Sex differences in mental rotation: Cortical functional connectivity using direct transfer function

Greeshma Sharma, Anson Anto, Vijander Singh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Previous studies have reported that sex differences exist in mental rotation (MR) through different activated cortical regions, but it remains unclear what could be possible reasons of such differences in the different processing stages of MR. A few Event related potential (ERP) studies have noticed that sex differences occur in relatively early cognitive processing stages, but none of the study has viewed directional flow of information in the earlier stages as a function of complexity in men and women. This study investigated possible reasons for sex differences in visuospatial performance by flux of information underlying cortical functional connectivity. In the present study, earlier two stages were identified as a) perceptual encoding, identification, and discrimination of objects, kept under visuospatial attention allocation network (VSAN) and b) rotation ability involving spatial transformation strategy, assigned in mental rotation network (MRN). Participants underwent 3D mental rotation task with varying difficulty levels, simultaneously having electroencephalogram (EEG). It has been confirmed in behavioural outcome, as angular disparity increases, reaction and accuracy trades off. There were different activated electrodes in male and female participants for both networks. Advantage of spatial working memory was evident in men and reflected during performance. Also, VSAN showed that men utilised bottom-up attentional processes for more rotated views. MRN exhibited hemispheric lateralisation in the parietal cortex; men showed higher activation in right parietal cortex. This research work offers promising perspective to the study of cortical functional connectivity, in the terms of strength and direction, during sub-processes of MR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)425-432
Number of pages8
JournalBiomedical Signal Processing and Control
Volume40
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01-02-2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Signal Processing
  • Health Informatics

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