DOI: 10.14704/nq.2017.15.3.1084

EEG Study of the Disgust and Pleasant Stimuli Perception in 5-6 Years Children and Adults

GV Portnova


The perception of visual emotional stimuli develops during the human ontogeny. The purpose of this study is to find developmental electrophysiological changes in human emotional perception. We compared EEG power spectrum density recorded in 5- to 6-year-old children (N=27) and adults (N=28) in response to different pleasant, disgust and neutral visual stimulation, including severely damaged human faces, food, insects, snakes, kids, animal cubs and neutral stimuli. Brain electrical activity was recorded using a 19-channel EEG recording device, "Encephalan", with the recording of polygraph channels. Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) was used to analyze the frequency spectrum (2-3 Hz, 3-4 Hz, etc., 19-20 Hz). The beta-and theta-rhythm power was higher compared to background in children and lower in adults during presentation of images of damaged human faces, insects, and snakes. The ECG heart rate was significantly higher during damaged faces presentation compared to the background only in children. Our findings indicate that the perception of damaged human faces excludes empathy component of perception in children.


Electroencephalography, Fast Fourier Transform, Pleasant And Unpleasant Stimuli, Ontogeny, Empathy.

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