Friday, March 9, 2012

Telegraph: Blood pressure drug 'reduces in-built racism'

Extreme right wingers may have defective amygdalas

"Propranolol is most often used to reduce high blood pressure by lowering the heart rate, as well as angina and irregular heartbeat. It is also used to manage the physical symptoms of anxiety, and control migraine.

It is thought to work by blocking activation of the peripheral 'autonomic' nervous system, and in areas of the brain involved with formulating emotional responses, including fear, called the amygdalae. Rightardia has reported before that conservatives have larger amygdala than liberals."

The amygdala is an almond shaped mass located deep within the temporal lobe of the brain.

The amygdala is a limbic system structure that is involved in many of our emotions and motivations.

Propranolol may be able to suppress racism.

Dr Chris Chambers, Cardiff University's School of Psychology, said the study should be treated with "extreme caution". He added:

We don't know whether the drug influenced racial attitudes only or whether it altered implicit brain systems more generally. And we can't rule out the possibility that the effects were due to the drug incidentally reducing heart rate.



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