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Biology and personality: a mathematical approach to the body-mind problem

Joan Carles Mico (Institute of Multidisciplinary Mathematics, Universitat Politecnica de Valencia, Valencia, Spain)
Salvador Amigó (Department of Personality, Assessment and Psychological Treatments, Universitat de València, Valencia, Spain)
Antonio Caselles (Department of Applied Mathematics, Universitat de València, Valencia, Spain)
Pantaleón D. Romero (Department of Mathematics, Physics and Technological Sciences, CEU-UCH, Valencia, Spain)


ISSN: 0368-492X

Article publication date: 29 July 2020

Issue publication date: 3 May 2021




The purpose of this paper is to investigate the body-mind problem from a mathematical invariance principle in relation to personality dynamics in the psychological and the biological levels of description.


The relationship between the two mentioned levels of description is provided by two mathematical models as follows: the response model and the bridge model. The response model (an integro-differential equation) is capable to reproduce the personality dynamics as a consequence of a determined stimulus. The invariance principle asserts that the response model can reproduce personality dynamics at the two levels of description. The bridge model (a second-order partial differential equation) can be deduced as a consequence of this principle: it provides the co-evolution of the general factor of personality (GFP) (mind), the it is an immediate early gene (c-fos) and D3 dopamine receptor gene (DRD3) gens and the glutamate neurotransmitter (body).


An application case is presented by setting up two experimental designs: a previous pilot AB pseudo-experimental design (AB) pseudo-experimental design with one subject and a subsequent ABC experimental design (ABC) experimental design with another subject. The stimulus used is the stimulant drug methylphenidate. The response and bridge models are validated with the outcomes of these experiments.


The mathematical approach here presented is based on a holistic personality model developed in the past few years: the unique trait personality theory, which claims for a single personality trait to understand the overall human personality: the GFP.



We thank very much Professor Pedro Carrasco and the “Servei Central de Suport a la Investigació Experimental” (SCSIE) of the University of Valencia, Spain, for the help with blood analyses.


Mico, J.C., Amigó, S., Caselles, A. and D. Romero, P. (2021), "Biology and personality: a mathematical approach to the body-mind problem", Kybernetes, Vol. 50 No. 5, pp. 1566-1587.



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