The neural correlates of emotion-based cognitive control in adults with early childhood behavioral inhibition

Johanna M. Jarcho, Nathan A. Fox, Daniel S. Pine, Amit Etkin, Ellen Leibenluft, Tomer Shechner, Monique Ernst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study is the first to assess whether the neural correlates of cognitive control processes differ in adults with and without a behaviorally inhibited temperament during early childhood. Adults with and without childhood behavioral inhibition completed an emotional conflict task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging scanning. While no group differences in behavior were observed, adults with childhood behavioral inhibition, relative to adults without childhood behavioral inhibition, exhibited greater dorsomedial prefrontal cortex activity during conflict detection and greater putamen activity during conflict adaptation. Lifetime psychopathology predicted behavioral, but not brain-related, differences in conflict adaptation. These data suggest that the brain regions underlying cognitive control processes are differentially influenced by childhood behavioral inhibition, and may be differently related to psychopathology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-314
Number of pages9
JournalBiological Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute of Health , and grants from the National Institute of Mental Health Grant (NAF: R01 MH 074454 ) and the National Institute of Child Health and Development Grant (NAF: 5R37 HD 017899-20 ).


  • Behavioral inhibition
  • Conflict adaptation
  • Conflict detection
  • Development
  • Emotion regulation
  • FMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • General Neuroscience


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