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Description: What part(s) of our brain are actively involved when we have to resolve conflicts like deciding when it is safe to cross a traffic filled street? Well, it may be that the hippocampus, known to be involved in memory processing, is also involved in resolving action conflicts.

Source: Science Daily: Memory region of the brain also involved in conflict resolution.

Date: January 15, 2015

hippocampus and Conflict

Photo Credit: © RUB, Grafik: Bierstedt

Links: Article Link Ruhr-University Bochum. (2015, August 20). ‘Memory region’ of brain also involved in conflict resolution: Hippocampus is involved in quick, successful decisions. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 23, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/08/150820134704.htm

The authors of this research article noted the involvement of the hippocampus (as opposed to the higher regions of the cortex) in the brains of people trying to resolve action conflicts like when it is safe to cross a busy road. The indicate that they are not sure how this function (conflict resolution) interacts with the role of the hippocampus in memory, thought they speculate that the quick processing into memory of solved conflicts would be quite adaptive. They also indicate that their speculations will have to be tested.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Why might it be adaptive to have a “lower” area of the brain/nervous system lay a role in resolving action choice conflicts?
  2. Why might it be adaptive to have resolved action choice conflicts stored in long term memory?
  3. How might the researchers investigate their hypothesis regarding the role of memory in relati0on to resolved conflictual action choices?

References (Read Further):

Oehrm, Carina R. et al, (2015) Human hippocampal dynamics during response conflict, Current Biology, online now, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2015.07.032

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