SCIENTISTS may have found a gene for fear – a gene that controls production of a protein in the region of the brain linked with fearful responses.
Their finding, published today, could lead to new treatments for mental disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder and generalised anxiety.
The gene, known as stathmin or oncoprotein 18, is highly concentrated in the amygdala, a region of the brain associated with fear and anxiety, the researchers report in today’s issue of the journal Cell.
“This is a major advance in the field of learning and memory that will allow for a better understanding of post-traumatic stress disorder, phobias, borderline personality disorder and other human anxiety diseases,” said Gleb Shumyatsky of Rutgers University in New Jersey, who worked on the study.
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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Nov 2005
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, . (2005). Scientists find fear gene. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 24, 2013, from http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2005/11/17/scientists-find-fear-gene/