August 19, 2014
Testosterone Increases Male Brain Response To Threat

Our hormones alter our emotional reactions.

The researchers recruited 16 healthy young male volunteers, who completed two test days on which they received either testosterone or placebo. On both testing days, the men first received a drug that suppressed their testosterone. This step ensured that testosterone levels were similar among all study participants. The amount of testosterone administered in this study only returned testosterone levels to the normal range. Subjects then completed a face-matching task while undergoing a functional magnetic resonance imaging scan.

Data analyses revealed that, compared with placebo, testosterone increased reactivity of the amygdala, hypothalamus and periaqueductal grey when viewing angry facial expressions.

"We were able to show for the first time that increasing levels of testosterone within the normal physiological range can have a profound effect on brain circuits that are involved in threat-processing and human aggression," said Carré, Assistant Professor at Nipissing University.

What's happening in the minds of older guys taking testosterone replacement therapy? Alternatively, what's happening in the minds of older guys with declining testosterone who aren't taking testosterone? Becoming more meek, less assertive, easier push-overs?

30 years from now we'll be able to tune our emotional reactions with drugs and gene therapies. Do you want to tune your emotions?

Share |      Randall Parker, 2014 August 19 12:10 AM 

Anthony said at August 20, 2014 10:12 AM:

Yes, I want to tune my emotions - Damnit!!!

Tim Hogan said at August 22, 2014 7:42 AM:

Any guy that uses three exclamation points after an endearing attempt at irony is gender challenged!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and definitely needs more test. and a guy that counts his exclamation marks to make sure the amount is prime is well, there is no word for that except maybe "Trichotillomania" and that only applies if you pull out 1,2,3,5,7,11......... at a time.

I think a more interesting study would be to determine if female proctologists are more prone to prescribing prostatectomy over active surveillance and yes there are female proctologists - I married one.

ISIS is here. We need more .......... oxytocin!

Joseph Hertzlinger said at August 23, 2014 9:45 PM:

How about tuning emotions to become more suspicious of psychology studies with a sample size of 16?

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