This report contains details of all articles in PubMed that are linked to Grant Wellcome Trust - 086041.

Grant Report Wellcome Trust - 086041 as

Funder
Wellcome Trust
Grant ID
086041
Dates
{not available}
Grant Type
{not available}
Stream
{not available}
Grant Amount
{not available}
 
Project Title
The Oxford Centre for Neuroethics.
Institution
{not available}

 by  

1

Europe PMC

Psychopharmacology (Berl)  2015 8; 232(16): 2951-2958

PMID: 25899791 | PMCID: PMC4513220

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The beta-adrenoceptor antagonist propranolol is known to reduce peripheral and central activity of noradrenaline. A recent study found that intervention with propranolol diminished negative implicit racial bias.The current study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in order to determine the neural correlates of this effect. Healthy volunteers (N = 40) of white ethnic origin received a single oral dose (40 mg) of propranolol, in a randomised, double-blind, parallel group, placebo-controlled design, before viewing unfamiliar faces of same and other race.We found significantly reduced activity in the fusiform gyrus and thalamus following propranolol to out-group faces only. Additionally, propranolol lowered the implicit attitude score, without affecting explicit prejudice measure.These findings suggest that noradrenaline pathways might modulate racial bias by acting on the processing of categorisation in the fusiform gyrus.

2

Europe PMC

Mind Lang  2015 6; 30(3): 320-344

PMID: 26113753 | PMCID: PMC4471880

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The extensive involvement of nonconscious processes in human behaviour has led some to suggest that consciousness is much less important for the control of action than we might think. In this article I push against this trend, developing an understanding of conscious control that is sensitive to our best models of overt (that is, bodily) action control. Further, I assess the cogency of various zombie challenges-challenges that seek to demote the importance of conscious control for human agency. I argue that though nonconscious contributions to action control are evidently robust, these challenges are overblown.

3

Europe PMC

Australas J Philos  2015 4; 93(2): 335-351

PMID: 26321765 | PMCID: PMC4530608

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Common-sense folk psychology and mainstream philosophy of action agree about decisions: these are under an agent's direct control, and are thus intentional actions for which agents can be held responsible. I begin this paper by presenting a problem for this view. In short, since the content of the motivational attitudes that drive deliberation and decision remains open-ended until the moment of decision, it is unclear how agents can be thought to exercise control over what they decide at the moment of deciding. I note that this problem might motivate a non-actional view of deciding-a view that decisions are not actions, but are instead passive events of intention acquisition. For without an understanding of how an agent might exercise control over what is decided at the moment of deciding, we lack a good reason for maintaining commitment to an actional view of deciding. However, I then offer the required account of how agents exercise control over decisions at the moment of deciding. Crucial to this account is an understanding of the relation of practical deliberation to deciding, an understanding of skilled deliberative activity, and the role of attention in the mental action of deciding.

4

Europe PMC

Erkenntnis  2015 4; 80(2): 381-402

PMID: 26345713 | PMCID: PMC4558950

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The rise of experimental philosophy (x-phi) has placed metaphilosophical questions, particularly those concerning concepts, at the center of philosophical attention. X-phi offers empirically rigorous methods for identifying conceptual content, but what exactly it contributes towards evaluating conceptual content remains unclear. We show how x-phi complements Rudolf Carnap's underappreciated methodology for concept determination, explication. This clarifies and extends x-phi's positive philosophical import, and also exhibits explication's broad appeal. But there is a potential problem: Carnap's account of explication was limited to empirical and logical concepts, but many concepts of interest to philosophers (experimental and otherwise) are essentially normative. With formal epistemology as a case study, we show how x-phi assisted explication can apply to normative domains.

5

Europe PMC

Bioethics  2015 3; 29(3): 145-152

PMID: 24547807 | PMCID: PMC4347020

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Jurgen Habermas has argued that carrying out pre-natal germline enhancements would be inimical to the future child's autonomy. In this article, I suggest that many of the objections that have been made against Habermas' arguments by liberals in the enhancement debate misconstrue his claims. To explain why, I begin by explaining how Habermas' view of personal autonomy confers particular importance to the agent's embodiment and social environment. In view of this, I explain that it is possible to draw two arguments against germline enhancements from Habermas' thought. I call these arguments 'the argument from negative freedom' and 'the argument from natality'. Although I argue that many of the common liberal objections to Habermas are not applicable when his arguments are properly understood, I go on to suggest ways in which supporters of enhancement might appropriately respond to Habermas' arguments.

6

Europe PMC

J Med Ethics  2015 3; 41(3): 234-239

PMID: 24763219 | PMCID: PMC4345516

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Parents who are facing decisions about life-sustaining treatment for their seriously ill or dying child are supported by their child's doctors and nurses. They also frequently seek other information sources to help them deal with the medical and ethical questions that arise. This might include written or web-based information. As part of a project involving the development of such a resource to support parents facing difficult decisions, some ethical questions emerged. Should this information be presented in a strictly neutral fashion? Is it problematic if narratives, arguments or perspectives appear to favour stopping over continuing life-sustaining treatment? Similar questions might arise with written materials about decisions for adults, or for other ethically contentious decisions. This paper explores the meaning of 'balance' in information provision, focusing particularly on written information about life-sustaining treatment for children. We contrast the norm of non-directiveness in genetic counselling with the shared decision-making model often endorsed in end-of-life care. We review evidence that parents do not find neutrality from medical professionals helpful in discussions. We argue that balance in written information must be understood in the light of the aim of the document, the most common situation in which it will be used, and any existing biases. We conclude with four important strategies for ensuring that non-neutral information is nevertheless ethically appropriate.

7

Europe PMC

Philos Compass  2015 3; 10(3): 197-207

PMID: 26146511 | PMCID: PMC4479978

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Here, I review work from three lines of research in cognitive science often taken to threaten free will and moral responsibility. This work concerns conscious deciding, the experience of acting, and the role of largely unnoticed situational influences on behavior. Whether this work in fact threatens free will and moral responsibility depends on how we ought to interpret it, and depends as well on the nature of free and responsible behavior. I discuss different ways this work has been interpreted and argue that though work on conscious deciding and the experience of acting presents no real threat, work on situational influences is more difficult to dismiss. This work may present a real threat, and it may require us to revise our commonsense understanding of free and responsible behavior. But this work may also present ways to augment free and responsible behavior. Determining whether and how advancing science threatens, enhances, or simply describes free will is an ongoing task for scientists and philosophers alike.

8

Europe PMC

Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed  2015 3; 100(2): F155-60

PMID: 25477313 | PMCID: PMC4345812

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Most deaths in severely brain-injured newborns in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) follow discussions and explicit decisions to limit life-sustaining treatment. There is little published information on such discussions. OBJECTIVE: To describe the prevalence, nature and outcome of treatment limitation discussions (TLDs) in critically ill newborns with severe brain injury. DESIGN: A retrospective statewide cohort study. SETTING: Two tertiary NICUs in South Australia. PATIENTS: Ventilated newborns with severe hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy and periventricular/intraventricular haemorrhage (P/IVH) admitted over a 6-year period from 2001 to 2006. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Short-term outcome (until hospital discharge) including presence and content of TLDs, early childhood mortality, school-age functional outcome. RESULTS: We identified 145 infants with severe brain injury; 78/145 (54%) infants had documented TLDs. Discussions were more common in infants with severe P/IVH or hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy (p<0.01). Fifty-six infants (39%) died prior to discharge, all following treatment limitation. The majority of deaths (41/56; 73%) occurred in physiologically stable infants. Of 78 infants with at least one documented TLD, 22 (28%) survived to discharge, most in the setting of explicit or inferred decisions to continue treatment. Half of long-term survivors after TLD (8/16, 50%) were severely impaired at follow-up. However, two-thirds of surviving infants with TLD in the setting of unilateral P/IVH had mild or no disability. CONCLUSIONS: Some critically ill newborn infants with brain injury survive following TLDs between their parents and physicians. Outcome in this group of infants provides valuable information about the integrity of prognostication in NICU, and should be incorporated into counselling.

9

Europe PMC

Bioethics  2015 2; 29(2): 133-143

PMID: 23906367 | PMCID: PMC4278839

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

This article draws attention to several common mistakes in thinking about biomedical enhancement, mistakes that are made even by some supporters of enhancement. We illustrate these mistakes by examining objections that John Harris has recently raised against the use of pharmacological interventions to directly modulate moral decision-making. We then apply these lessons to other influential figures in the debate about enhancement. One upshot of our argument is that many considerations presented as powerful objections to enhancement are really strong considerations in favour of biomedical enhancement, just in a different direction. Another upshot is that it is unfortunate that much of the current debate focuses on interventions that will radically transform normal human capacities. Such interventions are unlikely to be available in the near future, and may not even be feasible. But our argument shows that the enhancement project can still have a radical impact on human life even if biomedical enhancement operated entirely within the normal human range.

10

Europe PMC

J Med Philos  2015 2; 40(1): 83-101

PMID: 25503607 | PMCID: PMC4288933

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In this paper, I argue that deceptive placebo use can be morally permissible, on the grounds that the deception involved in the prescription of deceptive placebos can differ in kind to the sorts of deception that undermine personal autonomy. In order to argue this, I shall first delineate two accounts of why deception is inimical to autonomy. On these accounts, deception is understood to be inimical to the deceived agent's autonomy because it either involves subjugating the deceived agent's will to another's authority or because it precludes the agent from acting effectively in pursuit of their ends. I shall argue that providing an agent with false beliefs is not inimical to their autonomy if they are only able to effectively pursue their autonomously chosen ends by virtue of holding those particular false beliefs. Finally, I show that deceptive placebo use need only involve this latter sort of deception.

11

Europe PMC

Cognition  2015 1; 134: 193-209

PMID: 25460392 | PMCID: PMC4259516

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

A growing body of research has focused on so-called 'utilitarian' judgments in moral dilemmas in which participants have to choose whether to sacrifice one person in order to save the lives of a greater number. However, the relation between such 'utilitarian' judgments and genuine utilitarian impartial concern for the greater good remains unclear. Across four studies, we investigated the relationship between 'utilitarian' judgment in such sacrificial dilemmas and a range of traits, attitudes, judgments and behaviors that either reflect or reject an impartial concern for the greater good of all. In Study 1, we found that rates of 'utilitarian' judgment were associated with a broadly immoral outlook concerning clear ethical transgressions in a business context, as well as with sub-clinical psychopathy. In Study 2, we found that 'utilitarian' judgment was associated with greater endorsement of rational egoism, less donation of money to a charity, and less identification with the whole of humanity, a core feature of classical utilitarianism. In Studies 3 and 4, we found no association between 'utilitarian' judgments in sacrificial dilemmas and characteristic utilitarian judgments relating to assistance to distant people in need, self-sacrifice and impartiality, even when the utilitarian justification for these judgments was made explicit and unequivocal. This lack of association remained even when we controlled for the antisocial element in 'utilitarian' judgment. Taken together, these results suggest that there is very little relation between sacrificial judgments in the hypothetical dilemmas that dominate current research, and a genuine utilitarian approach to ethics.

12

Europe PMC

Semin Fetal Neonatal Med  2014 10; 19(5): 306-311

PMID: 25200733 | PMCID: PMC4339700

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In clinical practice, and in the medical literature, severe congenital malformations such as trisomy 18, anencephaly, and renal agenesis are frequently referred to as 'lethal' or as 'incompatible with life'. However, there is no agreement about a definition of lethal malformations, nor which conditions should be included in this category. Review of outcomes for malformations commonly designated 'lethal' reveals that prolonged survival is possible, even if rare. This article analyses the concept of lethal malformations and compares it to the problematic concept of 'futility'. We recommend avoiding the term 'lethal' and suggest that counseling should focus on salient prognostic features instead. For conditions with a high chance of early death or profound impairment in survivors despite treatment, perinatal and neonatal palliative care would be ethical. However, active obstetric and neonatal management, if desired, may also sometimes be appropriate.

13

Europe PMC

Philos Stud  2014 9; 170(3): 395-411

PMID: 25653458 | PMCID: PMC4313074

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Necessarily, if S lacks the ability to exercise (some degree of) control, S is not an agent. If S is not an agent, S cannot act intentionally, responsibly, or rationally, nor can S possess or exercise free will. In spite of the obvious importance of control, however, no general account of control exists. In this paper I reflect on the nature of control itself. I develop accounts of control's exercise and control's possession that illuminate what it is for degrees of control-that is, the degree of control an agent possesses or exercises in a given circumstance-to vary. Finally, I demonstrate the usefulness of the account on offer by showing how it generates a solution to a long-standing problem for causalist theories of action, namely, the problem of deviant causation.

14

Europe PMC

Soc Theory Pract  2014 7; 40(3): 499-527

PMID: 24882886 | PMCID: PMC4037784

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Opponents of biomedical enhancement frequently adopt what Allen Buchanan has called the Personal Goods Assumption. On this assumption, the benefits of biomedical enhancement will accrue primarily to those individuals who undergo enhancements, not to wider society. Buchanan has argued that biomedical enhancements might in fact have substantial social benefits by increasing productivity. We outline another way in which enhancements might benefit wider society: by augmenting civic virtue and thus improving the functioning of our political communities. We thus directly confront critics of biomedical enhancement who argue that it will lead to a loss of social cohesion and a breakdown in political life.

15

Europe PMC

Judgm Decis Mak  2014 7; 9(4): 303-316

PMID: 25279024 | PMCID: PMC4179876

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

We describe the "evaluability bias": the tendency to weight the importance of an attribute in proportion to its ease of evaluation. We propose that the evaluability bias influences decision making in the context of charitable giving: people tend to have a strong preference for charities with low overhead ratios (lower administrative expenses) but not for charities with high cost-effectiveness (greater number of saved lives per dollar), because the former attribute is easier to evaluate than the latter. In line with this hypothesis, we report the results of four studies showing that, when presented with a single charity, people are willing to donate more to a charity with low overhead ratio, regardless of cost-effectiveness. However, when people are presented with two charities simultaneously-thereby enabling comparative evaluation-they base their donation behavior on cost-effectiveness (Study 1). This suggests that people primarily value cost-effectiveness but manifest the evaluability bias in cases where they find it difficult to evaluate. However, people seem also to value a low overhead ratio for its own sake (Study 2). The evaluability bias effect applies to charities of different domains (Study 3). We also show that overhead ratio is easier to evaluate when its presentation format is a ratio, suggesting an inherent reference point that allows meaningful interpretation (Study 4).

16

Europe PMC

Philos Psychiatr Psychol  2014 6; 21(2): 111-125

PMID: 25892904 | PMCID: PMC4398979

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

A number of concerns have been raised about the possible future use of pharmaceuticals designed to enhance cognitive, affective, and motivational processes, particularly where the aim is to produce morally better decisions or behavior. In this article, we draw attention to what is arguably a more worrying possibility: that pharmaceuticals currently in widespread therapeutic use are already having unintended effects on these processes, and thus on moral decision making and morally significant behavior. We review current evidence on the moral effects of three widely used drugs or drug types: (i) propranolol, (ii) selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, and (iii) drugs that effect oxytocin physiology. This evidence suggests that the alterations to moral decision making and behavior caused by these agents may have important and difficult-to-evaluate consequences, at least at the population level. We argue that the moral effects of these and other widely used pharmaceuticals warrant further empirical research and ethical analysis.

17

Europe PMC

J Ethics  2014 6; 18(2): 171-185

PMID: 25009442 | PMCID: PMC4083267

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In Minds, Brains, and Law, Michael Pardo and Dennis Patterson argue that current attempts to use neuroscience to inform the theory and practice of law founder because they are built on confused conceptual foundations. Proponents of neurolaw attribute to the brain or to its parts psychological properties that belong only to people; this mistake vitiates many of the claims they make. Once neurolaw is placed on a sounder conceptual footing, Pardo and Patterson claim, we will see that its more dramatic claims are false or meaningless, though it might be able to provide inductive evidence for particular less dramatic claims (that a defendant may be lying, or lacks control over their behavior, for instance). In response, I argue that the central conceptual confusions identified by Pardo and Patterson are not confusions at all. Though some of the claims made by its proponents are hasty and sometimes they are confused, there are no conceptual barriers to attributing psychological properties to brain states. Neuroscience can play a role in producing evidence that is more reliable than subjective report or behavior; it therefore holds out the possibility of dramatically altering our self-conception as agents and thereby the law.

18

Europe PMC

Philos Psychol  2014 6; 27(3): 351-367

PMID: 24812441 | PMCID: PMC4003860

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The recent debate over the moral responsibility of psychopaths has centered on whether, or in what sense, they understand moral requirements. In this paper, I argue that even if they do understand what morality requires, the content of their actions is not of the right kind to justify full-blown blame. I advance two independent justifications of this claim. First, I argue that if the psychopath comes to know what morality requires via a route that does not involve a proper appreciation of what it means to cause another harm or distress, the content of violations of rules against harm will be of a lower grade than the content of similar actions by normal individuals. Second, I argue that in order to intend a harm to a person-that is, to intend the distinctive kind of harm that can only befall a person-it is necessary to understand what personhood is and what makes it valuable. The psychopath's deficits with regard to mental time travel ensure that s/he cannot intend this kind of harm.

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Europe PMC

J Med Ethics  2014 5; 40(5): 293-300

PMID: 22318413 | PMCID: PMC3995287

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

It is universally accepted in bioethics that doctors and other medical professionals have an obligation to procure the informed consent of their patients. Informed consent is required because patients have the moral right to autonomy in furthering the pursuit of their most important goals. In the present work, it is argued that evidence from psychology shows that human beings are subject to a number of biases and limitations as reasoners, which can be expected to lower the quality of their decisions and which therefore make it more difficult for them to pursue their most important goals by giving informed consent. It is further argued that patient autonomy is best promoted by constraining the informed consent procedure. By limiting the degree of freedom patients have to choose, the good that informed consent is supposed to protect can be promoted.

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Europe PMC

Bioethics  2014 3; 28(3): 127-137

PMID: 22762352 | PMCID: PMC3465577

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Ethical analyses, professional guidelines and legal decisions support the equivalence thesis for life-sustaining treatment: if it is ethical to withhold treatment, it would be ethical to withdraw the same treatment. In this paper we explore reasons why the majority of medical professionals disagree with the conclusions of ethical analysis. Resource allocation is considered by clinicians to be a legitimate reason to withhold but not to withdraw intensive care treatment. We analyse five arguments in favour of non-equivalence, and find only relatively weak reasons to restrict rationing to withholding treatment. On the contrary, resource allocation provides a strong argument in favour of equivalence: non-equivalence causes preventable death in critically ill patients. We outline two proposals for increasing equivalence in practice: (1) reduction of the mortality threshold for treatment withdrawal, (2) time-limited trials of intensive care. These strategies would help to move practice towards more rational treatment limitation decisions.

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Europe PMC

AJOB Neurosci  2014 3; 5(2): 35-37

PMID: 25009758 | PMCID: PMC4083257

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Leonard Berlin reports that neuroscientific data play an increasing role in court. They have been used to argue that criminals are not morally responsible for their behaviour because their brains are 'faulty', and there is evidence that such data lead judges to pass more lenient sentences. I raise two concerns about the view that neuroscience can show criminals not to be morally responsible: That the brains of (say) violent criminals differ from most people's brains does not straightforwardly show that violent criminals are less morally responsible. Behavioral states arise inter alia from brain states, and since violent criminals' behavioral states differ from those of most people, it is unsurprising that violent criminals' brains should differ from most people's brains. This no more shows violent criminals to have diminished moral responsibility than differences between the brains of cheerful and uncheerful people show either group to have diminished moral responsibility.Those who view brain abnormalities as evidence of reduced moral responsibility rely on the assumptions that people with normal brains have free will and that we know what sorts of brain activity undermine free will. However, both of these assumptions are highly controversial. As a result, neuroscience is not a reliable source of information about moral responsibility. I conclude that, until we settle whether and under what circumstances brain activity is incompatible with free will, neuroscience cannot tell us anything useful about criminal accountability.

22

Europe PMC

J Law Biosci  2014 3; 1(1): 68-93

PMID: 25243073 | PMCID: PMC4168724

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

This article presents a model for regulating cognitive enhancement devices (CEDs). Recently, it has become very easy for individuals to purchase devices which directly modulate brain function. For example, transcranial direct current stimulators are increasingly being produced and marketed online as devices for cognitive enhancement. Despite posing risks in a similar way to medical devices, devices that do not make any therapeutic claims do not have to meet anything more than basic product safety standards. We present the case for extending existing medical device legislation to cover CEDs. Medical devices and CEDs operate by the same or similar mechanisms and pose the same or similar risks. This fact coupled with the arbitrariness of the line between treatment and enhancement count in favour of regulating these devices in the same way. In arguing for this regulatory model, the paper highlights potential challenges to its implementation, and suggests solutions.

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Europe PMC

Biol Philos  2014; 29: 337-355

PMID: 24764610 | PMCID: PMC3991824

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Addiction is almost universally held to be characterized by a loss of control over drug-seeking and consuming behavior. But the actions of addicts, even of those who seem to want to abstain from drugs, seem to be guided by reasons. In this paper, I argue that we can explain this fact, consistent with continuing to maintain that addiction involves a loss of control, by understanding addiction as involving an oscillation between conflicting judgments. I argue that the dysfunction of the mesolimbic dopamine system that typifies addictions causes the generation of a mismatch between the top-down model of the world that reflects the judgment that the addict ought to refrain from drugs, and bottom-up input caused by cues predictive of drug availability. This constitutes a powerful pressure toward revising the judgment and thereby attenuating the prediction error. But the new model is not stable, and shifts under the pressure of bottom-up inputs in different contexts; hence the oscillation of all-things-considered judgment. Evidence from social psychology is adduced, to suggest that a similar process may be involved in ordinary cases of weakness of will.

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Europe PMC

Neuroethics  2014; 7: 1-9

PMID: 24600485 | PMCID: PMC3933752

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Whether patients in the vegetative state (VS), minimally conscious state (MCS) or the clinically related locked-in syndrome (LIS) should be kept alive is a matter of intense controversy. This study aimed to examine the moral attitudes of lay people to these questions, and the values and other factors that underlie these attitudes.One hundred ninety-nine US residents completed a survey using the online platform Mechanical Turk, comprising demographic questions, agreement with treatment withdrawal from each of the conditions, agreement with a series of ethical principles and three personality tests.More supported treatment withdrawal from VS (40.2 % agreed, 17.6 % disagreed) than MCS (20.6 %, 41.2 %) or LIS (25.3 %, 35.8 %). Agreement with treatment withdrawal was negatively correlated with religiosity (r = -0.272, P < 0.001), though showed no significant relationship with need for cognition or empathy, and only a partial association with utilitarian judgment in a standard moral dilemma. Support for treatment withdrawal was most strongly associated with endorsement of the importance of patient autonomy, dignity, suffering, best interests. Distributive justice was not given significant weight by most. Importantly, agreement with treatment withdrawal was noticeably higher when considered from a first as opposed to third person perspective for VS (Z = -6.056, P < 0.001), MCS (Z = -6.746, P < 0.001) and LIS (Z = -6.681, P < 0.001).Lay attitudes to withdrawal of treatment in brain damaged patients are largely shaped by values similar to those central to the secular ethical debate. Neither traditional values such as the sanctity of life nor utilitarian values relating to resource allocation seem to play a central role. Far greater weight is given to autonomy, which may explain why participants were far more willing to endorse withdrawal of treatment when the issue was presented in the first person, or in relation to a concrete case involving a patient's explicit wishes. Surveys focusing on abstract cases presented in the third person may not provide an accurate picture of lay attitudes to these critical ethical questions.

25

Europe PMC

Neuroethics  2014; 7: 123-136

PMID: 25045410 | PMCID: PMC4070419

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Some have objected to human enhancement on the grounds that it violates the autonomy of the enhanced. These objections, however, overlook the interesting possibility that autonomy itself could be enhanced. How, exactly, to enhance autonomy is a difficult problem due to the numerous and diverse accounts of autonomy in the literature. Existing accounts of autonomy enhancement rely on narrow and controversial conceptions of autonomy. However, we identify one feature of autonomy common to many mainstream accounts: reasoning ability. Autonomy can then be enhanced by improving people's reasoning ability, in particular through cognitive enhancement; given how valuable autonomy is usually taken to be, this gives us extra reason to pursue such cognitive enhancements. Moreover, autonomy-based objections will be especially weak against such enhancements. As we will argue, those who are worried that enhancements will inhibit people's autonomy should actually embrace those enhancements that will improve autonomy.

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Europe PMC

Front Hum Neurosci  2014; 8: 953

PMID: 25566011 | PMCID: PMC4270184

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Davis (2014) called for "extreme caution" in the use of non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) to treat neurological disorders in children, due to gaps in scientific knowledge. We are sympathetic to his position. However, we must also address the ethical implications of applying this technology to minors. Compensatory trade-offs associated with NIBS present a challenge to its use in children, insofar as these trade-offs have the effect of limiting the child's future options. The distinction between treatment and enhancement has some normative force here. As the intervention moves away from being a treatment toward being an enhancement-and thus toward a more uncertain weighing of the benefits, risks, and costs-considerations of the child's best interests (as judged by the parents) diminish, and the need to protect the child's (future) autonomy looms larger. NIBS for enhancement involving trade-offs should therefore be delayed, if possible, until the child reaches a state of maturity and can make an informed, personal decision. NIBS for treatment, by contrast, is permissible insofar as it can be shown to be at least as safe and effective as currently approved treatments, which are themselves justified on a best interests standard.

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Europe PMC

AJOB Neurosci  2014 1; 5(1): 4-12

PMID: 24587962 | PMCID: PMC3932804

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Our understanding of the neurochemical bases of human love and attachment, as well as of the genetic, epigenetic, hormonal, and experiential factors that conspire to shape an individual's sexual orientation, is increasing exponentially. This research raises the vexing possibility that we may one day be equipped to modify such variables directly, allowing for the creation of "high-tech" conversion therapies or other suspect interventions. In this article, we discuss the ethics surrounding such a possibility, and call for the development of legal and procedural safeguards for protecting vulnerable children from the application of such technology. We also consider the more difficult case of voluntary, adult "conversion" and argue that in rare cases, such attempts might be permissible under strict conditions.

28

Europe PMC

Front Syst Neurosci  2014; 8: 195

PMID: 25360088 | PMCID: PMC4197737

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Research into cognitive biases that impair human judgment has mostly been applied to the area of economic decision-making. Ethical decision-making has been comparatively neglected. Since ethical decisions often involve very high individual as well as collective stakes, analyzing how cognitive biases affect them can be expected to yield important results. In this theoretical article, we consider the ethical debate about cognitive enhancement (CE) and suggest a number of cognitive biases that are likely to affect moral intuitions and judgments about CE: status quo bias, loss aversion, risk aversion, omission bias, scope insensitivity, nature bias, and optimistic bias. We find that there are more well-documented biases that are likely to cause irrational aversion to CE than biases in the opposite direction. This suggests that common attitudes about CE are predominantly negatively biased. Within this new perspective, we hope that subsequent research will be able to elaborate this hypothesis and develop effective de-biasing techniques that can help increase the rationality of the public CE debate and thus improve our ethical decision-making.

29

Europe PMC

Monash Bioeth Rev  2014; 32(1-2): 43-62

PMID: 25434064 | PMCID: PMC4210721

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Disability might be relevant to decisions about life support in intensive care in several ways. It might affect the chance of treatment being successful, or a patient's life expectancy with treatment. It may affect whether treatment is in a patient's best interests. However, even if treatment would be of overall benefit it may be unaffordable and consequently unable to be provided. In this paper we will draw on the example of neonatal intensive care, and ask whether or when it is justified to ration life-saving treatment on the basis of disability. We argue that predicted disability is relevant both indirectly and directly to rationing decisions.

30

Europe PMC

Ethics  2014 1; 124(2): 327-341

PMID: 24711673 | PMCID: PMC3975828

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Lazari-Radek and Singer argue that evolutionary considerations can resolve Sidgwick's dualism of practical reason, because such considerations debunk moral views that give weight to self-interested or partial considerations, but cannot threaten the principle Universal Benevolence. I argue that even if we grant these claims, this appeal to evolution is ultimately self-defeating. Lazari-Radek and Singer face a dilemma. Either their evolutionary argument against partial morality succeeds, but then we need to also give up our conviction that suffering is bad; or there is a way to defend this conviction, but then their argument against partiality fails. Utilitarians, I suggest, should resist the temptation to appeal to evolutionary debunking arguments.

31

Europe PMC

Think (Lond)  2014; 13(38): 7-12

PMID: 25309130 | PMCID: PMC4191624

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

"Neuroreductionism" is the tendency to reduce complex mental phenomena to brain states, confusing correlation for physical causation. In this paper, we illustrate the dangers of this popular neuro-fallacy, by looking at an example drawn from the media: a story about "hypoactive sexual desire disorder" in women. We discuss the role of folk dualism in perpetuating such a confusion, and draw some conclusions about the role of "brain scans" in our understanding of romantic love.

32

Europe PMC

Prenat Diagn  2014 1; 34(1): 42-49

PMID: 24122837 | PMCID: PMC3963474

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to explore the attitudes of obstetricians in Australia, New Zealand and the UK towards prenatally diagnosed trisomy 18 (T18). METHOD: Obstetricians were contacted by email and invited to participate in an anonymous electronic survey. RESULTS: Survey responses were obtained from 1018/3717 (27%) practicing obstetricians/gynaecologists. Most (60%) had managed a case of T18 in the last 2 years. Eighty-five per cent believed that T18 was a 'lethal malformation', although 38% expected at least half of liveborn infants to survive for more than 1 week. Twenty-one per cent indicated that a vegetative existence was the best developmental outcome for surviving children. In a case of antenatally diagnosed T18, 95% of obstetricians would provide a mother with the option of termination. If requested, 99% would provide maternal-focused obstetric care (aimed at maternal wellbeing rather than fetal survival), whereas 80% would provide fetal-oriented obstetric care (to maximise fetal survival). Twenty-eight per cent would never discuss the option of caesarean; 21% would always discuss this option. Management options, attitudes and knowledge of T18 were associated with location, practice type, gender and religion of obstetricians. CONCLUSION: There is variability in obstetricians' attitudes towards T18, with significant implications for management of affected pregnancies.

33

Europe PMC

Front Syst Neurosci  2014; 8: 107

PMID: 24999320 | PMCID: PMC4052735

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

THERE ARE NUMEROUS WAYS PEOPLE CAN IMPROVE THEIR COGNITIVE CAPACITIES: good nutrition and regular exercise can produce long-term improvements across many cognitive domains, whilst commonplace stimulants such as coffee temporarily boost levels of alertness and concentration. Effects like these have been well-documented in the medical literature and they raise few (if any) ethical issues. More recently, however, clinical research has shown that the off-label use of some pharmaceuticals can, under certain conditions, have modest cognition-improving effects. Substances such as methylphenidate and modafinil can improve capacities such as working memory and concentration in some healthy individuals. Unlike their more mundane predecessors, these methods of "cognitive enhancement" are thought to raise a multitude of ethical issues. This paper presents the six principal ethical issues raised in relation to pharmacological cognitive enhancers (PCEs)-issues such as whether: (1) the medical safety-profile of PCEs justifies restricting or permitting their elective or required use; (2) the enhanced mind can be an "authentic" mind; (3) individuals might be coerced into using PCEs; (4), there is a meaningful distinction to be made between the treatment vs. enhancement effect of the same PCE; (5) unequal access to PCEs would have implications for distributive justice; and (6) PCE use constitutes cheating in competitive contexts. In reviewing the six principal issues, the paper discusses how neuroscientific research might help advance the ethical debate. In particular, the paper presents new arguments about the contribution neuroscience could make to debates about justice, fairness, and cheating, ultimately concluding that neuroscientific research into "personalized enhancement" will be essential if policy is to be truly informed and ethical. We propose an "ethical agenda" for neuroscientific research into PCEs.

34

Europe PMC

J Conscious Stud  2014 1; 21(1-2): 127-138

PMID: 24791144 | PMCID: PMC4001209

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

35

Europe PMC

Front Syst Neurosci  2014; 8: 12

PMID: 24550792 | PMCID: PMC3912453

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The enhancement debate in neuroscience and biomedical ethics tends to focus on the augmentation of certain capacities or functions: memory, learning, attention, and the like. Typically, the point of contention is whether these augmentative enhancements should be considered permissible for individuals with no particular "medical" disadvantage along any of the dimensions of interest. Less frequently addressed in the literature, however, is the fact that sometimes the diminishment of a capacity or function, under the right set of circumstances, could plausibly contribute to an individual's overall well-being: more is not always better, and sometimes less is more. Such cases may be especially likely, we suggest, when trade-offs in our modern environment have shifted since the environment of evolutionary adaptation. In this article, we introduce the notion of "diminishment as enhancement" and go on to defend a welfarist conception of enhancement. We show how this conception resolves a number of definitional ambiguities in the enhancement literature, and we suggest that it can provide a useful framework for thinking about the use of emerging neurotechnologies to promote human flourishing.

36

Europe PMC

Curr Opin Psychiatry  2013 9; 26(5): 474-484

PMID: 23880593 | PMCID: PMC3935449

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Well-functioning romantic relationships are important for long-term health and well being, but they are often difficult to sustain. This difficulty arises (in part) because of an underlying tension between our psychobiological natures, culture/environment, and modern love and relationship goals. One possible solution to this predicament is to intervene at the level of psychobiology, enhancing partners' interpersonal connection through neurochemical modulation. This article focuses on a single, promising biobehavioral sub-system for such intervention: the attachment system, based largely upon the expression of the neuropeptide oxytocin. Could the exogenous administration of oxytocin - under the right conditions - be used to facilitate relational or marital well being? RECENT FINDINGS: If so, it would require considerable forethought. Recent research complicates the popular image of oxytocin as a universal social enhancer or 'love hormone' and shows that it may exert a variety of different effects, at different dosages, on different people, under different circumstances. Accordingly, we discuss what is known about oxytocin, including its 'good' and 'bad' effects on human behavior and on higher-order functional processes. SUMMARY: Building upon animal-model, human preclinical, and clinical findings, we outline a proposal for the use of oxytocin in the therapeutic neuroenhancement of contemporary romantic relationships. Highlighting key targets for future research along the way, we then conclude by discussing some of the clinical and ethical considerations that would pertain to the implementation of this knowledge in applied settings.

37

PubMed

J Med Ethics  2013 9; 39(9): 557-558

PMID: 22942374

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

38

PubMed

J Med Ethics  2013 9; 39(9): 583-584

PMID: 22893528

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

I argue that Brierley et al are wrong to claim that parents who request futile treatment are acting against the interests of their child. A better ethical ground for withholding or withdrawing life-prolonging treatment is not that it is in the interests of the patient to die, but rather on grounds of the limitation of resources and the requirements of distributive justice. Put simply, not all treatment that might be in a person's interests must ethically be provided.

39

Europe PMC

Philos Compass  2013 5; 8(5): 496-509

PMID: 24563661 | PMCID: PMC3928558

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

This paper sets out a view about the explanatory role of representational content and advocates one approach to naturalising content - to giving a naturalistic account of what makes an entity a representation and in virtue of what it has the content it does. It argues for pluralism about the metaphysics of content and suggests that a good strategy is to ask the content question with respect to a variety of predictively successful information processing models in experimental psychology and cognitive neuroscience; and hence that data from psychology and cognitive neuroscience should play a greater role in theorising about the nature of content. Finally, the contours of the view are illustrated by drawing out and defending a surprising consequence: that individuation of vehicles of content is partly externalist.

40

Europe PMC

Cognition  2013 3; 126(3): 364-372

PMID: 23280149 | PMCID: PMC3629560

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Recent research on moral decision-making has suggested that many common moral judgments are based on immediate intuitions. However, some individuals arrive at highly counterintuitive utilitarian conclusions about when it is permissible to harm other individuals. Such utilitarian judgments have been attributed to effortful reasoning that has overcome our natural emotional aversion to harming others. Recent studies, however, suggest that such utilitarian judgments might also result from a decreased aversion to harming others, due to a deficit in empathic concern and social emotion. The present study investigated the neural basis of such indifference to harming using functional neuroimaging during engagement in moral dilemmas. A tendency to counterintuitive utilitarian judgment was associated both with 'psychoticism', a trait associated with a lack of empathic concern and antisocial tendencies, and with 'need for cognition', a trait reflecting preference for effortful cognition. Importantly, only psychoticism was also negatively correlated with activation in the subgenual cingulate cortex (SCC), a brain area implicated in empathic concern and social emotions such as guilt, during counterintuitive utilitarian judgments. Our findings suggest that when individuals reach highly counterintuitive utilitarian conclusions, this need not reflect greater engagement in explicit moral deliberation. It may rather reflect a lack of empathic concern, and diminished aversion to harming others.

41

Europe PMC

Bioethics  2013 3; 27(3): 124-131

PMID: 21797913 | PMCID: PMC3378470

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

We respond to a number of objections raised by John Harris in this journal to our argument that we should pursue genetic and other biological means of morally enhancing human beings (moral bioenhancement). We claim that human beings now have at their disposal means of wiping out life on Earth and that traditional methods of moral education are probably insufficient to achieve the moral enhancement required to ensure that this will not happen. Hence, we argue, moral bioenhancement should be sought and applied. We argue that cognitive enhancement and technological progress raise acute problems because it is easier to harm than to benefit. We address objections to this argument. We also respond to objections that moral bioenhancement: (1) interferes with freedom; (2) cannot be made to target immoral dispositions precisely; (3) is redundant, since cognitive enhancement by itself suffices.

42

Europe PMC

Br J Philos Sci  2013 3; 64(1): 1-31

PMID: 23526835 | PMCID: PMC3605696

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Recent theoretical work has identified a tightly constrained sense in which genes carry representational content. Representational properties of the genome are founded in the transmission of DNA over phylogenetic time and its role in natural selection. However, genetic representation is not just relevant to questions of selection and evolution. This article goes beyond existing treatments and argues for the heterodox view that information generated by a process of selection over phylogenetic time can be read in ontogenetic time, in the course of individual development. Recent results in evolutionary biology, drawn both from modelling work, and from experimental and observational data, support a role for genetic representation in explaining individual ontogeny: both genetic representations and environmental information are read by the mechanisms of development, in an individual, so as to lead to adaptive phenotypes. Furthermore, in some cases there appears to have been selection between individuals that rely to different degrees on the two sources of information. Thus, the theory of representation in inheritance systems like the genome is much more than just a coherent reconstruction of information talk in biology. Genetic representation is a property with considerable explanatory utility.

43

Europe PMC

Biol Psychol  2013 2; 92(2): 323-328

PMID: 23085134 | PMCID: PMC3573226

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Noradrenergic pathways are involved in mediating the central and peripheral effects of physiological arousal. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of noradrenergic transmission in moral decision-making. We studied the effects in healthy volunteers of propranolol (a noradrenergic beta-adrenoceptor antagonist) on moral judgement in a set of moral dilemmas pitting utilitarian outcomes (e.g., saving five lives) against highly aversive harmful actions (e.g., killing an innocent person) in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel group design. Propranolol (40 mg orally) significantly reduced heart rate, but had no effect on self-reported mood. Importantly, propranolol made participants more likely to judge harmful actions as morally unacceptable, but only in dilemmas where harms were 'up close and personal'. In addition, longer response times for such personal dilemmas were only found for the placebo group. Finally, judgments in personal dilemmas by the propranolol group were more decisive. These findings indicate that noradrenergic pathways play a role in responses to moral dilemmas, in line with recent work implicating emotion in moral decision-making. However, contrary to current theorising, these findings also suggest that aversion to harming is not driven by emotional arousal. Our findings are also of significant practical interest given that propranolol is a widely used drug in different settings, and is currently being considered as a potential treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder in military and rescue service personnel.

44

Europe PMC

J Ethics  2013; 17: 331-354

PMID: 24683311 | PMCID: PMC3967878

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In an intriguing essay, G. A. Cohen has defended a conservative bias in favour of existing value. In this paper, we consider whether Cohen's conservatism raises a new challenge to the use of human enhancement technologies. We develop some of Cohen's suggestive remarks into a new line of argument against human enhancement that, we believe, is in several ways superior to existing objections. However, we shall argue that on closer inspection, Cohen's conservatism fails to offer grounds for a strong sweeping objection to enhancement, and may even offer positive support for forms of enhancement that preserve valuable features of human beings. Nevertheless, we concede that Cohen's arguments may suggest some plausible and important constraints on the modality of legitimate and desirable enhancements.

45

Europe PMC

Neuropharmacology  2013 1; 64: 490-495

PMID: 22820554 | PMCID: PMC3485563

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Modafinil, a putative cognitive enhancing drug, has previously been shown to improve performance of healthy volunteers as well as patients with attention deficit disorder and schizophrenia, mainly in tests of executive functions. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of modafinil on non-verbal cognitive functions in healthy volunteers, with a particular focus on variations of cognitive load, measures of motivational factors and the effects on creative problem-solving. METHODS: A double-blind placebo-controlled parallel design study evaluated the effect of 200 mg of modafinil (N = 32) or placebo (N = 32) in non-sleep deprived healthy volunteers. Non-verbal tests of divergent and convergent thinking were used to measure creativity. A new measure of task motivation was used, together with more levels of difficulty on neuropsychological tests from the CANTAB battery. RESULTS: Improvements under modafinil were seen on spatial working memory, planning and decision making at the most difficult levels, as well as visual pattern recognition memory following delay. Subjective ratings of enjoyment of task performance were significantly greater under modafinil compared with placebo, but mood ratings overall were not affected. The effects of modafinil on creativity were inconsistent and did not reach statistical significance. CONCLUSIONS: Modafinil reliably enhanced task enjoyment and performance on several cognitive tests of planning and working memory, but did not improve paired associates learning. The findings confirm that modafinil can enhance aspects of highly demanding cognitive performance in non-sleep deprived individuals. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Cognitive Enhancers'.

46

Europe PMC

Am J Bioeth  2013; 13(11): 3-17

PMID: 24161170 | PMCID: PMC3898540

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

"Love hurts"-as the saying goes-and a certain amount of pain and difficulty in intimate relationships is unavoidable. Sometimes it may even be beneficial, since adversity can lead to personal growth, self-discovery, and a range of other components of a life well-lived. But other times, love can be downright dangerous. It may bind a spouse to her domestic abuser, draw an unscrupulous adult toward sexual involvement with a child, put someone under the insidious spell of a cult leader, and even inspire jealousy-fueled homicide. How might these perilous devotions be diminished? The ancients thought that treatments such as phlebotomy, exercise, or bloodletting could "cure" an individual of love. But modern neuroscience and emerging developments in psychopharmacology open up a range of possible interventions that might actually work. These developments raise profound moral questions about the potential uses-and misuses-of such anti-love biotechnology. In this article, we describe a number of prospective love-diminishing interventions, and offer a preliminary ethical framework for dealing with them responsibly should they arise.

47

Europe PMC

Philos Stud  2013 1; 162(2): 421-445

PMID: 23316090 | PMCID: PMC3540347

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Ethical theory often starts with our intuitions about particular cases and tries to uncover the principles that are implicit in them; work on the 'trolley problem' is a paradigmatic example of this approach. But ethicists are no longer the only ones chasing trolleys. In recent years, psychologists and neuroscientists have also turned to study our moral intuitions and what underlies them. The relation between these two inquiries, which investigate similar examples and intuitions, and sometimes produce parallel results, is puzzling. Does it matter to ethics whether its armchair conclusions match the psychologists' findings? I argue that reflection on this question exposes psychological presuppositions implicit in armchair ethical theorising. When these presuppositions are made explicit, it becomes clear that empirical evidence can (and should) play a positive role in ethical theorising. Unlike recent assaults on the armchair, the argument I develop is not driven by a naturalist agenda, or meant to cast doubt on the reliability of our moral intuitions; on the contrary, it is even compatible with non-naturalism, and takes the reliability of intuition as its premise. The argument is rather that if our moral intuitions are reliable, then psychological evidence should play a surprisingly significant role in the justification of moral principles.

48

Europe PMC

Philos Technol  2012 12; 25(4): 589-604

PMID: 23396750 | PMCID: PMC3566833

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Human beings are subject to a range of cognitive and affective limitations which interfere with our ability to pursue our individual and social goals. I argue that shaping our environment to avoid triggering these limitations or to constrain the harms they cause is likely to be more effective than genetic or pharmaceutical modifications of our capacities because our limitations are often the flip side of beneficial dispositions and because available enhancements seem to impose significant costs. I argue that carefully selected environmental interventions respect agents' autonomy and are consistent with democratic decision making.

49

Europe PMC

Philos Technol  2012 12; 25(4): 561-587

PMID: 23226627 | PMCID: PMC3510696

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

We argue that the fragility of contemporary marriages-and the corresponding high rates of divorce-can be explained (in large part) by a three-part mismatch: between our relationship values, our evolved psychobiological natures, and our modern social, physical, and technological environment. "Love drugs" could help address this mismatch by boosting our psychobiologies while keeping our values and our environment intact. While individual couples should be free to use pharmacological interventions to sustain and improve their romantic connection, we suggest that they may have an obligation to do so as well, in certain cases. Specifically, we argue that couples with offspring may have a special responsibility to enhance their relationships for the sake of their children. We outline an evolutionarily informed research program for identifying promising biomedical enhancements of love and commitment.

50

Europe PMC

Mind Lang  2012 11; 27(5): 519-545

PMID: 23335831 | PMCID: PMC3546390

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

According to Joshua Greene's influential dual process model of moral judgment, different modes of processing are associated with distinct moral outputs: automatic processing with deontological judgment, and controlled processing with utilitarian judgment. This article aims to clarify and assess Greene's model. I argue that the proposed tie between process and content is based on a misinterpretation of the evidence, and that the supposed evidence for controlled processing in utilitarian judgment is actually likely to reflect, not 'utilitarian reasoning', but a form of moral deliberation which, ironically, is actually in serious tension with a utilitarian outlook. This alternative account is further supported by the results of a neuroimaging study showing that intuitive and counterintuitive judgments have similar neural correlates whether or not their content is utilitarian or deontological.

51

Europe PMC

J Psychopharmacol  2012 11; 26(11): 1434-1442

PMID: 22495688 | PMCID: PMC3506165

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Intramural NIH HHS

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Previous studies have suggested that polymorphism in the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) influences responses to serotonergic manipulation, with opposite effects in patients recovered from depression (rMDD) and controls. Here we sought to clarify the neurocognitive mechanisms underpinning these surprising results. Twenty controls and 23 rMDD subjects completed the study; functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and genotype data were available for 17 rMDD subjects and 16 controls. Following tryptophan or sham depletion, subjects performed an emotional-processing task during fMRI. Although no genotype effects on mood were identified, significant genotype*diagnosis*depletion interactions were observed in the hippocampus and subgenual cingulate in response to emotionally valenced words. In both regions, tryptophan depletion increased responses to negative words, relative to positive words, in high-expression controls, previously identified as being at low-risk for mood change following this procedure. By contrast, in higher-risk low-expression controls and high-expression rMDD subjects, tryptophan depletion had the opposite effect. Increased neural responses to negative words following tryptophan depletion may reflect an adaptive mechanism promoting resilience to mood change following perturbation of the serotonin system, which is reversed in sub-groups vulnerable to developing depressive symptoms. However, this interpretation is complicated by our failure to replicate previous findings of increased negative mood following tryptophan depletion.

52

Europe PMC

J Appl Philos  2012 11; 29(4): 318-332

PMID: 23576833 | PMCID: PMC3617520

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Many believe that severe intellectual impairment, blindness or dying young amount to serious harm and disadvantage. It is also increasingly denied that it matters, from a moral point of view, whether something is biologically normal to humans. We show that these two claims are in serious tension. It is hard explain how, if we do not ascribe some deep moral significance to human nature or biological normality, we could distinguish severe intellectual impairment or blindness from the vast list of seemingly innocent ways in which we fail to have as much wellbeing as we could, such not having super-intelligence, or not living to 130. We consider a range of attempts to draw this intuitive normative distinction without appealing to normality. These, we argue, all fail. But this doesn't mean that we cannot draw this distinction or that we must, implausibly, conclude that biological normality does possess an inherent moral importance. We argue that, despite appearances, it is not biological normality but rather statistical normality that, although lacking any intrinsic moral significance, nevertheless makes an important moral difference in ways that explain and largely justify the intuitive distinction.

53

Europe PMC

Monash Bioeth Rev  2012 9; 30(2): 29-48

PMID: 23409535 | PMCID: PMC3590899

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

54

Europe PMC

Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci  2012 8; 367(1599): 2234-2244

PMID: 22734066 | PMCID: PMC3385690

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The New Thinking contained in this volume rejects an Evolutionary Psychology that is committed to innate domain-specific psychological mechanisms: gene-based adaptations that are unlearnt, developmentally fixed and culturally universal. But the New Thinking does not simply deny the importance of innate psychological traits. The problem runs deeper: the concept of innateness is not suited to distinguishing between the New Thinking and Evolutionary Psychology. That points to a more serious problem with the concept of innateness as it is applied to human psychological phenotypes. This paper argues that the features of recent human evolution highlighted by the New Thinking imply that the concept of inherited representation, set out here, is a better tool for theorizing about human cognitive evolution.

55

Europe PMC

Psychopharmacology (Berl)  2012 8; 222(3): 419-424

PMID: 22371301 | PMCID: PMC3395337

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Implicit negative attitudes towards other races are important in certain kinds of prejudicial social behaviour. Emotional mechanisms are thought to be involved in mediating implicit "outgroup" bias but there is little evidence concerning the underlying neurobiology. The aim of the present study was to examine the role of noradrenergic mechanisms in the generation of implicit racial attitudes. METHODS: Healthy volunteers (n = 36) of white ethnic origin, received a single oral dose of the β-adrenoceptor antagonist, propranolol (40 mg), in a randomised, double-blind, parallel group, placebo-controlled, design. Participants completed an explicit measure of prejudice and the racial implicit association test (IAT), 1-2 h after propranolol administration. RESULTS: Relative to placebo, propranolol significantly lowered heart rate and abolished implicit racial bias, without affecting the measure of explicit racial prejudice. Propranolol did not affect subjective mood. CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that β-adrenoceptors play a role in the expression of implicit racial attitudes suggesting that noradrenaline-related emotional mechanisms may mediate negative racial bias. Our findings may also have practical importance given that propranolol is a widely used drug. However, further studies will be needed to examine whether a similar effect can be demonstrated in the course of clinical treatment.

56

Europe PMC

EMBO Rep  2012 7; 13(7): 584-590

PMID: 22699939 | PMCID: PMC3389334

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

57

Europe PMC

Monist  2012 7; 95(3): 399-421

PMID: 22942461 | PMCID: PMC3431130

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

58

Europe PMC

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med  2012 7; 166(7): 629-633

PMID: 22751876 | PMCID: PMC3430849

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Sucrose is widely used for the management of procedural pain in newborn infants, including capillary blood sampling, venepuncture, and vascular cannulation. Multiple randomized controlled trials have demonstrated that sweet-tasting solutions reduce behavioral responses to acute painful stimuli. It has been claimed that sucrose should be a standard of care in neonatal units and that further placebo-controlled trials of sucrose are unnecessary and unethical. However, recently published data cast doubt on the analgesic properties of sucrose. We review this new evidence and analyze the philosophical and ethical questions that it raises, including the "problem of other minds." Sugar may be better understood not as an analgesic, removing or relieving pain, but as a compensating pleasure. There is a need for further research on the mechanism of sucrose's effect on pain behavior and on the long-term effects of sucrose treatment. Such trials will require comparison with placebo or with other interventions. Given uncertainty about the benefit of sucrose, it may be wise to use alternative analgesics or nonpharmacological interventions where these are available and appropriate. Sucrose may not be the answer to procedural pain in newborns.

59

Europe PMC

Nous  2012 6; 48(2): 314-341

PMID: 25364041 | PMCID: PMC4215192

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

60

Europe PMC

Int J Neuropsychopharmacol  2012 5; 15(4): 559-571

PMID: 21396152 | PMCID: PMC3325502

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Pharmacological cognitive enhancers (PCEs) are used to improve cognitive functions, such as attention, learning, memory and planning in patients with impairments in cognition resulting from traumatic brain injury (TBI) or from neuropsychiatric disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), mild cognitive impairment, schizophrenia, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Moreover, PCEs have been shown to improve cognition in healthy volunteers with no psychiatric disorders. This article describes the rationale behind the need for their use in neuropsychiatric patients and illustrates how PCEs can ameliorate cognitive impairments, improve quality of life and wellbeing, and therefore reduce the economic burden associated with these disorders. We also describe evidence that PCEs are being used as cognitive enhancers by healthy people. Crucially, as the lifestyle use of these drugs becomes very popular in the healthy population, a final aim is to present an overview of the current and future neuroethical considerations of enhancing the healthy brain. As information regarding their actual use, benefits and harms in various healthy populations is currently lacking, we propose research that aims to obtain relevant empirical data, monitor the short- and long-term effectiveness and side-effects, and initiate accurate surveys to determine current patterns and quantity of usage of PCE drugs by healthy people. Furthermore, in order to instigate a dialogue between neuroethics and neuropsychopharmacology, we urge scientists to explore and communicate the social and ethical implications of their research to the public. Finally, we discuss and highlight other means of enhancing cognition in both patients and healthy adults, including education and physical exercise.

61

Europe PMC

Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci  2012 4; 7(4): 393-402

PMID: 21421730 | PMCID: PMC3324565

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Neuroimaging studies on moral decision-making have thus far largely focused on differences between moral judgments with opposing utilitarian (well-being maximizing) and deontological (duty-based) content. However, these studies have investigated moral dilemmas involving extreme situations, and did not control for two distinct dimensions of moral judgment: whether or not it is intuitive (immediately compelling to most people) and whether it is utilitarian or deontological in content. By contrasting dilemmas where utilitarian judgments are counterintuitive with dilemmas in which they are intuitive, we were able to use functional magnetic resonance imaging to identify the neural correlates of intuitive and counterintuitive judgments across a range of moral situations. Irrespective of content (utilitarian/deontological), counterintuitive moral judgments were associated with greater difficulty and with activation in the rostral anterior cingulate cortex, suggesting that such judgments may involve emotional conflict; intuitive judgments were linked to activation in the visual and premotor cortex. In addition, we obtained evidence that neural differences in moral judgment in such dilemmas are largely due to whether they are intuitive and not, as previously assumed, to differences between utilitarian and deontological judgments. Our findings therefore do not support theories that have generally associated utilitarian and deontological judgments with distinct neural systems.

62

PubMed

Psychopharmacology (Berl)  2012 3; 220(2): 249-258

PMID: 21909634

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

RATIONALE: Cognitive impairments are important determinants of functional outcome in psychosis, which are inadequately treated by antipsychotic medication. Modafinil is a wake-promoting drug that has been shown to improve attention, memory and executive function in the healthy population and in patients with schizophrenia. OBJECTIVES: We aimed to establish modafinil's role in the adjunctive treatment of cognitive impairments in the first episode of psychosis, a time when symptoms may be more malleable than at chronic stages of the disease. METHODS: Forty patients with a first episode of psychosis participated in a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover design study assessing the effects of a single dose of 200 mg modafinil on measures of executive functioning, memory, learning, impulsivity and attention. RESULTS: Modafinil improved verbal working memory (d = 0.24, p = 0.04), spatial working memory errors (d = 0.30, p = 0.0004) and strategy use (d = 0.23, p = 0.03). It also reduced discrimination errors in a task testing impulsivity. Modafinil showed no effect on impulsivity measures, sustained attention, attentional set-shifting, learning or fluency. CONCLUSIONS: Modafinil selectively enhances working memory in first episode psychosis patients, which could have downstream effects on patients' social and occupational functioning.

63

Europe PMC

Philos Phenomenol Res  2012 3; 84(2): 307-344

PMID: 22654148 | PMCID: PMC3361722

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Block's well-known distinction between phenomenal consciousness and access consciousness has generated a large philosophical literature about putative conceptual connections between the two. The scientific literature about whether they come apart in any actual cases is rather smaller. Empirical evidence gathered to date has not settled the issue. Some put this down to a fundamental methodological obstacle to the empirical study of the relation between phenomenal consciousness and access consciousness. Block (2007) has drawn attention to the methodological puzzle and attempted to answer it. While the evidence Block points to is relevant and important, this paper puts forward a more systematic framework for addressing the puzzle. To give it a label, the approach is to study phenomenal consciousness as a natural kind. The approach allows consciousness studies to move beyond initial means of identifying instances of the kind like verbal report, and to find its underlying nature. It is well-recognised that facts about an underlying kind may allow identification of instances of the kind that do not match the initial means of identification (cp. non-liquid samples of water). This paper shows that the same method can be deployed to investigate phenomenal consciousness independently of access consciousness.

64

Europe PMC

Curr Biol  2012 2; 22(4): R108-11

PMID: 22361141 | PMCID: PMC4347660

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Transcranial direct current stimulation (TDCS) is a brain stimulation tool that is portable, painless, inexpensive, apparently safe, and with potential long-term efficacy. Recent results obtained from TDCS experiments offer exciting possibilities for the enhancement and treatment of normal or impaired abilities, respectively. We discuss new neuroethical problems that have emerged from the usage of TDCS, and also focus on one of the most likely future applications of TDCS: enhancing learning and cognition in children with typical and atypical development.

65

Europe PMC

Q J Exp Psychol (Hove)  2012; 65(2): 252-267

PMID: 20437297 | PMCID: PMC3335278

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust
MRC

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

We discuss a recent approach to investigating cognitive control, which has the potential to deal with some of the challenges inherent in this endeavour. In a model-based approach, the researcher defines a formal, computational model that performs the task at hand and whose performance matches that of a research participant. The internal variables in such a model might then be taken as proxies for latent variables computed in the brain. We discuss the potential advantages of such an approach for the study of the neural underpinnings of cognitive control and its pitfalls, and we make explicit the assumptions underlying the interpretation of data obtained using this approach.

66

Europe PMC

Bioethics  2012 1; 26(1): 32-48

PMID: 20459428 | PMCID: PMC3267048

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

There are not enough solid organs available to meet the needs of patients with organ failure. Thousands of patients every year die on the waiting lists for transplantation. Yet there is one currently available, underutilized, potential source of organs. Many patients die in intensive care following withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment whose organs could be used to save the lives of others. At present the majority of these organs go to waste. In this paper we consider and evaluate a range of ways to improve the number and quality of organs available from this group of patients. Changes to consent arrangements (for example conscription of organs after death) or changes to organ donation practice could dramatically increase the numbers of organs available, though they would conflict with currently accepted norms governing transplantation. We argue that one alternative, Organ Donation Euthanasia, would be a rational improvement over current practice regarding withdrawal of life support. It would give individuals the greatest chance of being able to help others with their organs after death. It would increase patient autonomy. It would reduce the chance of suffering during the dying process. We argue that patients should be given the choice of whether and how they would like to donate their organs in the event of withdrawal of life support in intensive care. Continuing current transplantation practice comes at the cost of death and prolonged organ failure. We should seriously consider all of the alternatives.

67

Europe PMC

J Appl Philos  2011 11; 28(4): 355-368

PMID: 22318775 | PMCID: PMC3272460

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Several authors have suggested that we cannot fully grapple with the ethics of human enhancement unless we address neglected questions about our place in the world, questions that verge on theology but can be pursued independently of religion. A prominent example is Michael Sandel, who argues that the deepest objection to enhancement is that it expresses a Promethean drive to mastery which deprives us of openness to the unbidden and leaves us with nothing to affirm outside our own wills. Sandel's argument against enhancement has been criticized, but his claims about mastery and the unbidden, and their relation to religion, have not yet received sufficient attention. I argue that Sandel misunderstands the notions of mastery and the unbidden and their significance. Once these notions are properly understood, they have surprising implications. It turns out that the value of openness to the unbidden is not just independent of theism, as Sandel claims, but is in fact not even fully compatible with it. But in any case that value cannot support Sandel's objection to enhancement.This is because it is not enhancement but certain forms of opposition to enhancement that are most likely to express a pernicious drive to mastery.

68

Europe PMC

AI Soc  2011 11; 26(4): 363-369

PMID: 22427723 | PMCID: PMC3303128

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Nicholas Agar has recently argued that it would be irrational for future human beings to choose to radically enhance themselves by uploading their minds onto computers. Utilizing Searle's argument that machines cannot think, he claims that uploading might entail death. He grants that Searle's argument is controversial, but he claims, so long as there is a non-zero probability that uploading entails death, uploading is irrational. I argue that Agar's argument, like Pascal's wager on which it is modelled, fails, because the principle that we (or future agents) ought to avoid actions that might entail death is not action guiding. Too many actions fall under its scope for the principle to be plausible. I also argue that the probability that uploading entails death is likely to be lower than Agar recognizes.

69

PubMed

J Med Ethics  2011 9; 37(9): 517

PMID: 21856779

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

70

Europe PMC

J Med Ethics  2011 7; 37(7): 441-444

PMID: 21343630 | PMCID: PMC3233525

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Elizabeth Fenton has criticised an earlier article by the authors in which the claim was made that, by providing humankind with means of causing its destruction, the advance of science and technology has put it in a perilous condition that might take the development of genetic or biomedical techniques of moral enhancement to get out of. The development of these techniques would, however, require further scientific advances, thus forcing humanity deeper into the danger zone created by modern science. Fenton argues that the benefits of scientific advances are undervalued. The authors believe that the argument rather relies upon attaching a special weight to even very slight risks of major catastrophes, and attempt to vindicate this weighting.

71

Europe PMC

J Evol Biol  2011 6; 24(6): 1178-1187

PMID: 21504495 | PMCID: PMC3116147

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

There is increasing evidence for epigenetically mediated transgenerational inheritance across taxa. However, the evolutionary implications of such alternative mechanisms of inheritance remain unclear. Herein, we show that epigenetic mechanisms can serve two fundamentally different functions in transgenerational inheritance: (i) selection-based effects, which carry adaptive information in virtue of selection over many generations of reliable transmission; and (ii) detection-based effects, which are a transgenerational form of adaptive phenotypic plasticity. The two functions interact differently with a third form of epigenetic information transmission, namely information about cell state transmitted for somatic cell heredity in multicellular organisms. Selection-based epigenetic information is more likely to conflict with somatic cell inheritance than is detection-based epigenetic information. Consequently, the evolutionary implications of epigenetic mechanisms are different for unicellular and multicellular organisms, which underscores the conceptual and empirical importance of distinguishing between these two different forms of transgenerational epigenetic effect.

72

Europe PMC

Curr Opin Anaesthesiol  2011 4; 24(2): 160-165

PMID: 21293267 | PMCID: PMC3252683

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Decisions to withdraw or withhold potentially life-sustaining treatment are common in intensive care and precede the majority of deaths. When families resist or oppose doctors' suggestions that it is time to stop treatment, it is often unclear what should be done. This review will summarize recent literature around futility judgements in intensive care emphasising ethical and practical questions. RECENT FINDINGS: There has been a shift in the language of futility. Patients' families often do not believe medical assessments that further treatment would be unsuccessful. Attempts to determine through data collection which patients have a low or zero chance of survival have been largely unsuccessful, and are hampered by varying definitions of futility. A due-process model for adjudicating futility disputes has been developed, and may provide a better solution to futility disputes than previous futility statutes. SUMMARY: Specific criteria for unilateral withdrawal of treatment have proved hard to define or defend. However, it is ethical for doctors to decline to provide treatment that is medically inappropriate or futile. Understanding the justification for a futility judgement may be relevant to deciding the most appropriate way to resolve futility disputes.

73

Europe PMC

Clin Ethics  2011 3; 6(1): 45-51

PMID: 22140353 | PMCID: PMC3227811

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In this paper, we offer a new account of disability. According to our account, some state of a person's biology or psychology is a disability if that state makes it more likely that a person's life will get worse, in terms of his or her own wellbeing, in a given set of social and environmental circumstances. Unlike the medical model of disability, our welfarist approach does not tie disability to deviation from normal species' functioning, nor does it understand disability in essentialist terms. Like the social model of disability, the welfarist approach sees disability as a harmful state that results from the interaction between a person's biology and psychology and his or her surrounding environment. However, unlike the social model, it denies that the harm associated with disability is entirely due to social prejudice or injustice. In this paper, we outline and clarify the welfarist approach, answer common objections and illustrate its usefulness in addressing a range of difficult ethical questions involving disability.

74

Europe PMC

Nous  2011 3; 45(1): 103-125

PMID: 21949447 | PMCID: PMC3175808

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Evolutionary debunking arguments (EDAs) are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of evaluative beliefs to undermine their justification. This paper aims to clarify the premises and presuppositions of EDAs-a form of argument that is increasingly put to use in normative ethics. I argue that such arguments face serious obstacles. It is often overlooked, for example, that they presuppose the truth of metaethical objectivism. More importantly, even if objectivism is assumed, the use of EDAs in normative ethics is incompatible with a parallel and more sweeping global evolutionary debunking argument that has been discussed in recent metaethics. After examining several ways of responding to this global debunking argument, I end by arguing that even if we could resist it, this would still not rehabilitate the current targeted use of EDAs in normative ethics given that, if EDAs work at all, they will in any case lead to a truly radical revision of our evaluative outlook.

75

Europe PMC

AJOB Neurosci  2011 3; 2(2): 3-9

PMID: 22318976 | PMCID: PMC3272467

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The aim of this article is to argue, by example, for neuroethics as a new way of doing ethics. Rather than simply giving us a new subject matter-the ethical issues arising from neuroscience-to attend to, neuroethics offers us the opportunity to refine the tools we use. Ethicists often need to appeal to the intuitions provoked by consideration of cases to evaluate the permissibility of types of actions; data from the sciences of the mind give us reason to believe that some of these intuitions are less reliable than others. I focus on the doctrine of double effect to illustrate my case, arguing that experimental results suggest that appeal to it might be question-begging. The doctrine of double effect is supposed to show that there is a moral difference between effects that are brought about intentionally and those that are merely foreseen; I argue that the data suggest that we regard some effects as merely foreseen only because we regard bringing them about as permissible. Appeal to the doctrine of double effect therefore cannot establish that there are such moral differences.

76

Europe PMC

AJOB Neurosci  2011 3; 2(2): W1-W4

PMID: 22319071 | PMCID: PMC3272471

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

77

Europe PMC

Am J Bioeth  2011 2; 11(2): 20-32

PMID: 21337273 | PMCID: PMC3082774

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

When is it permissible to allow a newborn infant to die on the basis of their future quality of life? The prevailing official view is that treatment may be withdrawn only if the burdens in an infant's future life outweigh the benefits. In this paper I outline and defend an alternative view. On the Threshold View, treatment may be withdrawn from infants if their future well-being is below a threshold that is close to, but above the zero-point of well-being. I present four arguments in favor of the Threshold View, and identify and respond to several counter-arguments. I conclude that it is justifiable in some circumstances for parents and doctors to decide to allow an infant to die even though the infant's life would be worth living. The Threshold View provides a justification for treatment decisions that is more consistent, more robust, and potentially more practical than the standard view.

78

PubMed

J Psychopharmacol  2011 2; 25(2): 197-204

PMID: 20212064

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
MRC

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Neuroethics is a developing field, concerned with addressing present and future applied ethical issues brought about directly and indirectly by neuroscience advancements. One domain where neuroscience has begun to have far-reaching ethical implications is in the research and development of pharmaceutical cognitive enhancers. Though such drugs are typically developed to treat cognitive disabilities and improve the quality of life for patients with neuropsychiatric disorders and brain injury, research has found that such drugs can improve performance on cognitive tasks in healthy individuals. In line with such findings is the growing use of these drugs by students and others for cognitive-enhancing purposes. The present paper reviews some of the evidence in both neuropsychiatric and healthy individuals and discusses the implications such research can have for society.

79

PubMed

Addiction  2011 1; 106(1): 25-31

PMID: 20955490

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

UNLABELLED: Philosophers have been writing about addiction continually since the 1990s, and a number of much older, broader philosophical theories are of direct relevance to the study of addiction. Yet the developments in the philosophical study of addiction have seldom been incorporated into the science of addiction. In this paper I focus upon two issues in the scientific literature: the disease classification of addiction and the claim that addictive behaviour is compulsive. While each of these views is open to debate on empirical grounds, there is a long history of philosophical work which must be engaged if these claims are to be justified in a philosophical sense. I begin by showing how the conceptual work of philosophers such as Boorse and Nordenfelt can be used to critique the claim that addiction is a disease. Following this, I demonstrate how deep philosophical concepts of freedom and willpower are embedded into scientists' claims about compulsion in drug addiction. These concepts are paradoxical and difficult, and they have consumed numerous contemporary philosophers of mind, such as Audi, Arpaly, Frankfurt, Mele, Wallace and Watson, among many others. I show how problems can arise when scientists sidestep the work of these philosophers, and I explain where scientists should seek to include, and sometimes exclude, philosophical concepts. CONCLUSIONS: Many philosophical concepts and theories can be of use to addiction science. The philosophical work must be understood and acknowledged if the science is to progress.

80

Europe PMC

Philos Sci  2011 1; 78(1): 60-82

PMID: 22075936 | PMCID: PMC3210733

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Developmental systems theory (DST) is often dismissed on the basis that the causal indispensability of nongenetic factors in evolution and development has long been appreciated. A reformulation makes a more substantive claim: that the special role played by genes is also played by some (but not all) nongenetic resources. That special role can be captured by Shea's 'inherited representation'. Formulating DST as the claim that there are nongenetic inherited representations turns it into a striking, empirically testable hypothesis. DST's characteristic rejection of a gene versus environment dichotomy is preserved but without dissolving into an interactionist casual soup, as some have alleged.

81

Europe PMC

Philos Phenomenol Res  2011 1; 82(1): 134-155

PMID: 22984298 | PMCID: PMC3440845

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

I develop an account of weakness of the will that is driven by experimental evidence from cognitive and social psychology. I will argue that this account demonstrates that there is no such thing as weakness of the will: no psychological kind corresponds to it. Instead, weakness of the will ought to be understood as depletion of System II resources. Neither the explanatory purposes of psychology nor our practical purposes as agents are well-served by retaining the concept. I therefore suggest that we ought to jettison it, in favour of the vocabulary and concepts of cognitive psychology.

82

PubMed

J Med Philos  2010 12; 35(6): 656-669

PMID: 21076074

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In its basic sense, the term "human" is a term of biological classification: an individual is human just in case it is a member of the species Homo sapiens. Its opposite is "nonhuman": nonhuman animals being animals that belong to other species than H. sapiens. In another sense of human, its opposite is "inhuman," that is cruel and heartless (cf. "humane" and "inhumane"); being human in this sense is having morally good qualities. This paper argues that biomedical research and therapy should make humans in the biological sense more human in the moral sense, even if they cease to be human in the biological sense. This serves valuable biomedical ends like the promotion of health and well-being, for if humans do not become more moral, civilization is threatened. It is unimportant that humans remain biologically human, since they do not have moral value in virtue of belonging to H. sapiens.

83

PubMed

J Psychopharmacol  2010 11; 24(11): 1649-1657

PMID: 19493958

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Previous research has demonstrated cognitive-enhancing effects of modafinil in humans and generated evidence for its therapeutic potential in psychiatric disorders. The neurochemical basis of these effects remains unresolved although a role for α1-adrenoceptors has been hypothesised. In this within-subject, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 12 healthy male adults received modafinil (300 mg), the α1-adrenoceptor antagonist prazosin (3 mg), both together and placebo on separate occasions at least 5 days apart. Cognitive effects were assessed using a well-validated testing battery focusing on executive and working memory functions. Blood pressure, heart rate and salivary α-amylase (sAA) were measured at hourly intervals. Cognitive effects of modafinil and prazosin were identified at the difficult levels of the One-Touch Stockings of Cambridge (OTSOC) planning task. Prazosin antagonized the error-reducing effect of modafinil when the agents were given together. In contrast, the combined agents acted synergistically to increase time taken to complete OTSOC problems compared with placebo. The tachycardic and sAA-elevating effects of prazosin were also potentiated by concurrent modafinil administration. The current data suggest that the cognitive effects of modafinil on performance accuracy and latency are dissociable in terms of their neurochemical mechanisms. Our findings support the hypothesised involvement of α1-adrenoceptors in some of the cognitive-enhancing effects of modafinil and warrant further investigation.

84

Europe PMC

Mind Lang  2010 11; 25(5): 561-582

PMID: 22427714 | PMCID: PMC3303120

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Neuroscience and psychology have recently turned their attention to the study of the subpersonal underpinnings of moral judgment. In this article we critically examine an influential strand of research originating in Greene's neuroimaging studies of 'utilitarian' and 'non-utilitarian' moral judgement. We argue that given that the explananda of this research are specific personal-level states-moral judgments with certain propositional contents-its methodology has to be sensitive to criteria for ascribing states with such contents to subjects. We argue that current research has often failed to meet this constraint by failing to correctly 'fix' key aspects of moral judgment, criticism we support by detailed examples from the scientific literature.

85

Europe PMC

J Med Ethics  2010 11; 36(11): 687-693

PMID: 20935316 | PMCID: PMC3045879

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Synthetic biologists aim to generate biological organisms according to rational design principles. Their work may have many beneficial applications, but it also raises potentially serious ethical concerns. In this article, we consider what attention the discipline demands from bioethicists. We argue that the most important issue for ethicists to examine is the risk that knowledge from synthetic biology will be misused, for example, in biological terrorism or warfare. To adequately address this concern, bioethics will need to broaden its scope, contemplating not just the means by which scientific knowledge is produced, but also what kinds of knowledge should be sought and disseminated.

86

Europe PMC

Br J Philos Sci  2010 9; 61(3): 459-484

PMID: 22654125 | PMCID: PMC3361721

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Consciousness in experimental subjects is typically inferred from reports and other forms of voluntary behaviour. A wealth of everyday experience confirms that healthy subjects do not ordinarily behave in these ways unless they are conscious. Investigation of consciousness in vegetative state patients has been based on the search for neural evidence that such broad functional capacities are preserved in some vegetative state patients. We call this the standard approach. To date, the results of the standard approach have suggested that some vegetative state patients might indeed be conscious, although they fall short of being demonstrative. The fact that some vegetative state patients show evidence of consciousness according to the standard approach is remarkable, for the standard approach to consciousness is rather conservative, and leaves open the pressing question of how to ascertain whether patients who fail such tests are conscious or not. We argue for a cluster-based 'natural kind' methodology that is adequate to that task, both as a replacement for the approach that currently informs research into the presence or absence of consciousness in vegetative state patients and as a methodology for the science of consciousness more generally.

87

PubMed

Am J Bioeth  2010 7; 10(7): 16-18

PMID: 20582820

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

88

Europe PMC

Am J Bioeth  2010 7; 10(7): 22-24

PMID: 20582823 | PMCID: PMC3062239

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

89

Europe PMC

Philos Psychiatr Psychol  2010 3; 17(1): 1-22

PMID: 24659901 | PMCID: PMC3959650

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Philosophers and psychologists have been attracted to two differing accounts of addictive motivation. In this paper, we investigate these two accounts and challenge their mutual claim that addictions compromise a person's self-control. First, we identify some incompatibilities between this claim of reduced self-control and the available evidence from various disciplines. A critical assessment of the evidence weakens the empirical argument for reduced autonomy. Second, we identify sources of unwarranted normative bias in the popular theories of addiction that introduce systematic errors in interpreting the evidence. By eliminating these errors, we are able to generate a minimal, but correct account, of addiction that presumes addicts to be autonomous in their addictive behavior, absent further evidence to the contrary. Finally, we explore some of the implications of this minimal, correct view.

90

PubMed

Monash Bioeth Rev  2010 3; 29(1): 04.1-18

PMID: 22031983

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

In this article, the author argues that there are psychological and biological constraints on our moral behaviour, rational decision-making and capacities to love. For example, low oxytocin levels can constrain our willingness to cooperate with others, and our capacity to maintain long-term loving relationships. There is also evidence that increasing iodine intake can improve a person's general intelligence, while drugs such as Modafinil can enhance cognitive performance. Savulescu argues that we have a moral obligation to remove those constraints, and that we ought to accept these methods of improving our moral behaviour, decision-making, and cognitive functioning.

91

PubMed

Trends Cogn Sci  2010 2; 14(2): 49-51

PMID: 19926518

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Wellcome Trust
MRC

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

92

Europe PMC

Biol Philos  2010 1; 25(1): 95-110

PMID: 20234826 | PMCID: PMC2837231

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Economic and Social Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

The question of whether non-human animals are conscious is of fundamental importance. There are already good reasons to think that many are, based on evolutionary continuity and other considerations. However, the hypothesis is notoriously resistant to direct empirical test. Numerous studies have shown behaviour in animals analogous to consciously-produced human behaviour. Fewer probe whether the same mechanisms are in use. One promising line of evidence about consciousness in other animals derives from experiments on metamemory. A study by Hampton (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 98(9):5359-5362, 2001) suggests that at least one rhesus macaque can use metamemory to predict whether it would itself succeed on a delayed matching-to-sample task. Since it is not plausible that mere meta-representation requires consciousness, Hampton's study invites an important question: what kind of metamemory is good evidence for consciousness? This paper argues that if it were found that an animal had a memory trace which allowed it to use information about a past perceptual stimulus to inform a range of different behaviours, that would indeed be good evidence that the animal was conscious. That functional characterisation can be tested by investigating whether successful performance on one metamemory task transfers to a range of new tasks. The paper goes on to argue that thinking about animal consciousness in this way helps in formulating a more precise functional characterisation of the mechanisms of conscious awareness.

93

PubMed

BMJ  2010; 340: c2542

PMID: 20483930

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

94

Europe PMC

J Med Ethics  2009 8; 35(8): 508-511

PMID: 19644010 | PMCID: PMC2711351

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

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Abstract

Recent studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging of patients in a vegetative state have raised the possibility that such patients retain some degree of consciousness. In this paper, the ethical implications of such findings are outlined, in particular in relation to decisions about withdrawing life-sustaining treatment. It is sometimes assumed that if there is evidence of consciousness, treatment should not be withdrawn. But, paradoxically, the discovery of consciousness in very severely brain-damaged patients may provide more reason to let them die. Although functional neuroimaging is likely to play an increasing role in the assessment of patients in a vegetative state, caution is needed in the interpretation of neuroimaging findings.

95

PubMed

Science  2009 7; 325(5937): 147

PMID: 19589983

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

96

PubMed

Bioethics  2009 6; 23(5): 274-290

PMID: 19076124

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

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Abstract

According to what we call the Principle of Procreative Beneficence (PB),couples who decide to have a child have a significant moral reason to select the child who, given his or her genetic endowment, can be expected to enjoy the most well-being. In the first part of this paper, we introduce PB,explain its content, grounds, and implications, and defend it against various objections. In the second part, we argue that PB is superior to competing principles of procreative selection such as that of procreative autonomy.In the third part of the paper, we consider the relation between PB and disability. We develop a revisionary account of disability, in which disability is a species of instrumental badness that is context- and person-relative.Although PB instructs us to aim to reduce disability in future children whenever possible, it does not privilege the normal. What matters is not whether future children meet certain biological or statistical norms, but what level of well-being they can be expected to have.

97

Europe PMC

Monash Bioeth Rev  2009 6; 28(2): 

PMID: 20069823 | PMCID: PMC3430737

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

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Abstract

The question whether and when it is morally appropriate to withdraw life-support from patients diagnosed as being in the persistent vegetative state is one of the most controversial in bioethics. Recent work on the neuroscience of consciousness seems to promise fundamentally to alter the debate, by demonstrating that some entirely unresponsive patients are in fact conscious. In this paper, I argue that though this work is extremely important scientifically, it ought to alter the debate over the moral status of the patients very little. First, the data presented is complex and difficult to interpret; we should be wary of taking the claimed discovery entirely at face value (though the remaining questions will probably be settled by future research). Second, though the demonstration that some of the patients are in fact conscious would show that they are moral patients, and therefore beings whose welfare must be taken into account, it would not, by itself at any rate, show that they have an interest in continued life.

98

Europe PMC

Philos Q  2009 4; 59(235): 237-251

PMID: 19649158 | PMCID: PMC2696473

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

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Abstract

Libertarianism seems vulnerable to a serious problem concerning present luck, because it requires indeterminism somewhere in the causal chain leading to directly free action. Compatibilism, in contrast, is thought to be free of this problem, as not requiring indeterminism in the causal chain. I argue that this view is false: compatibilism is subject to a problem of present luck. This is less of a problem for compatibilism than for libertarianism. However, its effects are just as devastating for one kind of compatibilism, the kind of compatibilism which is history-sensitive, and therefore must take the problem of constitutive luck seriously. The problem of present luck confronting compatibilism is sufficient to undermine the history-sensitive compatibilist's response to remote - constitutive - luck.

99

Europe PMC

J Med Philos  2009 2; 34(1): 6-26

PMID: 19193694 | PMCID: PMC3242047

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041
Arts and Humanities Research Council

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Neuroimaging studies of brain-damaged patients diagnosed as in the vegetative state suggest that the patients might be conscious. This might seem to raise no new ethical questions given that in related disputes both sides agree that evidence for consciousness gives strong reason to preserve life. We question this assumption. We clarify the widely held but obscure principle that consciousness is morally significant. It is hard to apply this principle to difficult cases given that philosophers of mind distinguish between a range of notions of consciousness and that is unclear which of these is assumed by the principle. We suggest that the morally relevant notion is that of phenomenal consciousness and then use our analysis to interpret cases of brain damage. We argue that enjoyment of consciousness might actually give stronger moral reasons not to preserve a patient's life and, indeed, that these might be stronger when patients retain significant cognitive function.

100

PubMed

Am J Bioeth  2009 1; 9(1): 50-51

PMID: 19132625

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

101

PubMed

Prog Brain Res  2009; 177: 361-370

PMID: 19818914

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Recent work in neuroimaging suggests that some patients diagnosed as being in the persistent vegetative state are actually conscious. In this paper, we critically examine this new evidence. We argue that though it remains open to alternative interpretations, it strongly suggests the presence of consciousness in some patients. However, we argue that its ethical significance is less than many people seem to think. There are several different kinds of consciousness, and though all kinds of consciousness have some ethical significance, different kinds underwrite different kinds of moral value. Demonstrating that patients have phenomenal consciousness--conscious states with some kind of qualitative feel to them--shows that they are moral patients, whose welfare must be taken into consideration. But only if they are subjects of a sophisticated kind of access consciousness--where access consciousness entails global availability of information to cognitive systems--are they persons, in the technical sense of the word employed by philosophers. In this sense, being a person is having the full moral status of ordinary human beings. We call for further research which might settle whether patients who manifest signs of consciousness possess the sophisticated kind of access consciousness required for personhood.

102

Europe PMC

Med Law Rev  2009; 17(2): 245-261

PMID: 19423645 | PMCID: PMC3223396

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

103

PubMed

Pain  2008 10; 139(2): 467-476

PMID: 18774224

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

Although religious belief is often claimed to help with physical ailments including pain, it is unclear what psychological and neural mechanisms underlie the influence of religious belief on pain. By analogy to other top-down processes of pain modulation we hypothesized that religious belief helps believers reinterpret the emotional significance of pain, leading to emotional detachment from it. Recent findings on emotion regulation support a role for the right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), a region also important for driving top-down pain inhibitory circuits. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in practicing Catholics and avowed atheists and agnostics during painful stimulation, here we show the existence of a context-dependent form of analgesia that was triggered by the presentation of an image with a religious content but not by the presentation of a non-religious image. As confirmed by behavioral data, contemplation of the religious image enabled the religious group to detach themselves from the experience of pain. Critically, this context-dependent modulation of pain specifically engaged the right VLPFC, whereas group-specific preferential liking of one of the pictures was associated with activation in the ventral midbrain. We suggest that religious belief might provide a framework that allows individuals to engage known pain-regulatory brain processes.

104

Europe PMC

Biol Psychiatry  2008 10; 64(7): 636-639

PMID: 18504036 | PMCID: PMC2577132

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) frequently display poor judgment and risk taking in their everyday behavior, but there are little empirical data on decision-making cognition in this disorder. The objectives of the study were to assess the effects of stimulant medication on decision making in ADHD and compare performance on the Cambridge Gamble Task between boys with and without ADHD. METHODS: Twenty-one boys (aged 7-13) diagnosed with ADHD underwent a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of methylphenidate (.5 mg/kg) during which they performed the Cambridge Gamble Task (CGT). A healthy age-matched control group was tested on two occasions off drug. RESULTS: The ADHD group bet more conservatively on the methylphenidate session than on the placebo session. In comparison with healthy control subjects, the ADHD group made more poor decisions, placed their bets more impulsively, and adjusted their bets less according to the chances of winning. Poor decision making was correlated with parent-reported symptoms and disruptive behavior in the ADHD group. CONCLUSIONS: Methylphenidate reduced risk-prone betting behavior on the CGT. Compared with control subjects, children with ADHD display a number of decision-making deficits on the task, and the measure of rational decision making may serve as an ecologically valid neuropsychological marker of impairment.

105

PubMed

Am J Bioeth  2008 9; 8(9): 31-33

PMID: 18853381

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

106

PubMed

Anesthesiology  1986 4; 64(4): 536-537

PMID: 3963474

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -

107

PubMed

Biophysik  1973 7; 9(4): 291-298

PMID: 4270184

Funded by:
Wellcome Trust - 086041

Citation counts: Web of Science® Times Cited - | Scopus Citation Count -