Facial emotion recognition, face scan paths, and face perception in children with neurofibromatosis type 1

Amelia K. Lewis*, Melanie A. Porter, Tracey A. Williams, Samantha Bzishvili, Kathryn N. North, Jonathan M. Payne

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    6 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Objective: This study aimed to investigate face scan paths and face perception abilities in children with Neurofibromatosis Type 1 (NF1) and how these might relate to emotion recognition abilities in this population. Method: The authors investigated facial emotion recognition, face scan paths, and face perception in 29 children with NF1 compared to 29 chronological age-matched typically developing controls. Correlations between facial emotion recognition, face scan paths, and face perception in children with NF1 were examined. Results: Children with NF1 displayed significantly poorer recognition of fearful expressions compared to controls, as well as a nonsignificant trend toward poorer recognition of anger. Athough there was no significant difference between groups in time spent viewing individual core facial features (eyes, nose, mouth, and nonfeature regions), children with NF1 spent significantly less time than controls viewing the face as a whole. Children with NF1 also displayed significantly poorer face perception abilities than typically developing controls. Facial emotion recognition deficits were not significantly associated with aberrant face scan paths or face perception abilities in the NF1 group. Conclusions: These results suggest that impairments in the perception, identification, and interpretation of information from faces are important aspects of the social-cognitive phenotype of NF1.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)361-370
    Number of pages10
    JournalNeuropsychology
    Volume31
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - May 2017

    Keywords

    • emotion recognition
    • face perception
    • Neurofibromatosis Type I
    • scan paths

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