Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 364–377

Dynamics of alpha oscillations elucidate facial affect recognition in schizophrenia

  • Tzvetan G. Popov
  • Brigitte S. Rockstroh
  • Petia Popova
  • Almut M. Carolus
  • Gregory A. Miller
Article

DOI: 10.3758/s13415-013-0194-2

Cite this article as:
Popov, T.G., Rockstroh, B.S., Popova, P. et al. Cogn Affect Behav Neurosci (2014) 14: 364. doi:10.3758/s13415-013-0194-2

Abstract

Impaired facial affect recognition is characteristic of schizophrenia and has been related to impaired social function, but the relevant neural mechanisms have not been fully identified. The present study sought to identify the role of oscillatory alpha activity in that deficit during the process of facial emotion recognition. Neuromagnetic brain activity was monitored while 44 schizophrenia patients and 44 healthy controls viewed 5-s videos showing human faces gradually changing from neutral to fearful or happy expressions or from the neutral face of one poser to the neutral face of another. Recognition performance was determined separately by self-report. Relative to prestimulus baseline, controls exhibited a 10- to 15-Hz power increase prior to full recognition and a 10- to 15-Hz power decrease during the postrecognition phase. These results support recent proposals about the function of alpha-band oscillations in normal stimulus evaluation. The patients failed to show this sequence of alpha power increase and decrease and also showed low 10- to 15-Hz power and high 10- to 15-Hz connectivity during the prestimulus baseline. In light of the proposal that a combination of alpha power increase and functional disconnection facilitates information intake and processing, the finding of an abnormal association of low baseline alpha power and high connectivity in schizophrenia suggests a state of impaired readiness that fosters abnormal dynamics during facial affect recognition.

Keywords

Schizophrenia Facial affect recognition Alpha oscillations Emotion Event processing Functional connectivity Neural networks 

Supplementary material

13415_2013_194_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.1 mb)
ESM 1(PDF 1.10 MB)

Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tzvetan G. Popov
    • 1
  • Brigitte S. Rockstroh
    • 1
    • 3
  • Petia Popova
    • 1
  • Almut M. Carolus
    • 1
  • Gregory A. Miller
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of KonstanzKonstanzGermany
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyUniversity of KonstanzKonstanzGermany

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