An fMRI video animation time-course analysis of brain regions activated during self-stimulation to orgasm in women
Monday, Nov 14, 2011, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
*B. R. KOMISARUK
, N. WISE, E. FRANGOS, W. BIRBANO, K. ALLEN;
Dept Psychology, Rutgers, The State Univ. of New Jersey, NEWARK, NJ
In an fMRI analysis of genital stimulation-induced orgasm, we reported the following sequential activation of multiple brain regions: genital sensory cortex (paracentral lobule) then limbic system regions (insula, anterior cingulate, amygdala, hippocampus) then prefrontal cortex and cerebellum then hypothalamus and nucleus accumbens, followed after orgasm by an overall reduction in activity of all these brain regions. That preliminary analysis was based upon continuous fMRI recording, in which we created regions of interest (ROIs) based on Brodmann’s areas, and represented the activity in each of 80 brain regions (40 on each laterality) as a rising or falling line graph over time (Komisaruk et al, SFN, 285.6, 2010). A more precise insight into the sequence of activation of these brain regions can be gained through dynamic visualization in the form of an animation video that utilizes the same form of data. Consequently, in the present analysis, we have represented the activity of each of 80 Brodmann Area ROIs in its “hot metal” analog, with 10 gradation levels progressing through red, orange, yellow to white. This color code is then applied to each ROI for each 2-sec period during the course of genital self-stimulation before, during, and after orgasm. This is represented in non-dynamic form as the matrix below (a representation of one woman’s orgasm, which is similar to others’), in which each column is an ROI and each row starting from the top down is a 2-sec period. Inspection of the matrix reveals: a) non-uniform sequence of activation of different brain regions leading up to orgasm, b) greater activation in the right hemisphere than the left, c) widespread activation of the brain at orgasm, and d) substantial reduction in brain activity after orgasm. Our analytic animation method utilizes a recurrent loop video. It facilitates an understanding of the interaction and sequential activation of the brain components underlying the gradual development of genital stimulation-induced orgasm.
NIH 2R25 GM060826
Support: NIH 2R25 GM060826 and the Rutgers University Research Fund.
[Authors]. [Abstract Title]. Program No. XXX.XX. 2011 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. Washington, DC: Society for Neuroscience, 2011. Online.
2011 Copyright by the Society for Neuroscience all rights reserved. Permission to republish any abstract or part of any abstract in any form must be obtained in writing by SfN office prior to publication.
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