We assume that this effect most probably reflects superior posterior cerebellar activity, which might be associated with UCS processing and preparation for action (e.g. restraining the shocked hand). There is substantial evidence for an involvement of the cerebellum, and especially superior parts of the posterior cerebellum, in affective associative learning (e.g. Timmann et al., 2008). Moreover, evidence is accumulating for cerebellar activity during emotional processing of affective stimuli per se, such as pain or affective pictures
(e.g. Moulton et al., 2011). Activations for emotional stimuli are also predominantly found at posterior parts of the cerebellum (Stoodley & Schmahmann, 2009), raising its chance for detectability with MEG. Although cerebellar activation during pain processing has already Daporinad cell line been shown by MEG (Stancak et al., 2011), replication studies are definitely needed to support this post hoc interpretation. In line with our hypothesis, we observed hemispheric asymmetries of affect-specific amplified emotion processing. Source-space analysis revealed significantly increased neural generator activity
evoked by CS+ as compared to CS− between 100 and 150 ms after CS onset in the right prefrontal cortex, suggesting a right-hemispheric preference for aversively conditioned tones. In BGB324 cost the left hemisphere, in contrast, safety-signalling unpaired CS (CS−) evoked relatively stronger source
activity within a parietotemporal neural generator cluster, indicating a role of the left hemisphere in the prioritised processing of appetitive tones. In sensor space, these findings were corroborated by the observation of significantly stronger amplitudes in response to CS− than to CS+ in a left posterior sensor cluster. A source-space analysis delivered clear indications of asymmetries in corresponding left- and right-hemispheric parietotemporal, prefrontal and (presumably) cerebellar neural generator clusters. The current finding of stronger right-lateralised processing of shock-associated tones is in line with previous aversive learning studies which have reported increased activation for both visual and auditory CS+ in the right hemisphere Methane monooxygenase (e.g. Johnsen & Hugdahl, 1993; Hugdahl et al., 1995; Morris et al., 1997; Pizzagalli et al., 2003; Rehbein et al., 2011). Notably, we found preferential processing of safety-signalling unpaired CS in the left hemisphere, which is thought to mediate approach-related behaviour and to support positive affect (Davidson, 1992; Davidson & Irwin, 1999; Harmon-Jones et al., 2010). In a positron emission tomography study, Morris et al. (1998) reported a convergent effect of relatively increased left-hemispheric auditory cortex activity for safety-signalling unpaired relative to aversively conditioned CS+ tones.