If you forget and nobody knows, it’s like nothing happened


The capacity to deceive others is a complex mental skill that requires the ability to suppress truthful information. The polygraph is widely used in countries such as the USA to detect deception. However, little is known about the effects of emotional processes (such as the fear of being found guilty despite being innocent) on the physiological responses that are used to detect lies. The aim of this study was to investigate the time course and neural correlates of untruthful behavior by analyzing electrocortical indexes in response to visually presented neutral and affective questions. […]

The ERP data [An event-related potential (ERP) is the measured brain response that is the direct result of a specific sensory, cognitive, or motor event] show the existence of a reliable neural marker of lying in the form of an increased amplitude of the N400 component (which likely indexes conscious control processing) in frontal and prefrontal regions of the left hemisphere between 300 and 400 ms post-stimulus. Importantly, this marker was observed to be independent of the affective value of the question.

{ PLoS | Continue reading }

photo { Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin }