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Prefrontal Control in Depression: Fickle Friend or Begrudged Enemy?

[Speaker] Siegle, Greg J:1
1:University of Pittsburgh (United States of America)

Considerable evidence supports the idea of decreased prefrontal reactivity to emotional stimuli in depression, yielding poor cognitive control in emotional situations. Thus prefrontal reactivity is suggested as a treatment target. Here, in a series of neuroimaging and psychophysiological studies, we show that decreased prefrontal control is reliably associated with cognitive features of depression such as rumination, and can be remediated through targeted exercises, yielding clinical change. But, overall increased prefrontal control may be associated with poorer response to some psychological treatments, and may interfere with processing of positive information. We thus suggest that flexible use of prefrontal control may be an important skill.
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