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Peri-personal space encoding in patients with disorders of consciousness and cognitive-motor dissociation

Noel, Jean-Paul and Chatelle, Camille and Perdikis, Serafeim and Jöhr, Jane and Lopes Da Silva, Marina and Ryvlin, Philippe and De Lucia, Marzia and Millán, José del R and Diserens, Karin and Serino, Andrea (2019) 'Peri-personal space encoding in patients with disorders of consciousness and cognitive-motor dissociation.' NeuroImage: Clinical, 24. ISSN 2213-1582

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Abstract

Behavioral assessments of consciousness based on overt command following cannot differentiate patients with disorders of consciousness (DOC) from those who demonstrate a dissociation between intent/awareness and motor capacity: cognitive motor dissociation (CMD). We argue that delineation of peri-personal space (PPS) – the multisensory-motor space immediately surrounding the body – may differentiate these patients due to its central role in mediating human-environment interactions, and putatively in scaffolding a minimal form of selfhood. In Experiment 1, we determined a normative physiological index of PPS by recording electrophysiological (EEG) responses to tactile, auditory, or audio-tactile stimulation at different distances (5 vs. 75 cm) in healthy volunteers (N = 19). Contrasts between paired (AT) and summed (A + T) responses demonstrated multisensory supra-additivity when AT stimuli were presented near, i.e., within the PPS, and highlighted somatosensory-motor sensors as electrodes of interest. In Experiment 2, we recorded EEG in patients behaviorally diagnosed as DOC or putative CMD (N = 17, 30 sessions). The PPS-measure developed in Experiment 1 was analyzed in relation with both standard clinical diagnosis (i.e., Coma Recovery Scale; CRS-R) and a measure of neural complexity associated with consciousness. Results demonstrated a significant correlation between the PPS measure and neural complexity, but not with the CRS-R, highlighting the added value of the physiological recordings. Further, multisensory processing in PPS was preserved in putative CMD but not in DOC patients. Together, the findings suggest that indexing PPS allows differentiating between groups of patients whom both show overt motor impairments (DOC and CMD) but putatively distinct levels of awareness or motor intent.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Disorders of consciousness, Motor-cognitive dissociation, Electroencephalography, Brain injury, Peri-personal space, Multisensory
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Computer Science and Electronic Engineering, School of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2019 10:33
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2019 10:33
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/25167

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