Functional magnetic resonance imaging; Transcranial magnetic stimulation; Multivariate ; Fear conditioning; Fear memory
Tzovara Athina, Meyer Sofie S., Bonaiuto James J., Abivardi Aslan, Dolan Raymond J., Barnes Gareth R., Bach Dominik R. (2019), High‐precision magnetoencephalography for reconstructing amygdalar and hippocampal oscillations during prediction of safety and threat, in Human Brain Mapping
, 40(14), 4114-4129.
Tzovara Athina, Korn Christoph W., Bach Dominik R. (2018), Human Pavlovian fear conditioning conforms to probabilistic learning, in PLOS Computational Biology
, 14(8), e1006243-e1006243.
Staib Matthias, Bach Dominik R (2017), Stimulus-invariant auditory cortex threat encoding during fear conditioning with simple and complex sounds., in NeuroImage
, 166, 276-284.
Gerster Samuel, Namer Barbara, Elam Mikael, Bach Dominik R (2017), Testing a linear time invariant model for skin conductance responses by intraneural recording and stimulation., in Psychophysiology
Bach D R, Tzovara A, Vunder J (2017), Blocking human fear memory with the matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor doxycycline., in Molecular psychiatry
Korn Christoph W, Staib Matthias, Tzovara Athina, Castegnetti Giuseppe, Bach Dominik R (2017), A pupil size response model to assess fear learning., in Psychophysiology
, 54(3), 330-343.
Castegnetti Giuseppe, Tzovara Athina, Staib Matthias, Gerster Samuel, Bach Dominik R (2017), Assessing fear learning via conditioned respiratory amplitude responses., in Psychophysiology
, 54(2), 215-223.
Khemka Saurabh, Tzovara Athina, Gerster Samuel, Quednow Boris B, Bach Dominik R (2017), Modeling startle eyeblink electromyogram to assess fear learning., in Psychophysiology
, 54(2), 204-214.
Korn Christoph W, Bach Dominik R (2016), A solid frame for the window on cognition: Modeling event-related pupil responses., in Journal of vision
, 16(3), 28-28.
Bach Dominik R, Gerster Samuel, Tzovara Athina, Castegnetti Giuseppe (2016), A linear model for event-related respiration responses., in Journal of neuroscience methods
, 270, 147-55.
Paulus Philipp C, Castegnetti Giuseppe, Bach Dominik R (2016), Modeling event-related heart period responses., in Psychophysiology
, 53(6), 837-46.
Castegnetti Giuseppe, Tzovara Athina, Staib Matthias, Paulus Philipp C, Hofer Nicolas, Bach Dominik R (2016), Modeling fear-conditioned bradycardia in humans., in Psychophysiology
, 53(6), 930-9.
Staib Matthias, Castegnetti Giuseppe, Bach Dominik R (2015), Optimising a model-based approach to inferring fear learning from skin conductance responses., in Journal of neuroscience methods
, 255, 131-8.
Bach Dominik R, Staib Matthias (2015), A matching pursuit algorithm for inferring tonic sympathetic arousal from spontaneous skin conductance fluctuations., in Psychophysiology
, 52(8), 1106-12.
Learning to predict danger is a fundamental adaptive strategy for most animal organisms. Missing a source of danger might imply death. On the other hand, false alarms - predicting danger when there is none - wastes valuable resources necessary for survival, and is often thought to underlie human psychiatric conditions such as phobias, generalized anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder, and even depression. Hence, research into this area is of interest both for a basic understanding of the brain and for clinical application. Pavlovian delay fear conditioning (DFC) is a translational paradigm for the comparative study of aversive learning. Most research suggests that during DFC, the association between a simple predictive cue - conditioned stimulus, CS - and an aversive event - unconditioned stimulus, US - is formed in the amygdala. However, in the last decade, cortical plasticity in this model has received renewed interest and might account for some features of DFC that have not yet been explained. Crucially, these data suggest that learning mechanisms might be different for the very simple paradigms commonly used in animal assays, and more complex tasks, which are probably more relevant to psychiatric disorder. As yet, this has only been assessed in rodents, and replication in primate species is lacking. Importantly, recent research has suggested possible species differences in the representation of fear memory between rodents and primates; at present this claim has neither been refuted nor substantiated, warranting further cross-species research. In the current project, I propose to revisit the question of cortical plasticity, long-term fear memory storage, and CS/US-interval (trace fear conditioning) in humans, using a combination of high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging with multivariate pattern analysis, as well as transcranial magnetic stimulation. The project will investigate to which extent CS complexity determines whether cortical pre-processing and/or plasticity are necessary for DFC, whether amygdala-based fear memories are reconfigured after training, and at which time point during training the amygdala and hippocampus are required for fear memory. The project is based on animal work, but capitalises on state-of-the art research methods in humans in order to assess how animal concepts can be generalised across species boundaries, and to furnish possible application to psychiatric disorder.