November 11, 2019

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The connection between asocial behaviour and biology

 

As science has shown, the structure and appearance of the face is shaped by individual biology and teaches about the genetic quality, hormonal balance, health status, and containing the information required for the person to know how to act against those who standing in front of him, to reproduce and survive for generations. 

 

Is it possible to identify social behavior through the structure of the face?

 

The prevalence of violence and criminality in societies around the world has prompted researchers to look for biological signs that predict and cause this behaviour. The progress of neurochemistry, biology, imaging technology, and other fields of science have shown that many mental disorders such as violence, delinquency, connected to disruption of brain activity due to genetic changes and chemical imbalances.

 

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, since Lombroso who was considered the father of modern criminology, researchers from various disciplines have attempted to find the characteristics of potential criminals. Many studies have been made over the past two decades, indicate that there are biological risk factors that significantly increase the likelihood of people committing crime and violence during their life, such as genetics and biology[i].

 

Behavior genetics (BG) is a field that examines the genetic effects on human behavior. Behavioral geneticists working hard to identify the specific genes involved in human behavior. There are evidences that almost all the behaviors studied are under significant influence of the genes, and the effect tends to increase as we grow up, it was also found that human behavior is influenced by a large number of genes[ii].

An example of a number of genes that have been associated with criminal behavior

 

Warrior-gene" MAOA"

 

It is a gene that controls the enzyme activity and is responsible for releasing chemicals to the brain, including dopamine and serotonin. It is called "Monoamine Oxidase A” or "MAOA". In recent years scientists have found a connection between the MAOA gene low-activity and violent behaviour, therefore the nickname was given to this gene called "warrior gene". The MAOA gene has been proven to be an important predictor of antisocial behaviour[iii].

 

Studies indicate that the low activity variation of the MAOA gene causes a risk of mental disorders related to anti-social characteristics, aggression, violence, and increased risk of committing a crime. The reason, according to the researchers, is that the MAOA gene breaks down chemical substances in the brain that are involved in several aspects of a person's behavior and aggression[iv].

 

In addition, it was found that there is a connection between lack of MAOA with impulsive aggression because of a genetic mutation. Types of behavior that occurred include impulsive aggression, arson, rape attempts, and exhibitionism[v].

 

CDH-13

A connection was found between genotype CDH13 and impulsive violent behaviour[vi].

Dat1 gene

Studies have found that a specific version of gene transporter 1 (DAT1) of dopamine contributed to delinquent behavior[vii].

 

DRD2 gene

The researchers also found that DRD2 was a risk factor for violent delinquency[viii].

Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) + Androgen receptors (AR)

It was found that the variants of the Androgen receptor gene (AR) and gene catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMPT) an important role in aspects of emotional and social behavior. It was found that mental behavior has a genetic basis and delinquent behavior is behavior that directly affected by several genes[ix], as well hormones have a connection to criminal behavior.

 

Hormones

Studies have found that people with high levels of testosterone are more violent and aggressive. The researchers found a positive connection between testosterone and aggression in both men and women[x]. Testosterone has a positive correlation with aggression and crime[xi].

 

A combination of genes and hormones

Genotype MAOA and testosterone may have an interactive effect on the antisocial behavior of adolescents and adults[xii]. The male hormone testosterone exacerbates even more the behavior of men who carry the MAOA mutation.

 

The unconscious system affects the decisions

Daniel Kahneman (Nobel Prize laureate in economics) argues that the unconscious system (System 1, as Kahneman called her) affects the conscious one (System 2, as Kahneman called her), and not only does some of the thinking not under our control, it turns out that the unconscious system influences the controlled decisions and the awareness. When biology belongs to the unconscious "system 2" and causes to the behaviors[xiii].

 

Facial Structure

The human face is an array of physical characteristics that make each of us unique and distinct.

As we already mentioned in the previous articles:   

The correlation between biology and facial appearance

Attractiveness, Beauty and Everything in between

Faces and first impressions

The evolutionary roots of decision making

 

Research by Facetrom company

Machine learning analysis that was conducted by Facetrom - which specializes in predicting the behavior of people by facial structure, Facetrom examined the technology in more than 1M individual, a clear and significant distinction was found more than 90% between the group of criminals and the non-criminal group.

 

Based on all the various studies, it has been shown that behaviors are influenced by the biological structure, as well as the facial structure is affected by the biological structure. Because of this, the behaviors that are affected by the biological structure will be reflected in the facial structure.

 

 

 

[i] Peskin, Melissa, Yu Gao, Andrea L. Glenn, Anna Rudo-Hutt, Yaling Yang, and Adrian Raine. 2013. Biology and Crime. The Oxford Handbook of Criminological Theory. Cullen, Francis T. and Pamela Wilcox (eds.). New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 22-39

 

[ii] Dick, Danielle; Rose, Richard (2002). "Behavior Genetics: What's New? What's Next". Current Directions in Psychological Science (11): 70–74

 

[iii] Dick, Danielle; Rose, Richard; Kaprio, Jaakko (2006). "The next challenge for psychiatric genetics: characterizing the risk associated with identified genes". Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 18 (4): 223

 

McGuffin P, Riley B, Plomin R. Toward behavioral genomics. Science. 2001;291:p. 1232–1249.[PubMed]

 

[iv] Williams LM, Gatt JM, Kuan SA, et al. A polymorphism of the MAOA gene is associated with emotional brain markers and personality traits on an antisocial index. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2009;34(7):1797–1809.

 

[v] Brunner HG, Nelen M, Breakefield XO, Ropers HH, van Oost BA (1993). Abnormal behavior associated with a point mutation in the structural gene for monoamine oxidase A. Science 262: 578–580.

 

[vi]   Tiihonen J, et al "Genetic background of extreme violent behavior" Mol       Psych 2014; DOI: 10.1038/mp.2014.130.

 

[vii] The Jackson Laboratory. (2017). THE GENETICS OF VIOLENT BEHAVIOR. [online] Available at: https://www.jax.org/news-and-insights/jax-blog/2015/december/the-genetics-of-violent-behavior# [Accessed 4 May 2017].

 

[viii] The Jackson Laboratory. (2017). THE GENETICS OF VIOLENT BEHAVIOR. [online] Available at: https://www.jax.org/news-and-insights/jax-blog/2015/december/the-genetics-of-violent-behavior# [Accessed 4 May 2017].

 

[ix] Gogos JA, Morgan M, Luine V, Santha M, Ogawa S, et al. (1998) Catechol-O-methyltransferase-deficient mice exhibit sexually dimorphic changes in catecholamine levels and behavior. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 95: 9991–9996.

 

[x] Denson, TF., SM O'Dean, KR Blake, JR Beames. (2018) Aggression in Women: Behavior, Brain, and Hormones. Frontiers in behavioral neuroscience 12, 81

 

[xi] Scerbo AS, Kolko DJ (1994). Salivary testosterone and cortisol in disruptive children: relationship to aggressive, hyperactive, and internalizing behaviors. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 33: 1174–1184.

 

[xii]  R.L. Sjöberg, F. Ducci, C. Barr, et al. A non-additive interaction of a functional MAO-A VNTR and testosterone predicts antisocial behavior, Neuropsychopharmacology, 33 (2008), pp. 425-430

 

[xiii] Daniel Kahneman,Rationality, Fairness, Happiness - Selected Writings (2005).Maya Bar-Hillel

 

 

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