Extended multisensory space in blind cane users.


In the present work, we investigated whether an auditory peripersonal space exists around the hand and whether such a space might be extended by a brief tool-use experience or by long-term experience using a tool in everyday life. To this end, we studied audio-tactile integration in the space around the hand and in far space, in blind subjects who regularly used a cane to navigate and in sighted subjects, before and after brief training with the cane. In sighted subjects, auditory peripersonal space was limited to around the hand before tool use, then expanded after tool use, and contracted backward after a resting period. In contrast, in blind subjects, peri-hand space was immediately expanded when they held the cane but was limited to around the hand when they held a short handle. These results suggest that long-term experience with the cane induces a durable extension of the peripersonal space.

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@article{Serino2007ExtendedMS, title={Extended multisensory space in blind cane users.}, author={Andrea Serino and Michela Bassolino and Alessandro Farn{\`e} and Elisabetta L{\`a}davas}, journal={Psychological science}, year={2007}, volume={18 7}, pages={642-8} }