Coming to terms with fear

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The brain mechanisms of fear have been studied extensively using Pavlovian fear conditioning, a procedure that allows exploration of how the brain learns about and later detects and responds to threats. However, mechanisms that detect and respond to threats are not the same as those that give rise to conscious fear. This is an important distinction because symptoms based on conscious and nonconscious processes may be vulnerable to different predisposing factors and may also be treatable with different approaches in people who suffer from uncontrolled fear or anxiety. A conception of so-called fear conditioning in terms of circuits that operate nonconsciously, but that indirectly contribute to conscious fear, is proposed as way forward.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2871-2878
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume111
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 25 2014

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Fear
Brain
Causality
Anxiety
Conditioning (Psychology)

Keywords

  • Consciousness
  • Emotion
  • Global organismic states
  • Pavlovian conditioning
  • Survival circuits

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Coming to terms with fear. / Ledoux, Joseph.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 111, No. 8, 25.02.2014, p. 2871-2878.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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