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Positive self-perception and corticospinal excitability: Recalling positive behavior expands peripersonal space boundaries.

08:00 EDT 8th October 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Positive self-perception and corticospinal excitability: Recalling positive behavior expands peripersonal space boundaries."

Converging evidence suggests that peripersonal space has dynamic properties, which can be influenced by motor and cognitive factors. Here, we investigated whether changes in self-perception may impact upon peripersonal representation. Specifically, employing non-invasive brain stimulation, we tested whether corticospinal excitability elicited by objects placed in the vertical peripersonal vs extrapersonal space can be influenced by changes in self-perception after recalling a personal experience inducing the feeling of high power (vs. positivity vs. low power). In a preliminary study (Study 1, N = 39) participants were presented with an object, whose position was manipulated in the horizontal vs vertical space. We assessed corticospinal excitability by measuring Motor Evoked Potentials (MEPs) using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation with Electromyography co-registration (TMS-EMG). In the horizontal condition, we replicated the well-known motor facilitation induced by objects falling in the peri vs extrapersonal space, while in the vertical dimension MEPs were higher in the extrapersonal space. In the main experiment (Study 2), participants (N = 55) were randomly assigned to feel high power, low power, or a general positive emotion and were asked to observe the same object positioned either in the peripersonal or in the extrapersonal vertical space. Results showed that in the low power condition MEPs were higher in the extrapersonal vs peripersonal, as in Study 1, while in high power and positive conditions MEPs were not influenced by distance. Taken together, our findings suggest a dissociable pattern of motor facilitation underlying vertical vs horizontal space perception and, crucially, that changes in self-perception can influence such a representation.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Neuropsychologia
ISSN: 1873-3514
Pages: 107224

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