Re: evil boredom

Anders Sandberg (
Fri, 7 Feb 1997 12:02:53 +0100 (MET)

On Thu, 6 Feb 1997, Robert Schrader wrote:

> Anders Sandberg wrote:
> > ...novelty-seeking behavior linked to D2...
> D2? Please elaborate. Only makes sense to me in Scrabble.

It is a dopamine receptor. Last year someone discovered that people
exhibiting Cloninger-style novelty-seeking behavior had a much higher
prevalence for a certain allele of the D2 receptor in the medial forebrain
bundle (there was an article in Breakthrough! about it). This suggests a
direct link genetics -> neurons -> reward systems -> behavior which is
quite interesting.

> > ...Still, what do we know about the neurochemistry of boredom?
> In 1987, in a study of genetic predisposition to alcoholism,
> C. Robert Cloninger wrote that he had a good correlation
> between novelty-seeking and levels of norepinepherine,
> dopamine, and seratonin.
> Anybody know if a more generalized ( ie: non-alcoholic ) study
> has been done?

One of my fellow students at Karolinska was an ex-policemen and
psychologist who had studied the chemistry of the cerebrospinal fluid from
violent criminals and esp. serial killers. His results also suggested that
many of them were extreme novelty-seekers. Unfortunately I think it is
hard to get any good results for normal people, since the individual
variances and noise seems to be high.

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y