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

Pleasant and Unpleasant Odors Influence Hedonic Evaluations of Human Faces: An Event-Related Potential Study

Cook, S; Fallon, N; Wright, H; Thomas, A; Giesbrecht, T; Field, M; Stancak, A; (2015) Pleasant and Unpleasant Odors Influence Hedonic Evaluations of Human Faces: An Event-Related Potential Study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience , 9 , Article 661. 10.3389/fnhum.2015.00661. Green open access

[thumbnail of frontiers_paper.pdf]
Preview
Text
frontiers_paper.pdf - Published version

Download (791kB) | Preview

Abstract

Odors can alter hedonic evaluations of human faces, but the neural mechanisms of such effects are poorly understood. The present study aimed to analyze the neural underpinning of odor-induced changes in evaluations of human faces in an odor-priming paradigm, using event-related potentials (ERPs). Healthy, young participants (N = 20) rated neutral faces presented after a 3 s pulse of a pleasant odor (jasmine), unpleasant odor (methylmercaptan), or no-odor control (clean air). Neutral faces presented in the pleasant odor condition were rated more pleasant than the same faces presented in the no-odor control condition, which in turn were rated more pleasant than faces in the unpleasant odor condition. Analysis of face-related potentials revealed four clusters of electrodes significantly affected by odor condition at specific time points during longlatency epochs (600−950 ms). In the 620−640 ms interval, two scalp-time clusters showed greater negative potential in the right parietal electrodes in response to faces in the pleasant odor condition, compared to those in the no-odor and unpleasant odor conditions. At 926 ms, face-related potentials showed greater positivity in response to faces in the pleasant and unpleasant odor conditions at the left and right lateral frontal-temporal electrodes, respectively. Our data shows that odor-induced shifts in evaluations of faces were associated with amplitude changes in the late (>600) and ultra-late (>900 ms) latency epochs. The observed amplitude changes during the ultralate epoch are consistent with a left/right hemisphere bias towards pleasant/unpleasant odor effects. Odors alter evaluations of human faces, even when there is a temporal lag between presentation of odors and faces. Our results provide an initial understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying effects of odors on hedonic evaluations.

Type: Article
Title: Pleasant and Unpleasant Odors Influence Hedonic Evaluations of Human Faces: An Event-Related Potential Study
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2015.00661
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2015.00661
Language: English
Additional information: © 2015 Cook, Fallon, Wright, Thomas, Giesbrecht, Field and Stancak. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution and reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Keywords: Odors, faces, perception, evaluation, event-related-potential
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
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1537248
Downloads since deposit
69Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item