Hark! What light through yonder neuron breaks

An unintentionally funny first line from a new study on the neuroscience of love.

The lifetime prevalence of romantic love is extremely high, as romantic love strikes nearly 100% of the people at one or more times during their life. As a comparison, the lifetime prevalence of experiencing any mental disorder is “only” 46.4% (National Institute of Mental Health, US).

The paper also has the oddly Shakespearean sounding line

By virtue of using a cognitive task with a full factorial design, we show that the dorsal striatum is not activated by beloved-related information per se, but only by beloved-related information that is attended

In fact, when Shakespeare wrote “Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind” he was probably thinking of the role of attentional modulation in the neural response to images of your lover based on the finding that activity in the dorsal striatum is only increased when the participants have to notice rather than ignore pictures of their beloved in an fMRI-based oddball task.

Angels! I think I hear the sound of angels!
 

Link to locked study.

2 Comments

  1. Liz, LICSW
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

    Social workers who do mental health care, such as myself, are working for institutions with no funds for journals.Is there a reason you post what you do without challenging the pay to read system? I am curious about this. Although I enjoy your comments about this material, I am having negative thoughts about Mind Hacks being part of a system that does tease and cutoff, it leaves those of us in the trenches w/o the means to get to the meat of the article. It also taints my relationship with MindHacks.

    • Erik not Eric
      Posted October 29, 2012 at 6:25 am | Permalink

      @Liz LICSW
      You are barking up the wrong tree here Liz,
      If anything I have seen this site repeatedly create access to sites where there was none.

      And hound pay sites to take down their paywalls in a recent example last month.

      And provide links with access for free whenever they can.

      And offer their own work free whenever it can be made available.

      Do not shoot the messenger here.


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