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dc.contributor.authorAzhari, Atiqahen_US
dc.contributor.authorLim, Mengyuen_US
dc.contributor.authorBizzego, Andreaen_US
dc.contributor.authorGabrieli, Giulioen_US
dc.contributor.authorBornstein, Marc H.en_US
dc.contributor.authorEsposito, Gianlucaen_US
dc.identifier.citationAzhari, A., Lim, M., Bizzego, A., Gabrieli, G., Bornstein, M. H., & Esposito, G. (2020). Physical presence of spouse enhances brain-to-brain synchrony in co-parenting couples. Scientific Reports, 10(1),7569-. doi:10.1038/s41598-020-63596-2en_US
dc.description.abstractCo-parenting spouses who live together remain in close physical proximity to each other and regularly engage in reciprocal social interactions in joint endeavors to coordinate their caregiving. Although bi-parental rearing is a common occurrence in humans, the influence of the physical presence of a co-parenting spouse on parental brain responses remains largely unknown. Synchrony is conceptualized as the matching of behavioral and physiological signals between two individuals. In this study, we examined how the presence of a co-parenting spouse influences brain-to-brain synchrony when attending to salient infant and adult vocalizations. We hypothesized that brain-to-brain synchrony would be greater in the presence of a spousal partner. Functional Near-infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) was used on 24 mother-father dyads (N = 48) to measure prefrontal cortical (PFC) activities while they listened to infant and adult vocalizations in two conditions, together (in the same room at the same time) and separately (in different rooms at different times). Couples showed greater synchrony in the together condition; when comparing fNIRS data between true couples and randomly matched controls, this synchronous effect was only seen in true couples, indicating a unique effect of spousal co-regulation toward salient stimuli. Our results indicate that the physical presence of the spouse might establish synchrony in attentional regulation mechanisms toward socially relevant stimuli. This finding holds implications for the role of the co-parenting spouse in influencing social and parental brain mechanisms.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipMinistry of Education (MOE)en_US
dc.relationNAP SUG 2015 (GE)en_US
dc.relationACR Tier 1 (GE)en_US
dc.relation.ispartofScientific Reportsen_US
dc.rights© 2020 The Author(s). This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
dc.subjectSocial sciences::Psychologyen_US
dc.titlePhysical presence of spouse enhances brain-to-brain synchrony in co-parenting couplesen_US
dc.typeJournal Articleen
dc.contributor.schoolSchool of Social Sciencesen_US
dc.contributor.schoolLee Kong Chian School of Medicine (LKCMedicine)en_US
dc.description.versionPublished versionen_US
dc.description.acknowledgementThis research was supported by NAP SUG 2015 (GE), Singapore Ministry of Education ACR Tier 1 (GE), the Intramural Research Program of the NIH/NICHD, USA (MHB), and an International Research Fellowship at the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), London, UK (MHB), funded by the European Research Council (ERC) under the Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 695300-HKADeC-ERC-2015-AdG).en_US
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