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Feed your brain: News from neuroscience

Reports from the Society for Neuroscience meeting on the moral disengagement of psychopaths, liars' decision making, a parasite that helps cats triumph over rats and how mother rats affect the behavioral development of their pups

9:21pm, November 15, 2008

WASHINGTON — More than 30,000 neuroscientists from around the world gathered in Washington, D.C., November 15–19 for the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience. Presentations covered the science of nerves and brains on scales from molecules to societies. From among the first day’s presentations, Science News staffers report on the latest neural insights into psychopaths, liars and baby rats separated from their mothers, as well as new research on how a tiny parasite disrupts rats’ ingrained fear of cats and how a rat mother’s favoritism for outgoing pups influences developing social skills.

Morality askew in psychopaths’ brains

Psychopaths display a dangerous mix of impulsiveness, grandiose thinking, callousness toward others and manipulative skill. They also show neural responses related to moral insensitivity and a keen interest in moral violations, new studies fin
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