The Anatomy of Delusion

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Delusions are maintained false beliefs despite compelling evidence to the contrary. They can occur in both psychiatric and neurologic disorders. They are distinct from hallucinations and confabulations and involve different neural circuitries and anatomy. Different content-specific delusions likely have different underlying anatomy and neurobiology; however, it is postulated that all delusions share a common anatomical and physiological denominator. This underlines the basis of the two-factor hypothesis, which proposes that delusions arise from two distinct brain dysfunctions. For example, formation of the Capgras delusion may require a dysfunction of both facial processing neural networks as well as hypothesis-appraisal networks. There may be some genetic factors influencing the occurrence and content of delusions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGenomics, Circuits, and Pathways in Clinical Neuropsychiatry
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)9780128001059
StatePublished - 21 Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer disease
  • Capgras delusion
  • Delusion
  • Frontotemporal dementia
  • Paranoid delusion
  • Prefrontal cortex


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