ABSTRACT Title of dissertation: THE EMOTIONAL MODULATION OF THE STARTLE REFLEX IN 9-MONTH-OLD INFANTS
The blink reflex was elicited in 50 children from birth to 3 years of age. In the awake state, the R1 response was always obtained; R2 responses, especially contralateral ones, were more difficult to elicit under 9 months of age. R1 latency and VIIth motor nerve conduction variations were a good witness of the peripheral nervous system maturation. The influence of the different states of waking and sleeping on these reflex responses was studied. These results and some of the mechanisms that underlie these changes are discussed.