Brain structure can anticipate people's risk-taking attitude

A new study has claimed that the size of the parietal cortex in the brain could help predict the risk-taking spectrum of people.

Washington: A new study has claimed that the size of the parietal cortex in the brain could help predict the risk-taking spectrum of people.

Led by Yale School of Medicine's assistant professor Ifat Levy, the team found that those with larger volume in a particular part of the parietal cortex were willing to take more risks than those with less volume in this part of the brain.

Study participants included young adult men and women from the northeastern United States. Participants made a series of choices between monetary lotteries that varied in their degree of risk, and the research team conducted standard anatomical MRI brain scans. The results were first obtained in a group of 28 participants, and then confirmed in a second, independent, group of 33 participants.

Based on the findings, they could use millions of existing medical brains scans to assess risk attitudes in populations, which could also help in explaining differences in risk attitudes based in part on structural brain differences.

The findings are published in The Journal of Neuroscience.

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