UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Intraoral somatosensation: a NASCENT perspective

Bono, Davide; (2020) Intraoral somatosensation: a NASCENT perspective. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

[thumbnail of PhDThesis_DavideBono.pdf]
Preview
Text
PhDThesis_DavideBono.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (26MB) | Preview

Abstract

The mouth is one of the most densely innervated parts of the body. Several sensory receptors transmit touch in the mouth to the brain. Nevertheless, despite its sensory richness, somatosensation in the mouth remains poorly understood. In this thesis, through 5 separate studies, we propose a new, NASCENT approach to studying the properties of human teeth as powerful sensory organs. In a set of multiple behavioural experiments, we have investigated whether sensory afferents that innervate human dentition can sense spatial features of static and dynamic stimuli delivered on a given tooth, in addition to their established role in sensing force applied to teeth. Similarly to the skin, position sensing on teeth relies on a distorted mental representation of dentition. In a separate study, we investigated some further properties of such representation. Our result suggests the representation of mouth position is not fixed or innate, but is surprisingly plastic and dependent on short-term multisensory experience. As well as investigating different levels of processing of somatosensory stimuli received within the mouth milieu, this thesis also investigated and identified the cortical targets of such somatosensory signals. Using a novel pneumatic computer-controlled stimulation device we aimed at purely stimulation-driven mapping of the intraoral tissues, particularly the teeth and the tongue. These data confirm a coarse-grained topography in the primary somatosensory cortex which is idiosyncratic between individuals. Such coarse-grained topography was observed even when using a more ecological paradigm consisting of the haptic exploration of dentition with the tongue. Finally, we observed modest evidence in support of the multisensory response account of the primary somatosensory cortex after presentation of non-tactile, teeth-related stimuli. In conclusion, this thesis provides new insights into the sensory processing and neural representation of intraoral surfaces while also suggesting future possible practical applications in cognitive neuroscience and clinical neuropsychology.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Intraoral somatosensation: a NASCENT perspective
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2020. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
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 > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Experimental Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10099573
Downloads since deposit
68Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item