Activation of brain areas concerned with social cognition during moral decisions is abnormal in schizophrenia patients and unaffected siblings

Authors
de Achaval, Delfina; Villarreal, Mirta Fabiana; Salles, Arleen; Bertomeu, Maria Julia; Costanzo, Elsa Y.; Goldschmidt, Micaela Giuliana; Castro, Mariana Nair; Van Der Poel, Iris; Nemeroff, Charles B.; Guinjoan, Salvador Martín
Publication Year
2013
Language
English
Format
article
Status
Published version
Description
Moral decision-making involves complex social cognitive processes which are known to be altered in patients with schizophrenia and first-degree relatives. Traditional philosophical views on human moral behavior have distinguished between utilitarian views (which emphasize outcomes) and deontological approaches (defining what is right to do according to certain norms). Since emotions have been sug- gested to play a determining role in moral behavior, we hypothesized patients with schizophrenia and unaffected siblings would make more utilitarian choices and show faulty activation of brain areas con- cerned with emotion regulation during such tasks. Unexpectedly, all participants (n 1⁄4 13 per group) made the same proportion of utilitarian and deontological decisions. Brain activation common to all groups induced by moral decisions included two circumscribed portions of right ventromedial and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, adding to previous evidence on a right prosencephalic cognitive network involved in ethical decisions. However, brain activation induced by moral decisions was different in healthy persons, schizophrenia patients, and nonpsychotic siblings in regards to areas directly concerned with emotion processing. These results seem to underscore the role of acquired norms in moral de- cisions, a frequently overlooked concept in the neurobiological characterization of human ethical behavior, and add to previous evidence of abnormal social cognitive processing in schizophrenia.
Fil: de Achaval, Delfina. Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina; Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas; Argentina;
Fil: Villarreal, Mirta Fabiana. Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina; Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas; Argentina;
Fil: Salles, Arleen. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas; Argentina; Centro de Investigaciones Filosóficas; Argentina;
Fil: Bertomeu, Maria Julia. Centro de Investigaciones Filosóficas; Argentina;
Fil: Costanzo, Elsa Y.. Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina;
Fil: Goldschmidt, Micaela Giuliana. Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina;
Fil: Castro, Mariana Nair. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Medicina. Departamento de Ciencias Fisiológicas. Laboratorio de Neurociencias; Argentina; Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas; Argentina; Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina;
Fil: Van Der Poel, Iris. Nijmegen Medical Centre. Radboud University; Países Bajos;
Fil: Nemeroff, Charles B.. University of Miami. Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Estados Unidos de América;
Fil: Guinjoan, Salvador Martín. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Medicina. Departamento de Ciencias Fisiológicas. Laboratorio de Neurociencias; Argentina; Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas; Argentina; Fundación para la Lucha contra las Enfermedades Neurológicas de la Infancia; Argentina;
Subject
Moral
Emotion
Schizophrenia
Siblings
Neurociencias
Medicina Básica
CIENCIAS MÉDICAS Y DE LA SALUD
Psiquiatría
Medicina Clínica
CIENCIAS MÉDICAS Y DE LA SALUD
Access level
Restricted access
License
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.5/ar/
Repository
CONICET Digital (CONICET)
Institution
Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas
OAI Identifier
oai:ri.conicet.gov.ar:11336/1814