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PSYB65 - Lec 11 (near verbatim).docx

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Ted Petit

Lec 11: PSYB65 Frontal Lobe (but actually means prefrontal area):  History: o It was thought that the front part of the brain was for intellectual function  GALL who proposed phrenology = by looking at ppl who had particular characteristics and then feeling their skull for bumps for where the diff characteristics were localized; thought that intelligence was at the front o Jacobson was the first person to test the theory that was proposed that intelligence is in frontal region; took monkeys and removed anterior portion of frontal lobes (prefrontal area); had a problem in delayed response capacities = ability to perform on delayed response tasks was severely impaired; tested them in apparatus WGTA (Wisconsin General Testing Apparatus) = equivalence of Skinner box for rats  WGTA: on a table, have cups that are marked with raisin/etc underneath; separate monkey from experimenter by glass/curtain; ex) the monkey learns to pick up the raisin from under the red cup but not the yellow cup  If the animals could see the solution to the problem (ie: if they could watch the experimenter put the raisin under the red cup) then react, they were able to solve the problem; however, if there was a delay btn seeing the solution to the problem and actually being able to solve the problem, THEY COULDN’T SOLVE THE PROBLEM  Natural enviro: if you put a monkey in cage and put banana in front of cage just beyond reach, monkey will look around for stick to reach the banana = normal to pull banana towards cage using stick; in monkeys with prefrontal damage, they see banana and they look around for object to reach banana, but by the time they retrieve object, it’s as if they’ve forgotten that there’s a banana and vice versa;  if there was a delay in seeing the problem and seeing the solution to the problem (if objects weren’t side by side), then they couldn’t solve the problem  Jacobson initially thought it may be a problem in immediate memory (short-term memory capacity loss; however, he started testing them in diff kinds of conditions and he figured it wasn’t that simple  In dark or if given tranquilizer = the animals were able to perform task  tried to figure out what the problem really was by eliminating things; this suggested that it wasn’t a problem in memory at all but that maybe it was emotional component like distractibility (if in dark or on sedative, wouldn’t be distracted)  Problems in alternation: test where first, one set of responses is correct and then another set is correct (ex: first the animal has to choose the red cup to nd get a raisin, in 2 trial, animal has to choose yellow cup to get the raisin  Monkey with prefrontal problem could not solve alternations task; normal monkeys can solve this problem fairly quick  Damaged monkey: once learned the first response, they became unable to change their response  became rigid in their behavior patterns; lack plasticity in their ability to change responses o Jacobson: there was a particular monkey that he tested which did not like being tested; the monkey got more upset, neurotic/uptight and would throw tantrums; eventually got to a point where she was throwing tantrums before they could get her into the WGTA; after doing frontal lobotomy, the monkey became tranquil/calm o Jacobson reported results about the monkey testing; how there may be an emotional component in the frontal lobe; also talked about how this particular monkey was especially out of control b4 the surgery but AFTER FRONTAL LOBOTOMY, the monkey became calm  these results were presented at conference which MONIZ attended o Moniz = neurosurgeon = potentially try this on humans who were out of control and had psychiatric disorders? o Moniz tried this on humans  began prefrontal lobotomies in humans o Use letter openers, leukotomes (drive it thru orbit)  they disconnected prefrontal lobe from the rest of the brain; didn’t actually remove it o 20 ppl surgery = all survived; reported 7 of them had recovered, 7 had improved o best results with depressed patients o considered major advancement in psychiatric; whole wave of treating psychiatric patients by prefrontal lobotomy o moniz himself stopped performing lobotomies in 1944 b/c he was shot by one of his lobotomy patients  severed spine  paraplegic o Two other ppl still thought prefrontal lobotomy still a good idea = Freeman and Watts = brought technique to N.America; operated on 3500 patients -Estimated that there were about 40,000 prefrontal lobotomies performed in US (1940s) -problems with prefrontal lobotomy  generate scar tissue  18% developed epilepsy/seizures -continued until 1950’s when drug therapies were developed (ex: antihistamines) so prefrontal surgeries to treat psychiatric disorders declined in 50s and 60s  Prefrontal damage in humans: o IQ = WAIS = normal scores on IQ tests; opposes Gall’s phrenology which stated that frontal lobes = intelligence; turns out that frontal lobes have nothing to do with intelligence o These patients had problems in changing inappropriate behavior; measured by Wisconsin Card Sort Test  has little objects on it that can either vary by color, number or shape; ask the person to sort it however they want; however they sort it the first time, you say is right  do this until they get 10 of them correct; after they get 10 correct, the experimenter has changed the rule by which the patient has to sort but the patient hasn’t been told that the rule has changed; you say it’s wrong and normally it takes a couple tries for the person to realize what the new rule is and to sort according to the new rule; let the person get 10 right again with the new rule and then switch to a new rule o Prefrontal damage patients don’t get that the rules have changed; whatever they started with, they continue with that; once they start doing a particular behavior, these patients lack the flexibility to be able to change when it is inappropriate to continue o What is interesting is that they can solve the problem intellectually: they can tell you but they will continue in the same beh even tho inappropriate o Dissociation between verbal and motor beh: board with green and red light, have 2 buzzers that they can press  tell person ‘when green light comes on, press red button; when red light comes on, press green button’ patient may do the opposite of what was told OR they may keep hitting same button no matter what; but they can verbally tell you clearly what the directions are but they can’t follow it (motorically c
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