Infant communicative signals elicit differential brain dynamics in fathers and non-fathers
Date of Issue2018
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
Responses to infant signals are critical to infant development and well-being. However, brain mechanisms underlying paternal responses to infant crying are still largely unknown. Here using EEG, we investigated brain activations in two different groups, 10 fathers and 10 non-fathers, in response to infant-related sounds: typically developing infants’ cry(TD), ASD infants’ cry(ASD), infants’ laughter(LAU), and white noise(WN). Event Related Potentials in the first second after stimuli onset were analyzed. Analysis revealed a significant interaction between group and stimulus type in the left dorsolateral frontal cluster of electrodes, a brain area involved in motor programming and communicative signals’ processing. A main effect of group in response to all auditory stimuli, irrespective of stimulus duration, emerged in the right temporal and parietal clusters. The different levels of familiarity and distinct processing strategies found in response to infant vocalizations shed light on the physiological mechanisms underlying adaptive paternal responses to infants’ behaviours.
Early Child Development and Care
© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is the author created version of a work that has been peer reviewed and accepted for publication by Early Child Development and Care, Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. It incorporates referee’s comments but changes resulting from the publishing process, such as copyediting, structural formatting, may not be reflected in this document. The published version is available at: [http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03004430.2018.1482890].