Perception of biological motion and emotion in mild cognitive impairment and dementia

Henry, Julie D., Thompson, Claire, Rendell, Peter G., Phillips, Louise H., Carbert, Jessica, Sachdev, Perminder, and Brodaty, Henry (2012) Perception of biological motion and emotion in mild cognitive impairment and dementia. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 18 (5). pp. 866-873.

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Participants diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), dementia and controls completed measures that required decoding emotions from point-light displays of bodily motion, and static images of facial affect. Both of these measures tap social cognitive processes that are considered critical for social competency. Consistent with prior literature, both clinical groups were impaired on the static measure of facial affect recognition. The dementia (but not the MCI) group additionally showed difficulties interpreting biological motion cues. However, this did not reflect a specific deficit in decoding emotions, but instead a more generalized difficulty in processing visual motion (both to action and to emotion). These results align with earlier studies showing that visual motion processing is disrupted in dementia, but additionally show for the first time that this extends to the recognition of socially relevant biological motion. The absence of any MCI related impairment on the point-light biological emotion measure (coupled with deficits on the measure of facial affect recognition) also point to a potential disconnect between the processes implicated in the perception of emotion cues from static versus dynamic stimuli. For clinical (but not control) participants, performance on all recognition measures was inversely correlated with level of semantic memory impairment.

Item ID: 22061
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1469-7661
Keywords: aging, emotion recognition, visual motion, point-light walkers, social cognition, semantic memory
Date Deposited: 03 Jul 2012 05:20
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing @ 80%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110319 Psychiatry (incl Psychotherapy) @ 20%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920502 Health Related to Ageing @ 80%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920410 Mental Health @ 20%
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