Amygdala<br />What is it? Where is it? How does it effect us?<br />
What is it?<br />Processing of Memory and emotional reactions. <br />Detailed: the connection of the amygdala to various centers of the brain such as the neocortex and visual cortex through several nerves.<br />Forms part of the limbic system, which is an important part of the nervous system. <br />
Located with ones person's mental and emotional state.</li></li></ul><li>Linked with emotion!<br />The amygdala interacts with the a persons emotional memory and mental state!<br />Due to strong emotional context involved: Fear and pleasure is linked with the functioning of the amygdala. <br />Memories derived by fear, are memories typically stored in BY the amygdala due to the event being traumatic. <br />Anger<br />Sad<br />Fear<br />Love <br />Happy<br />Envy<br />Jealous<br />Amygdala: The Bank of Emotions!<br />
Fear as a Triggered Response <br /> Fear is a triggered response from a traumatic experience (i.e. car accident or abuse) that humans would not want to re- experience . <br />University of Queensland (2008, October 29). New Understanding Of How We Remember Traumatic Events. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 4, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2008/10/081028103111.htm <br />
And She Had NO Fear! Literally!!!!!<br />University of Iowa: Feinstein et al. (2010): A Girl without an Amygdala <br />“Without our amygdala, the alarm in our brain that pushes us to avoid danger is missing” ~Feinstein<br />She does NOT have an amygdala, and other areas of the brain (i.e. bed Nuclei) were unable to compensate. <br />The participant felt no emotion<br />
Fearless!<br />Exposed the Participant to<br /> snakes & spiders<br />visited one of the world’s scariest haunted houses<br />watched a series of horror films.<br />Rate her fear level by<br />Questionnaires<br />Emotional diary she kept<br />In the End, she literally felt nothing. <br />Amygdala????<br />
Fear & Traumatic Events: University of Queensland, 2008<br />traumatic experience (i.e. car accident or abuse) triggered response fear<br /><ul><li>Emotional events may lead to disturbing long term memories.
Stronger Memories are formed when there is an emotional attachment; i.e. fear.
Found that the formation of emotional memories is from a underlying cellular mechanism and a stress hormone.
Noradrenaline (the brain’s adrenaline) affects the amygdala because it controls chemical & electrical pathways in the brain responsible for memory formation.</li></ul>University of Queensland (2008, October 29). New Understanding Of How We Remember Traumatic Events. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 4, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081028103111.htm <br />
When damaged…<br />Can result in problems such as Anxiety, Depression, ADHD.<br />Thus emotional processing changes. <br />Problematic:<br />Volume<br />Large: Bi-polar disease: gripped by much fear<br />Smaller : ADHD<br />Over stimulated: Anxiety, panic disorder. <br />
Dysfunction: Other Areas of the Brain May Compensate<br />Michael Fanselow, University of California - Los Angeles Brain Research Institute (2010, August 3) Study: <br />Findings: when the amygdala is not available, the region of the brain known as the bed nuclei can compensate for the loss of the amygdala<br />Bed Nuclei <br />can compensate <br />Slower at learning<br />form memories only when the amygdala is not learning<br />If there is no amygdala, and you have an emotional experience, it is like neural plasticity (the memory-forming ability of brain cells) and the bed nuclei spring into action. <br />This happens because the amygdala sends a signal to the bed nuclei saying, that the amygdala is doing its job, so the bed nuclei shouldn't learn. But when the amygdala gone, the bed nuclei do not receive that signal and are able to learn.<br />University of California - Los Angeles (2010, August 3). When memory-related region of brain is damaged, other areas compensate, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 5, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2010/08/100802165445.htm<br />
Social Networks<br />Lisa Feldman Barrett, PhD: Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) 2010:<br />primates who live in larger social groups have a larger amygdala<br />Findings: In humans a larger amygdala volume correlates with a larger size and more complex social network. <br />Findings are consistent with and may support the "social brain hypothesis" <br />"social brain hypothesis” suggests that the amygdala in human may have evolved partially to deal with an increasingly complex social life.<br />Massachusetts General Hospital (2010, December 29). Structure deep within the brain may contribute to a rich, varied social life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 4, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2010/12/101226131603.htm<br />