While some scientists overlook the existence of a sixth sense for danger, a new research from Washington University in St. Louis has discovered a brain area that clearly acts as an early warning system and helps us adjust our behavior to avoid dangerous situations.
"Our brains are better at picking up not obvious warning signs than we previously thought," said Joshua Brown, a PhD in psychology in the issue of the journal Science.
The findings offer exact scientific evidence for a new way to form a concept of the complex control processes taking place in and around the ACC, a brain area located near the top of the frontal lobes(耳垂) and along the walls that divide the left and right hemispheres(大脑半球).
"In the past, we found activity in the ACC when people had to make a difficult decision, or after they make a mistake," Brown said. "But now we find that this brain area can actually learn to recognize when you might make a mistake, even before a difficult decision has to be made. So the ACC appears to act as an early warning system—— it learns to warn us in advance when our behavior might lead to a negative outcome, so that we can be more careful and avoid making a mistake."
By providing a clearer picture by which we self monitor and control our behavior, the study is an important step in efforts to develop more effective treatments for mental illnesses. It also provides a new way of understanding inappropriate behaviors that often accompany mental illnesses.
"Our results suggest how injury of the ACC can lead to breakdowns in the early warning system, so that the brain fails to stop or control inappropriate behavior ahead of time," said Brown. "On the other hand, in those persons with mental disorder, the ACC might warn us of an upcoming problem even when no problem is in the existence."
Known to be an important part of the brain's control system, the ACC is believed to help adjust between cold, hard, fact-based reasoning and emotional responses, such as love, fear or expectation.
1.According to the passage, the ACC____________.
A. refers to the sixth sense for danger
B. deals with obvious warning situations
C. connects the left and right hemispheres
D. sends warning messages in advance
2.The new research is beneficial because it ________ .
A. provides a new way of avoiding mistakes
B. adjusts emotional responses in time of danger
C. helps find better treatments for mental illnesses