Behavioral effects of congenital ventromedial prefrontal cortex malformation

Aaron D. Boes, Amanda H. Grafft, Charuta Joshi, Nathaniel A. Chuang, Peg Nopoulos, Steven W. Anderson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Background: A detailed behavioral profile associated with focal congenital malformation of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) has not been reported previously. Here we describe a 14 year-old boy, B.W., with neurological and psychiatric sequelae stemming from focal cortical malformation of the left vmPFC.Case Presentation: B.W.'s behavior has been characterized through extensive review Patience of clinical and personal records along with behavioral and neuropsychological testing. A central feature of the behavioral profile is severe antisocial behavior. He is aggressive, manipulative, and callous; features consistent with psychopathy. Other problems include: egocentricity, impulsivity, hyperactivity, lack of empathy, lack of respect for authority, impaired moral judgment, an inability to plan ahead, and poor frustration tolerance.Conclusions: The vmPFC has a profound contribution to the development of human prosocial behavior. B.W. demonstrates how a congenital lesion to this cortical region severely disrupts this process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number151
JournalBMC Neurology
StatePublished - Dec 2 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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