You or me? Case study published in Cortex
Michela Bassolino and colleagues' recent case study entitled "You or me? Disentangling perspectival, perceptual, and integrative mechanisms in heterotopagnosia" has been published in Cortex. The results offer a new interpretation of Heterotopagnosia-without-Autotopagnosia (HwA), which is characterized by the incapacity to point to body parts on others, but not on one's own body,
In close collaboration with clinicians at the Clinique Romande de Réadaptation (Sion), Michela Bassolino and colleagues conducted a study with a patient showing a rare body-related disorder, classically called heterotopagnosia. Using a virtual reality study paradigm, the Blanke lab team was able to demonstrate that a deficit in matching somatosensory stimuli from one's own body with visual bodily stimuli of a body with different perspectival and other spatial attributes is the core deficit in HwA. VR technology was integral to demonstrating this matching process as it allowed systematically dissociating identity as well as the perspectival and spatial congruency between cues from own and other bodies. This work thus strongly encourages the use of VR protocols for the assessment and potential treatment of body-related disorders.
Support for this study was provided by the Swiss National Science Foundation, Ambizione grant to MB (PZ00P1_161210) and the Bertarelli Foundation.
Bassolino, M., Bouzerda-Wahlen, A., Moix, V., Bellmann, A., Herbelin, B., Serino, A., & Blanke, O. (2019). You or me? Disentangling perspectival, perceptual, and integrative mechanisms in heterotopagnosia. Cortex; a Journal Devoted to the Study of the Nervous System and Behavior, 120, 212‑222. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cortex.2019.05.017