- Sleeping sickness (encephalitis lethargic) virus that attacked striatal regions of brain.
People were emotionless, like zombies. But i-dopa became a cure and people started to
act spontaneously and had mood swings, excitements and other emotional effects.
Example of how brain regions and neurotransmitters are involved with emotion
- Neuroimaging: machine that monitors biochemical events in a series of conceptual
slices through a person’s brain. Computer takes this information and constructs visual
images of the brain to show which regions have been metabolically active
o Positron emission tomography (PET)
o fMRI (movie pictures, changing activity
o and also look at effects of accidental damage or lesions in animals, stimulate
electrically, pharmacologically, electrical recording etc
- hindbrain – physiological
- cerebellum-motor movement
- thalamus- sensory
- hypothalamus – eating, sex, aggression, body temperature
- limbic system- including amygdale makes us different from other species
- frontal lobes- planning and intentional action, emotional regulation
- Descartes- sensory is strings being pulled opening valves for fluids
o But actually electric and chem. Signals. Same framework
o But emotions more complex.
Early research on brain lesions and stimulation
- Bard- cats deprived of cortex make inappropriate sudden attacks. Sham rage.
o But can live long
- Cortex inhibits sham rage.
- Hess and Brugger lesions/electrical stimulation = angry behaviour from hypothalamus.
- Cannon and Bard- lower levels of the brain/hind brain are reflex pathways related to
simple functions like posture and movement. Next are evolved, and highest evolve
controls all levels below
o Children who can’t control emotion is because cortex not developed to inhibit
o Eg. Phineas gage.
- Papez- thalamus plsits into 3 streams
o striatal (movement), neocortex (thought), limbic system/hypothalamus (feeling) o Maclean elaborated - Forebrain 3 systems:
Reptilian: stratial/movement/generating basic behaviours. Eg. Marking,
patrolling, hunting, greeting, grooming.
Damage (huntingdon’s chorea) unable to organize daily
Paleomamillian: /limbic system/social.
Link with hypothalamus- controls ANS with pituitary gland
Neomamilian: neocortex/inhibits primitive behaviours
- Kluber and Bucy: wild monkeys amygdale removed no fear
- Olds and Milner: rats not hungry or thirsty when electrode tips into septal aprts of
limbic systems. Pleasureable part of brain
- Glickamn: activation pleasurable or unpleasurable when it is to approach or withdraw.
Good mood = approach, bad mood = avoid
- Epilepsy- nerve cells all fire in a self-sustaining pattern. In temporal lobe epilepsy it
happens in limbic region and leads to strong emotions.
- Maclean-Panksepp conjecture: experience of emotions is generated in the limbic system
and that each distinct emotion type is based on a particular system of limbic brain
o Emotion action
- We are like other mammals. Even though we have enhanced modes of emotional
relatedness like language, we have primitive feelings and can’t be cognitively controlled.
- PET has shown that brain activation increases with emotions when asked to recall
experiences for each emotion. all subcortical activation, especially limbic system. Cortex
activity even decreased
- Emotional computer- appraisal mechanism for emotions
o receives from cortex/visual recognition and recognition of sounds.
o Also connected to hypothalamus.
o Amygdale receives visual/auditory inputs through thalamus
- Pavlovian conditioning is emotion about what is important. Readiness for pleasant or
o Negative stimuli quick to learn, slow to extinguish
- Rats conditioned as long as amygdale and thalamus present, even if cortex removed
o Thus, emotional learning can still occur. Amygdale is core of central network of
- Amygdale-primary appraisal. Automatic evalutation of events in relation to goals and
concerns. Assigns emotional significance.
- Amygdale increase activation in response to emotionally evocative stimuli (eg. Sad,
disturbing films, unpleasant tasts and odors, etc)
- Fear faces and sad faces activate left amygdale (and right temporal lobe) - Fmri studies found people have more activity in amygdale for longer for faces of other
ethnic groups. They remain threat but not same ethnic group
- Depressive biopolar = enlarged amygdales or higher activation.
- Recalling negative stimuli correlatied with activation in amygdale and insula (eg.
Recalling gorey pictures)
- Amygdale not involved in experience of emotions. Damage does not impair expression
- Could be what evaluates fear but others say it’s whole limbic system together
- Also called neocortex. Largest development. 80% of brain.
- Inhibits primitive behaviours of lower regions.
- Frontal lobes as regulation and executive control.
- Has 3 areas: orbitofrontal, dorsolateral prefrontal and anterior cingulated/medial frontal
- Connections with amygdale and mucleus accumbens: involved in wanting and liking
- Orbitofrontal cortex involved with representation of goals and rewards,
- Evidence of role in regulation:
o Damage to orbifrontal cortex = problems regulating emotional behaviour.
Behaviourally inappropriate. Difficulty empathizing with others and judging
o Imaging studies show regions of prefrontal activated when try to inhibit
emotional responses to evocative stimuli. (eg. Reaprassing negative emotion)
- Right brain damage: paralysis on left and unable to recognize emotions
- Left brain damage: paralysis on right and language impairment
- Right side = processing emotional events. Eg. Chimeric faces
- Recognition of emotional expressions is better for faces in left visual field (when shown
pics of faces flashing)
- Damage to left cortex better than damage to right in recognizing liars (through facial
- Right brain superiority recognizes facial expressio