View Full Version : Scientists Gain Insights into How to Erase Pathological Fear

12-15-2010, 08:10 PM

simon p. murphy
12-16-2010, 04:07 PM
Finally a feasible alternative to having my amygdalae removed!

12-17-2010, 04:31 PM
On a related note:

"A woman who cannot feel afraid because of a missing structure in her brain could help scientists discover treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Research published in Current Biology (http://www.cell.com/current-biology/abstract/S0960-9822%2810%2901508-3) showed the woman felt no fear in a variety of scary situations...

Lead researcher Justin Feinstein said: "Because she is missing her amygdala, she is also missing the ability to detect and avoid danger in the world.

"It is quite remarkable that she is still alive."Link (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-12017039).

12-18-2010, 06:11 PM
What is more interesting in this study is not that they could alleviate fear, but that in the wrong hands such fear could ultimately be used in experiments of terror on whole populations... the inverse relation of our chemical hygiene therapies as terror rather than healing practices. As in everything, the military-industrial complex will be the ultimate arbiter of our dark desires. As the article in the Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/3346809/Fear-circuits-can-be-tweaked-to-make-us-braver.html) reminds us:

However, the advances reported by two teams in the journal Nature also raise the prospect that a drug that tinkers with the brain’s fear circuitry could also be abused so that, for example, governments could create fearless soldiers.

The team found that two distinct populations of neurons (brain cells) in a part of the brain called the amygdala, two almond shaped structures deep in both hemispheres of the brain, are involved in different aspects of fear memory - one in the elimination of established fear responses, and the other in the ability to refresh those memories.