The brain structural disposition to social interaction

Authors

  • Maël Lebreton,

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    3. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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  • Anna Barnes,

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    3. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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  • Jouko Miettunen,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
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  • Leena Peltonen,

    1. Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Hinxton, Cambridge, UK
    2. Department of Medicinal Genetics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
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  • Khanum Ridler,

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Clinical Imaging Centre, CPDM, GlaxoSmithKline, London, UK
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  • Juha Veijola,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
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  • Päivikki Tanskanen,

    1. Department of Radiology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
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  • John Suckling,

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    3. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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  • Marjo-Riitta Jarvelin,

    1. Department of Public Health Science and General Practice, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
    2. Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Imperial College London, London, UK
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  • Peter B. Jones,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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  • Matti Isohanni,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
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  • Edward T. Bullmore,

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    3. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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  • Graham K. Murray

    1. Brain Mapping Unit, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    2. Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
    3. Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
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Dr G. K. Murray, Brain Mapping Unit, Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Box 189 Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge CB2 0QQ.
E-mail: gm285@cam.ac.uk

Abstract

Social reward dependence (RD) in humans is a stable pattern of attitudes and behaviour hypothesized to represent a favourable disposition towards social relationships and attachment as a personality dimension. It has been theorized that this long-term disposition to openness is linked to the capacity to process primary reward. Using brain structure measures from magnetic resonance imaging, and a measure of RD from Cloninger’s temperament and character inventory, a self-reported questionnaire, in 41 male subjects sampled from a general population birth cohort, we investigated the neuro-anatomical basis of social RD. We found that higher social RD in men was significantly associated with increased gray matter density in the orbitofrontal cortex, basal ganglia and temporal lobes, regions that have been previously shown to be involved in processing of primary rewards. These findings provide evidence for a brain structural disposition to social interaction, and that sensitivity to social reward shares a common neural basis with systems for processing primary reward information.

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