Involvement of Insula and Cingulate Cortices in Control and Suppression of Natural Urges


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Abstract

The physiology of control and suppression of natural urges is not well understood. We used [15O]H2O positron-emission tomography imaging to identify neural circuits involved in suppression of spontaneous blinking as a model of normal urges. Suppression of blinking was associated with prominent activation of bilateral insular-claustrum regions, right more than left; activation was also found in bilateral anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), supplementary motor areas, and the face area of the primary motor cortex bilaterally. These results suggest a central role for the insula possibly together with ACC in suppression of blinking.

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