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Bergen, D. (2009) Play and Brain Development as Complementary Non Lonear Dynamic (Chaotic / Complex) Systems (Conference Paper)

Kerkhof, L. et al. (2013) Cellular activation in limbic brain systems during social play behaviour in rats (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Positive social interactions during the juvenile and adolescent phases of life are essential for proper social and cognitive development in mammals, including humans. During this developmental period, there is a marked increase in peer–peer interactions, signified by the abundance of social play behaviour. Despite its importance for behavioural development, our knowledge of the neural underpinnings of social play behaviour is limited. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to map the neural circuits involved in social play behaviour in rats. This was achieved by examining cellular activity after social play using the immediate early gene c-Fos as a marker. After a session of social play behaviour, pronounced increases in c-Fos expression were observed in the medial prefrontal cortex, medial and ventral orbitofrontal cortex, dorsal striatum, nucleus accumbens core and shell, lateral amygdala, several thalamic nuclei, dorsal raphe and the pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus. Importantly, the cellular activity patterns after social play were topographically organized in this network, as indicated by play-specific correlations in c-Fos activity between regions with known direct connections. These correlations suggest involvement in social play behaviour of the projections from the medial prefrontal cortex to the striatum, and of amygdala and monoaminergic inputs to frontal cortex and striatum. The analyses presented here outline a topographically organized neural network implicated in processes such as reward, motivation and cognitive control over behaviour, which mediates social play behaviour in rats.

Date:
January 2013
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
219
Page/s:
1181-1211
Synonyms:
  • Affective behaviour
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Experimental
  • Pro-social behaviour
  • Social play
  • Social-emotional
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Neuroscience, . (2018) The Educated Brain Policy Brief for Infancy and Early Childhood (Manuscript)

Abstract:

This brief relates to the first seminar in a series of three around the theme of ‘The Educated Brain’. Each research seminar includes talks from leading
researchers and roundtable discussions about the links between research, policy and practice. Presentations at the first seminar on infancy and early
childhood focused on where interdisciplinary research can make progress in our understanding, with a focus on the developing brain of young children
including: scanning young brains; examining the concept of ‘school readiness’; learning through play; and learning in a stressful environment. Research
shows innovative methodologies and data collection being applied in studies such as tracking children’s movements through play and research-informed
practitioner tools such as the ‘school readiness questionnaire’. We focused on some areas for policy and practice that may be informed by developing
research in education and neuroscience.

Date:
January 2018
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Neuroscience, . (2018) The Education Brain Policy Brief for Late Childhood and Adolescence (Manuscript)

Abstract:

This brief relates to the second seminar in a series of three around the theme of ‘The Educated Brain’. Each research seminar includes talks from leading
researchers and roundtable discussions about the links between research and policy and practice. Presentations at the second seminar built on
discussions from seminar 1 by focusing on school years from age 8. Academic presentations covered: inequalities in educational outcomes, researching
the adolescent brain, the role of rhythm in cognitive development, transition to secondary school and bilingualism. The keynote lecture delivered by
Professor Charles Nelson reported on a body of work investigating the impact of early neglect on children and institutional care.

Date:
January 2018
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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:

Pellis, S. et al. (2007) Rough-and-Tumble Play and the Development of the Social Brain (Journal Article)

Abstract:
Date:
January 2007
Volume:
16
Page/s:
95-98
Synonyms:
  • Affective behaviour
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Literature review
  • Physical play
  • Rough and tumble
  • Social play
  • Social-emotional
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline: