Search our Database of Scientific Publications and Authors

I’m looking for a
    Mindfulness-based training attenuates insula response to an aversive interoceptive challenge.
    Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci 2016 Jan 8;11(1):182-90. Epub 2014 Apr 8.
    Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, CA, USA, Warfighter Performance Department, Navel Health Research Center, San Diego, CA, USA.
    Neuroimaging studies of mindfulness training (MT) modulate anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and insula among other brain regions, which are important for attentional control, emotional regulation and interoception. Inspiratory breathing load (IBL) is an experimental approach to examine how an individual responds to an aversive stimulus. Military personnel are at increased risk for cognitive, emotional and physiological compromise as a consequence of prolonged exposure to stressful environments and, therefore, may benefit from MT. This study investigated whether MT modulates neural processing of interoceptive distress in infantry marines scheduled to undergo pre-deployment training and deployment to Afghanistan. Marines were divided into two groups: individuals who received training as usual (control) and individuals who received an additional 20-h mindfulness-based mind fitness training (MMFT). All subjects completed an IBL task during functional magnetic resonance imaging at baseline and post-MMFT training. Marines who underwent MMFT relative to controls demonstrated a significant attenuation of right anterior insula and ACC during the experience of loaded breathing. These results support the hypothesis that MT changes brain activation such that individuals process more effectively an aversive interoceptive stimulus. Thus, MT may serve as a training technique to modulate the brain's response to negative interoceptive stimuli, which may help to improve resilience.

    Similar Publications

    Modifying resilience mechanisms in at-risk individuals: a controlled study of mindfulness training in Marines preparing for deployment.
    Am J Psychiatry 2014 Aug;171(8):844-53
    Objective: Military deployment can have profound effects on physical and mental health. Few studies have examined whether interventions prior to deployment can improve mechanisms underlying resilience. Mindfulness-based techniques have been shown to aid recovery from stress and may affect brain-behavior relationships prior to deployment. Read More
    When the brain does not adequately feel the body: Links between low resilience and interoception.
    Biol Psychol 2016 Jan 28;113:37-45. Epub 2015 Nov 28.
    Psychiatry Department, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0603, USA; Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System, 3350 La Jolla Village Drive, San Diego, CA 92161, USA. Electronic address:
    This study examined neural processes of resilience during aversive interoceptive processing. Forty-six individuals were divided into three groups of resilience Low (LowRes), high (HighRes), and normal (NormRes), based on the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (2003). Participants then completed a task involving anticipation and experience of loaded breathing during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) recording. Read More
    Two systems of resting state connectivity between the insula and cingulate cortex.
    Hum Brain Mapp 2009 Sep;30(9):2731-45
    Division of Brain, Imaging and Behavior-Systems Neuroscience, Toronto Western Research Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Canada.
    The insula and cingulate cortices are implicated in emotional, homeostatic/allostatic, sensorimotor, and cognitive functions. Non-human primates have specific anatomical connections between sub-divisions of the insula and cingulate. Specifically, the anterior insula projects to the pregenual anterior cingulate cortex (pACC) and the anterior and posterior mid-cingulate cortex (aMCC and pMCC); the mid-posterior insula only projects to the posterior MCC (pMCC). Read More
    Mindfulness training modulates value signals in ventromedial prefrontal cortex through input from insular cortex.
    Neuroimage 2014 Oct 21;100:254-62. Epub 2014 Jun 21.
    Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, University College London, London WC1N 3BG, United Kingdom; Human Neuroimaging Laboratory, Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, Roanoke, VA 24016, United States. Electronic address:
    Neuroimaging research has demonstrated that ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) encodes value signals that can be modulated by top-down cognitive input such as semantic knowledge, price incentives, and monetary favors suggesting that such biases may have an identified biological basis. It has been hypothesized that mindfulness training (MT) provides one path for gaining control over such top-down influences; yet, there have been no direct tests of this hypothesis. Here, we probe the behavioral and neural effects of MT on value signals in vmPFC in a randomized longitudinal design of 8 weeks of MT on an initially naïve subject cohort. Read More