Neurobiology of Disease 7, 540 542 (2000) doi:10.1006/nbdi.2000.0350, available online at http://www.idealibrary.com on Adapted from a Presentation by Robert M. Sapolsky Department of Biological Science, Stanford University, Gilbert Building 428, Stanford, California 94305-5020 Picture this: You are a zebra. A lion has lucked out, ripped your stomach open, and your innards are dragging in the dust. This is not a good time to go into shock, because you still need to get out of there. Now picture this: You are that lion who is half-starved to death, and if you do not chase after that zebra you are not going to survive. Now, these are two good reasons for mammals naturally to secrete stress hormones. What might be reasons to secrete stress hormones inappropriately in a mammal? The answers vary. Thinking about the ozone layer, thinking about the person who cut you off in traffic this morning, thinking about a disastrous day several years ago, ethnic cleansing, or the fact that there is less than a lifetime until your heart stops beating. These provide an insight for researchers to see where diseases come from in westernized societies, and the brain plays a critical role. For most beasts on
Neurobiology of Disease – Elsevier
Published: Oct 1, 2000
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