Each CS was presented for 10 s during the experiment and the US was administered at 9.85 s in paired trials and co-terminated with the CS (Fig. 1A). At 7 s after CS onset, subjects performed an expectancy rating, which consisted of judging the likelihood of US delivery on a discrete scale. For this purpose, three symbols (−, ? and +) appeared underneath the fractal images for 2 s and participants rated the likelihood via button press according to the symbols’ meaning (“no shock”, “maybe shock”, “shock”). The intertrial interval varied randomly selleck kinase inhibitor between 9 and 11 s across trials. During the intertrial interval
a fixation cross was shown on the screen. The instructions were to concentrate on the images and complete the expectancy rating spontaneously in every trial. Subjects were aware that their responses did not influence the likelihood of US delivery. Before the experiment, subjects were familiarized with the task using different fractal images without US presentation. INCB024360 clinical trial Subjects were not informed about the two experimental phases prior to the experiment and the reversal stage started immediately after acquisition without announcement. Task presentation and recording of behavioural responses were performed with the software Presentation (Neurobehavioral Systems, Albany, CA, USA). Skin conductance responses (SCRs)
were recorded using a constant voltage system with Ag/AgCl electrodes placed on the hypothenar eminence of the left hand. Responses were amplified and digitized at 1000 Hz (CED 2502 and micro 1401, Cambridge Electronic Design, Cambridge, UK). A 3 Tesla system (TRIO; Siemens, Erlangen, Germany) equipped with a 32-channel head coil was used for acquisition of the fMRI data. Thirty-six transversal slices (slice thickness, 1.5 mm; no gap) were obtained in each volume using a high-resolution T2*-sensitive gradient echo-planar imaging sequence (repetition
time, 2680 ms; echo time, 30 ms; flip angle, 80°; field of view, 219 × 219 mm; in-plane resolution, 1.5 × 1.5 mm; parallel imaging with acceleration factor 2). Functional image coverage included the medial temporal Montelukast Sodium lobe, parts of the prefrontal cortex and brainstem areas. High-resolution T1-weighted anatomical images (1 × 1 ×1 mm³) were also acquired using a magnetization prepared rapid gradient echo sequence. We acquired four sessions consisting of between 210 and 250 volumes each, to sustain optimal quality of the high-resolution fMRI data. The sessions succeeded with the shortest possible latency (40–50 s) and the experimental presentation was not interrupted during scanner breaks in order to assure continuous learning unbiased by attentional changes caused by experimental breaks.