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Brain Sci., Volume 7, Issue 3 (March 2017)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Application of Linear Mixed-Effects Models in Human Neuroscience Research: A Comparison with Pearson Correlation in Two Auditory Electrophysiology Studies
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 26; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030026
Received: 31 December 2016 / Revised: 15 February 2017 / Accepted: 24 February 2017 / Published: 27 February 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (356 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Neurophysiological studies are often designed to examine relationships between measures from different testing conditions, time points, or analysis techniques within the same group of participants. Appropriate statistical techniques that can take into account repeated measures and multivariate predictor variables are integral and essential
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Neurophysiological studies are often designed to examine relationships between measures from different testing conditions, time points, or analysis techniques within the same group of participants. Appropriate statistical techniques that can take into account repeated measures and multivariate predictor variables are integral and essential to successful data analysis and interpretation. This work implements and compares conventional Pearson correlations and linear mixed-effects (LME) regression models using data from two recently published auditory electrophysiology studies. For the specific research questions in both studies, the Pearson correlation test is inappropriate for determining strengths between the behavioral responses for speech-in-noise recognition and the multiple neurophysiological measures as the neural responses across listening conditions were simply treated as independent measures. In contrast, the LME models allow a systematic approach to incorporate both fixed-effect and random-effect terms to deal with the categorical grouping factor of listening conditions, between-subject baseline differences in the multiple measures, and the correlational structure among the predictor variables. Together, the comparative data demonstrate the advantages as well as the necessity to apply mixed-effects models to properly account for the built-in relationships among the multiple predictor variables, which has important implications for proper statistical modeling and interpretation of human behavior in terms of neural correlates and biomarkers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Leisure Activities and Change in Cognitive Stability: A Multivariate Approach
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 27; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030027
Received: 8 December 2016 / Revised: 17 January 2017 / Accepted: 25 February 2017 / Published: 1 March 2017
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Abstract
Aging is traditionally associated with cognitive decline, attested by slower reaction times and poorer performance in various cognitive tasks, but also by an increase in intraindividual variability (IIV) in cognitive performance. Results concerning how lifestyle activities protect from cognitive decline are mixed in
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Aging is traditionally associated with cognitive decline, attested by slower reaction times and poorer performance in various cognitive tasks, but also by an increase in intraindividual variability (IIV) in cognitive performance. Results concerning how lifestyle activities protect from cognitive decline are mixed in the literature and all focused on how it affects mean performance. However, IIV has been proven to be an index more sensitive to age differences, and very little is known about the relationships between lifestyle activities and change in IIV in aging. This longitudinal study explores the association between frequency of physical, social, intellectual, artistic, or cultural activities and age-related change in various cognitive abilities, considering both mean performance and IIV. Ninety-six participants, aged 64–93 years, underwent a battery of cognitive tasks at four measurements over a seven-year period, and filled out a lifestyle activity questionnaire. Linear multilevel models were used to analyze the associations between change in cognitive performance and five types of activities. Results showed that the practice of leisure activities was more strongly associated with IIV than with mean performance, both when considering overall level and change in performance. Relationships with IIV were dependent of the cognitive tasks considered and overall results showed protective effects of cultural, physical and intellectual activities on IIV. These results underline the need for considering IIV in the study of age-related cognitive change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Risk and Protective Factors for Neurocognitive Aging)
Open AccessArticle Insomnia and Personality—A Network Approach
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 28; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030028
Received: 18 January 2017 / Revised: 22 February 2017 / Accepted: 28 February 2017 / Published: 2 March 2017
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Abstract
Studies on personality traits and insomnia have remained inconclusive about which traits show the most direct associations with insomnia severity. It has moreover hardly been explored how traits relate to specific characteristics of insomnia. We here used network analysis in a large sample
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Studies on personality traits and insomnia have remained inconclusive about which traits show the most direct associations with insomnia severity. It has moreover hardly been explored how traits relate to specific characteristics of insomnia. We here used network analysis in a large sample (N = 2089) to obtain an integrated view on the associations of personality traits with both overall insomnia severity and different insomnia characteristics, while distinguishing direct from indirect associations. We first estimated a network describing the associations among the five factor model personality traits and overall insomnia severity. Overall insomnia severity was associated with neuroticism, agreeableness, and openness. Subsequently, we estimated a separate network describing the associations among the personality traits and each of the seven individual items of the Insomnia Severity Index. This revealed relatively separate clusters of daytime and nocturnal insomnia complaints, that both contributed to dissatisfaction with sleep, and were both most directly associated with neuroticism and conscientiousness. The approach revealed the strongest direct associations between personality traits and the severity of different insomnia characteristics and overall insomnia severity. Differentiating them from indirect associations identified the targets for improving Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for insomnia with the highest probability of effectively changing the network of associated complaints. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Research in Insomnia)
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Open AccessArticle Predictors of Nightly Subjective-Objective Sleep Discrepancy in Poor Sleepers over a Seven-Day Period
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 29; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030029
Received: 20 December 2016 / Revised: 27 February 2017 / Accepted: 2 March 2017 / Published: 9 March 2017
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Abstract
This study sought to examine predictors of subjective/objective sleep discrepancy in poor sleepers. Forty-two individuals with insomnia symptoms (mean age = 36.2 years, 81% female) were recruited to take part in a prospective study which combined seven days of actigraphy with daily assessment
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This study sought to examine predictors of subjective/objective sleep discrepancy in poor sleepers. Forty-two individuals with insomnia symptoms (mean age = 36.2 years, 81% female) were recruited to take part in a prospective study which combined seven days of actigraphy with daily assessment of sleep perceptions, self-reported arousal, sleep effort, and mood upon awakening. A high level of intra-individual variability in measures of sleep discrepancy was observed. Multilevel modelling revealed that higher levels of pre-sleep cognitive activity and lower mood upon awakening were significantly and independently predictive of the underestimation of total sleep time. Greater levels of sleep effort predicted overestimation of sleep onset latency. These results indicate that psychophysiological variables are related to subjective/objective sleep discrepancy and may be important therapeutic targets in the management of insomnia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Research in Insomnia)
Open AccessArticle Modeling the Development of Audiovisual Cue Integration in Speech Perception
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 32; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030032
Received: 15 November 2016 / Revised: 3 March 2017 / Accepted: 16 March 2017 / Published: 21 March 2017
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Abstract
Adult speech perception is generally enhanced when information is provided from multiple modalities. In contrast, infants do not appear to benefit from combining auditory and visual speech information early in development. This is true despite the fact that both modalities are important to
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Adult speech perception is generally enhanced when information is provided from multiple modalities. In contrast, infants do not appear to benefit from combining auditory and visual speech information early in development. This is true despite the fact that both modalities are important to speech comprehension even at early stages of language acquisition. How then do listeners learn how to process auditory and visual information as part of a unified signal? In the auditory domain, statistical learning processes provide an excellent mechanism for acquiring phonological categories. Is this also true for the more complex problem of acquiring audiovisual correspondences, which require the learner to integrate information from multiple modalities? In this paper, we present simulations using Gaussian mixture models (GMMs) that learn cue weights and combine cues on the basis of their distributional statistics. First, we simulate the developmental process of acquiring phonological categories from auditory and visual cues, asking whether simple statistical learning approaches are sufficient for learning multi-modal representations. Second, we use this time course information to explain audiovisual speech perception in adult perceivers, including cases where auditory and visual input are mismatched. Overall, we find that domain-general statistical learning techniques allow us to model the developmental trajectory of audiovisual cue integration in speech, and in turn, allow us to better understand the mechanisms that give rise to unified percepts based on multiple cues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Audiovisual Integration in Early Language Development)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Hyperarousal and Beyond: New Insights to the Pathophysiology of Insomnia Disorder through Functional Neuroimaging Studies
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 23; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030023
Received: 22 December 2016 / Revised: 9 February 2017 / Accepted: 16 February 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1292 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Neuroimaging studies have produced seemingly contradictory findings in regards to the pathophysiology of insomnia. Although most study results are interpreted from the perspective of a “hyperarousal” model, the aggregate findings from neuroimaging studies suggest a more complex model is needed. We provide a
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Neuroimaging studies have produced seemingly contradictory findings in regards to the pathophysiology of insomnia. Although most study results are interpreted from the perspective of a “hyperarousal” model, the aggregate findings from neuroimaging studies suggest a more complex model is needed. We provide a review of the major findings from neuroimaging studies, then discuss them in relation to a heuristic model of sleep-wake states that involves three major factors: wake drive, sleep drive, and level of conscious awareness. We propose that insomnia involves dysregulation in these factors, resulting in subtle dysregulation of sleep-wake states throughout the 24 h light/dark cycle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Research in Insomnia)
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Open AccessReview Genes, Gender, Environment, and Novel Functions of Estrogen Receptor Beta in the Susceptibility to Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 24; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030024
Received: 17 October 2016 / Revised: 14 February 2017 / Accepted: 17 February 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (433 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Many neurological disorders affect men and women differently regarding prevalence, progression, and severity. It is clear that many of these disorders may originate from defective signaling during fetal or perinatal brain development, which may affect males and females differently. Such sex-specific differences may
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Many neurological disorders affect men and women differently regarding prevalence, progression, and severity. It is clear that many of these disorders may originate from defective signaling during fetal or perinatal brain development, which may affect males and females differently. Such sex-specific differences may originate from chromosomal or sex-hormone specific effects. This short review will focus on the estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) signaling during perinatal brain development and put it in the context of sex-specific differences in neurodevelopmental disorders. We will discuss ERβ’s recent discovery in directing DNA de-methylation to specific sites, of which one such site may bear consequences for the susceptibility to the neurological reading disorder dyslexia. We will also discuss how dysregulations in sex-hormone signaling, like those evoked by endocrine disruptive chemicals, may affect this and other neurodevelopmental disorders in a sex-specific manner through ERβ. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sex Differences in Brain Development)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Neuronal Stress and Injury Caused by HIV-1, cART and Drug Abuse: Converging Contributions to HAND
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 25; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030025
Received: 18 January 2017 / Revised: 15 February 2017 / Accepted: 20 February 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
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Abstract
Multiple mechanisms appear to contribute to neuronal stress and injury underlying HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND), which occur despite the successful introduction of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART). Evidence is accumulating that components of cART can itself be neurotoxic upon long-term exposure. In addition, abuse
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Multiple mechanisms appear to contribute to neuronal stress and injury underlying HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND), which occur despite the successful introduction of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART). Evidence is accumulating that components of cART can itself be neurotoxic upon long-term exposure. In addition, abuse of psychostimulants, such as methamphetamine (METH), seems to compromise antiretroviral therapy and aggravate HAND. However, the combined effect of virus and recreational and therapeutic drugs on the brain is still incompletely understood. However, several lines of evidence suggest a shared critical role of oxidative stress, compromised neuronal energy homeostasis and autophagy in promotion and prevention of neuronal dysfunction associated with HIV-1 infection, cART and psychostimulant use. In this review, we present a synopsis of recent work related to neuronal stress and injury induced by HIV infection, antiretrovirals (ARVs) and the highly addictive psychostimulant METH. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders (HAND))
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Open AccessReview The Role of Adenosine Signaling in Headache: A Review
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 30; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030030
Received: 28 December 2016 / Revised: 5 March 2017 / Accepted: 7 March 2017 / Published: 13 March 2017
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Abstract
Migraine is the third most prevalent disease on the planet, yet our understanding of its mechanisms and pathophysiology is surprisingly incomplete. Recent studies have built upon decades of evidence that adenosine, a purine nucleoside that can act as a neuromodulator, is involved in
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Migraine is the third most prevalent disease on the planet, yet our understanding of its mechanisms and pathophysiology is surprisingly incomplete. Recent studies have built upon decades of evidence that adenosine, a purine nucleoside that can act as a neuromodulator, is involved in pain transmission and sensitization. Clinical evidence and rodent studies have suggested that adenosine signaling also plays a critical role in migraine headache. This is further supported by the widespread use of caffeine, an adenosine receptor antagonist, in several headache treatments. In this review, we highlight evidence that supports the involvement of adenosine signaling in different forms of headache, headache triggers, and basic headache physiology. This evidence supports adenosine A2A receptors as a critical adenosine receptor subtype involved in headache pain. Adenosine A2A receptor signaling may contribute to headache via the modulation of intracellular Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) production or 5' AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activity in neurons and glia to affect glutamatergic synaptic transmission within the brainstem. This evidence supports the further study of adenosine signaling in headache and potentially illuminates it as a novel therapeutic target for migraine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Pathogenesis and Treatment of Headache Disorders)

Other

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Open AccessCorrection Correction: Krymchantowski, A.V.; et al. Medication-Overuse Headache: Differences between Daily and Near-Daily Headache Patients; Brain Sciences 2016, 6, 30
Brain Sci. 2017, 7(3), 31; doi:10.3390/brainsci7030031
Received: 14 March 2017 / Accepted: 15 March 2017 / Published: 17 March 2017
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Pathogenesis and Treatment of Headache Disorders)

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