||Address: Department of PsychiatryLudwig-Maximilian University of Munich
Nussbaumstr. 7 80336 Munich
Phone: +49 89 4400 55540
Fax: +49 89 44055542
||Address: Department of Psychiatry University of Missouri Kansas City
1000 E. 24th Street Kansas City, MO 64108
United States of America
Phone: +1 816 512 7424
Fax: +1 248 320 3789
||Address: Department of Psychiatry Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine 2-2 D3 Yamadaoka, Suita City Osaka 565-0871
Phone: +81 6 6879 3051
Fax: +81 6 6879 3059
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The activity of the WPA Section on Psychophysiology is aimed to favour the development and dissemination of psychophysiological techniques in the study of neurobiological bases of psychiatric syndromes and to promote the collaboration among different groups actively involved in this research field.
A renewed attention to psychophysiological methods in psychiatric research has been brought about by recent theories proposing that psychopathological phenomena do not result from a dysfunction of one or more brain regions, but from the failure to integrate the activity of different areas involved in cognitive processes. In this perspective, neurobiogical research should tap the dynamics of complex interactions over time among cerebral regions involved in the poorly integrated cognitive processes. The pursuit of this goal reqires the use of techniques with high sensitivity to the smoothest deviation in complex and integrated processes that last fractions of seconds. Techniques with these characteristics might also contribute to our understanding of psychotropic drugs effects on the central nervous system. It is increasingly acknowledged that psychotropic drugs act modifying the connectivity within largely distributed cortico-subcortical neural circuits. Therefore, brain imaging studies on receptor occupancy or modifications of cerebral blood flow or metabolism should be complemented by psychophysiological indices of integrated brain processes.