Is there a neurobiology of moral behavior?

Esiste una neurobiologia del comportamento morale?

D. Marazziti, P. Landi, S. Baroni, L. Dell'Osso

Dipartimento di Psichiatria, Neurobiologia, Farmacologia e Biotecnologie, Università di Pisa

One of the most intriguing frontiers of the current neuroscientific research is constituted by the investigation of the neural basis of the moral sense. In fact, an innate moral sense does exist in humans, which is regulated by specific brain mechanisms evolutionary selected inasmuch they may promote species survival. Besides the innate moral sense, there is the bulk of rules and laws established by a given group that is a product of culture. The available findings suggest that a main center modulating the moral sense is the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, with its multiple interactions with different brain areas. Moreover, moral judgment and behavior would be the product of the integration between emotional and rational processes. Since converging observations outline how lesions of the proposed neural network may underlie personality changes and criminal behaviors, the scientific implications of the studies in this field impinge on legal and social issues.

Scarica il PDF