction between cognition, emotion, and the autonomic nervous system

Critchley, Hugo D, Eccles, Jessica and Garfinkel, Sarah N (2013) Interaction between cognition, emotion, and the autonomic nervous system. In: Buijs, Ruud and Swaab, Dick (eds.) Autonomic Nervous System. Handbook of Clinical Neurology, 117 . Elsevier, pp. 59-77. ISBN 9780444534910

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The mind and body are intrinsically and dynamically coupled. Perceptions, thoughts and feelings change, and respond to, the state of the body. This chapter describes the integration of cognitive and affective processes with the autonomic control of bodily arousal, focusing on reciprocal effects of autonomic responses on decision making, error detection, memory and emotions. Neuroimaging techniques are beginning to detail the neuronal substrates mediating these interactions between mental and physiological states, implicating cortical regions (specifically insular and cingulate cortices) alongside subcortical (amygdala) and brainstem (notably dorsal pons) in these mechanisms. The extent to which bodily states influence mental processes is determined in part by “interoceptive sensitivity,” an index of individual differences in the ability to detect one’s own bodily sensations. Moreover, the misidentification or misattribution of interoceptive responses is implicated in a number of pathologies such as depersonalization, schizophrenia, and anxiety. Increasing knowledge of the mechanisms of body–mind interactions has wide ranging implications, from decision making to empathy, and may serve elucidate potential avenues of intervention for stress-sensitive conditions in which psychological, cognitive, and emotional factors impact on the expression of physical symptoms.

Item Type: Book Section
Keywords: Autonomic; memory; decision making; emotion; introspection; insula; psychosomatic medicine; psychosis; neuroimaging
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Clinical and Experimental Medicine
Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Neuroscience
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neurosciences. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Depositing User: Christina Lee
Date Deposited: 09 Mar 2015 09:21
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2017 11:17

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