The research group of Professor Norihiro Sadato of the National Institute for Physiological Sciences and Professor Hiroki Tanabe of Nagoya University not only pay attention to each other when humans are staring at others, but also eye movements including blinking and frontal lobe. We found that some activities were also synchronized.It may be a hint to facilitate communication.
The state in which humans stare at each other and pay attention to each other is a necessary preparatory step before complex communication.This state is called attention sharing and can be considered as a necessary stage for various communication behaviors.This is something that you naturally acquire in the process of growth, but the details of what is happening to your brain at this time have not been revealed.
To clarify this, we asked two subjects who met for the first time to stare at each other and tried to measure the activity of the brain at that time.In this study, we focused on the following three points and measured for two days.
1. What kind of phenomenon is apparently occurring when sharing attention?
2. Does a different phenomenon occur between the person you meet for the first time and the person who has shared your attention once?
3. What is the activity of the cranial nerves during attention sharing?
On the first day, synchronization did not occur in the blink of an eye, but a part of the cerebral cortex showed synchronized activity. In the measurement on the second day, synchronization was also observed in the blink of an eye, and it was also found that the range in which the brain activity was synchronized was expanded.From these facts, Professor Sadato concluded that attention sharing has the function of connecting the two through unconscious behavior called blinking and synchronizing the state of brain activity.Synchronizing the patterns of brain activity by sharing attention by staring at each other may help facilitate subsequent communication.
In the future, we plan to clarify this mechanism in more detail.It is expected that progress in research will lead to the development of information transmission methods that are useful in educational settings and behavioral therapies for diseases that are not good at communication.