August 2014
Volume 14, Issue 10
Free
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2014
Enhancing facial identity perception using high frequency transcranial random noise stimulation
Author Affiliations
  • Michael Banissy
    Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Bradley Duchaine
    Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Dartmouth College
  • Tirta Susilo
    Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Dartmouth College
  • Constantin Rezlescu
    Department of Psychology, Harvard University
  • Aleksandra Romanska
    Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths, University of London
Journal of Vision August 2014, Vol.14, 553. doi:10.1167/14.10.553
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      Michael Banissy, Bradley Duchaine, Tirta Susilo, Constantin Rezlescu, Aleksandra Romanska; Enhancing facial identity perception using high frequency transcranial random noise stimulation. Journal of Vision 2014;14(10):553. doi: 10.1167/14.10.553.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Recently, a number of studies have begun to highlight the potential of transcranial electrical stimulation as a tool to facilitate a variety of cognitive and perceptual abilities. Despite this, few studies have examined the utility of this approach for the processing of social cues. Here, we conducted two experiments to explore whether a single session of high frequency transcranial random noise stimulation (tRNS) targeted at posterior temporal cortices would enhance facial identity perception. In experiment 1, participants received twenty minutes of active high frequency tRNS or sham stimulation prior to completing tasks examining facial identity perception (Cambridge Face Perception Test) or trustworthiness perception. In the Cambridge Face Perception Test, participants were required to sort pictures of faces according to the degree of similarity between a target face and six images that were morphed between the target face and another person. In the trustworthiness task, participants were shown six faces that varied in their ratings of perceived trustworthiness; the participants' task was to sort the faces from most to least trustworthy. Active tRNS facilitated facial identity perception, but not trustworthiness perception. In experiment 2, participants received twenty minutes of active high frequency tRNS targeted at posterior temporal cortices or motor cortices prior to completing the Cambridge Face Perception Test. TRNS targeted at posterior temporal cortices enhanced performance relative to motor cortex stimulation. These findings show task and site specific enhancements in facial identity perception following high frequency tRNS targeted at posterior temporal brain areas.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2014

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