Neurochemistry of impulsiveness and aggression
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Psychiatr Pol 2013;47(1):103-115
Aggression is the most frequent social reaction among animals and men, and plays an important role in survival of the fittest. The change of social conditions in the course of development of human civilisation rendered some forms of aggression counter-adaptive, but the neurobiological mechanism of expression of aggression have not fundamentally changed in the last stages of human evolution. The two different kinds of aggression: emotional, serving mainly as a threat, and rational, predatory, serving for the attainment of goal in the most effective way, have different anatomical and neurobiological background and reciprocally inhibit each other. Aggression is modulated by several neurotransmitter and hormonal systems, of which the key role is seemingly played by testosterone, a hormone involved in domination behaviour, and serotonin, whose deficit results in increased impulsiveness.
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