a year ago

Our brains are obsessed with being social

Recent research shows that our brains feel the need to be social even if we are alone. Published discoveries show how two regions of the brain are experiencing increased connectivity when resting after recording new social information.

The study analyzed the role of two brain regions: the medial prefrontal cortex and tempoparietal junction, which are an integral part of social inference, and our ability to evaluate the personality, states, and intentions of other people. Previous work has shown that these two regions tend to spontaneously increase connectivity during rest periods. For the purpose of the study, 19 participants were asked to perform specially prepared tasks during the fMRI.

The first task consisted in looking at a photograph of a person, their professional title, such as "doctor", and two features describing the individual, such as "educated, honest". Next, the respondents were asked to assess the impression of a given person by estimating their warmth and competence on a scale from 1 to 100 on a computer screen. The second task was similar with the difference that the participants received photos of the place combined with two features describing them.

The results of the study showed that during the resting period after the study, communication between he medial prefrontal cortex and tempoparietal junction of the brain increased. The greater the connectivity between the two default network regions, the higher the social storage performance levels are observed.

Researchers also observed an orderly effect in which participants, when performing a task with photographs of people, and only then with photographs of places, maintained a higher level of connectivity between the two regions of the brain during rest. However, this was not observed in the situation of those persons who were first faced with a task with images depicting places.

The study shows that the brain consolidates social information as soon as it is in a state of rest.

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Źródło: medicalexpress.com

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