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Event-Related Alpha Suppression in Response to Facial Motion

Girges, C; Wright, MJ; Spencer, JV; O’Brien, JMD; (2014) Event-Related Alpha Suppression in Response to Facial Motion. PLOS ONE , 9 (2) , Article e89382. 10.1371/journal.pone.0089382. Green open access

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Abstract

While biological motion refers to both face and body movements, little is known about the visual perception of facial motion. We therefore examined alpha wave suppression as a reduction in power is thought to reflect visual activity, in addition to attentional reorienting and memory processes. Nineteen neurologically healthy adults were tested on their ability to discriminate between successive facial motion captures. These animations exhibited both rigid and non-rigid facial motion, as well as speech expressions. The structural and surface appearance of these facial animations did not differ, thus participants decisions were based solely on differences in facial movements. Upright, orientation-inverted and luminance-inverted facial stimuli were compared. At occipital and parieto-occipital regions, upright facial motion evoked a transient increase in alpha which was then followed by a significant reduction. This finding is discussed in terms of neural efficiency, gating mechanisms and neural synchronization. Moreover, there was no difference in the amount of alpha suppression evoked by each facial stimulus at occipital regions, suggesting early visual processing remains unaffected by manipulation paradigms. However, upright facial motion evoked greater suppression at parieto-occipital sites, and did so in the shortest latency. Increased activity within this region may reflect higher attentional reorienting to natural facial motion but also involvement of areas associated with the visual control of body effectors.

Type: Article
Title: Event-Related Alpha Suppression in Response to Facial Motion
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0089382
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0089382
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright: © 2014 Girges et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: Face, Vision, Event-related potentials, Electroencephalography, Sensory perception, Face recognition, Electrode recording, Perception
UCL classification: UCL
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 Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Clinical and Movement Neurosciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10087242
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