Personal and impersonal stimuli differentially engage brain networks during moral reasoning.

Author: Xue SW, Wang Y, Tang YY.
Institute of Neuroinformatics and Laboratory for Body and Mind, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China.
Conference/Journal: Brain Cogn.
Date published: 2012 Nov 16
Other: Volume ID: 81 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 24-28 , Word Count: 126

Moral decision making has recently attracted considerable attention as a core feature of all human endeavors. Previous functional magnetic resonance imaging studies about moral judgment have identified brain areas associated with cognitive or emotional engagement. Here, we applied graph theory-based network analysis of event-related potentials during moral decision making to reveal the personal/impersonal distinction in the organization of functional connectivity. Our results indicated that the personal task had more larger long-range connections involved in frontal regions and the right hemisphere, and higher network efficiency of some frontal electrodes such as F2 than the impersonal. These might be related to brain resource reorganization contributing to efficient conflict resolution. These findings provide new insights into neural mechanisms of moral dilemmas.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
PMID: 23164731