Wednesday 21 May 2014
Paedophiles' brains are 'abnormally tuned' [not for a MAP, it is not abnormal] to children's faces, new study claims
"Paedophiles’ brains are “abnormally tuned” to find the face of a child more attractive than that of an adult, according to a study published today.
The results mean that it may be possible in future to “diagnose” [sic] potential paedophiles [sic] at a young age by studying their responses to the faces of adults and children, scientists said.
Researchers at the University of Kiel in Germany studied the brains of 56 adults, 23 of whom were male paedophiles and the remainder either heterosexual or homosexual men. While their brains were being monitored by a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner, they were briefly exposed to pictures of men’s, women’s, boys’ and girls’ faces.
In the individuals attracted to adults of either sex, the regions of the brain associated with facial processing and sexual desire lit up when the faces of adults were shown. But in the brains of the paedophiles, images of children’s faces prompted the same regions to respond.
The scientists said their findings, published in the journal Biology Letters, confirmed previous studies showing that human beings process faces according to the sexual orientation of the observer.
“The critical new finding is that face processing is also tuned to face cues revealing the developmental stage that is sexually preferred,” they wrote.
“We found no evidence to suggest that paedophiles recruit a different brain network when exposed to faces of the preferred sex and age than individuals showing a normal preference for adults do… the same network is activated by the sexually preferred face, but the main difference is that in paedophiles that network is abnormally tuned [sic] to sexual immaturity [sic].”
Dr Jorge Ponseti of the University of Kiel’s Medical School, the study’s lead author, told The Independent his team now hoped to carry out further research into whether paedophilia could be detected using only a subject’s responses to children’s faces.
He added that if this works, it should eventually be possible to assess whether someone might be a paedophile based on their brain’s responses to studying children’s faces.
“We could start to look at the onset of paedophilia, which is probably in puberty at about 12 or 14 years [old],” he said.[ah, like any sexual orientation, then?]
The NSPCC welcomed the research. Jon Brown, the charity’s lead on tackling sexual abuse, said: “There is never any excuse for sexually abusing a child, but any research that could help improve child protection practice is welcome. [you tool - a wooooshh again].
“For example, understanding why some people have a sexual interest in children could help to develop new treatment programmes [sic] that aim to control and change a paedophile’s behaviour [sic]. It’s also important to remember that not everyone who has a sexual interest in children will go on to act on their impulses.” [and don't you forget it].
Previous research also involving MRI scans has suggested that paedophilia may be the result of faulty connections in the brain. In 2007, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto reported that the brains of paedophiles contained much less “white matter” – responsible for wiring different parts of the brain together – than those of non-sexual criminals." [sic]
Paedophiles' brains are abnormally tuned to be attracted to children's faces shocking [what?] study finds
Is paedophilia an illness? [eh, we keep telling you] Brains are wired differently in offenders [offenders? it says paedophiles], study claims
>>>>>We see no reference, to offenders, in this sample.<<<<<
Pedophiles: Another view on faces
Discovered link between facial recognition and sexual age preference: Sexual Medicine
Paedophiles' brains are 'abnormally tuned' to children's faces, new study claims http://t.co/UXAyWBsnJp pic.twitter.com/LDxhcATDck
— The Independent (@Independent) May 21, 2014
Paedophilia is an illness, claim scientists http://t.co/BPU8eUfRdg
— Daily Mail Online (@MailOnline) May 21, 2014
@MailOnline No he does not, you tools - If It Wasn't For Those Sexy Kids ... http://t.co/H00wKzC8U6
— The OSC (@OSCP12h) May 21, 2014
Is paedophilia an illness? Brains are wired differently in offenders, study claims | ABLX Boston http://t.co/HAtxBHTnOH via @sharethis
— James Cantor (@JamesCantorPhD) May 21, 2014
@JonBrown46 I see you are popular with the sex offender today Jon! Makes a change is usually me http://t.co/SELFKCmvqm @PeterWanless(Embedded Tweets - click dates)
— Ian Mcfadyen (@IanMcFadyen1966) May 21, 2014
Published 21 May 2014
Human face processing is tuned to sexual age preferences
J. Ponseti, O. Granert, T. van Eimeren, O. Jansen, S. Wolff, K. Beier, G. Deuschl, H. Bosinski and H. Siebner
Human faces can motivate nurturing behaviour or sexual behaviour when adults see a child or an adult face, respectively. This suggests that face processing is tuned to detecting age cues of sexual maturity to stimulate the appropriate reproductive behaviour: either caretaking or mating [are they mutually-exclusive?].
In paedophilia, sexual attraction is directed to sexually immature children [sic - you mean reproductively]. Therefore, we hypothesized that brain networks that normally are tuned to mature faces of the preferred gender show an abnormal tuning to sexual immature faces in paedophilia.
Here, we use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to test directly for the existence of a network which is tuned to face cues of sexual maturity [sic - you mean reproductively]. During fMRI, participants sexually attracted to either adults or children were exposed to various face images.
In individuals attracted to adults, adult faces activated several brain regions significantly more than child faces. These brain regions comprised areas known to be implicated in face processing, and sexual processing, including occipital areas, the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex and, subcortically, the putamen and nucleus caudatus.
The same regions were activated in paedophiles, but with a reversed preferential response pattern."
Wednesday 21 May, 2014
EXPERT REACTION: Paedophiles brains prefer children's faces (Biology Letters*)
Professor James Ogloff is Director of the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science and Legal Studies at Swinburne University of Technology, Victoria
"The results need to be treated with caution.
The sample sizes are small, and very little information is provided regarding the clinical characteristics of the sample or about the task used (number of trials etc.).
From a technical perspective, the findings are relatively minimal. There is little practical value of the results. As the authors note, because of the cross-sectional design, it is not possible to determine how any differences develop.
Moreover, as with other studies that investigate paedophilic preferences [sic], the fact that a person is sexually attracted by a person regardless of age does not mean that they will act on that preference.
I think the authors make too much of the data in the discussion given the significant limitations of the study.
The previous imaging study they reference re. sexual preference and fMRI activation to faces is also based on small sample sizes (10 in each group) and uncorrected data analysis."
* Human face processing is tuned to sexual age preferences, Ponseti et al., Biology Letters, 2014, <a href="http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/10/5/20140200">http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2014.0200
Be careful what you look for, you may just find it.