Guest Episode
February 5, 2024

Dr. Kay Tye: The Biology of Social Interactions and Emotions

Listen or watch on your favorite platforms

In this episode, my guest is Dr. Kay Tye, PhD, Professor of Systems Neurobiology at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Investigator. We discuss the neural circuit basis of social interactions and loneliness. We also discuss how animals and people establish themselves in a group hierarchy by rank and how the brain responds to dominance and subordination.

Much of our discussion relates to how social media impacts our sense of social connectedness or lack thereof. The topics covered in this episode are directly relevant to anyone interested in the neuroscience of mental health, work-life balance, abundance versus scarcity mindset, and interpersonal dynamics.

Journal Articles

Other Resources

People Mentioned

  • S.M.: patient with bilateral amygdala damage
  • Harry Harlow: Psychologist, known for his social isolation experiments in monkeys
  • Markus Meister: Professor of Biological Science at Caltech
  • Ben Barres: Neuroscientist at Stanford

About this Guest

Dr. Kay Tye

Kay Tye, Ph.D. is a professor of systems neurobiology at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Investigator.

  • 00:00:00 Dr. Kay Tye
  • 00:02:39 Sponsors: Eight Sleep, Levels & LMNT
  • 00:06:40 Amygdala; “Valence”
  • 00:12:43 Novelty; Reward & Punishment Response
  • 00:20:06 Amygdala & Hunger; Social Interaction
  • 00:26:21 Social Media & Social Connection; Tool: Email & Time Management
  • 00:35:03 Sponsor: AG1
  • 00:36:30 Social Media; Friction & Feedback, Leadership
  • 00:43:44 Social Isolation, Harlow Experiments, “Loneliness Neurons”
  • 00:51:47 Social Homeostasis, COVID-19 Pandemic & Loneliness
  • 01:01:29 Quality of Social Contact, Social Homeostasis, Social Media
  • 01:08:40 Sponsor: InsideTracker
  • 01:09:42 Social Media, Relationships; Social Isolation & Exclusion
  • 01:18:26 Empathy: Friend vs. Foe
  • 01:28:40 Background & Empathy, Diversity, Emotional Regulation
  • 01:34:34 Abundance vs. Scarcity Mindset
  • 01:37:22 Social Rank & Hierarchy, Sibling Order, Development
  • 01:45:54 Dynamic Hierarchy; Dominants vs. Subordinates; Mentors
  • 01:55:32 Psychedelics: Research & Mechanisms; Psilocybin
  • 02:06:28 Work-Life Balance, Fitness & Extracurriculars
  • 02:11:56 Personal Life, Diversity, Happiness; Typical Day
  • 02:15:42 Science & Academia; Future Directions
  • 02:23:48 Research & Science Outreach
  • 02:28:48 Zero-Cost Support, Spotify & Apple Reviews, YouTube Feedback, Sponsors, Momentous, Social Media, Neural Network Newsletter

Become a Huberman Lab Premium member to access full episode transcripts & more

Members also get to submit questions for AMA episodes, plus access to exclusive bonus content. A significant portion of proceeds are donated to fund human scientific research.

Become a Member

or sign in to view this Transcript

No items found.

Join 400,000+ subscribers to get regular emails on neuroscience, health, and science-related tools from Dr. Andrew Huberman.

Plus, you’ll also get Andrew’s exclusive Daily Blueprint, where Andrew shares his daily routine, and outlines practical protocols you can use to stay productive and maximize your health.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

By submitting your email to subscribe, you agree to Scicomm Media's Privacy Policy