Jan R. Wiersema

Jan R. Wiersema
Ghent University | UGhent · Department of Experimental Clinical and Health Psychology

PhD

About

154
Publications
33,297
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3,819
Citations
Citations since 2017
50 Research Items
2188 Citations
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Publications

Publications (154)
Article
Full-text available
Humans are inclined to preferentially process self-related content, referred to as the ‘self-bias’. Different paradigms have been used to study this effect. However, not all paradigms included a familiar other condition (but rather an unfamiliar other condition), needed to differentiate self-specific effects from the impact of familiarity. The prim...
Article
Detecting biological motion is essential for adaptive social behavior. Previous research has revealed the brain processes underlying this ability. However, brain activity during biological motion perception captures a multitude of processes. As a result, it is often unclear which processes reflect movement processing and which components reflect se...
Preprint
To explain the social difficulties in autism, a large amount of research has been conducted on the neural correlates of social perception. However, this research has mostly used basic social stimuli (e.g. eyes, faces, hands, single agent), not resembling the complexity of what we encounter in our daily social lives, and as such, the situations peop...
Preprint
Full-text available
Detecting biological motion is essential for adaptive social behavior. Previous research has revealed the brain processes underlying this ability. However, brain activity during biological motion perception captures a multitude of components. As a result, it is often unclear which components reflect movement processing and which components reflect...
Article
Previous event-related potential (ERP) research showed reduced self-referential processing in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). As different self-related stimuli were studied in isolation, it is unclear whether findings can be ascribed to a common underlying mechanism. Further, it is unknown whether altered self-referential processing is also evident...
Article
Full-text available
Previous neuroscience studies have provided important insights into the neural processing of third-party social interaction recognition. Unfortunately, however, the methods they used are limited by a high susceptibility to noise. EEG frequency tagging is a promising technique to overcome this limitation, as it is known for its high signal to noise...
Article
Recent theories of autism propose that a core deficit in autism would be a less context-sensitive weighting of prediction errors. There is also first support for this hypothesis on an early sensory level. However, an open question is whether this decreased context sensitivity is caused by faster updating of one???s model of the world (i.e., higher...
Article
Background: A growing body of empirical research shows that suicidal behaviors are prevalent in childhood. Yet, few studies have examined risk factors related to suicidal ideation (SI) among children aged 12 and younger. Aims: The current study addresses this gap. Method: A questionnaire was filled out by 1,350 Flemish primary caregivers (94.7% mot...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The ‘self-bias’ – i.e., the human proneness to preferentially process self-relevant stimuli – is thought to be important for both self-related and social processing. Previous research operationalized the self-bias using different paradigms, assessing the size of the self-bias within a single cognitive domain. Recent studies suggested a...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: According to the state regulation deficit account, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with difficulties in maintaining an optimal level of cognitive arousal. As the precise locus of this problem is yet unknown, the present study investigated this through behavioral and pupillometry indices. Method: Adults sc...
Article
Introduction: Numerous life, peer, and school-related factors have been found to be associated with non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) among adolescents; however, most studies have not explored the possible reciprocal nature of these associations. The aim of the current study was to examine bidirectional and longitudinal associations between NSSI and...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction The involvement of the vestibular system in the motor and higher (cognitive) performances of typically developing or vestibular-impaired children is currently unknown or has only scarcely been explored. Interestingly, arguments for an interaction between vestibular, motor and cognitive functions in children can also be supported by res...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: The ‘self-bias’ – i.e., the human proneness to preferentially process self-relevant stimuli – is thought to be important for both self-related and social processing. Previous research operationalized the self-bias using different paradigms, assessing the size of the self-bias within a single cognitive domain. Recent studies suggested a...
Article
Full-text available
Background Previous studies have reported a negative psychological and mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This impact is likely to be stronger for people with autism as they are at heightened risk of mental health problems and because the pandemic directly affects social functioning and everyday routines. We therefore examined COVID-19...
Article
Lay abstract: Recent theories propose that autism is characterized by an impairment in determining when to learn and when not. Here, we investigated this hypothesis by estimating learning rates (i.e. the speed with which one learns) in three different environments that differed in rule stability and uncertainty. We found that neurotypical particip...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Previous studies have reported a negative psychological and mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This impact is likely to be stronger for people with autism as they are at heightened risk of mental health problems and because the pandemic directly affects social functioning and everyday routines. We therefore examined COVID-19-...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Previous studies have reported a negative psychological and mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This impact is likely to be stronger for people with autism as they are at heightened risk of mental health problems and because the pandemic directly affects social functioning and everyday routines. We therefore examined COVID-19...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Recent theories of autism propose that a core deficit in autism would be a less context-sensitive weighting of prediction errors. There is also first support for this hypothesis on an early sensory level. However, an open question is whether this decreased context-sensitivity is caused by faster updating of one’s model of the world (i.e....
Article
Full-text available
Theory of Mind (ToM) or mentalizing refers to the ability to attribute mental states (such as desires, beliefs or intentions) to oneself or others. ToM has been argued to operate in an explicit and an implicit or a spontaneous way. In their influential paper, Kovács et al. (Science 330:1830–1834, 2010) introduced an adapted false belief task—a ball...
Article
The contribution of central factors to movement preparation (e.g., the contingent negative variation [CNV]) and the influence of fatigue on such factors are still unclear, even though executive cognitive functions are regarded as key elements in motor control. Therefore, this study examined CNV amplitude with electroencephalography in 22 healthy hu...
Article
Inleiding: Naast sociale en economische factoren wordt verminderde vruchtbaarheid genoemd als oorzaak van het dalende geboortecijfer in Vlaanderen. De tijd die nodig is om tot een gewenste, natuurlijke bevruchting te komen, de zogenaamde ‘tijd tot zwangerschap’ (kortweg TTZ), is een maat voor het schatten van de prevalentie van verminderde vruchtba...
Article
Non-specific chronic low back pain (CLBP) is a multifactorial disorder. Pain-related fear and altered movement preparation are considered to be key factors in the chronification process. Interactions between both have been hypothesized, but studies examining the influence of situational fear on movement preparation in low back pain (LBP) are wantin...
Article
Cognitive control has two distinct modes - proactive and reactive (Braver, T. S. (2012). The variable nature of cognitive control: a dual mechanisms framework. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 16(2), 105-112). ADHD has been associated with cognitive control impairments. However, studies have mainly focused on reactive control and not proactive control...
Article
Full-text available
A common idea about individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is that they have an above average preference for predictability and sameness. However, surprisingly little research has gone towards this core symptom, and some studies suggest the preference for predictability in ASD might be less general than commonly assumed. Here, we investiga...
Preprint
Full-text available
Recent predictive coding theories propose that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by an impairment in determining when to learn and when not. Here, we investigated this hypothesis by estimating learning rate in three different environments that differed in volatility and uncertainty. Specifically, using a dimensional approach, we corre...
Article
Full-text available
The own name is a salient stimulus, used by others to initiate social interaction. Typically developing infants orient towards the sound of their own name and exhibit enhanced event-related potentials (ERP) at 5 months. The lack of orientation to the own name is considered to be one of the earliest signs of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In this s...
Article
Full-text available
This review was performed to investigate the characteristics of vestibular dysfunctions in children with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs). The majority of the included studies reported central and/or peripheral vestibular aberrations in a subset of these children. These alterations may result in symptoms of distorted motor coordination or postur...
Preprint
There is a major debate in the theory of mind (ToM) field, concerning whether spontaneous and explicit ToM are based on the same or two distinct cognitive systems. While there is extensive research on the neural correlates of explicit ToM, revealing consistent activation of the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), fe...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is presumed to involve mental effort application difficulties. To test this assumption, we manipulated task difficulty and measured behavioral, as well as subjective and psychophysiological indices of effort. Methods: Fifteen adolescent ADHD boys and 16 controls performed two tasks. First,...
Article
Full-text available
ADHD is considered a disorder of self-regulation. Recent research has shown that awareness of bodily states, referred to as interoceptive awareness, crucially contributes to self-regulatory processes. Impaired self-regulation in ADHD has been explained in terms of arousal regulation deficits in ADHD (the state regulation deficit (SRD) account). The...
Article
Full-text available
Adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are known to have stronger preferences for smaller immediate rewards over larger delayed rewards in delay discounting tasks than their peers, which has been argued to reflect delay aversion. Here, participants performed a delay discounting task with gains and losses. In this latter co...
Article
De blootstelling van een foetus tijdens de zwangerschap, omdat de moeder zelf rookt of ongewild blootgesteld is aan tabaksrook in haar omgeving, wordt in de internationale literatuur in verband gebracht met een verhoogd risico op zwangerschapsverwikkelingen en met nadelige effecten op de perinatale gezondheid van kinderen. Uit een bevraging van 2.1...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Recent predictive coding accounts of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) suggest that a key deficit in ASD concerns the inflexibility in modulating local prediction errors as a function of global top-down expectations. As a direct test of this central hypothesis, we used electroencephalography to investigate whether local prediction error pr...
Article
Full-text available
The socio-communicative difficulties of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are hypothesized to be caused by a specific deficit in the ability to represent one’s own and others’ mental states, referred to as Theory of Mind or mentalizing. However, many individuals with ASD show successful performance on explicit measures of mentalizing,...
Article
Full-text available
Diminished responding to hearing one’s own name is one of the earliest and strongest predictors of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here, we studied, for the first time, the neural correlates of hearing one’s own name in ASD. Based on existing research, we hypothesized enhancement of late parietal positive activity specifically for the own name in n...
Article
Full-text available
Spontaneous mentalizing ability has been linked to symptoms severity in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here we investigated whether in neurotypicals, higher levels of ASD symptomatology could also be linked to lower levels of spontaneous mentalizing, by comparing neurotypicals scoring high with those scoring low on the short Autis...
Article
Autism spectrum disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is associated with problems in empathy. Recent research suggests that impaired control over self-other overlap based on motor representations in individuals with autism spectrum disorder might underlie these difficulties. In order to investigate the relationship of self-other distinctio...
Article
Introduction The state regulation model postulates that ADHD performance difficulties result from failures to regulate activation states in response to changing environmental conditions – producing poor performance under sub-optimal conditions. Behavioral and electrophysiological studies involving the manipulation of event rate (ER) lend support to...
Article
Tussen maart en juni 2009 ontvingen alle meisjes, geboren in 1996 en op het moment van het onderzoek woonachtig in 8 regio’s verspreid over Vlaanderen, in het kader van het Vlaamse cohortonderzoek JOnG! een semigestructureerde vragenlijst met onder meer vragen over de leeftijd van menarche, de kenmerken van hun menstruele cyclus en de eventuele imp...
Article
Full-text available
Studies have demonstrated inefficient use of antecedent-focused emotion regulation strategies in children with ADHD attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In the current study we tested for the first time if ADHD is also associated with difficulties in response-focused strategies by measuring the ability to override action tendencies indu...
Article
Full-text available
The role of imitation in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is controversial. Researchers have argued that deficient control of self- and other-related motor representations (self-other distinction) might explain imitation difficulties. In a recent EEG study, we showed that control of imitation relies on high-level as well as on low-level cognitive pro...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: We investigated cognitive reappraisal in children with ADHD by means of the late positive potential (LPP) and self-report ratings. We expected diminished LPP modulation following reappraisal and lower self-report scores in children with ADHD. Methods: Eighteen children with ADHD and 24 typically developing (TD) children (8-12years) pe...
Article
For more than 15 years, motor interference paradigms have been used to investigate the influence of action observation on action execution. Most research on so-called automatic imitation has focused on variables that play a modulating role or investigated potential confounding factors. Interestingly, furthermore, a number of functional magnetic res...
Article
Objective: The reduction of the amplitude of the late positive potential (LPP) following cognitive reappraisal has been used as a neural marker of emotion regulation. However, studies employing this neural marker in children are scarce and findings are not conclusive, with most studies showing a lack of LPP modulation after reappraisal in children...
Article
The current study examined the mechanisms of attention allocation in adult ADHD to investigate the frequently reported diminished target processing in ADHD as well as the less consistently observed increased distractibility by task-irrelevant distracting stimuli. To this end, while high-density EEG was recorded, 25 adults with ADHD and 23 healthy c...
Article
Full-text available
The concept of mentalizing has been widely studied, but almost exclusively through tasks with explicit instructions. Recent studies suggest that people also mentalize on a more implicit level. However, to our knowledge, no study to date has directly contrasted the effects of implicit and explicit mentalizing processes on an implicit dependent measu...
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Conference Paper
Mental effort plays an important role in theoretical models of ADHD; it is central to both motivational and cognitive-energetic accounts, but it has been underspecified and under-examined empirically. It could however, provide the missing link between task performance of difficult and challenging tasks requiring cognitive control, and the effects o...
Article
There is extensive discussion on whether spontaneous and explicit forms of ToM are based on the same cognitive/neural mechanisms or rather reflect qualitatively different processes. For the first time, we analyzed the BOLD signal for false belief processing by directly comparing spontaneous and explicit task versions. In both versions, participants...
Article
Full-text available
Next to social problems, individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often report severe sensory difficulties. Altered processing of touch is however a stronger mediator of social symptoms' severity than altered processing of for instance vision or audition. Why is this the case? We reasoned that sensory difficulties may be linked to social pro...
Article
Emotional dysregulation in daily life is very common in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is however not clear whether this reflects a specific deficit or that it may be the result of generic executive function (EF) deficits. The current study addresses this question by means of an emotional working memory (WM) task...
Article
Error awareness has been argued to depend on sensory feedback and interoceptive awareness (IA) (Ullsperger et al., 2010). We recorded EEG while participants performed a speeded Go/No-Go task in which they signaled error commission. Visibility of the effector was manipulated, while IA was measured with a heartbeat perception task. The late Pe was la...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: State of the art brain-computer interface (BCI) research focuses on improving individual components such as the application or the decoder that converts the user's brain activity to control signals. In this study, we investigate the interaction between these components in the P300 speller, a BCI for communication. We introduce a synergi...
Article
Full-text available
Prior studies demonstrate altered organisation of functional brain networks in attentiondeficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the structural underpinnings of these functional disturbances are poorly understood. In the current study, we applied a graphtheoretic approach to whole-brain diffusion magnetic resonance imaging data to investigat...
Article
Background: Individuals with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) display excess levels of default mode network (DMN) activity during goal-directed tasks, which are associated with attentional disturbances and performance decrements. One hypothesis is that this is due to attenuated down-regulation of this network during rest-to-task swi...
Article
Full-text available
Theory of mind (ToM) research has shown that adults with high functioning autism (HFA) demonstrate typical performance on tasks that require explicit belief reasoning, despite clear social difficulties in everyday life situations. In the current study, we used implicit belief manipulations that are task-irrelevant and therefore less susceptible to...
Article
Full-text available
For statistical analysis of event related potentials (ERPs), there are convincing arguments against averaging across stimuli or subjects. Multivariate filters can be used to isolate an ERP component of interest without the averaging procedure. However, we would like to have certainty that the output of the filter accurately represents the component...
Article
Deficits in task-related attentional engagement in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been hypothesised to be due to altered interrelationships between attention, default mode and salience networks. We examined the intrinsic connectivity during rest within and between these networks. Six-minute resting-state scans were obtained. U...
Article
Full-text available
The present study is the first to examine predictors and consequences of nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) in adolescence using parent-reported data in a longitudinal design. Across three time points, we examined the reciprocal effects of parent-reported parenting behaviors as they are related to adolescents' NSSI. The present study is a three-wave pr...
Article
Full-text available
Action observation leads to a representation of both the motor aspect of an observed action (motor simulation) and its somatosensory consequences (action-based somatosensory simulation) in the observer's brain. In the current EEG-study, we investigated the neuronal interplay of action-based somatosensory simulation and felt touch. We presented inde...
Article
Objective: This study aimed to provide more insight into the functional significance of electroencephalographic (EEG) deviances in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) by evaluating quantitative EEG during performance on a task with a low activation level and a task tapping top-down executive control. Method: Behavioral performance an...
Conference Paper
In the current EEG-study, we investigated whether individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) effectively use their own sense of touch to understand tactile experiences that accompany other people’s actions (action-based touch). We tested the action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm (Deschrijver, Wiersema, & Brass, submitted) in a group o...