Neural and behavioral signature of human social perception.

Ana Saitovitch, Hervé Lemaitre, Elza Rechtman, Alice Vinçon-Leite, Raphael Calmon, David Grévent, Volodia Dangouloff-Ros, Francis Brunelle, Nathalie Boddaert, Monica Zilbovicius
Sci Rep. 2019-06-25; 9(1):
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-44977-8

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Social behavior is extremely variable among individuals, and the neural basis of
this variability is still poorly understood. In this study, we aimed to
investigate the neural basis of interindividual variability in the first step of
social behavior, that is, social perception. For that purpose, we first used
eye-tracking to measure social perception during the passive visualization of
socially relevant movie clips. Second, we correlated eye-tracking data with
measures of rest cerebral blood flow (CBF) obtained using arterial spin-labeling
(ASL) MRI, an index of local rest brain function. The results showed a large
interindividual variability in the number of fixations to the eyes of characters
during passive visualization of movie clips displaying social interactions.
Moreover, individual patterns remained stable across time, suggesting an
individual signature of social behavior. Whole-brain analyses showed significant
positive correlation between the number of fixations to the eyes and rest CBF:
individuals who looked more to the eyes were those with higher rest CBF levels
within the right superior temporal regions. Our results indicate the existence of
a neural and behavioral signature associated with the interindividual variability
in social perception.

DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-44977-8
PMCID: PMC6593101
PMID: 31239453

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