Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Part of brain that suppresses instinct identified

Date:
December 26, 2010
Source:
York University
Summary:
New research is revealing which regions in the brain fire up when we suppress an automatic behavior such as the urge to look at other people in an elevator. Researchers showed -- for the first time -- an increase in signal from the left inferior frontal cortex when study participants were confronted by a conflict between an image and a word superimposed on the image.

Research from York University is revealing which regions in the brain "fire up" when we suppress an automatic behaviour such as the urge to look at other people as we enter an elevator.

A York study, published recently in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, used fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) to track brain activity when study participants looked at an image of a facial expression with a word superimposed on it. Study participants processed the words faster than the facial expressions. However, when the word did not match the image -- for example, when the word "sad" was superimposed on an image of someone smiling − participants reacted less quickly to a request to read the word.

"The emotion in the word doesn't match the emotion in the facial expression, which creates a conflict," said Joseph DeSouza, assistant professor of psychology in York's Faculty of Health. "Our study showed − for the first time − an increase in signal from the left inferior frontal cortex when the study participant was confronted by this conflict between the word and the image and asked to respond to directions that went against their automatic instincts."

Previous research on the prefrontal cortex has found this region to be implicated in higher order cognitive functions including longterm planning, response suppression and response selection. This experiment, conducted by graduate student Shima Ovaysikia under DeSouza's supervision, allowed researchers to study inhibitory mechanisms for much more complex stimuli than have been studied in the past.

The inferior frontal cortex is located near the front left temple. People who have problems with inhibition, including stroke or schizophrenia patients, may have damage to this inferior frontal cortex zone, says DeSouza. As a result, when they see something that is inconsistent -- such as the image of a smiling face with the word "sad" across it -- they would be expected to take more time to react, because the part of their brains needed to process it has been damaged or destroyed.

The research, conducted by York's Centre for Vision Research with the use of fMRI technology at Queen's University, was partially funded by the Faculty of Health at York University, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and Research at York (RAY) program.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by York University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Shima Ovaysikia, Jason L. Chan, Khalid Tahir and Joseph F. Desouza. Word wins over Face: Emotional Stroop effect activates the frontal cortical network. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, (in press) [link]

Cite This Page:

York University. "Part of brain that suppresses instinct identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 December 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101222112112.htm>.
York University. (2010, December 26). Part of brain that suppresses instinct identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101222112112.htm
York University. "Part of brain that suppresses instinct identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101222112112.htm (accessed August 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) An experimental drug used to treat Marburg virus in rhesus monkeys could give new insight into a similar treatment for Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two US Ebola Patients Leave Hospital Free of the Disease

Two US Ebola Patients Leave Hospital Free of the Disease

AFP (Aug. 21, 2014) Two American missionaries who were sickened with Ebola while working in Liberia and were treated with an experimental drug are doing better and have left the hospital, doctors say on August 21, 2014. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) Contains graphic content. He's only 17. But Johntrell Bowles has wanted to be a doctor from a young age, despite the odds against him. He was recently the youngest participant in a cadaver program at the Indiana University NW medical school. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) It's unclear whether the American Ebola patients' recoveries can be attributed to an experimental drug or early detection and good medical care. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins