Affective priming from faces: the influence of spatial frequency, prime duration and amygdala damage

R. Palermo, L. Schmalzl, L. Miller

    Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


    It has been proposed that facial expressions, particularly those conveying threat, are rapidly and coarsely processed via a subcortical pathway to the amygdala. This pathway may be especially tuned to low spatial frequency information, with low, but not high, spatial frequency fearful faces activating the superior colliculus, thalamus and amygdala. This study used an affective priming task to examine the impact of different types of spatial frequency information on affective processing in healthy controls and individuals with temporal lobe epilepsy that may have amygdale damage. Low, high, and broad spatial frequency facial expressions were used as primes to examine whether the spatial frequency of the prime face modulates affective priming. Affective priming was apparent for both low and high spatial frequency prime faces when they were presented for 200 ms, but not when the prime faces were presented for 17 ms. Right hemisphere structures may be involved in affective priming from facial expressions, with preliminary evidence suggesting that affective priming may be reduced for individuals with right temporal lobe epilepsy.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)87
    Number of pages1
    JournalAustralian Journal of Psychology
    Issue numberSuppl. 1
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    Event33rd Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference - University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
    Duration: 20 Apr 200623 Apr 2006


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