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Catching Criminals BEFORE they Strike Again

A researcher gave 96 male prisoners fMRI brain scans just before their release (he could have given them a spit test). Their brains were scanned during computer tasks during which they had to make quick decisions and control their impulses.

Four years later, Kent Kiehl found that most of the men who had lower activity in a region in the front of the brain that is involved in motor control and decision making were back in prison.

In the Huffington Post, Meredith Bennett-Smith quotes Kiehl's research paper as saying, "The odds that an offender with relatively low anterior cingulated activity would be rearrested were approximately double that of an offender with high activity in this region. These results suggest a potential neurocognitive biomarker for persistent antisocial behavior."

This suggests that criminals are BORN, not MADE. With recidivism at 40% in the US, this type of brain scan might be used on prisoners in the future, to help determine whether or not they are eligible for parole.

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