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Expressions of emotions across species

Authors
  • Zych, Anna D1, 2
  • Gogolla, Nadine1
  • 1 Circuits for Emotion Research Group, Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Martinsried, Germany
  • 2 International Max-Planck Research School for Translational Psychiatry, Munich, Germany
Type
Published Article
Journal
Current Opinion in Neurobiology
Publisher
Current Biology
Publication Date
Jun 01, 2021
Volume
68
Pages
57–66
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.conb.2021.01.003
PMID: 33548631
PMCID: PMC8259711
Source
PubMed Central
Disciplines
  • Article
License
Unknown

Abstract

What are emotions and how should we study them? These questions give rise to ongoing controversy amongst scientists in the fields of neuroscience, psychology and philosophy, and have resulted in different views on emotions [ 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 ]. In this review, we define emotions as functional states that bear essential roles in promoting survival and thus have emerged through evolution. Emotions trigger behavioral, somatic, hormonal, and neurochemical reactions, referred to as expressions of emotion. We discuss recent studies on emotion expression across species and highlight emerging common principles. We argue that detailed and multidimensional analyses of emotion expressions are key to develop biology-based definitions of emotions and to reveal their neuronal underpinnings.

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