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The Ventral Tegmentum

Via plime: Scientific American finds true love in the ventral tegmentum.

“It’s always been assumed that passionate love inevitably declines over time,” study co-author Arthur Aron, a social psychologist, told Newsday. “But in survey after survey we always have these people who have been together a long time and say they are intensely in love. It was always chalked up to self-deception or trying to make a good impression.”

But Aron and his three colleagues found more than just lasting passion in the happy couples. Their scans also showed activity in their ventral pallidum, a brain region associated with feelings of long-term attachment in voles, and in the raphe nucleus, which makes the chemical serotonin that’s associated with calm and less obsession.