Parkinsonian emotion recognition impairment better accounted for by sleep deprivation

The New York Times recently covered a paper by Grey and Tickle-Degnen, published in the journal Neuropsychology, finding that people with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) are not able to recognize facial and vocal emotions very well. The article states that it’s not clear why this seems to be the case.

I briefly reviewed the original meta-analytic paper (the pdf can be found here) and saw that the research team accounted for 1) the emotion recognition tasks used, 2) the medication the participants were on, and 3) the existence of depression as possible moderatoring variables for the impairment in emotion recognition.

They suggest that “the likely cause of this deficit is pathology in neural circuits involved in emotion recognition, particularly within basal ganglia structures including the ventral striatum and STN.” This tentative speculation is just fine and dandy, but it doesn’t really provide an explanation for why people with PD have this particular deficit in the first place [Read the entire article at The Quantum Lobe Chronicles]

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