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Samantha Gier

on 15 January 2015

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Transcript of Neurocriminology

Neurocriminology is an up and coming research which helps society and scientists understand the brains of criminal offenders. This research enables law enforcement to not only understand criminals and their predispositions for violent behavior but also prevent the behaviors that are so harmful to society.
I picked this topic because it combines criminals, law, and science into one collaborative topic. It is a very up and coming science and is proving to be very helpful in convicting and treating criminal offenders. Neuropsychology is a new field of study with a growing job rate and the starting salary of the job ranges from &7,500 to $80,700.
Psychopathy (APD)
Psychopaths have a host of impairments including
a stunted ability to forge close relationships
manipulative personalities
committing of crimes without feeling any remorse.
The starts of the science
Theory started by Lambroso
Italian criminologist and physician
Stated that some individuals evolve while others devolve

His ideas flourished throughout Europe but were eventually rejected.
Genes Coding for Psychopaths
Monoamine Oxidase (MOMA)
The low levels of MAOA are linked to reduced volume in the amygdala portion of your brain
Amygdala-emotional center of the brain, involved in fear, aggression and social interactions
MOMA is also responsible for the breakdown of serotonin in the body.
Serotonin maintains mood balance.
Indicators of ADP
Low Resting Heart Rate
Poor Fear Conditioning
Riboflavin Deficiencies (Chapped lips)
Blue Baby
Neurological and Genetic Predispositions in Criminal Offenders
"Cesare Lombroso." Cesare Lombroso. Web. 04 Jan. 2015.
Studies of neurocriminology have examined
hormone levels
neurotransmitter levels
physiological indices
brain impairments
“Behavioral genetics is not there yet; we cannot explain individual behaviors, only large population statistics.”
, 50% of variance in aggressive and antisocial behavior can be explained by genetics
“Psychopaths know right from wrong, but they do not have the feeling of what is right and what is wrong.”
"Josef Mengele." Timetoast. Web. 05 Jan. 2015.
He was notorious for the selection of victims to be killed in the gas chambers and for performing unscientific and often deadly human experiments on prisoners
Fear Conditioning
Ability to learn associations between neutral cues and adverse stimuli.
Autonomic Fear Conditioning
Anticipation of a punishment which causes an involuntary physical response that can be measured on the skin.
Skin Conductance Response (SCR)
Electrophysiological indicator of a person's arousal measured by how much they are sweating.
Knight, Will. "New Scientist Technology Blog - New Scientist." New Scientist Technology Blog. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Jan. 2015.
“poor conditioning is theorized to be associated with poor development of the conscience.”
Along with the 5 genes that have been linked to violent behavior, murderers have poor functioning prefrontal cortexes (PFC).
Steroid Hormones
Low levels are indicative of aggressive behavior
“A lasting biological and not just parental or short-term environmental component to this type of chronic antisocial behavior”
"Cortisol | Santosa Wellness Centre | Thailand, Phuket." Santosa Wellness Center How to Reduce CORTISOL The Answer Is Right under Your Nose Comments. 01 Aug. 2014. Web. 08 Jan. 2015.
Abnormalities in the brain
prefrontal cortex
is responsible for attention and cognitive flexibility
anterior cingulate cortex
is known for error processing, conflict monitoring, avoidance learning, and aggressive behavior.
Codes for blunted emotional responding and cold and calculated aggression.
"Yehoshua of Nazareth KNEW Violence Is Intelligence, Don't Be ANTI Christ *!*." Cheryl Plumlee. 03 June 2014. Web. 08 Jan. 2015.
Environmental Factors
-Exposure to lead
-Smoking, drinking, poor nutrition
during pregnancy
Failed closing of
Amini, Behrang. "Cavum Septum." Cavum Septum Pellucidum. Web. 8 Jan. 2015.
Case Studies
Teacher in the United States had a sudden urge to rape his landlady
Doctors noticed abnormalities in his daily routines
Found a huge tumor on his pre-frontal cortex
Removed the tumor and he went back to normal
Identical twins are used because they share all of the same DNA
Adopted children allow for the
removal of enviromental factors
from experiments.
Donta Page
Page robbed a woman in Denver, raped her, slit her throat, and proceeded to kill her by plunging a kitchen knife into her chest
Page had only been out of prison for four months when he committed the murder.
Scans revealed he had a distinct lack of activation in the ventral prefrontal cortex
“poor nutrition, severe parental neglect, sustained physical and sexual abuse, early head injuries, learning disabilities, poor cognitive functioning and lead exposure”
Kient Kahl
"Slavenka & Obi." : The Man Who Gets into the Minds of Psychopaths. Web. 12 Jan. 2015.

Researched 96 Male Offenders
those with low activity in the anterior cingulate cortex were twice as likely to commit another offense as those with high activity

Also a small amygdala correlated with
"My Journey to Fit: A Fifty-Something's Weight Loss Journey: Progress Photos." My Journey to Fit: A Fifty-Something's Weight Loss Journey: Progress Photos. Web. 12 Jan. 2015.
"#11 The Psychopath." SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. Web. 12 Jan. 2015.
The difference between...
Case two, represents what we might call a personal dilemma. It involves the emotion center of the brain known as the amygdala, the circuitry of hot empathy. What we might call the feeling of feeling what another person is feeling.
The pattern of brain activation in both normal people and psychopaths is identical on the presentation of the first case, but radically different when things start to get a bit more personal (Case 2). They have no problem chucking the person over.
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