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Dr James Fallon's 'professional ADHD' - as he calls it - led him to discover a pattern in the brains of psychopaths, and begin studying them.
Then he discovered he is a psychopath.
Dr - Fallon - Neuroscientist - University - California
Dr Fallon is a neuroscientist at University of California, Irvine, where he studies how a number of conditions and diseases behave in the brain.
But in the 1980s, he happened to be studying the brains of killers - ones suspected to be psychopaths, using PET scans of their brains.
Scans - Family - Brains - Control - Group
He also happened to decide to use scans of his family's brains as the control group for what 'normal' brains look like, and included his own.
Among the pile of family scans was one that he was sure had been placed there incorrectly. Its activity patterns were all wrong for a normal person.
But they were identical to those of a psychopath.
Dr Fallon thought someone in his lab was playing a joke. They weren't. He peeled back the piece of black tape keeping the scan anonymous - and found his own name.
Percent - Population - People - Remorse
Only about one percent of the population are psychopaths, people who have little or no empathy or remorse.
They tend to be egotistical and lack inhibitions.
Words - Things - Kids - Sahara - Middle
In other words, they do things like drive their kids into the African Sahara in the middle of the night without a guide to go pick up the skull of a freshly-killed crocodile, with more lurking in the water. Or steal cars in spite of an obsession with a religion that tells them 'thou shalt not steal' - and have nothing to say at Catholic Confession.
These are all things Dr Fallon has done, but never thought were particularly strange.
Master - Degree - PhD - Number - Discoveries
He also holds both a Master's degree and PhD, has made a number of notable scientific discoveries, has been...
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