3 years ago

Body ownership determines the attenuation of self-generated tactile sensations [Psychological and Cognitive Sciences]

Body ownership determines the attenuation of self-generated tactile sensations [Psychological and Cognitive Sciences]
Konstantina Kilteni, H. Henrik Ehrsson

Self-perception depends on the brain’s abilities to differentiate our body from the environment and to distinguish between the sensations generated as a consequence of voluntary movement and those arising from events in the external world. The first process refers to the sense of ownership of our body and relies on the dynamic integration of multisensory (afferent) signals. The second process depends on internal forward models that use (efferent) information from our motor commands to predict and attenuate the sensory consequences of our movements. However, the relationship between body ownership and sensory attenuation driven by the forward models remains unknown. To address this issue, we combined the rubber hand illusion, which allows experimental manipulation of body ownership, and the force-matching paradigm, which allows psychophysical quantification of somatosensory attenuation. We found that a rubber right hand pressing on the left index finger produced somatosensory attenuation but only when the model hand felt like one’s own (illusory self-touch); reversely, the attenuation that was expected to occur during actual self-touch with the real hands was reduced when the participants simultaneously experienced ownership of a rubber right hand that was placed at a distance from their left hand. These results demonstrate that the sense of body ownership determines somatosensory attenuation. From a theoretical perspective, our results are important because they suggest that body ownership updates the internal representation of body state that provides the input to the forward model generating sensory predictions during voluntary action.

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.