The title of this article may not catch on as a song lyric, but new neurobiology research shows close friends can cause more of a response in brain regions such as the medial prefrontal cortex than strangers can.
A study published in October's Cortex has shown young people who regularly play video games have an advantage in performing tasks which require visuomotor skills. The study also found that gamers show increased activity in the prefrontal cortex when asked to perform visuomotor tasks. By contrast, non-gamers had more reliant use of the parietal cortex, an area which involves hand-eye coordination, when performing visuomotor tasks.
New psychology research from CU-Boulder suggests that "neural inhibition" is a critical component in our ability to make choices. Psychologists have proposed people who suffer from anxiety could have decreased neuronal inhibition, which makes it more difficult to make important decisions.
Neuroscience researchers suggest that utilizing fMRI studies could help to provide biomarkers for the diagnosis of depression. A recent fMRI study of patients with depression showed marked abnormal activations in the medial prefronal cortex. Researchers believe that by identifying the neurobiological markers for depression, psychiatrists can tailor medications and therapies to suit the needs of individual patients.
Researchers look deeper into animal emotions for clues about decision making. New approaches in the study of animal behavior allow researchers to study the effects of optimistic and pessimistic moods on animal behavior.