Clin Psychopharmacol Neurosci.  2014 Dec;12(3):189-195. 10.9758/cpn.2014.12.3.189.

Are Auditory Hallucinations Related to the Brain's Resting State Activity? A 'Neurophenomenal Resting State Hypothesis'

Affiliations
  • 1Institute of Mental Health Research, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada. georg.northoff@theroyal.ca
  • 2Taipei Medical University, Graduate Institute of Humanities in Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • 3Taipei Medical University-Shuang Ho Hospital, Brain and Consciousness Research Center, New Taipei City, Taiwan.
  • 4National Chengchi University, Research Center for Mind, Brain and Learning, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • 5National Chengchi University, Department of Psychology, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • 6Centre for Cognition and Brain Disorders (CBBD), Normal University Hangzhou, Hangzhou, China.

Abstract

While several hypotheses about the neural mechanisms underlying auditory verbal hallucinations (AVH) have been suggested, the exact role of the recently highlighted intrinsic resting state activity of the brain remains unclear. Based on recent findings, we therefore developed what we call the 'resting state hypotheses' of AVH. Our hypothesis suggest that AVH may be traced back to abnormally elevated resting state activity in auditory cortex itself, abnormal modulation of the auditory cortex by anterior cortical midline regions as part of the default-mode network, and neural confusion between auditory cortical resting state changes and stimulus-induced activity. We discuss evidence in favour of our 'resting state hypothesis' and show its correspondence with phenomenal, i.e., subjective-experiential features as explored in phenomenological accounts. Therefore I speak of a 'neurophenomenal resting state hypothesis' of auditory hallucinations in schizophrenia.

Keyword

Hallucinations, Schizophrenia; Intrinsic activity; Auditory cortex
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