Stork: The Development of Face Processing

CHARLES ALEXANDER NELSON (1995-05-01 to 2012-02-29) The Development of Face Processing. Amount: $7026605



The aim of the current competing renewal proposal is to extend previous work conducted under the auspices of NS32976. The conceptual framework of the proposal is that the neural circuitry involved in processing faces becomes specialized as a result of experience viewing faces. A series of studies is proposed that examines how the timing, dose, and duration of different types of experience influence the development and neural bases of face processing. Particular attention will be directed toward the infant's and child's ability to recognize faces from unfamiliar species ("other-species effect"), unfamiliar races ("other race effect"), unfamiliar gender (e.g., infants reared disproportionately by mothers or by fathers), and unfamiliar ages (i.e., the ability to recognize faces of infants, children or elderly adults, co-varied against experience viewing such faces). The premise underlying these studies is that the perceptual window through which faces are viewed is broadly tuned at birth, and narrows with experience. To examine the developmental function of this perceptual narrowing, a training study will also be performed to ascertain whether the perceptual window can be kept open (or the sensitive period prevented from closing) by enriched experience. The specific questions to be addressed are: a) What is the developmental course of perceptual narrowing? b) Can the perceptual window be kept open with training? And c) How broadly tuned is the perceptual window? Across all studies, the primary means by which brain function will be inferred will be the recording of event-related potentials;various behavioral probes, appropriate to each age group, will also be employed. With regard to ERPs, particular attention will be paid to face-specific components and the spatial distribution of these components, from which inferences will be drawn about underlying neural sources.

目前竞争续约提案的目的是扩展以前在NS32976主持下开展的工作。该提议的概念框架是处理面部所涉及的神经回路由于观察面部的经验而变得专门化。提出了一系列研究,探讨不同类型经验的时间,剂量和持续时间如何影响面部处理的发展和神经基础。将特别关注婴儿和儿童识别不熟悉物种面部的能力(“其他物种效应”),不熟悉的种族(“其他种族效应”),不熟悉的性别(例如,母亲或父亲不成比例地养育的婴儿)和不熟悉的年龄(即,识别婴儿,儿童或老年人的面部的能力,与观看这些面部的经历共同变化)。这些研究的基本前提是观察面部的感知窗口在出生时被广泛调整,并且随着经验而变窄。为了检验这种感知范围的发展功能,还将进行一项培训研究,以确定感知窗口是否可以通过丰富的经验保持开放(或敏感期间防止关闭)。需要解决的具体问题是:a)感知缩小的发展过程是什么? b)感知窗口可以通过培训保持开放吗? c)感知窗口有多广泛的调整?在所有研究中,推断脑功能的主要方法是记录事件相关电位;还将采用适合每个年龄组的各种行为探测。关于ERP,将特别关注面部特定组件和这些组件的空间分布,从中可以推断出潜在的神经源。

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