The is a great article, and most significantly, the last couple of paragraphs. You know, honestly, I’m not a brain surgeon or scientist, but I’ve always had a feeling about the amygdala, seriously. Angry outbursts, etc…are called “hijacking of the amygdala.” Essentially, you have 6 seconds from the action to the reaction. What people do in that 6 seconds defines a LOT of the bad stuff that happens in the world. I hope this study gets recognition. I think they’re onto something.

“They also discovered something extraordinary. “In a challenging social situation, the orbitofrontal cortex of a healthy individual is activated in order to inhibit aggressive impulses and to maintain normal interactions,” explains Sandi. “But in the rats we studied, we noticed that there was very little activation of the orbitofrontal cortex. This, in turn, reduces their ability to moderate their negative impulses. This reduced activation is accompanied by the overactivation of the amygdala, a region of the brain that’s involved in emotional reactions.” Other researchers who have studied the brains of violent human individuals have observed the same deficit in orbitofrontal activation and the same corresponding reduced inhibition of aggressive impulses. “It’s remarkable; we didn’t expect to find this level of similarity,” says Sandi.

“This is a key finding which highlights the importance of not only developing social programs and politics, but also of reinforcing research that could offer valid [medical] treatments for individuals that have been victimized early in life,” says Sandi “We need to understand the neurobiological mechanisms to offer better solutions to break ‘the cycle of violence.’”

When surprisingly violent crimes are committed, most recently including the massacre that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown Connecticut, it’s the prerogative of scientists and the rest of us alike, to try to make sense of the incomprehensible. Unfortunately, most incidents such as…

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