NSCI 201 Chapter Notes - Chapter 29: Basal Ganglia, Limbic System, Reticular Formation

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NSCI 201 (22.29)
Emotions
7th April 2016
Emotions!
!Again, emotions are tied to visceral nervous system, similar to fight/flight— more
sympathetic, arousing. Most emotions create behavioural acting plans, and change both our
physiology and cognitive ability. Our own subjective experiences of emotions are difficult to
study. !
!
Facial expressions!
Experiment: Stimulations causing contractions in muscle groups. When smile was induced
through stimulations, patient reported happy feelings. Question arises: Are emotions caused by
facial expressions, or vice versa? Seems to be both, smiling in particular. Does not apply to fear.!
!
Emotions may be modulated through feedback from periphery. People with higher spinal cord
damage may report dulled emotions. !
!
!
Pyramidal and extrapyramidal contributions!
!!
The production of facial expressions goes through
two separate pathways: voluntary and involuntary.!
!
!
Thus, two forms of paresis. !
!
Voluntary facial paresis: cannot produce voluntary
smile, but can smile involuntarily.!
!
Emotional facial paresis: can voluntarily control facial
expressions, cannot smile involuntarily. !
!
Same motor neurons can be getting input from
different drive centers in the cortex. !
!
!
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NSCI 201 (22.29)
Emotions
7th April 2016
!
Pyramidal/ extrapyramidal contributions (Cont’d)!
!
!
!
Brain regions sufficient for the expression of emotional behaviour!
!
A phenomenon called ‘sham rage’ can occur if large regions of a rat’s brain are removed (cortex,
basal ganglia, etc. except for midbrain, brainstem, dorsal part of hypothalamus). Rats can
display angry behaviour with all relevant physiological changes, even when lacking a cortex. !
!
So, we know that the important regions capable of producing anger are in hypothalamus,
midbrain, and medulla. !
!
Recall: reticular formation goes along brainstem. This also seems to be important— has
hypothalamic connections. !
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NSCI 201 (22.29)
Emotions
7th April 2016
!
Descending systems that control visceral and somatic motor effectors in the expression
of emotion!
Same flowchart, expanded— two separate systems from volitional and emotional bases.!
!
As in motor control, we have separate descending input controlling medial and lateral structures.
Parallels seen here: Medial motor projections controlled volitional adjustments, medial effectors
in emotion control change sensitivity to stimuli, lateral is more specific, produces actual changes.!
!
The limbic lobe!
Classic idea: limbic lobe, ’rim’ around midbrain and corpus callosum. Limbic system is a newer
idea, more accurately reflecting its function.!
!
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