The human operculo-insular cortex is pain-preferentially but not pain-exclusively activated by trigeminal and olfactory stimuli

Increasing evidence about the central nervous representation of pain in the brain suggests that the operculo-insular cortex is a crucial part of the pain matrix. The pain-specificity of a brain region may be tested by ad
Increasing evidence about the central nervous representation of pain in the brain suggests that the operculo-insular cortex is a crucial part of the pain matrix. The pain-specificity of a brain region may be tested by administering nociceptive stimuli while controlling for unspecific activations by administering non-nociceptive stimuli. We applied this paradigm to nasal chemosensation, delivering trigeminal or olfactory stimuli, to verify the pain-specificity of the operculo-insular cortex. In detail, brain activations due to intranasal stimulation induced by non-nociceptive olfactory stimuli of hydrogen sulfide (5 ppm) or vanillin (0.8 ppm) were used to mask brain activations due to somatosensory, clearly nociceptive trigeminal stimulations with gaseous carbon dioxide (75% v/v). Functional magnetic resonance (fMRI) images were recorded from 12 healthy volunteers in a 3T head scanner during stimulus administration using an event-related design. We found that significantly more activations following nociceptive than non-nociceptive stimuli were localized bilaterally in two restricted clusters in the brain containing the primary and secondary somatosensory areas and the insular cortices consistent with the operculo-insular cortex. However, these activations completely disappeared when eliminating activations associated with the administration of olfactory stimuli, which were small but measurable. While the present experiments verify that the operculo-insular cortex plays a role in the processing of nociceptive input, they also show that it is not a pain-exclusive brain region and allow, in the experimental context, for the interpretation that the operculo-insular cortex splay a major role in the detection of and responding to salient events, whether or not these events are nociceptive or painful.
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Metadaten
Author:Jörn Lötsch, Carmen Walter, Lisa Felden, Ulrike Nöth, Ralf Deichmann, Bruno Georg Oertel
URN:urn:nbn:de:hebis:30:3-242934
DOI:http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0034798
ISSN:1932-6203
Pubmed Id:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=22496865
Parent Title (English):PLoS One
Publisher:PLoS
Place of publication:Lawrence, Kan.
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Date of Publication (online):2012/08/10
Date of first Publication:2012/04/05
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2012/08/10
Volume:7
Issue:4 : e34798
Pagenumber:10
HeBIS PPN:307234193
Institutes:Medizin
Zentrum für Arzneimittelforschung, Entwicklung und Sicherheit
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Sammlungen:Universitätspublikationen
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 3.0

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