The relationship between the size of a brain structure and the ability to recover from traumatic experiences also may influence overall personality type, according to a study from Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) researchers. In a followup to earlier findings that an area of the brain called the medial orbitofrontal cortex (mOFC) appears thicker in those who can better control their emotional response to unpleasant memories, the investigators found that study participants who exhibited better fear inhibition also score higher in measures of extraversion – an energetic, outgoing personality. The report appears in the Nov. 28 issue of NeuroReport.
"Some studies have demonstrated links between extraversion or the trait of neuroticism and the overall activity of brain regions that include the mOFC. But this is the first time anyone has looked at the potential relation of both brain structure and fear extinction to personality traits," says Mohammed Milad, PhD, of the MGH Department of Psychiatry, a co-lead author of the study.
Most individuals initially respond with physical and emotional distress to situations that bring back memories of traumatic events, but such responses usually diminish over time, as the situations are repeated without unpleasant occurrences. The ability to suppress those negative responses is called "extinction memory," and its deficiency may lead to anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder. In their previous study, the MGH team focused on the ventromedial prefrontal cortex – an area on the lower surface of the brain that includes the mOFC and is believed to inhibit the activity of the amygdala, a structure known to be involved with fear. The current report combined the data analyzed in that study – published in the July 26, 2005, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science – with the results from a standard personality test. Since earlier research has associated levels of extraversion and neuroticism – oversensitivity and emotional instability – with vulnerability to anxiety disorders, the current experiment focused on those traits.
Sue McGreevey | EurekAlert!
Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT
Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont
Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.
Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
09.12.2016 | Life Sciences
09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine