The purpose of this study is to use brain imaging technology to measure changes in blood flow
to areas in the brain as individuals perform intellectual tasks.
This study will use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine blood flow to
areas of the brain as participants engage in tasks associated with visual perception, visual
recognition, and memory.
Our goal is to study the functional organization of the intact human brain by combining
cognitive tasks and neuroimaging. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and
magnetoencephalography (MEG) will be used to measure brain activity in healthy human subjects
engaged in performing cognitive tasks. These tasks will address specific questions concerning
the neural systems that mediate perception, attention, memory, decision-making, emotion,
plasticity and social interactions. fMRI and MEG, respectively, will be employed to
investigate the spatial and temporal aspects of these neural systems.
Normal volunteer participants aged 18-65, who are in good general health will be recruited
from the local community and studied under this minimal risk protocol.
Subjects will perform cognitive tasks in behavioral and/or neuroimaging sessions (fMRI or
Behavior as performance on cognitive tasks, and brain activity (fMRI and MEG) will be
combined to yield information about the neural correlates and processes underlying different
aspects of human cognition including visual perception, memory, learning, emotion, social
cognition, decision-making and attention.
- INCLUSION CRITERIA:
Healthy adults, with at least a high school education, aged 18 to 65 years, will be
recruited to participate in the study.
Subjects will be excluded if they:
- are an NIMH employee or a relative
- have evidence of, or a history of:
- major medical, neurological or psychiatric illness
- serious head injury
- learning disability-drug or alcohol abuse or dependence in the past 3 months, except
-are taking prescription drugs or supplements that may affect brain function-
-have serious vision or hearing problems
In addition to the above, additional exclusion criteria apply for all MRI studies:
- Female subjects who are pregnant or have a positive pregnancy test 24 hours prior to
an experiment will be excluded from neuroimaging studies.
- All subjects will be questioned prior to MRI scanning for possible occupational
exposure to metal slivers or shavings, which may have become accidentally lodged in
the tissues of the head or neck. Subjects with surgical clips or shrapnel in or near
the brain or blood vessels, subjects with cochlear implants, subjects with any
metallic body in the eye or CNS, and subjects with any form of implant wire or metal
device which may concentrate radiofrequency fields will be excluded from MRI scanning
experiments because of possible risks during MRI scanning. Those whose history is
suggestive of such a problem will also be excluded from the MRI portion of the
experiments. They may still participate in the behavioral and MEG experiments.
- Subjects unable to lie flat on their back for up to 2 hours may not be eligible to
participate in MRI scans.