Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Correcting emotional misunderstandings: We may make mistakes interpreting the emotions of others, but our brain can corrects us

Date:
October 10, 2013
Source:
Sissa Medialab
Summary:
It so happens that we interpret other people's emotions based on our own and thus sometimes make mistakes. Luckily our brain is equipped with correction devices: scientists in Italy have identified the area where this mechanism should be located.

The projection mechanisms of one's emotions onto others are well known to scientists, who believe they are at the core of the ability to interpret and relate to others. In some circumstances, however, this may lead to gross mistakes.
Credit: Andrey Burmakin / Fotolia

It so happens that we interpret other people's emotions based on our own and thus sometimes make mistakes. Luckily our brain is equipped with correction devices: scientists at the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA), Trieste, have identified the area where this mechanism should be located.

Related Articles


When we are sad the world seemingly cries with us. On the contrary, when we are happy everything shines and all around people's faces seem to rejoice with us. These projection mechanisms of one's emotions onto others are well known to scientists, who believe they are at the core of the ability to interpret and relate to others. In some circumstances, however, this may lead to gross mistakes (called egocentricity bias in the emotional domain EEB), to avoid them cerebral mechanisms are activated about which still little is known.

Giorgia Silani, a neuroscientist at SISSA, in collaborartion with an international group of researchers have identified an area in the brain involved in this process. The results were published in The Journal of Neuroscience.

In their experiments researchers have first measured the likeliness of subjects to make these kinds of mistakes. Then, thanks to functional magnetic resonance imaging, a cerebral area has been identified in which activity is clearly more intense when the subjects are making EEB mistakes.

The responsible area is the right supramarginal gyrus, a relatively unknown location to social neurosciences.

In a third round of experiments researchers have even tried to "sabotage" the activity of this cerebral area, by temporarily shutting it down through transcranial magnetic stimulation, a (harmless) procedure which can shortly silence the electrical activity of neurons. Silani and colleagues observed that during "shutdowns" the subjects made significantly more EEB mistakes than average, thus confirming the crucial role of this cerebral area.

"The results of our study," Silani explains "show for the first time the physiological markers of highly adaptive social mechanisms, such as the ability to suppress our own emotional states in order to correctly evaluate those of others. Future research will allow us to understand how these abilities develop and decay over time, and how we can train them."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. G. Silani, C. Lamm, C. C. Ruff, T. Singer. Right Supramarginal Gyrus Is Crucial to Overcome Emotional Egocentricity Bias in Social Judgments. Journal of Neuroscience, 2013; 33 (39): 15466 DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1488-13.2013

Cite This Page:

Sissa Medialab. "Correcting emotional misunderstandings: We may make mistakes interpreting the emotions of others, but our brain can corrects us." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131010091229.htm>.
Sissa Medialab. (2013, October 10). Correcting emotional misunderstandings: We may make mistakes interpreting the emotions of others, but our brain can corrects us. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131010091229.htm
Sissa Medialab. "Correcting emotional misunderstandings: We may make mistakes interpreting the emotions of others, but our brain can corrects us." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131010091229.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Winter Can Cause Depression — Here's How To Combat It

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Millions of American suffer from seasonal depression every year. It can lead to adverse health effects, but there are ways to ease symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers find that as people approach new decades in their lives they make bigger life decisions. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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