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Encoding of mechanical nociception differs in the adult and infant brain

Fabrizi, L; Verriotis, M; Williams, G; Lee, A; Meek, J; Olhede, S; Fitzgerald, M; (2016) Encoding of mechanical nociception differs in the adult and infant brain. Scientific Reports , 6 , Article 28642. 10.1038/srep28642. Green open access

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Abstract

Newborn human infants display robust pain behaviour and specific cortical activity following noxious skin stimulation, but it is not known whether brain processing of nociceptive information differs in infants and adults. Imaging studies have emphasised the overlap between infant and adult brain connectome architecture, but electrophysiological analysis of infant brain nociceptive networks can provide further understanding of the functional postnatal development of pain perception. Here we hypothesise that the human infant brain encodes noxious information with different neuronal patterns compared to adults. To test this we compared EEG responses to the same time-locked noxious skin lance in infants aged 0-19 days (n = 18, clinically required) and adults aged 23-48 years (n = 21). Time-frequency analysis revealed that while some features of adult nociceptive network activity are present in infants at longer latencies, including beta-gamma oscillations, infants display a distinct, long latency, noxious evoked 18-fold energy increase in the fast delta band (2-4 Hz) that is absent in adults. The differences in activity between infants and adults have a widespread topographic distribution across the brain. These data support our hypothesis and indicate important postnatal changes in the encoding of mechanical pain in the human brain.

Type: Article
Title: Encoding of mechanical nociception differs in the adult and infant brain
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/srep28642
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep28642
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Neuro, Physiology and Pharmacology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Inst for Women's Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Inst for Women's Health > Neonatology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Developmental Neurosciences Prog
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Statistical Science
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1503760
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