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    Multisensory interactions between vestibular, visual and somatosensory signals

    Ferrè, Elisa Raffaella and Walther, L.E. and Haggard, P. (2015) Multisensory interactions between vestibular, visual and somatosensory signals. PLoS One 10 (4), e0124573. ISSN 1932-6203.

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    Vestibular inputs are constantly processed and integrated with signals from other sensory modalities, such as vision and touch. The multiply-connected nature of vestibular cortical anatomy led us to investigate whether vestibular signals could participate in a multi-way interaction with visual and somatosensory perception. We used signal detection methods to identify whether vestibular stimulation might interact with both visual and somatosensory events in a detection task. Participants were instructed to detect near-threshold somatosensory stimuli that were delivered to the left index finger in one half of experimental trials. A visual signal occurred close to the finger in half of the trials, independent of somatosensory stimuli. A novel Near infrared caloric vestibular stimulus (NirCVS) was used to artificially activate the vestibular organs. Sham stimulations were used to control for non-specific effects of NirCVS. We found that both visual and vestibular events increased somatosensory sensitivity. Critically, we found no evidence for supra-additive multisensory enhancement when both visual and vestibular signals were administered together: in fact, we found a trend towards sub-additive interaction. The results are compatible with a vestibular role in somatosensory gain regulation.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Elisa Raffaella Ferre
    Date Deposited: 08 Sep 2021 09:02
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:12


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