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Neurosci Lett. 2000 Mar 31;283(1):21-4.

The source generator of respiratory-related anxiety potential in the human brain.

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  • 1Second Department of Physiology, Showa University School of Medicine, Hatanodai 1-5-8, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo, Japan.


In this study, we used the dipole tracing method of a scalp-skull-brain head model to determine the location of the electric current source which correlates with the increased respiratory rate due to anxiety in humans. Anticipatory anxiety was produced by giving electrical stimulation to the left forefinger after the warning red light. While administering anticipatory anxiety, subjects' anxiety state and respiratory rates increased. In averaged electroencephalogram, which was triggered by onset of inspiration, positive waves were observed approximately 350 ms after the onset of inspiration. In this period of time, dipoles were concentrated in the right temporal pole, and the temporal pole and the amygdala in the most anxious subject. This data suggests that there are respiratory-related neural activities in limbic and paralimbic areas which may correlate with anxiety in humans.

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