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A hedonism hub in the human brain

Zacharopoulos, George, Lancaster, Thomas, Bracht, Tobias, Ihssen, Niklas, Maio, Gregory and Linden, David Edmund Johannes 2016. A hedonism hub in the human brain. Cerebral Cortex 26 (10) , pp. 3921-3927. 10.1093/cercor/bhw197

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Abstract

Human values are abstract ideals that motivate behavior. The motivational nature of human values raises the possibility that they might be underpinned by brain structures that are particularly involved in motivated behavior and reward processing. We hypothesized that variation in subcortical hubs of the reward system and their main connecting pathway, the supero-lateral medial forebrain bundle (slMFB) is associated with individual value orientation. We conducted Pearson’s correlation between the scores of 10 human values and the volumes of 14 subcortical structures and microstructural properties of the medial forebrain bundle in a sample of 87 participants, correcting for multiple comparisons (i.e.,190). We found a positive association between the value that people attach to hedonism and the volume of the left globus pallidus (GP).We then tested whether microstructural parameters (i.e., Fractional Anisotropy and Myelin Volume Fraction) of the slMFB, which connects with the GP, are also associated to hedonism and found a significant, albeit in an uncorrected level, positive association between the myelin volume fraction within the left slMFB and hedonism scores. This is the first study to elucidate the relationship between the importance people attach to the human value of hedonism and structural variation in reward-related subcortical brain regions.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Medicine
Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 1047-3211
Funders: Medical Research Council (MRC), MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2018 18:20
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/91248

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