Sep, 2022 - By WMR
The worst-case scenario thinking may be related to positive and negative valence, according to recent research. The brain defaults to a fearful state until neurotensin is released.
Positive and negative emotions are linked in the human brain. The process through which the brain associates certain emotions with a memory is known as valence assignment. Both positive and negative valence could be reached through those. Researchers still didn't know what signal was operating as the switch operator to direct which track should be used at any particular time.
The current study focused on the significance of the signalling chemical neurotensin to BLA neurons. The study is researched by Salk's Systems Neurobiology Laboratory and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator. They were aware that cells linked to valence interpretation produce the neuropeptide neurotensin. However, there are several other neurotransmitters are as well. So the scientists specifically deleted the neurotensin gene from the cells using CRISPR gene editing techniques. CRISPR has never before been used to focus on a single neurotransmitter function.
In this research work mice were unable to assign positive valence and were unable to develop an association among a negative stimulus and the subsequent tone. in the absence of neurotensin signalling in the BLA. Negative valence was prevented without the need for neurotensin. Instead, the animals developed a stronger link between the second tone and a negative stimulus, becoming even more adept at negative valence. Whether neurotensin levels can be altered in people's brains to treat anxiety or Trauma, the researchers are yet unsure. The findings suggests that, until neurotensin is released, the brain is by default predisposed to fear. It is activating the neurons the brain cells that have a positive valence and negative valence. From the standpoint of evolution, it aids people in avoiding hazardous circumstances. It obviously appeals to people who frequently assume the worst about a situation.