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Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2011 Mar;35(4):1075-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2010.11.012. Epub 2010 Dec 13.

Threat detection, precautionary responses, and anxiety disorders.

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  • 1University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.


Study of the anxiety disorders may be a particularly useful vehicle for demonstrating how foundational sciences (e.g. cognitive-affective neuroscience, evolutionary psychology) can advance psychiatric theory and research. Here we consider important potential advances and remaining future challenges when basic research on threat detection and precautionary responses is used to address the anxiety disorders. We emphasize the potential value of a model of threat detection and precautionary responses that integrates cognitive-affective neuroscience and evolutionary approaches for understanding the anxiety disorders. However, we also suggest that substantial additional work is needed in order to link systematically the psychobiological mechanisms posited by basic work on threat detection and precautionary responses to the complex phenomena seen in the clinic.

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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