Dr Kirsten McKenzie has received a grant from the Faculty of Science Pump Priming fund to investigate somatosensory illusions.
Dr McKenzie says: "When we experience a somatic (touch) sensation such as pain, we assume it is caused by something happening to, or within, our body. However, there are numerous cases in which an individual’s somatic perception proves to be a misrepresentation of bodily events, such as phantom limb syndrome and medically unexplained symptoms. These misperceptions are estimated to account for up to one third of visits to medical practitioners. We will use Electroencephalography to record the electrical impulses in the brain in order to understand the neural timings involved in the formation and maintenance of illusory touch sensations or somatic misperception in healthy individuals, and the factors that may modify this experience."
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