Background: The ability to regulate the response to sensory stimuli has been associated with successful behavioral patterns necessary for daily activities. However, it is not known whether a child's ethnicity and environment can influence autonomic regulatory mechanisms. Objective: This study aims to explore the role of ethnicity and environment in the regulation of responses to sensory stimuli in children. Methods: In this study, we intend to recruit 128 children from different ethnic groups or environment contexts as follows: (1) 32 typically developing Chinese children living in Hong Kong; (2) 32 typically developing Filipino children living in Hong Kong; (3) 32 typically developing Filipino children who are living in urban areas; and (4) 32 typically developing Filipino children who are living in rural areas in Philippines. Autonomic activity (heart rate variability [HRV] and electrodermal activity [EDA]) will be measured and recorded using Polar H2 heart rate monitor and eSense GSR skin response sensor. Autonomic activity (HRV-low frequency, HRV-high frequency, and EDA) at different conditions between pairwise groupings will be tested using multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA). All significant levels will be set at P ≤.05. Results: We present the research protocol of this study, as well as a short discussion of the preliminary findings from our pilot data, with consequent power and sample size analysis that informs the appropriate sample needed to test our hypothesis. Conclusions: This study will increase the understanding on the role of individual differences related to a child's ethnicity and environment in the regulation of response to sensory stimuli. The findings of this research may further shed light on the evaluation and treatment planning for children across and within cultures.
- Autonomic nervous system
- Parasympathetic nervous system
- Sympathetic nervous system
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Informatics