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Dorsal anterior cingulate cortex shows fMRI response to internal and external error signals


In our event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) experiment, participants learned to select between two response options by trial-and-error, using feedback stimuli that indicated monetary gains and losses. The results of the experiment indicate that error responses and error feedback activate the same region of dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, suggesting that this region is sensitive to both internal and external sources of error information.

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Figure 1: Sensitivity of dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) to both internal and external sources of error information.
Figure 2: Event-related averages associated with dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC).


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The authors thank P. Hu, J. Aronson, P. Hutter, M. Richter and A. Engell for technical assistance. This research was supported by National Institute of Mental Health grant MH064445 and postdoctoral fellowship MH63550. The research of S. Nieuwenhuis was supported by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research.

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Correspondence to Clay B Holroyd.

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Holroyd, C., Nieuwenhuis, S., Yeung, N. et al. Dorsal anterior cingulate cortex shows fMRI response to internal and external error signals. Nat Neurosci 7, 497–498 (2004).

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