ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

心理学报 ›› 2020, Vol. 52 ›› Issue (11): 1253-1265.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2020.01253

• 研究报告 •    下一篇


童丹丹1,2, 李文福3, 禄鹏1, 杨文静2, 杨东2, 张庆林2(), 邱江2()   

  1. 1西北师范大学心理学院, 甘肃省行为与心理重点实验室, 兰州 730030
    2西南大学心理学部, 认知与人格教育部重点实验室, 重庆 北碚 400715
    3济宁医学院精神卫生学院, 山东 济宁 272067
  • 收稿日期:2019-12-20 出版日期:2020-11-25 发布日期:2020-09-22
  • 通讯作者: 张庆林,邱江;
  • 基金资助:
    * 国家自然科学基金项目(31470981);国家自然科学基金项目(31771231);教育部人文社会科学研究项目(19XJC190001);甘肃省社科规划项目(19YB026);山东省高等学校“青创科技计划”项目(2019RWF003)

The neural basis of scientific innovation problem finding

TONG DanDan1,2, LI WenFu3, LU Peng1, YANG WenJing2, YANG Dong2, ZHANG QingLin2(), QIU Jiang2()   

  1. 1School of Psychology, Northwest Normal University, Key Laboratory of Behavioral and Mental Health of Gansu Province, Lanzhou 730070, China
    2School of Psychology, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
    3Department of Mental Health, Jining Medical University, Jining 272067, China
  • Received:2019-12-20 Online:2020-11-25 Published:2020-09-22
  • Contact: ZHANG QingLin,QIU Jiang;


以高生态学效度的科学发明问题情境作为实验材料, 采用静息态功能磁共振成像技术, 基于低频振幅(ALFF)和静息态功能连接(RSFC)的分析方法, 探讨创造性科学问题提出的脑机制。结果发现, 在控制了被试性别、年龄后, 提出新颖有效性问题的比率越高, 左内侧前额叶(Left media prefrontal cortex, L-mPFC)和右小脑前叶(Right cerebellum)的ALFF值越高。进一步功能连接分析发现, 提出新颖有效性问题的比率与mPFC和楔叶(Cuneus)之间的功能连接强度呈显著正相关。结果强调mPFC对于科学发明情境中问题提出的重要作用, 且更高比率的新颖有效性问题的提出是通过mPFC与其它脑区的协同联结来实现的。

关键词: 创造性, 科学发明问题提出, 内侧前额叶, 低频振幅, 功能连接


Creative thinking, which refers to the process by which individuals produce a unique, valuable product based on existing knowledge, experience, and multi-perspective thinking activities, is the cornerstone of human civilization and social progress. As an important part of the creative field, scientific inventions in particular require individuals to break the existing state and build new things in the process of creating them. Therefore, the use of real-life examples of scientific inventions to explore the cognitive neural mechanism of creative thinking has become a focus of recent research. There have been many studies of creative problem solving, especially regarding its neural mechanisms. However, less attention has been paid to the issue of problem finding. Hence, the present study employed resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) and scientific invention problem-finding materials to identify the neural substrates of the process of scientific innovation problem finding.
In the present study, nine scientific innovation problem situations were selected as materials. Each problem consisted of three parts: (paradoxical) problem situation, (misleading) old problem, and heuristic prototype. The modified learning-testing paradigm was used to explore the brain mechanisms of problem finding. Participants were asked to find a new problem based on the given problem situation and old problem in the testing phase after learning all the heuristic prototypes in the learning phase. A total of 104 undergraduates (mean age = 19.26 ± 0.99) were enrolled in the final experiment. The rs-fMRI data were acquired using an echo planar imaging (EPI) sequence from a 3-T Siemens Magnetom Trio scanner (Siemens Medical, Erlangen, Germany) at the MRI center of Southwest University. We used both the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) and resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) to measure the local properties of rs-fMRI signals, and then investigated the relationship between ALFF/RSFC and individual differences in scientific problem finding.
After controlling for age and sex, the results of multiple regression analysis showed that individuals with a high rate of useful problems had higher spontaneous brain activity in the left medial prefrontal cortex (L-mPFC) and cerebellum. Functional connectivity analysis further found a significant positive correlation between the rate of useful problems and the mPFC-Cuneus functional connectivity.
Based on these results, we infer that: (1) The mPFC plays an important role in the process of scientific innovation problem finding. It might be responsive to two aspects: one involved in breaking the thinking set and forming novel association and another associated with the extraction and processing of working memory. (2) The cerebellum and the cuneus might be separately involved in the inter-semantic allocation of attentional resources and divulging.

Key words: creativity, scientific innovation problem finding, mPFC, AlFF, RSFC