Coalescence of dominance motivation and responses to facial anger in resting-state and event-related electrophysiology
Number of pages
SourceNeuroImage, 79, (2013), pp. 138-144
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ DCC CO
SubjectAction, intention, and motor control
People vary in their proneness to dominate as a function of their motivation to fulfill their need for reward and social status. Recent research suggests that in humans dominant individuals respond vigilantly to angry faces, whereas non-dominant individuals rapidly signal submission. Dominance motivation has been suggested to reside in asymmetrical patterns of cortical and subcortical processing. The ratio between delta and beta band oscillations has been proposed as a proxy for this asymmetry, which we here aimed to map onto individual patterns of the event-related potentials (N170) as well as behavioral responses to facial anger in the context of dominance motivation. Results show that dominance motivation indeed predicts increased delta in the delta/beta asymmetry; a pattern that further translates into behavioral vigilance as well as attenuation of the event-related response to angry faces. The present data are interpreted to suggest that dominance motivation is related to increased subcortical and decreased cortical processing, and that this translates into increased vigilance in dominance challenges. This motivational state is further characterized by less detailed processing of facial information as reflected in the attenuation of N170 amplitude.
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