Publications by authors named "Marlene Krauch"

7 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

An eye-tracking study of interpersonal threat sensitivity and adverse childhood experiences in borderline personality disorder.

Borderline Personal Disord Emot Dysregul 2021 Jan 4;8(1). Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Department of General Psychiatry, Center for Psychosocial Medicine, Medical Faculty, Heidelberg University, Heidelberg, Germany.

Background: Previous eye-tracking studies provide preliminary evidence for a hypersensitivity to negative, potentially threatening interpersonal cues in borderline personality disorder (BPD). From an etiological point of view, such interpersonal threat hypersensitivity might be explained by a biological vulnerability along with a history of early life adversities. The objective of the current study was to investigate interpersonal threat hypersensitivity and its association with adverse childhood experiences (ACE) in patients with BPD employing eye-tracking technology.

Methods: We examined a sample of 46 unmedicated, adult female patients with BPD and 25 healthy female volunteers, matched on age and intelligence, with a well-established emotion classification paradigm with angry, fearful, happy, and neutral facial expressions. ACE were assessed retrospectively with the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire.

Results: Patients as compared to healthy volunteers reflexively directed their gaze more quickly towards the eyes of emotional and neutral faces and did not adapt their fixation patterns according to the facial expression presented. Misclassifying emotional and neutral faces as angry correlated positively with the patients' self-reported ACE.

Conclusions: Building on and extending earlier findings, our results are likely to suggest a visual hypervigilance towards the eyes of emotional and neutral facial expressions and a childhood trauma-related anger bias in patients with BPD. Given the lack of a clinical control group, the question whether these findings are specific for BPD has to remain open. Thus, further research is needed to elucidate the specificity of altered visual attention allocation and the role of ACE in anger recognition in patients with BPD.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40479-020-00141-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7784013PMC
January 2021

Cognitive and Affective Theory of Mind in Female Patients With Borderline Personality Disorder.

J Pers Disord 2020 Oct 27:1-19. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

Department of General Psychiatry, Heidelberg University, Germany.

Empirical studies have identified deficits in cognitive and affective theory of mind (ToM) in patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD), but results remain heterogeneous and not much is known about the role of childhood trauma. The current study assessed cognitive and affective ToM in 80 patients with BPD and 41 healthy controls in a false-belief cartoon task. Childhood trauma was measured with the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ). Patients with BPD responded slower in all experimental conditions in false-belief situations, but not when false beliefs were resolved; made more errors in the cognitive ToM condition; and reported worse affective states more often in and after false-belief situations. No significant correlations between ToM and childhood trauma could be found. The current study revealed deficits in cognitive and affective ToM in patients with BPD that may be related to a more negative affective state raised by the false-belief stories.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1521/pedi_2020_34_490DOI Listing
October 2020

Cortical thickness and resting-state cardiac function across the lifespan: A cross-sectional pooled mega-analysis.

Psychophysiology 2020 Oct 10. Epub 2020 Oct 10.

Norwegian Centre for Mental Disorders Research (NORMENT), Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

Understanding the association between autonomic nervous system [ANS] function and brain morphology across the lifespan provides important insights into neurovisceral mechanisms underlying health and disease. Resting-state ANS activity, indexed by measures of heart rate [HR] and its variability [HRV] has been associated with brain morphology, particularly cortical thickness [CT]. While findings have been mixed regarding the anatomical distribution and direction of the associations, these inconsistencies may be due to sex and age differences in HR/HRV and CT. Previous studies have been limited by small sample sizes, which impede the assessment of sex differences and aging effects on the association between ANS function and CT. To overcome these limitations, 20 groups worldwide contributed data collected under similar protocols of CT assessment and HR/HRV recording to be pooled in a mega-analysis (N = 1,218 (50.5% female), mean age 36.7 years (range: 12-87)). Findings suggest a decline in HRV as well as CT with increasing age. CT, particularly in the orbitofrontal cortex, explained additional variance in HRV, beyond the effects of aging. This pattern of results may suggest that the decline in HRV with increasing age is related to a decline in orbitofrontal CT. These effects were independent of sex and specific to HRV; with no significant association between CT and HR. Greater CT across the adult lifespan may be vital for the maintenance of healthy cardiac regulation via the ANS-or greater cardiac vagal activity as indirectly reflected in HRV may slow brain atrophy. Findings reveal an important association between CT and cardiac parasympathetic activity with implications for healthy aging and longevity that should be studied further in longitudinal research.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/psyp.13688DOI Listing
October 2020

Whole-brain functional connectivity during script-driven aggression in borderline personality disorder.

Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry 2019 07 16;93:46-54. Epub 2019 Mar 16.

Dept. of General Psychiatry, Center of Psychosocial Medicine, Heidelberg University, Heidelberg, Germany.

Objective: Intense anger and anger-related aggression are frequently reported by patients with borderline personality disorders (BPD). Recent results suggest that anger-related aggression and its control is associated with a complex interplay of different neural systems in BPD. To further investigate this, we complement standard activation and seed-based connectivity analyses by examining whole-brain changes in functional connectivity during anger and reactive aggression in BPD.

Methods: We reanalyzed functional MRI data from 33 women with BPD, all of them fulfilling BPD criterion 8, "anger proneness", according to DSM-IV, and 30 healthy women. Subjects performed a script-driven imagery task consisting of four phases: baseline, anger-induction by a narrative of interpersonal rejection, a narrative of directing physical aggression towards others, and relaxation. We used a data-driven, spatially constrained spectral clustering approach to parcellate the brain into 200 regions. For each script-phase and subject, we computed the full connectivity matrix using wavelet coefficient correlations in the 0.05-0.10 Hz range. We calculated the individual increase in connectivity from baseline to the anger-induction and physical aggression phases by subtracting the corresponding connectivity matrices per subject, as well as the increase and decrease from the anger-induction to the aggression phase. We then applied permutation-based sampling to determine a combined threshold on the strength of individual connections and the size of the discovered networks for these difference matrices.

Results: We discovered a single, large network showing a significantly stronger increase in connectivity from baseline to the aggression phase in female patients with BPD compared to healthy women. This network consisted of regions in the anterior and posterior cingulate cortex, precuneus, dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, superior and middle temporal gyrus, hippocampus, insula, ventrolateral and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, superior parietal lobe, thalamus, precentral and postcentral gyrus, caudate, pallidum, cerebellum, middle occipital lobe, lingual gyrus, calcarine sulcus, and fusiform gyrus. Hub regions with highest node centrality were found in the right caudate and left thalamus. We found no significant differences for the increase of connectivity from baseline to anger-induction, as well as for the increase or decrease from the anger-induction to the aggression phase.

Conclusions: We identified a large network showing a significantly stronger increase in connectivity from baseline to the aggression phase in female patients with BPD compared to healthy women. The regions constituting this network belong to four previously described functional networks: The frontoparietal cognitive control network, the extended default mode network, the visual system, and the motor system. This stronger increase in connectivity between regions of different functional brain systems associated with cognitive control of behavior, socio-affective and self-referential thinking, as well as salience processing and emotion regulation, visual perception, and action is mediated via hubs in the thalamus and caudate, i.e., core components of the thalamocorticostriatal motor loop essential for action selection and initiation. These findings suggest increased interaction of prefrontal cognitive control processes with thalamocorticostriatal action-selection processes in female patients with BPD during the processing of aggressive action impulses, which are facilitated by states of high emotional salience and associated processes of self-referential and social processing, and ineffective emotion regulation.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pnpbp.2019.03.004DOI Listing
July 2019

Out of control? Acting out anger is associated with deficient prefrontal emotional action control in male patients with borderline personality disorder.

Neuropharmacology 2019 09 14;156:107463. Epub 2018 Dec 14.

Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging, FMRIB, Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Difficulty in anger control and anger-related aggressive outbursts against others are frequently reported by patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD). Although male sex is a known predictor for aggression, hardly any study has addressed the neural correlates of deficient anger control in male patients with BPD. Building on previous reports in female BPD, we investigated the involvement of lateral antero- and dorsal prefrontal cortex in the control of fast emotional actions and its relation to self-reported tendencies to act out anger. 15 medication-free male patients with BPD and 25 age- and intelligence-matched healthy men took part in a social Approach-Avoidance task in the MR-scanner. This task allows the measurement of neural correlates underlying the control of fast behavioral tendencies to approach happy and avoid angry faces. Hypothesis-driven region-of-interest and exploratory whole brain analyses were used to test for activations of antero- and dorsolateral prefrontal regions and their relation with the amygdala during emotional action control as well as their association with self-reported anger out in male patients with BPD and healthy volunteers. Male patients with BPD showed reduced anterolateral prefrontal activations during emotional action control compared to healthy volunteers. Furthermore, anger out was negatively related to antero- and dorsolateral prefrontal activations, while it was positively related to amygdala activity in male patients with BPD. The current results suggest the involvement of antero- and dorsolateral prefrontal regions in controlling and overriding fast emotional actions. Deficits in lateral prefrontal emotion control seem to be a common neural mechanism underlying anger-related aggression. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Current status of the neurobiology of aggression and impulsivity'.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropharm.2018.12.010DOI Listing
September 2019

Heightened Salience of Anger and Aggression in Female Adolescents With Borderline Personality Disorder-A Script-Based fMRI Study.

Front Behav Neurosci 2018 26;12:57. Epub 2018 Mar 26.

Department of General Psychiatry, Center for Psychosocial Medicine, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.

Anger and aggression belong to the core symptoms of borderline personality disorder. Although an early and specific treatment of BPD is highly relevant to prevent chronification, still little is known about anger and aggression and their neural underpinnings in adolescents with BPD. Twenty female adolescents with BPD (age 15-17 years) and 20 female healthy adolescents (age 15-17 years) took part in this functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study. A script-driven imagery paradigm was used to induce rejection-based feelings of anger, which was followed by descriptions of self-directed and other-directed aggressive reactions. To investigate the specificity of the neural activation patterns for adolescent patients, results were compared with data from 34 female adults with BPD (age 18-50 years) and 32 female healthy adults (age 18-50 years). Adolescents with BPD showed increased activations in the left posterior insula and left dorsal striatum as well as in the left inferior frontal cortex and parts of the mentalizing network during the rejection-based anger induction and the imagination of aggressive reactions compared to healthy adolescents. For the other-directed aggression phase, a significant diagnosis by age interaction confirmed that these results were specific for adolescents. The results of this very first fMRI study on anger and aggression in adolescents with BPD suggest an enhanced emotional reactivity to and higher effort in controlling anger and aggression evoked by social rejection at an early developmental stage of the disorder. Since emotion dysregulation is a known mediator for aggression in BPD, the results point to the need of appropriate early interventions for adolescents with BPD.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnbeh.2018.00057DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5879116PMC
March 2018

Interpersonal Threat Sensitivity in Borderline Personality Disorder: An Eye-Tracking Study.

J Pers Disord 2017 10 10;31(5):647-670. Epub 2017 Jan 10.

Department of Psychology, University of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany.

Threat sensitivity is a prominent predictor of interpersonal dysfunctions in borderline personality disorder (BPD), leading to intense, aversive feelings of threat and eventually dysfunctional behaviors, such as aggression. In the present study, BPD patients and healthy volunteers classified angry, fearful, neutral, and happy faces presented for 150 ms or 5,000 ms to investigate initial saccades and facial scanning. Patients more often wrongly identified anger, responded slower to all faces, and made faster saccades towards the eyes of briefly presented neutral faces and slower saccades away from fearful eyes compared with healthy volunteers. Latency of initial saccades and fixation duration correlated negatively with the patients' aggressiveness. Supporting previous results, BPD patients did not experience general deficits in facial emotion processing, but a specific hypersensitivity for and deficits in detailed evaluation of threat cues, which was particularly enhanced in aggressive patients. Interventions might benefit from relocating attention towards positive information and detailed evaluation of social cues.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1521/pedi_2017_31_273DOI Listing
October 2017