The narcissistic self and its psychological and neural correlates: An exploratory fMRI study

Y. Fan, C. Wonneberger, B. Enzi, M. De Greck, C. Ulrich, C. Tempelmann, B. Bogerts, S. Doering, G. Northoff

研究成果: 雜誌貢獻文章同行評審

64 引文 斯高帕斯(Scopus)

摘要

Background The concept of narcissism has been much researched in psychoanalysis and especially in self psychology. One of the hallmarks of narcissism is altered emotion, including decreased affective resonance (e.g. empathy) with others, the neural underpinnings of which remain unclear. The aim of our exploratory study was to investigate the psychological and neural correlates of empathy in two groups of healthy subjects with high and low narcissistic personality trait. We hypothesized that high narcissistic subjects would show a differential activity pattern in regions such as the anterior insula that are typically associated with empathy.Method A sample of 34 non-clinical subjects was divided into high (n=11) and low (n=11) narcissistic groups according to the 66th and 33rd percentiles of their scores on the Narcissism Inventory (NI). Combining the psychological, behavioral and neuronal [i.e. functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)] measurements of empathy, we compared the high and low narcissistic groups of subjects.Results High narcissistic subjects showed higher scores on the Symptom Checklist-90 â€" Revised (SCL-90-R) and the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) when compared to low narcissistic subjects. High narcissistic subjects also showed significantly decreased deactivation during empathy, especially in the right anterior insula.Conclusions Psychological and neuroimaging data indicate respectively higher degrees of alexithymia and lower deactivation during empathy in the insula in high narcissistic subjects. Taken together, our preliminary findings demonstrate, for the first time, psychological and neuronal correlates of narcissism in non-clinical subjects. This might stipulate both novel psychodynamic conceptualization and future psychological†"neuronal investigation of narcissism.
原文英語
頁(從 - 到)1641-1650
頁數10
期刊Psychological Medicine
41
發行號8
DOIs
出版狀態已發佈 - 八月 2011
對外發佈Yes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Applied Psychology

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