The right PAC has been shown to play an integral role in human social behaviour

The right pac has been shown to play an integral role

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and reorganised as early as 3 million years ago. The right PAC has been shown to play an integral role in human social behaviour and social cognition. Evidence from Comparative Neuroscience Modern neuroscience methods (e.g MRI and neuro-histology) have demonstrated that regions of the brain implicated in regulating social behaviour have been subject to significant expansion and reorganisation during the course of primate and hominid evolution. Comparative studies of extant primates have yielded important data in this regard. For example, Robin Dunbar showed that neocortex size relative to whole brain size (‘neocortex ratio’) is correlated with social group size – the latter being a crude measure of social complexity (Dunbar 1992.) In hominoids, it is white matter (and specifically intra-hemispheric white matter) that increases relative to brain size, rather than grey matter (Hofman 1989; Rilling & Insel 1999.) This suggests that white matter connections linking the prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortices to posterior structures such as the superior temporal cortex and PAC have been subject to marked evolutionary change in the hominid line. This is borne out by other comparative research which shows greater- than-expected enlargement of temporal lobe white matter (Rilling & Seligman 2002), the corticobasolateral nucleus of the amygdala (Barton & Aggleton 2000) and the right intraparietal cortex (Gilissen 2001) as one moves from monkey to non-human ape to human. These interconnected structures underpin social cognition, ToM and social behaviour in humans. 9
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Field of Study Major Findings Key References Developmental Neuroscience & Psychology Research on the development of social and language skills in infants reveals that ‘social consciousness’ and interpersonal development is necessary before the emergence of ‘individual consciousness’ and a sense of ‘self.’ Mead 1913 Vygotsky 1978 Brothers 1997 Trevarthen & Aitken 2001 Zahavi 2001 Fuchs 2002 Social Neuroscience Neuropsychological and behavioural research (using various methods such as functional imaging, electrophysiology and animal studies) clarifies the structural and functional anatomy of the ‘social brain as comprising the interconnected regions and circuits of the prefrontal cortex, temporal and limbic lobes and the parietal association cortex. Kling & Steklis 1976 Perrett 1985 Damasio 1994 Le Doux 1994 Broks 1997 Adolphs 1999; 2001 Emery 2000 Amaral 2002 Haxby et al 2002 Neuro- Histology The identification of “mirror neurons” in the prefrontal cortex of both macaques and humans has helped locate the neuronal basis of social cognition, mental state attribution and possibly even empathy. Di Pellegrino et al 1992 Jeannerod 1994 Fadiga et al 1995 Rizzolatti et al 1996 Gallese 2003a; 2003b Decety & Jackson 2004 Schizophrenia and the evolutionary paradigm In the introduction to this chapter, I discussed the apparent failure of a century of research efforts to identify the true nature of schizophrenia and to unravel its complex causation. This has much to do with the dominance of the Cartesian paradigm, but of equal importance is the lack of a unifying, biologically sound framework for conceptualising the disorder. For reasons already discussed, the 10
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