Original Research ARTICLE

Front. Psychiatry, 22 November 2010 | http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2010.00140

Personality goes a long a way: an interhemispheric connectivity study

  • 1 Department of Experimental Psychology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • 2 Schizophrenia Program, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, ON, Canada
  • 3 Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre, The Alfred and Monash University School of Psychology and Psychiatry, Melbourne, VIC, Australia

Throughout the development of psychology the delineation of personality has played a central role. Together with the NEO-PI-R, a questionnaire derived from the Five Factor Model of Personality, and recent advances in research technology it is now possible to investigate the relationship between personality features and neurophysiological brain processes. The NEO-FFI, the short version of the NEO-PI-R, reliably measures five main personality traits: Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness to experience, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness. As behavior and some psychiatric disorders have been related to interhemispheric connectivity, the present study used the combination of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and electroencephalography (EEG) to measure frontal interhemispheric connectivity and its association with personality as indexed by the NEO-FFI. Results demonstrated that prefrontal interhemispheric connectivity between the left and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex correlates with Agreeableness in healthy subjects. This is the first study to relate personality features to interhemispheric connectivity through TMS–EEG and suggests that Agreeableness relates to the effectiveness of prefrontal communication between hemispheres.

Keywords: transcranial magnetic stimulation, electroencephalography, interhemispheric connectivity, NEO-PI-R, agreeableness

Citation: Hoppenbrouwers SS, Farzan F, Barr MS, Voineskos AN, Schutter DJLG, Fitzgerald PB and Daskalakis ZJ (2010) Personality goes a long a way: an interhemispheric connectivity study. Front. Psychiatry 1:140. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2010.00140

Received: 08 August 2010; Accepted: 26 September 2010;
Published online: 22 November 2010.

Edited by:

Ziad Nahas, Medical University of South Carolina, USA

Reviewed by:

Malek Bajbouj, Charité, Germany
Paul Croarkin, UT Southwestern Medical Center, USA

Copyright: © 2010 Hoppenbrouwers, Farzan, Barr, Voineskos, Schutter, Fitzgerald and Daskalakis. This is an open-access article subject to an exclusive license agreement between the authors and the Frontiers Research Foundation, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original authors and source are credited.

*Correspondence: Zafiris J. Daskalakis, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, 250 College Street, Toronto, ON, Canada. e-mail: jeff_daskalakis@camh.net