Site of stimulation effects on the prevalence of the tactile motion aftereffect

  • Planetta P
  • Servos P
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The motion aftereffect (MAE) refers to the apparent motion of a stationary stimulus following adaptation to a continuously moving stimulus. There is a growing consensus that the fast adapting (FA) rather than the slowly adapting (SA) afferent units mediate the tactile version of the MAE. The present study investigated which FA units underlie the tactile MAE by measuring its prevalence, duration, and vividness on different skin areas that vary in their composition of FA units. Specifically, the right cheek, volar surface of the forearm, and volar surface of the hand were adapted using a ridged cylindrical drum, which rotated at 60 rpm for 120 s. Although there was no difference in duration or vividness between the skin surfaces tested, the tactile MAE was reported twice as often on the hand compared to the cheek and forearm, which did not differ significantly from one another. This suggests that the FA I units in the glabrous skin and the hair follicle and/or the FA I and field units in the hairy skin contribute to the tactile MAE.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Cutaneous afferents
  • Mechanoreceptors
  • Motion aftereffect
  • Perceptual illusion
  • Sensory adaptation
  • Tactual perception

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  • Peggy J. Planetta

  • Philip Servos

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