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    Perceptual face processing in developmental prosopagnosia is not sensitive to the canonical location of face parts

    Towler, John and Parketny, Joanna and Eimer, Martin (2016) Perceptual face processing in developmental prosopagnosia is not sensitive to the canonical location of face parts. Cortex 74 , pp. 53-66. ISSN 0010-9452.

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    Individuals with developmental prosopagnosia (DP) are strongly impaired in recognizing faces, but it is controversial whether this deficit is linked to atypical visual-perceptual face processing mechanisms. Previous behavioural studies have suggested that face perception in DP might be less sensitive to the canonical spatial configuration of face parts in upright faces. To test this prediction, we recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs) to intact upright faces and to faces with spatially scrambled parts (eyes, nose, and mouth) in a group of ten participants with DP and a group of ten age-matched control participants with normal face recognition abilities. The face-sensitive N170 component and the vertex positive potential (VPP) were both enhanced and delayed for scrambled as compared to intact faces in the control group. In contrast, N170 and VPP amplitude enhancements to scrambled faces were absent in the DP group. For control participants, the N170 to scrambled faces was also sensitive to feature locations, with larger and delayed N170 components contralateral to the side where all features appeared in a non-canonical position. No such differences were present in the DP group. These findings suggest that spatial templates of the prototypical feature locations within an upright face are selectively impaired in DP.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): prosopagnosia, developmental, face processing, face perception, N170
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2015 09:26
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:19


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