Trinh Nguyen, Drew H. Abney, Dina Salamander, Bennett I. Bertenthal, Stefanie Hoehl, ’Proximity and touch are associated with neural but not physiological synchrony in naturalistic mother-infant interactions’, NeuroImage, Volume 244, 2021, 118599, ISSN 1053-8119, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2021.118599.
The present research is the first multi-level hyperscanning study on naturalistic mother-infant interactions with infants as young as 4 months of age. (…) This is the first evidence that touch mediates mutual attunement of brain activities, but not cardio-respiratory rhythms in caregiver-infant dyads during naturalistic interactions. Our results (…) suggest that neural synchrony serves as a biological pathway of how social touch plays into infant development and how this pathway could be utilized to support infant learning and social bonding. (…) The present study highlights the exciting opportunities of multi-level hyperscanning to uncover neurobiological pathways of early social communication and to provide a deeper understanding of the link between body and brain in human development.