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    Neurons for Good and Bad Surprises

    A recent study with monkeys finds that the amygdala, the emotional center of the brain, has neurons that fire for good surprises, and different neurons that fire for bad surprises.

    September 20, 2007

    Spooky music is spookier with your eyes closed

    It’s Halloween. You’re listening to some creepy, scary music. Maybe it sounds like something like this* – SCARY! You are lying still, attending to the emotional qualities of the music.

    October 31, 2013 — Princess Ojiaku
    The Stress of Crowds

    The Stress of Crowds

    City dwellers may handle pressure differently from those who live in less populated areas

    September 1, 2011 — Alla Katsnelson

    How We Process Horrible Sounds

    Researchers develop a model for how we find certain sounds, like nails on a chalkboard, unbearable. Christie Nicholson reports

    October 26, 2012
    Lasers Activate Killer Instinct in Mice

    Lasers Activate Killer Instinct in Mice

    Stimulating certain areas of the animals’ brains can trigger predatory behaviors including biting and grabbing

    January 12, 2017 — Erin Ross and Nature magazine

    Can We Control Our Fears?



    Welcome to

    Mind Matters Sciam.com's "seminar blog" on the sciences of mind and bbrain. Each week, top researchers in neuroscience, psychology and psychiatry explain and discuss the research driving their fields.

    March 27, 2007 — David Dobbs

    SfN Neuroblogging: PTSD in twins

    We hear a lot about PTSD these days, and with good reason. As more people confront trauma and come away with severely debilitating disorders, it becomes that much more important to understand the mechanism, in order to find ways to treat or prevent it.

    November 17, 2011 — Scicurious

    Friend or Foe?

    How we instantly size up people has little to do with logic and a lot to do with looks

    April 1, 2005 — Marion Sonnenmoser
    Mastery of Emotions

    Mastery of Emotions

    Joseph E. LeDoux discovered how fear arises. Now he is showing that the biology of emotions is what gives life meaning

    February 1, 2006 — David Dobbs
    Abuse and Attachment

    Abuse and Attachment

    A stifled fear response may explain why young victims stand by their abusers

    March 1, 2010 — Erica Westly