Behavioral Neuroscience

Rebecca Shansky

Researchers’ preclinical trial upends conventional wisdom about responses to fear

For more than a century scientists have recognized “freezing” as the natural fear response. But in a new study, Northeastern assistant professor of psychology Rebecca Shansky found that female rats often respond to fear by “darting.” The find­ings not only raise ques­tions about the veracity of pre­vious studies that rely on freezing to indi­cate fear, but could also lead to better treat­ments for post-​​traumatic stress dis­order.

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