Researchers at University College London look to have taken a slightly unconventional approach in their studies on fear, with the BBC reporting that they've crafted a "Pac-Man
-like" game that boasts the added risk of electric shock. Apparently, volunteers play the game while an MRI scanner monitors them, moving a blue triangle through a 2D maze while trying to avoid a red dot "predator." If that dot catches them, they receive an electric shock. As that danger neared , the researchers found that players stopped using their their prefrontal cortex in their forebrain and instead relied on their midbrain area, which controls "gut-level reflexes." At least that's what they're saying. We have a sneaking suspicion it may all just be an elaborate trick the researchers play on freshman students.
[Via The Inquirer