LONDON, NETRALNEWS.COM – For most people, seeing or hearing someone laugh makes us want to join in, since as laughing is contagious. However, researchers have found out that boys who do not feel this are at risk of becoming psychopaths.
Researchers said areas of the brain that encourage you to join others in laughter and resonate with the emotions of others differ significantly.
Individuals at risk of psychopathy show persistent distracting behaviors along with unfeeling, unemotional traits.
"Most of the researches focused on how individuals with psychopathic traits process negative emotions and how their responses to them might explain their ability to attack others," said senior author Essi Viding from the University College London, as quoted by Daily Mail.
Researchers wanted to investigate how boys are at risk of developing emotionally psychopathic processes which promote social affiliation, such as laughter. They looked at 62 boys aged between 11 and 16 years who had disruptive or insensitive or unemotional behavior.
They also took a control group of 30 normally behaved boys. The groups are tailored to their ability, socioeconomic, ethnicity and vigilance, background.
"Psychopathy is an adult personality disorder, however, we know from longitudinal studies that some children are at higher risk of developing psychopathy, and we monitor the causes that indicate the risk," Dr. Viding said.
Researchers noted the children's brain activity using functional MRI as they listened to the genuine laughter, posed laughter and crying sounds.
Boys in the study were asked for scoring on a scale of 1 to 7, 'How much does hearing the sound make you feel like joining or feeling the emotion?' and 'How much does the voice reflect the emotion that is really felt?'
Boys who showed disruptive behavior reported less desire to join in with laughter rather than normally behaved children.
Boys with unemotional properties have reduced brain activity in the anteroir insula and additional motor areas. This area of the brain is believed to adapt to other people's emotions and join in laughing.
Researchers then want to see further into children at risk of developing psychopathy and antisocial personality disorder.