Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour
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Thesis defense Josi Driessen (Donders series 500)

6 July 2021

Promotors: prof. R. Kessels and prof. J. Buitelaar
Co-promotors: dr. I. Brasil and dr. J. Glennon

Psychopathic traits and mechanisms of antisocial decision-making

Psychopathy is defined as a personality disorder associated with social-emotional dysfunction and antisocial behavior. Individuals with the most severe levels of psychopathic traits are often seen in penitentiaries, but psychopathic traits can also be found and measured dimensionally in the general community. This dissertation describes a series of experiments investigating social-emotional processing and decision-making in individuals with varying levels of psychopathic traits. The results of these experiments provide new insights into potential cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying the social-emotional and decision-making disturbances associated with psychopathy. These insights contribute to our understanding of the abnormalities in brain and behavior in individuals with psychopathic and antisocial characteristics and how these in often lead to a reduced ability to adapt to society.​