January 25, 2005
Israel Scientist Develops Libido-Meter Brain Wave Test

Dr. Yoram Vardi, in charge of neurology at the Rambam Hospital and professor of urology at the Technion Israel Institute of Science, both in Haifa, Israel, has demonstrated that p300 brain waves are most reduced by exposure to sexually arousing images.

Vardi conducted experiments on 14 male and 16 female volunteers with normal sexual function. Using standard EEG equipment, a pair of headphones and a computer monitor, the subjects listened to music and other sounds to stimulate p300 brain waves. These waves, produced 300 milliseconds after an event, are the brain's normal response to stimuli.

While reduction in p300 brain wave amplitude occurs in response to visual stimuli in general the greatest reduction in p300 brain wave amplitude came in response to es

"What we found was that, in all subjects, the most significant reduction in p300 amplitudes was found when viewing sexual clips. At the end of the testing session, we also asked the subjects via the questionaire how much they were attracted to the sexual content. We found a very significant statistical correlation between what the subject told us and the amount the brain waves were diminished."

For all subjects, a lesser degree of reduction, but still statistically significant from baseline, was found when viewing sports and romantic clips. According to Vardi, what the study shows - and the questionnaire verifies - is that the p300 testing accurately reveals if and how much a person's brain waves react to the film clips of sexual content.

The extent of reduction of p300 brain waves correlated with self-reported sexual interest in the sexual images shown.

This has all sorts of potential uses. One use would be to test people in court cases who claim they have suffered a loss of libido in response to an accident. Also, men who claim they are interested in sex but can't get it up could be tested to see if they really have an unexpressable interest. Another idea: Test for pedophilic and other forbidden tendencies. Want to test a treatment to stop pedophiles from desiring children? Show them pictures and monitor their brain waves. Some day such a test might even need to be passed as a condition for parole.

In medical research an objective test for libido would make clinical testing of drugs for treating sexual dysfunction and for the development of aphrodisiacs even for normal people. Also, diagnosis of types of sexual dysfunction could be done more quickly and accurately.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2005 January 25 02:56 PM  Brain Sexuality

toot said at January 25, 2005 8:42 PM:

Ah, a scientific basis for the prosecution of thought crimes. I must admit to a feeling of uneasiness about this.

LPG said at January 26, 2005 3:37 AM:

I agree with previous comment. Remember Clockwork Orange?

Michael Vassar said at January 26, 2005 7:43 AM:

Prehaps we should be monitoring the thoughts of our "leaders" rather than of the people in our prisons and courts. Of course, I don't think that this is psychologically viable. People wouldn't respect and vote for leaders who would accept such an invasion of their privacy.

Invisible Scientist said at January 26, 2005 10:18 AM:

Michael Vassar wrote:
"Prehaps we should be monitoring the thoughts of our "leaders" rather than of the people in our prisons and courts. Of course, I don't think that this is psychologically viable. People wouldn't respect and vote for leaders who would accept such an invasion of their privacy."

On the conrary, people should be suspicious and even afraid of those leaders who will hide their thoughts from the
nation who elected and trusted them with their entire future. Both Hitler, Stalin came to power by concealing their
true agendas. Had the true agendas of these people were known, they would not have been elected.

Moreover, although elected officials are not merchandise, given the importance of their jobs,
their lives are by definition more open to scrutiny, and in some sense during their time in office,
their privacy can be invaded a lot more than others. The president CAN secretly order wiretapping of suspected
foreign spies, he can even order secret interrogations, but who has the authority to keep him or her in check?

Ray Midge said at January 26, 2005 11:52 AM:

I used to work as a sex crimes prosecutor and one of the tools the 'experts' used to use to measure a possible pedophile's sexual arousal was the ol' penile plethysmographer - basically a penis circumfrance gauge that let you know which photos of different age groups got a penis a little more plump.

[As a civil libertarian aside, this wasn't really used as an investigative tool by police, but most commonly was a part of sexual probation monitoring, to let one know if an impact was bieng made on what a subject was attracted too. Also was used on a voluntary basis by defendants to induce judges into lesser sentences and prosecutors into giving better plea agreements. e.g. - some type of touching ocurred and the judicial system wants to know what type of future threat the defendant poses]

While there were issues regarding it's reliability (can't really say offhand how major these were - maybe they were large), I got the sense the major unspoken impetus was largely due to it's being untasteful somehow. "What, you mean you're fiddling around with someone's penis? Hooking stuff up down there?" This was especially pronounced in cases where the offender was a juvenile - which was an ironic shame becuase it's with juveniles the legal system has the most discretion. Do we lock up forever or put it down to something more akin to a juvenile's curious, natural impulses? The answer to that depends on how strong and skewed his (almost a male exclusive issue) sexual desires are.

Just saying, with this less skeevy breakthrough, the judicial system might get a tool back. Frankly it seems a little more reliable too in that 'penis tumescence' wasn't always the best predictor of sexual attraction.

Garon Poole said at January 26, 2005 8:43 PM:

Regarding the brain-wave analysis test Randall Parker says “Some day such a test might even need to be passed as a condition for parole.”

The New York Times magazine has a recent article about “sex offenders” that discusses a test called the “Abel Assessment for Sexual Interest”. The article follows an individual in a court mandated sexual counseling program who takes this test during treatment. The test subject is shown a sequence of 160 clothed images of people on a computer laptop screen. The test subject is instructed to rate each picture for sexual interest, hitting 1 for ''disgusting'' up through 7 for ''highly sexually arousing.' To advance to the next image the subject is told to click the return key. "The subjects in the pictures are supposed to represent four plainly separate age groups so that areas of attraction can be clearly measured. There are children of 2 to 4, children between 8 and 10, adolescents between 14 and 17 and adults at least 22."

The instruction to rate the images between 1 and 7 appears to be a form of “misdirection” because the article reveals the following. The test gauges erotic preference “not by the 1 to 7 ratings but by the length of time a man lets his eyes linger on each image.” According to the article “the Abel Assessment is widely considered a strong diagnostic tool.”

Here is a link to the article that will work until the article is moved to the payment-required repository. Regarding the penile plethysmograph mentioned by Ray Midge there is an article in "The Skeptic's Dictionary" which is critical here.

It is natural to question the civil liberties implications of these tests. But one should also ask if a skilled and knowledgeable person could develop strategies to manipulate these tests to yield false-negatives and/or false-positives. Consider the lamentable history of "lie detector" tests.

Alessandra said at January 27, 2005 9:44 AM:

Reallly complicated subject. I found it surprising no one mentioned using this as a hiring test procedure, specially of anyone that has a job or activity related to children. Also for adoption, foster parenting, and marriage licences.
I´m neither for nor against this type of testing at the moment, because as others who mentioned Clockwork Orange et al, it seems the issue needs to be discussed in a much more complex way. Thinking about parole is an action after a crime has been committed. I wonder how many people administering the test would pass it as well. The only study I saw that ranked child abusers by profession related #1 psych... type jobs, #2 clergy. Thinking about hiring/foster care selection procedures is on the preventive side. Society needs to be much more pro-active in the prevention of crime. This also means not being blind and deaf to the cultural factors that contribute to forming a criminal mind, our violent sex culture. If society were really serious about preventing child abuse, there would be no child porn, period. A lot of fluffy speeches, very little serious action taken world wide.

This test also relates to that ridiculously manipulated test used for propaganda purposes by homo activists. The test where a few men who said they were anti-homo got aroused by seeing some homo activity images. Hysterical self-righteous homo activists then claimed this test therefore proved that every person who has a position against homosexuality is concealing a major closeted homo-self. My retort is that we apply the same logic in regard to sexual violence. Anyone who gets aroused by watching sexual violence material should be immediately thrown in prison because it can *only* mean they are a closeted sexual criminal (potential or actual). Every time, the moronic pro-homosexuals don´t want to do that study though. Just a coincidence, of course. Don´t we know what that test would reveal.

Bob Badour said at January 27, 2005 4:24 PM:

"the cultural factors that contribute to forming a criminal mind, our violent sex culture."

Alessandra, I think you lose all credibility when you regurgitate that crap.

How do you objectively determine when a culture is a violent sex culture? What cultures are sexless? What cultures are either more or less violent than our own? What quantitative factors do you measure to establish the violence of a culture? How have you quantitatively established any correlation--let alone cause?

Frankly, I cannot think of any culture with a bloodless birth. Nor can I imagine any viable culture denying our basic nature as sexual creatures. Repression seems only to heighten sexuality.

GENEarchy said at January 31, 2005 3:33 PM:

This new tech might actually reveal something interesting about "Wacko Jacko", not that we're in the dark now.

Matt aka DigitalBBQ said at September 26, 2011 11:22 AM:

What will happen in the future when we find a way to detect this in baby's after the first trimester??? (Now i know this sounds goofy kinda like TV would sound to someone in the 1800's or how ultrasound would sound to someone back then too....Too fantasic, kinda like flash gordon or the pre-TESLA era.)
But what if???

Would it come to (Genocide??). Mass abortions? for fear of a baby being born a pedophile.
(This is being looked at already!!! I am not just saying this there is PROOF ONLINE FOR GENETIC MODIFICATION--- My god!!!!)
Would humanity stoop that low?
Well, we are already tazing 6 year old children. Care to google it???-Type in Google (police tase 6 year old).
Now spanking is illegal but a cop can electrocute a child with the power a flyback transformer uses in a 19 inch color TV to light up the screen 43,000V ++.
Very sad :-(

What next?? What next??
Lord help us....Jesus help us.

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