Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Learning from mistakes, or not

Some people may just not have the genes to learn from experience. Or so says a new paper published in Science (2007 Dec 7;318(5856):1642-5) and reviewed by Nature. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences imaged peoples brains while giving them a learning task. People with a particular gene variant, one which reduces the number of Dopamine D2 receptors in their brains, were less sensitive to negative feedback and kept making bad decisions. Such people are also more likely to be addicts.

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