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Indirect spinothalamic pathways. These pathways mediate the affective and arousal components of pain, temperature, and simple tactile sensations. (A) The ascending axons in the paleothalamic tract synapse in the brainstem reticular formation and neurons in midline and intralaminar thalamic nuclei, which then project diffusely to the cerebral cortex including the cingulate gyrus. (B) In the spinoreticular tract, one group of ascending axons projects to the medullary reticular formation, and…

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Anterior cingulate cortex (ACC): the frontal part of the cingulate cortex that resembles a "collar" surrounding the frontal part of the corpus callosum; plays a role in a wide variety of autonomic functions such as regulating blood pressure and heart rate; also involved in rational cognitive functions, such as reward anticipation, decision-making, empathy, impulse control, emotion

from io9

Why do some traumatized people get PTSD while others don't?

People with PTSD are shown to have 2 areas of the brain that are sensitive to STRESS SHRINK: the hippocampus,in the limbic system important for memory & the anterior cingulate cortex, part of the prefrontal cortex that is involved in reasoning & decision-making. A fMRI, which tracks blood flow in the brain, revealed that when people who have PTSD are reminded of the trauma, they tend to have an underactive prefrontal cortex & an overactive amygdala, which processes fear and emotion.

from io9

Why do some traumatized people get PTSD while others don't?

People with PTSD are shown to have 2 areas of the brain that are sensitive to STRESS SHRINK: the hippocampus,in the limbic system important for memory & the anterior cingulate cortex, part of the prefrontal cortex that is involved in reasoning & decision-making. A fMRI, which tracks blood flow in the brain, revealed that when people who have PTSD are reminded of the trauma, they tend to have an underactive prefrontal cortex & an overactive amygdala, which processes fear and emotion.

from ScienceDaily

Anxious? Activate your anterior cingulate cortex with a little meditation

Scientists, like Buddhist monks and Zen masters, have known for years that meditation can reduce anxiety, but not how. Scientists have now succeeded in identifying the brain functions involved.

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Nicotine Addiction Linked With Weak Communication in Circuit: Smokers with greater dependence on nicotine, as evidenced by higher scores on the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND), demonstrated weaker communication in a brain circuit connecting the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and the striatum. Communication strength was similar with and without a nicotine patch, suggesting that this circuit is unresponsive to the medication.