Social status modulates neural activity in the mentalizing network.
|Social status modulates neural activity in the mentalizing network.
|Year of Publication
|Muscatell KA, Morelli SA, Falk EB, Way BM, Pfeifer JH, Galinsky AD, Lieberman MD, Dapretto M, Eisenberger NI
|2012 Apr 15
|Adolescent, Brain, Female, Functional Neuroimaging, Humans, Male, Nerve Net, Socioeconomic Factors, Theory of Mind, Young Adult
The current research explored the neural mechanisms linking social status to perceptions of the social world. Two fMRI studies provide converging evidence that individuals lower in social status are more likely to engage neural circuitry often involved in 'mentalizing' or thinking about others' thoughts and feelings. Study 1 found that college students' perception of their social status in the university community was related to neural activity in the mentalizing network (e.g., DMPFC, MPFC, precuneus/PCC) while encoding social information, with lower social status predicting greater neural activity in this network. Study 2 demonstrated that socioeconomic status, an objective indicator of global standing, predicted adolescents' neural activity during the processing of threatening faces, with individuals lower in social status displaying greater activity in the DMPFC, previously associated with mentalizing, and the amygdala, previously associated with emotion/salience processing. These studies demonstrate that social status is fundamentally and neurocognitively linked to how people process and navigate their social worlds.
|PubMed Central ID
|P41 RR013642 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
R90 DA023422 / DA / NIDA NIH HHS / United States
RR00865 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
RR12169 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
RR13642 / RR / NCRR NIH HHS / United States
T32 MH15760 / MH / NIMH NIH HHS / United States