93; SD = 1.28) on a visual analogue scale (VAS) from 0 (no pain) to 10 (worst pain imaginable). The moderate pain stimulation was used for ethical reasons. Another group of 16 healthy individuals (seven males, mean age 25.7 [SD = 4.41]), who did not participate in the fMRI experiment, additionally evaluated the valence (mean 7.81, SD = 0.91 on the scale from 1 = very pleasant to 9 = very unpleasant)
and arousal (mean 7.31, Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical SD = 1.54 on the scale from 1 to 9) of the same stimuli. The examination was always accompanied by a physician. The patient’s vital signs (heart rate, oxygen BTK inhibition saturation) were monitored continuously. Image acquisition and statistical analysis Blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) images were obtained at two imaging centers (Bad Aibling and Tuebingen, Germany) in order to avoid unnecessary patient transportation. In Bad Aibling, where 22 patients were examined, data were collected using a 1.5 Tesla MRI Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical scanner (TIM Symphony; Siemens Medical Systems, Erlangen, Germany) system equipped with a 12-channel head coil. Changes in BOLD T2*-weighted MR signal were Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical measured using a gradient echo-planar
imaging (EPI) sequence (TR = 3410 msec, TE = 50 msec, FoV = 192 mm, flip angle = 90°, 64 × 64 matrix, 36 slices covering the whole brain, slice thickness 3.0 mm, no gap, voxel size 3 × 3 × 3 mm). A T1-weighted anatomical image was additionally acquired for each subject to allow anatomical localization (TR = 2300 msec, TE = 2.98 msec, 160 slices, voxel size 1.0 × 1.0 × 1.1 mm). In Tuebingen, imaging was performed Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical on a 3 T Siemens Trio scanner. After a T2*-weighted acquisition (TR = 2380 msec, echo time = 25 msec, FoV = 210 mm, flip angle = 90°, 64 × 64 matrix, 40 slices
covering the whole brain, slice thickness 3 mm, no gap, voxel size 3.3 × 3.3 × 3.0 mm), anatomical images were obtained using the MP-RAGE sequence (repetition time = 2300 msec, Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical echo time = 2.98 msec, 160 slices, slice thickness = 1 mm, voxel size 1.0 × 1.0 × 1.1 mm). Magnetic resonance imaging scans of the 15 healthy subjects were acquired in Bad Aibling using the above-mentioned 1.5 T Siemens Symphony MR Scanner and the same imaging parameters. Image processing and statistical analysis were conducted using Statistical Parametric Mapping (Friston et al. 1995) version 8 (Wellcome Department of Cognitive Neurology, London, UK; http://www.fil.ion.ucl.ac.uk/spm/software/spm8/). Endonuclease Preprocessing included realignment, coregistration, segmentation, and spatial normalization (template of Montreal Neurological Institute [MNI]). Then, a Gaussian filter of 8-mm full width at half maximum was applied to smooth the data spatially. For the statistical analysis of regional differences in brain activation, painful stimulation and resting condition were input into the categorical general linear model design at the subject level (Friston et al. 1995). Contrasts between pain and baseline conditions were computed for each subject.