Neural and/or hormonal Mechanisms in Aggression

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1. What did Dabbs et al find?

  • Testosterone levels in saliva were able to correctly differentiate between violent and non-violent criminals.
  • Low levels of cortisol in habitual violent offenders
  • castrated male mice showed decreased aggression which then increased when given testosterone
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2. Alternative theory

  • Griffiths' biopsychosocial theory
  • Diathesis-Stress

3. What do amphetamines also do as well as increase aggressive behaviour?

  • It increases noradrenaline which acts on the CNS and triggers the fight or flight response, so this may increase aggression.
  • Reduces dopamine

4. Which study found that anti-psychotic drugs (reduces dopamine) increased aggressive behaviour?

  • Lavine
  • Buitlaar
  • Bond

5. What did Lavine find?

  • Amphetamines are drugs that increase dopamine increased aggressive behaviour
  • Anti-psychotic drugs (reduces dopamine) increased aggressive behaviour
  • In clinical studies of antidepressants (increases serotonin levels) impulsive aggression and irritability were reduced


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