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16604Re: The Neurobiology Of Wisdom

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  • jogeshwarmahanta
    Apr 23, 2009
      Why neurobiology of wisdom? Scanty changes are fragile. I ask a very simple question on change-Is natural beauty of your face increasing day by day?

      --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, medit8ionsociety <no_reply@...> wrote:
      > Researchers at the University of California,
      > San Diego School of Medicine have compiled the
      > first-ever review of the neurobiology of wisdom -
      > once the sole province of religion and philosophy.
      > The study by Dilip V. Jeste, MD, and Thomas W.
      > Meeks, MD, of UC San Diego's Department of Psychiatry
      > and the Stein Institute for Research on Aging, was
      > published in the Archives of General Psychiatry.
      > "Defining wisdom is rather subjective, though
      > there are many similarities in definition across
      > time and cultures," said Jeste, who is the Estelle
      > and Edgar Levi Chair in Aging, professor of psychiatry
      > and neuroscience and chief of geriatric psychiatry
      > at UC San Diego. "However, our research suggests
      > that there may be a basis in neurobiology for wisdom's
      > most universal traits."
      > Wisdom has been defined over centuries and
      > civilizations to encompass numerous psychological
      > traits. Components of wisdom are commonly agreed
      > to include such attributes as empathy, compassion
      > or altruism, emotional stability, self-understanding,
      > and pro-social attitudes, including a tolerance for
      > others' values.
      > "But questions remain: is wisdom universal, or
      > culturally based?" said Jeste. "Is it uniquely human,
      > related to age? Is it dependent on experience or
      > can wisdom be taught?"
      > Empirical research on wisdom is a relatively new
      > phenomenon. Meeks and Jeste noted that in the 1970s,
      > there were only 20 peer-reviewed articles on wisdom,
      > but since 2000, there have been more than 250 such
      > publications. However, the researchers found no
      > previous studies using the keyword "wisdom" in combination
      > with the terms neurobiology, neuroimaging or
      > neurotransmitters.
      > In order to determine if specific brain circuits and
      > pathways might be responsible for wisdom, the
      > researchers examined existing articles, publications
      > and other documents for six attributes most commonly
      > included in the definition of wisdom, and for the
      > brain circuitry associated with those attributes.
      > Meeks and Jeste focused primarily on functional
      > neuroimaging studies, studies which measure changes
      > in blood flow or metabolic alterations in the brain,
      > as well as on neurotransmitter functions and genetics.
      > They found, for example, that pondering a situation
      > calling for altruism activates the medial pre-frontal
      > cortex, while moral decision-making is a combination
      > of rational (the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, which
      > plays a role in sustaining attention and working memory), emotional/social (medial pre-frontal cortex), and
      > conflict detection (the anterior cingulate cortex,
      > sometimes also associated with a so-called "sixth
      > sense") functions.
      > Interestingly, several common brain regions appear to
      > be involved in different components of wisdom. The UC
      > San Diego researchers suggest that the neurobiology
      > of wisdom may involve an optimal balance between more
      > primitive brain regions (the limbic system) and the
      > newest ones (pre-frontal cortex.) Knowledge of the
      > underlying mechanisms in the brain could potentially
      > lead to developing interventions for enhancing wisdom.
      > "Understanding the neurobiology of wisdom may
      > have considerable clinical significance, for example,
      > in studying how certain disorders or traumatic brain
      > injuries can affect traits related to wisdom," said
      > Jeste, stressing that this study is only a first
      > step in a long process.
      > Notes:
      > The study was supported in part by grants from the National Institute on Mental Health, the National Institute on Aging, the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration, the Sam and Rose Stein Institute for Research on Aging at UC San Diego and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
      > Source:
      > Debra Kain
      > University of California - San Diego
      > --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      > Article URL: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/145396.php
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