Information Services banner Edinburgh Research Archive The University of Edinburgh crest

Edinburgh Research Archive >
Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences, School of >
Psychology >
Psychology Masters thesis collection >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:

This item has been viewed 59 times in the last year. View Statistics

Files in This Item:

File Description SizeFormat
Oliver 2011 MSc.pdfMSc thesis2.81 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
Title: Social Cognition in Frontotemporal Dementia, Motor Neurone Disease, and Alzheimer's Disease
Authors: Oliver, Lindsay
Supervisor(s): MacPherson, Sarah
Abrahams, Sharon
Issue Date: 23-Nov-2011
Publisher: The University of Edinburgh
Abstract: The orbitofrontal cortex and ventromedial prefrontal cortex have been implicated in many aspects of social cognition, and conditions that affect these regions are thereby accompanied by deficits in interpersonal behaviour. In order to assess social cognition across a number of neurodegenerative diseases, a test battery and two questionnaires were administered to frontal variant frontotemporal dementia (fvFTD), motor neurone disease (MND), Alzheimer`s disease, and healthy control participant groups. This included the newly developed Social Rule Break Cartoons task, which is a visually presented test tapping several aspects of social cognition. An exercise-smoking Implicit Association Test (IAT) and sweets or alcohol-healthy food IAT were also administered to investigate whether an inability to automatically access associated social knowledge may underlie some of the behavioural alterations seen in fvFTD, and increased appetite, sweet food preference, and drinking and smoking in particular. The FTD patient group was found to score significantly lower than the MND and control groups on faux pas detection and theory of ming questions on the Faux Pas Test, as expected. Their scores on social rule knowledge questions of the Social Rule Break Cartoons task also tended towards being significantly lower, and they demonstrated overall behaviour changes on the family-rated Frontal Systems Behavior Scale. This pointed towards a social cognition deficit in the FTD group, possibly seated in social knowledge impairments. No other significant differences were found across patient groups on the social cognition tests or the IATs, though individual patient performance fell in line with previous findings in terms of neural substrates, behavioural manifestations, and disease progression. Future studies including larger patient groups may provide further insight into the specificity and sensitivity of the Social Rule Break Cartoons task, and allow for a pattern in IAT performance to emerge.
Keywords: social cognition
frontotemporal dementia
motor neurone disease
Alzheimer's disease
Social Rule Break Cartoons
Implicit Association Test
Appears in Collections:Psychology Masters thesis collection

Items in ERA are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.


Valid XHTML 1.0! Unless explicitly stated otherwise, all material is copyright © The University of Edinburgh 2013, and/or the original authors. Privacy and Cookies Policy