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Top-down modulation of the perception of other people in schizophrenia and autism

Cook, J; Barbalat, G; Blakemore, S-J; (2012) Top-down modulation of the perception of other people in schizophrenia and autism. FRONTIERS IN HUMAN NEUROSCIENCE , 6 , Article 175. 10.3389/fnhum.2012.00175. Green open access

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Abstract

Accurately and efficiently perceiving social cues such as body movements and facial expressions is important in social interaction. Accurate social perception of this kind does not solely rely on “bottom-up” visual processing but is also subject to modulation by “top-down” signals. For example, if instructed to look for signs of happiness rather than fear, participants are more likely to categorize facial expressions as happy—this prior expectation biases subsequent perception. Top-down modulation is also important in our reactions to others. For example, top-down control over imitation plays an important role in the development of smooth and harmonious social interactions. This paper highlights the importance of top-down modulation in our perception of, and reactions to, others. We discuss evidence that top-down modulation of social perception and imitation is atypical in Autism Spectrum Conditions and in schizophrenia, and we consider the effect this may have on the development of social interactions for individuals with these developmental disorders.

Type: Article
Title: Top-down modulation of the perception of other people in schizophrenia and autism
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2012.00175
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2012.00175
Language: English
Additional information: © 2012 Cook, Barbalat and Blakemore. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial License, which permits non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited.
Keywords: autism, schizophrenia, top-down, modulation, social perception, attention, expectation, priming
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 > 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 > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1376843
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