Altered neural signatures of interoception in multiple sclerosis.

Author: Salamone PC1,2, Esteves S1, Sinay VJ1, García-Cordero I1,2, Abrevaya S1,2, Couto B1, Adolfi F1,2, Martorell M1, Petroni A1,2,3,4, Yoris A1,2, Torquati K1, Alifano F1, Legaz A1, Cassará FP1, Bruno D1, Kemp AH5, Herrera E6, García AM1,2,7, Ibáñez A1,2,8,9,10,11, Sedeño L1,2
Affiliation: <sup>1</sup>Laboratory of Experimental Psychology and Neuroscience (LPEN), Institute of Cognitive and Translational Neuroscience (INCYT), INECO Foundation, Favaloro University, Buenos Aires, Argentina. <sup>2</sup>National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), Buenos Aires, Argentina. <sup>3</sup>Institute of Biomedical Engineering, Buenos Aires University, Argentina. <sup>4</sup>Applied Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Computer Science Department, Buenos Aires University. ICC-CONICET, Argentina. <sup>5</sup>School of Psychology and Discipline of Psychiatry, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. <sup>6</sup>Department of Psychological Studies, ICESI University, Cali, Colombia. <sup>7</sup>Faculty of Education, National University of Cuyo (UNCuyo), Centro Universitario, Mendoza, Argentina. <sup>8</sup>Neuroscience Research Australia, Sydney, Australia and School of Medical Sciences, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. <sup>9</sup>Australian Research Council (ACR) Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. <sup>10</sup>Universidad Autónoma del Caribe, Barranquilla, Colombia. <sup>11</sup>Department of Psychology, Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, Santiago, Chile.
Conference/Journal: Hum Brain Mapp.
Date published: 2018 Aug 4
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1002/hbm.24319. [Epub ahead of print] , Word Count: 260

Multiple sclerosis (MS) patients present several alterations related to sensing of bodily signals. However, no specific neurocognitive impairment has yet been proposed as a core deficit underlying such symptoms. We aimed to determine whether MS patients present changes in interoception-that is, the monitoring of autonomic bodily information-a process that might be related to various bodily dysfunctions. We performed two studies in 34 relapsing-remitting, early-stage MS patients and 46 controls matched for gender, age, and education. In Study 1, we evaluated the heartbeat-evoked potential (HEP), a cortical signature of interoception, via a 128-channel EEG system during a heartbeat detection task including an exteroceptive and an interoceptive condition. Then, we obtained whole-brain MRI recordings. In Study 2, participants underwent fMRI recordings during two resting-state conditions: mind wandering and interoception. In Study 1, controls exhibited greater HEP modulation during the interoceptive condition than the exteroceptive one, but no systematic differences between conditions emerged in MS patients. Patients presented atrophy in the left insula, the posterior part of the right insula, and the right anterior cingulate cortex, with abnormal associations between neurophysiological and neuroanatomical patterns. In Study 2, controls showed higher functional connectivity and degree for the interoceptive state compared with mind wandering; however, this pattern was absent in patients, who nonetheless presented greater connectivity and degree than controls during mind wandering. MS patients were characterized by atypical multimodal brain signatures of interoception. This finding opens a new agenda to examine the role of inner-signal monitoring in the body symptomatology of MS.

KEYWORDS: body perception; functional connectivity; heartbeat detection task; heartbeat evoked potential; interoceptive processing; multiple sclerosis

PMID: 30076770 DOI: 10.1002/hbm.24319