Interdisciplinary Network of Researchers in Touch
Thursday 25th July, 2019
|14:00-14:15: Symposium in Lecture Theatre, A01||Tactile expectation and peripersonal space in infancy|
As adults, we can accurately predict the timing and location of an impending touch specified by a looming visual object (Clery et al., 2015, Kandula et al., 2015). The developmental origins of this adaptively important ability, likely underpinned by multisensory neurons representing peripersonal space, have not yet been investigated. We presented 4- and 8-month-old infants with visual stimuli either looming towards their hands or receding towards the background, followed by a brief tactile stimulus delivered on their hands at the expected time-to-contact of the visual looming stimulus. We recorded infants’ spontaneous brain activity during the stimulus presentation using scalp electroencephalography (EEG) and we measured their somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) in response to the touches. Preliminary results suggest a larger response to the tactile stimuli that have been preceded by a visual looming stimulus vs a visual receding stimulus at 4 months, but not at 8 months.