Neural Control of Vascular Reactions: Impact of Emotion and Attention Hadas Okon-Singer, Jan Mehnert, Jana Hoyer, Lydia Hellrung, Herma Lina Schaare, Juergen Dukart and Arno Villringer Journal of Neuroscience 19 March 2014, 34 (12) 4251-4259; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0747-13.2014 ABSTRACT This study investigated the neural regions involved in blood pressure reactions to negative stimuli and their possible modulation by attention. Twenty-four healthy human subjects (11 females; age = 24.75 ± 2.49 years) participated in an affective perceptual load task that manipulated attention to negative/neutral distractor pictures. fMRI data were collected simultaneously with continuous recording of peripheral arterial blood pressure（CareTaker 、Emperical Technologies）;. A parametric modulation analysis examined the impact of attention and emotion on the relation between neural activation and blood pressure reactivity during the task. When attention was available for processing the distractor pictures, negative pictures resulted in behavioral interference, neural activation in brain regions previously related to emotion, a transient decrease of blood pressure, and a positive correlation between blood pressure response and activation in a network including prefrontal and parietal regions, the amygdala, caudate, and mid-brain. These effects were modulated by attention; behavioral and neural responses to highly negative distractor pictures (compared with neutral pictures) were smaller or diminished, as was the negative blood pressure response when the central task involved high perceptual load. Furthermore, comparing high and low load revealed enhanced activation in frontoparietal regions implicated in attention control. Our results fit theories emphasizing the role of attention in the control of behavioral and neural reactions to irrelevant emotional distracting information. Our findings furthermore extend the function of attention to the control of autonomous reactions associated with negative emotions by showing altered blood pressure reactions to emotional stimuli, the latter being of potential clinical relevance.
Comparisons of microvascular and macrovascular changes in aldosteronism-related hypertension and essential hypertension Monica Varano, Pierluigi Iacono, Massimiliano M. Tedeschi, Claudio Letizia, Mario Curione, Claudio Savoriti, Erika Baiocco, Laura Zinnamosca, Cristiano Marinelli, Barbara Boccassini Mariacristina Parravano Abstract Case-control observational study to evaluate the microvascular and macrovascular changes in patients with hypertension secondary to primary aldosteronism (PA), essential hypertension (EH) and healthy subjects. Measurements of arterial stiffness including augmentation index (AIx) and pulse wave velocity (PWV) were assessed using a TensioClinic arteriograph system. Retinal microcirculation was imaged by a Retinal Vessel Analyzer (RVA) and a non-midriatic camera (Topcon-TRC-NV2000). IMEDOS software analyzed the retinal artery diameter (RAD), retinal vein diameters (RVD) and arteriole-to-venule ratio (AVR) of the vessels coming off the optic disc. Thirty, 39 and 35 patients were included in the PA, EH and control group, respectively. The PA group showed higher PWV values compared only with the control group. The mean brachial and aortic AIx values did not show significant difference between groups. In the PA group, the mean RVD and AVR values were significantly lower than in the EH and control groups, whereas the parameters did not differ between the EH and control groups. In conclusion, AVR appears significantly modified in the PA group compared with the EH group and could represent an early and more reliable indicator of microvascular remodeling.
Arterial stiffness estimation in healthy subjects: a validation of oscillometric (Arteriograph) and tonometric (SphygmoCor) techniques Open Margareta Ring1,2, Maria Jolanta Eriksson1,2, Juleen Rae Zierath3 and Kenneth Caidahl1,2 1Section of Clinical Physiology, Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden 2Department of Clinical Physiology, Karolinska University Hospital, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden 3Section of Integrative Physiology, Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden Correspondence: M Ring, Department of Clinical Physiology, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska University Hospital N2:01, Solna, 171 76 Stockholm, Sweden. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Received 27 December 2013; Revised 29 May 2014; Accepted 6 June 2014 Advance online publication 24 July 2014 Topof page Abstract Arterial stiffness is an important cardiovascular risk marker, which can be measured noninvasively with different techniques. To validate such techniques in healthy subjects, we compared the recently introduced oscillometric Arteriograph (AG) technique with the tonometric SphygmoCor (SC) method and their associations with carotid ultrasound measures and traditional risk indicators. Sixty-three healthy subjects aged 20–69 (mean 48±15) years were included. We measured aortic pulse wave velocity (PWVao) and augmentation index (AIx) by AG and SC, and with SC also the PWVao standardized to 80% of the direct distance between carotid and femoral sites (St-PWVaoSC). The carotid strain, stiffness index and intima–media thickness (cIMTmean) were evaluated by ultrasound. PWVaoAG (8.00±2.16 m s−1) was higher (P<0.001) than PWVaoSC (6.87±1.47 m s−1), but did not differ from St-PWVaoSC (7.68±1.58 m s−1), and correlated (P<0.001) with both (r=0.54 and 0.59). St-PWVaoSC was significantly (P<0.01) higher than PWVaoAG for values below median (7.4 m s−1). PWVao by SC and AG differed significantly in females (P<0.001), but not in males (P=0.40). AIxaoAG (27.5±14.5%) was higher (P<0.001) than AIxaoSC (20.5±17.4%), but related closely (r=0.97, P<0.001). St-PWVaoSC, PWVao and AIxao by SC, and PWVao and AIxao by AG were all related to serum cholesterol and to cIMTmean (P<0.001). Arterial stiffness indices by AG and SC correlate with vascular risk markers in healthy subjects. AIxao results by AG and SC are closely interrelated, but higher values are obtained by AG. In the lower range, PWVao values by AG and SC are similar, but differ for higher values. Our results imply the necessity to apply one and the same technique for repeated studies.