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Their pain is not our pain: brain and autonomic correlates of empathic resonance with the pain of same and different race individuals.

Azevedo, RT and Macaluso, E and Avenanti, A and Santangelo, V and Cazzato, V and Aglioti, SM (2013) Their pain is not our pain: brain and autonomic correlates of empathic resonance with the pain of same and different race individuals. Human Brain Mapping, 34 (12). pp. 3168-3181. ISSN 1097-0193

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Abstract

Recent advances in social neuroscience research have unveiled the neurophysiological correlates of race and intergroup processing. However, little is known about the neural mechanisms underlying intergroup empathy. Combining event-related fMRI with measurements of pupil dilation as an index of autonomic reactivity, we explored how race and group membership affect empathy-related responses. White and Black subjects were presented with video clips depicting white, black, and unfamiliar violet-skinned hands being either painfully penetrated by a syringe or being touched by a Q-tip. Both hemodynamic activity within areas known to be involved in the processing of first and third-person emotional experiences of pain, i.e., bilateral anterior insula, and autonomic reactivity were greater for the pain experienced by own-race compared to that of other-race and violet models. Interestingly, greater implicit racial bias predicted increased activity within the left anterior insula during the observation of own-race pain relative to other-race pain. Our findings highlight the close link between group-based segregation and empathic processing. Moreover, they demonstrate the relative influence of culturally acquired implicit attitudes and perceived similarity/familiarity with the target in shaping emotional responses to others' physical pain.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Azevedo, R. T., Macaluso, E., Avenanti, A., Santangelo, V., Cazzato, V. and Aglioti, S. M. (2013), Their pain is not our pain: Brain and autonomic correlates of empathic resonance with the pain of same and different race individuals. Hum. Brain Mapp, which has been published in final form at http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hbm.22133. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1109 Neurosciences, 1702 Cognitive Science
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Divisions: Natural Sciences and Psychology
Publisher: Wiley
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2016 10:05
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2016 10:05
DOI or Identification number: 10.1002/hbm.22133
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/3096

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