The orbital frontal cortex (OFC) has been implicated in a number of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, phobia, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Thus, a better understanding of its functions will likely provide critical information to understand the specific behavioral and cognitive processes affected in these human disorders. In recent years, a growing number of studies have provided evidence for anatomical and functional differentiation within the OFC. Here we discuss the effects of selective OFC (areas 11/13) lesions on social behavior, emotional regulation, and behavioral adaptation. Damage to these specific OFC subfields in adult monkeys resulted in profound changes in the flexible modulation of responses guided by reward value that could explain the poor fear regulation and disturbed social interactions observed in the same animals. A similar pattern of results was found when the OFC lesions were done in infancy. Thus, in monkeys, self-regulation abilities mediated by OFC areas 11/13 emerge from midinfancy through adolescence.
- Orbitofrontal cortex
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- History and Philosophy of Science