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Decision-making and the frontal lobes

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Volz,  Kirsten G.
Department Cognitive Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Schubotz,  Ricarda Ines
Department Cognitive Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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von Cramon,  D. Yves
Department Cognitive Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Volz, K. G., Schubotz, R. I., & von Cramon, D. Y. (2006). Decision-making and the frontal lobes. Current Opinion in Neurology, 19(4), 401-406. doi:10.1097/01.wco.0000236621.83872.71.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0010-A7E8-F
Abstract
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This article reviews the most significant advances concerning the neural correlates of decision-making with emphasis on those imaging studies investigating the neural implementation of evaluative judgment processes. This is done against the background of current concepts from the field of judgment and decision-making. RECENT FINDINGS: Actual neuroscientific findings suggest that subject to the extent of how deeply a decision-maker has to explore his/her value system in order to reach a decision, distinguishable orbital and medial prefrontal areas will be engaged. Decisions low in costs mapping the values onto the decision problem mainly rely on orbital and ventromedial prefrontal cortex, whereas decisions high in costs particularly draw on anterior-medial and dorsomedial prefrontal areas. This suggestion is related to the anatomic properties of the respective areas. SUMMARY: Combining neuroimaging data with concepts from research in judgment and decision-making may facilitate advances in our understanding of the contrast between normative theories and descriptive theories of decision-making. Incorporating findings from research on decision-making behavior in patients with specific prefrontal lesions may have much to offer for an understanding of both the areas' functions and cognitive theories on decision-making.