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Fronto-temporoparietal connectivity and self-awareness in 18-month-olds: A resting state fNIRS study

Bulgarelli, Chiara and Blasi, Anna and de Klerk, Carina CJM and Richards, John E and Hamilton, Antonia and Southgate, Victoria (2019) 'Fronto-temporoparietal connectivity and self-awareness in 18-month-olds: A resting state fNIRS study.' Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 38. ISSN 1878-9293

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Abstract

How and when a concept of the ‘self’ emerges has been the topic of much interest in developmental psychology. Self-awareness has been proposed to emerge at around 18 months, when toddlers start to show evidence of physical self-recognition. However, to what extent physical self-recognition is a valid indicator of being able to think about oneself, is debated. Research in adult cognitive neuroscience has suggested that a common network of brain regions called Default Mode Network (DMN), including the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) and the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), is recruited when we are reflecting on the self. We hypothesized that if mirror self-recognition involves self-awareness, toddlers who exhibit mirror self-recognition might show increased functional connectivity between frontal and temporoparietal regions of the brain, relative to those toddlers who do not yet show mirror self-recognition. Using fNIRS, we collected resting-state data from 18 Recognizers and 22 Non-Recognizers at 18 months of age. We found significantly stronger fronto-temporoparietal connectivity in Recognizers compared to Non-Recognizers, a finding which might support the hypothesized relationship between mirror-self recognition and self-awareness in infancy.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Self-awareness, fNIRS, Functional connectivity, Resting-state, Toddler development, Default mode network
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 29 Jul 2019 14:09
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2019 14:09
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/24956

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