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Panksepp, J. (2007) Can PLAY diminish ADHD and facilitate the construction of the social brain? (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Abstract
The diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD) has been increasing at an alarming rate, paralleled by the prescription of highly effective psychostimulants whose developmental effects on growing brains remain inadequately characterized. One reason for the increasing incidence of ADHD may be the diminishing availability of opportunities for pre-school children to engage in natural self-generated social play. Pre-clinical work indicates that play can facilitate behavioral inhibition in growing animals, while psychostimulants reduce playfulness. The idea that intensive social play interventions, throughout early childhood, may alleviate ADHD symptoms remains to be evaluated. As an alternative to the use of play-reducing psychostimulants, society could establish play “sanctuaries” for at-risk children in order to facilitate frontal lobe maturation and the healthy development of pro-social minds.

Author/s:
Date:
January 2007
Volume:
16
Page/s:
57
Synonyms:
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Free play
  • Literature review
  • Mental health
  • Outdoor play
  • Physical play
  • Pro-social behaviour
  • Self-regulation
  • Social play
  • Social-emotional
  • Well-being outcomes
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Panksepp, J. et al. (1984) The psychobiology of play: Theoretical and methodological perspectives (Journal Article)

Abstract:

The social play of pairs of juvenile rats can be brought under tight experimental control using social deprivation, and it can be objectively quantified by measurement of pinning behavior. Research and conceptual issues concerning this paired-encounter procedure are summarized, including issues related to (1) measurement, (2) gender differences (and the absence thereof), (3) relations between play and aggression, (4) the regulatory processes interacting with and underlying play, (5) the neurochemical and neuroanatomical substrates of play, (6) the functions of play in dominance and other adult behaviors. Existing results suggest the operation of a harmoniously operating brain process which generates a unique emotive brain process that is appropriately referred to as social play. Although the concept of play remains to be adequately defined, the position is advocated that rigorous psychobiological analysis will ultimately provide an empirical definition based upon neural circuit characteristics. Analysis of the underlying circuits may help reveal the manner in which more complex levels of behavioral competence arise ontogenetically, and work in the area may yield clues to the genesis of several psychopathologies.

Date:
January 1984
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
8
Page/s:
465-492
Synonyms:
  • Affective behaviour
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Experimental
  • Physical play
  • Rough and tumble
  • Social play
  • Social-emotional
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Panksepp, J. et al. (2003) Modeling ADHD-type arousal with unilateral frontal cortex damage in rats and beneficial effects of play therapy (Journal Article)

Abstract:
Date:
January 2003
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
52
Page/s:
97-105
Synonyms:
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Experimental
  • Physical play
  • Rough and tumble
  • Social play
  • Executive function
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Panksepp, J. et al. (2003) “Laughing” rats and the evolutionary antecedents of human joy? (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Paul MacLean's concept of epistemics—the neuroscientific study of subjective experience—requires animal brain research that can be related to predictions concerning the internal experiences of humans. Especially robust relationships come from studies of the emotional/affective processes that arise from subcortical brain systems shared by all mammals. Recent affective neuroscience research has yielded the discovery of play- and tickle-induced ultrasonic vocalization patterns (∼50-kHz chirps) in rats may have more than a passing resemblance to primitive human laughter. In this paper, we summarize a dozen reasons for the working hypothesis that such rat vocalizations reflect a type of positive affect that may have evolutionary relations to the joyfulness of human childhood laughter commonly accompanying social play. The neurobiological nature of human laughter is discussed, and the relevance of such ludic processes for understanding clinical disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD), addictive urges and mood imbalances are discussed.

Date:
January 2003
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
79
Page/s:
533-547
Synonyms:
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Humour
  • Physical play
  • Rough and tumble
  • Social-emotional
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Panksepp, J. et al. (2014) Preclinical Modeling of Primal Emotional Affects (SEEKING, PANIC and PLAY): Gateways to the Development of New Treatments for Depression (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Mammalian brains contain at least 7 primal emotional sys- tems – SEEKING, RAGE, FEAR, LUST, CARE, PANIC and PLAY (capitalization reflects a proposed primary-process terminol- ogy, to minimize semantic confusions and mereological falla- cies). These systems help organisms feel affectively balanced (e.g. euthymic) and unbalanced (e.g. depressive, irritable, manic), providing novel insights for understanding human psychopathologies. Three systems are especially important for understanding depression: The separation distress (PAN- IC) system mediates the psychic pain of separation distress (i.e. excessive sadness and grief), which can be counteracted by minimizing PANIC arousals (as with low-dose opioids). De- pressive dysphoria also arises from reduced brain reward- seeking and related play urges (namely diminished enthusi- asm (SEEKING) and joyful exuberance (PLAY) which promote sustained amotivational states). We describe how an under- standing of these fundamental emotional circuits can pro- mote the development of novel antidepressive therapeutics – (i) low-dose buprenorphine to counteract depression and suicidal ideation emanating from too much psychic pain (PANIC overarousal), (ii) direct stimulation of the SEEKING sys- tem to counteract amotivational dysphoria, and (iii) the dis- covery and initial clinical testing of social-joy-promoting mol- ecules derived from the analysis of the PLAY system.

Date:
January 2014
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
47
Page/s:
383-393
Synonyms:
  • Experimental
  • Humour
  • Mental health
  • Physical play
  • Rough and tumble
  • Social play
  • Well-being outcomes
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline: