Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Self-awareness


Recent findings link fronto-temporal gamma electroencephalographic (EEG) activity to conscious awareness in dreams, but a causal relationship has not yet been established. We found that current stimulation in the lower gamma band during REM sleep influences ongoing brain activity and induces self-reflective awareness in dreams. Other stimulation frequencies were not effective, suggesting that higher order consciousness is indeed related to synchronous oscillations around 25 and 40 Hz.

Concepts: Sleep, Neuroscience, Electroencephalography, Philosophy of mind, Consciousness, Awareness, Self-awareness, Gamma wave


Jung’s Word Association Test was performed under fMRI conditions by 12 normal subjects. Pooled complexed responses were contrasted against pooled neutral ones. The fMRI activation pattern of this generic ‘complexed response’ was very strong (corrected Z scores ranging from 4.90 to 5.69). The activation pattern in each hemisphere includes mirror neurone areas that track ‘otherness’ (perspectival empathy), anterior insula (both self-awareness and emotional empathy), and cingulated gyrus (self-awareness and conflict-monitoring). These are the sites described by Siegel and colleagues as the ‘resonance circuitry’ in the brain which is central to mindfulness (awareness of self) and empathy (sense of the other), negotiations between self awareness and the ‘internal other’. But there is also an interhemispheric dialogue. Within 3 seconds, the left hemisphere over-rides the right (at least in our normal subjects). Mindfulness and empathy are central to good psychotherapy, and complexes can be windows of opportunity if left-brain hegemony is resisted. This study sets foundations for further research: (i) QEEG studies (with their finer temporal resolution) of complexed responses in normal subjects (ii) QEEG and fMRI studies of complexed responses in other conditions, like schizophrenia, PTSD, disorders of self organization.

Concepts: Human brain, Cerebrum, Philosophy of mind, Empathy, Awareness, Self, Self-awareness, Other


Mounting physiological and behavioral evidence has shown that the detectability of a visual stimulus can be enhanced by a simultaneously presented sound. The mechanisms underlying these cross-sensory effects, however, remain largely unknown. Using continuous flash suppression (CFS), we rendered a complex, dynamic visual stimulus (i.e., a talking face) consciously invisible to participants. We presented the visual stimulus together with a suprathreshold auditory stimulus (i.e., a voice speaking a sentence) that either matched or mismatched the lip movements of the talking face. We compared how long it took for the talking face to overcome interocular suppression and become visible to participants in the matched and mismatched conditions. Our results showed that the detection of the face was facilitated by the presentation of a matching auditory sentence, in comparison with the presentation of a mismatching sentence. This finding indicates that the registration of audiovisual correspondences occurs at an early stage of processing, even when the visual information is blocked from conscious awareness.

Concepts: Consciousness, Detection theory, Awareness, Face, Presentation of Mary, Self-awareness, Speech, Binocular rivalry


The self-wounds model of anxiety disorders based on the work of Wolfe (2005, 2006) is delineated here. The focal point of this model is the concept of wounded self or early unresolved emotional injuries. According to this view, anxiety disorders represent a chronic struggle with painful experiences. These emotional experiences are driven by two interrelated layers of psychological processes which arise from the wounded self. While the first layer of this process entails conscious awareness of symptoms resulting from cognitive distortions, the second layer comprises implicit or unconscious interpretations of what the symptoms mean to the patient. This article describes the components of the self-wounds model of anxiety disorders, which offers an integrative perspective on the development, onset, maintenance, and treatment of anxiety disorders. This model can be easily adapted to the understanding and treatment of other emotional disorders.

Concepts: Anxiety, Psychology, Cognition, Philosophy of mind, Mind, Consciousness, Knowledge, Self-awareness


Sepsis is an established global health priority with high mortality that can be curtailed through early recognition and intervention; as such, efforts to raise awareness are potentially impactful and increasingly common. We sought to characterize trends in the awareness of sepsis by examining temporal, geographic, and other changes in search engine utilization for sepsis information-seeking online.

Concepts: Search engine optimization, Awareness, Self-awareness


There is a strong socio-economic gradient in both tobacco-and alcohol-related harm. One possible factor contributing to this social gradient may be greater availability of tobacco and alcohol in more socially-deprived areas. A higher density of tobacco and alcohol outlets is not only likely to increase supply but also to raise awareness of tobacco/alcohol brands, create a competitive local market that reduces product costs, and influence local social norms relating to tobacco and alcohol consumption. This paper examines the association between the density of alcohol and tobacco outlets and neighbourhood-level income deprivation.

Concepts: Cross-sectional study, Sociology, The Association, Awareness, Cross-sectional analysis, Supply and demand, Self-awareness


The implications of sleep for morality are only starting to be explored. Extending the ethics literature, we contend that because bringing morality to conscious attention requires effort, a lack of sleep leads to low moral awareness. We test this prediction with three studies. A laboratory study with a manipulation of sleep across 90 participants judging a scenario for moral content indicates that a lack of sleep leads to low moral awareness. An archival study of Google Trends data across 6 years highlights a national dip in Web searches for moral topics (but not other topics) on the Monday after the Spring time change, which tends to deprive people of sleep. Finally, a diary study of 127 participants indicates that (within participants) nights with a lack of sleep are associated with low moral awareness the next day. Together, these three studies suggest that a lack of sleep leaves people less morally aware, with important implications for the recognition of morality in others.

Concepts: Sleep deprivation, Consciousness, Ethics, Unsolved problems in neuroscience, Morality, Awareness, Self-awareness, Moral


Objective: Otic barotrauma is common among air travellers and can cause severe otalgia, perforation of the tympanic membrane and hearing loss. Many prevention measures exist, with varying evidence to support their use. There are no data to establish if air travellers are aware of them or indeed use them. We aimed to establish air travellers' knowledge of such prevention measures. Methods: We surveyed air travellers at two UK airports by means of a questionnaire. Answers to the questionnaire were collected over a two-week period. Results: Overall, 179 air travellers with a mean age of 28 years (range: 15-72 years) completed the questionnaire. There were 66 female and 113 male air travellers. The majority (84 per cent) complained of symptoms while flying and 30 per cent were not aware of any prevention measures. Barotrauma-related symptoms were reported in 25 per cent of air travellers who were unaware of any prevention measures. Nearly all air travellers (86 per cent) indicated that more information regarding prevention measures would be useful. Conclusion: Air travellers are often not aware of prevention measures to avoid otic barotrauma, and the majority suffer as a result. Increasing public awareness of simple prevention measures would have a significant impact on air travellers.

Concepts: Male, Hearing impairment, Arithmetic mean, Mean, Awareness, Self-awareness


Do people know when they are seen as pressing too hard, yielding too readily, or having the right touch? And does awareness matter? We examined these questions in four studies. Study 1 used dyadic negotiations to reveal a modest link between targets' self-views and counterparts' views of targets' assertiveness, showing that those seen as under- and over-assertive were likely to see themselves as appropriately assertive. Surprisingly, many people seen as appropriately assertive by counterparts mistakenly thought they were seen as having been over-assertive, a novel effect we call the line crossing illusion. We speculated that counterparts' orchestrated displays of discomfort might be partly responsible-behaviors we termed strategic umbrage. Study 2 revealed evidence for widespread strategic umbrage in real-world negotiations and Study 3 linked these behaviors to the line crossing illusion in a controlled negotiation. Study 4 showed that this illusion predicted outcomes in a multi-round negotiation.

Concepts: Psychology, Human behavior, Awareness, Link, Self-awareness, Negotiation, Psychological manipulation, Assertiveness


Despite the prominent position of methotrexate (MTX) in Rheumatoid Arthiris (RA) therapeutics, its real-world effectiveness may be influenced by a relative lack of tolerability or other side effects that physicians may not be aware of but that are bothersome to patients. The aim of this study is to identify suboptimal patient experience with MTX and to raise awareness for clinicians to identify opportunities to mitigate bothersome symptoms and side effects and optimize response to MTX.

Concepts: Hospital, Rheumatoid arthritis, Physician, Awareness, Self-awareness