Emotional Behaviors

Emotional Behaviors
How are emotions and
physiological responses linked?
Common Sense View
of event
of Fear/Anxiety/Stress
I. _____________________(1884): A theory of
emotion that suggests that behaviors and
physiological responses are directly elicited by
situations and that feelings of emotions are
produced by feedback from these behaviors
and responses
of bear
of Fear
Example: the sight of a bear elicits increases in
several autonomic (heart rate, blood pressure,
etc), endocrine (hormonal) and behavioral
responses (running), which in turn produce the
conscious feeling of fear.
II. ___________________ (1900s): The theory
that emotional experience and emotional
expression are parallel processes that have no
direct causal relation
(i.e., autonomic and behavioral responses
are completely independent from “feelings”)
of bear
of Fear
Strong predictions of these two theories:
- James-Lange theory predicts that without
autonomic and somatic feedback, people would
have no emotions
- Cannon-Bard theory predicts just the opposite,
that person does not need autonomic and
somatic feedback to be aware of emotions
Studies have indicated
that both theories are
right and wrong at
the same time
III. Modern biopsychological view of emotions.
Antonio Damasio has recently suggested his
_________________________ of emotion, which
suggests that signals (markers) arising from
internal and external environment (emotional
stimuli) act to guide behavior and decision
making, usually in an unconscious process
The limbic circuit (Papez, 1937) and emotion:
Influential early neuroanatomical circuit of
several interconnected brain structures believed
to be important for emotional expression and
Papez proposed that emotional __________ was
produced by activity of the limbic circuit upon the
hypothalamus, and that emotional __________ was
the product of limbic activity upon the cortex
(from the cingulate cortex)
The Amygdala and Emotions
The Kluver-Bucy (1939) syndrome: originally
observed in monkeys sustaining bilateral anterior
temporal lobectomies (especially the amygdaloid
Behavioral outcome of this surgical procedure
include the following:
- __________________
- consumption of nearly everything edible;
- increased, but inappropriate, sexual activity
(often towards inanimate objects);
- tendency to repeatedly investigate same objects;
- tendency to investigate objects with mouth;
- _____________________________
This syndrome has been observed in patients
sustaining bilateral removal of the amygdaloid
complex and some types of encephalitis.
The feeling of fear produces a constellation of
endocrine, autonomic, and behavioral responses
that are very characteristic. Examples: increased
heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, arousal,
ulcers, urination, defecation, glucocorticoid
secretion, facial expression of fear, fight or
flight response, etc
All these autonomic and behavioral reactions in
response to fearful situations have been shown
to be organized, integrated, and controlled by the
- lesions of the amygdala in laboratory animals
normally eliminate all these fear reactions
Example: Normal rats are very scared of cats,
(natural predators of rodents), and rats do not
normally approach cats, even if the cat is
anesthetized; however, rats with bilateral damage
to the amygdala will climb all over anesthetized
cats and even pull their wiskers!!!
Amygdala & Fear Conditioning
Sensory cue:
Sight, smell,
sound etc
Endocrine, Sympathetic &
Behavioral Responses
Possible clinical relevance for anxiety disorders,
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Patients evaluated for neurosurgery and subjected
to electrical brain stimulations show autonomic
signs of fear when stimulated in ______________
but no reports of _____________________
- however, ____________________ produces both
autonomic fear responses and experiential
reports of fear
Bilateral damage to the amygdala in humans also
prevents the elicitation of several _____________
______________________ in response to fear
provoking stimuli
Negatively charged stimuli which are fearful also
help remember details of the situation; people
with amygdala damage do not show this
facilitating effect of negative emotions on memory
Finally, human subjects who participate in brain
imaging experiments (PET or fMRI scans) and
are shown __________________________ display
particularly high brain activity levels of the
amygdala bilaterally
Imaging studies e.g. functional magnetic resonance imaging
(fMRI) which indirectly measures neuronal activation,
also show that the amygdala is central to the fear
fMRI is based on the facts that:
1. active neurons use oxygen, so there will be increased
blood flow to the area.
2. oxyhemoglobin and deoxyhemoglobin have different
magnetic properties
e.g. The amygdala is activated after seeing pictures of fearful
or angry faces. It does not require conscious awareness of
emotion to be activated.
Miller et al., (2005) J. Neuropsychiatry Clin. Neurosci. 17:1-6
Masked fearful faces
Masked angry faces