Urban Green Spaces (08-11-21)

Chang and colleagues continue research into the implications of experiencing natural environments.  They report that “viewing green urban landscapes that vary in terms of green-space density elicits corresponding changes in the activity of the human ventral posterior cingulate cortex that is correlated to behavioural stress-related responses. . . . these findings raise a therapeutic potential for natural environmental exposure.. . . Validating the role of the PCC in particular as it relates to stress-regulatory mechanisms and more broadly, mental health, is of particular clinical importance as this structure shows abnormalities in diseases (Alzheimer's) . . . neuropsychological disorders (schizophrenia, depression, autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) . . . and in ageing. . . . The PCC also shows abnormal function following traumatic brain injury. . . . Our findings that green urban landscapes can elicit systematic changes in responses in this region that are paralleled by changes in stress-ratings, then, raise an intriguing therapeutic potential for natural environmental exposure.”

Dorita Chang, Bin Jiang, Nocole Wong, Jing Wong, Chris Webster, and Tatia Lee.  2021.  “The Human Posterior Cingulate and the Stress-Response Benefits of Viewing Green Urban Landscapes.”  NeuroImage, vol. 226, 117555, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.117555