Parental neural responsivity to infants' visual attention: How mature brains influence immature brains during social interaction.
Covarrubias, Lorena Santamaria
Public Library of Science (PLoS)
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Wass, S. V., Noreika, V., Georgieva, S., Clackson, K., Brightman, L., Nutbrown, R., Covarrubias, L. S., & et al. (2018). Parental neural responsivity to infants' visual attention: How mature brains influence immature brains during social interaction.. PLoS biology, 16 (12), e2006328. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.2006328
Almost all attention and learning - in particular, most early learning – takes place in social settings. But little is known of how our brains support dynamic social interactions. We recorded dual-EEG from 12-month-old infants and parents during solo play and joint play. During solo play, fluctuations in infants’ Theta power significantly forward-predicted their subsequent attentional behaviours. But this forwards-predictiveness was lower during joint play than solo play, suggesting that infants’ endogenous neural control over attention is greater during solo play. Overall, however, infants were more attentive to the objects during joint play. To understand why, we examined how adult brain activity related to infant attention. We found that parents’ Theta power closely tracked and responded to changes in their infants’ attention. Further, instances in which parents showed greater neural responsivity were associated with longer sustained attention by infants. Our results offer new insights into how one partner influences another during social interaction.
Brain, Humans, Electroencephalography, Family, Parents, Mothers, Interpersonal Relations, Comprehension, Learning, Attention, Adult, Infant, Female, Male
The research was funded by ESRC Grant numbers ES/N006461/1 to VL and SW, ES/N017560/1 to SW
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.2006328
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/287389
Attribution 4.0 International
Licence URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/