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Sample records for share discriminative stimulus

  1. Discrimination learning with variable stimulus 'salience'

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    Treviño Mario

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In nature, sensory stimuli are organized in heterogeneous combinations. Salient items from these combinations 'stand-out' from their surroundings and determine what and how we learn. Yet, the relationship between varying stimulus salience and discrimination learning remains unclear. Presentation of the hypothesis A rigorous formulation of the problem of discrimination learning should account for varying salience effects. We hypothesize that structural variations in the environment where the conditioned stimulus (CS is embedded will be a significant determinant of learning rate and retention level. Testing the hypothesis Using numerical simulations, we show how a modified version of the Rescorla-Wagner model, an influential theory of associative learning, predicts relevant interactions between varying salience and discrimination learning. Implications of the hypothesis If supported by empirical data, our model will help to interpret critical experiments addressing the relations between attention, discrimination and learning.

  2. Pigeons learn stimulus identity and stimulus relations when both serve as redundant, relevant cues during same-different discrimination training.

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    Gibson, Brett M; Wasserman, Edward A

    2003-01-01

    The authors taught pigeons to discriminate displays of 16 identical items from displays of 16 nonidentical items. Unlike most same-different discrimination studies--where only stimulus relations could serve a discriminative function--both the identity of the items and the relations among the items were discriminative features of the displays. The pigeons learned about both stimulus identity and stimulus relations when these 2 sources of information served as redundant, relevant cues. In tests of associative competition, identity cues exerted greater stimulus control than relational cues. These results suggest that the pigeon can respond to both specific stimuli and general relations in the environment.

  3. Reinforcing and discriminative stimulus properties of music in goldfish.

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    Shinozuka, Kazutaka; Ono, Haruka; Watanabe, Shigeru

    2013-10-01

    This paper investigated whether music has reinforcing and discriminative stimulus properties in goldfish. Experiment 1 examined the discriminative stimulus properties of music. The subjects were successfully trained to discriminate between two pieces of music--Toccata and Fugue in D minor (BWV 565) by J. S. Bach and The Rite of Spring by I. Stravinsky. Experiment 2 examined the reinforcing properties of sounds, including BWV 565 and The Rite of Spring. We developed an apparatus for measuring spontaneous sound preference in goldfish. Music or noise stimuli were presented depending on the subject's position in the aquarium, and the time spent in each area was measured. The results indicated that the goldfish did not show consistent preferences for music, although they showed significant avoidance of noise stimuli. These results suggest that music has discriminative but not reinforcing stimulus properties in goldfish. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Characterization of the discriminative stimulus produced by the dopamine antagonist tiapride.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, C; Sanger, D J; Perrault, G

    1997-11-01

    The ability of tiapride, a selective D2/D3 dopamine receptor antagonist, to exert discriminative stimulus control of responding was investigated by training rats to discriminate this drug (30 mg/kg) from saline in a two-lever, food-reinforcement procedure. Acquisition of tiapride discrimination required a relatively lengthy training period (mean of 76 sessions) but stable performance was maintained throughout the 18- month study. The dose of tiapride eliciting 50% tiapride-lever choice (ED50) was 2.2 mg/kg. After determination of the dose-effect curve with tiapride, substitution tests with several dopamine antagonists and other reference compounds were performed. All dopamine antagonists, including amisulpride (ED50 4 mg/kg), sulpiride (18 mg/kg), sultopride (1.5 mg/kg), clebopride (0.13 mg/kg), raclopride (0.16 mg/kg), metoclopramide (1.4 mg/kg), remoxipride (4.8 mg/kg), pimozide (2.7 mg/kg), thioridazine (3.4 mg/kg), olanzapine (0.97 mg/kg), chlorpromazine (1.9 mg/kg), risperidone (0.22 mg/kg) and haloperidol (0.14 mg/kg), except clozapine (>10 mg/kg), produced dose-dependent substitution for tiapride. Tiapride-like stimulus effects were observed at doses that decreased response rates. However, ED50 values for substitution by tiapride, amisulpride, sulpiride, sultopride, pimozide, clebopride and thioridazine were lower than ED50 values for decreasing responding. Additional studies were conducted to evaluate the ability of direct and indirect dopamine agonists to attenuate the tiapride discriminative stimulus. Pretreatment with d-amphetamine and nomifensine antagonized the discriminative stimulus effects of tiapride. Quinpirole, 7-OH-DPAT, bromocriptine and apomorphine partially blocked the stimulus effects of tiapride whereas SKF 38393 did not affect the discrimination. These results from substitution and antagonism tests indicated that the discriminative effects of tiapride are mediated by activity at D2/D3 dopamine receptors.

  5. Discriminative stimulus effects of inhaled 1,1,1-trichloroethane in mice: comparison to other hydrocarbon vapors and volatile anesthetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelton, Keith L

    2009-04-01

    Because the toxicity of many inhalants precludes evaluation in humans, drug discrimination, an animal model of subjective effects, can be used to gain insights on their poorly understood abuse-related effects. The purpose of the present study was to train a prototypic inhalant that has known abuse liability, 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCE), as a discriminative stimulus in mice, and compare it to other classes of inhalants. Eight B6SJLF1/J mice were trained to discriminate 10 min of exposure to 12,000 ppm inhaled TCE vapor from air and seven mice were trained to discriminate 4,000 ppm TCE from air. Tests were then conducted to characterize the discriminative stimulus of TCE and to compare it to representative aromatic and chlorinated hydrocarbon vapors, volatile halogenated anesthetics as well as an odorant compound. Only the 12,000 ppm TCE versus the air discrimination group exhibited sufficient discrimination accuracy for substitution testing. TCE vapor concentration- and exposure time-dependently substituted for the 12,000 ppm TCE vapor training stimulus. Full substitution was produced by trichloroethylene, toluene, enflurane, and sevoflurane. Varying degrees of partial substitution were produced by the other volatile test compounds. The odorant, 2-butanol, did not produce any substitution for TCE. The discriminative stimulus effects of TCE are shared fully or partially by chlorinated and aromatic hydrocarbons as well as by halogenated volatile anesthetics. However, these compounds can be differentiated from TCE both quantitatively and qualitatively. It appears that the degree of similarity is not solely a function of chemical classification but may also be dependent upon the neurochemical effects of the individual compounds.

  6. Discriminative stimulus effects of alpidem, a new imidazopyridine anxiolytic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanger, D J; Zivkovic, B

    1994-01-01

    Alpidem in an imidazopyridine derivative which binds selectively to the omega 1 (BZ1) receptor subtype. It is active in some, but not all, behavioural tests sensitive to benzodiazepine anxiolytics and has clinical anti-anxiety effects. However, in a previous study, it was shown that alpidem did not substitute for chlordiazepoxide in rats trained to discriminate this benzodiazepine. The present experiments were carried out to investigate the discriminative stimulus properties of alpidem in greater detail. In the first experiment rats learned to discriminate a dose of 10 mg/kg alpidem from saline. Acquisition of the discrimination was long and performance unstable. Chlordiazepoxide, clorazepate and zolpidem substituted only partially for alpidem but the effects of the training dose of alpidem were blocked by 10 mg/kg flumazenil. The second experiment established stimulus control more rapidly to a dose of 30 mg/kg alpidem. Alpidem induced dose-related stimulus control, and dose-related and complete substitution for alpidem was produced by zolpidem, abecarnil, CL 218,872, triazolam and suriclone. Partial substitution occurred with chlordiazepoxide, clorazepate and pentobarbital. In most cases, high levels of substitution were produced only by doses which greatly reduced response rates even though the training dose of alpidem produced only modest decreases in rates. Ethanol, buspirone and bretazenil produced very little substitution for alpidem and both flumazenil and bretazenil antagonised the effects of alpidem. In two further experiments alpidem was found to substitute for the stimulus produced by zolpidem (2 mg/kg) but not for that produced by ethanol (1.5 g/kg).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  7. The third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold: focusing on the temporal processing of sensory input within primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leodori, Giorgio; Formica, Alessandra; Zhu, Xiaoying; Conte, Antonella; Belvisi, Daniele; Cruccu, Giorgio; Hallett, Mark; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2017-10-01

    The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) has been used in recent years to investigate time processing of sensory information, but little is known about the physiological correlates of somatosensory temporal discrimination. The objective of this study was to investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between two stimuli varies according to the number of stimuli in the task. We used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT), defined as the shortest time interval at which an individual distinguishes a third stimulus following a pair of stimuli delivered at the STDT. The STDT and ThirdDT were assessed in 31 healthy subjects. In a subgroup of 10 subjects, we evaluated the effects of the stimuli intensity on the ThirdDT. In a subgroup of 16 subjects, we evaluated the effects of S1 continuous theta-burst stimulation (S1-cTBS) on the STDT and ThirdDT. Results show that ThirdDT is shorter than STDT. We found a positive correlation between STDT and ThirdDT values. As long as the stimulus intensity was within the perceivable and painless range, it did not affect ThirdDT values. S1-cTBS significantly affected both STDT and ThirdDT, although the latter was affected to a greater extent and for a longer period of time. We conclude that the interval needed to discriminate between time-separated tactile stimuli is related to the number of stimuli used in the task. STDT and ThirdDT are encoded in S1, probably by a shared tactile temporal encoding mechanism whose performance rapidly changes during the perception process. ThirdDT is a new method to measure somatosensory temporal discrimination. NEW & NOTEWORTHY To investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between stimuli varies according to changes in the stimulation pattern, we used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT). We found that the somatosensory temporal discrimination acuity varies according to the number of stimuli in the

  8. Nicotine as a discriminative stimulus for ethanol use.

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    Ginsburg, Brett C; Levy, Simon A; Lamb, R J

    2018-01-01

    Abused drugs reinforce behavior; i.e., they increase the probability of the behavior preceding their administration. Abused drugs can also act as discriminative stimuli; i.e., they can set the occasion for responding reinforced by another event. Thus, one abused drug could come to set the occasion for the use of another and this functional relationship may play a role in polysubstance abuse, where common patterns of use could result in this relationship. Here we establish nicotine (0.4mg/kg, ip 5-min pre-session) as a discriminative stimulus for behavior reinforced by ethanol (0.1ml 8% w/v po, versus food) and determine the ability of nicotine (0.02-0.4mg/kg), varenicline (0.1-3.0mg/kg), and ethanol (250 and 500mg/kg) to control responding for ethanol. We compare these results to those from rats where nicotine signaled food was available (and ethanol was not). Nicotine came to function as a discriminative stimulus. Nicotine and varenicline produced dose-dependent increases in responding on the nicotine-appropriate lever while ethanol produced responding on the vehicle-appropriate lever. Whether this responding occurred on the lever that produced ethanol or food access depended on the training condition. These results demonstrate that a drug can come to set the occasion for use of another and suggest that this behavioral mechanism could play an important role in the maintenance of and recovery from polysubstance abuse, depending on the pattern of use. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Eating high-fat chow increases the sensitivity of rats to quinpirole-induced discriminative stimulus effects and yawning.

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    Baladi, Michelle G; France, Charles P

    2010-10-01

    Discriminative stimulus effects of direct acting dopamine receptor agonists (e.g. quinpirole) appear to be mediated by D3 receptors in free-feeding rats. Free access to high-fat chow increases sensitivity to quinpirole-induced yawning, and this study examined whether eating high-fat chow increases sensitivity to the discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole. Five rats discriminated between 0.032 mg/kg quinpirole and vehicle while responding under a continuous reinforcement schedule of stimulus shock termination. When rats had free access to high-fat chow (discrimination training was suspended), the quinpirole discrimination dose-response curve shifted leftward, possibly indicating enhanced sensitivity at D3 receptors. In the same rats, both the ascending (mediated by D3 receptors) and descending (mediated by D2 receptors) limbs of the dose-response curve for quinpirole-induced yawning shifted leftward. When rats had free access to a standard chow (discrimination training was suspended), the quinpirole discrimination and yawning dose-response curves did not change. Together with published data showing that the discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole in free-feeding rats are mediated by D3 receptors and the insensitivity of this effect of quinpirole to food restriction (shown to increase sensitivity to D2 but not D3-mediated effects), these results suggest that the leftward shift of the discrimination dose-response curve when rats eat high-fat chow is likely because of enhanced sensitivity at D3 receptors. Thus, eating high-fat food enhances drug effects in a manner that might impact clinical effects of drugs or vulnerability to drug abuse.

  10. Eating high fat chow increases the sensitivity of rats to quinpirole-induced discriminative stimulus effects and yawning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baladi, Michelle G; France, Charles P

    2010-01-01

    Discriminative stimulus effects of directly-acting dopamine receptor agonists (e.g. quinpirole) appear to be mediated by D3 receptors in free-feeding rats. Free access to high fat chow increases sensitivity to quinpirole-induced yawning and the current study examined whether eating high fat chow increases sensitivity to the discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole. Five rats discriminated between 0.032 mg/kg quinpirole and vehicle while responding under a continuous reinforcement schedule of stimulus shock termination. When rats had free access to high fat chow (discrimination training was suspended), the quinpirole discrimination dose-response curve shifted leftward, possibly indicating enhanced sensitivity at D3 receptors. In the same rats, both the ascending (mediated by D3 receptors) and descending (mediated by D2 receptors) limbs of the dose- response curve for quinpirole-induced yawning shifted leftward. When rats had free access to a standard chow (discrimination training was suspended), the quinpirole discrimination and yawning dose-response curves did not change. Together with published data showing that the discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole in free- feeding rats are mediated by D3 receptors and the insensitivity of this effect of quinpirole to food restriction (shown to increase sensitivity to D2 but not D3-mediated effects), these results suggest that the leftward shift of the discrimination dose-response curve when rats eat high fat chow is likely due to enhanced sensitivity at D3 receptors. Thus, eating high fat food enhances drug effects in a manner that might impact clinical effects of drugs or vulnerability to drug abuse. PMID:20729718

  11. Agmatine attenuates the discriminative stimulus and hyperthermic effects of methamphetamine in male rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorn, David A; Li, Jiuzhou; Qiu, Yanyan; Li, Jun-Xu

    2016-09-01

    Methamphetamine abuse remains an alarming public heath challenge, with no approved pharmacotherapies available. Agmatine is a naturally occurring cationic polyamine that has previously been shown to attenuate the rewarding and psychomotor-sensitizing effects of methamphetamine. This study examined the effects of agmatine on the discriminative stimulus and hyperthermic effects of methamphetamine. Adult male rats were trained to discriminate 0.32 mg/kg methamphetamine from saline. Methamphetamine dose dependently increased drug-associated lever responding. The nonselective dopamine receptor antagonist haloperidol (0.1 mg/kg) significantly attenuated the discriminative stimulus effects of methamphetamine (5.9-fold rightward shift). Agmatine (10-100 mg/kg) did not substitute for methamphetamine, but significantly attenuated the stimulus effects of methamphetamine, leading to a maximum of a 3.5-fold rightward shift. Acute 10 mg/kg methamphetamine increased the rectal temperature by a maximum of 1.96±0.17°C. Agmatine (10-32 mg/kg) pretreatment significantly attenuated the hyperthermic effect of methamphetamine. Agmatine (10 mg/kg) also significantly reversed methamphetamine-induced temperature increase. Together, these results support further exploration of the value that agmatine may have for the treatment of methamphetamine abuse and overdose.

  12. Pavlovian-Instrumental Transfer of the Discriminative Stimulus Effects of Nicotine and Ethanol in Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troisi, Joseph R., II

    2006-01-01

    To date, only 1 study has evaluated the impact of a Pavlovian drug conditional stimulus (CS) on operant responding. A within-subject operant 1-lever go/no-go (across sessions) design was used to evaluate the impact of Pavlovian contingencies on the discriminative stimulus effects of nicotine (0.4 mg/kg) and ethanol (800 mg/kg) in male Sprague…

  13. Controlling Relations in Baseline Conditional Discriminations as Determinants of Stimulus Equivalence

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Rose, Julio C.; Hidalgo, Matheus; Vasconcellos, Mariliz

    2013-01-01

    Variation in baseline controlling relations is suggested as one of the factors determining variability in stimulus equivalence outcomes. This study used single- comparison trials attempting to control such controlling relations. Four children learned AB, BC, and CD conditional discriminations, with 2 samples and 2 comparison stimuli. In Condition…

  14. Pharmacological Characterization of the Discriminative Stimulus of Inhaled 1,1,1-Trichloroethane

    OpenAIRE

    Shelton, Keith L.

    2010-01-01

    The present study examined the involvement of the GABAA, N-methy-d-aspartate (NMDA), nicotinic acetylcholine, and μ-opioid receptor systems in the transduction of the discriminative stimulus effects of the abused inhalant 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCE). Sixteen B6SJLF1/J mice were trained to discriminate 10 min of exposure to 12,000-ppm inhaled TCE vapor from air. Substitution and antagonism tests and TCE blood concentration analysis were subsequently conducted. TCE blood concentrations decrease...

  15. Solidarity through shared disadvantage: Highlighting shared experiences of discrimination improves relations between stigmatized groups.

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    Cortland, Clarissa I; Craig, Maureen A; Shapiro, Jenessa R; Richeson, Jennifer A; Neel, Rebecca; Goldstein, Noah J

    2017-10-01

    Intergroup relations research has largely focused on relations between members of dominant groups and members of disadvantaged groups. The small body of work examining intraminority intergroup relations, or relations between members of different disadvantaged groups, reveals that salient experiences of ingroup discrimination promote positive relations between groups that share a dimension of identity (e.g., 2 different racial minority groups) and negative relations between groups that do not share a dimension of identity (e.g., a racial minority group and a sexual minority group). In the present work, we propose that shared experiences of discrimination between groups that do not share an identity dimension can be used as a lever to facilitate positive intraminority intergroup relations. Five experiments examining relations among 4 different disadvantaged groups supported this hypothesis. Both blatant (Experiments 1 and 3) and subtle (Experiments 2, 3, and 4) connections to shared experiences of discrimination, or inducing a similarity-seeking mindset in the context of discrimination faced by one's ingroup (Experiment 5), increased support for policies benefiting the outgroup (Experiments 1, 2, and 4) and reduced intergroup bias (Experiments 3, 4, and 5). Taken together, these experiments provide converging evidence that highlighting shared experiences of discrimination can improve intergroup outcomes between stigmatized groups across dimensions of social identity. Implications of these findings for intraminority intergroup relations are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  16. Discriminative stimulus properties of beta-phenylethylamine, deuterated beta-phenylethylamine, phenylethanolamine and some metabolites of phenylethylamine in rodents

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    Reid, D.; Goudie, A.J.

    1986-06-01

    The discriminative stimulus (cue) properties of phenylethylamine (PEA) were analysed in rodents in a conventional two lever FR10 operant drug discrimination task. Rats trained to discriminate phenylethylamine at 30 mg/kg showed complete dose-related generalization to PEA and to two potential PEA metabolites: phenylethanolamine (PEOH) and N-Methyl PEA (NMPEA). Only partial (50%) generalization was seen with N-Methylphenylethanolamine (NMPEOH), another potential PEA metabolite. The specificity of PEA's action as a discriminative stimulus was demonstrated by the finding that fenfluramine, a substituted phenylethylamine, failed to generalize to PEA even at high doses with marked behavioural effects which are known to have discriminative stimulus properties themselves. These data suggest that NMPEA and PEOH may be functionally important active metabolites of PEA, particularly if the major pathway of PEA metabolism to phenylacetic acid under the influence of MAO Type B is for any reason impaired. A long acting deuterium substituted form of PEA (alpha, alpha, d2 PEA), which is resistant to metabolism by MAO, produced complete dose-related generalization to the PEA cue but was more potent than PEA, due presumably to its resistance to metabolism by MAO. Deuterated PEA may therefore be a useful agent to use in future studies of the PEA cue, because the discriminability of PEA itself appears to be low due to its very rapid metabolism in vivo.

  17. Isolating spectral cues in amplitude and quasi-frequency modulation discrimination by reducing stimulus duration.

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    Borucki, Ewa; Berg, Bruce G

    2017-05-01

    This study investigated the psychophysical effects of distortion products in a listening task traditionally used to estimate the bandwidth of phase sensitivity. For a 2000 Hz carrier, estimates of modulation depth necessary to discriminate amplitude modulated (AM) tones and quasi-frequency modulated (QFM) were measured in a two interval forced choice task as a function modulation frequency. Temporal modulation transfer functions were often non-monotonic at modulation frequencies above 300 Hz. This was likely to be due to a spectral cue arising from the interaction of auditory distortion products and the lower sideband of the stimulus complex. When the stimulus duration was decreased from 200 ms to 20 ms, thresholds for low-frequency modulators rose to near-chance levels, whereas thresholds in the region of non-monotonicities were less affected. The decrease in stimulus duration appears to hinder the listener's ability to use temporal cues in order to discriminate between AM and QFM, whereas spectral information derived from distortion product cues appears more resilient. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  18. Locomotor activity and discriminative stimulus effects of a novel series of synthetic cathinone analogs in mice and rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatch, Michael B; Dolan, Sean B; Forster, Michael J

    2017-04-01

    Recent years have seen an increase in the recreational use of novel, synthetic psychoactive substances. There are little or no data on the abuse liability of many of the newer compounds. The current study investigated the discriminative stimulus and locomotor effects of a series of synthetic analogs of cathinone: α-pyrrolidinopropiophenone (α-PPP), α-pyrrolidinohexiophenone (α-PHP), α-pyrrolidinopentiothiophenone (α-PVT), 3,4-methylenedioxybutiophenone (MDPBP), and ethylone. Locomotor activity was assessed in an open-field assay using Swiss-Webster mice. Discriminative stimulus effects were assessed in Sprague-Dawley rats trained to discriminate either cocaine or methamphetamine from vehicle. Each of the compounds produced an inverted-U dose-effect on locomotor activity. Maximal effects were similar among the test compounds, but potencies varied with relative potencies of MDPBP > α-PPP = α-PHP > ethylone > α-PVT. Each of the test compounds substituted fully for the discriminative stimulus effects of methamphetamine. α-PPP, α-PHP, and ethylone fully substituted for cocaine. α-PVT produced a maximum of 50% cocaine-appropriate responding, and MDPBP produced an inverted-U-shaped dose-effect curve with maximum effects of 67%. These data provide initial evidence that these structurally similar, emerging novel psychoactive substances demonstrate potential for abuse and may be utilized for their stimulant-like effects, given their ability to stimulate locomotor activity and their substitution for the discriminative stimulus effects of the classical psychostimulants cocaine and/or methamphetamine.

  19. Auditory stimulus discrimination recorded in dogs, as indicated by mismatch negativity (MMN).

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    Howell, Tiffani J; Conduit, Russell; Toukhsati, Samia; Bennett, Pauleen

    2012-01-01

    Dog cognition research tends to rely on behavioural response, which can be confounded by obedience or motivation, as the primary means of indexing dog cognitive abilities. A physiological method of measuring dog cognitive processing would be instructive and could complement behavioural response. Electroencephalogram (EEG) has been used in humans to study stimulus processing, which results in waveforms called event-related potentials (ERPs). One ERP component, mismatch negativity (MMN), is a negative deflection approximately 160-200 ms after stimulus onset, which may be related to change detection from echoic sensory memory. We adapted a minimally invasive technique to record MMN in dogs. Dogs were exposed to an auditory oddball paradigm in which deviant tones (10% probability) were pseudo-randomly interspersed throughout an 8 min sequence of standard tones (90% probability). A significant difference in MMN ERP amplitude was observed after the deviant tone in comparison to the standard tone, t5 = -2.98, p = 0.03. This difference, attributed to discrimination of an unexpected stimulus in a series of expected stimuli, was not observed when both tones occurred 50% of the time, t1 = -0.82, p > 0.05. Dogs showed no evidence of pain or distress at any point. We believe this is the first illustration of MMN in a group of dogs and anticipate that this technique may provide valuable insights in cognitive tasks such as object discrimination. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Complex discriminative stimulus properties of (+)lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in C57Bl/6J mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benneyworth, Michael A; Smith, Randy L; Barrett, Robert J; Sanders-Bush, Elaine

    2005-06-01

    The drug discrimination procedure is the most frequently used in vivo model of hallucinogen activity. Historically, most drug discrimination studies have been conducted in the rat. With the development of genetically modified mice, a powerful new tool has become available for investigating the mechanisms of drug-induced behavior. The current paper is part of an ongoing effort to determine the utility of the drug discrimination technique for evaluating hallucinogenic drugs in mice. To establish the training procedures and characterize the stimulus properties of (+)lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in mice. Using a two-lever drug discrimination procedure, C57Bl/6J mice were trained to discriminate 0.45 mg/kg LSD vs saline on a VI30 sec schedule of reinforcement, with vanilla-flavored Ensure serving as the reinforcer. As in rats, acquisition was orderly, but the training dose was nearly five-fold higher for mice than rats. LSD lever selection was dose-dependent. Time-course studies revealed a rapid loss of the LSD stimulus effects. The 5-HT(2A/2C) receptor agonist, 2,5-dimethoxy-4-bromoamphetamine [(-)DOB] (1.0 mg/kg), substituted fully for LSD and the 5-HT(1A) receptor agonist, 8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)-tetralin (8-OH-DPAT) (1.6 mg/kg), substituted partially for LSD. Pretreatment with the 5-HT(2A) receptor-selective antagonist, MDL 100907, or the 5-HT(1A)-selective antagonist WAY 100635, showed that each antagonist only partially blocked LSD discrimination. Substitution of 1.0 mg/kg (-)DOB for LSD was fully blocked by pretreatment with MDL 100907 but unaltered by WAY 100635 pretreatment. These data suggest that in mice the stimulus effects of LSD have both a 5-HT(2A) receptor and a 5-HT(1A) receptor component.

  1. Phenotypic assessment of THC discriminative stimulus properties in fatty acid amide hydrolase knockout and wildtype mice

    OpenAIRE

    Walentiny, D. Matthew; Vann, Robert E.; Wiley, Jenny L.

    2015-01-01

    A number of studies have examined the ability of the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide to elicit Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-like subjective effects, as modeled through the THC discrimination paradigm. In the present study, we compared transgenic mice lacking fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the enzyme primarily responsible for anandamide catabolism, to wildtype counterparts in a THC discrimination procedure. THC (5.6 mg/kg) served as a discriminative stimulus in both genotypes, with sim...

  2. Attenuation of cocaine's reinforcing and discriminative stimulus effects via muscarinic M1 acetylcholine receptor stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Morgane; Conn, P Jeffrey; Lindsley, Craig

    2010-01-01

    Muscarinic cholinergic receptors modulate dopaminergic function in brain pathways thought to mediate cocaine's abuse-related effects. Here, we sought to confirm and extend in the mouse species findings that nonselective muscarinic receptor antagonists can enhance cocaine's discriminative stimulus...... for cocaine addiction....

  3. Inseparability of Go and Stop in Inhibitory Control: Go Stimulus Discriminability Affects Stopping Behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Ning; Yu, Angela J

    2016-01-01

    Inhibitory control, the ability to stop or modify preplanned actions under changing task conditions, is an important component of cognitive functions. Two lines of models of inhibitory control have previously been proposed for human response in the classical stop-signal task, in which subjects must inhibit a default go response upon presentation of an infrequent stop signal: (1) the race model, which posits two independent go and stop processes that race to determine the behavioral outcome, go or stop; and (2) an optimal decision-making model, which posits that observers decides whether and when to go based on continually (Bayesian) updated information about both the go and stop stimuli. In this work, we probe the relationship between go and stop processing by explicitly manipulating the discrimination difficulty of the go stimulus. While the race model assumes the go and stop processes are independent, and therefore go stimulus discriminability should not affect the stop stimulus processing, we simulate the optimal model to show that it predicts harder go discrimination should result in longer go reaction time (RT), lower stop error rate, as well as faster stop-signal RT. We then present novel behavioral data that validate these model predictions. The results thus favor a fundamentally inseparable account of go and stop processing, in a manner consistent with the optimal model, and contradicting the independence assumption of the race model. More broadly, our findings contribute to the growing evidence that the computations underlying inhibitory control are systematically modulated by cognitive influences in a Bayes-optimal manner, thus opening new avenues for interpreting neural responses underlying inhibitory control.

  4. Inseparability of Go and Stop in Inhibitory Control: Go Stimulus Discriminability Affects Stopping Behavior

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    Ning eMa

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Inhibitory control, the ability to stop or modify preplanned actions under changing task conditions, is an important component of cognitive functions. Two lines of models of inhibitory control have previously been proposed for human response in the classical stop-signal task, in which subjects must inhibit a default go response upon presentation of an infrequent stop signal: (1 the race model, which posits two independent go and stop processes that race to determine the behavioral outcome, go or stop; and (2 an optimal decision-making model, which posits that observers decides whether and when to go based on continually (Bayesian updated information about both the go and stop stimuli. In this work, we probe the relationship between go and stop processing by explicitly manipulating the discrimination difficulty of the go stimulus. While the race model assumes the go and stop processes are independent, and therefore go stimulus discriminability should not affect the stop stimulus processing, we simulate the optimal model to show that it predicts harder go discrimination results in a longer go reaction time (RT, a lower stop error rate, as well as a faster stop-signal RT. We then present novel behavioral data that validate these model predictions. The results thus favor a fundamentally inseparable account of go and stop processing, in a manner consistent with the optimal model, and contradicting the independence assumption of the race model. More broadly, our findings contribute to the growing evidence that the computations underlying inhibitory control are systematically modulated by cognitive influences in a Bayes-optimal manner, thus opening new avenues for interpreting neural responses underlying inhibitory control.

  5. 5-Hydroxytryptamine (serotonin)2A receptors in rat anterior cingulate cortex mediate the discriminative stimulus properties of d-lysergic acid diethylamide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gresch, Paul J; Barrett, Robert J; Sanders-Bush, Elaine; Smith, Randy L

    2007-02-01

    d-Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), an indoleamine hallucinogen, produces profound alterations in mood, thought, and perception in humans. The brain site(s) that mediates the effects of LSD is currently unknown. In this study, we combine the drug discrimination paradigm with intracerebral microinjections to investigate the anatomical localization of the discriminative stimulus of LSD in rats. Based on our previous findings, we targeted the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) to test its involvement in mediating the discriminative stimulus properties of LSD. Rats were trained to discriminate systemically administered LSD (0.085 mg/kg s.c.) from saline. Following acquisition of the discrimination, bilateral cannulae were implanted into the ACC (AP, +1.2 mm; ML, +/-1.0 mm; DV, -2.0 mm relative to bregma). Rats were tested for their ability to discriminate varying doses of locally infused LSD (0.1875, 0.375, and 0.75 microg/side) or artificial cerebrospinal fluid (n = 3-7). LSD locally infused into ACC dose-dependently substituted for systemically administered LSD, with 0.75 microg/side LSD substituting completely (89% correct). Systemic administration of the selective 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin) (5-HT)(2A) receptor antagonist R-(+)-alpha-(2,3-dimethoxyphenyl)-1-[2-(4-fluorophenylethyl)]-4-piperidine-methanol (M100907; 0.4 mg/kg) blocked the discriminative cue of LSD (0.375 microg/side) infused into ACC (from 68 to 16% drug lever responding). Furthermore, M100907 (0.5 microg/microl/side) locally infused into ACC completely blocked the stimulus effects of systemic LSD (0.04 mg/kg; from 80 to 12% on the LSD lever). Taken together, these data indicate that 5-HT(2A) receptors in the ACC are a primary target mediating the discriminative stimulus properties of LSD.

  6. Caffeine induces differential cross tolerance to the amphetamine-like discriminative stimulus effects of dopaminergic agonists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Raka; Holtzman, Stephen G

    2005-05-15

    The purpose of this study was to determine if caffeine induces cross tolerance to the amphetamine-like discriminative stimulus effects of dopaminergic drugs that act through distinct mechanisms (e.g., release, uptake inhibition, direct activation of dopamine D(1)- or D(2)-family receptors). Rats were trained to discriminate 1.0 mg/kg d-amphetamine from saline in a two-choice discrete-trial procedure. Stimulus-generalization curves were generated by cumulative dosing for d-amphetamine (0.1-1.0 mg/kg), methylphenidate (0.3-5.6 mg/kg), SKF 81297 (0.3-3.0 mg/kg), and R-(-)-propylnorapomorphine (NPA; 0.001-1.78 mg/kg), as well as for caffeine (3.0-56 mg/kg); curves were re-determined after twice daily injections of caffeine (30 mg/kg) for 3.5 days. The rats generalized dose dependently to the four dopaminergic drugs, but only to a limited extent to caffeine. Twice daily injections of caffeine induced significant cross tolerance (i.e., increased ED(50)) to the amphetamine-like discriminative effects of methylphenidate and SKF 81297, attenuated non-significantly the effects of NPA, and did not alter the effects of amphetamine. Thus, caffeine produces differential cross tolerance to the amphetamine-like discriminative effects of dopaminergic drugs, a phenomenon in which the dopamine D(1) receptor appears to have an important role.

  7. Effects of stimulus order on discrimination processes in comparative and equality judgements: data and models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyjas, Oliver; Ulrich, Rolf

    2014-01-01

    In typical discrimination experiments, participants are presented with a constant standard and a variable comparison stimulus and their task is to judge which of these two stimuli is larger (comparative judgement). In these experiments, discrimination sensitivity depends on the temporal order of these stimuli (Type B effect) and is usually higher when the standard precedes rather than follows the comparison. Here, we outline how two models of stimulus discrimination can account for the Type B effect, namely the weighted difference model (or basic Sensation Weighting model) and the Internal Reference Model. For both models, the predicted psychometric functions for comparative judgements as well as for equality judgements, in which participants indicate whether they perceived the two stimuli to be equal or not equal, are derived and it is shown that the models also predict a Type B effect for equality judgements. In the empirical part, the models' predictions are evaluated. To this end, participants performed a duration discrimination task with comparative judgements and with equality judgements. In line with the models' predictions, a Type B effect was observed for both judgement types. In addition, a time-order error, as indicated by shifts of the psychometric functions, and differences in response times were observed only for the equality judgement. Since both models entail distinct additional predictions, it seems worthwhile for future research to unite the two models into one conceptual framework.

  8. Attenuation of cocaine's reinforcing and discriminative stimulus effects via muscarinic M1 acetylcholine receptor stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Morgane; Conn, P Jeffrey; Lindsley, Craig

    2010-01-01

    substituted for cocaine and enhanced its discriminative stimulus. Conversely, muscarinic agonists blunted cocaine discrimination and abolished cocaine self-administration with varying effects on food-maintained behavior. Specifically, increasing selectivity for the M(1) subtype (oxotremorine ...'s abuse-related effects, whereas non-M(1)/M(4) receptors probably contribute to undesirable effects of muscarinic stimulation. These data provide the first demonstration of anticocaine effects of systemically applied, M(1) receptor agonists and suggest the possibility of a new approach to pharmacotherapy...

  9. Different target-discrimination times can be followed by the same saccade-initiation timing in different stimulus conditions during visual searches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Tomohiro; Nishida, Satoshi

    2015-01-01

    The neuronal processes that underlie visual searches can be divided into two stages: target discrimination and saccade preparation/generation. This predicts that the length of time of the prediscrimination stage varies according to the search difficulty across different stimulus conditions, whereas the length of the latter postdiscrimination stage is stimulus invariant. However, recent studies have suggested that the length of the postdiscrimination interval changes with different stimulus conditions. To address whether and how the visual stimulus affects determination of the postdiscrimination interval, we recorded single-neuron activity in the lateral intraparietal area (LIP) when monkeys (Macaca fuscata) performed a color-singleton search involving four stimulus conditions that differed regarding luminance (Bright vs. Dim) and target-distractor color similarity (Easy vs. Difficult). We specifically focused on comparing activities between the Bright-Difficult and Dim-Easy conditions, in which the visual stimuli were considerably different, but the mean reaction times were indistinguishable. This allowed us to examine the neuronal activity when the difference in the degree of search speed between different stimulus conditions was minimal. We found that not only prediscrimination but also postdiscrimination intervals varied across stimulus conditions: the postdiscrimination interval was longer in the Dim-Easy condition than in the Bright-Difficult condition. Further analysis revealed that the postdiscrimination interval might vary with stimulus luminance. A computer simulation using an accumulation-to-threshold model suggested that the luminance-related difference in visual response strength at discrimination time could be the cause of different postdiscrimination intervals. PMID:25995344

  10. Dopamine D3 receptors mediate the discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole in free-feeding rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baladi, Michelle G; Newman, Amy H; France, Charles P

    2010-01-01

    The discriminative stimulus effects of dopamine (DA) D3/D2 receptor agonists are thought to be mediated by D2 receptors. To maintain responding, access to food is often restricted, which can alter neurochemical and behavioral effects of drugs acting on DA systems. This study established stimulus control with quinpirole in free-feeding rats and tested the ability of agonists to mimic and antagonists to attenuate the effects of quinpirole. The same antagonists were studied for their ability to attenuate quinpirole-induced yawning and hypothermia. DA receptor agonists apomorphine and lisuride, but not amphetamine and morphine, occasioned responding on the quinpirole lever. The discriminative stimulus effects of quinpirole were attenuated by the D3 receptor-selective antagonist N-{4-[4-(2,3-dichlorophenyl)-piperazin-1-yl]-trans-but-2-enyl}-4-pyridine-2-yl-benzamide HCl (PG01037) and the nonselective D3/D2 receptor antagonist raclopride, but not by the D2 receptor-selective antagonist 3-[4-(4-chlorophenyl)-4-hydroxypiperidin-1-yl]methyl-1H-indole (L-741,626); the potencies of PG01037 and raclopride to antagonize this effect of quinpirole paralleled their potencies to antagonize the ascending limb of the quinpirole yawning dose-response curve (thought to be mediated by D3 receptors). L-741,626 selectively antagonized the descending limb of the quinpirole yawning dose-response curve, and both L-741,626 and raclopride, but not PG01037, antagonized the hypothermic effects of quinpirole (thought to be mediated by D2 receptors). Food restriction (10 g/day/7 days) significantly decreased quinpirole-induced yawning without affecting the quinpirole discrimination. Many discrimination studies on DA receptor agonists use food-restricted rats; together with those studies, the current experiment using free-feeding rats suggests that feeding conditions affecting the behavioral effects of direct-acting DA receptor agonists might also have an impact on the effects of indirect

  11. Context-Dependent Modulation of Functional Connectivity: Secondary Somatosensory Cortex to Prefrontal Cortex Connections in Two-Stimulus-Interval Discrimination Tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Chow, Stephanie S.; Romo, Ranulfo; Brody, Carlos D.

    2009-01-01

    In a complex world, a sensory cue may prompt different actions in different contexts. A laboratory example of context-dependent sensory processing is the two-stimulus-interval discrimination task. In each trial, a first stimulus (f1) must be stored in short-term memory and later compared with a second stimulus (f2), for the animal to come to a binary decision. Prefrontal cortex (PFC) neurons need to interpret the f1 information in one way (perhaps with a positive weight) and the f2 informatio...

  12. Enhanced discriminative stimulus effects of Δ(9)-THC in the presence of cannabidiol and 8-OH-DPAT in rhesus monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMahon, Lance R

    2016-08-01

    Cannabidiol, a therapeutic with potential serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) 5-HT1A receptor agonist activity, is the second most prevalent cannabinoid in Cannabis after Δ(9)-THC. The extent to which cannabidiol modifies the effects of Δ(9)-THC has not been firmly established, especially with respect to abuse-related effects in rhesus monkeys where previously antagonistic interactions have been reported for some behavioral outcomes. Cannabidiol and the 5-HT1A receptor agonist (±)-8-hydroxy-2-(dipropylamino)tetralin hydrobromide (8-OH-DPAT) were tested in two separate discrimination assays in rhesus monkeys. One group (n=6) discriminated Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC; 0.1mg/kg i.v.); a second group (n=6) discriminated the cannabinoid antagonist rimonabant (1mg/kg i.v.) while receiving Δ(9)-THC daily (1mg/kg/12hs.c.). Responding was maintained under a fixed ratio 5 schedule of stimulus-shock termination. Both training drugs dose-dependently increased the percentage of responses on the respective drug-associated levers. Cannabidiol (up to 17.8mg/kg) and 8-OH-DPAT (up to 0.178mg/kg) did not substitute for either training drug; however, both significantly increased the potency of Δ(9)-THC to produce discriminative stimulus effects. Moreover, 8-OH-DPAT significantly attenuated the discriminative stimulus effects of rimonabant, whereas cannabidiol did not modify the rimonabant discriminative stimulus. These results, which are consistent with cannabidiol lacking CB1 receptor agonist or antagonist activity in vivo, demonstrate enhancement of the effects of Δ(9)-THC by cannabidiol, albeit at cannabidiol amounts larger than those in Cannabis or cannabidiol-based therapeutics (nabiximols). In addition to showing that cannabidiol and a 5-HT1A receptor agonist have overlapping behavioral effects, the current results suggest that 5-HT1A agonism enhances the CB1 receptor-mediated effects of Δ(9)-THC. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Enhanced discriminative stimulus effects of Δ9-THC in the presence of cannabidiol and 8-OH-DPAT in rhesus monkeys

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMahon, Lance R.

    2016-01-01

    Background Cannabidiol, a therapeutic with potential serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) 5-HT1A receptor agonist activity, is the second most prevalent cannabinoid in Cannabis after Δ9-THC. The extent to which cannabidiol modifies the effects of Δ9-THC has not been firmly established, especially with respect to abuse-related effects in rhesus monkeys where previously antagonistic interactions have been reported for some behavioral outcomes. Methods Cannabidiol and the 5-HT1A receptor agonist (±)-8-hydroxy-2-(dipropylamino)tetralin hydrobromide (8-OH-DPAT) were tested in two separate discrimination assays in rhesus monkeys. One group (n=6) discriminated Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC; 0.1 mg/kg i.v.); a second group (n=6) discriminated the cannabinoid antagonist rimonabant (1 mg/kg i.v.) while receiving Δ9-THC daily (1 mg/kg/12 h s.c.). Responding was maintained under a fixed ratio 5 schedule of stimulus-shock termination. Results Both training drugs dose-dependently increased the percentage of responses on the respective drug-associated levers. Cannabidiol (up to 17.8 mg/kg) and 8-OH-DPAT (up to 0.178 mg/kg) did not substitute for either training drug; however, both significantly increased the potency of Δ9-THC to produce discriminative stimulus effects. Moreover, 8-OH-DPAT significantly attenuated the discriminative stimulus effects of rimonabant, whereas cannabidiol did not modify the rimonabant discriminative stimulus. Conclusions These results, which are consistent with cannabidiol lacking CB1 receptor agonist or antagonist activity in vivo, demonstrate enhancement of the effects of Δ9-THC by cannabidiol, albeit at cannabidiol amounts larger than those in Cannabis or cannabidiol-based therapeutics (nabiximols). In addition to showing that cannabidiol and a 5-HT1A receptor agonist have overlapping behavioral effects, the current results suggest that 5-HT1A agonism enhances the CB1 receptor-mediated effects of Δ9-THC. PMID:27289270

  14. Pavlovian Extinction of the Discriminative Stimulus Effects of Nicotine and Ethanol in Rats Varies as a Function of Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troisi, Joseph R., II

    2011-01-01

    Operant extinction contingencies can undermine the discriminative stimulus effects of drugs. Here, nicotine (0.4 mg/kg) and ethanol (0.8 g/kg) first functioned as either an S[superscript D] or S[superscript Delta], in a counterbalanced one-lever go/no-go (across sessions) operant drug discrimination procedure. Pavlovian extinction in the training…

  15. Infant speech-sound discrimination testing: effects of stimulus intensity and procedural model on measures of performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nozza, R J

    1987-06-01

    Performance of infants in a speech-sound discrimination task (/ba/ vs /da/) was measured at three stimulus intensity levels (50, 60, and 70 dB SPL) using the operant head-turn procedure. The procedure was modified so that data could be treated as though from a single-interval (yes-no) procedure, as is commonly done, as well as if from a sustained attention (vigilance) task. Discrimination performance changed significantly with increase in intensity, suggesting caution in the interpretation of results from infant discrimination studies in which only single stimulus intensity levels within this range are used. The assumptions made about the underlying methodological model did not change the performance-intensity relationships. However, infants demonstrated response decrement, typical of vigilance tasks, which supports the notion that the head-turn procedure is represented best by the vigilance model. Analysis then was done according to a method designed for tasks with undefined observation intervals [C. S. Watson and T. L. Nichols, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 59, 655-668 (1976)]. Results reveal that, while group data are reasonably well represented across levels of difficulty by the fixed-interval model, there is a variation in performance as a function of time following trial onset that could lead to underestimation of performance in some cases.

  16. Is it possible to replace stimulus animals by scent-filled cups in the social discrimination test?

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Bos, Ruud; van der Horst, Klaske J; Baars, Annemarie M; Spruijt, Berry M

    2002-01-01

    A study in which the rat social discrimination test was refined is described. This test measures social memory by using, in general, juvenile rats as stimulus animals. Rats are offered a first juvenile to investigate (learning trial), and after a specified interval, the rats are offered the same rat and a second juvenile rat to investigate again (retrieval trial). When the rats sniff the second juvenile in the retrieval trial more than the first, social memory for the second juvenile is said to be present. This test is mainly based on scents from the juvenile. Attempts were made to refine the test to reduce the number of animals used, to enhance the scope of the test, and to improve its validity. Firstly, the stimulus animals were replaced by the scent of juveniles, in the form of cups filled with sawdust taken from cages of juvenile rats. Similar results to those in the original test were obtained when using these scents. Furthermore, male and female scents were tested, and showed the same results as for the juvenile scents. Secondly, rats were also given two cups (one scent-filled and one filled with plain sawdust) in the learning trial, to determine which allowed a more-precise delineation of motivational, discriminatory and memory components. Overall, it is possible to replace stimulus animals by scent-filled cups in the social discrimination test, to enhance the scope of the test, and to draw more-valid conclusions with respect to social memory.

  17. Cocaine-like discriminative stimulus effects of alpha-pyrrolidinovalerophenone, methcathinone and their 3,4-methylenedioxy or 4-methyl analogs in rhesus monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Douglas A; Negus, S Stevens; Poklis, Justin L; Blough, Bruce E; Banks, Matthew L

    2017-09-01

    Synthetic cathinones are beta-ketone amphetamine analogs that have emerged as a heterogeneous class of abused compounds that function as either monoamine transporter substrates or inhibitors. Pre-clinical drug discrimination procedures are useful for interrogating structure-activity relationships of abuse-related drug effects; however, in vivo structure-activity relationship comparisons between synthetic cathinones with different mechanisms of action are lacking. The aim of the present study was to determine whether the cocaine-like discriminative stimulus effects of the monoamine transporter inhibitor alpha-pyrrolidinovalerophenone (alpha-PVP) and the monoamine transporter substrate methcathinone were differentially sensitive to 3,4-methylenedioxy and 4-methyl substitutions. Male rhesus monkeys (n = 4) were trained to discriminate intramuscular cocaine (0.32 mg/kg) from saline in a two-key food-reinforced discrimination procedure. Potency and timecourse of cocaine-like discriminative stimulus effects were determined for (±)-alpha-PVP, (±)-methcathinone and their 3,4-methylenedioxy or 4-methyl analogs. Alpha-PVP and methcathinone produced dose- and time-dependent cocaine-like effects. A 3,4-methylenedioxy addition to either alpha-PVP or methcathinone (methylone) did not alter the potency or efficacy to produce cocaine-like effects, but did prolong the time course. A 4-methyl addition to alpha-PVP (pyrovalerone) did not alter the potency or efficacy to produce cocaine-like effects, but did prolong the time course. In contrast, addition of a 4-methyl moiety to methcathinone (4MMC; mephedrone) significantly attenuated efficacy to produce cocaine-like effects. Overall, these results suggest different structural requirements for cocaine-like discriminative stimulus effects of monoamine transporter inhibitor and substrate synthetic cathinone analogs. Given that 4MMC is more hydrophobic than MDMC, these results suggest that hydrophobicity may be an important

  18. Discriminative learning of receptive fields from responses to non-Gaussian stimulus ensembles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Arne F; Diepenbrock, Jan-Philipp; Happel, Max F K; Ohl, Frank W; Anemüller, Jörn

    2014-01-01

    Analysis of sensory neurons' processing characteristics requires simultaneous measurement of presented stimuli and concurrent spike responses. The functional transformation from high-dimensional stimulus space to the binary space of spike and non-spike responses is commonly described with linear-nonlinear models, whose linear filter component describes the neuron's receptive field. From a machine learning perspective, this corresponds to the binary classification problem of discriminating spike-eliciting from non-spike-eliciting stimulus examples. The classification-based receptive field (CbRF) estimation method proposed here adapts a linear large-margin classifier to optimally predict experimental stimulus-response data and subsequently interprets learned classifier weights as the neuron's receptive field filter. Computational learning theory provides a theoretical framework for learning from data and guarantees optimality in the sense that the risk of erroneously assigning a spike-eliciting stimulus example to the non-spike class (and vice versa) is minimized. Efficacy of the CbRF method is validated with simulations and for auditory spectro-temporal receptive field (STRF) estimation from experimental recordings in the auditory midbrain of Mongolian gerbils. Acoustic stimulation is performed with frequency-modulated tone complexes that mimic properties of natural stimuli, specifically non-Gaussian amplitude distribution and higher-order correlations. Results demonstrate that the proposed approach successfully identifies correct underlying STRFs, even in cases where second-order methods based on the spike-triggered average (STA) do not. Applied to small data samples, the method is shown to converge on smaller amounts of experimental recordings and with lower estimation variance than the generalized linear model and recent information theoretic methods. Thus, CbRF estimation may prove useful for investigation of neuronal processes in response to natural stimuli and

  19. Discriminative learning of receptive fields from responses to non-Gaussian stimulus ensembles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arne F Meyer

    Full Text Available Analysis of sensory neurons' processing characteristics requires simultaneous measurement of presented stimuli and concurrent spike responses. The functional transformation from high-dimensional stimulus space to the binary space of spike and non-spike responses is commonly described with linear-nonlinear models, whose linear filter component describes the neuron's receptive field. From a machine learning perspective, this corresponds to the binary classification problem of discriminating spike-eliciting from non-spike-eliciting stimulus examples. The classification-based receptive field (CbRF estimation method proposed here adapts a linear large-margin classifier to optimally predict experimental stimulus-response data and subsequently interprets learned classifier weights as the neuron's receptive field filter. Computational learning theory provides a theoretical framework for learning from data and guarantees optimality in the sense that the risk of erroneously assigning a spike-eliciting stimulus example to the non-spike class (and vice versa is minimized. Efficacy of the CbRF method is validated with simulations and for auditory spectro-temporal receptive field (STRF estimation from experimental recordings in the auditory midbrain of Mongolian gerbils. Acoustic stimulation is performed with frequency-modulated tone complexes that mimic properties of natural stimuli, specifically non-Gaussian amplitude distribution and higher-order correlations. Results demonstrate that the proposed approach successfully identifies correct underlying STRFs, even in cases where second-order methods based on the spike-triggered average (STA do not. Applied to small data samples, the method is shown to converge on smaller amounts of experimental recordings and with lower estimation variance than the generalized linear model and recent information theoretic methods. Thus, CbRF estimation may prove useful for investigation of neuronal processes in response to

  20. Feeding condition and the relative contribution of different dopamine receptor subtypes to the discriminative stimulus effects of cocaine in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baladi, Michelle G; Newman, Amy H; France, Charles P

    2014-02-01

    The contribution of dopamine receptor subtypes in mediating the discriminative stimulus effects of cocaine is not fully established. Many drug discrimination studies use food to maintain responding, necessitating food restriction, which can alter drug effects. This study established stimulus control with cocaine (10 mg/kg) in free-feeding and food-restricted rats responding under a schedule of stimulus shock termination (SST) and in food-restricted rats responding under a schedule of food presentation to examine whether feeding condition or the reinforcer used to maintain responding impacts the effects of cocaine. Dopamine receptor agonists and antagonists were examined for their ability to mimic or attenuate, respectively, the effects of cocaine. Apomorphine, quinpirole, and lisuride occasioned >90 % responding on the cocaine-associated lever in free-feeding rats responding under a schedule of SST; apomorphine, but not quinpirole or lisuride, occasioned >90 % responding on the cocaine lever in food-restricted rats responding under a schedule of SST. In food-restricted rats responding for food these drugs occasioned little cocaine lever responding and were comparatively more potent in decreasing responding. In free-feeding rats, the effects of cocaine were attenuated by the D2/D3 receptor antagonist raclopride and the D3 receptor-selective antagonist PG01037. In food-restricted rats, raclopride and the D2 receptor-selective antagonist L-741,626 attenuated the effects of cocaine. Raclopride antagonized quinpirole in all groups while PG01037 antagonized quinpirole only in free-feeding rats. These results demonstrate significant differences in the discriminative stimulus of cocaine that are due to feeding conditions and not to the use of different reinforcers across procedures.

  1. Phenotypic assessment of THC discriminative stimulus properties in fatty acid amide hydrolase knockout and wildtype mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walentiny, D Matthew; Vann, Robert E; Wiley, Jenny L

    2015-06-01

    A number of studies have examined the ability of the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide to elicit Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-like subjective effects, as modeled through the THC discrimination paradigm. In the present study, we compared transgenic mice lacking fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the enzyme primarily responsible for anandamide catabolism, to wildtype counterparts in a THC discrimination procedure. THC (5.6 mg/kg) served as a discriminative stimulus in both genotypes, with similar THC dose-response curves between groups. Anandamide fully substituted for THC in FAAH knockout, but not wildtype, mice. Conversely, the metabolically stable anandamide analog O-1812 fully substituted in both groups, but was more potent in knockouts. The CB1 receptor antagonist rimonabant dose-dependently attenuated THC generalization in both groups and anandamide substitution in FAAH knockouts. Pharmacological inhibition of monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL), the primary catabolic enzyme for the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), with JZL184 resulted in full substitution for THC in FAAH knockout mice and nearly full substitution in wildtypes. Quantification of brain endocannabinoid levels revealed expected elevations in anandamide in FAAH knockout mice compared to wildtypes and equipotent dose-dependent elevations in 2-AG following JZL184 administration. Dual inhibition of FAAH and MAGL with JZL195 resulted in roughly equipotent increases in THC-appropriate responding in both groups. While the notable similarity in THC's discriminative stimulus effects across genotype suggests that the increased baseline brain anandamide levels (as seen in FAAH knockout mice) do not alter THC's subjective effects, FAAH knockout mice are more sensitive to the THC-like effects of pharmacologically induced increases in anandamide and MAGL inhibition (e.g., JZL184). Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Predicting dynamic range and intensity discrimination for electrical pulse-train stimuli using a stochastic auditory nerve model: the effects of stimulus noise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yifang; Collins, Leslie M

    2005-06-01

    This work investigates dynamic range and intensity discrimination for electrical pulse-train stimuli that are modulated by noise using a stochastic auditory nerve model. Based on a hypothesized monotonic relationship between loudness and the number of spikes elicited by a stimulus, theoretical prediction of the uncomfortable level has previously been determined by comparing spike counts to a fixed threshold, Nucl. However, no specific rule for determining Nucl has been suggested. Our work determines the uncomfortable level based on the excitation pattern of the neural response in a normal ear. The number of fibers corresponding to the portion of the basilar membrane driven by a stimulus at an uncomfortable level in a normal ear is related to Nucl at an uncomfortable level of the electrical stimulus. Intensity discrimination limens are predicted using signal detection theory via the probability mass function of the neural response and via experimental simulations. The results show that the uncomfortable level for pulse-train stimuli increases slightly as noise level increases. Combining this with our previous threshold predictions, we hypothesize that the dynamic range for noise-modulated pulse-train stimuli should increase with additive noise. However, since our predictions indicate that intensity discrimination under noise degrades, overall intensity coding performance may not improve significantly.

  3. Stress Alters the Discriminative Stimulus and Response Rate Effects of Cocaine Differentially in Lewis and Fischer Inbred Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Therese A. Kosten

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Stress enhances the behavioral effects of cocaine, perhaps via hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis activity. Yet, compared to Fischer 344 (F344 rats, Lewis rats have hyporesponsive HPA axis function and more readily acquire cocaine self-administration. We hypothesized that stress would differentially affect cocaine behaviors in these strains. The effects of three stressors on the discriminative stimulus and response rate effects of cocaine were investigated. Rats of both strains were trained to discriminate cocaine (10 mg/kg from saline using a two-lever, food-reinforced (FR10 procedure. Immediately prior to cumulative dose (1, 3, 10 mg/kg cocaine test sessions, rats were restrained for 15-min, had 15-min of footshock in a distinct context, or were placed in the shock-paired context. Another set of F344 and Lewis rats were tested similarly except they received vehicle injections to test if stress substituted for cocaine. Most vehicle-tested rats failed to respond after stressor exposures. Among cocaine-tested rats, restraint stress enhanced cocaine’s discriminative stimulus effects in F344 rats. Shock and shock-context increased response rates in Lewis rats. Stress-induced increases in corticosterone levels showed strain differences but did not correlate with behavior. These data suggest that the behavioral effects of cocaine can be differentially affected by stress in a strain-selective manner.

  4. Spatial probability aids visual stimulus discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Druker

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available We investigated whether the statistical predictability of a target's location would influence how quickly and accurately it was classified. Recent results have suggested that spatial probability can be a cue for the allocation of attention in visual search. One explanation for probability cuing is spatial repetition priming. In our two experiments we used probability distributions that were continuous across the display rather than relying on a few arbitrary screen locations. This produced fewer spatial repeats and allowed us to dissociate the effect of a high probability location from that of short-term spatial repetition. The task required participants to quickly judge the color of a single dot presented on a computer screen. In Experiment 1, targets were more probable in an off-center hotspot of high probability that gradually declined to a background rate. Targets garnered faster responses if they were near earlier target locations (priming and if they were near the high probability hotspot (probability cuing. In Experiment 2, target locations were chosen on three concentric circles around fixation. One circle contained 80% of targets. The value of this ring distribution is that it allowed for a spatially restricted high probability zone in which sequentially repeated trials were not likely to be physically close. Participant performance was sensitive to the high-probability circle in addition to the expected effects of eccentricity and the distance to recent targets. These two experiments suggest that inhomogeneities in spatial probability can be learned and used by participants on-line and without prompting as an aid for visual stimulus discrimination and that spatial repetition priming is not a sufficient explanation for this effect. Future models of attention should consider explicitly incorporating the probabilities of targets locations and features.

  5. Intergroup Discrimination in Positive and Negative Outcome Allocations: Impact of Stimulus Valence, Relative Group Status, and Relative Group Size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otten, Sabine; And Others

    1996-01-01

    Three studies investigated the determination of social discrimination by the valence of stimuli that are allocated between groups. The studies were based on either the minimal group paradigm or a more reality-based laboratory intergroup setting, with stimulus valence, group status, and group size as factors and with pull scores on Tajfel matrices…

  6. Relationship between discriminative stimulus effects and plasma methamphetamine and amphetamine levels of intramuscular methamphetamine in male rhesus monkeys

    OpenAIRE

    Banks, Matthew L.; Smith, Douglas A.; Kisor, David F.; Poklis, Justin L.

    2015-01-01

    Methamphetamine is a globally abused drug that is metabolized to amphetamine, which also produces abuse-related behavioral effects. However, the contributing role of methamphetamine metabolism to amphetamine in methamphetamine's abuse-related subjective effects is unknown. This preclinical study was designed to determine 1) the relationship between plasma methamphetamine levels and methamphetamine discriminative stimulus effects and 2) the contribution of the methamphetamine metabolite amphet...

  7. Behavioral determination of stimulus pair discrimination of auditory acoustic and electrical stimuli using a classical conditioning and heart-rate approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Simeon J; Paolini, Antonio G

    2012-06-06

    Acute animal preparations have been used in research prospectively investigating electrode designs and stimulation techniques for integration into neural auditory prostheses, such as auditory brainstem implants and auditory midbrain implants. While acute experiments can give initial insight to the effectiveness of the implant, testing the chronically implanted and awake animals provides the advantage of examining the psychophysical properties of the sensations induced using implanted devices. Several techniques such as reward-based operant conditioning, conditioned avoidance, or classical fear conditioning have been used to provide behavioral confirmation of detection of a relevant stimulus attribute. Selection of a technique involves balancing aspects including time efficiency (often poor in reward-based approaches), the ability to test a plurality of stimulus attributes simultaneously (limited in conditioned avoidance), and measure reliability of repeated stimuli (a potential constraint when physiological measures are employed). Here, a classical fear conditioning behavioral method is presented which may be used to simultaneously test both detection of a stimulus, and discrimination between two stimuli. Heart-rate is used as a measure of fear response, which reduces or eliminates the requirement for time-consuming video coding for freeze behaviour or other such measures (although such measures could be included to provide convergent evidence). Animals were conditioned using these techniques in three 2-hour conditioning sessions, each providing 48 stimulus trials. Subsequent 48-trial testing sessions were then used to test for detection of each stimulus in presented pairs, and test discrimination between the member stimuli of each pair. This behavioral method is presented in the context of its utilisation in auditory prosthetic research. The implantation of electrocardiogram telemetry devices is shown. Subsequent implantation of brain electrodes into the Cochlear

  8. Racial Discrimination in the Sharing Economy: Evidence from a Field Experiment

    OpenAIRE

    Edelman, Benjamin Gordon; Luca, Michael; Svirsky, Daniel Alejandro

    2017-01-01

    In an experiment on Airbnb, we find that applications from guests with distinctively African-American names are 16% less likely to be accepted relative to identical guests with distinctively White names. Discrimination occurs among landlords of all sizes, including small landlords sharing the property and larger landlords with multiple properties. It is most pronounced among hosts who have never had an African-American guest, suggesting only a subset of hosts discriminate. While rental market...

  9. Discriminative identification of transcriptional responses of promoters and enhancers after stimulus

    KAUST Repository

    Kleftogiannis, Dimitrios A.

    2016-10-17

    Promoters and enhancers regulate the initiation of gene expression and maintenance of expression levels in spatial and temporal manner. Recent findings stemming from the Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) demonstrate that promoters and enhancers, based on their expression profiles after stimulus, belong to different transcription response subclasses. One of the most promising biological features that might explain the difference in transcriptional response between subclasses is the local chromatin environment. We introduce a novel computational framework, PEDAL, for distinguishing effectively transcriptional profiles of promoters and enhancers using solely histone modification marks, chromatin accessibility and binding sites of transcription factors and co-activators. A case study on data from MCF-7 cell-line reveals that PEDAL can identify successfully the transcription response subclasses of promoters and enhancers from two different stimulations. Moreover, we report subsets of input markers that discriminate with minimized classification error MCF-7 promoter and enhancer transcription response subclasses. Our work provides a general computational approach for identifying effectively cell-specific and stimulation-specific promoter and enhancer transcriptional profiles, and thus, contributes to improve our understanding of transcriptional activation in human.

  10. Stimulus-dependent effects on tactile spatial acuity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tommerdahl M

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous studies have shown that spatio-tactile acuity is influenced by the clarity of the cortical response in primary somatosensory cortex (SI. Stimulus characteristics such as frequency, amplitude, and location of tactile stimuli presented to the skin have been shown to have a significant effect on the response in SI. The present study observes the effect of changing stimulus parameters of 25 Hz sinusoidal vertical skin displacement stimulation ("flutter" on a human subject's ability to discriminate between two adjacent or near-adjacent skin sites. Based on results obtained from recent neurophysiological studies of the SI response to different conditions of vibrotactile stimulation, we predicted that the addition of 200 Hz vibration to the same site that a two-point flutter stimulus was delivered on the skin would improve a subject's spatio-tactile acuity over that measured with flutter alone. Additionally, similar neurophysiological studies predict that the presence of either a 25 Hz flutter or 200 Hz vibration stimulus on the unattended hand (on the opposite side of the body from the site of two-point limen testing – the condition of bilateral stimulation – which has been shown to evoke less SI cortical activity than the contralateral-only stimulus condition would decrease a subject's ability to discriminate between two points on the skin. Results A Bekesy tracking method was employed to track a subject's ability to discriminate between two-point stimuli delivered to the skin. The distance between the two points of stimulation was varied on a trial-by-trial basis, and several different stimulus conditions were examined: (1 The "control" condition, in which 25 Hz flutter stimuli were delivered simultaneously to the two points on the skin of the attended hand, (2 the "complex" condition, in which a combination of 25 Hz flutter and 200 Hz vibration stimuli were delivered to the two points on the attended hand, and (3 a

  11. Stimulus familiarity modulates functional connectivity of the perirhinal cortex and anterior hippocampus during visual discrimination of faces and objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLelland, Victoria C.; Chan, David; Ferber, Susanne; Barense, Morgan D.

    2014-01-01

    Recent research suggests that the medial temporal lobe (MTL) is involved in perception as well as in declarative memory. Amnesic patients with focal MTL lesions and semantic dementia patients showed perceptual deficits when discriminating faces and objects. Interestingly, these two patient groups showed different profiles of impairment for familiar and unfamiliar stimuli. For MTL amnesics, the use of familiar relative to unfamiliar stimuli improved discrimination performance. By contrast, patients with semantic dementia—a neurodegenerative condition associated with anterolateral temporal lobe damage—showed no such facilitation from familiar stimuli. Given that the two patient groups had highly overlapping patterns of damage to the perirhinal cortex, hippocampus, and temporal pole, the neuroanatomical substrates underlying their performance discrepancy were unclear. Here, we addressed this question with a multivariate reanalysis of the data presented by Barense et al. (2011), using functional connectivity to examine how stimulus familiarity affected the broader networks with which the perirhinal cortex, hippocampus, and temporal poles interact. In this study, healthy participants were scanned while they performed an odd-one-out perceptual task involving familiar and novel faces or objects. Seed-based analyses revealed that functional connectivity of the right perirhinal cortex and right anterior hippocampus was modulated by the degree of stimulus familiarity. For familiar relative to unfamiliar faces and objects, both right perirhinal cortex and right anterior hippocampus showed enhanced functional correlations with anterior/lateral temporal cortex, temporal pole, and medial/lateral parietal cortex. These findings suggest that in order to benefit from stimulus familiarity, it is necessary to engage not only the perirhinal cortex and hippocampus, but also a network of regions known to represent semantic information. PMID:24624075

  12. Effects of Multimodal Presentation and Stimulus Familiarity on Auditory and Visual Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Christopher W.; Sloutsky, Vladimir M.

    2010-01-01

    Two experiments examined the effects of multimodal presentation and stimulus familiarity on auditory and visual processing. In Experiment 1, 10-month-olds were habituated to either an auditory stimulus, a visual stimulus, or an auditory-visual multimodal stimulus. Processing time was assessed during the habituation phase, and discrimination of…

  13. Automatic detection of frequency changes depends on auditory stimulus intensity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salo, S; Lang, A H; Aaltonen, O; Lertola, K; Kärki, T

    1999-06-01

    A cortical cognitive auditory evoked potential, mismatch negativity (MMN), reflects automatic discrimination and echoic memory functions of the auditory system. For this study, we examined whether this potential is dependent on the stimulus intensity. The MMN potentials were recorded from 10 subjects with normal hearing using a sine tone of 1000 Hz as the standard stimulus and a sine tone of 1141 Hz as the deviant stimulus, with probabilities of 90% and 10%, respectively. The intensities were 40, 50, 60, 70, and 80 dB HL for both standard and deviant stimuli in separate blocks. Stimulus intensity had a statistically significant effect on the mean amplitude, rise time parameter, and onset latency of the MMN. Automatic auditory discrimination seems to be dependent on the sound pressure level of the stimuli.

  14. Temporal integration: intentional sound discrimination does not modulate stimulus-driven processes in auditory event synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sussman, Elyse; Winkler, István; Kreuzer, Judith; Saher, Marieke; Näätänen, Risto; Ritter, Walter

    2002-12-01

    Our previous study showed that the auditory context could influence whether two successive acoustic changes occurring within the temporal integration window (approximately 200ms) were pre-attentively encoded as a single auditory event or as two discrete events (Cogn Brain Res 12 (2001) 431). The aim of the current study was to assess whether top-down processes could influence the stimulus-driven processes in determining what constitutes an auditory event. Electroencepholagram (EEG) was recorded from 11 scalp electrodes to frequently occurring standard and infrequently occurring deviant sounds. Within the stimulus blocks, deviants either occurred only in pairs (successive feature changes) or both singly and in pairs. Event-related potential indices of change and target detection, the mismatch negativity (MMN) and the N2b component, respectively, were compared with the simultaneously measured performance in discriminating the deviants. Even though subjects could voluntarily distinguish the two successive auditory feature changes from each other, which was also indicated by the elicitation of the N2b target-detection response, top-down processes did not modify the event organization reflected by the MMN response. Top-down processes can extract elemental auditory information from a single integrated acoustic event, but the extraction occurs at a later processing stage than the one whose outcome is indexed by MMN. Initial processes of auditory event-formation are fully governed by the context within which the sounds occur. Perception of the deviants as two separate sound events (the top-down effects) did not change the initial neural representation of the same deviants as one event (indexed by the MMN), without a corresponding change in the stimulus-driven sound organization.

  15. Errorless discrimination established by differential autoshaping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkie, D M; Ramer, D G

    1974-09-01

    In Experiment I, pigeons exposed to a differential autoshaping procedure pecked a key in the presence of the stimulus associated with reinforcement but did not peck, or pecked infrequently, in the presence of the stimulus associated with nonreinforcement. In Experiment II, pigeons were exposed to a differential autoshaping procedure in which one stimulus was associated with reinforcement and two stimuli were associated with nonreinforcement. The birds initially responded in the presence of one stimulus associated with nonreinforcement but never responded in the presence of the second stimulus associated with nonreinforcement. They were subsequently exposed to an autoshaping procedure in which reinforcement followed both these stimuli. The number of stimulus-reinforcement pairings required to establish pecking in the presence of the stimulus during which responses had not previously occurred suggested that such stimuli are inhibitory. These findings have implications for autoshaping, errorless discrimination, inhibition, and theories of discrimination byproducts.

  16. Impact of stimulus uncanniness on speeded response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kohske eTakahashi

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available In the uncanny valley phenomenon, the causes of the feeling of uncanniness as well as the impact of the uncanniness on behavioral performances still remain open. The present study investigated the behavioral effects of stimulus uncanniness, particularly with respect to speeded response. Pictures of fish were used as visual stimuli. Participants engaged in direction discrimination, spatial cueing, and dot-probe tasks. The results showed that pictures rated as strongly uncanny delayed speeded response in the discrimination of the direction of the fish. In the cueing experiment, where a fish served as a task-irrelevant and unpredictable cue for a peripheral target, we again observed that the detection of a target was slowed when the cue was an uncanny fish. Conversely, the dot-probe task suggested that uncanny fish, unlike threatening stimulus, did not capture visual spatial attention. These results suggested that stimulus uncanniness resulted in the delayed response, and importantly this modulation was not mediated by the feelings of threat.

  17. A model for food and stimulus changes that signal time-based contingency changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowie, Sarah; Davison, Michael; Elliffe, Douglas

    2014-11-01

    When the availability of reinforcers depends on time since an event, time functions as a discriminative stimulus. Behavioral control by elapsed time is generally weak, but may be enhanced by added stimuli that act as additional time markers. The present paper assessed the effect of brief and continuous added stimuli on control by time-based changes in the reinforcer differential, using a procedure in which the local reinforcer ratio reversed at a fixed time after the most recent reinforcer delivery. Local choice was enhanced by the presentation of the brief stimuli, even when the stimulus change signalled only elapsed time, but not the local reinforcer ratio. The effect of the brief stimulus presentations on choice decreased as a function of time since the most recent stimulus change. We compared the ability of several versions of a model of local choice to describe these data. The data were best described by a model which assumed that error in discriminating the local reinforcer ratio arose from imprecise discrimination of reinforcers in both time and space, suggesting that timing behavior is controlled not only by discrimination elapsed time, but by discrimination of the reinforcer differential in time. © Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  18. Errorless discrimination established by differential autoshaping1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkie, Donald M.; Ramer, Donald G.

    1974-01-01

    In Experiment I, pigeons exposed to a differential autoshaping procedure pecked a key in the presence of the stimulus associated with reinforcement but did not peck, or pecked infrequently, in the presence of the stimulus associated with nonreinforcement. In Experiment II, pigeons were exposed to a differential autoshaping procedure in which one stimulus was associated with reinforcement and two stimuli were associated with nonreinforcement. The birds initially responded in the presence of one stimulus associated with nonreinforcement but never responded in the presence of the second stimulus associated with nonreinforcement. They were subsequently exposed to an autoshaping procedure in which reinforcement followed both these stimuli. The number of stimulus-reinforcement pairings required to establish pecking in the presence of the stimulus during which responses had not previously occurred suggested that such stimuli are inhibitory. These findings have implications for autoshaping, errorless discrimination, inhibition, and theories of discrimination byproducts. PMID:16811797

  19. Visual awareness suppression by pre-stimulus brain stimulation; a neural effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Christianne; Goebel, Rainer; Sack, Alexander T

    2012-01-02

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has established the functional relevance of early visual cortex (EVC) for visual awareness with great temporal specificity non-invasively in conscious human volunteers. Many studies have found a suppressive effect when TMS was applied over EVC 80-100 ms after the onset of the visual stimulus (post-stimulus TMS time window). Yet, few studies found task performance to also suffer when TMS was applied even before visual stimulus presentation (pre-stimulus TMS time window). This pre-stimulus TMS effect, however, remains controversially debated and its origin had mainly been ascribed to TMS-induced eye-blinking artifacts. Here, we applied chronometric TMS over EVC during the execution of a visual discrimination task, covering an exhaustive range of visual stimulus-locked TMS time windows ranging from -80 pre-stimulus to 300 ms post-stimulus onset. Electrooculographical (EoG) recordings, sham TMS stimulation, and vertex TMS stimulation controlled for different types of non-neural TMS effects. Our findings clearly reveal TMS-induced masking effects for both pre- and post-stimulus time windows, and for both objective visual discrimination performance and subjective visibility. Importantly, all effects proved to be still present after post hoc removal of eye blink trials, suggesting a neural origin for the pre-stimulus TMS suppression effect on visual awareness. We speculate based on our data that TMS exerts its pre-stimulus effect via generation of a neural state which interacts with subsequent visual input. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. A shared system of representation governing quantity discrimination in canids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph M Baker

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available One way to investigate the evolution of cognition is to compare the abilities of phylogenetically related species. The domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris, for example, still shares cognitive abilities with the coyote (C. latrans. Both of these canids possess the ability to make psychophysical less/more discriminations of food based on quantity. Like many other species including humans, this ability is mediated by Weber’s Law: discrimination of continuous quantities is dependent on the ratio between the two quantities. As two simultaneously presented quantities of food become more similar, choice of the large or small option becomes random in both dogs and coyotes. It remains unknown, however, whether these closely related species within the same family—one domesticated, and one wild—make such quantitative comparisons with comparable accuracy. Has domestication honed or diminished this quantitative ability? Might different selective and ecological pressures facing coyotes drive them to be more or less able to accurately represent and discriminate food quantity than domesticated dogs? This study is an effort to elucidate this question concerning the evolution of non-verbal quantitative cognition.Here, we tested the quantitative discrimination ability of 16 domesticated dogs. Each animal was given 9 trials in which two different quantities of food were simultaneously displayed to them. The domesticated dogs’ performance on this task was then compared directly to the data from 16 coyotes’ performance on this same task reported by Baker and colleagues (2011.The quantitative discrimination abilities between the two species were strikingly similar. Domesticated dogs demonstrated similar quantitative sensitivity as coyotes, suggesting that domestication may not have significantly altered the psychophysical discrimination abilities of canids. Instead, this study provides further evidence for similar nonverbal quantitative abilities across

  1. Suboptimal Choice in Pigeons: Stimulus Value Predicts Choice over Frequencies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron P Smith

    Full Text Available Pigeons have shown suboptimal gambling-like behavior when preferring a stimulus that infrequently signals reliable reinforcement over alternatives that provide greater reinforcement overall. As a mechanism for this behavior, recent research proposed that the stimulus value of alternatives with more reliable signals for reinforcement will be preferred relatively independently of their frequencies. The present study tested this hypothesis using a simplified design of a Discriminative alternative that, 50% of the time, led to either a signal for 100% reinforcement or a blackout period indicative of 0% reinforcement against a Nondiscriminative alternative that always led to a signal that predicted 50% reinforcement. Pigeons showed a strong preference for the Discriminative alternative that remained despite reducing the frequency of the signal for reinforcement in subsequent phases to 25% and then 12.5%. In Experiment 2, using the original design of Experiment 1, the stimulus following choice of the Nondiscriminative alternative was increased to 75% and then to 100%. Results showed that preference for the Discriminative alternative decreased only when the signals for reinforcement for the two alternatives predicted the same probability of reinforcement. The ability of several models to predict this behavior are discussed, but the terminal link stimulus value offers the most parsimonious account of this suboptimal behavior.

  2. Psilocybin-induced stimulus control in the rat

    OpenAIRE

    Winter, J.C.; Rice, K.C.; Amorosi, D.J.; Rabin, R.A.

    2007-01-01

    Although psilocybin has been trained in the rat as a discriminative stimulus, little is known of the pharmacological receptors essential for stimulus control. In the present investigation rats were trained with psilocybin and tests were then conducted employing a series of other hallucinogens and presumed antagonists. An intermediate degree of antagonism of psilocybin was observed following treatment with the 5-HT2A receptor antagonist, M100907. In contrast, no significant antagonism was obse...

  3. Do intensity ratings and skin conductance responses reliably discriminate between different stimulus intensities in experimentally induced pain?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breimhorst, Markus; Sandrock, Stephan; Fechir, Marcel; Hausenblas, Nadine; Geber, Christian; Birklein, Frank

    2011-01-01

    The present study addresses the question whether pain-intensity ratings and skin conductance responses (SCRs) are able to detect different intensities of phasic painful stimuli and to determine the reliability of this discrimination. For this purpose, 42 healthy participants of both genders were assigned to either electrical, mechanical, or laser heat-pain stimulation (each n = 14). A whole range of single brief painful stimuli were delivered on the right volar forearm of the dominant hand in a randomized order. Pain-intensity ratings and SCRs were analyzed. Using generalizability theory, individual and gender differences were the main contributors to the variability of both intensity ratings and SCRs. Most importantly, we showed that pain-intensity ratings are a reliable measure for the discrimination of different pain stimulus intensities in the applied modalities. The reliability of SCR was adequate when mechanical and heat stimuli were tested but failed for the discrimination of electrical stimuli. Further studies are needed to reveal the reason for this lack of accuracy for SCRs when applying electrical pain stimuli. Our study could help researchers to better understand the relationship between pain and activation of the sympathetic nervous system. Pain researchers are furthermore encouraged to consider individual and gender differences when measuring pain intensity and the concomitant SCRs in experimental settings. Copyright © 2011 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Differential autoshaping to common and distinctive elements of positive and negative discriminative stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserman, E A; Anderson, P A

    1974-11-01

    The learning by hungry pigeons of a discrimination between two successively presented compound visual stimuli was investigated using a two-key autoshaping procedure. Common and distinctive stimulus elements were simultaneously presented on separate keys and either followed by food delivery, S+, or not, S-. The subjects acquired both between-trial and within-trial discriminations. On S+ trials, pigeons pecked the distinctive stimulus more than the common stimulus; before responding ceased on S- trials, they pecked the common stimulus more than the distinctive one. Mastery of the within-display discrimination during S+ trials preceded mastery of the between-trials discrimination. These findings extend the Jenkins-Sainsbury analysis of discriminations based upon a single distinguishing feature to discriminations in which common and distinctive elements are associated with both the positive and negative discriminative stimuli. The similarity of these findings to other effects found in autoshaping-approach to signals that forecast reinforcement and withdrawal from signals that forecast nonreinforcement-is also discussed.

  5. Attention and generalization during a conditional discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, G S; Limpo, A J

    1969-11-01

    A conditional discrimination was established and analyzed, using four pigeons. The discrimination was among four compound stimuli projected on the response key-a white circle or triangle on a red or green background-during two conditions of illumination in the chamber, no illumination or flashing illumination. The two lighting conditions indicated whether the stimuli on the key containing triangles or those containing red would be the occasion for reinforcement. After the discrimination formed, generalization to intermediate and extreme values of the conditional stimulus and the attention of the birds to separate aspects of the stimulus on the key under each of the conditional stimuli were studied. All subjects generalized across values of the conditional stimulus, the lighting of the chamber. But subjects differed in the manner in which they treated the compound stimuli: two tended to attend to one or the other aspect of the stimulus on the key depending on the conditional stimulus, and two offered no evidence of such selective attention. Thus, the differential control of responding by the conditional stimuli cannot be attributed to a shift in attention between the figure and ground aspects of the compound stimuli.

  6. Stimulus control: Part I

    OpenAIRE

    Dinsmoor, James A.

    1995-01-01

    In his effort to distinguish operant from respondent conditioning, Skinner stressed the lack of an eliciting stimulus and rejected the prevailing stereotype of Pavlovian “stimulus—response” psychology. But control by antecedent stimuli, whether classified as conditional or discriminative, is ubiquitous in the natural setting. With both respondent and operant behavior, symmetrical gradients of generalization along unrelated dimensions may be obtained following differential reinforcement in the...

  7. Sex differences in audiovisual discrimination learning by Bengalese finches (Lonchura striata var. domestica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seki, Yoshimasa; Okanoya, Kazuo

    2008-02-01

    Both visual and auditory information are important for songbirds, especially in developmental and sexual contexts. To investigate bimodal cognition in songbirds, the authors conducted audiovisual discrimination training in Bengalese finches. The authors used two types of stimulus: an "artificial stimulus," which is a combination of simple figures and sound, and a "biological stimulus," consisting of video images of singing males along with their songs. The authors found that while both sexes predominantly used visual cues in the discrimination tasks, males tended to be more dependent on auditory information for the biological stimulus. Female responses were always dependent on the visual stimulus for both stimulus types. Only males changed their discrimination strategy according to stimulus type. Although males used both visual and auditory cues for the biological stimulus, they responded to the artificial stimulus depending only on visual information, as the females did. These findings suggest a sex difference in innate auditory sensitivity. (c) 2008 APA.

  8. Spatio-temporal brain dynamics in a combined stimulus-stimulus and stimulus-response conflict task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frühholz, Sascha; Godde, Ben; Finke, Mareike; Herrmann, Manfred

    2011-01-01

    It is yet not well known whether different types of conflicts share common or rely on distinct brain mechanisms of conflict processing. We used a combined Flanker (stimulus-stimulus; S-S) and Simon (stimulus-response; S-R) conflict paradigm both in an fMRI and an EEG study. S-S conflicts induced stronger behavioral interference effects compared to S-R conflicts and the latter decayed with increasing response latencies. Besides some similar medial frontal activity across all conflict trials, which was, however, not statically consistent across trials, we especially found distinct activations depending on the type of conflict. S-S conflicts activated the anterior cingulate cortex and modulated the N2 and early P3 component with underlying source activity in inferior frontal cortex. S-R conflicts produced distinct activations in the posterior cingulate cortex and modulated the late P3b component with underlying source activity in superior parietal cortex. Double conflict trials containing both S-S and S-R conflicts revealed, first, distinct anterior frontal activity representing a meta-processing unit and, second, a sequential modulation of the N2 and the P3b component. The N2 modulation during double conflict trials was accompanied by increased source activity in the medial frontal gyrus (MeFG). In summary, S-S and S-R conflict processing mostly rely on distinct mechanisms of conflict processing and these conflicts differentially modulate the temporal stages of stimulus processing. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Temporal and spectral profiles of stimulus-stimulus and stimulus-response conflict processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kai; Li, Qi; Zheng, Ya; Wang, Hongbin; Liu, Xun

    2014-04-01

    The ability to detect and resolve conflict is an essential function of cognitive control. Laboratory studies often use stimulus-response-compatibility (SRC) tasks to examine conflict processing in order to elucidate the mechanism and modular organization of cognitive control. Inspired by two influential theories regarding cognitive control, the conflict monitoring theory (Botvinick, Braver, Barch, Carter, & Cohen, 2001) and dimensional overlap taxonomy (Kornblum, Hasbroucq, & Osman, 1990), we explored the temporal and spectral similarities and differences between processing of stimulus-stimulus (S-S) and stimulus-response (S-R) conflicts with event related potential (ERP) and time-frequency measures. We predicted that processing of S-S conflict starts earlier than that of S-R conflict and that the two types of conflict may involve different frequency bands. Participants were asked to perform two parallel SRC tasks, both combining the Stroop task (involving S-S conflict) and Simon task (involving S-R conflict). ERP results showed pronounced SRC effects (incongruent vs. congruent) on N2 and P3 components for both S-S and S-R conflicts. In both tasks, SRC effects of S-S conflict took place earlier than those of S-R conflict. Time-frequency analysis revealed that both types of SRC effects modulated theta and alpha bands, while S-R conflict effects additionally modulated power in the beta band. These results indicated that although S-S and S-R conflict processing shared considerable ERP and time-frequency properties, they differed in temporal and spectral dynamics. We suggest that the modular organization of cognitive control should take both commonality and distinction of S-S and S-R conflict processing into consideration. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Discriminative stimulus properties of intragastrically administered d-amphetamine and pentobarbital in rhesus monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Garza, R; Johanson, C E

    1987-12-01

    Rhesus monkeys were trained to discriminate intragastrically administered d-amphetamine (AMPH) or pentobarbital (PENTO) from saline using a signaled shock-avoidance trail procedure. All monkeys maintained criterion levels (greater than 90% drug-appropriate responding) throughout the duration of the study during training sessions. In the AMPH experiment, the anorectics diethylpropion, mazindol, phendimetrazine, phenmetrazine and phentermine completely substituted for the training dose of AMPH. The atypical antidepressant bupropion and the psychomotor stimulant methylphenidate also completely substituted for AMPH. Other anorectics including benzphetamine, clortermine, fenetylline, mefenorex and the psychomotor stimulant pemoline that share some pharmacological properties with AMPH substituted for AMPH in some, but not all, of the monkeys tested. The anorectics fenfluramine and chlorphentermine failed to substitute for AMPH. Drugs from other pharmacological classes such as morphine, diazepam, nortripyline and PENTO also failed to substitute for AMPH, indicating pharmacological specificity. In the PENTO experiment, the benzodiazepines alprazolam, bromazepam, diazepam, flurazepam, halazepam, lorazepam, midazolam, oxazepam, temazepam and triazolam and the sedatives methaqualone and phenobarbital completely substituted for the training dose of PENTO. The nonbenzodiazepine anxiolytic CL 218,872 only partially substituted for PENTO. In addition, morphine and AMPH failed to substitute for PENTO, indicating pharmacological specificity. In summary, drugs delivered intragastrically functioned as discriminative stimuli in a drug-class specific manner. The ability to use drugs delivered by this route as discriminative stimuli provides a way to compare anorectic drugs to AMPH or sedative drugs to PENTO under conditions that resemble the mode of human consumption to determine whether these drugs are likely to be associated with AMPH-like or PENTO-like drug dependence.

  11. Differential autoshaping to common and distinctive elements of positive and negative discriminative stimuli1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserman, Edward A.; Anderson, Patricia A.

    1974-01-01

    The learning by hungry pigeons of a discrimination between two successively presented compound visual stimuli was investigated using a two-key autoshaping procedure. Common and distinctive stimulus elements were simultaneously presented on separate keys and either followed by food delivery, S+, or not, S−. The subjects acquired both between-trial and within-trial discriminations. On S+ trials, pigeons pecked the distinctive stimulus more than the common stimulus; before responding ceased on S− trials, they pecked the common stimulus more than the distinctive one. Mastery of the within-display discrimination during S+ trials preceded mastery of the between-trials discrimination. These findings extend the Jenkins-Sainsbury analysis of discriminations based upon a single distinguishing feature to discriminations in which common and distinctive elements are associated with both the positive and negative discriminative stimuli. The similarity of these findings to other effects found in autoshaping—approach to signals that forecast reinforcement and withdrawal from signals that forecast nonreinforcement—is also discussed. PMID:16811812

  12. A quantitative method for determining spatial discriminative capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis Robert G

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The traditional two-point discrimination (TPD test, a widely used tactile spatial acuity measure, has been criticized as being imprecise because it is based on subjective criteria and involves a number of non-spatial cues. The results of a recent study showed that as two stimuli were delivered simultaneously, vibrotactile amplitude discrimination became worse when the two stimuli were positioned relatively close together and was significantly degraded when the probes were within a subject's two-point limen. The impairment of amplitude discrimination with decreasing inter-probe distance suggested that the metric of amplitude discrimination could possibly provide a means of objective and quantitative measurement of spatial discrimination capacity. Methods A two alternative forced-choice (2AFC tracking procedure was used to assess a subject's ability to discriminate the amplitude difference between two stimuli positioned at near-adjacent skin sites. Two 25 Hz flutter stimuli, identical except for a constant difference in amplitude, were delivered simultaneously to the hand dorsum. The stimuli were initially spaced 30 mm apart, and the inter-stimulus distance was modified on a trial-by-trial basis based on the subject's performance of discriminating the stimulus with higher intensity. The experiment was repeated via sequential, rather than simultaneous, delivery of the same vibrotactile stimuli. Results Results obtained from this study showed that the performance of the amplitude discrimination task was significantly degraded when the stimuli were delivered simultaneously and were near a subject's two-point limen. In contrast, subjects were able to correctly discriminate between the amplitudes of the two stimuli when they were sequentially delivered at all inter-probe distances (including those within the two-point limen, and improved when an adapting stimulus was delivered prior to simultaneously delivered stimuli. Conclusion

  13. Evaluation of a Multiple-Stimulus Presentation Format for Assessing Reinforcer Preferences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLeon, Iser G.; Iwata, Brian A.

    1996-01-01

    A study of seven adults with profound developmental disabilities compared methods for presenting stimuli during reinforcer-preference assessments. It found that a multiple-stimulus format in which selections were made without replacement may share the advantages of a paired-stimulus format and a multiple-stimulus format with replacement, while…

  14. Varieties of Stimulus Control in Matching-to-Sample: A Kernel Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fields, Lanny; Garruto, Michelle; Watanabe, Mari

    2010-01-01

    Conditional discrimination or matching-to-sample procedures have been used to study a wide range of complex psychological phenomena with infrahuman and human subjects. In most studies, the percentage of trials in which a subject selects the comparison stimulus that is related to the sample stimulus is used to index the control exerted by the…

  15. Discriminative stimulus properties and brain distribution of phencyclidine in rats following administration by injection and smoke inhalation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wessinger, W.D.; Martin, B.R.; Balster, R.L.

    1985-01-01

    Four male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained to discriminate IP injections of 3.0 mg/kg phencyclidine (PCP) from saline under a 2-lever fixed-ratio 32 schedule of food presentation. After reliable discriminative control of lever choice was established, other doses of injected PCP were tested resulting in dose-dependent increases in PCP-lever selection and dose-dependent decreases in rates of responding. When doses of PCP were administered by exposure to smoke from cigarettes containing PCP, a dose-dependent increase in PCP-lever responding was also observed. delta 9-Tetrahydrocannabinol administered via smoke exposure, up to doses which markedly suppressed response rates, did not result in PCP-appropriate responding, demonstrating the specificity of the PCP stimulus by the inhalation route. Brain levels and distribution of 3 H-PCP were determined in rats administered doses calculated to result in 50% generalization by the IP injection or smoke inhalation routes. By both routes of administration roughly equivalent brain levels were attained and the distribution was relatively even across the seven brain areas analyzed. These results demonstrate the validity of using the injection route of administration when studying PCP experimentally, in spite of the fact that PCP is abused primarily by smoking

  16. ASYMMETRIC EFFECTS OF ADDED VERSUS DELETED FEATURE OF STIMULUS ON RECOGNITION MEMORY

    OpenAIRE

    内野, 八潮; 箱田, 裕司

    2000-01-01

    This article reviewed a number of studies which revealed superiority of addition over deletion. Such an asymmetric effect was found in picture recognitioa memory, discrimination learning, proofreading for misspellings and so on. However, few studies have controlled typicality of original stimulus or the effect of addition and deletion on typicality of changed stimulus. Therefore this article focussed particularly on the studies in which addition and deletion applied to original stimulus was d...

  17. Spatial frequency discrimination: visual long-term memory or criterion setting?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lages, M; Treisman, M

    1998-02-01

    A long-term sensory memory is believed to account for spatial frequency discrimination when reference and test stimuli are separated by long intervals. We test an alternative proposal: that discrimination is determined by the range of test stimuli, through their entrainment of criterion-setting processes. Experiments 1 and 2 show that the 50% point of the psychometric function is largely determined by the midpoint of the stimulus range, not by the reference stimulus. Experiment 3 shows that discrimination of spatial frequencies is similarly affected by orthogonal contextual stimuli and parallel contextual stimuli and that these effects can be explained by criterion-setting processes. These findings support the hypothesis that discrimination over long intervals is explained by the operation of criterion-setting processes rather than by long-term sensory retention of a neural representation of the stimulus.

  18. The 5-HT1A Receptor and the Stimulus Effects of LSD in the Rat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reissig, C.J.; Eckler, J.R.; Rabin, R.A.; Winter, J.C.

    2005-01-01

    Rationale It has been suggested that the 5-HT1A receptor plays a significant modulatory role in the stimulus effects of the indoleamine hallucinogen lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). Objectives The present study sought to characterize the effects of several compounds with known affinity for the 5-HT1A receptor on the discriminative stimulus effects of LSD. Methods 12 Male F-344 rats were trained in a two-lever, fixed ratio10, food reinforced task with LSD (0.1 mg/kg; IP; 15 min pretreatment) as a discriminative stimulus. Combination and substitution tests with the 5-HT1A agonists, 8-OH-DPAT, buspirone, gepirone, and ipsapirone, with LSD-induced stimulus control were then performed. The effects of these 5-HT1A ligands were also tested in the presence of the selective 5-HT1A receptor antagonist, WAY-100,635 (0.3 mg/kg; SC; 30 min. pretreatment). Results In combination tests stimulus control by LSD was increased by all 5-HT1A receptor ligands with agonist properties. Similarly, in tests of antagonism, the increase in drug-appropriate responding caused by stimulation of the 5-HT1A receptor was abolished by administration of WAY-100,635. Conclusions These data, obtained using a drug discrimination model of the hallucinogenic effects of LSD, provide support for the hypothesis that the 5-HT1A receptor has a significant modulatory role in the stimulus effects of LSD. PMID:16025319

  19. Modulating wavelength discrimination in goldfish with ethambutol and stimulus intensity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sjoerdsma, T.; Kamermans, M.; Spekreijse, H.

    1996-01-01

    Wavelength discrimination in goldfish was measured behaviourally. Both acute application of ethambutol injected into the eye and chronic application by feeding the animals daily 25 mg ethambutol for 1 month had the same effect on wavelength discrimination in the range of 560-640 nm. This means that:

  20. Separate and combined effects of the cannabinoid agonists nabilone and Δ⁹-THC in humans discriminating Δ⁹-THC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lile, Joshua A; Kelly, Thomas H; Hays, Lon R

    2011-07-01

    Agonist replacement treatment is a promising strategy to manage cannabis-use disorders. The aim of this study was to assess the combined effects of the synthetic cannabinoid agonist nabilone and Δ⁹-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ⁹-THC) using drug-discrimination procedures, which are sensitive to drug interactions. Testing the concurrent administration of nabilone and Δ⁹-THC was also conducted to provide initial safety and tolerability data, which is important because cannabis users will likely lapse during treatment. Six cannabis users learned to discriminate 30 mg oral Δ⁹-THC from placebo and then received nabilone (0, 1 and 3mg) and Δ⁹-THC (0, 5, 15 and 30 mg), alone and in combination. Subjects completed the multiple-choice procedure to assess drug reinforcement, and self-report, task performance and physiological measures were collected. Δ⁹-THC and nabilone alone shared discriminative-stimulus effects with the training dose of Δ⁹-THC, increased crossover point on the multiple-choice procedure, produced overlapping subject ratings and decreased skin temperature. Nabilone alone also elevated heart rate. In combination, nabilone shifted the discriminative-stimulus effects of Δ⁹-THC leftward/upward and enhanced Δ⁹-THC effects on the other outcome measures. These results replicate a previous study demonstrating that nabilone shares agonist effects with the active constituent of cannabis in cannabis users, and contribute further by indicating that nabilone would likely be safe and well tolerated when combined with cannabis. These data support the conduct of future studies to determine if nabilone treatment would produce cross-tolerance to the abuse-related effects of cannabis and reduce cannabis use. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Sex differences in conditioned stimulus discrimination during context-dependent fear learning and its retrieval in humans: the role of biological sex, contraceptives and menstrual cycle phases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lonsdorf, Tina B; Haaker, Jan; Schümann, Dirk; Sommer, Tobias; Bayer, Janine; Brassen, Stefanie; Bunzeck, Nico; Gamer, Matthias; Kalisch, Raffael

    2015-11-01

    Anxiety disorders are more prevalent in women than in men. Despite this sexual dimorphism, most experimental studies are conducted in male participants and studies focusing on sex differences are sparse. In addition, the role of hormonal contraceptives and menstrual cycle phase in fear conditioning and extinction processes remain largely unknown. We investigated sex differences in context-dependent fear acquisition and extinction (day 1) and their retrieval/expression (day 2). Skin conductance responses (SCRs), fear and unconditioned stimulus expectancy ratings were obtained. We included 377 individuals (261 women) in our study. Robust sex differences were observed in all dependent measures. Women generally displayed higher subjective ratings but smaller SCRs than men and showed reduced excitatory/inhibitory conditioned stimulus (CS+/CS-) discrimination in all dependent measures. Furthermore, women using hormonal contraceptives showed reduced SCR CS discrimination on day 2 than men and free-cycling women, while menstrual cycle phase had no effect. Possible limitations include the simultaneous testing of up to 4 participants in cubicles, which might have introduced a social component, and not assessing postexperimental contingency awareness. The response pattern in women shows striking similarity to previously reported sex differences in patients with anxiety. Our results suggest that pronounced deficits in associative discrimination learning and subjective expression of safety information (CS- responses) might underlie higher prevalence and higher symptom rates seen in women with anxiety disorders. The data call for consideration of biological sex and hormonal contraceptive use in future studies and may suggest that targeting inhibitory learning during therapy might aid precision medicine.

  2. Conditioning procedure and color discrimination in the honeybee Apis mellifera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giurfa, Martin

    We studied the influence of the conditioning procedure on color discrimination by free-flying honeybees. We asked whether absolute and differential conditioning result in different discrimination capabilities for the same pairs of colored targets. In absolute conditioning, bees were rewarded on a single color; in differential conditioning, bees were rewarded on the same color but an alternative, non-rewarding, similar color was also visible. In both conditioning procedures, bees learned their respective task and could also discriminate the training stimulus from a novel stimulus that was perceptually different from the trained one. Discrimination between perceptually closer stimuli was possible after differential conditioning but not after absolute conditioning. Differences in attention inculcated by these training procedures may underlie the different discrimination performances of the bees.

  3. Post-stimulus endogenous and exogenous oscillations are differentially modulated by task difficulty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yun; Lou, Bin; Gao, Xiaorong; Sajda, Paul

    2013-01-01

    We investigate the modulation of post-stimulus endogenous and exogenous oscillations when a visual discrimination is made more difficult. We use exogenous frequency tagging to induce steady-state visually evoked potentials (SSVEP) while subjects perform a face-car discrimination task, the difficulty of which varies on a trial-to-trial basis by varying the noise (phase coherence) in the image. We simultaneously analyze amplitude modulations of the SSVEP and endogenous alpha activity as a function of task difficulty. SSVEP modulation can be viewed as a neural marker of attention toward/away from the primary task, while modulation of post-stimulus alpha is closely related to cortical information processing. We find that as the task becomes more difficult, the amplitude of SSVEP decreases significantly, approximately 250-450 ms post-stimulus. Significant changes in endogenous alpha amplitude follow SSVEP modulation, occurring at approximately 400-700 ms post-stimulus and, unlike the SSVEP, the alpha amplitude is increasingly suppressed as the task becomes less difficult. Our results demonstrate simultaneous measurement of endogenous and exogenous oscillations that are modulated by task difficulty, and that the specific timing of these modulations likely reflects underlying information processing flow during perceptual decision-making.

  4. Fluoxetine, a selective inhibitor of serotonin uptake, potentiates morphine analgesia without altering its discriminative stimulus properties or affinity for opioid receptors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hynes, M.D.; Lochner, M.A.; Bemis, K.G.; Hymson, D.L.

    1985-01-01

    The analgesic effect of morphine in the rat tail jerk assay was enhanced by the serotonin uptake inhibitor, fluoxetine. Tail jerk latency was not affected by fluoxetine alone. Morphine's affinity for opioid receptors labeled in vitro with 3 H-naloxone or 3 H-D-Ala 2 -D-Leu 5 -enkephalin was not altered by fluoxetine, which has no affinity for these sites at concentrations as high as 1000 nM. In rats trained to discriminate morphine from saline, fluoxetine at doses of 5 or 10 mg/kg were recognized as saline. Increasing the fluoxetine dose to 20 mg/kg did not result in generalization to either saline or morphine. The dose response curve for morphine generalization was not significantly altered by fluoxetine doses of 5 or 10 mg/kg. Those rats treated with the combination of morphine and 20 mg/kg of fluoxetine did not exhibit saline or morphine appropriate responding. Fluoxetine potentiates the analgesic properties of morphine without enhancing its affinity for opioid receptors or its discriminative stimulus properties. 30 references, 2 figures, 2 tables

  5. Rational-emotive behavior therapy and the formation of stimulus equivalence classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plaud, J J; Gaither, G A; Weller, L A; Bigwood, S J; Barth, J; von Duvillard, S P

    1998-08-01

    Stimulus equivalence is a behavioral approach to analyzing the "meaning" of stimulus sets and has an implication for clinical psychology. The formation of three-member (A --> B --> C) stimulus equivalence classes was used to investigate the effects of three different sets of sample and comparison stimuli on emergent behavior. The three stimulus sets were composed of Rational-Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT)-related words, non-REBT emotionally charged words, and a third category of neutral words composed of flower labels. Sixty-two women and men participated in a modified matching-to-sample experiment. Using a mixed cross-over design, and controlling for serial order effects, participants received conditional training and emergent relationship training in the three stimulus set conditions. Results revealed a significant interaction between the formation of stimulus equivalence classes and stimulus meaning, indicating consistently biased responding in favor of reaching criterion responding more slowly for REBT-related and non-REBT emotionally charged words. Results were examined in the context of an analysis of the importance of stimulus meaning on behavior and the relation of stimulus meaning to behavioral and cognitive theories, with special appraisal given to the influence of fear-related discriminative stimuli on behavior.

  6. Response-Retrieval in Identity Negative Priming is Modulated by Temporal Discriminability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias eMittner

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Reaction times to previously ignored information are often delayed, a phenomenon referred to as negative priming (NP. Rothermund, Wentura & De Houwer (2005 proposed that negative priming is caused by the retrieval of incidental stimulus-response associations when consecutive displays share visual features but require different responses. In two experiments we examined whether the features (color, shape that reappear in consecutive displays, or their level of processing (early-perceptual, late-semantic moderate the likelihood that stimulus-response associations are retrieved. Using a perceptual matching task (experiment 1, negative priming occurred independently of whether responses were repeated or switched. Only when implementing a semantic-matching task (experiment 2, negative priming was determined by response-repetition as predicted by response-retrieval theory. The results can be explained in terms of a task-dependent temporal discrimination process (Milliken et al., 1998: Response-relevant features are encoded more strongly and/or are more likely to be retrieved than irrelevant features.

  7. Near-field visual acuity of pigeons: effects of head location and stimulus luminance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodos, W; Leibowitz, R W; Bonbright, J C

    1976-03-01

    Two pigeons were trained to discriminate a grating stimulus from a blank stimulus of equivalent luminance in a three-key chamber. The stimuli and blanks were presented behind a transparent center key. The procedure was a conditional discrimination in which pecks on the left key were reinforced if the blank had been present behind the center key and pecks on the right key were reinforced if the grating had been present behind the center key. The spatial frequency of the stimuli was varied in each session from four to 29.5 lines per millimeter in accordance with a variation of the method of constant stimuli. The number of lines per millimeter that the subjects could discriminate at threshold was determined from psychometric functions. Data were collected at five values of stimulus luminance ranging from--0.07 to 3.29 log cd/m2. The distance from the stimulus to the anterior nodal point of the eye, which was determined from measurements taken from high-speed motion-picture photographs of three additional pigeons and published intraocular measurements, was 62.0 mm. This distance and the grating detection thresholds were used to calculate the visual acuity of the birds at each level of luminance. Acuity improved with increasing luminance to a peak value of 0.52, which corresponds to a visual angle of 1.92 min, at a luminance of 2.33 log cd/m2. Further increase in luminance produced a small decline in acuity.

  8. Spatial frequency discrimination : visual long-term memory or criterion setting?

    OpenAIRE

    1998-01-01

    A long-term sensory memory is believed to account for spatial frequency discrimination when reference and test stimuli are separated by long intervals. We test an alternative proposal: that discrimination is determined by the range of test stimuli, through their entrainment of criterion-setting processes. Experiments 1 and 2 show that the 50% point of the psychometric function is largely determined by the midpoint of the stimulus range, not by the reference stimulus. Experiment 3 shows that d...

  9. Autoshaping with common and distinctive stimulus elements, compact and dispersed arrays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sperling, S E; Perkins, M E

    1979-05-01

    Four groups of pigeons were trained with a standard autoshaping procedure in which a brief fixed-duration interval always followed by a grain delivery alternated with a longer variable-duration interval never associated with grain delivery. One of two stimuli was always presented during each interval. One of them contained three black dots and a black star on a green background; the other contained four black dots on a green background. The four elements of each stimulus were arranged in a more compact array for two groups and in a more dispersed array for the other two groups. Which of the two stimuli preceded grain delivery was counterbalanced within each pair of groups. The speed of occurrence of the first autoshaped peck was not affected by whether the stimulus containing the distinctive star element preceded grain delivery, but autoshaping was faster when the stimulus arrays were compact than when they were dispersed. During 560 response-independent training trials that followed the first autoshaped peck, this pattern reversed; both discriminative control over responding and the relative frequency of pecking the stimulus that preceded grain delivery were greater for the two groups where this stimulus contained the discriminative element than for the two groups where it contained only common elements. During subsequent testing with stimuli containing only a single element each, the distinctive feature was responded to proportionately more often by the two groups for which it had been an element of the stimulus preceding grain delivery than by the two groups for which it had been an element of the stimulus complex that never was associated with grain delivery. These data add further support to the hypothesis that the initial occurrence of autoshaped responding and its subsequent maintenance are not affected by the same variables. They also suggest that automaintenance is as sensitive as response-dependent training to the presence or absence of a distinctive

  10. Visual training improves perceptual grouping based on basic stimulus features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurylo, Daniel D; Waxman, Richard; Kidron, Rachel; Silverstein, Steven M

    2017-10-01

    Training on visual tasks improves performance on basic and higher order visual capacities. Such improvement has been linked to changes in connectivity among mediating neurons. We investigated whether training effects occur for perceptual grouping. It was hypothesized that repeated engagement of integration mechanisms would enhance grouping processes. Thirty-six participants underwent 15 sessions of training on a visual discrimination task that required perceptual grouping. Participants viewed 20 × 20 arrays of dots or Gabor patches and indicated whether the array appeared grouped as vertical or horizontal lines. Across trials stimuli became progressively disorganized, contingent upon successful discrimination. Four visual dimensions were examined, in which grouping was based on similarity in luminance, color, orientation, and motion. Psychophysical thresholds of grouping were assessed before and after training. Results indicate that performance in all four dimensions improved with training. Training on a control condition, which paralleled the discrimination task but without a grouping component, produced no improvement. In addition, training on only the luminance and orientation dimensions improved performance for those conditions as well as for grouping by color, on which training had not occurred. However, improvement from partial training did not generalize to motion. Results demonstrate that a training protocol emphasizing stimulus integration enhanced perceptual grouping. Results suggest that neural mechanisms mediating grouping by common luminance and/or orientation contribute to those mediating grouping by color but do not share resources for grouping by common motion. Results are consistent with theories of perceptual learning emphasizing plasticity in early visual processing regions.

  11. Simultaneous Inhibition of Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase and Monoacylglycerol Lipase Shares Discriminative Stimulus Effects with Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Hruba, Lenka; Seillier, Alexandre; Zaki, Armia; Cravatt, Benjamin F.; Lichtman, Aron H.; Giuffrida, Andrea; McMahon, Lance R.

    2015-01-01

    Monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) and fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitors exert preclinical effects indicative of therapeutic potential (i.e., analgesia). However, the extent to which MAGL and FAAH inhibitors produce unwanted effects remains unclear. Here, FAAH and MAGL inhibition was examined separately and together in a Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC; 5.6 mg/kg i.p.) discrimination assay predictive of subjective effects associated with cannabis use, and the relative contribution of N...

  12. Psilocybin-induced stimulus control in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, J C; Rice, K C; Amorosi, D J; Rabin, R A

    2007-10-01

    Although psilocybin has been trained in the rat as a discriminative stimulus, little is known of the pharmacological receptors essential for stimulus control. In the present investigation rats were trained with psilocybin and tests were then conducted employing a series of other hallucinogens and presumed antagonists. An intermediate degree of antagonism of psilocybin was observed following treatment with the 5-HT(2A) receptor antagonist, M100907. In contrast, no significant antagonism was observed following treatment with the 5-HT(1A/7) receptor antagonist, WAY-100635, or the DA D(2) antagonist, remoxipride. Psilocybin generalized fully to DOM, LSD, psilocin, and, in the presence of WAY-100635, DMT while partial generalization was seen to 2C-T-7 and mescaline. LSD and MDMA partially generalized to psilocybin and these effects were completely blocked by M-100907; no generalization of PCP to psilocybin was seen. The present data suggest that psilocybin induces a compound stimulus in which activity at the 5-HT(2A) receptor plays a prominent but incomplete role. In addition, psilocybin differs from closely related hallucinogens such as 5-MeO-DMT in that agonism at 5-HT(1A) receptors appears to play no role in psilocybin-induced stimulus control.

  13. Autoshaping with common and distinctive stimulus elements, compact and dispersed arrays1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sperling, Sally E.; Perkins, Mark E.

    1979-01-01

    Four groups of pigeons were trained with a standard autoshaping procedure in which a brief fixed-duration interval always followed by a grain delivery alternated with a longer variable-duration interval never associated with grain delivery. One of two stimuli was always presented during each interval. One of them contained three black dots and a black star on a green background; the other contained four black dots on a green background. The four elements of each stimulus were arranged in a more compact array for two groups and in a more dispersed array for the other two groups. Which of the two stimuli preceded grain delivery was counterbalanced within each pair of groups. The speed of occurrence of the first autoshaped peck was not affected by whether the stimulus containing the distinctive star element preceded grain delivery, but autoshaping was faster when the stimulus arrays were compact than when they were dispersed. During 560 response-independent training trials that followed the first autoshaped peck, this pattern reversed; both discriminative control over responding and the relative frequency of pecking the stimulus that preceded grain delivery were greater for the two groups where this stimulus contained the discriminative element than for the two groups where it contained only common elements. During subsequent testing with stimuli containing only a single element each, the distinctive feature was responded to proportionately more often by the two groups for which it had been an element of the stimulus preceding grain delivery than by the two groups for which it had been an element of the stimulus complex that never was associated with grain delivery. These data add further support to the hypothesis that the initial occurrence of autoshaped responding and its subsequent maintenance are not affected by the same variables. They also suggest that automaintenance is as sensitive as response-dependent training to the presence or absence of a distinctive

  14. Task-irrelevant emotion facilitates face discrimination learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzino, Martina; Caudek, Corrado

    2015-03-01

    We understand poorly how the ability to discriminate faces from one another is shaped by visual experience. The purpose of the present study is to determine whether face discrimination learning can be facilitated by facial emotions. To answer this question, we used a task-irrelevant perceptual learning paradigm because it closely mimics the learning processes that, in daily life, occur without a conscious intention to learn and without an attentional focus on specific facial features. We measured face discrimination thresholds before and after training. During the training phase (4 days), participants performed a contrast discrimination task on face images. They were not informed that we introduced (task-irrelevant) subtle variations in the face images from trial to trial. For the Identity group, the task-irrelevant features were variations along a morphing continuum of facial identity. For the Emotion group, the task-irrelevant features were variations along an emotional expression morphing continuum. The Control group did not undergo contrast discrimination learning and only performed the pre-training and post-training tests, with the same temporal gap between them as the other two groups. Results indicate that face discrimination improved, but only for the Emotion group. Participants in the Emotion group, moreover, showed face discrimination improvements also for stimulus variations along the facial identity dimension, even if these (task-irrelevant) stimulus features had not been presented during training. The present results highlight the importance of emotions for face discrimination learning. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Discrepancy between stimulus response and tolerance of pain in Alzheimer disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen-Dahm, Christina; Werner, Mads U; Jensen, Troels Staehelin

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Affective-motivational and sensory-discriminative aspects of pain were investigated in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer disease (AD) and healthy elderly controls using the cold pressor test tolerance and repetitive stimuli of warmth and heat stimuli, evaluating the stimulus....... The results further suggest that the attenuated cold pressor pain tolerance may relate to impairment of coping abilities. Paradoxically, we found an attenuated stimulus-response function, compared to controls, suggesting that AD dementia interferes with pain ratings over time, most likely due to memory...

  16. Human Drug Discrimination: Elucidating the Neuropharmacology of Commonly Abused Illicit Drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolin, B Levi; Alcorn, Joseph L; Reynolds, Anna R; Lile, Joshua A; Stoops, William W; Rush, Craig R

    2016-06-07

    Drug-discrimination procedures empirically evaluate the control that internal drug states have over behavior. They provide a highly selective method to investigate the neuropharmacological underpinnings of the interoceptive effects of drugs in vivo. As a result, drug discrimination has been one of the most widely used assays in the field of behavioral pharmacology. Drug-discrimination procedures have been adapted for use with humans and are conceptually similar to preclinical drug-discrimination techniques in that a behavior is differentially reinforced contingent on the presence or absence of a specific interoceptive drug stimulus. This chapter provides a basic overview of human drug-discrimination procedures and reviews the extant literature concerning the use of these procedures to elucidate the underlying neuropharmacological mechanisms of commonly abused illicit drugs (i.e., stimulants, opioids, and cannabis) in humans. This chapter is not intended to review every available study that used drug-discrimination procedures in humans. Instead, when possible, exemplary studies that used a stimulant, opioid, or Δ 9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (the primary psychoactive constituent of cannabis) to assess the discriminative-stimulus effects of drugs in humans are reviewed for illustrative purposes. We conclude by commenting on the current state and future of human drug-discrimination research.

  17. Spatiotemporal Relationships among Audiovisual Stimuli Modulate Auditory Facilitation of Visual Target Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qi; Yang, Huamin; Sun, Fang; Wu, Jinglong

    2015-03-01

    Sensory information is multimodal; through audiovisual interaction, task-irrelevant auditory stimuli tend to speed response times and increase visual perception accuracy. However, mechanisms underlying these performance enhancements have remained unclear. We hypothesize that task-irrelevant auditory stimuli might provide reliable temporal and spatial cues for visual target discrimination and behavioral response enhancement. Using signal detection theory, the present study investigated the effects of spatiotemporal relationships on auditory facilitation of visual target discrimination. Three experiments were conducted where an auditory stimulus maintained reliable temporal and/or spatial relationships with visual target stimuli. Results showed that perception sensitivity (d') to visual target stimuli was enhanced only when a task-irrelevant auditory stimulus maintained reliable spatiotemporal relationships with a visual target stimulus. When only reliable spatial or temporal information was contained, perception sensitivity was not enhanced. These results suggest that reliable spatiotemporal relationships between visual and auditory signals are required for audiovisual integration during a visual discrimination task, most likely due to a spread of attention. These results also indicate that auditory facilitation of visual target discrimination follows from late-stage cognitive processes rather than early stage sensory processes. © 2015 SAGE Publications.

  18. Sex and the stimulus-movement effect: Differences in acquisition of autoshaped responding in cynomolgus monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Nathaniel C; Makar, Jennifer R; Myers, Todd M

    2017-03-15

    The stimulus-movement effect refers to the phenomenon in which stimulus discrimination or acquisition of a response is facilitated by moving stimuli as opposed to stationary stimuli. The effect has been found in monkeys, rats, and humans, but the experiments conducted did not provide adequate female representation to investigate potential sex differences. The current experiment analyzed acquisition of stimulus touching in a progressive series of classical conditioning procedures in cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) as a function of sex and stimulus movement. Classical conditioning tasks arrange two or more stimuli in relation to each other with different temporal and predictive relations. Autoshaping procedures overlay operant contingencies onto a classical-conditioning stimulus arrangement. In the present case, a neutral stimulus (a small gray square displayed on a touchscreen) functioned as the conditional stimulus and a food pellet functioned as the unconditional stimulus. Although touching is not required to produce food, with repeated stimulus pairings subjects eventually touch the stimulus. Across conditions of increasing stimulus correlation and temporal contiguity, male monkeys acquired the response faster with a moving stimulus. In contrast, females acquired the response faster with a stationary stimulus. These results demonstrate that the stimulus-movement effect may be differentially affected by sex and indicate that additional experiments with females are needed to determine how sex interacts with behavioral phenomena discovered and elaborated almost exclusively using males. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  19. Spatial layout affects speed discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verghese, P.; Stone, L. S.

    1997-01-01

    We address a surprising result in a previous study of speed discrimination with multiple moving gratings: discrimination thresholds decreased when the number of stimuli was increased, but remained unchanged when the area of a single stimulus was increased [Verghese & Stone (1995). Vision Research, 35, 2811-2823]. In this study, we manipulated the spatial- and phase relationship between multiple grating patches to determine their effect on speed discrimination thresholds. In a fusion experiment, we merged multiple stimulus patches, in stages, into a single patch. Thresholds increased as the patches were brought closer and their phase relationship was adjusted to be consistent with a single patch. Thresholds increased further still as these patches were fused into a single patch. In a fission experiment, we divided a single large patch into multiple patches by superimposing a cross with luminance equal to that of the background. Thresholds decreased as the large patch was divided into quadrants and decreased further as the quadrants were maximally separated. However, when the cross luminance was darker than the background, it was perceived as an occluder and thresholds, on average, were unchanged from that for the single large patch. A control experiment shows that the observed trend in discrimination thresholds is not due to the differences in perceived speed of the stimuli. These results suggest that the parsing of the visual image into entities affects the combination of speed information across space, and that each discrete entity effectively provides a single independent estimate of speed.

  20. Citric Acid and Quinine Share Perceived Chemosensory Features Making Oral Discrimination Difficult in C57BL/6J Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treesukosol, Yada; Mathes, Clare M.

    2011-01-01

    Evidence in the literature shows that in rodents, some taste-responsive neurons respond to both quinine and acid stimuli. Also, under certain circumstances, rodents display some degree of difficulty in discriminating quinine and acid stimuli. Here, C57BL/6J mice were trained and tested in a 2-response operant discrimination task. Mice had severe difficulty discriminating citric acid from quinine and 6-n-propylthiouracil (PROP) with performance slightly, but significantly, above chance. In contrast, mice were able to competently discriminate sucrose from citric acid, NaCl, quinine, and PROP. In another experiment, mice that were conditioned to avoid quinine by pairings with LiCl injections subsequently suppressed licking responses to quinine and citric acid but not to NaCl or sucrose in a brief-access test, relative to NaCl-injected control animals. However, mice that were conditioned to avoid citric acid did not display cross-generalization to quinine. These mice significantly suppressed licking only to citric acid, and to a much lesser extent NaCl, compared with controls. Collectively, the findings from these experiments suggest that in mice, citric acid and quinine share chemosensory features making discrimination difficult but are not perceptually identical. PMID:21421543

  1. Subcortical plasticity following perceptual learning in a pitch discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carcagno, Samuele; Plack, Christopher J

    2011-02-01

    Practice can lead to dramatic improvements in the discrimination of auditory stimuli. In this study, we investigated changes of the frequency-following response (FFR), a subcortical component of the auditory evoked potentials, after a period of pitch discrimination training. Twenty-seven adult listeners were trained for 10 h on a pitch discrimination task using one of three different complex tone stimuli. One had a static pitch contour, one had a rising pitch contour, and one had a falling pitch contour. Behavioral measures of pitch discrimination and FFRs for all the stimuli were measured before and after the training phase for these participants, as well as for an untrained control group (n = 12). Trained participants showed significant improvements in pitch discrimination compared to the control group for all three trained stimuli. These improvements were partly specific for stimuli with the same pitch modulation (dynamic vs. static) and with the same pitch trajectory (rising vs. falling) as the trained stimulus. Also, the robustness of FFR neural phase locking to the sound envelope increased significantly more in trained participants compared to the control group for the static and rising contour, but not for the falling contour. Changes in FFR strength were partly specific for stimuli with the same pitch modulation (dynamic vs. static) of the trained stimulus. Changes in FFR strength, however, were not specific for stimuli with the same pitch trajectory (rising vs. falling) as the trained stimulus. These findings indicate that even relatively low-level processes in the mature auditory system are subject to experience-related change.

  2. The Honolulu posttraumatic stress disorder stimulus set.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chemtob, C M; Roitblat, H L; Hamada, R S; Carlson, J G; Muraoka, M Y; Bauer, G B

    1997-04-01

    We present word and picture stimuli constituting a validated stimulus set appropriate for cognitive investigations of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Combat related and neutral words and pictures were rated by Vietnam veterans with PTSD and by three comparison groups along four dimensions: unpleasantness, Vietnam relevance, stressfulness, and memorability. There were distinctive patterns of responses by the PTSD group which efficiently discriminated the individuals in this group from those in the control groups. These stimuli have the potential to be developed as a diagnostic instrument.

  3. Drug states as modulators of conditioned immobility in a latent discrimination procedure.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maes, J.H.R.; Rijn, C.M. van; Vossen, J.M.H.

    1996-01-01

    Midazolam, amphetamine, and flesinoxan were used in four rat experiments to examine the usefulness of a latent Pavlovian discrimination procedure to assess the discriminative-stimulus, or occasion-setting, properties of drugs. Experiment 1 first assessed the unconditioned effect of each of the drugs

  4. Real-time detection and discrimination of visual perception using electrocorticographic signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapeller, C.; Ogawa, H.; Schalk, G.; Kunii, N.; Coon, W. G.; Scharinger, J.; Guger, C.; Kamada, K.

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Several neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that the ventral temporal cortex contains specialized regions that process visual stimuli. This study investigated the spatial and temporal dynamics of electrocorticographic (ECoG) responses to different types and colors of visual stimulation that were presented to four human participants, and demonstrated a real-time decoder that detects and discriminates responses to untrained natural images. Approach. ECoG signals from the participants were recorded while they were shown colored and greyscale versions of seven types of visual stimuli (images of faces, objects, bodies, line drawings, digits, and kanji and hiragana characters), resulting in 14 classes for discrimination (experiment I). Additionally, a real-time system asynchronously classified ECoG responses to faces, kanji and black screens presented via a monitor (experiment II), or to natural scenes (i.e. the face of an experimenter, natural images of faces and kanji, and a mirror) (experiment III). Outcome measures in all experiments included the discrimination performance across types based on broadband γ activity. Main results. Experiment I demonstrated an offline classification accuracy of 72.9% when discriminating among the seven types (without color separation). Further discrimination of grey versus colored images reached an accuracy of 67.1%. Discriminating all colors and types (14 classes) yielded an accuracy of 52.1%. In experiment II and III, the real-time decoder correctly detected 73.7% responses to face, kanji and black computer stimuli and 74.8% responses to presented natural scenes. Significance. Seven different types and their color information (either grey or color) could be detected and discriminated using broadband γ activity. Discrimination performance maximized for combined spatial-temporal information. The discrimination of stimulus color information provided the first ECoG-based evidence for color-related population

  5. Discriminality of statistically independent Gaussian noise tokens and random tone-burst complexes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Goossens, T.L.J.; Par, van de S.L.J.D.E.; Kohlrausch, A.G.; Kollmeier, B.; Klump, G.; Hohmann, V.; Langemann, U.; Mauermann, M.; Uppenkamp, S.; Verhey, J.

    2007-01-01

    Hanna (1984) has shown that noise tokens with a duration of 400 ms are harder to discriminate than noise tokens of 100 ms. This is remarkable because a 400-ms stimulus potentially contains four times as much information for judging dissimilarity than the 100-ms stimulus. Apparently, the ability to

  6. Hippocampal theta activity is selectively associated with contingency detection but not discrimination in rabbit discrimination-reversal eyeblink conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nokia, Miriam S; Wikgren, Jan

    2010-04-01

    The relative power of the hippocampal theta-band ( approximately 6 Hz) activity (theta ratio) is thought to reflect a distinct neural state and has been shown to affect learning rate in classical eyeblink conditioning in rabbits. We sought to determine if the theta ratio is mostly related to the detection of the contingency between the stimuli used in conditioning or also to the learning of more complex inhibitory associations when a highly demanding delay discrimination-reversal eyeblink conditioning paradigm is used. A high hippocampal theta ratio was not only associated with a fast increase in conditioned responding in general but also correlated with slow emergence of discriminative responding due to sustained responding to the conditioned stimulus not paired with an unconditioned stimulus. The results indicate that the neural state reflected by the hippocampal theta ratio is specifically linked to forming associations between stimuli rather than to the learning of inhibitory associations needed for successful discrimination. This is in line with the view that the hippocampus is responsible for contingency detection in the early phase of learning in eyeblink conditioning. (c) 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  7. Can Collateral Behavior Account for Transitions in the Stimulus Control of Speech?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, David C.

    2017-01-01

    The task of extending Skinner's (1957) interpretation of verbal behavior includes accounting for the moment-to-moment changes in stimulus control as one speaks. A consideration of the behavior of the reader reminds us of the continuous evocative effect of verbal stimuli on readers, listeners, and speakers. Collateral discriminative responses to…

  8. Antagonism of a (+)N-allylnormetazocine stimulus by (-)PPAP and several structurally related analogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glennon, R A; Young, R; Herndon, J L

    1993-08-01

    Employing rats trained to discriminate 5 mg/kg of the benzomorphan opioid (+)N-allylnormetazocine [(+)NANM] from vehicle, tests of stimulus generalization and antagonism were conducted to determine the influence of several potential sigma-receptor ligands. It has been previously suggested that the (+)NANM stimulus may involve concurrent action at sigma- and phencyclidine (PCP) receptors. Although the low-affinity sigma-antagonist rimcazole was without stimulus-attenuating effect, three novel sigma-ligands--(-)PPAP, CNS 3018, and CNS 3093 (ID50 doses = 3.2, 6.7, and 4.5 mg/kg, respectively)--antagonized the (+)NANM stimulus in a dose-related fashion. The nonselective serotonergic agent 1-(3-trifluoromethyl)phenylpiperazine (TFMPP) produced partial generalization in (+)NANM-trained animals whereas buspirone, a 5-hydroxytryptamine1A (5-HT1A) agonist, attenuated (to 27% drug-appropriate responding) the (+)NANM stimulus. Because the prototypic 5-HT1A agonist 8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin (8-OH-DPAT) failed to attenuate the (+)NANM stimulus at pharmacologically relevant doses, it seems unlikely that the (+)NANM stimulus involves a 5-HT1A mechanism. TFMPP and buspirone display modest affinity for sigma-receptors and this may account for the present findings with these agents. The present results neither establish a role for sigma involvement in the stimulus properties of (+)NANM nor eliminate a role for PCP receptors. They do, however, demonstrate that sigma-ligands with little to no affinity for PCP receptors are capable of antagonizing the (+)NANM stimulus.

  9. Influence of Spatial and Chromatic Noise on Luminance Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miquilini, Leticia; Walker, Natalie A; Odigie, Erika A; Guimarães, Diego Leite; Salomão, Railson Cruz; Lacerda, Eliza Maria Costa Brito; Cortes, Maria Izabel Tentes; de Lima Silveira, Luiz Carlos; Fitzgerald, Malinda E C; Ventura, Dora Fix; Souza, Givago Silva

    2017-12-05

    Pseudoisochromatic figures are designed to base discrimination of a chromatic target from a background solely on the chromatic differences. This is accomplished by the introduction of luminance and spatial noise thereby eliminating these two dimensions as cues. The inverse rationale could also be applied to luminance discrimination, if spatial and chromatic noise are used to mask those cues. In this current study estimate of luminance contrast thresholds were conducted using a novel stimulus, based on the use of chromatic and spatial noise to mask the use of these cues in a luminance discrimination task. This was accomplished by presenting stimuli composed of a mosaic of circles colored randomly. A Landolt-C target differed from the background only by the luminance. The luminance contrast thresholds were estimated for different chromatic noise saturation conditions and compared to luminance contrast thresholds estimated using the same target in a non-mosaic stimulus. Moreover, the influence of the chromatic content in the noise on the luminance contrast threshold was also investigated. Luminance contrast threshold was dependent on the chromaticity noise strength. It was 10-fold higher than thresholds estimated from non-mosaic stimulus, but they were independent of colour space location in which the noise was modulated. The present study introduces a new method to investigate luminance vision intended for both basic science and clinical applications.

  10. Carving Executive Control at Its Joints: Working Memory Capacity Predicts Stimulus-Stimulus, but Not Stimulus-Response, Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Matt E.; Kane, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Three experiments examined the relation between working memory capacity (WMC) and 2 different forms of cognitive conflict: stimulus-stimulus (S-S) and stimulus-response (S-R) interference. Our goal was to test whether WMC's relation to conflict-task performance is mediated by stimulus-identification processes (captured by S-S conflict),…

  11. Optimal Experimental Design for Model Discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myung, Jay I.; Pitt, Mark A.

    2009-01-01

    Models of a psychological process can be difficult to discriminate experimentally because it is not easy to determine the values of the critical design variables (e.g., presentation schedule, stimulus structure) that will be most informative in differentiating them. Recent developments in sampling-based search methods in statistics make it…

  12. Price discrimination in two-sided markets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Zhang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The use of a price discrimination strategy is an important tool in competition. It can hurt firms and benefit consumers in a one-sided market. However, in two-sided markets, its primary goal is to attract more agents or increase profits. Here, the performance of a second-degree price discrimination strategy in the context of duopoly two-sided platforms is analysed. Two exogenous variables, which include the discount rate and the price discrimination threshold, are used in order to examine whether the price discrimination strategy could help two-sided platforms achieve their objective, which is to maximise their market value. Three cases are considered, and we demonstrate that the price discrimination strategy cannot attract more agents and at the same time increase the profits; a lower price discrimination threshold cannot ensure larger markets shares; a higher discount rate is detrimental to the profit of a platform. However, this is good for its market shares. Moreover, discriminative pricing increases the competition.

  13. Discrimination Performance in Aging Is Vulnerable to Interference and Dissociable from Spatial Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sarah A.; Sacks, Patricia K.; Turner, Sean M.; Gaynor, Leslie S.; Ormerod, Brandi K.; Maurer, Andrew P.; Bizon, Jennifer L.; Burke, Sara N.

    2016-01-01

    Hippocampal-dependent episodic memory and stimulus discrimination abilities are both compromised in the elderly. The reduced capacity to discriminate between similar stimuli likely contributes to multiple aspects of age-related cognitive impairment; however, the association of these behaviors within individuals has never been examined in an animal…

  14. Food approach conditioning and discrimination learning using sound cues in benthic sharks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vila Pouca, Catarina; Brown, Culum

    2018-07-01

    The marine environment is filled with biotic and abiotic sounds. Some of these sounds predict important events that influence fitness while others are unimportant. Individuals can learn specific sound cues and 'soundscapes' and use them for vital activities such as foraging, predator avoidance, communication and orientation. Most research with sounds in elasmobranchs has focused on hearing thresholds and attractiveness to sound sources, but very little is known about their abilities to learn about sounds, especially in benthic species. Here we investigated if juvenile Port Jackson sharks could learn to associate a musical stimulus with a food reward, discriminate between two distinct musical stimuli, and whether individual personality traits were linked to cognitive performance. Five out of eight sharks were successfully conditioned to associate a jazz song with a food reward delivered in a specific corner of the tank. We observed repeatable individual differences in activity and boldness in all eight sharks, but these personality traits were not linked to the learning performance assays we examined. These sharks were later trained in a discrimination task, where they had to distinguish between the same jazz and a novel classical music song, and swim to opposite corners of the tank according to the stimulus played. The sharks' performance to the jazz stimulus declined to chance levels in the discrimination task. Interestingly, some sharks developed a strong side bias to the right, which in some cases was not the correct side for the jazz stimulus.

  15. Discriminality of statistically independent Gaussian noise tokens and random tone-burst complexes

    OpenAIRE

    Goossens, T.L.J.; Par, van de, S.L.J.D.E.; Kohlrausch, A.G.; Kollmeier, B.; Klump, G.; Hohmann, V.; Langemann, U.; Mauermann, M.; Uppenkamp, S.; Verhey, J.

    2007-01-01

    Hanna (1984) has shown that noise tokens with a duration of 400 ms are harder to discriminate than noise tokens of 100 ms. This is remarkable because a 400-ms stimulus potentially contains four times as much information for judging dissimilarity than the 100-ms stimulus. Apparently, the ability to use all information in a stimulus is impaired by some kind of limitation, e.g. a memory limitation (cf. Cowan 2000) or a limitation in the ability to allocate attentional resources (cf. Kidd and Wat...

  16. Dissociable contributions of the orbitofrontal and infralimbic cortex to pavlovian autoshaping and discrimination reversal learning: further evidence for the functional heterogeneity of the rodent frontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chudasama, Y; Robbins, Trevor W

    2003-09-24

    To examine possible heterogeneity of function within the ventral regions of the rodent frontal cortex, the present study compared the effects of excitotoxic lesions of the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and the infralimbic cortex (ILC) on pavlovian autoshaping and discrimination reversal learning. During the pavlovian autoshaping task, in which rats learn to approach a stimulus predictive of reward [conditional stimulus (CS+)], only the OFC group failed to acquire discriminated approach but was unimpaired when preoperatively trained. In the visual discrimination learning and reversal task, rats were initially required to discriminate a stimulus positively associated with reward. There was no effect of either OFC or ILC lesions on discrimination learning. When the stimulus-reward contingencies were reversed, both groups of animals committed more errors, but only the OFC-lesioned animals were unable to suppress the previously rewarded stimulus-reward association, committing more "stimulus perseverative" errors. In contrast, the ILC group showed a pattern of errors that was more attributable to "learning" than perseveration. These findings suggest two types of dissociation between the effects of OFC and ILC lesions: (1) OFC lesions impaired the learning processes implicated in pavlovian autoshaping but not instrumental simultaneous discrimination learning, whereas ILC lesions were unimpaired at autoshaping and their reversal learning deficit did not reflect perseveration, and (2) OFC lesions induced perseverative responding in reversal learning but did not disinhibit responses to pavlovian CS-. In contrast, the ILC lesion had no effect on response inhibitory control in either of these settings. The findings are discussed in the context of dissociable executive functions in ventral sectors of the rat prefrontal cortex.

  17. A Preliminary Investigation of Stimulus Control Training for Worry: Effects on Anxiety and Insomnia

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGowan, Sarah Kate; Behar, Evelyn

    2013-01-01

    For individuals with generalized anxiety disorder, worry becomes associated with numerous aspects of life (e.g., time of day, specific stimuli, environmental cues) and is thus under poor discriminative stimulus control (SC). In addition, excessive worry is associated with anxiety, depressed mood, and sleep difficulties. This investigation sought…

  18. Separating discriminative and function-altering effects of verbal stimuli

    OpenAIRE

    Schlinger, Henry D.

    1993-01-01

    Ever since Skinner's first discussion of rule-governed behavior, behavior analysts have continued to define rules, either explicitly or implicitly, as verbal discriminative stimuli. Consequently, it is not difficult to find, in the literature on rule-governed behavior, references to stimulus control, antecedent control, or to rules occasioning behavior. However, some verbal stimuli have effects on behavior that are not easily described as discriminative. Such stimuli don't evoke behavior as d...

  19. The effects of context and musical training on auditory temporal-interval discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banai, Karen; Fisher, Shirley; Ganot, Ron

    2012-02-01

    Non sensory factors such as stimulus context and musical experience are known to influence auditory frequency discrimination, but whether the context effect extends to auditory temporal processing remains unknown. Whether individual experiences such as musical training alter the context effect is also unknown. The goal of the present study was therefore to investigate the effects of stimulus context and musical experience on auditory temporal-interval discrimination. In experiment 1, temporal-interval discrimination was compared between fixed context conditions in which a single base temporal interval was presented repeatedly across all trials and variable context conditions in which one of two base intervals was randomly presented on each trial. Discrimination was significantly better in the fixed than in the variable context conditions. In experiment 2 temporal discrimination thresholds of musicians and non-musicians were compared across 3 conditions: a fixed context condition in which the target interval was presented repeatedly across trials, and two variable context conditions differing in the frequencies used for the tones marking the temporal intervals. Musicians outperformed non-musicians on all 3 conditions, but the effects of context were similar for the two groups. Overall, it appears that, like frequency discrimination, temporal-interval discrimination benefits from having a fixed reference. Musical experience, while improving performance, did not alter the context effect, suggesting that improved discrimination skills among musicians are probably not an outcome of more sensitive contextual facilitation or predictive coding mechanisms. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Pigeons can discriminate "good" and "bad" paintings by children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Shigeru

    2010-01-01

    Humans have the unique ability to create art, but non-human animals may be able to discriminate "good" art from "bad" art. In this study, I investigated whether pigeons could be trained to discriminate between paintings that had been judged by humans as either "bad" or "good". To do this, adult human observers first classified several children's paintings as either "good" (beautiful) or "bad" (ugly). Using operant conditioning procedures, pigeons were then reinforced for pecking at "good" paintings. After the pigeons learned the discrimination task, they were presented with novel pictures of both "good" and "bad" children's paintings to test whether they had successfully learned to discriminate between these two stimulus categories. The results showed that pigeons could discriminate novel "good" and "bad" paintings. Then, to determine which cues the subjects used for the discrimination, I conducted tests of the stimuli when the paintings were of reduced size or grayscale. In addition, I tested their ability to discriminate when the painting stimuli were mosaic and partial occluded. The pigeons maintained discrimination performance when the paintings were reduced in size. However, discrimination performance decreased when stimuli were presented as grayscale images or when a mosaic effect was applied to the original stimuli in order to disrupt spatial frequency. Thus, the pigeons used both color and pattern cues for their discrimination. The partial occlusion did not disrupt the discriminative behavior suggesting that the pigeons did not attend to particular parts, namely upper, lower, left or right half, of the paintings. These results suggest that the pigeons are capable of learning the concept of a stimulus class that humans name "good" pictures. The second experiment showed that pigeons learned to discriminate watercolor paintings from pastel paintings. The subjects showed generalization to novel paintings. Then, as the first experiment, size reduction test

  1. I-sharing promotes social connectedness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bel, van D.T.; Smolders, K.C.H.J.; IJsselsteijn, W.A.; Kort, de Y.A.W.

    2009-01-01

    The current study demonstrates that I-sharing promotes social connectedness, a key outcome of mediated interaction. This implies that mobile communication applications, which provide the sense of having the same subjective experience as another person in response to a given stimulus may specifically

  2. The poverty of the stimulus: Quine and Wittgenstein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O’Sullivan Michael

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Quine and Wittgenstein were dominant figures in philosophy in the middle of the twentieth century. Many readers, like Quine himself, have felt that there are deep similarities between the two thinkers, though those similarities are difficult to articulate. I argue that they share the project of understanding the meaning of utterances by reference to the environment of the speaker, though they understand that environment in radically different ways. In particular, Quine has a much thinner conception of the environment than does Wittgenstein. For Quine, the stimulus is impoverished in a way that it is not for Wittgenstein. I also argue that they share a certain deflationary approach to ontology.

  3. Role of amygdala central nucleus in feature negative discriminations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holland, Peter C.

    2012-01-01

    Consistent with a popular theory of associative learning, the Pearce-Hall (1980) model, the surprising omission of expected events enhances cue associability (the ease with which a cue may enter into new associations), across a wide variety of behavioral training procedures. Furthermore, previous experiments from this laboratory showed that these enhancements are absent in rats with impaired function of the amygdala central nucleus (CeA). A notable exception to these assertions is found in feature negative (FN) discrimination learning, in which a “target” stimulus is reinforced when it is presented alone but nonreinforced when it is presented in compound with another, “feature” stimulus. According to the Pearce-Hall model, reinforcer omission on compound trials should enhance the associability of the feature relative to control training conditions. However, prior experiments have shown no evidence that CeA lesions affect FN discrimination learning. Here we explored this apparent contradiction by evaluating the hypothesis that the surprising omission of an event confers enhanced associability on a cue only if that cue itself generates the disconfirmed prediction. Thus, in a FN discrimination, the surprising omission of the reinforcer on compound trials would enhance the associability of the target stimulus but not that of the feature. Our data confirmed this hypothesis, and showed this enhancement to depend on intact CeA function, as in other procedures. The results are consistent with modern reformulations of both cue and reward processing theories that assign roles for both individual and aggregate error terms in associative learning. PMID:22889308

  4. Speed and accuracy of visual image discrimination by rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela eReinagel

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The trade-off between speed and accuracy of sensory discrimination has most often been studying using sensory stimuli that evolve over time, such as random dot motion discrimination tasks. We previously reported that when rats perform motion discrimination, correct trials have longer reaction times than errors, accuracy increases with reaction time, and reaction time increases with stimulus ambiguity. In such experiments, new sensory information is continually presented, which could partly explain interactions between reaction time and accuracy. The present study shows that a changing physical stimulus is not essential to those findings. Freely behaving rats were trained to discriminate between two static visual images in a self-paced, 2-alternative forced-choice (2AFC reaction time task. Each trial was initiated by the rat, and the two images were presented simultaneously and persisted until the rat responded, with no time limit. Reaction times were longer in correct trials than in error trials, and accuracy increased with reaction time, comparable to results previously reported for rats performing motion discrimination. In the motion task, coherence has been used to vary discrimination difficulty. Here morphs between the previously learned images were used to parametrically vary the image similarity. In randomly interleaved trials, rats took more time on average to respond in trials in which they had to discriminate more similar stimuli. For both the motion and image tasks, the dependence of reaction time on ambiguity is weak, as if rats prioritized speed over accuracy. Therefore we asked whether rats can change the priority of speed and accuracy adaptively in response to a change in reward contingencies. For two rats, the penalty delay was increased from two to six seconds. When the penalty was longer, reaction times increased, and accuracy improved. This demonstrates that rats can flexibly adjust their behavioral strategy in response to the

  5. On the role of trial types in tests for stimulus equivalence

    OpenAIRE

    Eilifsen, Christoffer; Arntzen, Erik

    2011-01-01

    Some studies which have shown that differences in outcome on tests for stimulus equivalence dependent on different training structures, have run the tests as separate blocks without baseline trials interspersed in between test trials. Saunders and co-workers have argued that the differences in test outcome could be related to differences in the retention of trained discriminations during testing (R. R. Saunders, Drake, & Spradlin, 1999; R. R. Saunders & Green, 1999). In the current experiment...

  6. Impaired odour discrimination on desynchronization of odour-encoding neural assemblies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stopfer, Mark; Bhagavan, Seetha; Smith, Brian H.; Laurent, Gilles

    1997-11-01

    Stimulus-evoked oscillatory synchronization of neural assemblies has been described in the olfactory and visual systems of several vertebrates and invertebrates. In locusts, information about odour identity is contained in the timing of action potentials in an oscillatory population response, suggesting that oscillations may reflect a common reference for messages encoded in time. Although the stimulus-evoked oscillatory phenomenon is reliable, its roles in sensation, perception, memory formation and pattern recognition remain to be demonstrated - a task requiring a behavioural paradigm. Using honeybees, we now demonstrate that odour encoding involves, as it does in locusts, the oscillatory synchronization of assemblies of projection neurons and that this synchronization is also selectively abolished by picrotoxin, an antagonist of the GABAA (γ-aminobutyric acid) receptor. By using a behavioural learning paradigm, we show that picrotoxin-induced desynchronization impairs the discrimination of molecularly similar odorants, but not that of dissimilar odorants. It appears, therefore, that oscillatory synchronization of neuronal assemblies is functionally relevant, and essential for fine sensory discrimination. This suggests that oscillatory synchronization and the kind of temporal encoding it affords provide an additional dimension by which the brain could segment spatially overlapping stimulus representations.

  7. Concentrated pitch discrimination modulates auditory brainstem responses during contralateral noise exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikeda, Kazunari; Sekiguchi, Takahiro; Hayashi, Akiko

    2010-03-31

    This study examined a notion that auditory discrimination is a requisite for attention-related modulation of the auditory brainstem response (ABR) during contralateral noise exposure. Given that the right ear was exposed continuously with white noise at an intensity of 60-80 dB sound pressure level, tone pips at 80 dB sound pressure level were delivered to the left ear through either single-stimulus or oddball procedures. Participants conducted reading (ignoring task) and counting target tones (attentive task) during stimulation. The oddball but not the single-stimulus procedures elicited task-related modulations in both early (ABR) and late (processing negativity) event-related potentials simultaneously. The elicitation of the attention-related ABR modulation during contralateral noise exposure is thus considered to require auditory discrimination and have the corticofugal nature evidently.

  8. Genetic pleiotropy explains associations between musical auditory discrimination and intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosing, Miriam A; Pedersen, Nancy L; Madison, Guy; Ullén, Fredrik

    2014-01-01

    Musical aptitude is commonly measured using tasks that involve discrimination of different types of musical auditory stimuli. Performance on such different discrimination tasks correlates positively with each other and with intelligence. However, no study to date has explored these associations using a genetically informative sample to estimate underlying genetic and environmental influences. In the present study, a large sample of Swedish twins (N = 10,500) was used to investigate the genetic architecture of the associations between intelligence and performance on three musical auditory discrimination tasks (rhythm, melody and pitch). Phenotypic correlations between the tasks ranged between 0.23 and 0.42 (Pearson r values). Genetic modelling showed that the covariation between the variables could be explained by shared genetic influences. Neither shared, nor non-shared environment had a significant effect on the associations. Good fit was obtained with a two-factor model where one underlying shared genetic factor explained all the covariation between the musical discrimination tasks and IQ, and a second genetic factor explained variance exclusively shared among the discrimination tasks. The results suggest that positive correlations among musical aptitudes result from both genes with broad effects on cognition, and genes with potentially more specific influences on auditory functions.

  9. The pigeon's discrimination of visual entropy: a logarithmic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Michael E; Wasserman, Edward A

    2002-11-01

    We taught 8 pigeons to discriminate 16-icon arrays that differed in their visual variability or "entropy" to see whether the relationship between entropy and discriminative behavior is linear (in which equivalent differences in entropy should produce equivalent changes in behavior) or logarithmic (in which higher entropy values should be less discriminable from one another than lower entropy values). Pigeons received a go/no-go task in which the lower entropy arrays were reinforced for one group and the higher entropy arrays were reinforced for a second group. The superior discrimination of the second group was predicted by a theoretical analysis in which excitatory and inhibitory stimulus generalization gradients fall along a logarithmic, but not a linear scale. Reanalysis of previously published data also yielded results consistent with a logarithmic relationship between entropy and discriminative behavior.

  10. Stimulus-specific variability in color working memory with delayed estimation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Gi-Yeul; Olkkonen, Maria; Allred, Sarah R; Wilson, Colin; Flombaum, Jonathan I

    2014-04-08

    Working memory for color has been the central focus in an ongoing debate concerning the structure and limits of visual working memory. Within this area, the delayed estimation task has played a key role. An implicit assumption in color working memory research generally, and delayed estimation in particular, is that the fidelity of memory does not depend on color value (and, relatedly, that experimental colors have been sampled homogeneously with respect to discriminability). This assumption is reflected in the common practice of collapsing across trials with different target colors when estimating memory precision and other model parameters. Here we investigated whether or not this assumption is secure. To do so, we conducted delayed estimation experiments following standard practice with a memory load of one. We discovered that different target colors evoked response distributions that differed widely in dispersion and that these stimulus-specific response properties were correlated across observers. Subsequent experiments demonstrated that stimulus-specific responses persist under higher memory loads and that at least part of the specificity arises in perception and is eventually propagated to working memory. Posthoc stimulus measurement revealed that rendered stimuli differed from nominal stimuli in both chromaticity and luminance. We discuss the implications of these deviations for both our results and those from other working memory studies.

  11. Dorsolateral Striatum Engagement Interferes with Early Discrimination Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hadley C. Bergstrom

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Summary: In current models, learning the relationship between environmental stimuli and the outcomes of actions involves both stimulus-driven and goal-directed systems, mediated in part by the DLS and DMS, respectively. However, though these models emphasize the importance of the DLS in governing actions after extensive experience has accumulated, there is growing evidence of DLS engagement from the onset of training. Here, we used in vivo photosilencing to reveal that DLS recruitment interferes with early touchscreen discrimination learning. We also show that the direct output pathway of the DLS is preferentially recruited and causally involved in early learning and find that silencing the normal contribution of the DLS produces plasticity-related alterations in a PL-DMS circuit. These data provide further evidence suggesting that the DLS is recruited in the construction of stimulus-elicited actions that ultimately automate behavior and liberate cognitive resources for other demands, but with a cost to performance at the outset of learning. : What is the contribution of the DLS in early discrimination learning? Bergstrom et al. show using in vivo optogenetics, fluorescence in situ hybridization, and brain-wide activity mapping that silencing the DLS facilitates early discrimination learning, drives activity in a parallel PL-DMS circuit, and preferentially recruits the DLS “direct” output pathway. Keywords: striatum, reward, goal-directed, habit, optogenetics, plasticity, cognition, Arc

  12. Post-training depletions of basolateral amygdala serotonin fail to disrupt discrimination, retention, or reversal learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Jesus eOchoa

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available In goal-directed pursuits, the basolateral amygdala (BLA is critical in learning about changes in the value of rewards. BLA-lesioned rats show enhanced reversal learning, a task employed to measure the flexibility of response to changes in reward. Similarly, there is a trend for enhanced discrimination learning, suggesting that BLA may modulate formation of stimulus-reward associations. There is a parallel literature on the importance of serotonin (5HT in new stimulus-reward and reversal learning. Recent postulations implicate 5HT in learning from punishment. Whereas dopaminergic involvement is critical in behavioral activation and reinforcement, 5HT may be most critical for aversive processing and behavioral inhibition, complementary cognitive processes. Given these findings, a 5HT-mediated mechanism in BLA may mediate the facilitated learning observed previously. The present study investigated the effects of selective 5HT lesions in BLA using 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine (5,7-DHT versus infusions of saline (Sham on discrimination, retention, and deterministic reversal learning. Rats were required to reach an 85% correct pairwise discrimination and single reversal criterion prior to surgery. Postoperatively, rats were then tested on the 1 retention of the pretreatment discrimination pair 2 discrimination of a novel pair and 3 reversal learning performance. We found statistically comparable preoperative learning rates between groups, intact postoperative retention, and unaltered novel discrimination and reversal learning in 5,7-DHT rats. These findings suggest that 5HT in BLA is not required for formation and flexible adjustment of new stimulus-reward associations when the strategy to efficiently solve the task has already been learned. Given the complementary role of orbitofrontal cortex in reward learning and its interconnectivity with BLA, these findings add to the list of dissociable mechanisms for BLA and orbitofrontal cortex in reward learning.

  13. The Effects of Different Training Structures in the Establishment of Conditional Discriminations and Subsequent Performance on Tests for Stimulus Equivalence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arntzen, Erik; Grondahl, Terje; Eilifsen, Christoffer

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies comparing groups of subjects have indicated differential probabilities of stimulus equivalence outcome as a function of training structures. One-to-Many (OTM) and Many-to-One (MTO) training structures seem to produce positive outcomes on tests for stimulus equivalence more often than a Linear Series (LS) training structure does.…

  14. A history of alternative reinforcement reduces stimulus generalization of ethanol-seeking in a rat recovery model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginsburg, Brett C.; Lamb, R. J.

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND Longer periods of recovery reduce the likelihood of relapse, which may be due to a reduced ability of various stimuli to occasion alcohol or drug seeking. However, this hypothesis remains largely uninvestigated. METHODS Here we assessed the ability of intermediate stimuli to occasion responding for ethanol in rats trained to discriminate an 8kHz tone signaling a food fixed-ratio (FR) of 5 and an ethanol FR5, from a 16kHz tone signaling a food FR150 and ethanol FR5. In the presence of the 8kHz tone responding for food predominates, and in the presence of the 16 kHz tone, responding for ethanol predominates. RESULTS In the context of alternation between these conditions, varying the tone from 8 to 16kHz produces a graded increase in ethanol (versus food) responding, consistent with a stimulus generalization function. A recent history of responding under food-predominant choice conditions, either during the test session or in the four sessions that precede it shifts the generalization function downwards. Extending this history to nine sessions shifts the curve further downwards. The stimulus generalization function was similar in a separate group, trained with different relative ratios for food and ethanol, but with similar behavioral allocation under each discriminative stimulus. Finally, withholding access to food and ethanol for 4 or 16 sessions did not affect the stimulus generalization gradient. CONCLUSION These results suggest that longer histories of reinforced alternative behavior might reduce the likelihood of relapse by decreasing the control exerted over alcohol- or drug-seeking by stimuli similar to those that previously occasioned alcohol- or drug-seeking. PMID:23122598

  15. Spatiotemporal discrimination in neural networks with short-term synaptic plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shlaer, Benjamin; Miller, Paul

    2015-03-01

    Cells in recurrently connected neural networks exhibit bistability, which allows for stimulus information to persist in a circuit even after stimulus offset, i.e. short-term memory. However, such a system does not have enough hysteresis to encode temporal information about the stimuli. The biophysically described phenomenon of synaptic depression decreases synaptic transmission strengths due to increased presynaptic activity. This short-term reduction in synaptic strengths can destabilize attractor states in excitatory recurrent neural networks, causing the network to move along stimulus dependent dynamical trajectories. Such a network can successfully separate amplitudes and durations of stimuli from the number of successive stimuli. Stimulus number, duration and intensity encoding in randomly connected attractor networks with synaptic depression. Front. Comput. Neurosci. 7:59., and so provides a strong candidate network for the encoding of spatiotemporal information. Here we explicitly demonstrate the capability of a recurrent neural network with short-term synaptic depression to discriminate between the temporal sequences in which spatial stimuli are presented.

  16. Temporal characteristics of gustatory responses in rat parabrachial neurons vary by stimulus and chemosensitive neuron type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geran, Laura; Travers, Susan

    2013-01-01

    It has been demonstrated that temporal features of spike trains can increase the amount of information available for gustatory processing. However, the nature of these temporal characteristics and their relationship to different taste qualities and neuron types are not well-defined. The present study analyzed the time course of taste responses from parabrachial (PBN) neurons elicited by multiple applications of "sweet" (sucrose), "salty" (NaCl), "sour" (citric acid), and "bitter" (quinine and cycloheximide) stimuli in an acute preparation. Time course varied significantly by taste stimulus and best-stimulus classification. Across neurons, the ensemble code for the three electrolytes was similar initially but quinine diverged from NaCl and acid during the second 500 ms of stimulation and all four qualities became distinct just after 1s. This temporal evolution was reflected in significantly broader tuning during the initial response. Metric space analyses of quality discrimination by individual neurons showed that increases in information (H) afforded by temporal factors was usually explained by differences in rate envelope, which had a greater impact during the initial 2s (22.5% increase in H) compared to the later response (9.5%). Moreover, timing had a differential impact according to cell type, with between-quality discrimination in neurons activated maximally by NaCl or citric acid most affected. Timing was also found to dramatically improve within-quality discrimination (80% increase in H) in neurons that responded optimally to bitter stimuli (B-best). Spikes from B-best neurons were also more likely to occur in bursts. These findings suggest that among PBN taste neurons, time-dependent increases in mutual information can arise from stimulus- and neuron-specific differences in response envelope during the initial dynamic period. A stable rate code predominates in later epochs.

  17. Auditory velocity discrimination in the horizontal plane at very high velocities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frissen, Ilja; Féron, François-Xavier; Guastavino, Catherine

    2014-10-01

    We determined velocity discrimination thresholds and Weber fractions for sounds revolving around the listener at very high velocities. Sounds used were a broadband white noise and two harmonic sounds with fundamental frequencies of 330 Hz and 1760 Hz. Experiment 1 used velocities ranging between 288°/s and 720°/s in an acoustically treated room and Experiment 2 used velocities between 288°/s and 576°/s in a highly reverberant hall. A third experiment addressed potential confounds in the first two experiments. The results show that people can reliably discriminate velocity at very high velocities and that both thresholds and Weber fractions decrease as velocity increases. These results violate Weber's law but are consistent with the empirical trend observed in the literature. While thresholds for the noise and 330 Hz harmonic stimulus were similar, those for the 1760 Hz harmonic stimulus were substantially higher. There were no reliable differences in velocity discrimination between the two acoustical environments, suggesting that auditory motion perception at high velocities is robust against the effects of reverberation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Discriminative stimuli that control instrumental tobacco-seeking by human smokers also command selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogarth, Lee; Dickinson, Anthony; Duka, Theodora

    2003-08-01

    Incentive salience theory states that acquired bias in selective attention for stimuli associated with tobacco-smoke reinforcement controls the selective performance of tobacco-seeking and tobacco-taking behaviour. To support this theory, we assessed whether a stimulus that had acquired control of a tobacco-seeking response in a discrimination procedure would command the focus of visual attention in a subsequent test phase. Smokers received discrimination training in which an instrumental key-press response was followed by tobacco-smoke reinforcement when one visual discriminative stimulus (S+) was present, but not when another stimulus (S-) was present. The skin conductance response to the S+ and S- assessed whether Pavlovian conditioning to the S+ had taken place. In a subsequent test phase, the S+ and S- were presented in the dot-probe task and the allocation of the focus of visual attention to these stimuli was measured. Participants learned to perform the instrumental tobacco-seeking response selectively in the presence of the S+ relative to the S-, and showed a greater skin conductance response to the S+ than the S-. In the subsequent test phase, participants allocated the focus of visual attention to the S+ in preference to the S-. Correlation analysis revealed that the visual attentional bias for the S+ was positively associated with the number of times the S+ had been paired with tobacco-smoke in training, the skin conductance response to the S+ and with subjective craving to smoke. Furthermore, increased exposure to tobacco-smoke in the natural environment was associated with reduced discrimination learning. These data demonstrate that discriminative stimuli that signal that tobacco-smoke reinforcement is available acquire the capacity to command selective attentional and elicit instrumental tobacco-seeking behaviour.

  19. Abstract numerical discrimination learning in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taniuchi, Tohru; Sugihara, Junko; Wakashima, Mariko; Kamijo, Makiko

    2016-06-01

    In this study, we examined rats' discrimination learning of the numerical ordering positions of objects. In Experiments 1 and 2, five out of seven rats successfully learned to respond to the third of six identical objects in a row and showed reliable transfer of this discrimination to novel stimuli after being trained with three different training stimuli. In Experiment 3, the three rats from Experiment 2 continued to be trained to respond to the third object in an object array, which included an odd object that needed to be excluded when identifying the target third object. All three rats acquired this selective-counting task of specific stimuli, and two rats showed reliable transfer of this selective-counting performance to test sets of novel stimuli. In Experiment 4, the three rats from Experiment 3 quickly learned to respond to the third stimulus in object rows consisting of either six identical or six different objects. These results offer strong evidence for abstract numerical discrimination learning in rats.

  20. Stimulus properties of nicotine, amphetamine, and chlordiazepoxide as positive features in a pavlovian appetitive discrimination task in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmatier, Matthew I; Wilkinson, Jamie L; Metschke, Dawn M; Bevins, Rick A

    2005-04-01

    Recent experiments from our laboratory have demonstrated that drug states can signal when environmental cues will be followed by rewarding outcomes (ie Pavlovian conditioning). However, little is known about the generality of this approach and whether it can be used for studying the pharmacological properties of drug states. Accordingly, the present experiments tested the pharmacological specificity of nicotine (0.4 mg/kg), amphetamine (1 mg/kg), and chlordiazepoxide (CDP, 5 mg/kg) in this Pavlovian drug discrimination procedure. Following drug administration, presentation of a conditional stimulus (CS) was followed by brief access to sucrose. When saline was administered, the same CS was presented but sucrose was withheld. In substitution tests, rats in each condition received varying doses of all training drugs and caffeine. Anticipatory food seeking developed during the CS on drug sessions but not on saline sessions for all drug features (ie drug state-specific conditional response (CR)). In generalization tests, this CR decreased as a function of decreases in the training dose. Median effective doses (ED50s) were calculated for nicotine (0.054 mg/kg), amphetamine (0.26 mg/kg), and CDP (2.48 mg/kg). No compound tested substituted for the CDP training drug. Partial substitution was evident between nicotine and amphetamine; CDP did not substitute for either of these drug features. Caffeine fully substituted for nicotine (ED50 = 15.45 mg/kg) and amphetamine (ED50 = 3.70 mg/kg), but not for CDP. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that drug states can occasion appetitive Pavlovian CRs in a pharmacologically specific manner.

  1. Effects of dopamine D1-like and D2-like antagonists on cocaine discrimination in muscarinic receptor knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomsen, Morgane; Caine, Simon Barak

    2016-04-05

    Muscarinic and dopamine brain systems interact intimately, and muscarinic receptor ligands, like dopamine ligands, can modulate the reinforcing and discriminative stimulus (S(D)) effects of cocaine. To enlighten the dopamine/muscarinic interactions as they pertain to the S(D) effects of cocaine, we evaluated whether muscarinic M1, M2 or M4 receptors are necessary for dopamine D1 and/or D2 antagonist mediated modulation of the S(D) effects of cocaine. Knockout mice lacking M1, M2, or M4 receptors, as well as control wild-type mice and outbred Swiss-Webster mice, were trained to discriminate 10mg/kg cocaine from saline in a food-reinforced drug discrimination procedure. Effects of pretreatments with the dopamine D1 antagonist SCH 23390 and the dopamine D2 antagonist eticlopride were evaluated. In intact mice, both SCH 23390 and eticlopride attenuated the cocaine discriminative stimulus effect, as expected. SCH 23390 similarly attenuated the cocaine discriminative stimulus effect in M1 knockout mice, but not in mice lacking M2 or M4 receptors. The effects of eticlopride were comparable in each knockout strain. These findings demonstrate differences in the way that D1 and D2 antagonists modulate the S(D) effects of cocaine, D1 modulation being at least partially dependent upon activity at the inhibitory M2/M4 muscarinic subtypes, while D2 modulation appeared independent of these systems. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Contextual control of discriminated operant behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouton, Mark E; Todd, Travis P; León, Samuel P

    2014-01-01

    Previous research has suggested that changing the context after instrumental (operant) conditioning can weaken the strength of the operant response. That result contrasts with the results of studies of Pavlovian conditioning, in which a context switch often does not affect the response elicited by a conditioned stimulus. To begin to make the methods more similar, Experiments 1-3 tested the effects of a context switch in rats on a discriminated operant response (R; lever pressing or chain pulling) that had been reinforced only in the presence of a 30-s discriminative stimulus (S; tone or light). As in Pavlovian conditioning, responses and reinforcers became confined to presentations of the S during training. However, in Experiment 1, after training in Context A, a switch to Context B caused a decrement in responding during S. In Experiment 2, a switch to Context B likewise decreased responding in S when Context B was equally familiar, equally associated with reinforcement, or equally associated with the training of a discriminated operant (a different R reinforced in a different S). However, there was no decrement if Context B had been associated with the same response that was trained in Context A (Experiments 2 and 3). The effectiveness of S transferred across contexts, whereas the strength of the response did not. Experiment 4 found that a continuously reinforced response was also disrupted by context change when the same response manipulandum was used in both training and testing. Overall, the results suggest that the context can have a robust general role in the control of operant behavior. Mechanisms of contextual control are discussed.

  3. Preliminary evidence of a neurophysiological basis for individual discrimination in filial imprinting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Town, Stephen Michael

    2011-12-01

    Filial imprinting involves a predisposition for biologically important stimuli and a learning process directing preferences towards a particular stimulus. Learning underlies discrimination between imprinted and unfamiliar individuals and depends upon the IMM (intermediate and medial mesopallium). Here, IMM neurons responded differentially to familiar and unfamiliar conspecifics following socialization and the neurophysiological effects of social experience differed between hemispheres. Such findings may provide a neurophysiological basis for individual discrimination in imprinting. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Haptic Discrimination of Distance

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Beek, Femke E.; Bergmann Tiest, Wouter M.; Kappers, Astrid M. L.

    2014-01-01

    While quite some research has focussed on the accuracy of haptic perception of distance, information on the precision of haptic perception of distance is still scarce, particularly regarding distances perceived by making arm movements. In this study, eight conditions were measured to answer four main questions, which are: what is the influence of reference distance, movement axis, perceptual mode (active or passive) and stimulus type on the precision of this kind of distance perception? A discrimination experiment was performed with twelve participants. The participants were presented with two distances, using either a haptic device or a real stimulus. Participants compared the distances by moving their hand from a start to an end position. They were then asked to judge which of the distances was the longer, from which the discrimination threshold was determined for each participant and condition. The precision was influenced by reference distance. No effect of movement axis was found. The precision was higher for active than for passive movements and it was a bit lower for real stimuli than for rendered stimuli, but it was not affected by adding cutaneous information. Overall, the Weber fraction for the active perception of a distance of 25 or 35 cm was about 11% for all cardinal axes. The recorded position data suggest that participants, in order to be able to judge which distance was the longer, tried to produce similar speed profiles in both movements. This knowledge could be useful in the design of haptic devices. PMID:25116638

  5. Haptic discrimination of distance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Femke E van Beek

    Full Text Available While quite some research has focussed on the accuracy of haptic perception of distance, information on the precision of haptic perception of distance is still scarce, particularly regarding distances perceived by making arm movements. In this study, eight conditions were measured to answer four main questions, which are: what is the influence of reference distance, movement axis, perceptual mode (active or passive and stimulus type on the precision of this kind of distance perception? A discrimination experiment was performed with twelve participants. The participants were presented with two distances, using either a haptic device or a real stimulus. Participants compared the distances by moving their hand from a start to an end position. They were then asked to judge which of the distances was the longer, from which the discrimination threshold was determined for each participant and condition. The precision was influenced by reference distance. No effect of movement axis was found. The precision was higher for active than for passive movements and it was a bit lower for real stimuli than for rendered stimuli, but it was not affected by adding cutaneous information. Overall, the Weber fraction for the active perception of a distance of 25 or 35 cm was about 11% for all cardinal axes. The recorded position data suggest that participants, in order to be able to judge which distance was the longer, tried to produce similar speed profiles in both movements. This knowledge could be useful in the design of haptic devices.

  6. Mecamylamine, dihydro-β-erythroidine, and dextromethorphan block conditioned responding evoked by the conditional stimulus effects of nicotine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struthers, Amanda M.; Wilkinson, Jamie L.; Dwoskin, Linda P.; Crooks, Peter A.; Bevins, Rick A.

    2009-01-01

    Current smokers express the desire to quit. However, the majority find it difficult to remain abstinent. As such, research efforts continually seek to develop more effective treatment. One such area of research involves the interoceptive stimulus effects of nicotine as either a discriminative stimulus in an operant drug discrimination task, or more recently as a conditional stimulus (CS) in a discriminated goal-tracking task. The present work investigated the potential role nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the CS effects of nicotine (0.4 mg/kg) using antagonists with differential selectivity for β2*, α7*, α6β2*, and α3β4* receptors. Methyllycaconitine (MLA) had no effect on nicotine-evoked conditioned responding. Mecamylamine and dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) dose dependently blocked responding evoked by the nicotine CS. In a time-course assessment of mecamylamine and DHβE, each blocked conditioned responding when given 5 min before testing and still blocked conditioned responding when administered 200 min before testing. Two novel bis-picolinium analogs (N, N’-(3, 3′-(dodecan-1,12-diyl)-bis-picolinium dibromide [bPiDDB], and N, N’-(decan-1,10-diyl)-bis-picolinium diiodide [bPiDI]) did not block nicotine-evoked conditioned responding. Finally, pretreatment with low dose combinations of mecamylamine, dextromethorphan, and/or bupropion were used to target α3β4* receptors. No combination blocked conditioned responding evoked by the training dose of nicotine. However, a combination of mecamylamine and dextromethorphan partially blocked nicotine-evoked conditioned responding to a lower dose of nicotine (0.1 mg/kg). These results indicate that β2* and potentially α3β4* nicotinic acetylcholine receptors play a role in the CS effects of nicotine and are potential targets for the development of nicotine cessation aids. PMID:19778551

  7. Pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus lesions impair stimulus--reward learning in autoshaping and conditioned reinforcement paradigms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inglis, W L; Olmstead, M C; Robbins, T W

    2000-04-01

    The role of the pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus (PPTg) in stimulus-reward learning was assessed by testing the effects of PPTg lesions on performance in visual autoshaping and conditioned reinforcement (CRf) paradigms. Rats with PPTg lesions were unable to learn an association between a conditioned stimulus (CS) and a primary reward in either paradigm. In the autoshaping experiment, PPTg-lesioned rats approached the CS+ and CS- with equal frequency, and the latencies to respond to the two stimuli did not differ. PPTg lesions also disrupted discriminated approaches to an appetitive CS in the CRf paradigm and completely abolished the acquisition of responding with CRf. These data are discussed in the context of a possible cognitive function of the PPTg, particularly in terms of lesion-induced disruptions of attentional processes that are mediated by the thalamus.

  8. Conditional discrimination learning: A critique and amplification

    OpenAIRE

    Schrier, Allan M.; Thompson, Claudia R.

    1980-01-01

    Carter and Werner recently reviewed the literature on conditional discrimination learning by pigeons, which consists of studies of matching-to-sample and oddity-from-sample. They also discussed three models of such learning: the “multiple-rule” model (learning of stimulus-specific relations), the “configuration” model, and the “single-rule” model (concept learning). Although their treatment of the multiple-rule model, which seems most applicable to the pigeon data, is generally excellent, the...

  9. Continuous- and Discrete-Time Stimulus Sequences for High Stimulus Rate Paradigm in Evoked Potential Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Wang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available To obtain reliable transient auditory evoked potentials (AEPs from EEGs recorded using high stimulus rate (HSR paradigm, it is critical to design the stimulus sequences of appropriate frequency properties. Traditionally, the individual stimulus events in a stimulus sequence occur only at discrete time points dependent on the sampling frequency of the recording system and the duration of stimulus sequence. This dependency likely causes the implementation of suboptimal stimulus sequences, sacrificing the reliability of resulting AEPs. In this paper, we explicate the use of continuous-time stimulus sequence for HSR paradigm, which is independent of the discrete electroencephalogram (EEG recording system. We employ simulation studies to examine the applicability of the continuous-time stimulus sequences and the impacts of sampling frequency on AEPs in traditional studies using discrete-time design. Results from these studies show that the continuous-time sequences can offer better frequency properties and improve the reliability of recovered AEPs. Furthermore, we find that the errors in the recovered AEPs depend critically on the sampling frequencies of experimental systems, and their relationship can be fitted using a reciprocal function. As such, our study contributes to the literature by demonstrating the applicability and advantages of continuous-time stimulus sequences for HSR paradigm and by revealing the relationship between the reliability of AEPs and sampling frequencies of the experimental systems when discrete-time stimulus sequences are used in traditional manner for the HSR paradigm.

  10. Discriminating the stimulus elements during human odor-taste learning: a successful analytic stance does not eliminate learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevenson, Richard J; Mahmut, Mehmet K

    2011-10-01

    Odor "sweetness" may arise from experiencing odors and tastes together, resulting in a flavor memory that is later reaccessed by the odor. Forming a flavor memory may be impaired if the taste and odor elements are apparent during exposure, suggesting that configural processing may underpin learning. Using a new procedure, participants made actual flavor discriminations for one odor-taste pair (e.g., Taste A vs. Odor X-Taste A) and mock discriminations for another (e.g., Odor Y-Taste B vs. Odor Y-Taste B). Participants, who were successful at detecting the actual flavor discriminations, demonstrated equal amounts of learning for both odor-taste pairings. These results suggest that although a capacity to discriminate flavor into its elements may be necessary to support learning, whether participants experience a configural or elemental flavor representation may not.

  11. Differential effects of 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) and 4-methylmethcathinone (mephedrone) in rats trained to discriminate MDMA or a d-amphetamine + MDMA mixture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, Eric L; Baker, Lisa E

    2016-02-01

    Recent reports on the abuse of novel synthetic cathinone derivatives call attention to serious public health risks of these substances. In response to this concern, a growing body of preclinical research has characterized the psychopharmacology of these substances, particularly mephedrone (MEPH) or methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV), noting their similarities to 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) and cocaine. Few studies have utilized drug discrimination methodology to characterize the psychopharmacological properties of these substances. The present study employed a rodent drug discrimination assay to further characterize the stimulus effects of MEPH and MDPV in comparison to MDMA and to a drug mixture comprised of d-amphetamine and MDMA. Eight male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained to discriminate 1.5 mg/kg MDMA, and eight rats were trained to discriminate a mixture of 1.5 mg/kg MDMA and 0.5 mg/kg d-amphetamine (MDMA + AMPH) from vehicle. Substitution tests were conducted with MDMA, d-amphetamine, MDPV, MEPH, and cocaine. Dose-response curves generated with MDMA and MEPH were comparable between training groups. In contrast, AMPH, MDPV, and cocaine produced only partial substitution in animals trained to discriminate MDMA but produced full substitution in animals trained to discriminate the MDMA + AMPH mixture. These findings indicate that MDPV's effects may be more similar to those of traditional psychostimulants, whereas MEPH exerts stimulus effects more similar to those of MDMA. Additional experiments with selective DA and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) receptor antagonists are required to further elucidate specific receptor mechanisms mediating the discriminative stimulus effects of MDPV and mephedrone.

  12. Shared and Distinct Rupture Discriminants of Small and Large Intracranial Aneurysms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varble, Nicole; Tutino, Vincent M; Yu, Jihnhee; Sonig, Ashish; Siddiqui, Adnan H; Davies, Jason M; Meng, Hui

    2018-04-01

    Many ruptured intracranial aneurysms (IAs) are small. Clinical presentations suggest that small and large IAs could have different phenotypes. It is unknown if small and large IAs have different characteristics that discriminate rupture. We analyzed morphological, hemodynamic, and clinical parameters of 413 retrospectively collected IAs (training cohort; 102 ruptured IAs). Hierarchal cluster analysis was performed to determine a size cutoff to dichotomize the IA population into small and large IAs. We applied multivariate logistic regression to build rupture discrimination models for small IAs, large IAs, and an aggregation of all IAs. We validated the ability of these 3 models to predict rupture status in a second, independently collected cohort of 129 IAs (testing cohort; 14 ruptured IAs). Hierarchal cluster analysis in the training cohort confirmed that small and large IAs are best separated at 5 mm based on morphological and hemodynamic features (area under the curve=0.81). For small IAs (IAs (area under the curve=0.84; 95% confidence interval, 0.78-0.88), whereas for large IAs (≥5 mm), the model included undulation index, low wall shear stress, previous subarachnoid hemorrhage, and IA location (area under the curve=0.87; 95% confidence interval, 0.82-0.93). The model for the aggregated training cohort retained all the parameters in the size-dichotomized models. Results in the testing cohort showed that the size-dichotomized rupture discrimination model had higher sensitivity (64% versus 29%) and accuracy (77% versus 74%), marginally higher area under the curve (0.75; 95% confidence interval, 0.61-0.88 versus 0.67; 95% confidence interval, 0.52-0.82), and similar specificity (78% versus 80%) compared with the aggregate-based model. Small (IAs have different hemodynamic and clinical, but not morphological, rupture discriminants. Size-dichotomized rupture discrimination models performed better than the aggregate model. © 2018 American Heart Association, Inc.

  13. Shared Processing of Language and Music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atherton, Ryan P; Chrobak, Quin M; Rauscher, Frances H; Karst, Aaron T; Hanson, Matt D; Steinert, Steven W; Bowe, Kyra L

    2018-01-01

    The present study sought to explore whether musical information is processed by the phonological loop component of the working memory model of immediate memory. Original instantiations of this model primarily focused on the processing of linguistic information. However, the model was less clear about how acoustic information lacking phonological qualities is actively processed. Although previous research has generally supported shared processing of phonological and musical information, these studies were limited as a result of a number of methodological concerns (e.g., the use of simple tones as musical stimuli). In order to further investigate this issue, an auditory interference task was employed. Specifically, participants heard an initial stimulus (musical or linguistic) followed by an intervening stimulus (musical, linguistic, or silence) and were then asked to indicate whether a final test stimulus was the same as or different from the initial stimulus. Results indicated that mismatched interference conditions (i.e., musical - linguistic; linguistic - musical) resulted in greater interference than silence conditions, with matched interference conditions producing the greatest interference. Overall, these results suggest that processing of linguistic and musical information draws on at least some of the same cognitive resources.

  14. Encoding of Discriminative Fear Memory by Input-Specific LTP in the Amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Woong Bin; Cho, Jun-Hyeong

    2017-08-30

    In auditory fear conditioning, experimental subjects learn to associate an auditory conditioned stimulus (CS) with an aversive unconditioned stimulus. With sufficient training, animals fear conditioned to an auditory CS show fear response to the CS, but not to irrelevant auditory stimuli. Although long-term potentiation (LTP) in the lateral amygdala (LA) plays an essential role in auditory fear conditioning, it is unknown whether LTP is induced selectively in the neural pathways conveying specific CS information to the LA in discriminative fear learning. Here, we show that postsynaptically expressed LTP is induced selectively in the CS-specific auditory pathways to the LA in a mouse model of auditory discriminative fear conditioning. Moreover, optogenetically induced depotentiation of the CS-specific auditory pathways to the LA suppressed conditioned fear responses to the CS. Our results suggest that input-specific LTP in the LA contributes to fear memory specificity, enabling adaptive fear responses only to the relevant sensory cue. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Associative symmetry and stimulus-class formation by pigeons: the role of non-reinforced baseline relations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urcuioli, Peter J

    2010-10-01

    Two experiments tested the assumption of Urcuioli's (2008) theory of pigeons' equivalence-class formation that consistent non-reinforcement of certain stimulus combinations in successive matching juxtaposed with consistent reinforcement of other combinations generates stimulus classes containing the elements of the reinforced combinations. In Experiment 1, pigeons were concurrently trained on symbolic (AB) and two identity (AA and BB) successive tasks in which half of all identity trials ended in non-reinforcement but all AB trials were reinforced, contingent upon either responding or not responding to the comparisons. Subsequent symmetry (BA) probe trials showed evidence of symmetry in one of four pigeons. In Experiment 2, pigeons learned three pair-comparison tasks in which left versus right spatial choices were reinforced after the various sample-comparison combinations comprising AB, AA, and BB conditional discriminations. Non-differentially reinforced BA probe trials following acquisition showed some indication of symmetrical choice responding. The overall results contradict the theoretical predictions derived from Urcuioli (2008) and those from Experiment 2 challenge other stimulus-class analyses as well. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Stimulus train duration but not attention moderates γ-band entrainment abnormalities in schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamm, Jordan P.; Bobilev, Anastasia M.; Hayrynen, Lauren K.; Hudgens-Haney, Matthew E.; Oliver, William T.; Parker, David A.; McDowell, Jennifer E.; Buckley, Peter A.; Clementz, Brett A.

    2017-01-01

    Electroencephalographic (EEG) studies of auditory steady-state responses (aSSRs) non-invasively probe gamma-band (40-Hz) oscillatory capacity in sensory cortex with high signal-to-noise ratio. Consistent reports of reduced 40-Hz aSSRs in persons with schizophrenia (SZ) indicate its potential as an efficient biomarker for the disease, but studies have been limited to passive or indirect listening contexts with stereotypically short (500ms) stimulus trains. An inability to modulate sensorineural processing in accord with behavioral goals or within the sensory environmental context may represent a fundamental deficit in SZ, but whether and how this deficit relates to reduced aSSRs is unknown. We systematically varied stimulus duration and attentional contexts to further mature the 40-Hz aSSR as biomarker for future translational or mechanistic studies. Eighteen SZ and 18 healthy subjects (H) were presented binaural pure-tones with or without sinusoidal amplitude modulation at 40-Hz. Stimulus duration (500-ms or 1500-ms) and attention (via a button press task) were varied across 4 separate blocks. Evoked potentials recorded with dense-array EEGs were analyzed in the time-frequency domain. SZ displayed reduced 40-Hz aSSRs to typical stimulation parameters, replicating previous findings. In H, aSSRs were reduced when stimuli were presented in longer trains and were slightly enhanced by attention. Only the former modulation was impaired in SZ and correlated with sensory discrimination performance. Thus, gamma-band aSSRs are modulated by both attentional and stimulus duration contexts, but only modulations related to physical stimulus properties are abnormal in SZ, supporting its status as a biomarker of psychotic perceptual disturbance involving non-attentional sensori-cortical circuits. PMID:25868936

  17. Refining Stimulus Parameters in Assessing Infant Speech Perception Using Visual Reinforcement Infant Speech Discrimination: Sensation Level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uhler, Kristin M; Baca, Rosalinda; Dudas, Emily; Fredrickson, Tammy

    2015-01-01

    Speech perception measures have long been considered an integral piece of the audiological assessment battery. Currently, a prelinguistic, standardized measure of speech perception is missing in the clinical assessment battery for infants and young toddlers. Such a measure would allow systematic assessment of speech perception abilities of infants as well as the potential to investigate the impact early identification of hearing loss and early fitting of amplification have on the auditory pathways. To investigate the impact of sensation level (SL) on the ability of infants with normal hearing (NH) to discriminate /a-i/ and /ba-da/ and to determine if performance on the two contrasts are significantly different in predicting the discrimination criterion. The design was based on a survival analysis model for event occurrence and a repeated measures logistic model for binary outcomes. The outcome for survival analysis was the minimum SL for criterion and the outcome for the logistic regression model was the presence/absence of achieving the criterion. Criterion achievement was designated when an infant's proportion correct score was >0.75 on the discrimination performance task. Twenty-two infants with NH sensitivity participated in this study. There were 9 males and 13 females, aged 6-14 mo. Testing took place over two to three sessions. The first session consisted of a hearing test, threshold assessment of the two speech sounds (/a/ and /i/), and if time and attention allowed, visual reinforcement infant speech discrimination (VRISD). The second session consisted of VRISD assessment for the two test contrasts (/a-i/ and /ba-da/). The presentation level started at 50 dBA. If the infant was unable to successfully achieve criterion (>0.75) at 50 dBA, the presentation level was increased to 70 dBA followed by 60 dBA. Data examination included an event analysis, which provided the probability of criterion distribution across SL. The second stage of the analysis was a

  18. Modeling direction discrimination thresholds for yaw rotations around an earth-vertical axis for arbitrary motion profiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soyka, Florian; Giordano, Paolo Robuffo; Barnett-Cowan, Michael; Bülthoff, Heinrich H

    2012-07-01

    Understanding the dynamics of vestibular perception is important, for example, for improving the realism of motion simulation and virtual reality environments or for diagnosing patients suffering from vestibular problems. Previous research has found a dependence of direction discrimination thresholds for rotational motions on the period length (inverse frequency) of a transient (single cycle) sinusoidal acceleration stimulus. However, self-motion is seldom purely sinusoidal, and up to now, no models have been proposed that take into account non-sinusoidal stimuli for rotational motions. In this work, the influence of both the period length and the specific time course of an inertial stimulus is investigated. Thresholds for three acceleration profile shapes (triangular, sinusoidal, and trapezoidal) were measured for three period lengths (0.3, 1.4, and 6.7 s) in ten participants. A two-alternative forced-choice discrimination task was used where participants had to judge if a yaw rotation around an earth-vertical axis was leftward or rightward. The peak velocity of the stimulus was varied, and the threshold was defined as the stimulus yielding 75 % correct answers. In accordance with previous research, thresholds decreased with shortening period length (from ~2 deg/s for 6.7 s to ~0.8 deg/s for 0.3 s). The peak velocity was the determining factor for discrimination: Different profiles with the same period length have similar velocity thresholds. These measurements were used to fit a novel model based on a description of the firing rate of semi-circular canal neurons. In accordance with previous research, the estimates of the model parameters suggest that velocity storage does not influence perceptual thresholds.

  19. A stimulus control technique for improving the efficacy of an established toilet training program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, S; Cipani, E; Clardy, A

    1994-06-01

    Standard toilet training regimens used with children with developmental disabilities have demonstrated effectiveness at achieving bladder and bowel continence. However, in some clinical applications in everyday practice, success has not been achieved, necessitating research into possible modifications of the current approaches. A widely used toilet training program was modified to reduce toileting accidents of a referred child. The modification involved the assessment of the discriminative stimulus for eliminating, namely, his undergarments. By removing the undergarments when an elimination became imminent, an "errorless" learning paradigm was established that allowed for more rapid and enduring acquisition of toileting skills than seen in previous training attempts. The results indicate the present procedure could expedite training for individuals who are difficult to teach appropriate toileting skills through an analysis of the controlling antecedent stimulus for accidents and subsequent manipulation of such stimuli.

  20. Highly Reconfigurable Beamformer Stimulus Generator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaviļina, E.; Gaigals, G.

    2018-02-01

    The present paper proposes a highly reconfigurable beamformer stimulus generator of radar antenna array, which includes three main blocks: settings of antenna array, settings of objects (signal sources) and a beamforming simulator. Following from the configuration of antenna array and object settings, different stimulus can be generated as the input signal for a beamformer. This stimulus generator is developed under a greater concept with two utterly independent paths where one is the stimulus generator and the other is the hardware beamformer. Both paths can be complemented in final and in intermediate steps as well to check and improve system performance. This way the technology development process is promoted by making each of the future hardware steps more substantive. Stimulus generator configuration capabilities and test results are presented proving the application of the stimulus generator for FPGA based beamforming unit development and tuning as an alternative to an actual antenna system.

  1. Contextual control of attentional allocation in human discrimination learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uengoer, Metin; Lachnit, Harald; Lotz, Anja; Koenig, Stephan; Pearce, John M

    2013-01-01

    In 3 human predictive learning experiments, we investigated whether the allocation of attention can come under the control of contextual stimuli. In each experiment, participants initially received a conditional discrimination for which one set of cues was trained as relevant in Context 1 and irrelevant in Context 2, and another set was relevant in Context 2 and irrelevant in Context 1. For Experiments 1 and 2, we observed that a second discrimination based on cues that had previously been trained as relevant in Context 1 during the conditional discrimination was acquired more rapidly in Context 1 than in Context 2. Experiment 3 revealed a similar outcome when new stimuli from the original dimensions were used in the test stage. Our results support the view that the associability of a stimulus can be controlled by the stimuli that accompany it.

  2. Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic (PKPD) Analysis with Drug Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negus, S Stevens; Banks, Matthew L

    2016-08-30

    Discriminative stimulus and other drug effects are determined by the concentration of drug at its target receptor and by the pharmacodynamic consequences of drug-receptor interaction. For in vivo procedures such as drug discrimination, drug concentration at receptors in a given anatomical location (e.g., the brain) is determined both by the dose of drug administered and by pharmacokinetic processes of absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion that deliver drug to and from that anatomical location. Drug discrimination data are often analyzed by strategies of dose-effect analysis to determine parameters such as potency and efficacy. Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic (PKPD) analysis is an alternative to conventional dose-effect analysis, and it relates drug effects to a measure of drug concentration in a body compartment (e.g., venous blood) rather than to drug dose. PKPD analysis can yield insights on pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic determinants of drug action. PKPD analysis can also facilitate translational research by identifying species differences in pharmacokinetics and providing a basis for integrating these differences into interpretation of drug effects. Examples are discussed here to illustrate the application of PKPD analysis to the evaluation of drug effects in rhesus monkeys trained to discriminate cocaine from saline.

  3. Carving Executive Control At Its Joints: Working Memory Capacity Predicts Stimulus-Stimulus, But Not Stimulus-Response, Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Matt E.; Kane, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    Three experiments examined the relation between working memory capacity (WMC) and two different forms of cognitive conflict: stimulus-stimulus (S-S) and stimulus-response (SR) interference. Our goal was to test whether WMC’s relation to conflict-task performance is mediated by stimulus-identification processes (captured by S-S conflict), response-selection processes (captured by S-R conflict), or both. In Experiment 1, subjects completed a single task presenting both S-S and S-R conflict trials, plus trials that combined the two conflict types. We limited ostensible goal-maintenance contributions to performance by requiring the same goal for all trial types and by presenting frequent conflict trials that reinforced the goal. WMC predicted resolution of S-S conflict as expected: Higher-WMC subjects showed reduced response time interference. Although WMC also predicted S-R interference, here, higher-WMC subjects showed increased error interference. Experiment 2A replicated these results in a version of the conflict task without combined S-S/S-R trials. Experiment 2B increased the proportion of congruent (non-conflict) trials to promote reliance on goal-maintenance processes. Here, higher-WMC subjects resolved both S-S and S-R conflict more successfully than did lower-WMC subjects. The results were consistent with Kane and Engle’s (2003) two-factor theory of cognitive control, according to which WMC predicts executive-task performance through goal-maintenance and conflict-resolution processes. However, the present results add specificity to the account by suggesting that higher-WMC subjects better resolve cognitive conflict because they more efficiently select relevant stimulus features against irrelevant, distracting ones. PMID:26120774

  4. Highly Reconfigurable Beamformer Stimulus Generator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vaviļina E.

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The present paper proposes a highly reconfigurable beamformer stimulus generator of radar antenna array, which includes three main blocks: settings of antenna array, settings of objects (signal sources and a beamforming simulator. Following from the configuration of antenna array and object settings, different stimulus can be generated as the input signal for a beamformer. This stimulus generator is developed under a greater concept with two utterly independent paths where one is the stimulus generator and the other is the hardware beamformer. Both paths can be complemented in final and in intermediate steps as well to check and improve system performance. This way the technology development process is promoted by making each of the future hardware steps more substantive. Stimulus generator configuration capabilities and test results are presented proving the application of the stimulus generator for FPGA based beamforming unit development and tuning as an alternative to an actual antenna system.

  5. Effects of X-ray radiation on complex visual discrimination learning and social recognition memory in rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine M Davis

    Full Text Available The present report describes an animal model for examining the effects of radiation on a range of neurocognitive functions in rodents that are similar to a number of basic human cognitive functions. Fourteen male Long-Evans rats were trained to perform an automated intra-dimensional set shifting task that consisted of their learning a basic discrimination between two stimulus shapes followed by more complex discrimination stages (e.g., a discrimination reversal, a compound discrimination, a compound reversal, a new shape discrimination, and an intra-dimensional stimulus discrimination reversal. One group of rats was exposed to head-only X-ray radiation (2.3 Gy at a dose rate of 1.9 Gy/min, while a second group received a sham-radiation exposure using the same anesthesia protocol. The irradiated group responded less, had elevated numbers of omitted trials, increased errors, and greater response latencies compared to the sham-irradiated control group. Additionally, social odor recognition memory was tested after radiation exposure by assessing the degree to which rats explored wooden beads impregnated with either their own odors or with the odors of novel, unfamiliar rats; however, no significant effects of radiation on social odor recognition memory were observed. These data suggest that rodent tasks assessing higher-level human cognitive domains are useful in examining the effects of radiation on the CNS, and may be applicable in approximating CNS risks from radiation exposure in clinical populations receiving whole brain irradiation.

  6. Effects of X-ray radiation on complex visual discrimination learning and social recognition memory in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Catherine M; Roma, Peter G; Armour, Elwood; Gooden, Virginia L; Brady, Joseph V; Weed, Michael R; Hienz, Robert D

    2014-01-01

    The present report describes an animal model for examining the effects of radiation on a range of neurocognitive functions in rodents that are similar to a number of basic human cognitive functions. Fourteen male Long-Evans rats were trained to perform an automated intra-dimensional set shifting task that consisted of their learning a basic discrimination between two stimulus shapes followed by more complex discrimination stages (e.g., a discrimination reversal, a compound discrimination, a compound reversal, a new shape discrimination, and an intra-dimensional stimulus discrimination reversal). One group of rats was exposed to head-only X-ray radiation (2.3 Gy at a dose rate of 1.9 Gy/min), while a second group received a sham-radiation exposure using the same anesthesia protocol. The irradiated group responded less, had elevated numbers of omitted trials, increased errors, and greater response latencies compared to the sham-irradiated control group. Additionally, social odor recognition memory was tested after radiation exposure by assessing the degree to which rats explored wooden beads impregnated with either their own odors or with the odors of novel, unfamiliar rats; however, no significant effects of radiation on social odor recognition memory were observed. These data suggest that rodent tasks assessing higher-level human cognitive domains are useful in examining the effects of radiation on the CNS, and may be applicable in approximating CNS risks from radiation exposure in clinical populations receiving whole brain irradiation.

  7. Effects of X-Ray Radiation on Complex Visual Discrimination Learning and Social Recognition Memory in Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Catherine M.; Roma, Peter G.; Armour, Elwood; Gooden, Virginia L.; Brady, Joseph V.; Weed, Michael R.; Hienz, Robert D.

    2014-01-01

    The present report describes an animal model for examining the effects of radiation on a range of neurocognitive functions in rodents that are similar to a number of basic human cognitive functions. Fourteen male Long-Evans rats were trained to perform an automated intra-dimensional set shifting task that consisted of their learning a basic discrimination between two stimulus shapes followed by more complex discrimination stages (e.g., a discrimination reversal, a compound discrimination, a compound reversal, a new shape discrimination, and an intra-dimensional stimulus discrimination reversal). One group of rats was exposed to head-only X-ray radiation (2.3 Gy at a dose rate of 1.9 Gy/min), while a second group received a sham-radiation exposure using the same anesthesia protocol. The irradiated group responded less, had elevated numbers of omitted trials, increased errors, and greater response latencies compared to the sham-irradiated control group. Additionally, social odor recognition memory was tested after radiation exposure by assessing the degree to which rats explored wooden beads impregnated with either their own odors or with the odors of novel, unfamiliar rats; however, no significant effects of radiation on social odor recognition memory were observed. These data suggest that rodent tasks assessing higher-level human cognitive domains are useful in examining the effects of radiation on the CNS, and may be applicable in approximating CNS risks from radiation exposure in clinical populations receiving whole brain irradiation. PMID:25099152

  8. Effects of stimulus-driven synchronization on sensory perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holden Jameson K

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A subject's ability to differentiate the loci of two points on the skin depends on the stimulus-evoked pericolumnar lateral inhibitory interactions which increase the spatial contrast between regions of SI cortex that are activated by stimulus-evoked afferent drive. Nevertheless, there is very little known about the impact that neuronal interactions – such as those evoked by mechanical skin stimuli that project to and coordinate synchronized activity in adjacent and/or near-adjacent cortical columns – could have on sensory information processing. Methods The temporal order judgment (TOJ and temporal discriminative threshold (TDT of 20 healthy adult subjects were assessed both in the absence and presence of concurrent conditions of tactile stimulation. These measures were obtained across a number of paired sites – two unilateral and one bilateral – and several conditions of adapting stimuli were delivered both prior to and concurrently with the TOJ and TDT tasks. The pairs of conditioning stimuli were synchronized and periodic, synchronized and non-periodic, or asynchronous and non-periodic. Results In the absence of any additional stimuli, TOJ and TDT results obtained from the study were comparable across a number of pairs of stimulus sites – unilateral as well as bilateral. In the presence of a 25 Hz conditioning sinusoidal stimulus which was delivered both before, concurrently and after the TOJ task, there was a significant change in the TOJ measured when the two stimuli were located unilaterally on digits 2 and 3. However, in the presence of the same 25 Hz conditioning stimulus, the TOJ obtained when the two stimuli were delivered bilaterally was not impacted. TDT measures were not impacted to the same degree by the concurrent stimuli that were delivered to the unilateral or bilateral stimulus sites. This led to the speculation that the impact that the conditioning stimuli – which were sinusoidal, periodic and

  9. Stimulus Effects on Local Preference: Stimulus-Response Contingencies, Stimulus-Food Pairing, and Stimulus-Food Correlation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davison, Michael; Baum, William M.

    2010-01-01

    Four pigeons were trained in a procedure in which concurrent-schedule food ratios changed unpredictably across seven unsignaled components after 10 food deliveries. Additional green-key stimulus presentations also occurred on the two alternatives, sometimes in the same ratio as the component food ratio, and sometimes in the inverse ratio. In eight…

  10. The time course of shape discrimination in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ales, Justin M; Appelbaum, L Gregory; Cottereau, Benoit R; Norcia, Anthony M

    2013-02-15

    The lateral occipital cortex (LOC) activates selectively to images of intact objects versus scrambled controls, is selective for the figure-ground relationship of a scene, and exhibits at least some degree of invariance for size and position. Because of these attributes, it is considered to be a crucial part of the object recognition pathway. Here we show that human LOC is critically involved in perceptual decisions about object shape. High-density EEG was recorded while subjects performed a threshold-level shape discrimination task on texture-defined figures segmented by either phase or orientation cues. The appearance or disappearance of a figure region from a uniform background generated robust visual evoked potentials throughout retinotopic cortex as determined by inverse modeling of the scalp voltage distribution. Contrasting responses from trials containing shape changes that were correctly detected (hits) with trials in which no change occurred (correct rejects) revealed stimulus-locked, target-selective activity in the occipital visual areas LOC and V4 preceding the subject's response. Activity that was locked to the subjects' reaction time was present in the LOC. Response-locked activity in the LOC was determined to be related to shape discrimination for several reasons: shape-selective responses were silenced when subjects viewed identical stimuli but their attention was directed away from the shapes to a demanding letter discrimination task; shape-selectivity was present across four different stimulus configurations used to define the figure; LOC responses correlated with participants' reaction times. These results indicate that decision-related activity is present in the LOC when subjects are engaged in threshold-level shape discriminations. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Joint entropy for space and spatial frequency domains estimated from psychometric functions of achromatic discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silveira, Vladímir de Aquino; Souza, Givago da Silva; Gomes, Bruno Duarte; Rodrigues, Anderson Raiol; Silveira, Luiz Carlos de Lima

    2014-01-01

    We used psychometric functions to estimate the joint entropy for space discrimination and spatial frequency discrimination. Space discrimination was taken as discrimination of spatial extent. Seven subjects were tested. Gábor functions comprising unidimensionalsinusoidal gratings (0.4, 2, and 10 cpd) and bidimensionalGaussian envelopes (1°) were used as reference stimuli. The experiment comprised the comparison between reference and test stimulithat differed in grating's spatial frequency or envelope's standard deviation. We tested 21 different envelope's standard deviations around the reference standard deviation to study spatial extent discrimination and 19 different grating's spatial frequencies around the reference spatial frequency to study spatial frequency discrimination. Two series of psychometric functions were obtained for 2%, 5%, 10%, and 100% stimulus contrast. The psychometric function data points for spatial extent discrimination or spatial frequency discrimination were fitted with Gaussian functions using the least square method, and the spatial extent and spatial frequency entropies were estimated from the standard deviation of these Gaussian functions. Then, joint entropy was obtained by multiplying the square root of space extent entropy times the spatial frequency entropy. We compared our results to the theoretical minimum for unidimensional Gábor functions, 1/4π or 0.0796. At low and intermediate spatial frequencies and high contrasts, joint entropy reached levels below the theoretical minimum, suggesting non-linear interactions between two or more visual mechanisms. We concluded that non-linear interactions of visual pathways, such as the M and P pathways, could explain joint entropy values below the theoretical minimum at low and intermediate spatial frequencies and high contrasts. These non-linear interactions might be at work at intermediate and high contrasts at all spatial frequencies once there was a substantial decrease in joint

  12. Self-Presentation of Beliefs about Gender Discrimination and Feminism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosell, Michelle Ceynar; Hartman, Shelly L.

    2001-01-01

    Examined whether college students' expressed beliefs about gender discrimination and feminism related to concerns about self-presentation. Students completed gender discrimination and feminism scales and discussed hypothetical court cases. They were told their views would be either shared publicly or remain private. Men expressed more belief in…

  13. Payoff Shares in Two-Player Contests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Häfner

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In imperfectly discriminating contests with symmetric valuations, equilibrium payoffs are positive shares of the value of the prize. In contrast to a bargaining situation, players’ shares sum to less than one because a residual share of the value is lost due to rent dissipation. In this paper, we consider contests with two players and investigate the relationship between these equilibrium shares and the parameters of a class of asymmetric Tullock contest success functions. Our main finding is that any players’ shares that sum up to less than one can arise as the unique outcome of a pure-strategy Nash equilibrium for appropriate parameters.

  14. Speed and accuracy of visual motion discrimination by rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pamela Reinagel

    Full Text Available Animals must continuously evaluate sensory information to select the preferable among possible actions in a given context, including the option to wait for more information before committing to another course of action. In experimental sensory decision tasks that replicate these features, reaction time distributions can be informative about the implicit rules by which animals determine when to commit and what to do. We measured reaction times of Long-Evans rats discriminating the direction of motion in a coherent random dot motion stimulus, using a self-paced two-alternative forced-choice (2-AFC reaction time task. Our main findings are: (1 When motion strength was constant across trials, the error trials had shorter reaction times than correct trials; in other words, accuracy increased with response latency. (2 When motion strength was varied in randomly interleaved trials, accuracy increased with motion strength, whereas reaction time decreased. (3 Accuracy increased with reaction time for each motion strength considered separately, and in the interleaved motion strength experiment overall. (4 When stimulus duration was limited, accuracy improved with stimulus duration, whereas reaction time decreased. (5 Accuracy decreased with response latency after stimulus offset. This was the case for each stimulus duration considered separately, and in the interleaved duration experiment overall. We conclude that rats integrate visual evidence over time, but in this task the time of their response is governed more by elapsed time than by a criterion for sufficient evidence.

  15. Hand proximity facilitates spatial discrimination of auditory tones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip eTseng

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The effect of hand proximity on vision and visual attention has been well documented. In this study we tested whether such effect(s would also be present in the auditory modality. With hands placed either near or away from the audio sources, participants performed an auditory-spatial discrimination (Exp 1: left or right side, pitch discrimination (Exp 2: high, med, or low tone, and spatial-plus-pitch (Exp 3: left or right; high, med, or low discrimination task. In Exp 1, when hands were away from the audio source, participants consistently responded faster with their right hand regardless of stimulus location. This right hand advantage, however, disappeared in the hands-near condition because of a significant improvement in left hand’s reaction time. No effect of hand proximity was found in Exp 2 or 3, where a choice reaction time task requiring pitch discrimination was used. Together, these results suggest that the effect of hand proximity is not exclusive to vision alone, but is also present in audition, though in a much weaker form. Most important, these findings provide evidence from auditory attention that supports the multimodal account originally raised by Reed et al. in 2006.

  16. Flexible goal imitation: Vicarious feedback influences stimulus-response binding by observation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giesen, Carina; Scherdin, Kerstin; Rothermund, Klaus

    2017-06-01

    This study investigated whether vicarious feedback influences binding processes between stimuli and observed responses. Two participants worked together in a shared color categorization task, taking the roles of actor and observer in turns. During a prime trial, participants saw a word while observing the other person executing a specific response. Automatic binding of words and observed responses into stimulus-response (S-R) episodes was assessed via word repetition effects in a subsequent probe trial in which either the same (compatible) or a different (incompatible) response had to be executed by the participants in response to the same or a different word. Results showed that vicarious prime feedback (i.e., the feedback that the other participant received for her or his response in the prime) modulated S-R retrieval effects: After positive vicarious prime feedback, typical S-R retrieval effects emerged (i.e., performance benefits for stimulus repetition probes with compatible responses, but performance costs for stimulus repetition probes with incompatible responses emerged). Notably, however, S-R-retrieval effects were reversed after vicarious negative prime feedback (meaning that stimulus repetition in the probe resulted in performance costs if prime and probe responses were compatible, and in performance benefits for incompatible responses). Findings are consistent with a flexible goal imitation account, according to which imitation is based on an interpretative and therefore feedback-sensitive reconstruction of action goals from observed movements. In concert with earlier findings, this data support the conclusion that transient S-R binding and retrieval processes are involved in social learning phenomena.

  17. Separate and combined effects of the GABAB agonist baclofen and Δ9-THC in humans discriminating Δ9-THC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lile, Joshua A.; Kelly, Thomas H.; Hays, Lon R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Our previous research with the GABA reuptake inhibitor tiagabine suggested the involvement GABA in the interoceptive effects of Δ9-THC. The aim of the present study was to determine the potential involvement of the GABAB receptor subtype by assessing the separate and combined effects of the GABAB-selective agonist baclofen and Δ9-THC using pharmacologically specific drug-discrimination procedures. Methods Eight cannabis users learned to discriminate 30 mg oral Δ9-THC from placebo and then received baclofen (25 and 50 mg), Δ9-THC (5, 15 and 30 mg) and placebo, alone and in combination. Self-report, task performance and physiological measures were also collected. Results Δ9-THC functioned as a discriminative stimulus, produced subjective effects typically associated with cannabinoids (e.g., High, Stoned, Like Drug), elevated heart rate and impaired rate and accuracy on a psychomotor performance task. Baclofen alone (50 mg) substituted for the Δ9-THC discriminative stimulus, and both baclofen doses shifted the discriminative-stimulus effects of Δ9-THC leftward/upward. Similar results were observed on other cannabinoid-sensitive outcomes, although baclofen generally did not engender Δ9-THC-like subjective responses when administered alone. Conclusions These results suggest that the GABAB receptor subtype is involved in the abuse-related effects of Δ9-THC, and that GABAB receptors were responsible, at least in part, for the effects of tiagabine-induced elevated GABA on cannabinoid-related behaviors in our previous study. Future research should test GABAergic compounds selective for other GABA receptor subtypes (i.e., GABAA) to determine the contribution of the different GABA receptors in the effects of Δ9-THC, and by extension cannabis, in humans. PMID:22699093

  18. Discriminative Stimulus Properties of the Endocannabinoid Catabolic Enzyme Inhibitor SA-57 in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Owens, Robert A.; Ignatowska-Jankowska, Bogna; Mustafa, Mohammed; Beardsley, Patrick M.; Wiley, Jenny L.; Jali, Abdulmajeed; Selley, Dana E.; Niphakis, Micah J.; Cravatt, Benjamin F.; Lichtman, Aron H.

    2016-01-01

    Whereas the inhibition of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) or monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL), the respective major hydrolytic enzymes of N-arachidonoyl ethanolamine (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), elicits no or partial substitution for Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in drug-discrimination procedures, combined inhibition of both enzymes fully substitutes for THC, as well as produces a constellation of cannabimimetic effects. The present study tested whether C57BL/6J mice would learn t...

  19. Delayed discrimination of spatial frequency for gratings of different orientation: behavioral and fMRI evidence for low-level perceptual memory stores in early visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann, Oliver; Endestad, Tor; Magnussen, Svein; Greenlee, Mark W

    2008-07-01

    The concept of perceptual memory refers to the neural and cognitive processes underlying the storage of specific stimulus features such as spatial frequency, orientation, shape, contrast, and color. Psychophysical studies of perceptual memory indicate that observers can retain visual information about the spatial frequency of Gabor patterns independent of the orientation with which they are presented. Compared to discrimination of gratings with the same orientation, reaction times to orthogonally oriented gratings, however, increase suggesting additional processing. Using event-related fMRI we examined the pattern of neural activation evoked when subjects discriminated the spatial frequency of Gabors presented with the same or orthogonal orientation. Blood-oxygen level dependent BOLD fMRI revealed significantly elevated bilateral activity in visual areas (V1, V2) when the gratings to be compared had an orthogonal orientation, compared to when they had the same orientation. These findings suggest that a change in an irrelevant stimulus dimension requires additional processing in primary and secondary visual areas. The finding that the task-irrelevant stimulus property (orientation) had no significant effect on the prefrontal and intraparietal cortex supports a model of working memory in which discrimination and retention of basic stimulus dimensions is based on low-level perceptual memory stores that are located at an early stage in the visual process. Our findings suggest that accessing different stores requires time and has higher metabolic costs.

  20. Modeling phoneme perception. II: A model of stop consonant discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Hessen, A J; Schouten, M E

    1992-10-01

    Combining elements from two existing theories of speech sound discrimination, dual process theory (DPT) and trace context theory (TCT), a new theory, called phoneme perception theory, is proposed, consisting of a long-term phoneme memory, a context-coding memory, and a trace memory, each with its own time constants. This theory is tested by means of stop-consonant discrimination data in which interstimulus interval (ISI; values of 100, 300, and 2000 ms) is an important variable. It is shown that discrimination in which labeling plays an important part (2IFC and AX between category) benefits from increased ISI, whereas discrimination in which only sensory traces are compared (AX within category), decreases with increasing ISI. The theory is also tested on speech discrimination data from the literature in which ISI is a variable [Pisoni, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 36, 277-282 (1964); Cowan and Morse, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 79, 500-507 (1986)]. It is concluded that the number of parameters in trace context theory is not sufficient to account for most speech-sound discrimination data and that a few additional assumptions are needed, such as a form of sublabeling, in which subjects encode the quality of a stimulus as a member of a category, and which requires processing time.

  1. Discrimination and streaming of speech sounds based on differences in interaural and spectral cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Marion; Lavandier, Mathieu; Grimault, Nicolas; Oxenham, Andrew J

    2017-09-01

    Differences in spatial cues, including interaural time differences (ITDs), interaural level differences (ILDs) and spectral cues, can lead to stream segregation of alternating noise bursts. It is unknown how effective such cues are for streaming sounds with realistic spectro-temporal variations. In particular, it is not known whether the high-frequency spectral cues associated with elevation remain sufficiently robust under such conditions. To answer these questions, sequences of consonant-vowel tokens were generated and filtered by non-individualized head-related transfer functions to simulate the cues associated with different positions in the horizontal and median planes. A discrimination task showed that listeners could discriminate changes in interaural cues both when the stimulus remained constant and when it varied between presentations. However, discrimination of changes in spectral cues was much poorer in the presence of stimulus variability. A streaming task, based on the detection of repeated syllables in the presence of interfering syllables, revealed that listeners can use both interaural and spectral cues to segregate alternating syllable sequences, despite the large spectro-temporal differences between stimuli. However, only the full complement of spatial cues (ILDs, ITDs, and spectral cues) resulted in obligatory streaming in a task that encouraged listeners to integrate the tokens into a single stream.

  2. Vicarious trial-and-error behavior and hippocampal cytochrome oxidase activity during Y-maze discrimination learning in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Dan; Xu, Xiaojuan; Gonzalez-Lima, Francisco

    2006-03-01

    The present study investigated whether more vicarious trial-and-error (VTE) behavior, defined by head movement from one stimulus to another at a choice point during simultaneous discriminations, led to better visual discrimination learning in a Y-maze, and whether VTE behavior was a function of the hippocampus by measuring regional brain cytochrome oxidase (C.O.) activity, an index of neuronal metabolic activity. The results showed that the more VTEs a rat made, the better the rat learned the visual discrimination. Furthermore, both learning and VTE behavior during learning were correlated to C.O. activity in the hippocampus, suggesting that the hippocampus plays a role in VTE behavior during discrimination learning.

  3. Effects of Adaptation on Discrimination of Whisker Deflection Velocity and Angular Direction in a Model of the Barrel Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mainak J. Patel

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Two important stimulus features represented within the rodent barrel cortex are velocity and angular direction of whisker deflection. Each cortical barrel receives information from thalamocortical (TC cells that relay information from a single whisker, and TC input is decoded by barrel regular-spiking (RS cells through a feedforward inhibitory architecture (with inhibition delivered by cortical fast-spiking or FS cells. TC cells encode deflection velocity through population synchrony, while deflection direction is encoded through the distribution of spike counts across the TC population. Barrel RS cells encode both deflection direction and velocity with spike rate, and are divided into functional domains by direction preference. Following repetitive whisker stimulation, system adaptation causes a weakening of synaptic inputs to RS cells and diminishes RS cell spike responses, though evidence suggests that stimulus discrimination may improve following adaptation. In this work, I construct a model of the TC, FS, and RS cells comprising a single barrel system—the model incorporates realistic synaptic connectivity and dynamics and simulates both angular direction (through the spatial pattern of TC activation and velocity (through synchrony of the TC population spikes of a deflection of the primary whisker, and I use the model to examine direction and velocity selectivity of barrel RS cells before and after adaptation. I find that velocity and direction selectivity of individual RS cells (measured over multiple trials sharpens following adaptation, but stimulus discrimination using a simple linear classifier by the RS population response during a single trial (a more biologically meaningful measure than single cell discrimination over multiple trials exhibits strikingly different behavior—velocity discrimination is similar both before and after adaptation, while direction classification improves substantially following adaptation. This is the

  4. The Influence of Eye Closure on Somatosensory Discrimination: A Trade-off Between Simple Perception and Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Götz, Theresa; Hanke, David; Huonker, Ralph; Weiss, Thomas; Klingner, Carsten; Brodoehl, Stefan; Baumbach, Philipp; Witte, Otto W

    2017-06-01

    We often close our eyes to improve perception. Recent results have shown a decrease of perception thresholds accompanied by an increase in somatosensory activity after eye closure. However, does somatosensory spatial discrimination also benefit from eye closure? We previously showed that spatial discrimination is accompanied by a reduction of somatosensory activity. Using magnetoencephalography, we analyzed the magnitude of primary somatosensory (somatosensory P50m) and primary auditory activity (auditory P50m) during a one-back discrimination task in 21 healthy volunteers. In complete darkness, participants were requested to pay attention to either the somatosensory or auditory stimulation and asked to open or close their eyes every 6.5 min. Somatosensory P50m was reduced during a task requiring the distinguishing of stimulus location changes at the distal phalanges of different fingers. The somatosensory P50m was further reduced and detection performance was higher during eyes open. A similar reduction was found for the auditory P50m during a task requiring the distinguishing of changing tones. The function of eye closure is more than controlling visual input. It might be advantageous for perception because it is an effective way to reduce interference from other modalities, but disadvantageous for spatial discrimination because it requires at least one top-down processing stage. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Effect of GABA agonists and GABA-A receptor modulators on cocaine- and food-maintained responding and cocaine discrimination in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, Andrew C; Negus, S Stevens; Mello, Nancy K; Caine, S Barak

    2005-11-01

    Recent studies indicate that GABAergic ligands modulate abuse-related effects of cocaine. The goal of this study was to evaluate the effects of a mechanistically diverse group of GABAergic ligands on the discriminative stimulus and reinforcing effects of cocaine in rats. One group of rats was trained to discriminate 5.6 mg/kg cocaine from saline in a two-lever, food-reinforced, drug discrimination procedure. In two other groups, responding was maintained by cocaine (0-3.2 mg/kg/injection) or liquid food (0-100%) under a fixed ratio 5 schedule. Six GABA agonists were tested: the GABA-A receptor agonist muscimol, the GABA-B receptor agonist baclofen, the GABA transaminase inhibitor gamma-vinyl-GABA (GVG), and three GABA-A receptor modulators (the barbiturate pentobarbital, the high-efficacy benzodiazepine midazolam, and the low-efficacy benzodiazepine enazenil). When tested alone, none of the compounds substituted fully for the discriminative stimulus effects of cocaine. As acute pretreatments, select doses of midazolam and pentobarbital produced 2.2- to 3.6-fold rightward shifts in the cocaine dose-effect function. In contrast, muscimol, baclofen, GVG, and enazenil failed to alter the discriminative stimulus effects of cocaine. In assays of cocaine- and food-maintained responding, midazolam and pentobarbital decreased cocaine self-administration at doses 9.6- and 3.3-fold lower, respectively, than those that decreased food-maintained responding. In contrast, muscimol, baclofen, and GVG decreased cocaine self-administration at doses that also decreased food-maintained responding. Enazenil failed to alter cocaine self-administration. Together with previous studies, these data suggest that among mechanistically diverse GABA agonists, high-efficacy GABA-A modulators may be the most effective for modifying the abuse-related effects of cocaine.

  6. Undesirable Choice Biases with Small Differences in the Spatial Structure of Chance Stimulus Sequences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Herrera

    Full Text Available In two-alternative discrimination tasks, experimenters usually randomize the location of the rewarded stimulus so that systematic behavior with respect to irrelevant stimuli can only produce chance performance on the learning curves. One way to achieve this is to use random numbers derived from a discrete binomial distribution to create a 'full random training schedule' (FRS. When using FRS, however, sporadic but long laterally-biased training sequences occur by chance and such 'input biases' are thought to promote the generation of laterally-biased choices (i.e., 'output biases'. As an alternative, a 'Gellerman-like training schedule' (GLS can be used. It removes most input biases by prohibiting the reward from appearing on the same location for more than three consecutive trials. The sequence of past rewards obtained from choosing a particular discriminative stimulus influences the probability of choosing that same stimulus on subsequent trials. Assuming that the long-term average ratio of choices matches the long-term average ratio of reinforcers, we hypothesized that a reduced amount of input biases in GLS compared to FRS should lead to a reduced production of output biases. We compared the choice patterns produced by a 'Rational Decision Maker' (RDM in response to computer-generated FRS and GLS training sequences. To create a virtual RDM, we implemented an algorithm that generated choices based on past rewards. Our simulations revealed that, although the GLS presented fewer input biases than the FRS, the virtual RDM produced more output biases with GLS than with FRS under a variety of test conditions. Our results reveal that the statistical and temporal properties of training sequences interacted with the RDM to influence the production of output biases. Thus, discrete changes in the training paradigms did not translate linearly into modifications in the pattern of choices generated by a RDM. Virtual RDMs could be further employed to guide

  7. Undesirable Choice Biases with Small Differences in the Spatial Structure of Chance Stimulus Sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrera, David; Treviño, Mario

    2015-01-01

    In two-alternative discrimination tasks, experimenters usually randomize the location of the rewarded stimulus so that systematic behavior with respect to irrelevant stimuli can only produce chance performance on the learning curves. One way to achieve this is to use random numbers derived from a discrete binomial distribution to create a 'full random training schedule' (FRS). When using FRS, however, sporadic but long laterally-biased training sequences occur by chance and such 'input biases' are thought to promote the generation of laterally-biased choices (i.e., 'output biases'). As an alternative, a 'Gellerman-like training schedule' (GLS) can be used. It removes most input biases by prohibiting the reward from appearing on the same location for more than three consecutive trials. The sequence of past rewards obtained from choosing a particular discriminative stimulus influences the probability of choosing that same stimulus on subsequent trials. Assuming that the long-term average ratio of choices matches the long-term average ratio of reinforcers, we hypothesized that a reduced amount of input biases in GLS compared to FRS should lead to a reduced production of output biases. We compared the choice patterns produced by a 'Rational Decision Maker' (RDM) in response to computer-generated FRS and GLS training sequences. To create a virtual RDM, we implemented an algorithm that generated choices based on past rewards. Our simulations revealed that, although the GLS presented fewer input biases than the FRS, the virtual RDM produced more output biases with GLS than with FRS under a variety of test conditions. Our results reveal that the statistical and temporal properties of training sequences interacted with the RDM to influence the production of output biases. Thus, discrete changes in the training paradigms did not translate linearly into modifications in the pattern of choices generated by a RDM. Virtual RDMs could be further employed to guide the selection of

  8. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-05-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed each to provide the delivery of a tactile stimulus, a repetitive light tapping, at different locations (spaced 10.0 cm apart) along the horse's back. Two preliminary steps were necessary before generalization testing: training a measurable response (lip pressing) and training on several reinforcement schedules in the presence of a training stimulus (tapping by one of the solenoids). We then gave each horse two generalization test sessions. Results indicated that the horses' behavior was effectively controlled by the training stimulus. Horses made the greatest number of responses to the training stimulus, and the tendency to respond to the other test stimuli diminished as the stimuli became farther away from the training stimulus. These findings are discussed in the context of behavioral principles and their relevance to the training of horses.

  9. Cortical activity patterns predict robust speech discrimination ability in noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shetake, Jai A.; Wolf, Jordan T.; Cheung, Ryan J.; Engineer, Crystal T.; Ram, Satyananda K.; Kilgard, Michael P.

    2012-01-01

    The neural mechanisms that support speech discrimination in noisy conditions are poorly understood. In quiet conditions, spike timing information appears to be used in the discrimination of speech sounds. In this study, we evaluated the hypothesis that spike timing is also used to distinguish between speech sounds in noisy conditions that significantly degrade neural responses to speech sounds. We tested speech sound discrimination in rats and recorded primary auditory cortex (A1) responses to speech sounds in background noise of different intensities and spectral compositions. Our behavioral results indicate that rats, like humans, are able to accurately discriminate consonant sounds even in the presence of background noise that is as loud as the speech signal. Our neural recordings confirm that speech sounds evoke degraded but detectable responses in noise. Finally, we developed a novel neural classifier that mimics behavioral discrimination. The classifier discriminates between speech sounds by comparing the A1 spatiotemporal activity patterns evoked on single trials with the average spatiotemporal patterns evoked by known sounds. Unlike classifiers in most previous studies, this classifier is not provided with the stimulus onset time. Neural activity analyzed with the use of relative spike timing was well correlated with behavioral speech discrimination in quiet and in noise. Spike timing information integrated over longer intervals was required to accurately predict rat behavioral speech discrimination in noisy conditions. The similarity of neural and behavioral discrimination of speech in noise suggests that humans and rats may employ similar brain mechanisms to solve this problem. PMID:22098331

  10. The stochastic network dynamics underlying perceptual discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Genis Prat-Ortega

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The brain is able to interpret streams of high-dimensional ambiguous information and yield coherent percepts. The mechanisms governing sensory integration have been extensively characterized using time-varying visual stimuli (Britten et al. 1996; Roitman and Shadlen 2002, but some of the basic principles regarding the network dynamics underlying this process remain largely unknown. We captured the basic features of a neural integrator using three canonical one-dimensional models: (1 the Drift Diffusion Model (DDM, (2 the Perfect Integrator (PI which is a particular case of the DDM where the bounds are set to infinity and (3 the double-well potential (DW which captures the dynamics of the attractor networks (Wang 2002; Roxin and Ledberg 2008. Although these models has been widely studied (Bogacz et al. 2006; Roxin and Ledberg 2008; Gold and Shadlen 2002, it has been difficult to experimentally discriminate among them because most of the observables measured are only quantitatively different among these models (e.g. psychometric curves. Here we aim to find experimentally measurable quantities that can yield qualitatively different behaviors depending on the nature of the underlying network dynamics. We examined the categorization dynamics of these models in response to fluctuating stimuli of different duration (T. On each time step, stimuli are drawn from a Gaussian distribution N(μ, σ and the two stimulus categories are defined by μ > 0 and μ < 0. Psychometric curves can therefore be obtained by quantifying the probability of the integrator to yield one category versus μ . We find however that varying σ can reveal more clearly the differences among the different integrators. In the small σ regime, both the DW and the DDM perform transient integration and exhibit a decaying stimulus reverse correlation kernel revealing a primacy effect (Nienborg and Cumming 2009; Wimmer et al. 2015 . In the large σ regime, the integration in the DDM

  11. The effects of stimulus modality and task integrality: Predicting dual-task performance and workload from single-task levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart, S. G.; Shively, R. J.; Vidulich, M. A.; Miller, R. C.

    1986-01-01

    The influence of stimulus modality and task difficulty on workload and performance was investigated. The goal was to quantify the cost (in terms of response time and experienced workload) incurred when essentially serial task components shared common elements (e.g., the response to one initiated the other) which could be accomplished in parallel. The experimental tasks were based on the Fittsberg paradigm; the solution to a SternBERG-type memory task determines which of two identical FITTS targets are acquired. Previous research suggested that such functionally integrated dual tasks are performed with substantially less workload and faster response times than would be predicted by suming single-task components when both are presented in the same stimulus modality (visual). The physical integration of task elements was varied (although their functional relationship remained the same) to determine whether dual-task facilitation would persist if task components were presented in different sensory modalities. Again, it was found that the cost of performing the two-stage task was considerably less than the sum of component single-task levels when both were presented visually. Less facilitation was found when task elements were presented in different sensory modalities. These results suggest the importance of distinguishing between concurrent tasks that complete for limited resources from those that beneficially share common resources when selecting the stimulus modalities for information displays.

  12. Odor Discrimination in Drosophila: From Neural Population Codes to Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parnas, Moshe; Lin, Andrew C.; Huetteroth, Wolf; Miesenböck, Gero

    2013-01-01

    Summary Taking advantage of the well-characterized olfactory system of Drosophila, we derive a simple quantitative relationship between patterns of odorant receptor activation, the resulting internal representations of odors, and odor discrimination. Second-order excitatory and inhibitory projection neurons (ePNs and iPNs) convey olfactory information to the lateral horn, a brain region implicated in innate odor-driven behaviors. We show that the distance between ePN activity patterns is the main determinant of a fly’s spontaneous discrimination behavior. Manipulations that silence subsets of ePNs have graded behavioral consequences, and effect sizes are predicted by changes in ePN distances. ePN distances predict only innate, not learned, behavior because the latter engages the mushroom body, which enables differentiated responses to even very similar odors. Inhibition from iPNs, which scales with olfactory stimulus strength, enhances innate discrimination of closely related odors, by imposing a high-pass filter on transmitter release from ePN terminals that increases the distance between odor representations. PMID:24012006

  13. Oxytocin mediates rodent social memory within the lateral septum and the medial amygdala depending on the relevance of the social stimulus: male juvenile versus female adult conspecifics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukas, Michael; Toth, Iulia; Veenema, Alexa H; Neumann, Inga D

    2013-06-01

    Brain oxytocin (OXT) plays an important role in short-term social memory in laboratory rodents. Here we monitored local release of OXT and its functional involvement in the maintenance and retrieval of social memory during the social discrimination test. We further assessed, if the local effects of OXT within the medial amygdala (MeA) and lateral septum (LS) on social discrimination abilities were dependent on the biological relevance of the social stimulus, thus comparing male juvenile versus adult female conspecifics. OXT release was increased in the LS of male rats during the retrieval, but not during the acquisition or maintenance, of social memory for male juvenile stimuli. Blockade of OXT activity by intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration of a specific OXT receptor antagonist (OXTR-A, rats: 0.75 μg/5 μl, mice: 2 μg/2 μl) immediately after acquisition of social memory impaired the maintenance of social memory, and consequently discrimination abilities during retrieval of social memory. In contrast, ICV OXTR-A was without effect when administered 20 min prior to retrieval of social memory in both species. Non-social memory measured in the object discrimination test was not affected by ICV OXTR-A in male mice, indicating that brain OXT is mainly required for memory formation in a social context. The biological relevance of the social stimulus seems to importantly determine social memory abilities, as male rats recognized a previously encountered female adult stimulus for at least 2h (versus 60 min for male juveniles), with a region-dependent contribution of endogenous OXT; while bilateral administration of OXTR-A into the MeA (0.1 μg/1 μl) impaired social memory for adult females only, administration of OXTR-A into the LS via retrodialysis (10 μg/ml, 1.0 μl/min) impaired social memory for both male juveniles and female adults. Overall, these results indicate that brain OXT is a critical mediator of social memory in male rodents and that, depending

  14. Parallel and orthogonal stimulus in ultradiluted neural networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sobral, G. A. Jr.; Vieira, V. M.; Lyra, M. L.; Silva, C. R. da

    2006-01-01

    Extending a model due to Derrida, Gardner, and Zippelius, we have studied the recognition ability of an extreme and asymmetrically diluted version of the Hopfield model for associative memory by including the effect of a stimulus in the dynamics of the system. We obtain exact results for the dynamic evolution of the average network superposition. The stimulus field was considered as proportional to the overlapping of the state of the system with a particular stimulated pattern. Two situations were analyzed, namely, the external stimulus acting on the initialization pattern (parallel stimulus) and the external stimulus acting on a pattern orthogonal to the initialization one (orthogonal stimulus). In both cases, we obtained the complete phase diagram in the parameter space composed of the stimulus field, thermal noise, and network capacity. Our results show that the system improves its recognition ability for parallel stimulus. For orthogonal stimulus two recognition phases emerge with the system locking at the initialization or stimulated pattern. We confront our analytical results with numerical simulations for the noiseless case T=0

  15. Adaptive stimulus optimization for sensory systems neuroscience

    OpenAIRE

    DiMattina, Christopher; Zhang, Kechen

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we review several lines of recent work aimed at developing practical methods for adaptive on-line stimulus generation for sensory neurophysiology. We consider various experimental paradigms where on-line stimulus optimization is utilized, including the classical optimal stimulus paradigm where the goal of experiments is to identify a stimulus which maximizes neural responses, the iso-response paradigm which finds sets of stimuli giving rise to constant responses, and the system...

  16. Application of Discriminant Analysis on Romanian Insurance Market

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Constantin Anghelache

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Discriminant analysis is a supervised learning technique that can be used in order to determine which variables are the best predictors of the classification of objects belonging to a population into predetermined classes. At the same time, discriminant analysis provides a powerful tool that enables researchers to make predictions regarding the classification of new objects into predefined classes. The main goal of discriminant analysis is to determine which of the N descriptive variables have the most discriminatory power, that is, which of them are the most relevant for the classification of objects into classes. In order to classify objects, we need a mathematical model that provides the rules for optimal allocation. This is the classifier. In this paper we will discuss three of the most important models of classification: the Bayesian criterion, the Mahalanobis criterion and the Fisher criterion. In this paper, we will use discriminant analysis to classify the insurance companies that operated on the Romanian market in 2006. We have selected a number of eigth (8 relevant variables: gross written premium (GR_WRI_PRE, net mathematical reserves (NET_M_PES, gross claims paid (GR_CL_PAID, net premium reserves (NET_PRE_RES, net claim reserves (NET_CL_RES, net income (NE—_INCOME, share capital (SHARE_CAP and gross written premium ceded in Reinsurance (GR_WRI_PRE_CED. Before proceeding to discriminant analysis, we performed cluster analysis on the initial data in order to identify classes (clusters that emerge from the data.

  17. The stimulus integration area for horizontal vergence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allison, Robert S; Howard, Ian P; Fang, Xueping

    2004-06-01

    Over what region of space are horizontal disparities integrated to form the stimulus for vergence? The vergence system might be expected to respond to disparities within a small area of interest to bring them into the range of precise stereoscopic processing. However, the literature suggests that disparities are integrated over a fairly large parafoveal area. We report the results of six experiments designed to explore the spatial characteristics of the stimulus for vergence. Binocular eye movements were recorded using magnetic search coils. Each dichoptic display consisted of a central target stimulus that the subject attempted to fuse, and a competing stimulus with conflicting disparity. In some conditions the target was stationary, providing a fixation stimulus. In other conditions, the disparity of the target changed to provide a vergence-tracking stimulus. The target and competing stimulus were combined in a variety of conditions including those in which (1) a transparent textured-disc target was superimposed on a competing textured background, (2) a textured-disc target filled the centre of a competing annular background, and (3) a small target was presented within the centre of a competing annular background of various inner diameters. In some conditions the target and competing stimulus were separated in stereoscopic depth. The results are consistent with a disparity integration area with a diameter of about 5 degrees. Stimuli beyond this integration area can drive vergence in their own right, but they do not appear to be summed or averaged with a central stimulus to form a combined disparity signal. A competing stimulus had less effect on vergence when separated from the target by a disparity pedestal. As a result, we propose that it may be more useful to think in terms of an integration volume for vergence rather than a two-dimensional retinal integration area.

  18. Spatial Frequency Discrimination: Effects of Age, Reward, and Practice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlijn van den Boomen

    Full Text Available Social interaction starts with perception of the world around you. This study investigated two fundamental issues regarding the development of discrimination of higher spatial frequencies, which are important building blocks of perception. Firstly, it mapped the typical developmental trajectory of higher spatial frequency discrimination. Secondly, it developed and validated a novel design that could be applied to improve atypically developed vision. Specifically, this study examined the effect of age and reward on task performance, practice effects, and motivation (i.e., number of trials completed in a higher spatial frequency (reference frequency: 6 cycles per degree discrimination task. We measured discrimination thresholds in children aged between 7 to 12 years and adults (N = 135. Reward was manipulated by presenting either positive reinforcement or punishment. Results showed a decrease in discrimination thresholds with age, thus revealing that higher spatial frequency discrimination continues to develop after 12 years of age. This development continues longer than previously shown for discrimination of lower spatial frequencies. Moreover, thresholds decreased during the run, indicating that discrimination abilities improved. Reward did not affect performance or improvement. However, in an additional group of 5-6 year-olds (N = 28 punishments resulted in the completion of fewer trials compared to reinforcements. In both reward conditions children aged 5-6 years completed only a fourth or half of the run (64 to 128 out of 254 trials and were not motivated to continue. The design thus needs further adaptation before it can be applied to this age group. Children aged 7-12 years and adults completed the run, suggesting that the design is successful and motivating for children aged 7-12 years. This study thus presents developmental differences in higher spatial frequency discrimination thresholds. Furthermore, it presents a design that can be

  19. Spatial Frequency Discrimination: Effects of Age, Reward, and Practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Boomen, Carlijn; Peters, Judith Carolien

    2017-01-01

    Social interaction starts with perception of the world around you. This study investigated two fundamental issues regarding the development of discrimination of higher spatial frequencies, which are important building blocks of perception. Firstly, it mapped the typical developmental trajectory of higher spatial frequency discrimination. Secondly, it developed and validated a novel design that could be applied to improve atypically developed vision. Specifically, this study examined the effect of age and reward on task performance, practice effects, and motivation (i.e., number of trials completed) in a higher spatial frequency (reference frequency: 6 cycles per degree) discrimination task. We measured discrimination thresholds in children aged between 7 to 12 years and adults (N = 135). Reward was manipulated by presenting either positive reinforcement or punishment. Results showed a decrease in discrimination thresholds with age, thus revealing that higher spatial frequency discrimination continues to develop after 12 years of age. This development continues longer than previously shown for discrimination of lower spatial frequencies. Moreover, thresholds decreased during the run, indicating that discrimination abilities improved. Reward did not affect performance or improvement. However, in an additional group of 5-6 year-olds (N = 28) punishments resulted in the completion of fewer trials compared to reinforcements. In both reward conditions children aged 5-6 years completed only a fourth or half of the run (64 to 128 out of 254 trials) and were not motivated to continue. The design thus needs further adaptation before it can be applied to this age group. Children aged 7-12 years and adults completed the run, suggesting that the design is successful and motivating for children aged 7-12 years. This study thus presents developmental differences in higher spatial frequency discrimination thresholds. Furthermore, it presents a design that can be used in future

  20. Adaptive stimulus optimization for sensory systems neuroscience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiMattina, Christopher; Zhang, Kechen

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we review several lines of recent work aimed at developing practical methods for adaptive on-line stimulus generation for sensory neurophysiology. We consider various experimental paradigms where on-line stimulus optimization is utilized, including the classical optimal stimulus paradigm where the goal of experiments is to identify a stimulus which maximizes neural responses, the iso-response paradigm which finds sets of stimuli giving rise to constant responses, and the system identification paradigm where the experimental goal is to estimate and possibly compare sensory processing models. We discuss various theoretical and practical aspects of adaptive firing rate optimization, including optimization with stimulus space constraints, firing rate adaptation, and possible network constraints on the optimal stimulus. We consider the problem of system identification, and show how accurate estimation of non-linear models can be highly dependent on the stimulus set used to probe the network. We suggest that optimizing stimuli for accurate model estimation may make it possible to successfully identify non-linear models which are otherwise intractable, and summarize several recent studies of this type. Finally, we present a two-stage stimulus design procedure which combines the dual goals of model estimation and model comparison and may be especially useful for system identification experiments where the appropriate model is unknown beforehand. We propose that fast, on-line stimulus optimization enabled by increasing computer power can make it practical to move sensory neuroscience away from a descriptive paradigm and toward a new paradigm of real-time model estimation and comparison.

  1. Discriminative Stimulus Effects of 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine and Its Enantiomers in Mice: Pharmacokinetic Considerations

    OpenAIRE

    Fantegrossi, William E.; Murai, Naoki; Mathúna, Brian Ó.; Pizarro, Nieves; de la Torre, Rafael

    2009-01-01

    3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) is a drug of abuse with mixed stimulant- and hallucinogen-like effects. The aims of the present studies were to establish discrimination of S(+)-MDMA, R(-)-MDMA, or their combination as racemic MDMA in separate groups of mice to assess cross-substitution tests among all three compounds, to determine the time courses of the training doses, to assess pharmacokinetic variables after single injections and after cumulative dosing, an...

  2. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    OpenAIRE

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-01-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed...

  3. Speaker-Sex Discrimination for Voiced and Whispered Vowels at Short Durations

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, David R. R.

    2016-01-01

    Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel pe...

  4. A 3-lever discrimination procedure reveals differences in the subjective effects of low and high doses of MDMA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harper, David N; Langen, Anna-Lena; Schenk, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Drug discrimination studies have suggested that the subjective effects of low doses of (±)3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) are readily differentiated from those of d-amphetamine (AMPH) and that the discriminative stimulus properties are mediated by serotonergic and dopaminergic mechanisms, respectively. Previous studies, however, have primarily examined responses to doses that do not produce substantial increases in extracellular dopamine. The present study determined whether doses of MDMA that produce increases in synaptic dopamine would also produce subjective effects that were more like AMPH and were sensitive to pharmacological manipulation of D1-like receptors. A three-lever drug discrimination paradigm was used. Rats were trained to respond on different levers following saline, AMPH (0.5mg/kg, IP) or MDMA (1.5mg/kg, IP) injections. Generalization curves were generated for a range of different doses of both drugs and the effect of the D1-like antagonist, SCH23390 on the discriminative stimulus effects of different doses of MDMA was determined. Rats accurately discriminated MDMA, AMPH and saline. Low doses of MDMA produced almost exclusive responding on the MDMA lever but at doses of 3.0mg/kg MDMA or higher, responding shifted to the AMPH lever. The AMPH response produced by higher doses of MDMA was attenuated by pretreatment with SCH23390. The data suggest that low doses and higher doses of MDMA produce distinct discriminative stimuli. The shift to AMPH-like responding following administration of higher doses of MDMA, and the decrease in this response following administration of SCH23390 suggests a dopaminergic component to the subjective experience of MDMA at higher doses. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Neural dynamics of motion processing and speed discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chey, J; Grossberg, S; Mingolla, E

    1998-09-01

    A neural network model of visual motion perception and speed discrimination is presented. The model shows how a distributed population code of speed tuning, that realizes a size-speed correlation, can be derived from the simplest mechanisms whereby activations of multiple spatially short-range filters of different size are transformed into speed-turned cell responses. These mechanisms use transient cell responses to moving stimuli, output thresholds that covary with filter size, and competition. These mechanisms are proposed to occur in the V1-->MT cortical processing stream. The model reproduces empirically derived speed discrimination curves and simulates data showing how visual speed perception and discrimination can be affected by stimulus contrast, duration, dot density and spatial frequency. Model motion mechanisms are analogous to mechanisms that have been used to model 3-D form and figure-ground perception. The model forms the front end of a larger motion processing system that has been used to simulate how global motion capture occurs, and how spatial attention is drawn to moving forms. It provides a computational foundation for an emerging neural theory of 3-D form and motion perception.

  6. Conditioned [corrected] stimulus informativeness governs conditioned stimulus-unconditioned stimulus associability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Ryan D; Gallistel, C R; Jensen, Greg; Richards, Vanessa L; Fairhurst, Stephen; Balsam, Peter D

    2012-07-01

    In a conditioning protocol, the onset of the conditioned stimulus ([CS]) provides information about when to expect reinforcement (unconditioned stimulus [US]). There are two sources of information from the CS in a delay conditioning paradigm in which the CS-US interval is fixed. The first depends on the informativeness, the degree to which CS onset reduces the average expected time to onset of the next US. The second depends only on how precisely a subject can represent a fixed-duration interval (the temporal Weber fraction). In three experiments with mice, we tested the differential impact of these two sources of information on rate of acquisition of conditioned responding (CS-US associability). In Experiment 1, we showed that associability (the inverse of trials to acquisition) increased in proportion to informativeness. In Experiment 2, we showed that fixing the duration of the US-US interval or the CS-US interval or both had no effect on associability. In Experiment 3, we equated the increase in information produced by varying the C/T ratio with the increase produced by fixing the duration of the CS-US interval. Associability increased with increased informativeness, but, as in Experiment 2, fixing the CS-US duration had no effect on associability. These results are consistent with the view that CS-US associability depends on the increased rate of reward signaled by CS onset. The results also provide further evidence that conditioned responding is temporally controlled when it emerges.

  7. Rent Sharing and Gender Discrimination in Collegiate Athletics

    OpenAIRE

    Lackner, Mario; Zulehner, Christine

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we analyze the effect of market power on the share of females in top management positions using data from a market in which some firms have market power due to an institutionalized cartel. We investigate collegiate athletics and interpret coaches as top-level managers or chief executive officers (CEOs). The causal link between market power and female employment is established by exploiting the existence of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) as an exogenous shock. Our results sh...

  8. The Stimulus test stand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Christofek, L.; Rapidis, P.; Reinhard, A.; Fermilab

    2005-01-01

    The Stimulus Test Stand was originally constructed and assembled for testing the SVX2 ASIC readout and then upgraded for SVX3 ASIC prototyping and testing. We have modified this system for SVX4 ASIC [1] prototype testing. We described the individual components below. Additional details for other hardware for SVX4 testing can be found in reference [2]. We provide a description of the Stimulus Test Stand used for prototype testing of the SVX4 chip

  9. VARIASI STIMULUS DALAM PELATIHAN KEWIRAUSAHAAN STIMULUS VARIATION IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP TRAINING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarippudin Sarippudin

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Entrepreneurship training aims to prepare participants for entrepreneurship. This training is important because entrepreneurship is not an easy case. Training becomes a way to inculcate the entrepreneurial mentality to be determined to start a business, to face some risks and to be tenacious. In order to create this training succeed, instructors as training spearheads must have skills in conveying materials, even inspiring the participants. The stimulus variation is a form of instructors’ skill. Stimulus variation makes the learning process works well the training becomes fun, so that participants can be comfortable and voluntarily follow the learning process. Training is not a monotonous activity. The instructor can be an inspiration in the classroom, no longer just as a transmitter of learning materials.

  10. Foraging and ingestive behaviors of whale sharks, Rhincodon typus, in response to chemical stimulus cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dove, Alistair D M

    2015-02-01

    Whale sharks, Rhincodon typus, display a number of behaviors that suggest these animals can locate food from afar, as well as identify and discriminate between food items. However, their intractably large size and relative rarity in the field has so far prevented direct studies of their behavior and sensory capability. A small population of aquarium-held whale sharks facilitated direct studies of behavior in response to chemical stimulus plumes. Whale sharks were exposed to plumes composed of either homogenized krill or simple aqueous solutions of dimethyl sulfide (DMS), which is associated with krill aggregations and is used by several pelagic species as a food-finding stimulus. Whale sharks exhibited pronounced ingestive and search behaviors when exposed to both types of stimuli, compared to control trials. Ingestive behaviors included open mouth swimming and active surface feeding (gulping). These behaviors were stronger and more prevalent in response to krill homogenate plumes than to DMS plumes. Both chemical stimuli also increased visitation rate, and krill homogenate plumes additionally affected swimming speed. Whale sharks use chemosensory cues of multiple types to locate and identify palatable food, suggesting that chemical stimuli can help direct long-range movements and allow discrimination of different food items. There appears to be a hierarchy of responses: krill metabolites directly associated with food produced more frequent and intense feeding responses relative to DMS, which is indirectly associated with krill. DMS is used to find food by a number of pelagic species and may be an important signaling molecule in pelagic food webs. © 2015 Marine Biological Laboratory.

  11. The rapid distraction of attentional resources toward the source of incongruent stimulus input during multisensory conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohue, Sarah E; Todisco, Alexandra E; Woldorff, Marty G

    2013-04-01

    Neuroimaging work on multisensory conflict suggests that the relevant modality receives enhanced processing in the face of incongruency. However, the degree of stimulus processing in the irrelevant modality and the temporal cascade of the attentional modulations in either the relevant or irrelevant modalities are unknown. Here, we employed an audiovisual conflict paradigm with a sensory probe in the task-irrelevant modality (vision) to gauge the attentional allocation to that modality. ERPs were recorded as participants attended to and discriminated spoken auditory letters while ignoring simultaneous bilateral visual letter stimuli that were either fully congruent, fully incongruent, or partially incongruent (one side incongruent, one congruent) with the auditory stimulation. Half of the audiovisual letter stimuli were followed 500-700 msec later by a bilateral visual probe stimulus. As expected, ERPs to the audiovisual stimuli showed an incongruency ERP effect (fully incongruent versus fully congruent) of an enhanced, centrally distributed, negative-polarity wave starting ∼250 msec. More critically here, the sensory ERP components to the visual probes were larger when they followed fully incongruent versus fully congruent multisensory stimuli, with these enhancements greatest on fully incongruent trials with the slowest RTs. In addition, on the slowest-response partially incongruent trials, the P2 sensory component to the visual probes was larger contralateral to the preceding incongruent visual stimulus. These data suggest that, in response to conflicting multisensory stimulus input, the initial cognitive effect is a capture of attention by the incongruent irrelevant-modality input, pulling neural processing resources toward that modality, resulting in rapid enhancement, rather than rapid suppression, of that input.

  12. Pitch discrimination associated with phonological awareness: Evidence from congenital amusia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yanan; Lu, Xuejing; Ho, Hao Tam; Thompson, William Forde

    2017-03-13

    Research suggests that musical skills are associated with phonological abilities. To further investigate this association, we examined whether phonological impairments are evident in individuals with poor music abilities. Twenty individuals with congenital amusia and 20 matched controls were assessed on a pure-tone pitch discrimination task, a rhythm discrimination task, and four phonological tests. Amusic participants showed deficits in discriminating pitch and discriminating rhythmic patterns that involve a regular beat. At a group level, these individuals performed similarly to controls on all phonological tests. However, eight amusics with severe pitch impairment, as identified by the pitch discrimination task, exhibited significantly worse performance than all other participants in phonological awareness. A hierarchical regression analysis indicated that pitch discrimination thresholds predicted phonological awareness beyond that predicted by phonological short-term memory and rhythm discrimination. In contrast, our rhythm discrimination task did not predict phonological awareness beyond that predicted by pitch discrimination thresholds. These findings suggest that accurate pitch discrimination is critical for phonological processing. We propose that deficits in early-stage pitch discrimination may be associated with impaired phonological awareness and we discuss the shared role of pitch discrimination for processing music and speech.

  13. Response properties of neurons in the cat's putamen during auditory discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Zhenling; Sato, Yu; Qin, Ling

    2015-10-01

    The striatum integrates diverse convergent input and plays a critical role in the goal-directed behaviors. To date, the auditory functions of striatum are less studied. Recently, it was demonstrated that auditory cortico-striatal projections influence behavioral performance during a frequency discrimination task. To reveal the functions of striatal neurons in auditory discrimination, we recorded the single-unit spike activities in the putamen (dorsal striatum) of free-moving cats while performing a Go/No-go task to discriminate the sounds with different modulation rates (12.5 Hz vs. 50 Hz) or envelopes (damped vs. ramped). We found that the putamen neurons can be broadly divided into four groups according to their contributions to sound discrimination. First, 40% of neurons showed vigorous responses synchronized to the sound envelope, and could precisely discriminate different sounds. Second, 18% of neurons showed a high preference of ramped to damped sounds, but no preference for modulation rate. They could only discriminate the change of sound envelope. Third, 27% of neurons rapidly adapted to the sound stimuli, had no ability of sound discrimination. Fourth, 15% of neurons discriminated the sounds dependent on the reward-prediction. Comparing to passively listening condition, the activities of putamen neurons were significantly enhanced by the engagement of the auditory tasks, but not modulated by the cat's behavioral choice. The coexistence of multiple types of neurons suggests that the putamen is involved in the transformation from auditory representation to stimulus-reward association. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Comparison of Multipole Stimulus Configurations With Respect to Loudness and Spread of Excitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vellinga, Dirk; Briaire, Jeroen Johannes; van Meenen, David Michael Paul; Frijns, Johannes Hubertus Maria

    Current spread is a substantial limitation of speech coding strategies in cochlear implants. Multipoles have the potential to reduce current spread and thus generate more discriminable pitch percepts. The difficulty with multipoles is reaching sufficient loudness. The primary goal was to compare the loudness characteristics and spread of excitation (SOE) of three types of phased array stimulation, a novel multipole, with three more conventional configurations. Fifteen postlingually deafened cochlear implant users performed psychophysical experiments addressing SOE, loudness scaling, loudness threshold, loudness balancing, and loudness discrimination. Partial tripolar stimulation (pTP, σ = 0.75), TP, phased array with 16 (PA16) electrodes, and restricted phased array with five (PA5) and three (PA3) electrodes was compared with a reference monopolar stimulus. Despite a similar loudness growth function, there were considerable differences in current expenditure. The most energy efficient multipole was the pTP, followed by PA16 and PA5/PA3. TP clearly stood out as the least efficient one. Although the electric dynamic range was larger with multipolar configurations, the number of discriminable steps in loudness was not significantly increased. The SOE experiment could not demonstrate any difference between the stimulation strategies. The loudness characteristics all five multipolar configurations tested are similar. Because of their higher energy efficiency, pTP and PA16 are the most favorable candidates for future testing in clinical speech coding strategies.

  15. Voice gender discrimination provides a measure of more than pitch-related perception in cochlear implant users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tianhao; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2011-08-01

    (1) To investigate whether voice gender discrimination (VGD) could be a useful indicator of the spectral and temporal processing abilities of individual cochlear implant (CI) users; (2) To examine the relationship between VGD and speech recognition with CI when comparable acoustic cues are used for both perception processes. VGD was measured using two talker sets with different inter-gender fundamental frequencies (F(0)), as well as different acoustic CI simulations. Vowel and consonant recognition in quiet and noise were also measured and compared with VGD performance. Eleven postlingually deaf CI users. The results showed that (1) mean VGD performance differed for different stimulus sets, (2) VGD and speech recognition performance varied among individual CI users, and (3) individual VGD performance was significantly correlated with speech recognition performance under certain conditions. VGD measured with selected stimulus sets might be useful for assessing not only pitch-related perception, but also spectral and temporal processing by individual CI users. In addition to improvements in spectral resolution and modulation detection, the improvement in higher modulation frequency discrimination might be particularly important for CI users in noisy environments.

  16. The big sell: Managing stigma and workplace discrimination following moderate to severe brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stergiou-Kita, Mary; Grigorovich, Alisa; Damianakis, Thecla; Le Dorze, Guylaine; David, Christine; Lemsky, Carolyn; Hebert, Debbie

    2017-01-01

    Misperceptions regarding persons with brain injuries (PWBI) can lead to stigmatization, workplace discrimination and, in turn, influence PWBIs full vocational integration. In this study we explored how stigma may influence return-to-work processes, experiences of stigma and discrimination at the workplace for persons with (moderate to severe) brain injuries, and strategies that can be employed to manage disclosure. Exploratory qualitative study; used in-depth interviews and an inductive thematic analytical approach in data analysis. Ten PWBI and five employment service providers participated. PWBI discussed their work experiences, relationships with supervisors and co-workers and experiences of stigma and/or discrimination at work. Employment service providers discussed their perceptions regarding PWBI's rights and abilities to work, reported incidents of workplace discrimination, and how issues related to stigma, discrimination and disclosure are managed. Three themes were identified: i) public, employer and provider knowledge about brain injury and beliefs about PWBI; ii) incidents of workplace discrimination; iii) disclosure. Misperceptions regarding PWBI persist amongst the public and employers. Incidents of workplace discrimination included social exclusion at the workplace, hiring discrimination, denial of promotion/demotion, harassment, and failure to provide reasonable accommodations. Disclosure decisions required careful consideration of PWBI needs, the type of information that should be shared, and the context in which that information is shared. Public understanding about PWBI remains limited. PWBI require further assistance to manage disclosure and incidents of workplace discrimination.

  17. Food Sharing among Hadza Hunter-Gatherer Children.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alyssa N Crittenden

    Full Text Available Human prosociality is one of the defining characteristics of our species, yet the ontogeny of altruistic behavior remains poorly understood. The evolution of widespread food sharing in humans helped shape cooperation, family formation, life history, language, and the development of economies of scale. While the behavioral and ecological correlates of food sharing among adults are widely studied, very little is known about food sharing among children. Here, in the first study to analyze the food sharing patterns of hunter-gatherer children, we show that while sharing may be biased towards kin, reciprocity characterizes the majority of all sharing dyads, both related and unrelated. These data lend support to the recent claim that discrimination among kin might be linked with reciprocal altruism theory. Furthermore, we show that age positively correlates with an increase in sharing, both in frequency and amount, supporting recent suggestions that prosocial behaviors and egalitarianism develop strongly in middle childhood when children acquire the normative rules of their society.

  18. Food Sharing among Hadza Hunter-Gatherer Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crittenden, Alyssa N; Zes, David A

    2015-01-01

    Human prosociality is one of the defining characteristics of our species, yet the ontogeny of altruistic behavior remains poorly understood. The evolution of widespread food sharing in humans helped shape cooperation, family formation, life history, language, and the development of economies of scale. While the behavioral and ecological correlates of food sharing among adults are widely studied, very little is known about food sharing among children. Here, in the first study to analyze the food sharing patterns of hunter-gatherer children, we show that while sharing may be biased towards kin, reciprocity characterizes the majority of all sharing dyads, both related and unrelated. These data lend support to the recent claim that discrimination among kin might be linked with reciprocal altruism theory. Furthermore, we show that age positively correlates with an increase in sharing, both in frequency and amount, supporting recent suggestions that prosocial behaviors and egalitarianism develop strongly in middle childhood when children acquire the normative rules of their society.

  19. Low-dose caffeine discrimination and self-reported mood effects in normal volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverman, K; Griffiths, R R

    1992-01-01

    A caffeine versus placebo discrimination procedure was used to determine the lowest caffeine dose that could produce discrimination and self-reported mood effects in normal volunteers. During daily sessions under double-blind conditions, caffeine-abstinent subjects orally ingested a capsule containing 178 mg caffeine or placebo. Before beginning discrimination training, the compounds were identified to subjects by letter codes. Fifteen, 30, and 45 min after capsule ingestion, subjects guessed the capsule's letter code. Correct guesses at 45 min earned money. After each session, subjects received a supplementary capsule containing caffeine or placebo to ensure that, within each phase of the study, subjects received the same daily dose of caffeine equal to the training dose. Five of the 15 subjects acquired the caffeine versus placebo discrimination within the first 20 sessions (greater than or equal to 75% correct); 6 other subjects acquired the discrimination with additional training. Nine subjects who acquired the discrimination were subsequently trained at progressively lower caffeine doses. In general, the lowest dose to produce discrimination (greater than or equal to 75% correct) was also the lowest dose to produce self-reported mood effects: 4 subjects showed discrimination and self-reported mood effects at 100 mg caffeine, 2 at 56 mg, 1 at 32 mg, and 1 at 18 mg. One of these subjects also showed self-reported mood effects at 10 mg. The present study documents discriminative stimulus and self-reported mood effects of caffeine at doses below those previously shown to affect any behavior in normal volunteers. PMID:1548451

  20. Rapid deterioration of pain sensory-discriminative information in short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rainville, Pierre; Doucet, Jean-Charles; Fortin, Marie-Chantale; Duncan, Gary H

    2004-08-01

    The assessment of pain and analgesic efficacy sometimes relies on the retrospective evaluation of pain felt in the immediate, recent or distant past, yet we have a very limited understanding of the processes involved in the encoding, maintenance and intentional retrieval of pain. We examine the properties of the short-term memory of thermal and pain sensation intensity with a delayed-discrimination task using pairs of heat pain, warm and cool stimulation in healthy volunteers. Performance decreased as a function of the inter-stimulus interval (ISI), indicating a robust deterioration of sensory information over the test period of 4-14 s. As expected, performance also decreased with smaller temperature differences (Delta-T) and shorter stimulus durations (6-2 s). The relation between performance and Delta-T was adequately described by a power function, the exponent of which increased linearly with longer ISI. Importantly, performance declined steadily with increasing ISI (from 6 to 14 s)--but only for pairs of heat pain stimuli that were relatively difficult to discriminate (Delta-T short-term memory for pain and temperature sensation intensity relies on a transient analog representation that is quickly degraded and transformed into a more resistant but less precise categorical format. This implies that retrospective pain ratings obtained even after very short delays may be rather inaccurate but relatively reliable.

  1. Separate and combined effects of the GABAA positive allosteric modulator diazepam and Δ⁹-THC in humans discriminating Δ⁹-THC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lile, Joshua A; Kelly, Thomas H; Hays, Lon R

    2014-10-01

    Our previous research suggested the involvement of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), in particular the GABAB receptor subtype, in the interoceptive effects of Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC). The aim of the present study was to determine the potential involvement of the GABAA receptor subtype by assessing the separate and combined effects of the GABAA positive allosteric modulator diazepam and Δ(9)-THC using pharmacologically selective drug-discrimination procedures. Ten cannabis users learned to discriminate 30 mg oral Δ(9)-THC from placebo and then received diazepam (5 and 10mg), Δ(9)-THC (5, 15 and 30 mg) and placebo, alone and in combination. Self-report, task performance and physiological measures were also collected. Δ(9)-THC functioned as a discriminative stimulus, produced subjective effects typically associated with cannabinoids (e.g., High, Stoned, Like Drug) and elevated heart rate. Diazepam alone impaired performance on psychomotor performance tasks and increased ratings on a limited number of self-report questionnaire items (e.g., Any Effect, Sedated), but did not substitute for the Δ(9)-THC discriminative stimulus or alter the Δ(9)-THC discrimination dose-response function. Similarly, diazepam had limited impact on the other behavioral effects of Δ(9)-THC. These results suggest that the GABAA receptor subtype has minimal involvement in the interoceptive effects of Δ(9)-THC, and by extension cannabis, in humans. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Deep cerebellar nuclei play an important role in two-tone discrimination on delay eyeblink conditioning in C57BL/6 mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toshiro Sakamoto

    Full Text Available Previous studies have shown that deep cerebellar nuclei (DCN-lesioned mice develop conditioned responses (CR on delay eyeblink conditioning when a salient tone conditioned stimulus (CS is used, which suggests that the cerebellum potentially plays a role in more complicated cognitive functions. In the present study, we examined the role of DCN in tone frequency discrimination in the delay eyeblink-conditioning paradigm. In the first experiment, DCN-lesioned and sham-operated mice were subjected to standard simple eyeblink conditioning under low-frequency tone CS (LCS: 1 kHz, 80 dB or high-frequency tone CS (HCS: 10 kHz, 70 dB conditions. DCN-lesioned mice developed CR in both CS conditions as well as sham-operated mice. In the second experiment, DCN-lesioned and sham-operated mice were subjected to two-tone discrimination tasks, with LCS+ (or HCS+ paired with unconditioned stimulus (US, and HCS- (or LCS- without US. CR% in sham-operated mice increased in LCS+ (or HCS+ trials, regardless of tone frequency of CS, but not in HCS- (or LCS- trials. The results indicate that sham-operated mice can discriminate between LCS+ and HCS- (or HCS+ and LCS-. In contrast, DCN-lesioned mice showed high CR% in not only LCS+ (or HCS+ trials but also HCS- (or LCS- trials. The results indicate that DCN lesions impair the discrimination between tone frequency in eyeblink conditioning. Our results suggest that the cerebellum plays a pivotal role in the discrimination of tone frequency.

  3. Effects of stimulus salience on touchscreen serial reversal learning in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickson, Price E.; Corkill, Beau; McKimm, Eric; Miller, Mellessa M.; Calton, Michele A.; Goldowitz, Daniel; Blaha, Charles D.; Mittleman, Guy

    2013-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common inherited form of intellectual disability in males and the most common genetic cause of autism. Although executive dysfunction is consistently found in humans with FXS, evidence of executive dysfunction in Fmr1 KO mice, a mouse model of FXS, has been inconsistent. One possible explanation for this is that executive dysfunction in Fmr1 KO mice, similar to humans with FXS, is only evident when cognitive demands are high. Using touchscreen operant conditioning chambers, male Fmr1 KO mice and their male wildtype littermates were tested on the acquisition of a pairwise visual discrimination followed by four serial reversals of the response rule. We assessed reversal learning performance under two different conditions. In the first, the correct stimulus was salient and the incorrect stimulus was non-salient. In the second and more challenging condition, the incorrect stimulus was salient and the correct stimulus was non-salient; this increased cognitive load by introducing conflict between sensory-driven (i.e., bottom-up) and task-dependent (i.e., top-down) signals. Fmr1 KOs displayed two distinct impairments relative to wildtype littermates. First, Fmr1 KOs committed significantly more learning-type errors during the second reversal stage, but only under high cognitive load. Second, during the first reversal stage, Fmr1 KOs committed significantly more attempts to collect a reward during the timeout following an incorrect response. These findings indicate that Fmr1 KO mice display executive dysfunction that, in some cases, is only evident under high cognitive load. PMID:23747611

  4. Non-Discriminating Arguments and Their Uses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Henning; Gallagher, John Patrick

    2009-01-01

    We present a technique for identifying predicate arguments that play no role in determining the control flow of a logic program with respect to goals satisfying given mode and sharing restrictions.  We call such arguments non-discriminating arguments. We show that such arguments can be detected...... by an automatic analysis. Following this, we define a transformation procedure, called discriminator slicing, that removes the non-discriminating arguments, resulting in a program whose computation trees are isomorphic to those of the original program.  Finally, we show how the results of the original program can...... be reconstructed from trace of the transformed program with the original arguments.   Thus the overall result is a two-stage execution of a program, which can be applied usefully in several contexts;  we describe a case study in optimising computations in the probabilistic logic program language PRISM, and discuss...

  5. Stimulus Probability Effects in Absolute Identification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Christopher; Lamberts, Koen

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the effect of stimulus presentation probability on accuracy and response times in an absolute identification task. Three schedules of presentation were used to investigate the interaction between presentation probability and stimulus position within the set. Data from individual participants indicated strong effects of…

  6. Globalization and Risk Sharing

    OpenAIRE

    Jaume Ventura; Fernando A. Broner

    2006-01-01

    We study the effects of globalization on risk sharing and welfare. Like the previous literature, we assume that governments cannot commit to enforce the repayment of debts owed by their citizens. Unlike the previous literature, we assume that governments cannot discriminate between domestic and foreign creditors when enforcing debt payments. This creates novel interactions between domestic and international trade in assets. (i) Increases in domestic trade raise the benefits of enforcement and...

  7. Discourses of Roma Anti-Discrimination in Reports on Human Rights Violations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chloë Delcour

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available In an effort to understand the paradox between the expansion of inclusion projects for the Roma and their persisting exclusion, this article explores human rights practice in order to grasp the complexity of meanings of inclusion negotiated in this practice. In this way, we scrutinize whether there are limiting factors within the inclusionary discourse itself. Specifically, we analyze the discourse in transnational judicial, political and civil society actors’ reports on violations of human rights against Roma. A strong shared tendency to frame the violations in terms of discrimination can be discerned in the reports, demonstrating a dominant concept in the human rights discourse for Roma. However, a framing analysis of the underlying assumptions of this concept shows that not all three actors offer the same solutions for obtaining non-discrimination, which can partly explain the limited impact of the ostensibly strong and inclusive anti-discrimination discourse. In contrast, the actors do share a negative attribution of responsibility to the nation states, but the effectiveness of this shared discursive claim can be questioned. This article illustrates how inclusion discourses are actually quite complex to grasp and so it substantiates the need for greater critical understanding of such discourses in further research.

  8. Dissociating Perceptual Confidence from Discrimination Accuracy Reveals No Influence of Metacognitive Awareness on Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samaha, Jason; Barrett, John J; Sheldon, Andrew D; LaRocque, Joshua J; Postle, Bradley R

    2016-01-01

    Visual awareness is hypothesized to be intimately related to visual working memory (WM), such that information present in WM is thought to have necessarily been represented consciously. Recent work has challenged this longstanding view by demonstrating that visual stimuli rated by observers as unseen can nevertheless be maintained over a delay period. These experiments have been criticized, however, on the basis that subjective awareness ratings may contain response bias (e.g., an observer may report no awareness when in fact they had partial awareness). We mitigated this issue by investigating WM for visual stimuli that were matched for perceptual discrimination capacity (d'), yet which varied in subjective confidence ratings (so-called relative blindsight). If the degree of initial subjective awareness of a stimulus facilitates later maintenance of that information, WM performance should improve for stimuli encoded with higher confidence. In contrast, we found that WM performance did not benefit from higher visual discrimination confidence. This relationship was observed regardless of WM load (1 or 3). Insofar as metacognitive ratings (e.g., confidence, visibility) reflect visual awareness, these results challenge a strong relationship between conscious perception and WM using a paradigm that controls for discrimination accuracy and is less subject to response bias (since confidence is manipulated within subjects). Methodologically, we replicate prior efforts to induce relative blindsight using similar stimulus displays, providing a general framework for isolating metacognitive awareness in order to examine the function of consciousness.

  9. Dissociating perceptual confidence from discrimination accuracy reveals no influence of metacognitive awareness on working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason eSamaha

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Visual awareness is hypothesized to be intimately related to visual working memory (WM, such that information present in WM is thought to have necessarily been represented consciously. Recent work has challenged this longstanding view by demonstrating that visual stimuli rated by observers as unseen can nevertheless be maintained over a delay period. These experiments have been criticized, however, on the basis that subjective awareness ratings may contain response bias (e.g., an observer may report no awareness when in fact they had partial awareness. We mitigated this issue by investigating WM for visual stimuli that were matched for perceptual discrimination capacity (d’, yet which varied in subjective confidence ratings (so called relative blindsight. If the degree of initial subjective awareness of a stimulus facilitates later maintenance of that information, WM performance should improve for stimuli encoded with higher confidence. In contrast, we found that WM performance did not benefit from higher visual discrimination confidence. This relationship was observed regardless of WM load (1 or 3. Insofar as metacognitive ratings (e.g., confidence, visibility reflect visual awareness, these results challenge a strong relationship between conscious perception and WM using a paradigm that controls for discrimination accuracy and is less subject to response bias (since confidence is manipulated within subjects. Methodologically, we replicate prior efforts to induce relative blindsight using similar stimulus displays, providing a general framework for isolating metacognitive awareness in order to examine the function of consciousness.

  10. Differential effects of visual context on pattern discrimination by pigeons (Columba livia) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Debbie M; Cook, Robert G

    2003-06-01

    Three experiment examined the role of contextual information during line orientation and line position discriminations by pigeons (Columba livia) and humans (Homo sapiens). Experiment 1 tested pigeons' performance with these stimuli in a target localization task using texture displays. Experiments 2 and 3 tested pigeons and humans, respectively, with small and large variations of these stimuli in a same-different task. Humans showed a configural superiority effect when tested with displays constructed from large elements but not when tested with the smaller, more densely packed texture displays. The pigeons, in contrast, exhibited a configural inferiority effect when required to discriminate line orientation, regardless of stimulus size. These contrasting results suggest a species difference in the perceptionand use of features and contextual information in the discrimination of line information.

  11. Background Paper for the Expert Meeting on the Gender-Related Aspects of Race Discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberlé Crenshaw

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Neither the gender aspects of racial discrimination nor the racial aspects of gender discrimination are fully comprehended within human rights discourses. Building on the growing recognition that race and gender discrimination are not mutually exclusive phenomena, this background paper forwards a provisional framework to identify various forms of subordination that can be said to reflect the interactive effects of race and gender discrimination. It suggests a provisional protocol to be followed to better identify the occasions in which such interactive discrimination may have occurred, and posits further that the responsibility to address the causes and consequences of such discrimination be shared widely among all human rights institutions.

  12. Prestimulus alpha-band power biases visual discrimination confidence, but not accuracy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samaha, Jason; Iemi, Luca; Postle, Bradley R

    2017-09-01

    The magnitude of power in the alpha-band (8-13Hz) of the electroencephalogram (EEG) prior to the onset of a near threshold visual stimulus predicts performance. Together with other findings, this has been interpreted as evidence that alpha-band dynamics reflect cortical excitability. We reasoned, however, that non-specific changes in excitability would be expected to influence signal and noise in the same way, leaving actual discriminability unchanged. Indeed, using a two-choice orientation discrimination task, we found that discrimination accuracy was unaffected by fluctuations in prestimulus alpha power. Decision confidence, on the other hand, was strongly negatively correlated with prestimulus alpha power. This finding constitutes a clear dissociation between objective and subjective measures of visual perception as a function of prestimulus cortical excitability. This dissociation is predicted by a model where the balance of evidence supporting each choice drives objective performance but only the magnitude of evidence supporting the selected choice drives subjective reports, suggesting that human perceptual confidence can be suboptimal with respect to tracking objective accuracy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Effects of Vigabatrin, an Irreversible GABA Transaminase Inhibitor, on Ethanol Reinforcement and Ethanol Discriminative Stimuli in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, William C.; Nguyen, Shaun A.; Deleon, Christopher P.; Middaugh, Lawrence D.

    2012-01-01

    We tested the hypothesis that the irreversible gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA) transaminase inhibitor, γ-vinyl GABA (Vigabatrin; VGB) would reduce ethanol reinforcement and enhance the discriminative stimulus effect of ethanol, effectively reducing ethanol intake. The present studies used adult C57BL/6J (B6) mice in well-established operant, two-bottle choice consumption, locomotor activity and ethanol discrimination procedures, to examine comprehensively the effects of VGB on ethanol-supported behaviors. VGB dose-dependently reduced operant responding for ethanol as well as ethanol consumption for long periods of time. Importantly, a low dose (200 mg/kg) of VGB was selective for reducing ethanol responding without altering intake of food or water reinforcement. Higher VGB doses (>200 mg/kg) still reduced ethanol intake, but also significantly increased water consumption and, more modestly, increased food consumption. While not affecting locomotor activity on its own, VGB interacted with ethanol to reduce the stimulatory effects of ethanol on locomotion. Finally, VGB (200 mg/kg) significantly enhanced the discriminative stimulus effects of ethanol as evidenced by significant left-ward and up-ward shifts in ethanol generalization curves. Interestingly, VGB treatment was associated with slight increases in blood ethanol concentrations. The reduction in ethanol intake by VGB appears to be related to the ability of VGB to potentiate the pharmacological effects of ethanol. PMID:22336593

  14. Bilateral lesions of nucleus subpretectalis/interstitio-pretecto-subpretectalis (SP/IPS) selectively impair figure-ground discrimination in pigeons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scully, Erin N; Acerbo, Martin J; Lazareva, Olga F

    2014-01-01

    Earlier, we reported that nucleus rotundus (Rt) together with its inhibitory complex, nucleus subpretectalis/interstitio-pretecto-subpretectalis (SP/IPS), had significantly higher activity in pigeons performing figure-ground discrimination than in the control group that did not perform any visual discriminations. In contrast, color discrimination produced significantly higher activity than control in the Rt but not in the SP/IPS. Finally, shape discrimination produced significantly lower activity than control in both the Rt and the SP/IPS. In this study, we trained pigeons to simultaneously perform three visual discriminations (figure-ground, color, and shape) using the same stimulus displays. When birds learned to perform all three tasks concurrently at high levels of accuracy, we conducted bilateral chemical lesions of the SP/IPS. After a period of recovery, the birds were retrained on the same tasks to evaluate the effect of lesions on maintenance of these discriminations. We found that the lesions of the SP/IPS had no effect on color or shape discrimination and that they significantly impaired figure-ground discrimination. Together with our earlier data, these results suggest that the nucleus Rt and the SP/IPS are the key structures involved in figure-ground discrimination. These results also imply that thalamic processing is critical for figure-ground segregation in avian brain.

  15. Reaction times and face discrimination with emotional content

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANA MARÍA MARTÍNEZ

    2002-07-01

    Full Text Available Sixty-two university subjects students located in two groups, with a stocking of age of 21.6 for thegroup of women and 22 for the group of men with the purpose to carry out a study upon visual timesof reaction TRV with emotional content keeping in mind the position: start, half and end; the emotionalcontent: neutral, friendly and threatening; and the combinations of the stimuli. The group of womenI present TR more prolonged than that of the men in all the experimental conditions. Also it wasobserved, that more are prolonged when the stimulus to discriminate this located in the half so muchin men as women.

  16. Acoustic characteristics used by Japanese macaques for individual discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furuyama, Takafumi; Kobayasi, Kohta I; Riquimaroux, Hiroshi

    2017-10-01

    The vocalizations of primates contain information about speaker individuality. Many primates, including humans, are able to distinguish conspecifics based solely on vocalizations. The purpose of this study was to investigate the acoustic characteristics used by Japanese macaques in individual vocal discrimination. Furthermore, we tested human subjects using monkey vocalizations to evaluate species specificity with respect to such discriminations. Two monkeys and five humans were trained to discriminate the coo calls of two unfamiliar monkeys. We created a stimulus continuum between the vocalizations of the two monkeys as a set of probe stimuli (whole morph). We also created two sets of continua in which only one acoustic parameter, fundamental frequency ( f 0 ) or vocal tract characteristic (VTC), was changed from the coo call of one monkey to that of another while the other acoustic feature remained the same ( f 0 morph and VTC morph, respectively). According to the results, the reaction times both of monkeys and humans were correlated with the morph proportion under the whole morph and f 0 morph conditions. The reaction time to the VTC morph was correlated with the morph proportion in both monkeys, whereas the reaction time in humans, on average, was not correlated with morph proportion. Japanese monkeys relied more consistently on VTC than did humans for discriminating monkey vocalizations. Our results support the idea that the auditory system of primates is specialized for processing conspecific vocalizations and suggest that VTC is a significant acoustic feature used by Japanese macaques to discriminate conspecific vocalizations. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  17. Dissociable brain systems mediate vicarious learning of stimulus-response and action-outcome contingencies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liljeholm, Mimi; Molloy, Ciara J; O'Doherty, John P

    2012-07-18

    Two distinct strategies have been suggested to support action selection in humans and other animals on the basis of experiential learning: a goal-directed strategy that generates decisions based on the value and causal antecedents of action outcomes, and a habitual strategy that relies on the automatic elicitation of actions by environmental stimuli. In the present study, we investigated whether a similar dichotomy exists for actions that are acquired vicariously, through observation of other individuals rather than through direct experience, and assessed whether these strategies are mediated by distinct brain regions. We scanned participants with functional magnetic resonance imaging while they performed an observational learning task designed to encourage either goal-directed encoding of the consequences of observed actions, or a mapping of observed actions to conditional discriminative cues. Activity in different parts of the action observation network discriminated between the two conditions during observational learning and correlated with the degree of insensitivity to outcome devaluation in subsequent performance. Our findings suggest that, in striking parallel to experiential learning, neural systems mediating the observational acquisition of actions may be dissociated into distinct components: a goal-directed, outcome-sensitive component and a less flexible stimulus-response component.

  18. Integration of Visual and Vestibular Information Used to Discriminate Rotational Self-Motion

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    Florian Soyka

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Do humans integrate visual and vestibular information in a statistically optimal fashion when discriminating rotational self-motion stimuli? Recent studies are inconclusive as to whether such integration occurs when discriminating heading direction. In the present study eight participants were consecutively rotated twice (2s sinusoidal acceleration on a chair about an earth-vertical axis in vestibular-only, visual-only and visual-vestibular trials. The visual stimulus was a video of a moving stripe pattern, synchronized with the inertial motion. Peak acceleration of the reference stimulus was varied and participants reported which rotation was perceived as faster. Just-noticeable differences (JND were estimated by fitting psychometric functions. The visual-vestibular JND measurements are too high compared to the predictions based on the unimodal JND estimates and there is no JND reduction between visual-vestibular and visual-alone estimates. These findings may be explained by visual capture. Alternatively, the visual precision may not be equal between visual-vestibular and visual-alone conditions, since it has been shown that visual motion sensitivity is reduced during inertial self-motion. Therefore, measuring visual-alone JNDs with an underlying uncorrelated inertial motion might yield higher visual-alone JNDs compared to the stationary measurement. Theoretical calculations show that higher visual-alone JNDs would result in predictions consistent with the JND measurements for the visual-vestibular condition.

  19. Discrimination of holograms and real objects by pigeons (Columba livia) and humans (Homo sapiens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephan, Claudia; Steurer, Michael M; Aust, Ulrike

    2014-08-01

    The type of stimulus material employed in visual tasks is crucial to all comparative cognition research that involves object recognition. There is considerable controversy about the use of 2-dimensional stimuli and the impact that the lack of the 3rd dimension (i.e., depth) may have on animals' performance in tests for their visual and cognitive abilities. We report evidence of discrimination learning using a completely novel type of stimuli, namely, holograms. Like real objects, holograms provide full 3-dimensional shape information but they also offer many possibilities for systematically modifying the appearance of a stimulus. Hence, they provide a promising means for investigating visual perception and cognition of different species in a comparative way. We trained pigeons and humans to discriminate either between 2 real objects or between holograms of the same 2 objects, and we subsequently tested both species for the transfer of discrimination to the other presentation mode. The lack of any decrements in accuracy suggests that real objects and holograms were perceived as equivalent in both species and shows the general appropriateness of holograms as stimuli in visual tasks. A follow-up experiment involving the presentation of novel views of the training objects and holograms revealed some interspecies differences in rotational invariance, thereby confirming and extending the results of previous studies. Taken together, these results suggest that holograms may not only provide a promising tool for investigating yet unexplored issues, but their use may also lead to novel insights into some crucial aspects of comparative visual perception and categorization.

  20. Development of vicarious trial-and-error behavior in odor discrimination learning in the rat: relation to hippocampal function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, D; Griesbach, G; Amsel, A

    1997-06-01

    Previous work from our laboratory has suggested that hippocampal electrolytic lesions result in a deficit in simultaneous, black-white discrimination learning and reduce the frequency of vicarious trial-and-error (VTE) at a choice-point. VTE is a term Tolman used to describe the rat's conflict-like behavior, moving its head from one stimulus to the other at a choice point, and has been proposed as a major nonspatial feature of hippocampal function in both visual and olfactory discrimination learning. Simultaneous odor discrimination and VTE behavior were examined at three different ages. The results were that 16-day-old pups made fewer VTEs and learned much more slowly than 30- and 60-day-olds, a finding in accord with levels of hippocampal maturity in the rat.

  1. Spatiotemporal Dynamics of Cortical Representations during and after Stimulus Presentation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marieke Esther van de Nieuwenhuijzen

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Visual perception is a spatiotemporally complex process. In this study, we investigated cortical dynamics during and after stimulus presentation. We observed that visual category information related to the difference between faces and objects became apparent in the occipital lobe after 63 ms. Within the next 110 ms, activation spread out to include the temporal lobe before returning to residing mainly in the occipital lobe again. After stimulus offset, a peak in information was observed, comparable to the peak after stimulus onset. Moreover, similar processes, albeit not identical, seemed to underlie both peaks. Information about the categorical identity of the stimulus remained present until 677 ms after stimulus offset, during which period the stimulus had to be retained in working memory. Activation patterns initially resembled those observed during stimulus presentation. After about 200 ms, however, this representation changed and class-specific activity became more equally distributed over the four lobes. These results show that, although there are common processes underlying stimulus representation both during and after stimulus presentation, these representations change depending on the specific stage of perception and maintenance.

  2. Are preference and resistance to change convergent expressions of stimulus value?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podlesnik, Christopher A; Jimenez-Gomez, Corina; Shahan, Timothy A

    2013-07-01

    Behavioral momentum theory asserts that preference and relative resistance to disruption depend on reinforcement rates and provide converging expressions of the conditioned value of discriminative stimuli. However, preference and resistance to disruption diverge when assessing preference during brief extinction probes. We expanded upon this opposing relation by arranging target stimuli signaling equal variable-interval schedules across components of a multiple schedule. We paired one target stimulus with a richer reinforced alternative and the other with a leaner alternative. Furthermore, we varied reinforcement rates for the paired alternatives to assess the effects of manipulating relative conditioned value on preference and resistance to disruption by presession feeding, intercomponent food, and extinction. We replicated the opposing relation between preference and resistance to disruption but varying reinforcement rates for the paired alternatives did not systematically affect preference or resistance to disruption beyond levels observed in our initial condition. Importantly, we found that only preference between the target stimuli was related to relative baseline response rates in the presence of those stimuli. These findings suggest that preference during extinction probes might reveal more about baseline response rates between concurrently available alternatives than relative conditioned value. Resistance to disruption, conversely, appears to better reflect conditioned value because it is less confounded with baseline response rates and is a function of all sources of reinforcement obtained in the presence of a stimulus context. © Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  3. Aversive reinforcement improves visual discrimination learning in free-flying honeybees.

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    Aurore Avarguès-Weber

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Learning and perception of visual stimuli by free-flying honeybees has been shown to vary dramatically depending on the way insects are trained. Fine color discrimination is achieved when both a target and a distractor are present during training (differential conditioning, whilst if the same target is learnt in isolation (absolute conditioning, discrimination is coarse and limited to perceptually dissimilar alternatives. Another way to potentially enhance discrimination is to increase the penalty associated with the distractor. Here we studied whether coupling the distractor with a highly concentrated quinine solution improves color discrimination of both similar and dissimilar colors by free-flying honeybees. As we assumed that quinine acts as an aversive stimulus, we analyzed whether aversion, if any, is based on an aversive sensory input at the gustatory level or on a post-ingestional malaise following quinine feeding. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We show that the presence of a highly concentrated quinine solution (60 mM acts as an aversive reinforcer promoting rejection of the target associated with it, and improving discrimination of perceptually similar stimuli but not of dissimilar stimuli. Free-flying bees did not use remote cues to detect the presence of quinine solution; the aversive effect exerted by this substance was mediated via a gustatory input, i.e. via a distasteful sensory experience, rather than via a post-ingestional malaise. CONCLUSION: The present study supports the hypothesis that aversion conditioning is important for understanding how and what animals perceive and learn. By using this form of conditioning coupled with appetitive conditioning in the framework of a differential conditioning procedure, it is possible to uncover discrimination capabilities that may remain otherwise unsuspected. We show, therefore, that visual discrimination is not an absolute phenomenon but can be modulated by experience.

  4. Pavlovian conditioning enhances resistance to disruption of dogs performing an odor discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Nathaniel J; Smith, David W; Wynne, Clive D L

    2015-05-01

    Domestic dogs are used to aid in the detection of a variety of substances such as narcotics and explosives. Under real-world detection situations there are many variables that may disrupt the dog's performance. Prior research on behavioral momentum theory suggests that higher rates of reinforcement produce greater resistance to disruption, and that this is heavily influenced by the stimulus-reinforcer relationship. The present study tests the Pavlovian interpretation of resistance to change using dogs engaged in an odor discrimination task. Dogs were trained on two odor discriminations that alternated every six trials akin to a multiple schedule in which the reinforcement probability for a correct response was always 1. Dogs then received several sessions of either odor Pavlovian conditioning to the S+ of one odor discrimination (Pavlovian group) or explicitly unpaired exposure to the S+ of one odor discrimination (Unpaired group). The remaining odor discrimination pair for each dog always remained an unexposed control. Resistance to disruption was assessed under presession feeding, a food-odor disruptor condition, and extinction, with baseline sessions intervening between disruption conditions. Equivalent baseline detection rates were observed across experimental groups and odorant pairs. Under disruption conditions, Pavlovian conditioning led to enhanced resistance to disruption of detection performance compared to the unexposed control odor discrimination. Unpaired odor conditioning did not influence resistance to disruption. These results suggest that changes in Pavlovian contingencies are sufficient to influence resistance to change. © Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  5. Visual discrimination training improves Humphrey perimetry in chronic cortically induced blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanaugh, Matthew R; Huxlin, Krystel R

    2017-05-09

    To assess if visual discrimination training improves performance on visual perimetry tests in chronic stroke patients with visual cortex involvement. 24-2 and 10-2 Humphrey visual fields were analyzed for 17 chronic cortically blind stroke patients prior to and following visual discrimination training, as well as in 5 untrained, cortically blind controls. Trained patients practiced direction discrimination, orientation discrimination, or both, at nonoverlapping, blind field locations. All pretraining and posttraining discrimination performance and Humphrey fields were collected with online eye tracking, ensuring gaze-contingent stimulus presentation. Trained patients recovered ∼108 degrees 2 of vision on average, while untrained patients spontaneously improved over an area of ∼16 degrees 2 . Improvement was not affected by patient age, time since lesion, size of initial deficit, or training type, but was proportional to the amount of training performed. Untrained patients counterbalanced their improvements with worsening of sensitivity over ∼9 degrees 2 of their visual field. Worsening was minimal in trained patients. Finally, although discrimination performance improved at all trained locations, changes in Humphrey sensitivity occurred both within trained regions and beyond, extending over a larger area along the blind field border. In adults with chronic cortical visual impairment, the blind field border appears to have enhanced plastic potential, which can be recruited by gaze-controlled visual discrimination training to expand the visible field. Our findings underscore a critical need for future studies to measure the effects of vision restoration approaches on perimetry in larger cohorts of patients. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. on behalf of the American Academy of Neurology.

  6. Visually induced gains in pitch discrimination: Linking audio-visual processing with auditory abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Møller, Cecilie; Højlund, Andreas; Bærentsen, Klaus B; Hansen, Niels Chr; Skewes, Joshua C; Vuust, Peter

    2018-05-01

    Perception is fundamentally a multisensory experience. The principle of inverse effectiveness (PoIE) states how the multisensory gain is maximal when responses to the unisensory constituents of the stimuli are weak. It is one of the basic principles underlying multisensory processing of spatiotemporally corresponding crossmodal stimuli that are well established at behavioral as well as neural levels. It is not yet clear, however, how modality-specific stimulus features influence discrimination of subtle changes in a crossmodally corresponding feature belonging to another modality. Here, we tested the hypothesis that reliance on visual cues to pitch discrimination follow the PoIE at the interindividual level (i.e., varies with varying levels of auditory-only pitch discrimination abilities). Using an oddball pitch discrimination task, we measured the effect of varying visually perceived vertical position in participants exhibiting a wide range of pitch discrimination abilities (i.e., musicians and nonmusicians). Visual cues significantly enhanced pitch discrimination as measured by the sensitivity index d', and more so in the crossmodally congruent than incongruent condition. The magnitude of gain caused by compatible visual cues was associated with individual pitch discrimination thresholds, as predicted by the PoIE. This was not the case for the magnitude of the congruence effect, which was unrelated to individual pitch discrimination thresholds, indicating that the pitch-height association is robust to variations in auditory skills. Our findings shed light on individual differences in multisensory processing by suggesting that relevant multisensory information that crucially aids some perceivers' performance may be of less importance to others, depending on their unisensory abilities.

  7. The right planum temporale is involved in stimulus-driven, auditory attention--evidence from transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Hirnstein

    Full Text Available It is well known that the planum temporale (PT area in the posterior temporal lobe carries out spectro-temporal analysis of auditory stimuli, which is crucial for speech, for example. There are suggestions that the PT is also involved in auditory attention, specifically in the discrimination and selection of stimuli from the left and right ear. However, direct evidence is missing so far. To examine the role of the PT in auditory attention we asked fourteen participants to complete the Bergen Dichotic Listening Test. In this test two different consonant-vowel syllables (e.g., "ba" and "da" are presented simultaneously, one to each ear, and participants are asked to verbally report the syllable they heard best or most clearly. Thus attentional selection of a syllable is stimulus-driven. Each participant completed the test three times: after their left and right PT (located with anatomical brain scans had been stimulated with repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS, which transiently interferes with normal brain functioning in the stimulated sites, and after sham stimulation, where participants were led to believe they had been stimulated but no rTMS was applied (control. After sham stimulation the typical right ear advantage emerged, that is, participants reported relatively more right than left ear syllables, reflecting a left-hemispheric dominance for language. rTMS over the right but not left PT significantly reduced the right ear advantage. This was the result of participants reporting more left and fewer right ear syllables after right PT stimulation, suggesting there was a leftward shift in stimulus selection. Taken together, our findings point to a new function of the PT in addition to auditory perception: particularly the right PT is involved in stimulus selection and (stimulus-driven, auditory attention.

  8. Intranasal localizability of odorants: influence of stimulus volume.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frasnelli, J; Hummel, T; Berg, J; Huang, G; Doty, R L

    2011-05-01

    When an odorant is presented to one side of the nose and air to the other, the ability to localize which side received the odorant depends upon trigeminal nerve stimulation. It has been shown that performance on this lateralization task increases as stimulus concentration increases. In this study, we determined the influences of stimulus volume and sex on the ability to localize each of 8 odorants presented at neat concentrations: anethole, geraniol, limonene, linalool, menthol, methyl salicylate, phenyl ethanol, and vanillin. At a low stimulus volume (11 mL), only menthol was localized at an above-chance level. At a high stimulus volume (21 mL), above-chance localization occurred for all odorants except vanillin. Women were significantly better than men in localizing menthol. Stimuli rated as most intense were those that were most readily localized. The detection performance measures, as well as rated intensity values, significantly correlated with earlier findings of the trigeminal detectability of odorants presented to anosmic and normosmic subjects. This study suggests that differences in stimulus volume may explain some discrepant findings within the trigeminal chemosensory literature and supports the concept that vanillin may be a "relatively pure" olfactory stimulus.

  9. Interpretation of correlated neural variability from models of feed-forward and recurrent circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-01-01

    Neural populations respond to the repeated presentations of a sensory stimulus with correlated variability. These correlations have been studied in detail, with respect to their mechanistic origin, as well as their influence on stimulus discrimination and on the performance of population codes. A number of theoretical studies have endeavored to link network architecture to the nature of the correlations in neural activity. Here, we contribute to this effort: in models of circuits of stochastic neurons, we elucidate the implications of various network architectures—recurrent connections, shared feed-forward projections, and shared gain fluctuations—on the stimulus dependence in correlations. Specifically, we derive mathematical relations that specify the dependence of population-averaged covariances on firing rates, for different network architectures. In turn, these relations can be used to analyze data on population activity. We examine recordings from neural populations in mouse auditory cortex. We find that a recurrent network model with random effective connections captures the observed statistics. Furthermore, using our circuit model, we investigate the relation between network parameters, correlations, and how well different stimuli can be discriminated from one another based on the population activity. As such, our approach allows us to relate properties of the neural circuit to information processing. PMID:29408930

  10. Interpretation of correlated neural variability from models of feed-forward and recurrent circuits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volker Pernice

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Neural populations respond to the repeated presentations of a sensory stimulus with correlated variability. These correlations have been studied in detail, with respect to their mechanistic origin, as well as their influence on stimulus discrimination and on the performance of population codes. A number of theoretical studies have endeavored to link network architecture to the nature of the correlations in neural activity. Here, we contribute to this effort: in models of circuits of stochastic neurons, we elucidate the implications of various network architectures-recurrent connections, shared feed-forward projections, and shared gain fluctuations-on the stimulus dependence in correlations. Specifically, we derive mathematical relations that specify the dependence of population-averaged covariances on firing rates, for different network architectures. In turn, these relations can be used to analyze data on population activity. We examine recordings from neural populations in mouse auditory cortex. We find that a recurrent network model with random effective connections captures the observed statistics. Furthermore, using our circuit model, we investigate the relation between network parameters, correlations, and how well different stimuli can be discriminated from one another based on the population activity. As such, our approach allows us to relate properties of the neural circuit to information processing.

  11. Shared memories reveal shared structure in neural activity across individuals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, J.; Leong, Y.C.; Honey, C.J.; Yong, C.H.; Norman, K.A.; Hasson, U.

    2016-01-01

    Our lives revolve around sharing experiences and memories with others. When different people recount the same events, how similar are their underlying neural representations? Participants viewed a fifty-minute movie, then verbally described the events during functional MRI, producing unguided detailed descriptions lasting up to forty minutes. As each person spoke, event-specific spatial patterns were reinstated in default-network, medial-temporal, and high-level visual areas. Individual event patterns were both highly discriminable from one another and similar between people, suggesting consistent spatial organization. In many high-order areas, patterns were more similar between people recalling the same event than between recall and perception, indicating systematic reshaping of percept into memory. These results reveal the existence of a common spatial organization for memories in high-level cortical areas, where encoded information is largely abstracted beyond sensory constraints; and that neural patterns during perception are altered systematically across people into shared memory representations for real-life events. PMID:27918531

  12. Rapid discrimination of visual scene content in the human brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anokhin, Andrey P.; Golosheykin, Simon; Sirevaag, Erik; Kristjansson, Sean; Rohrbaugh, John W.; Heath, Andrew C.

    2007-01-01

    The rapid evaluation of complex visual environments is critical for an organism's adaptation and survival. Previous studies have shown that emotionally significant visual scenes, both pleasant and unpleasant, elicit a larger late positive wave in the event-related brain potential (ERP) than emotionally neutral pictures. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether neuroelectric responses elicited by complex pictures discriminate between specific, biologically relevant contents of the visual scene and to determine how early in the picture processing this discrimination occurs. Subjects (n=264) viewed 55 color slides differing in both scene content and emotional significance. No categorical judgments or responses were required. Consistent with previous studies, we found that emotionally arousing pictures, regardless of their content, produce a larger late positive wave than neutral pictures. However, when pictures were further categorized by content, anterior ERP components in a time window between 200−600 ms following stimulus onset showed a high selectivity for pictures with erotic content compared to other pictures regardless of their emotional valence (pleasant, neutral, and unpleasant) or emotional arousal. The divergence of ERPs elicited by erotic and non-erotic contents started at 185 ms post-stimulus in the fronto-central midline regions, with a later onset in parietal regions. This rapid, selective, and content-specific processing of erotic materials and its dissociation from other pictures (including emotionally positive pictures) suggests the existence of a specialized neural network for prioritized processing of a distinct category of biologically relevant stimuli with high adaptive and evolutionary significance. PMID:16712815

  13. Competition, Takeovers, and Gender Discrimination

    OpenAIRE

    Fredrik Heyman; Helena Svaleryd; Jonas Vlachos

    2013-01-01

    Theories of taste-based discrimination predict that competitive pressures will drive discriminatory behaviour out of the market. Using detailed matched employer-employee data, we analyze how firm takeovers and product market competition are related to the gender composition of the firm’s workforce and the gender wage gap. Using a difference-in-difference framework and dealing with several endogeneity concerns, we find that the share of female employees increases as a result of an ownership ch...

  14. Mutuality and solidarity: assessing risks and sharing losses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkie, D

    1997-01-01

    Mutuality is the principle of private, commercial insurance; individuals enter the pool for sharing losses, and pay according to the best estimate of the risk they bring with them. Solidarity is the sharing of losses with payment according to some other scheme; this is the principle of state social insurance; essential features of solidarity are comprehensiveness and compulsion. Private insurance is subject to the uberrima fides principle, or utmost good faith; each side declares all it knows about the risk. The Disability Discrimination Act requires insurers to justify disability discrimination on the basis of relevant information, acturial, statistical or medical, on which it is reasonable to rely. It could be very damaging to private insurance to abandon uberrima fides. However, although some genetic information is clearly useful to underwriters, other information may be so general as to be of little use. The way in which mortality rates are assessed is also explained. PMID:9304668

  15. Audiovisual Modulation in Mouse Primary Visual Cortex Depends on Cross-Modal Stimulus Configuration and Congruency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meijer, Guido T; Montijn, Jorrit S; Pennartz, Cyriel M A; Lansink, Carien S

    2017-09-06

    The sensory neocortex is a highly connected associative network that integrates information from multiple senses, even at the level of the primary sensory areas. Although a growing body of empirical evidence supports this view, the neural mechanisms of cross-modal integration in primary sensory areas, such as the primary visual cortex (V1), are still largely unknown. Using two-photon calcium imaging in awake mice, we show that the encoding of audiovisual stimuli in V1 neuronal populations is highly dependent on the features of the stimulus constituents. When the visual and auditory stimulus features were modulated at the same rate (i.e., temporally congruent), neurons responded with either an enhancement or suppression compared with unisensory visual stimuli, and their prevalence was balanced. Temporally incongruent tones or white-noise bursts included in audiovisual stimulus pairs resulted in predominant response suppression across the neuronal population. Visual contrast did not influence multisensory processing when the audiovisual stimulus pairs were congruent; however, when white-noise bursts were used, neurons generally showed response suppression when the visual stimulus contrast was high whereas this effect was absent when the visual contrast was low. Furthermore, a small fraction of V1 neurons, predominantly those located near the lateral border of V1, responded to sound alone. These results show that V1 is involved in the encoding of cross-modal interactions in a more versatile way than previously thought. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The neural substrate of cross-modal integration is not limited to specialized cortical association areas but extends to primary sensory areas. Using two-photon imaging of large groups of neurons, we show that multisensory modulation of V1 populations is strongly determined by the individual and shared features of cross-modal stimulus constituents, such as contrast, frequency, congruency, and temporal structure. Congruent

  16. Discrimination performance in aging is vulnerable to interference and dissociable from spatial memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sarah A.; Sacks, Patricia K.; Turner, Sean M.; Gaynor, Leslie S.; Ormerod, Brandi K.; Maurer, Andrew P.; Bizon, Jennifer L.

    2016-01-01

    Hippocampal-dependent episodic memory and stimulus discrimination abilities are both compromised in the elderly. The reduced capacity to discriminate between similar stimuli likely contributes to multiple aspects of age-related cognitive impairment; however, the association of these behaviors within individuals has never been examined in an animal model. In the present study, young and aged F344×BN F1 hybrid rats were cross-characterized on the Morris water maze test of spatial memory and a dentate gyrus-dependent match-to-position test of spatial discrimination ability. Aged rats showed overall impairments relative to young in spatial learning and memory on the water maze task. Although young and aged learned to apply a match-to-position response strategy in performing easy spatial discriminations within a similar number of trials, a majority of aged rats were impaired relative to young in performing difficult spatial discriminations on subsequent tests. Moreover, all aged rats were susceptible to cumulative interference during spatial discrimination tests, such that error rate increased on later trials of test sessions. These data suggest that when faced with difficult discriminations, the aged rats were less able to distinguish current goal locations from those of previous trials. Increasing acetylcholine levels with donepezil did not improve aged rats’ abilities to accurately perform difficult spatial discriminations or reduce their susceptibility to interference. Interestingly, better spatial memory abilities were not significantly associated with higher performance on difficult spatial discriminations. This observation, along with the finding that aged rats made more errors under conditions in which interference was high, suggests that match-to-position spatial discrimination performance may rely on extra-hippocampal structures such as the prefrontal cortex, in addition to the dentate gyrus. PMID:27317194

  17. Exploring laterality and memory effects in the haptic discrimination of verbal and non-verbal shapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoycheva, Polina; Tiippana, Kaisa

    2018-03-14

    The brain's left hemisphere often displays advantages in processing verbal information, while the right hemisphere favours processing non-verbal information. In the haptic domain due to contra-lateral innervations, this functional lateralization is reflected in a hand advantage during certain functions. Findings regarding the hand-hemisphere advantage for haptic information remain contradictory, however. This study addressed these laterality effects and their interaction with memory retention times in the haptic modality. Participants performed haptic discrimination of letters, geometric shapes and nonsense shapes at memory retention times of 5, 15 and 30 s with the left and right hand separately, and we measured the discriminability index d'. The d' values were significantly higher for letters and geometric shapes than for nonsense shapes. This might result from dual coding (naming + spatial) or/and from a low stimulus complexity. There was no stimulus-specific laterality effect. However, we found a time-dependent laterality effect, which revealed that the performance of the left hand-right hemisphere was sustained up to 15 s, while the performance of the right-hand-left hemisphere decreased progressively throughout all retention times. This suggests that haptic memory traces are more robust to decay when they are processed by the left hand-right hemisphere.

  18. Polarimetric SAR image classification based on discriminative dictionary learning model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sang, Cheng Wei; Sun, Hong

    2018-03-01

    Polarimetric SAR (PolSAR) image classification is one of the important applications of PolSAR remote sensing. It is a difficult high-dimension nonlinear mapping problem, the sparse representations based on learning overcomplete dictionary have shown great potential to solve such problem. The overcomplete dictionary plays an important role in PolSAR image classification, however for PolSAR image complex scenes, features shared by different classes will weaken the discrimination of learned dictionary, so as to degrade classification performance. In this paper, we propose a novel overcomplete dictionary learning model to enhance the discrimination of dictionary. The learned overcomplete dictionary by the proposed model is more discriminative and very suitable for PolSAR classification.

  19. Tailoring a psychophysical discrimination experiment upon assessment of the psychometric function: Predictions and results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilardi, Andrea; Tabarelli, Davide; Ricci, Leonardo

    2015-02-01

    Decision making is a widespread research topic and plays a crucial role in neuroscience as well as in other research and application fields of, for example, biology, medicine and economics. The most basic implementation of decision making, namely binary discrimination, is successfully interpreted by means of signal detection theory (SDT), a statistical model that is deeply linked to physics. An additional, widespread tool to investigate discrimination ability is the psychometric function, which measures the probability of a given response as a function of the magnitude of a physical quantity underlying the stimulus. However, the link between psychometric functions and binary discrimination experiments is often neglected or misinterpreted. Aim of the present paper is to provide a detailed description of an experimental investigation on a prototypical discrimination task and to discuss the results in terms of SDT. To this purpose, we provide an outline of the theory and describe the implementation of two behavioural experiments in the visual modality: upon the assessment of the so-called psychometric function, we show how to tailor a binary discrimination experiment on performance and decisional bias, and to measure these quantities on a statistical base. Attention is devoted to the evaluation of uncertainties, an aspect which is also often overlooked in the scientific literature.

  20. Ratio dependence in small number discrimination is affected by the experimental procedure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian eAgrillo

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Adults, infants and some non-human animals share an approximate number system (ANS to estimate numerical quantities, and are supposed to share a second, ‘object-tracking’, system (OTS that supports the precise representation of a small number of items (up to 3 or 4. In relative numerosity judgments, accuracy depends on the ratio of the two numerosities (Weber’s Law, for numerosities > 4 (the typical ANS range, while for numerosities ≤ 4 (OTS range there is usually no ratio effect. However, recent studies have found evidence for ratio effects for small numerosities, challenging the idea that the OTS might be involved for small number discrimination. Here we tested the hypothesis that the lack of ratio effect in the numbers 1-4 is largely dependent on the type of stimulus presentation.We investigated relative numerosity judgments in college students using three different procedures: a simultaneous presentation of intermingled and separate groups of dots in separate experiments, and a further experiment with sequential presentation. As predicted, in the large number range, ratio dependence was observed in all tasks. By contrast, in the small number range, ratio insensitivity was found in one task (sequential presentation. In a fourth experiment, we showed that the presence of intermingled distractors elicited a ratio effect, while easily distinguishable distractors did not. As the different ratio sensitivity for small and large numbers has been often interpreted in terms of the activation of the OTS and ANS, our results suggest that numbers 1-4 may be represented by both numerical systems and that the experimental context, such as the presence/absence of task-irrelevant items in the visual field, would determine which system is activated.

  1. [Microcomputer control of a LED stimulus display device].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohmoto, S; Kikuchi, T; Kumada, T

    1987-02-01

    A visual stimulus display system controlled by a microcomputer was constructed at low cost. The system consists of a LED stimulus display device, a microcomputer, two interface boards, a pointing device (a "mouse") and two kinds of software. The first software package is written in BASIC. Its functions are: to construct stimulus patterns using the mouse, to construct letter patterns (alphabet, digit, symbols and Japanese letters--kanji, hiragana, katakana), to modify the patterns, to store the patterns on a floppy disc, to translate the patterns into integer data which are used to display the patterns in the second software. The second software package, written in BASIC and machine language, controls display of a sequence of stimulus patterns in predetermined time schedules in visual experiments.

  2. Assessing Knowledge Sharing Among Academics: A Validation of the Knowledge Sharing Behavior Scale (KSBS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramayah, T; Yeap, Jasmine A L; Ignatius, Joshua

    2014-04-01

    There is a belief that academics tend to hold on tightly to their knowledge and intellectual resources. However, not much effort has been put into the creation of a valid and reliable instrument to measure knowledge sharing behavior among the academics. To apply and validate the Knowledge Sharing Behavior Scale (KSBS) as a measure of knowledge sharing behavior within the academic community. Respondents (N = 447) were academics from arts and science streams in 10 local, public universities in Malaysia. Data were collected using the 28-item KSBS that assessed four dimensions of knowledge sharing behavior namely written contributions, organizational communications, personal interactions, and communities of practice. The exploratory factor analysis showed that the items loaded on the dimension constructs that they were supposed to represent, thus proving construct validity. A within-factor analysis revealed that each set of items representing their intended dimension loaded on only one construct, therefore establishing convergent validity. All four dimensions were not perfectly correlated with each other or organizational citizenship behavior, thereby proving discriminant validity. However, all four dimensions correlated with organizational commitment, thus confirming predictive validity. Furthermore, all four factors correlated with both tacit and explicit sharing, which confirmed their concurrent validity. All measures also possessed sufficient reliability (α > .70). The KSBS is a valid and reliable instrument that can be used to formally assess the types of knowledge artifacts residing among academics and the degree of knowledge sharing in relation to those artifacts. © The Author(s) 2014.

  3. Stimulus repetition and the perception of time: the effects of prior exposure on temporal discrimination, judgment, and production.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William J Matthews

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that repeated stimuli have shorter subjective duration than novel items, perhaps because of a reduction in the neural response to repeated presentations of the same object. Five experiments investigated the effects of repetition on time perception and found further evidence that immediate repetition reduces apparent duration, consistent with the idea that subjective duration is partly based on neural coding efficiency. In addition, the experiments found (a no effect of repetition on the precision of temporal discrimination, (b that the effects of repetition disappeared when there was a modest lag between presentations, (c that, across participants, the size of the repetition effect correlated with temporal discrimination, and (d that the effects of repetition suggested by a temporal production task were the opposite of those suggested by temporal judgments. The theoretical and practical implications of these results are discussed.

  4. Auditory capture of visual motion: effects on perception and discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCourt, Mark E; Leone, Lynnette M

    2016-09-28

    We asked whether the perceived direction of visual motion and contrast thresholds for motion discrimination are influenced by the concurrent motion of an auditory sound source. Visual motion stimuli were counterphasing Gabor patches, whose net motion energy was manipulated by adjusting the contrast of the leftward-moving and rightward-moving components. The presentation of these visual stimuli was paired with the simultaneous presentation of auditory stimuli, whose apparent motion in 3D auditory space (rightward, leftward, static, no sound) was manipulated using interaural time and intensity differences, and Doppler cues. In experiment 1, observers judged whether the Gabor visual stimulus appeared to move rightward or leftward. In experiment 2, contrast discrimination thresholds for detecting the interval containing unequal (rightward or leftward) visual motion energy were obtained under the same auditory conditions. Experiment 1 showed that the perceived direction of ambiguous visual motion is powerfully influenced by concurrent auditory motion, such that auditory motion 'captured' ambiguous visual motion. Experiment 2 showed that this interaction occurs at a sensory stage of processing as visual contrast discrimination thresholds (a criterion-free measure of sensitivity) were significantly elevated when paired with congruent auditory motion. These results suggest that auditory and visual motion signals are integrated and combined into a supramodal (audiovisual) representation of motion.

  5. Improved discrimination of visual stimuli following repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael L Waterston

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS at certain frequencies increases thresholds for motor-evoked potentials and phosphenes following stimulation of cortex. Consequently rTMS is often assumed to introduce a "virtual lesion" in stimulated brain regions, with correspondingly diminished behavioral performance. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we investigated the effects of rTMS to visual cortex on subjects' ability to perform visual psychophysical tasks. Contrary to expectations of a visual deficit, we find that rTMS often improves the discrimination of visual features. For coarse orientation tasks, discrimination of a static stimulus improved consistently following theta-burst stimulation of the occipital lobe. Using a reaction-time task, we found that these improvements occurred throughout the visual field and lasted beyond one hour post-rTMS. Low-frequency (1 Hz stimulation yielded similar improvements. In contrast, we did not find consistent effects of rTMS on performance in a fine orientation discrimination task. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Overall our results suggest that rTMS generally improves or has no effect on visual acuity, with the nature of the effect depending on the type of stimulation and the task. We interpret our results in the context of an ideal-observer model of visual perception.

  6. Double dissociation of the anterior and posterior dorsomedial caudate-putamen in the acquisition and expression of associative learning with the nicotine stimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charntikov, Sergios; Pittenger, Steven T; Swalve, Natashia; Li, Ming; Bevins, Rick A

    2017-07-15

    Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable deaths worldwide. This habit is not only debilitating to individual users but also to those around them (second-hand smoking). Nicotine is the main addictive component of tobacco products and is a moderate stimulant and a mild reinforcer. Importantly, besides its unconditional effects, nicotine also has conditioned stimulus effects that may contribute to the tenacity of the smoking habit. Because the neurobiological substrates underlying these processes are virtually unexplored, the present study investigated the functional involvement of the dorsomedial caudate putamen (dmCPu) in learning processes with nicotine as an interoceptive stimulus. Rats were trained using the discriminated goal-tracking task where nicotine injections (0.4 mg/kg; SC), on some days, were paired with intermittent (36 per session) sucrose deliveries; sucrose was not available on interspersed saline days. Pre-training excitotoxic or post-training transient lesions of anterior or posterior dmCPu were used to elucidate the role of these areas in acquisition or expression of associative learning with nicotine stimulus. Pre-training lesion of p-dmCPu inhibited acquisition while post-training lesions of p-dmCPu attenuated the expression of associative learning with the nicotine stimulus. On the other hand, post-training lesions of a-dmCPu evoked nicotine-like responding following saline treatment indicating the role of this area in disinhibition of learned motor behaviors. These results, for the first time, show functionally distinct involvement of a- and p-dmCPu in various stages of associative learning using nicotine stimulus and provide an initial account of neural plasticity underlying these learning processes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Human pupillary dilation response to deviant auditory stimuli: Effects of stimulus properties and voluntary attention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsin-I eLiao

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available A unique sound that deviates from a repetitive background sound induces signature neural responses, such as mismatch negativity and novelty P3 response in electro-encephalography studies. Here we show that a deviant auditory stimulus induces a human pupillary dilation response (PDR that is sensitive to the stimulus properties and irrespective whether attention is directed to the sounds or not. In an auditory oddball sequence, we used white noise and 2000-Hz tones as oddballs against repeated 1000-Hz tones. Participants’ pupillary responses were recorded while they listened to the auditory oddball sequence. In Experiment 1, they were not involved in any task. Results show that pupils dilated to the noise oddballs for approximately 4 s, but no such PDR was found for the 2000-Hz tone oddballs. In Experiments 2, two types of visual oddballs were presented synchronously with the auditory oddballs. Participants discriminated the auditory or visual oddballs while trying to ignore stimuli from the other modality. The purpose of this manipulation was to direct attention to or away from the auditory sequence. In Experiment 3, the visual oddballs and the auditory oddballs were always presented asynchronously to prevent residuals of attention on to-be-ignored oddballs due to the concurrence with the attended oddballs. Results show that pupils dilated to both the noise and 2000-Hz tone oddballs in all conditions. Most importantly, PDRs to noise were larger than those to the 2000-Hz tone oddballs regardless of the attention condition in both experiments. The overall results suggest that the stimulus-dependent factor of the PDR appears to be independent of attention.

  8. Human Pupillary Dilation Response to Deviant Auditory Stimuli: Effects of Stimulus Properties and Voluntary Attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Hsin-I; Yoneya, Makoto; Kidani, Shunsuke; Kashino, Makio; Furukawa, Shigeto

    2016-01-01

    A unique sound that deviates from a repetitive background sound induces signature neural responses, such as mismatch negativity and novelty P3 response in electro-encephalography studies. Here we show that a deviant auditory stimulus induces a human pupillary dilation response (PDR) that is sensitive to the stimulus properties and irrespective whether attention is directed to the sounds or not. In an auditory oddball sequence, we used white noise and 2000-Hz tones as oddballs against repeated 1000-Hz tones. Participants' pupillary responses were recorded while they listened to the auditory oddball sequence. In Experiment 1, they were not involved in any task. Results show that pupils dilated to the noise oddballs for approximately 4 s, but no such PDR was found for the 2000-Hz tone oddballs. In Experiments 2, two types of visual oddballs were presented synchronously with the auditory oddballs. Participants discriminated the auditory or visual oddballs while trying to ignore stimuli from the other modality. The purpose of this manipulation was to direct attention to or away from the auditory sequence. In Experiment 3, the visual oddballs and the auditory oddballs were always presented asynchronously to prevent residuals of attention on to-be-ignored oddballs due to the concurrence with the attended oddballs. Results show that pupils dilated to both the noise and 2000-Hz tone oddballs in all conditions. Most importantly, PDRs to noise were larger than those to the 2000-Hz tone oddballs regardless of the attention condition in both experiments. The overall results suggest that the stimulus-dependent factor of the PDR appears to be independent of attention.

  9. Alterations to multisensory and unisensory integration by stimulus competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pluta, Scott R; Rowland, Benjamin A; Stanford, Terrence R; Stein, Barry E

    2011-12-01

    In environments containing sensory events at competing locations, selecting a target for orienting requires prioritization of stimulus values. Although the superior colliculus (SC) is causally linked to the stimulus selection process, the manner in which SC multisensory integration operates in a competitive stimulus environment is unknown. Here we examined how the activity of visual-auditory SC neurons is affected by placement of a competing target in the opposite hemifield, a stimulus configuration that would, in principle, promote interhemispheric competition for access to downstream motor circuitry. Competitive interactions between the targets were evident in how they altered unisensory and multisensory responses of individual neurons. Responses elicited by a cross-modal stimulus (multisensory responses) proved to be substantially more resistant to competitor-induced depression than were unisensory responses (evoked by the component modality-specific stimuli). Similarly, when a cross-modal stimulus served as the competitor, it exerted considerably more depression than did its individual component stimuli, in some cases producing more depression than predicted by their linear sum. These findings suggest that multisensory integration can help resolve competition among multiple targets by enhancing orientation to the location of cross-modal events while simultaneously suppressing orientation to events at alternate locations.

  10. The time-course of activation in the dorsal and ventral visual streams during landmark cueing and perceptual discrimination tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lambert, Anthony J; Wootton, Adrienne

    2017-08-01

    Different patterns of high density EEG activity were elicited by the same peripheral stimuli, in the context of Landmark Cueing and Perceptual Discrimination tasks. The C1 component of the visual event-related potential (ERP) at parietal - occipital electrode sites was larger in the Landmark Cueing task, and source localisation suggested greater activation in the superior parietal lobule (SPL) in this task, compared to the Perceptual Discrimination task, indicating stronger early recruitment of the dorsal visual stream. In the Perceptual Discrimination task, source localisation suggested widespread activation of the inferior temporal gyrus (ITG) and fusiform gyrus (FFG), structures associated with the ventral visual stream, during the early phase of the P1 ERP component. Moreover, during a later epoch (171-270ms after stimulus onset) increased temporal-occipital negativity, and stronger recruitment of ITG and FFG were observed in the Perceptual Discrimination task. These findings illuminate the contrasting functions of the dorsal and ventral visual streams, to support rapid shifts of attention in response to contextual landmarks, and conscious discrimination, respectively. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Colour categories are reflected in sensory stages of colour perception when stimulus issues are resolved

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Xun; Franklin, Anna

    2017-01-01

    Debate exists about the time course of the effect of colour categories on visual processing. We investigated the effect of colour categories for two groups who differed in whether they categorised a blue-green boundary colour as the same- or different-category to a reliably-named blue colour and a reliably-named green colour. Colour differences were equated in just-noticeable differences to be equally discriminable. We analysed event-related potentials for these colours elicited on a passive visual oddball task and investigated the time course of categorical effects on colour processing. Support for category effects was found 100 ms after stimulus onset, and over frontal sites around 250 ms, suggesting that colour naming affects both early sensory and later stages of chromatic processing. PMID:28542426

  12. Stimulus size dependence of hue changes induced by chromatic surrounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellner, Christian Johannes; Wachtler, Thomas

    2016-03-01

    A chromatic surround induces a change in the perceived hue of a stimulus. This shift in hue depends on the chromatic difference between the stimulus and the surround. We investigated how chromatic induction varies with stimulus size and whether the size dependence depends on the surround hue. Subjects performed asymmetric matching of color stimuli with different sizes in surrounds of different chromaticities. Generally, induced hue shifts decreased with increasing stimulus size. This decrease was quantitatively different for different surround hues. However, when size effects were normalized to an overall induction strength, the chromatic specificity was largely reduced. The separability of inducer chromaticity and stimulus size suggests that these effects are mediated by different neural mechanisms.

  13. Null point of discrimination in crustacean polarisation vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    How, Martin J; Christy, John; Roberts, Nicholas W; Marshall, N Justin

    2014-07-15

    The polarisation of light is used by many species of cephalopods and crustaceans to discriminate objects or to communicate. Most visual systems with this ability, such as that of the fiddler crab, include receptors with photopigments that are oriented horizontally and vertically relative to the outside world. Photoreceptors in such an orthogonal array are maximally sensitive to polarised light with the same fixed e-vector orientation. Using opponent neural connections, this two-channel system may produce a single value of polarisation contrast and, consequently, it may suffer from null points of discrimination. Stomatopod crustaceans use a different system for polarisation vision, comprising at least four types of polarisation-sensitive photoreceptor arranged at 0, 45, 90 and 135 deg relative to each other, in conjunction with extensive rotational eye movements. This anatomical arrangement should not suffer from equivalent null points of discrimination. To test whether these two systems were vulnerable to null points, we presented the fiddler crab Uca heteropleura and the stomatopod Haptosquilla trispinosa with polarised looming stimuli on a modified LCD monitor. The fiddler crab was less sensitive to differences in the degree of polarised light when the e-vector was at -45 deg than when the e-vector was horizontal. In comparison, stomatopods showed no difference in sensitivity between the two stimulus types. The results suggest that fiddler crabs suffer from a null point of sensitivity, while stomatopods do not. © 2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  14. Dendrites Enable a Robust Mechanism for Neuronal Stimulus Selectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazé, Romain D; Jarvis, Sarah; Foust, Amanda J; Schultz, Simon R

    2017-09-01

    Hearing, vision, touch: underlying all of these senses is stimulus selectivity, a robust information processing operation in which cortical neurons respond more to some stimuli than to others. Previous models assume that these neurons receive the highest weighted input from an ensemble encoding the preferred stimulus, but dendrites enable other possibilities. Nonlinear dendritic processing can produce stimulus selectivity based on the spatial distribution of synapses, even if the total preferred stimulus weight does not exceed that of nonpreferred stimuli. Using a multi-subunit nonlinear model, we demonstrate that stimulus selectivity can arise from the spatial distribution of synapses. We propose this as a general mechanism for information processing by neurons possessing dendritic trees. Moreover, we show that this implementation of stimulus selectivity increases the neuron's robustness to synaptic and dendritic failure. Importantly, our model can maintain stimulus selectivity for a larger range of loss of synapses or dendrites than an equivalent linear model. We then use a layer 2/3 biophysical neuron model to show that our implementation is consistent with two recent experimental observations: (1) one can observe a mixture of selectivities in dendrites that can differ from the somatic selectivity, and (2) hyperpolarization can broaden somatic tuning without affecting dendritic tuning. Our model predicts that an initially nonselective neuron can become selective when depolarized. In addition to motivating new experiments, the model's increased robustness to synapses and dendrites loss provides a starting point for fault-resistant neuromorphic chip development.

  15. Figure-ground discrimination in the avian brain: the nucleus rotundus and its inhibitory complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acerbo, Martin J; Lazareva, Olga F; McInnerney, John; Leiker, Emily; Wasserman, Edward A; Poremba, Amy

    2012-10-01

    In primates, neurons sensitive to figure-ground status are located in striate cortex (area V1) and extrastriate cortex (area V2). Although much is known about the anatomical structure and connectivity of the avian visual pathway, the functional organization of the avian brain remains largely unexplored. To pinpoint the areas associated with figure-ground segregation in the avian brain, we used a radioactively labeled glucose analog to compare differences in glucose uptake after figure-ground, color, and shape discriminations. We also included a control group that received food on a variable-interval schedule, but was not required to learn a visual discrimination. Although the discrimination task depended on group assignment, the stimulus displays were identical for all three experimental groups, ensuring that all animals were exposed to the same visual input. Our analysis concentrated on the primary thalamic nucleus associated with visual processing, the nucleus rotundus (Rt), and two nuclei providing regulatory feedback, the pretectum (PT) and the nucleus subpretectalis/interstitio-pretecto-subpretectalis complex (SP/IPS). We found that figure-ground discrimination was associated with strong and nonlateralized activity of Rt and SP/IPS, whereas color discrimination produced strong and lateralized activation in Rt alone. Shape discrimination was associated with lower activity of Rt than in the control group. Taken together, our results suggest that figure-ground discrimination is associated with Rt and that SP/IPS may be a main source of inhibitory control. Thus, figure-ground segregation in the avian brain may occur earlier than in the primate brain. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. A successful search for symmetry (and other derived relations) in the conditional discriminations of pigeons 1, 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urcuioli, Peter J.

    2017-01-01

    Symmetry is one of three derived relations (along with transitivity and reflexivity) that indicate that explicitly trained conditional relations are equivalence relations and that the elements of those trained relations are members of a stimulus class. Although BA symmetry is typically observed after AB conditional discrimination training in humans, it has been an elusive phenomenon in other animals until just recently. This paper describes past unsuccessful attempts to observe symmetry in non-human animals and the likely reasons for that lack of success. I then describe how methodological changes made in response to the earlier findings have now yielded robust evidence for symmetry in pigeons, and what these changes indicate about the functional matching stimuli. Finally, I describe a theory of stimulus-class formation (Urcuioli, 2008) which specifies how and why symmetry and other derived relations arise from different sets of trained relations. These derived relations are noteworthy because they demonstrate an impressive repertoire of non-similarity-based categorization effects in animals and the generative effects of reinforcement and stimulus control processes on behavior. PMID:28386579

  17. The Primary Visual Cortex Is Differentially Modulated by Stimulus-Driven and Top-Down Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekisz, Marek; Bogdan, Wojciech; Ghazaryan, Anaida; Waleszczyk, Wioletta J.; Kublik, Ewa; Wróbel, Andrzej

    2016-01-01

    Selective attention can be focused either volitionally, by top-down signals derived from task demands, or automatically, by bottom-up signals from salient stimuli. Because the brain mechanisms that underlie these two attention processes are poorly understood, we recorded local field potentials (LFPs) from primary visual cortical areas of cats as they performed stimulus-driven and anticipatory discrimination tasks. Consistent with our previous observations, in both tasks, we found enhanced beta activity, which we have postulated may serve as an attention carrier. We characterized the functional organization of task-related beta activity by (i) cortical responses (EPs) evoked by electrical stimulation of the optic chiasm and (ii) intracortical LFP correlations. During the anticipatory task, peripheral stimulation that was preceded by high-amplitude beta oscillations evoked large-amplitude EPs compared with EPs that followed low-amplitude beta. In contrast, during the stimulus-driven task, cortical EPs preceded by high-amplitude beta oscillations were, on average, smaller than those preceded by low-amplitude beta. Analysis of the correlations between the different recording sites revealed that beta activation maps were heterogeneous during the bottom-up task and homogeneous for the top-down task. We conclude that bottom-up attention activates cortical visual areas in a mosaic-like pattern, whereas top-down attentional modulation results in spatially homogeneous excitation. PMID:26730705

  18. Temporal and spectral contributions to musical instrument identification and discrimination among cochlear implant users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prentiss, Sandra M; Friedland, David R; Fullmer, Tanner; Crane, Alison; Stoddard, Timothy; Runge, Christina L

    2016-09-01

    To investigate the contributions of envelope and fine-structure to the perception of timbre by cochlear implant (CI) users as compared to normal hearing (NH) listeners. This was a prospective cohort comparison study. Normal hearing and cochlear implant patients were tested. Three experiments were performed in sound field using musical notes altered to affect the characteristic pitch of an instrument and the acoustic envelope. Experiment 1 assessed the ability to identify the instrument playing each note, while experiments 2 and 3 assessed the ability to discriminate the different stimuli. Normal hearing subjects performed better than CI subjects in all instrument identification tasks, reaching statistical significance for 4 of 5 stimulus conditions. Within the CI population, acoustic envelope modifications did not significantly affect instrument identification or discrimination. With envelope and pitch cues removed, fine structure discrimination performance was similar between normal hearing and CI users for the majority of conditions, but some specific instrument comparisons were significantly more challenging for CI users. Cochlear implant users perform significantly worse than normal hearing listeners on tasks of instrument identification. However, cochlear implant listeners can discriminate differences in envelope and some fine structure components of musical instrument sounds as well as normal hearing listeners. The results indicated that certain fine structure cues are important for cochlear implant users to make discrimination judgments, and therefore may affect interpretation toward associating with a specific instrument for identification.

  19. Strategic allocation of attention reduces temporally predictable stimulus conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Appelbaum, L. Gregory; Boehler, Carsten N.; Won, Robert; Davis, Lauren; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2013-01-01

    Humans are able to continuously monitor environmental situations and adjust their behavioral strategies to optimize performance. Here we investigate the behavioral and brain adjustments that occur when conflicting stimulus elements are, or are not, temporally predictable. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were collected while manual-response variants of the Stroop task were performed in which the stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) between the relevant-color and irrelevant-word stimulus components were either randomly intermixed, or held constant, within each experimental run. Results indicated that the size of both the neural and behavioral effects of stimulus incongruency varied with the temporal arrangement of the stimulus components, such that the random-SOA arrangements produced the greatest incongruency effects at the earliest irrelevant-first SOA (−200 ms) and the constant-SOA arrangements produced the greatest effects with simultaneous presentation. These differences in conflict processing were accompanied by rapid (~150 ms) modulations of the sensory ERPs to the irrelevant distracter components when they occurred consistently first. These effects suggest that individuals are able to strategically allocate attention in time to mitigate the influence of a temporally predictable distracter. As these adjustments are instantiated by the subjects without instruction, they reveal a form of rapid strategic learning for dealing with temporally predictable stimulus incongruency. PMID:22360623

  20. Revenue Sharing and its Impact on Civil Rights

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGraw, Marvin A.

    1975-01-01

    A discussion by the Assistant to the Director, Office of Revenue Sharing, U.S. Treasury Department, of the four part approach of that agency to extending the ability of the federal government to combat discrimination in the state and local sector; human rights workers should focus on the monetary and economic impact these funds have on the…

  1. How discriminating are discriminative instruments?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hankins, Matthew

    2008-05-27

    The McMaster framework introduced by Kirshner & Guyatt is the dominant paradigm for the development of measures of health status and health-related quality of life (HRQL). The framework defines the functions of such instruments as evaluative, predictive or discriminative. Evaluative instruments are required to be sensitive to change (responsiveness), but there is no corresponding index of the degree to which discriminative instruments are sensitive to cross-sectional differences. This paper argues that indices of validity and reliability are not sufficient to demonstrate that a discriminative instrument performs its function of discriminating between individuals, and that the McMaster framework would be augmented by the addition of a separate index of discrimination. The coefficient proposed by Ferguson (Delta) is easily adapted to HRQL instruments and is a direct, non-parametric index of the degree to which an instrument distinguishes between individuals. While Delta should prove useful in the development and evaluation of discriminative instruments, further research is required to elucidate the relationship between the measurement properties of discrimination, reliability and responsiveness.

  2. How discriminating are discriminative instruments?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hankins Matthew

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The McMaster framework introduced by Kirshner & Guyatt is the dominant paradigm for the development of measures of health status and health-related quality of life (HRQL. The framework defines the functions of such instruments as evaluative, predictive or discriminative. Evaluative instruments are required to be sensitive to change (responsiveness, but there is no corresponding index of the degree to which discriminative instruments are sensitive to cross-sectional differences. This paper argues that indices of validity and reliability are not sufficient to demonstrate that a discriminative instrument performs its function of discriminating between individuals, and that the McMaster framework would be augmented by the addition of a separate index of discrimination. The coefficient proposed by Ferguson (Delta is easily adapted to HRQL instruments and is a direct, non-parametric index of the degree to which an instrument distinguishes between individuals. While Delta should prove useful in the development and evaluation of discriminative instruments, further research is required to elucidate the relationship between the measurement properties of discrimination, reliability and responsiveness.

  3. Intonation processing in congenital amusia: discrimination, identification and imitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Fang; Patel, Aniruddh D; Fourcin, Adrian; Stewart, Lauren

    2010-06-01

    This study investigated whether congenital amusia, a neuro-developmental disorder of musical perception, also has implications for speech intonation processing. In total, 16 British amusics and 16 matched controls completed five intonation perception tasks and two pitch threshold tasks. Compared with controls, amusics showed impaired performance on discrimination, identification and imitation of statements and questions that were characterized primarily by pitch direction differences in the final word. This intonation-processing deficit in amusia was largely associated with a psychophysical pitch direction discrimination deficit. These findings suggest that amusia impacts upon one's language abilities in subtle ways, and support previous evidence that pitch processing in language and music involves shared mechanisms.

  4. Perceptual learning of motion direction discrimination with suppressed and unsuppressed MT in humans: an fMRI study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Thompson

    Full Text Available The middle temporal area of the extrastriate visual cortex (area MT is integral to motion perception and is thought to play a key role in the perceptual learning of motion tasks. We have previously found, however, that perceptual learning of a motion discrimination task is possible even when the training stimulus contains locally balanced, motion opponent signals that putatively suppress the response of MT. Assuming at least partial suppression of MT, possible explanations for this learning are that 1 training made MT more responsive by reducing motion opponency, 2 MT remained suppressed and alternative visual areas such as V1 enabled learning and/or 3 suppression of MT increased with training, possibly to reduce noise. Here we used fMRI to test these possibilities. We first confirmed that the motion opponent stimulus did indeed suppress the BOLD response within hMT+ compared to an almost identical stimulus without locally balanced motion signals. We then trained participants on motion opponent or non-opponent stimuli. Training with the motion opponent stimulus reduced the BOLD response within hMT+ and greater reductions in BOLD response were correlated with greater amounts of learning. The opposite relationship between BOLD and behaviour was found at V1 for the group trained on the motion-opponent stimulus and at both V1 and hMT+ for the group trained on the non-opponent motion stimulus. As the average response of many cells within MT to motion opponent stimuli is the same as their response to non-directional flickering noise, the reduced activation of hMT+ after training may reflect noise reduction.

  5. Nanoscale theranostics for physical stimulus-responsive cancer therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qian; Ke, Hengte; Dai, Zhifei; Liu, Zhuang

    2015-12-01

    Physical stimulus-responsive therapies often employing multifunctional theranostic agents responsive to external physical stimuli such as light, magnetic field, ultra-sound, radiofrequency, X-ray, etc., have been widely explored as novel cancer therapy strategies, showing encouraging results in many pre-clinical animal experiments. Unlike conventional cancer chemotherapy which often accompanies with severe toxic side effects, physical stimulus-responsive agents usually are non-toxic by themselves and would destruct cancer cells only under specific external stimuli, and thus could offer greatly reduced toxicity and enhanced treatment specificity. In addition, physical stimulus-responsive therapies can also be combined with other traditional therapeutics to achieve synergistic anti-tumor effects via a variety of mechanisms. In this review, we will summarize the latest progress in the development of physical stimulus-responsive therapies, and discuss the important roles of nanoscale theranostic agents involved in those non-conventional therapeutic strategies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Gender Discrimination in the Allocation of Migrant Household Resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antman, Francisca M

    2015-07-01

    This paper considers the relationship between international migration and gender discrimination through the lens of decision-making power over intrahousehold resource allocation. The endogeneity of migration is addressed with a difference-in-differences style identification strategy and a model with household fixed effects. The results suggest that while a migrant household head is away, a greater share of resources is spent on girls relative to boys and his spouse commands greater decision-making power. Once the head returns home, however, a greater share of resources goes to boys and there is suggestive evidence of greater authority for the head of household.

  7. Gender Discrimination in the Allocation of Migrant Household Resources*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antman, Francisca M.

    2016-01-01

    This paper considers the relationship between international migration and gender discrimination through the lens of decision-making power over intrahousehold resource allocation. The endogeneity of migration is addressed with a difference-in-differences style identification strategy and a model with household fixed effects. The results suggest that while a migrant household head is away, a greater share of resources is spent on girls relative to boys and his spouse commands greater decision-making power. Once the head returns home, however, a greater share of resources goes to boys and there is suggestive evidence of greater authority for the head of household. PMID:27546986

  8. Vocal neighbour-mate discrimination in female great tits despite high song similarity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blumenrath, Sandra H.; Dabelsteen, Torben; Pedersen, Simon Boel

    2007-01-01

    Discrimination between conspecifics is important in mediating social interactions between several individuals in a network environment. In great tits, Parus major, females readily distinguish between the songs of their mate and those of a stranger. The high degree of song sharing among neighbouring...... males, however, raises the question of whether females are also able to perceive differences between songs shared by their mate and a neighbour. The great tit is a socially monogamous, hole-nesting species with biparental care. Pair bond maintenance and coordination of the pair's reproductive efforts...... are important, and the female's ability to recognize her mate's song should therefore be adaptive. In a neighbour-mate discrimination playback experiment, we presented 13 incubating great tit females situated inside nestboxes with a song of their mate and the same song type from a neighbour. Each female...

  9. Dynamics and stimulus-dependence of pacemaker control during behavioral modulations in the weakly electric fish, Apteronotus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dye, J

    1987-08-01

    1. Weakly electric fish generate around their bodies low-amplitude, AC electric fields which are used both for the detection of objects and intraspecific communication. The types of modulation in this signal of which the high-frequency wave-type gymnotiform, Apteronotus, is capable are relatively few and stereotyped. Chief among these is the chirp, a signal used in courtship and agonistic displays. Chirps are brief and rapid accelerations in the normally highly regular electric organ discharge (EOD) frequency. 2. Chirping can be elicited artificially in these animals by the use of a stimulus regime identical to that typically used to elicit another behavior, the jamming avoidance response (JAR). The neuronal basis for the JAR, a much slower and lesser alteration in EOD frequency, is well understood. Examination of the stimulus features which induce chirping show that, like the JAR, there is a region of frequency differences between the fish's EOD and the interfering signal that maximally elicits the response. Moreover, the response is sex-specific with regard to the sign of the frequency difference, with females chirping preferentially on the positive and most males on the negative Df. These features imply that the sensory mechanisms involved in the triggering of these communicatory behaviors are fundamentally similar to those explicated for the JAR. 3. Additionally, two other modulatory behaviors of unknown significance are described. The first is a non-selective rise in EOD frequency associated with a JAR stimulus, occurring regardless of the sign of the Df. This modulation shares many characteristics with the JAR. The second behavior, which we have termed a 'yodel', is distinct from and kinetically intermediate to chirping and the JAR. Moreover, unlike the other studied electromotor behaviors it is generally produced only after the termination of the eliciting stimulus.

  10. StimDuino: an Arduino-based electrophysiological stimulus isolator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheinin, Anton; Lavi, Ayal; Michaelevski, Izhak

    2015-03-30

    Electrical stimulus isolator is a widely used device in electrophysiology. The timing of the stimulus application is usually automated and controlled by the external device or acquisition software; however, the intensity of the stimulus is adjusted manually. Inaccuracy, lack of reproducibility and no automation of the experimental protocol are disadvantages of the manual adjustment. To overcome these shortcomings, we developed StimDuino, an inexpensive Arduino-controlled stimulus isolator allowing highly accurate, reproducible automated setting of the stimulation current. The intensity of the stimulation current delivered by StimDuino is controlled by Arduino, an open-source microcontroller development platform. The automatic stimulation patterns are software-controlled and the parameters are set from Matlab-coded simple, intuitive and user-friendly graphical user interface. The software also allows remote control of the device over the network. Electrical current measurements showed that StimDuino produces the requested current output with high accuracy. In both hippocampal slice and in vivo recordings, the fEPSP measurements obtained with StimDuino and the commercial stimulus isolators showed high correlation. Commercial stimulus isolators are manually managed, while StimDuino generates automatic stimulation patterns with increasing current intensity. The pattern is utilized for the input-output relationship analysis, necessary for assessment of excitability. In contrast to StimuDuino, not all commercial devices are capable for remote control of the parameters and stimulation process. StimDuino-generated automation of the input-output relationship assessment eliminates need for the current intensity manually adjusting, improves stimulation reproducibility, accuracy and allows on-site and remote control of the stimulation parameters. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Positive and negative affect produce opposing task-irrelevant stimulus preexposure effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazar, Josef; Kaplan, Oren; Sternberg, Terri; Lubow, R E

    2012-06-01

    In three experiments, groups were exposed to either positive or negative affect video clips, after which they were presented with a series of task-irrelevant stimuli. In the subsequent test task, subjects were required to learn an association between the previously irrelevant stimulus and a consequence, and between a new stimulus and a consequence. Induced positive affect produced a latent inhibition effect (poorer evidence of learning with the previously irrelevant stimulus than with the novel stimulus). In opposition to this, induced negative affect resulted in better evidence of learning with a previously irrelevant stimulus than with a novel stimulus. In general, the opposing effects also were present in participants scoring high on self-report questionnaires of depression (Experiments 2 and 3). These unique findings were predicted and accounted for on the basis of two principles: (a) positive affect broadens the attentional field and negative affect contracts it; and (b) task-irrelevant stimuli are processed in two successive stages, the first encodes stimulus properties, and the second encodes stimulus relationships. The opposing influences of negative and positive mood on the processing of irrelevant stimuli have implications for the role of emotion in general theories of cognition, and possibly for resolving some of the inconsistent findings in research with schizophrenia patients.

  12. Enhanced stimulus-induced gamma activity in humans during propofol-induced sedation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neeraj Saxena

    Full Text Available Stimulus-induced gamma oscillations in the 30-80 Hz range have been implicated in a wide number of functions including visual processing, memory and attention. While occipital gamma-band oscillations can be pharmacologically modified in animal preparations, pharmacological modulation of stimulus-induced visual gamma oscillations has yet to be demonstrated in non-invasive human recordings. Here, in fifteen healthy humans volunteers, we probed the effects of the GABAA agonist and sedative propofol on stimulus-related gamma activity recorded with magnetoencephalography, using a simple visual grating stimulus designed to elicit gamma oscillations in the primary visual cortex. During propofol sedation as compared to the normal awake state, a significant 60% increase in stimulus-induced gamma amplitude was seen together with a 94% enhancement of stimulus-induced alpha suppression and a simultaneous reduction in the amplitude of the pattern-onset evoked response. These data demonstrate, that propofol-induced sedation is accompanied by increased stimulus-induced gamma activity providing a potential window into mechanisms of gamma-oscillation generation in humans.

  13. Stimulus-driven attentional capture by subliminal onset cues

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoeberl, T.; Fuchs, I.; Theeuwes, J.; Ansorge, U.

    2015-01-01

    In two experiments, we tested whether subliminal abrupt onset cues capture attention in a stimulus-driven way. An onset cue was presented 16 ms prior to the stimulus display that consisted of clearly visible color targets. The onset cue was presented either at the same side as the target (the valid

  14. Effects of Hand Proximity and Movement Direction in Spatial and Temporal Gap Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiemers, Michael; Fischer, Martin H

    2016-01-01

    Previous research on the interplay between static manual postures and visual attention revealed enhanced visual selection near the hands (near-hand effect). During active movements there is also superior visual performance when moving toward compared to away from the stimulus (direction effect). The "modulated visual pathways" hypothesis argues that differential involvement of magno- and parvocellular visual processing streams causes the near-hand effect. The key finding supporting this hypothesis is an increase in temporal and a reduction in spatial processing in near-hand space (Gozli et al., 2012). Since this hypothesis has, so far, only been tested with static hand postures, we provide a conceptual replication of Gozli et al.'s (2012) result with moving hands, thus also probing the generality of the direction effect. Participants performed temporal or spatial gap discriminations while their right hand was moving below the display. In contrast to Gozli et al. (2012), temporal gap discrimination was superior at intermediate and not near hand proximity. In spatial gap discrimination, a direction effect without hand proximity effect suggests that pragmatic attentional maps overshadowed temporal/spatial processing biases for far/near-hand space.

  15. Learning to fear a second-order stimulus following vicarious learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Gemma; Field, Andy P; Askew, Chris

    2017-04-01

    Vicarious fear learning refers to the acquisition of fear via observation of the fearful responses of others. The present study aims to extend current knowledge by exploring whether second-order vicarious fear learning can be demonstrated in children. That is, whether vicariously learnt fear responses for one stimulus can be elicited in a second stimulus associated with that initial stimulus. Results demonstrated that children's (5-11 years) fear responses for marsupials and caterpillars increased when they were seen with fearful faces compared to no faces. Additionally, the results indicated a second-order effect in which fear-related learning occurred for other animals seen together with the fear-paired animal, even though the animals were never observed with fearful faces themselves. Overall, the findings indicate that for children in this age group vicariously learnt fear-related responses for one stimulus can subsequently be observed for a second stimulus without it being experienced in a fear-related vicarious learning event. These findings may help to explain why some individuals do not recall involvement of a traumatic learning episode in the development of their fear of a specific stimulus.

  16. Amphetamine-like effects of anorectics and related compounds in pigeons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, S M; Johanson, C E

    1987-06-01

    Four pigeons were trained to discriminate injections of d-amphetamine (AMPH; 2.0 mg/kg i.m.) from saline with responding maintained under a fixed-ratio 30 schedule of food delivery. When drugs used therapeutically as anorectics were tested, they consistently produced greater than 80% of AMPH-appropriate responding. The order of potency for substituting for AMPH was: mazindol greater than AMPH = phenmetrazine = phentermine greater than chlorphentermine = phendimetrazine = diethylpropion greater than clortermine = mefenorex. Other anorectics such as phenylpropanolamine (0.3-30.0 mg/kg) and fenfluramine (1.0-17.0 mg/kg) only substituted partially for AMPH whereas benzphetamine (1.0-100.0 mg/kg) resulted primarily in saline-appropriate responding. Compounds related to AMPH in biochemical mechanism of action or psychomotor stimulant activity also were tested. Methylphenidate (0.1-3.0 mg/kg), piribedil (0.3-17.0 mg/kg) and nisoxetine (0.03-1.0 mg/kg) shared discriminative stimulus properties with AMPH whereas bupropion (1.0-30.0 mg/kg) and propylhexedrine (10.0-100.0 mg/kg) substituted for AMPH in two of three pigeons tested. In contrast, caffeine and fenetylline resulted principally in saline-appropriate responding. Compounds from pharmacological classes not related to AMPH, such as morphine, diazepam and phencyclidine, failed to substitute for AMPH. In general, compounds with anorectic and/or stimulant properties shared discriminative stimulus properties with AMPH.

  17. Adaptive stimulus optimization and model-based experiments for sensory systems neuroscience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher eDiMattina

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we review several lines of recent work aimed at developing practical methods for adaptive on-line stimulus generation for sensory neurophysiology. We consider various experimental paradigms where on-line stimulus optimization is utilized, including the classical textit{optimal stimulus} paradigm where the goal of experiments is to identify a stimulus which maximizes neural responses, the textit{iso-response} paradigm which finds sets of stimuli giving rise to constant responses, and the textit{system identification} paradigm where the experimental goal is to estimate and possibly compare sensory processing models. We discuss various theoretical and practical aspects of adaptive firing rate optimization, including optimization with stimulus space constraints, firing rate adaptation, and possible network constraints on the optimal stimulus. We consider the problem of system identification, and show how accurate estimation of nonlinear models can be highly dependent on the stimulus set used to probe the network. We suggest that optimizing stimuli for accurate model estimation may make it possible to successfully identify nonlinear models which are otherwise intractable, and summarize several recent studies of this type. Finally, we present a two-stage stimulus design procedure which combines the dual goals of model estimation and model comparison and may be especially useful for system identification experiments where the appropriate model is unknown beforehand. We propose that fast, on-line stimulus optimization enabled by increasing computer power can make it practical to move sensory neuroscience away from a descriptive paradigm and towards a new paradigm of real-time model estimation and comparison.

  18. Short-term and long-term effects of diazepam on the memory for discrimination and generalization of scopolamine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casasola-Castro, C; Weissmann-Sánchez, L; Calixto-González, E; Aguayo-Del Castillo, A; Velázquez-Martínez, D N

    2017-10-01

    Benzodiazepines are among the most widely prescribed and misused psychopharmaceutical drugs. Although they are well-tolerated, they are also capable of producing amnestic effects similar to those observed after pharmacological or organic cholinergic dysfunction. To date, the effect of benzodiazepine diazepam on the memory for discrimination of anticholinergic drugs has not been reported. The aim of the present study was to analyze the immediate and long-term effects of diazepam on a drug discrimination task with scopolamine. Male Wistar rats were trained to discriminate between scopolamine and saline administration using a two-lever discrimination task. Once discrimination was acquired, the subjects were divided into three independent groups, (1) control, (2) diazepam, and (3) diazepam chronic administration (10 days). Subsequently, generalization curves for scopolamine were obtained. Additionally, the diazepam and control groups were revaluated after 90 days without having been given any other treatment. The results showed that diazepam produced a significant reduction in the generalization gradient for scopolamine, indicating an impairment of discrimination. The negative effect of diazepam persisted even 90 days after drug had been administered. Meanwhile, the previous administration of diazepam for 10 days totally abated the generalization curve and the general performance of the subjects. The results suggest that diazepam affects memory for the stimulus discrimination of anticholinergic drugs and does so persistently, which could be an important consideration during the treatment of amnesic patients with benzodiazepines.

  19. Temporal and spectral contributions to musical instrument identification and discrimination among cochlear implant users

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Sandra M. Prentiss; David R. Friedland; Tanner Fullmer; Alison Crane; Timothy Stoddard; Christina L. Runge

    2016-01-01

    Objective:To investigate the contributions of envelope and fine-structure to the perception of timbre by cochlear implant (CI) users as compared to normal hearing (NH) lis-teners. Methods: This was a prospective cohort comparison study. Normal hearing and cochlear implant patients were tested. Three experiments were performed in sound field using musical notes altered to affect the characteristic pitch of an instrument and the acoustic envelope. Experiment 1 assessed the ability to identify the instrument playing each note, while experi-ments 2 and 3 assessed the ability to discriminate the different stimuli. Results:Normal hearing subjects performed better than CI subjects in all instrument identifi-cation tasks, reaching statistical significance for 4 of 5 stimulus conditions. Within the CI pop-ulation, acoustic envelope modifications did not significantly affect instrument identification or discrimination. With envelope and pitch cues removed, fine structure discrimination perfor-mance was similar between normal hearing and CI users for the majority of conditions, but some specific instrument comparisons were significantly more challenging for CI users. Conclusions:Cochlear implant users perform significantly worse than normal hearing listeners on tasks of instrument identification. However, cochlear implant listeners can discriminate differences in envelope and some fine structure components of musical instrument sounds as well as normal hearing listeners. The results indicated that certain fine structure cues are important for cochlear implant users to make discrimination judgments, and therefore may affect interpretation toward associating with a specific instrument for identification.

  20. Spatial discrimination and visual discrimination

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haagensen, Annika M. J.; Grand, Nanna; Klastrup, Signe

    2013-01-01

    Two methods investigating learning and memory in juvenile Gottingen minipigs were evaluated for potential use in preclinical toxicity testing. Twelve minipigs were tested using a spatial hole-board discrimination test including a learning phase and two memory phases. Five minipigs were tested...... in a visual discrimination test. The juvenile minipigs were able to learn the spatial hole-board discrimination test and showed improved working and reference memory during the learning phase. Performance in the memory phases was affected by the retention intervals, but the minipigs were able to remember...... the concept of the test in both memory phases. Working memory and reference memory were significantly improved in the last trials of the memory phases. In the visual discrimination test, the minipigs learned to discriminate between the three figures presented to them within 9-14 sessions. For the memory test...

  1. Effects of subchronic phencyclidine (PCP treatment on social behaviors, and operant discrimination and reversal learning in C57BL/6J mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan L Brigman

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Subchronic treatment with the psychotomimetic phencyclidine (PCP has been proposed as a rodent model of the negative and cognitive/executive symptoms of schizophrenia. There has, however, been a paucity of studies on this model in mice, despite the growing use of the mouse as a subject in genetic and molecular studies of schizophrenia. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of subchronic PCP treatment (5 mg/kg twice daily x 7 days, followed by 7 days withdrawal in C57BL/6J mice on 1 social behaviors using a sociability/social novelty-preference paradigm, and 2 pairwise visual discrimination and reversal learning using a touchscreen-based operant system. Results showed that mice subchronically treated with PCP made more visits to (but did not spend more time with a social stimulus relative to an inanimate one, and made more visits and spent more time investigating a novel social stimulus over a familiar one. Subchronic PCP treatment did not significantly affect behavior in either the discrimination or reversal learning tasks. These data encourage further analysis of the potential utility of mouse subchronic PCP treatment for modeling the social withdrawal component of schizophrenia. They also indicate that the treatment regimen employed was insufficient to impair our measures of discrimination and reversal learning in the C57BL/6J strain. Further work will be needed to identify alternative methods (e.g., repeated cycles of subchronic PCP treatment, use of different mouse strains that produce discrimination and/or reversal impairment, as well as other cognitive/executive measures that are sensitive to chronic PCP treatment in mice.

  2. Narrowing down the conditions for extinction of Pavlovian feature-positive discriminations in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Vooren, Priya R; Franssen, Mathijs; Beckers, Tom; Hermans, Dirk; Baeyens, Frank

    2012-12-01

    The aim of this study was to delineate the minimal conditions for extinction of Pavlovian modulation in humans. Previous experiments at our lab showed that, after X-- A+/A- acquisition training, X- trials did not extinguish differential X-- A+/A- responding, while X-- A- trials did. Additionally, X-- A- extinction training seemed only to extinguish differential X-- A+/A- responding, while leaving differential responding on a concurrently trained Y [Symbol: see text] B+/B- discrimination intact. It thus seemed that the X-- A+/A- discrimination can only be extinguished by X-- A- extinction trials. (Rescorla, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes 12, 16-24, 1986), on the other hand, found that the minimal conditions for extinction were broader in pigeons: Namely, he found that an acquired X-- A+/A- discrimination could be extinguished by presenting the original feature X in combination with a different target (B) that was minimally trained as an exciter. We thus wanted to examine whether this was also the case in humans. We found that nonreinforced X-- B- presentations did not abolish discriminative X-- A/A responding when target B was a nonreinforced stimulus. Nonreinforced X-- B- trials did extinguish the X-- A+/A- discrimination when target B had previously been trained as a target for modulation (X-- B+/B- or Y [Symbol: see text] B+/B- training) or as a reinforced exciter (B+). Our results thusf parallel and extend those in nonhuman animals (Rescorla, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes 12, 16-24, 1986).

  3. Pre-stimulus thalamic theta power predicts human memory formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeney-Reed, Catherine M; Zaehle, Tino; Voges, Jürgen; Schmitt, Friedhelm C; Buentjen, Lars; Kopitzki, Klaus; Richardson-Klavehn, Alan; Hinrichs, Hermann; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Knight, Robert T; Rugg, Michael D

    2016-09-01

    Pre-stimulus theta (4-8Hz) power in the hippocampus and neocortex predicts whether a memory for a subsequent event will be formed. Anatomical studies reveal thalamus-hippocampal connectivity, and lesion, neuroimaging, and electrophysiological studies show that memory processing involves the dorsomedial (DMTN) and anterior thalamic nuclei (ATN). The small size and deep location of these nuclei have limited real-time study of their activity, however, and it is unknown whether pre-stimulus theta power predictive of successful memory formation is also found in these subcortical structures. We recorded human electrophysiological data from the DMTN and ATN of 7 patients receiving deep brain stimulation for refractory epilepsy. We found that greater pre-stimulus theta power in the right DMTN was associated with successful memory encoding, predicting both behavioral outcome and post-stimulus correlates of successful memory formation. In particular, significant correlations were observed between right DMTN theta power and both frontal theta and right ATN gamma (32-50Hz) phase alignment, and frontal-ATN theta-gamma cross-frequency coupling. We draw the following primary conclusions. Our results provide direct electrophysiological evidence in humans of a role for the DMTN as well as the ATN in memory formation. Furthermore, prediction of subsequent memory performance by pre-stimulus thalamic oscillations provides evidence that post-stimulus differences in thalamic activity that index successful and unsuccessful encoding reflect brain processes specifically underpinning memory formation. Finally, the findings broaden the understanding of brain states that facilitate memory encoding to include subcortical as well as cortical structures. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. 29 CFR 1691.5 - Agency processing of complaints of employment discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... title VI, title IX, or the revenue sharing act; and (2) Determine whether EEOC may have jurisdiction over the complaint under title VII or the Equal Pay Act. (c) An agency shall transfer to EEOC a... discrimination. 1691.5 Section 1691.5 Labor Regulations Relating to Labor (Continued) EQUAL EMPLOYMENT...

  5. Model Stimulus-Organism-Response: Penentu Perilaku Pembelian Konsumen Secara Situasional

    OpenAIRE

    Magdalena, Nonie

    2005-01-01

    Understanding about consumer purchase behavior is an essential aspect for developing organization bussiness strategic, especially in retailing. S-O-R (Stimulus-Organism-Response) model helps the practision and academics to understand which stimulus will influence consumers and the reaction that comsumer gave. One of the stimulus that explained in this article is the situation. Situation is an aspect that had change and hardly to predict. In other words, situation will determine consumer purch...

  6. Discrimination and Anti-discrimination in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Tore Vincents

    The purpose of this report is to describe and analyse Danish anti-discrimination legislation and the debate about discrimination in Denmark in order to identify present and future legal challenges. The main focus is the implementation of the EU anti-discrimination directives in Danish law...

  7. Learning to fear a second-order stimulus following vicarious learning

    OpenAIRE

    Reynolds, G; Field, AP; Askew, C

    2015-01-01

    Vicarious fear learning refers to the acquisition of fear via observation of the fearful responses of others. The present study aims to extend current knowledge by exploring whether second-order vicarious fear learning can be demonstrated in children. That is, whether vicariously learnt fear responses for one stimulus can be elicited in a second stimulus associated with that initial stimulus. Results demonstrated that children’s (5–11 years) fear responses for marsupials and caterpillars incr...

  8. The influence of spontaneous activity on stimulus processing in primary visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schölvinck, M L; Friston, K J; Rees, G

    2012-02-01

    Spontaneous activity in the resting human brain has been studied extensively; however, how such activity affects the local processing of a sensory stimulus is relatively unknown. Here, we examined the impact of spontaneous activity in primary visual cortex on neuronal and behavioural responses to a simple visual stimulus, using functional MRI. Stimulus-evoked responses remained essentially unchanged by spontaneous fluctuations, combining with them in a largely linear fashion (i.e., with little evidence for an interaction). However, interactions between spontaneous fluctuations and stimulus-evoked responses were evident behaviourally; high levels of spontaneous activity tended to be associated with increased stimulus detection at perceptual threshold. Our results extend those found in studies of spontaneous fluctuations in motor cortex and higher order visual areas, and suggest a fundamental role for spontaneous activity in stimulus processing. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. Effects of muscarinic receptor antagonists on cocaine discrimination in wild-type mice and in muscarinic receptor M1, M2, and M4 receptor knockout mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joseph, Lauren; Thomsen, Morgane

    2017-01-01

    Muscarinic M1/M4 receptor stimulation can reduce abuse-related effects of cocaine and may represent avenues for treating cocaine addiction. Muscarinic antagonists can mimic and enhance effects of cocaine, including discriminative stimulus (SD) effects, but the receptor subtypes mediating those...

  10. Motormouth: Mere Exposure Depends on Stimulus-Specific Motor Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topolinski, Sascha; Strack, Fritz

    2009-01-01

    The authors apply an embodied account to mere exposure, arguing that through the repeated exposure of a particular stimulus, motor responses specifically associated to that stimulus are repeatedly simulated, thus trained, and become increasingly fluent. This increased fluency drives preferences for repeated stimuli. This hypothesis was tested by…

  11. [The P300 based brain-computer interface: effect of stimulus position in a stimulus train].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganin, I P; Shishkin, S L; Kochetova, A G; Kaplan, A Ia

    2012-01-01

    The P300 brain-computer interface (BCI) is currently the most efficient BCI. This interface is based on detection of the P300 wave of the brain potentials evoked when a symbol related to the intended input is highlighted. To increase operation speed of the P300 BCI, reduction of the number of stimuli repetitions is needed. This reduction leads to increase of the relative contribution to the input symbol detection from the reaction to the first target stimulus. It is known that the event-related potentials (ERP) to the first stimulus presentations can be different from the ERP to stimuli presented latter. In particular, the amplitude of responses to the first stimulus presentations is often increased, which is beneficial for their recognition by the BCI. However, this effect was not studied within the BCI framework. The current study examined the ERP obtained from healthy participants (n = 14) in the standard P300 BCI paradigm using 10 trials, as well as in the modified P300 BCI with stimuli presented on moving objects in triple-trial (n = 6) and single-trial (n = 6) stimulation modes. Increased ERP amplitude was observed in response to the first target stimuli in both conditions, as well as in the single-trial mode comparing to triple-trial. We discuss the prospects of using the specific features of the ERP to first stimuli and the single-trial ERP for optimizing the high-speed modes in the P300 BCIs.

  12. A Computational Discriminability Analysis on Twin Fingerprints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yu; Srihari, Sargur N.

    Sharing similar genetic traits makes the investigation of twins an important study in forensics and biometrics. Fingerprints are one of the most commonly found types of forensic evidence. The similarity between twins’ prints is critical establish to the reliability of fingerprint identification. We present a quantitative analysis of the discriminability of twin fingerprints on a new data set (227 pairs of identical twins and fraternal twins) recently collected from a twin population using both level 1 and level 2 features. Although the patterns of minutiae among twins are more similar than in the general population, the similarity of fingerprints of twins is significantly different from that between genuine prints of the same finger. Twins fingerprints are discriminable with a 1.5%~1.7% higher EER than non-twins. And identical twins can be distinguished by examine fingerprint with a slightly higher error rate than fraternal twins.

  13. Does air gas aesthesiometry generate a true mechanical stimulus for corneal sensitivity measurement?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nosch, Daniela S; Pult, Heiko; Albon, Julie; Purslow, Christine; Murphy, Paul J

    2018-03-01

    Belmonte Ocular Pain Meter (OPM) air jet aesthesiometry overcomes some of the limitations of the Cochet-Bonnet aesthesiometer. However, for true mechanical corneal sensitivity measurement, the airflow stimulus temperature of the aesthesiometer must equal ocular surface temperature (OST), to avoid additional response from temperature-sensitive nerves. The aim of this study was to determine: (A) the stimulus temperature inducing no or least change in OST; and (B) to evaluate if OST remains unchanged with different stimulus durations and airflow rates. A total of 14 subjects (mean age 25.14 ± 2.18 years; seven women) participated in this clinical cohort study: (A) OST was recorded using an infrared camera (FLIR A310) during the presentation of airflow stimuli, at five temperatures, ambient temperature (AT) +5°C, +10°C, +15°C, +20°C and +30°C, using the OPM aesthesiometer (duration three seconds; over a four millimetre distance; airflow rate 60 ml/min); and (B) OST measurements were repeated with two stimulus temperatures (AT +10°C and +15°C) while varying stimulus durations (three seconds and five seconds) and airflow rates (30, 60, 80 and 100 ml/min). Inclusion criteria were age measures (analysis of variance) and appropriate post-hoc t-tests were applied. (A) Stimulus temperatures of AT +10°C and +15°C induced the least changes in OST (-0.20 ± 0.13°C and 0.08 ± 0.05°C). (B) OST changes were statistically significant with both stimulus temperatures and increased with increasing airflow rates (p air stimulus of the Belmonte OPM because its air jet stimulus with mechanical setting is likely to have a thermal component. Appropriate stimulus selection for an air jet aesthesiometer must incorporate stimulus temperature control that can vary with stimulus duration and airflow rate. © 2017 Optometry Australia.

  14. Effects of MK-801 on vicarious trial-and-error and reversal of olfactory discrimination learning in weanling rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griesbach, G S; Hu, D; Amsel, A

    1998-12-01

    The effects of dizocilpine maleate (MK-801) on vicarious trial-and-error (VTE), and on simultaneous olfactory discrimination learning and its reversal, were observed in weanling rats. The term VTE was used by Tolman (The determiners of behavior at a choice point. Psychol. Rev. 1938;46:318-336), who described it as conflict-like behavior at a choice-point in simultaneous discrimination learning. It takes the form of head movements from one stimulus to the other, and has recently been proposed by Amsel (Hippocampal function in the rat: cognitive mapping or vicarious trial-and-error? Hippocampus, 1993;3:251-256) as related to hippocampal, nonspatial function during this learning. Weanling male rats received systemic MK-801 either 30 min before the onset of olfactory discrimination training and its reversal, or only before its reversal. The MK-801-treated animals needed significantly more sessions to acquire the discrimination and showed significantly fewer VTEs in the acquisition phase of learning. Impaired reversal learning was shown only when MK-801 was administered during the reversal-learning phase, itself, and not when it was administered throughout both phases.

  15. Working memory resources are shared across sensory modalities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salmela, V R; Moisala, M; Alho, K

    2014-10-01

    A common assumption in the working memory literature is that the visual and auditory modalities have separate and independent memory stores. Recent evidence on visual working memory has suggested that resources are shared between representations, and that the precision of representations sets the limit for memory performance. We tested whether memory resources are also shared across sensory modalities. Memory precision for two visual (spatial frequency and orientation) and two auditory (pitch and tone duration) features was measured separately for each feature and for all possible feature combinations. Thus, only the memory load was varied, from one to four features, while keeping the stimuli similar. In Experiment 1, two gratings and two tones-both containing two varying features-were presented simultaneously. In Experiment 2, two gratings and two tones-each containing only one varying feature-were presented sequentially. The memory precision (delayed discrimination threshold) for a single feature was close to the perceptual threshold. However, as the number of features to be remembered was increased, the discrimination thresholds increased more than twofold. Importantly, the decrease in memory precision did not depend on the modality of the other feature(s), or on whether the features were in the same or in separate objects. Hence, simultaneously storing one visual and one auditory feature had an effect on memory precision equal to those of simultaneously storing two visual or two auditory features. The results show that working memory is limited by the precision of the stored representations, and that working memory can be described as a resource pool that is shared across modalities.

  16. Performance breakdown in optimal stimulus decoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubomir Kostal; Lansky, Petr; Pilarski, Stevan

    2015-06-01

    One of the primary goals of neuroscience is to understand how neurons encode and process information about their environment. The problem is often approached indirectly by examining the degree to which the neuronal response reflects the stimulus feature of interest. In this context, the methods of signal estimation and detection theory provide the theoretical limits on the decoding accuracy with which the stimulus can be identified. The Cramér-Rao lower bound on the decoding precision is widely used, since it can be evaluated easily once the mathematical model of the stimulus-response relationship is determined. However, little is known about the behavior of different decoding schemes with respect to the bound if the neuronal population size is limited. We show that under broad conditions the optimal decoding displays a threshold-like shift in performance in dependence on the population size. The onset of the threshold determines a critical range where a small increment in size, signal-to-noise ratio or observation time yields a dramatic gain in the decoding precision. We demonstrate the existence of such threshold regions in early auditory and olfactory information coding. We discuss the origin of the threshold effect and its impact on the design of effective coding approaches in terms of relevant population size.

  17. Retrospective Attention Interacts with Stimulus Strength to Shape Working Memory Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wildegger, Theresa; Humphreys, Glyn; Nobre, Anna C

    2016-01-01

    Orienting attention retrospectively to selective contents in working memory (WM) influences performance. A separate line of research has shown that stimulus strength shapes perceptual representations. There is little research on how stimulus strength during encoding shapes WM performance, and how effects of retrospective orienting might vary with changes in stimulus strength. We explore these questions in three experiments using a continuous-recall WM task. In Experiment 1 we show that benefits of cueing spatial attention retrospectively during WM maintenance (retrocueing) varies according to stimulus contrast during encoding. Retrocueing effects emerge for supraliminal but not sub-threshold stimuli. However, once stimuli are supraliminal, performance is no longer influenced by stimulus contrast. In Experiments 2 and 3 we used a mixture-model approach to examine how different sources of error in WM are affected by contrast and retrocueing. For high-contrast stimuli (Experiment 2), retrocues increased the precision of successfully remembered items. For low-contrast stimuli (Experiment 3), retrocues decreased the probability of mistaking a target with distracters. These results suggest that the processes by which retrospective attentional orienting shape WM performance are dependent on the quality of WM representations, which in turn depends on stimulus strength during encoding.

  18. Ability of heifers to discriminate between familiar herdmates and members of an unfamiliar group

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Koba, Yuki; Munksgaard, Lene; Tanida, Hajime

    2009-01-01

    Using a preference test and operant conditioning in a Y-maze, this experiment examined the ability of heifers to discriminate between their own familiar herdmates and member(s) of an unfamiliar group. Sixteen Danish Friesian heifers, eight older animals (360.6 ± 24.2 days of age) and eight younger...... ones (190.1 ± 14.1 days of age) were used. Each age group was further divided into two experimental groups. Members of each of these groups were housed together in small pens before the experiments began. In experiment 1, each of the 16 animals was allowed to approach either a familiar or an unfamiliar...... unfamiliar heifers. Test animals were rewarded when they chose their own group. In experiment 1, heifers did not show a preference between familiar and unfamiliar individuals. Interestingly the younger stimulus heifers but not the test animals showed an ability to discriminate between unfamiliar animals...

  19. Mechanisms underlying effects of approach-avoidance training on stimulus evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dessel, Pieter; Eder, Andreas B; Hughes, Sean

    2018-04-12

    Over the past decade an increasing number of studies across a range of domains have shown that the repeated performance of approach and avoidance (AA) actions in response to a stimulus leads to changes in the evaluation of that stimulus. The dominant (motivational-systems) account in this area claims that these effects are caused by a rewiring of mental associations between stimulus representations and AA systems that evolved to regulate distances to positive and negative stimuli. In contrast, two recently forwarded alternative accounts postulate that AA effects are caused by inferences about the valence of actions and stimuli (inferential account) or a transfer of valenced action codes to stimulus representations (common-coding account). Across four experiments we set out to test these three competing accounts against each other. Experiments 1-3 illustrate that changes in stimulus evaluations can occur when people perform valenced actions that bear no relation to a distance regulation, such as moving a manikin upward or downward. The observed evaluative effects were dependent on the evaluative implication of the instructed movement goal rather than whether the action implied a movement toward or away from the stimuli. These results could not be explained with a rewiring of associations to motivational systems. Experiment 4 showed that changes in stimulus evaluations occurred after participants passively observed approach-avoidance movements, supporting an explanation in terms of cognitive inferences. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. The Interaction of Residential Segregation and Employment Discrimination

    OpenAIRE

    Leonard, Jonathan S.

    1984-01-01

    This paper seeks to disentangle the impactof residential segregation from that of employment discrimination in determining black employment share. The major finding is that distance of a workplace from the main ghetto is one of the strongest and most significant determinants of both changes over time and levels of the racial composition of the workforce. This paper presents evidence of more heterogeneous micro labor supply within SMSA's than has usually been recognized for policy purposes. Co...

  1. Decoding stimulus features in primate somatosensory cortex during perceptual categorization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, Manuel; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2015-01-01

    Neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) respond as functions of frequency or amplitude of a vibrotactile stimulus. However, whether S1 neurons encode both frequency and amplitude of the vibrotactile stimulus or whether each sensory feature is encoded by separate populations of S1 neurons is not known, To further address these questions, we recorded S1 neurons while trained monkeys categorized only one sensory feature of the vibrotactile stimulus: frequency, amplitude, or duration. The results suggest a hierarchical encoding scheme in S1: from neurons that encode all sensory features of the vibrotactile stimulus to neurons that encode only one sensory feature. We hypothesize that the dynamic representation of each sensory feature in S1 might serve for further downstream processing that leads to the monkey’s psychophysical behavior observed in these tasks. PMID:25825711

  2. A Fundamental Study on Influence of Concurrently Presented Visual Stimulus Upon Loudness Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koji Abe

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available As a basic study on the influence of the dynamic properties of the audio-visual stimuli upon interaction between audition and vision, the effect of the simple movement involved in the visual stimulus on the loudness perception of the audio stimulus was investigated via psychophysical experiment. In this experiment, the visual stimulus given to subjects along with the audio stimulus is a bar appeared on a display, one side of which is flexibly expanding and contracting. The loudness of the audio stimulus with such a visual effect concurrently presented was rated as an absolute numerical value by using the Magnitude Estimation method. The reference of the bar length is determined so as to correspond to the Zwicker's loudness calculated for the given audio stimulus. As a result, the visual stimulus did not affect the loudness perception, when the bar was presented with its length same as the reference. On the other hand, the rating of the loudness for the same audio stimulus was significantly increased when the bar length was longer than the reference. This indicates that the change in the correspondence between the audio and the visual stimuli affect the loudness perception.

  3. Electrophysiological Correlates of Changes in Reaction Time Based on Stimulus Intensity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakhani, Bimal; Vette, Albert H.; Mansfield, Avril; Miyasike-daSilva, Veronica; McIlroy, William E.

    2012-01-01

    Background Although reaction time is commonly used as an indicator of central nervous system integrity, little is currently understood about the mechanisms that determine processing time. In the current study, we are interested in determining the differences in electrophysiological events associated with significant changes in reaction time that could be elicited by changes in stimulus intensity. The primary objective is to assess the effect of increasing stimulus intensity on the latency and amplitude of afferent inputs to the somatosensory cortex, and their relation to reaction time. Methods Median nerve stimulation was applied to the non-dominant hand of 12 healthy young adults at two different stimulus intensities (HIGH & LOW). Participants were asked to either press a button as fast as possible with their dominant hand or remain quiet following the stimulus. Electroencephalography was used to measure somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) and event related potentials (ERPs). Electromyography from the flexor digitorum superficialis of the button-pressing hand was used to assess reaction time. Response time was the time of button press. Results Reaction time and response time were significantly shorter following the HIGH intensity stimulus compared to the LOW intensity stimulus. There were no differences in SEP (N20 & P24) peak latencies and peak-to-peak amplitude for the two stimulus intensities. ERPs, locked to response time, demonstrated a significantly larger pre-movement negativity to positivity following the HIGH intensity stimulus over the Cz electrode. Discussion This work demonstrates that rapid reaction times are not attributable to the latency of afferent processing from the stimulated site to the somatosensory cortex, and those latency reductions occur further along the sensorimotor transformation pathway. Evidence from ERPs indicates that frontal planning areas such as the supplementary motor area may play a role in transforming the elevated sensory

  4. Modeling stimulus variation in three common implicit attitude tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolsiefer, Katie; Westfall, Jacob; Judd, Charles M

    2017-08-01

    We explored the consequences of ignoring the sampling variation due to stimuli in the domain of implicit attitudes. A large literature in psycholinguistics has examined the statistical treatment of random stimulus materials, but the recommendations from this literature have not been applied to the social psychological literature on implicit attitudes. This is partly because of inherent complications in applying crossed random-effect models to some of the most common implicit attitude tasks, and partly because no work to date has demonstrated that random stimulus variation is in fact consequential in implicit attitude measurement. We addressed this problem by laying out statistically appropriate and practically feasible crossed random-effect models for three of the most commonly used implicit attitude measures-the Implicit Association Test, affect misattribution procedure, and evaluative priming task-and then applying these models to large datasets (average N = 3,206) that assess participants' implicit attitudes toward race, politics, and self-esteem. We showed that the test statistics from the traditional analyses are substantially (about 60 %) inflated relative to the more-appropriate analyses that incorporate stimulus variation. Because all three tasks used the same stimulus words and faces, we could also meaningfully compare the relative contributions of stimulus variation across the tasks. In an appendix, we give syntax in R, SAS, and SPSS for fitting the recommended crossed random-effects models to data from all three tasks, as well as instructions on how to structure the data file.

  5. Retrospective Attention Interacts with Stimulus Strength to Shape Working Memory Performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theresa Wildegger

    Full Text Available Orienting attention retrospectively to selective contents in working memory (WM influences performance. A separate line of research has shown that stimulus strength shapes perceptual representations. There is little research on how stimulus strength during encoding shapes WM performance, and how effects of retrospective orienting might vary with changes in stimulus strength. We explore these questions in three experiments using a continuous-recall WM task. In Experiment 1 we show that benefits of cueing spatial attention retrospectively during WM maintenance (retrocueing varies according to stimulus contrast during encoding. Retrocueing effects emerge for supraliminal but not sub-threshold stimuli. However, once stimuli are supraliminal, performance is no longer influenced by stimulus contrast. In Experiments 2 and 3 we used a mixture-model approach to examine how different sources of error in WM are affected by contrast and retrocueing. For high-contrast stimuli (Experiment 2, retrocues increased the precision of successfully remembered items. For low-contrast stimuli (Experiment 3, retrocues decreased the probability of mistaking a target with distracters. These results suggest that the processes by which retrospective attentional orienting shape WM performance are dependent on the quality of WM representations, which in turn depends on stimulus strength during encoding.

  6. Stimulus Modality and Smoking Behavior: Moderating Role of Implicit Attitudes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ezeh, Valentine C; Mefoh, Philip

    2015-07-20

    This study investigated whether stimulus modality influences smoking behavior among smokers in South Eastern Nigeria and also whether implicit attitudes moderate the relationship between stimulus modality and smoking behavior. 60 undergraduate students of University of Nigeria, Nsukka were used. Participants were individually administered the IAT task as a measure of implicit attitude toward smoking and randomly assigned into either image condition that paired images of cigarette with aversive images of potential health consequences or text condition that paired images of cigarette with aversive texts of potential health consequences. A one- predictor and one-moderator binary logistic analysis indicates that stimulus modality significantly predicts smoking behavior (p = smoke with greater probability than the text condition. The interaction between stimulus modality and IAT scores was also significant (p = attitudes towards smoking. The finding shows the urgent need to introduce the use of aversive images of potential health consequences on cigarette packs in Nigeria.

  7. Encoding efficiency of suprathreshold stochastic resonance on stimulus-specific information

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duan, Fabing, E-mail: fabing.duan@gmail.com [Institute of Complexity Science, Qingdao University, Qingdao 266071 (China); Chapeau-Blondeau, François, E-mail: chapeau@univ-angers.fr [Laboratoire Angevin de Recherche en Ingénierie des Systèmes (LARIS), Université d' Angers, 62 avenue Notre Dame du Lac, 49000 Angers (France); Abbott, Derek, E-mail: derek.abbott@adelaide.edu.au [Centre for Biomedical Engineering (CBME) and School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA 5005 (Australia)

    2016-01-08

    In this paper, we evaluate the encoding efficiency of suprathreshold stochastic resonance (SSR) based on a local information-theoretic measure of stimulus-specific information (SSI), which is the average specific information of responses associated with a particular stimulus. The theoretical and numerical analyses of SSIs reveal that noise can improve neuronal coding efficiency for a large population of neurons, which leads to produce increased information-rich responses. The SSI measure, in contrast to the global measure of average mutual information, can characterize the noise benefits in finer detail for describing the enhancement of neuronal encoding efficiency of a particular stimulus, which may be of general utility in the design and implementation of a SSR coding scheme. - Highlights: • Evaluating the noise-enhanced encoding efficiency via stimulus-specific information. • New form of stochastic resonance based on the measure of encoding efficiency. • Analyzing neural encoding schemes from suprathreshold stochastic resonance detailedly.

  8. Differential discriminator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dukhanov, V.I.; Mazurov, I.B.

    1981-01-01

    A principal flowsheet of a differential discriminator intended for operation in a spectrometric circuit with statistical time distribution of pulses is described. The differential discriminator includes four integrated discriminators and a channel of piled-up signal rejection. The presence of the rejection channel enables the discriminator to operate effectively at loads of 14x10 3 pulse/s. The temperature instability of the discrimination thresholds equals 250 μV/ 0 C. The discrimination level changes within 0.1-5 V, the level shift constitutes 0.5% for the filling ratio of 1:10. The rejection coefficient is not less than 90%. Alpha spectrum of the 228 Th source is presented to evaluate the discriminator operation with the rejector. The rejector provides 50 ns time resolution

  9. Structural Discrimination

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thorsen, Mira Skadegård

    discrimination as two ways of articulating particular, opaque forms of racial discrimination that occur in everyday Danish (and other) contexts, and have therefore become normalized. I present and discuss discrimination as it surfaces in data from my empirical studies of discrimination in Danish contexts...

  10. Selective increase of auditory cortico-striatal coherence during auditory-cued Go/NoGo discrimination learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas L. Schulz

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Goal directed behavior and associated learning processes are tightly linked to neuronal activity in the ventral striatum. Mechanisms that integrate task relevant sensory information into striatal processing during decision making and learning are implicitly assumed in current reinforcementmodels, yet they are still weakly understood. To identify the functional activation of cortico-striatal subpopulations of connections during auditory discrimination learning, we trained Mongolian gerbils in a two-way active avoidance task in a shuttlebox to discriminate between falling and rising frequency modulated tones with identical spectral properties. We assessed functional coupling by analyzing the field-field coherence between the auditory cortex and the ventral striatum of animals performing the task. During the course of training, we observed a selective increase of functionalcoupling during Go-stimulus presentations. These results suggest that the auditory cortex functionally interacts with the ventral striatum during auditory learning and that the strengthening of these functional connections is selectively goal-directed.

  11. Stimulus-dependent maximum entropy models of neural population codes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Einat Granot-Atedgi

    Full Text Available Neural populations encode information about their stimulus in a collective fashion, by joint activity patterns of spiking and silence. A full account of this mapping from stimulus to neural activity is given by the conditional probability distribution over neural codewords given the sensory input. For large populations, direct sampling of these distributions is impossible, and so we must rely on constructing appropriate models. We show here that in a population of 100 retinal ganglion cells in the salamander retina responding to temporal white-noise stimuli, dependencies between cells play an important encoding role. We introduce the stimulus-dependent maximum entropy (SDME model-a minimal extension of the canonical linear-nonlinear model of a single neuron, to a pairwise-coupled neural population. We find that the SDME model gives a more accurate account of single cell responses and in particular significantly outperforms uncoupled models in reproducing the distributions of population codewords emitted in response to a stimulus. We show how the SDME model, in conjunction with static maximum entropy models of population vocabulary, can be used to estimate information-theoretic quantities like average surprise and information transmission in a neural population.

  12. CPM Test-Retest Reliability: "Standard" vs "Single Test-Stimulus" Protocols.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granovsky, Yelena; Miller-Barmak, Adi; Goldstein, Oren; Sprecher, Elliot; Yarnitsky, David

    2016-03-01

    Assessment of pain inhibitory mechanisms using conditioned pain modulation (CPM) is relevant clinically in prediction of pain and analgesic efficacy. Our objective is to provide necessary estimates of intersession CPM reliability, to enable transformation of the CPM paradigm into a clinical tool. Two cohorts of young healthy subjects (N = 65) participated in two dual-session studies. In Study I, a Bath-Thermode CPM protocol was used, with hot water immersion and contact heat as conditioning- and test-stimuli, respectively, in a classical parallel CPM design introducing test-stimulus first, and then the conditioning- and repeated test-stimuli in parallel. Study II consisted of two CPM protocols: 1) Two-Thermodes, one for each of the stimuli, in the same parallel design as above, and 2) single test-stimulus (STS) protocol with a single administration of a contact heat test-stimulus, partially overlapped in time by a remote shorter contact heat as conditioning stimulus. Test-retest reliability was assessed within 3-7 days. The STS-CPM had superior reliability intraclass correlation (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.59) over Bath-Thermode (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.34) or Two-Thermodes (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.21) protocols. The hand immersion conditioning pain had higher reliability than thermode pain (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.76 vs ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.16). Conditioned test-stimulus pain scores were of good (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.62) or fair (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.43) reliability for the Bath-Thermode and the STS, respectively, but not for the Two-Thermodes protocol (ICC 2 ,: 1  = 0.20). The newly developed STS-CPM paradigm was more reliable than other CPM protocols tested here, and should be further investigated for its clinical relevance. It appears that large contact size of the conditioning-stimulus and use of single rather than dual test-stimulus pain contribute to augmentation of CPM reliability. © 2015 American Academy of Pain Medicine. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e

  13. Open Access Data Sharing in Genomic Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stacey Pereira

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The current emphasis on broad sharing of human genomic data generated in research in order to maximize utility and public benefit is a significant legacy of the Human Genome Project. Concerns about privacy and discrimination have led to policy responses that restrict access to genomic data as the means for protecting research participants. Our research and experience show, however, that a considerable number of research participants agree to open access sharing of their genomic data when given the choice. General policies that limit access to all genomic data fail to respect the autonomy of these participants and, at the same time, unnecessarily limit the utility of the data. We advocate instead a more balanced approach that allows for individual choice and encourages informed decision making, while protecting against the misuse of genomic data through enhanced legislation.

  14. Visual discrimination transfer and modulation by biogenic amines in honeybees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, Amanda Rodrigues; Salles, Nayara; Borges, Marco; Mota, Theo

    2018-05-10

    For more than a century, visual learning and memory have been studied in the honeybee Apis mellifera using operant appetitive conditioning. Although honeybees show impressive visual learning capacities in this well-established protocol, operant training of free-flying animals cannot be combined with invasive protocols for studying the neurobiological basis of visual learning. In view of this, different attempts have been made to develop new classical conditioning protocols for studying visual learning in harnessed honeybees, though learning performance remains considerably poorer than that for free-flying animals. Here, we investigated the ability of honeybees to use visual information acquired during classical conditioning in a new operant context. We performed differential visual conditioning of the proboscis extension reflex (PER) followed by visual orientation tests in a Y-maze. Classical conditioning and Y-maze retention tests were performed using the same pair of perceptually isoluminant chromatic stimuli, to avoid the influence of phototaxis during free-flying orientation. Visual discrimination transfer was clearly observed, with pre-trained honeybees significantly orienting their flights towards the former positive conditioned stimulus (CS+), thus showing that visual memories acquired by honeybees are resistant to context changes between conditioning and the retention test. We combined this visual discrimination approach with selective pharmacological injections to evaluate the effect of dopamine and octopamine in appetitive visual learning. Both octopaminergic and dopaminergic antagonists impaired visual discrimination performance, suggesting that both these biogenic amines modulate appetitive visual learning in honeybees. Our study brings new insight into cognitive and neurobiological mechanisms underlying visual learning in honeybees. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. Stimulus Sensitivity of a Spiking Neural Network Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevallier, Julien

    2018-02-01

    Some recent papers relate the criticality of complex systems to their maximal capacity of information processing. In the present paper, we consider high dimensional point processes, known as age-dependent Hawkes processes, which have been used to model spiking neural networks. Using mean-field approximation, the response of the network to a stimulus is computed and we provide a notion of stimulus sensitivity. It appears that the maximal sensitivity is achieved in the sub-critical regime, yet almost critical for a range of biologically relevant parameters.

  16. From bird to sparrow: Learning-induced modulations in fine-grained semantic discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Meo, Rosanna; Bourquin, Nathalie M-P; Knebel, Jean-François; Murray, Micah M; Clarke, Stephanie

    2015-09-01

    Recognition of environmental sounds is believed to proceed through discrimination steps from broad to more narrow categories. Very little is known about the neural processes that underlie fine-grained discrimination within narrow categories or about their plasticity in relation to newly acquired expertise. We investigated how the cortical representation of birdsongs is modulated by brief training to recognize individual species. During a 60-minute session, participants learned to recognize a set of birdsongs; they improved significantly their performance for trained (T) but not control species (C), which were counterbalanced across participants. Auditory evoked potentials (AEPs) were recorded during pre- and post-training sessions. Pre vs. post changes in AEPs were significantly different between T and C i) at 206-232ms post stimulus onset within a cluster on the anterior part of the left superior temporal gyrus; ii) at 246-291ms in the left middle frontal gyrus; and iii) 512-545ms in the left middle temporal gyrus as well as bilaterally in the cingulate cortex. All effects were driven by weaker activity for T than C species. Thus, expertise in discriminating T species modulated early stages of semantic processing, during and immediately after the time window that sustains the discrimination between human vs. animal vocalizations. Moreover, the training-induced plasticity is reflected by the sharpening of a left lateralized semantic network, including the anterior part of the temporal convexity and the frontal cortex. Training to identify birdsongs influenced, however, also the processing of C species, but at a much later stage. Correct discrimination of untrained sounds seems to require an additional step which results from lower-level features analysis such as apperception. We therefore suggest that the access to objects within an auditory semantic category is different and depends on subject's level of expertise. More specifically, correct intra

  17. Multisensory interaction in vibrotactile detection and discrimination of amplitude modulation: insights from expert MFS surgeons and naive participants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Korman Maria

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Perception of vibration during drilling demands integration of haptic and auditory information with force information. In this study we explored the ability to detect and discriminate changes in vibrotactile stimuli amplitude based either on purely haptic feedback or together with congruent synthesized auditory cues in groups of naive subjects and expert surgeons. Our results point toward the complex influence of multimodal experience during vibration perception. First, in naive subjects, we showed that detection and discrimination of amplitude change in complex vibro-tactile stimulus is selectively sensitive to combination of modality and previous experience. In the domain of discrimination, our results suggest that bi-modal performance is always better than uni-modal performance regardless of order of experience. Second, experiments with expert surgeons revealed that expertise in complex skill of maxilla-facial surgery strongly relies on enhanced touch perception, as measured in reaction times and discrimination ability in bi-modal vibro-auditory conditions. These observations suggest that acquisition of mandibular surgery skill has brought to an enhanced representation of vibro-tactile modulations in relevant stimuli ranges. Altogether, our results provide basis to assume that during acquisition of mandibular drilling skill, trainees may benefit from training of relevant basic aspects of touch perception - sensitivity to vibration and accompanying modulations of sound.

  18. Examining Workplace Discrimination in a Discrimination-Free Environment

    OpenAIRE

    Braxton, Shawn Lamont

    2010-01-01

    Examining Workplace Discrimination in a Discrimination-Free Environment Shawn L. Braxton Abstract The purpose of this study is to explore how racial and gender discrimination is reproduced in concrete workplace settings even when anti-discrimination policies are present, and to understand the various reactions utilized by those who commonly experience it. I have selected a particular medical center, henceforth referred to by a pseudonym, â The Bliley Medical Centerâ as my case ...

  19. Linear Discriminant Analysis achieves high classification accuracy for the BOLD fMRI response to naturalistic movie stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hendrik eMandelkow

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Naturalistic stimuli like movies evoke complex perceptual processes, which are of great interest in the study of human cognition by functional MRI (fMRI. However, conventional fMRI analysis based on statistical parametric mapping (SPM and the general linear model (GLM is hampered by a lack of accurate parametric models of the BOLD response to complex stimuli. In this situation, statistical machine-learning methods, a.k.a. multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA, have received growing attention for their ability to generate stimulus response models in a data-driven fashion. However, machine-learning methods typically require large amounts of training data as well as computational resources. In the past this has largely limited their application to fMRI experiments involving small sets of stimulus categories and small regions of interest in the brain. By contrast, the present study compares several classification algorithms known as Nearest Neighbour (NN, Gaussian Naïve Bayes (GNB, and (regularised Linear Discriminant Analysis (LDA in terms of their classification accuracy in discriminating the global fMRI response patterns evoked by a large number of naturalistic visual stimuli presented as a movie.Results show that LDA regularised by principal component analysis (PCA achieved high classification accuracies, above 90% on average for single fMRI volumes acquired 2s apart during a 300s movie (chance level 0.7% = 2s/300s. The largest source of classification errors were autocorrelations in the BOLD signal compounded by the similarity of consecutive stimuli. All classifiers performed best when given input features from a large region of interest comprising around 25% of the voxels that responded significantly to the visual stimulus. Consistent with this, the most informative principal components represented widespread distributions of co-activated brain regions that were similar between subjects and may represent functional networks. In light of these

  20. Deletion of the forebrain mineralocorticoid receptor impairs social discrimination and decision-making in male, but not in female mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ter Horst, Judith P; van der Mark, Maaike; Kentrop, Jiska; Arp, Marit; van der Veen, Rixt; de Kloet, E Ronald; Oitzl, Melly S

    2014-01-01

    Social interaction with unknown individuals requires fast processing of information to decide whether it is friend or foe. This process of discrimination and decision-making is stressful and triggers secretion of corticosterone activating mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR). The MR is involved in appraisal of novel experiences and risk assessment. Recently, we have demonstrated in a dual-solution memory task that MR plays a role in the early stage of information processing and decision-making. Here we examined social approach and social discrimination in male and female mice lacking MR from hippocampal-amygdala-prefrontal circuitry and controls. The social approach task allows the assessment of time spent with an unfamiliar mouse and the ability to discriminate between familiar and unfamiliar conspecifics. The male and female test mice were both more interested in the social than the non-social experience and deletion of their limbic MR increased the time spent with an unfamiliar mouse. Unlike controls, the male MR(CaMKCre) mice were not able to discriminate between an unfamiliar and the familiar mouse. However, the female MR mutant had retained the discriminative ability between unfamiliar and familiar mice. Administration of the MR antagonist RU28318 to male mice supported the role of the MR in the discrimination between an unfamiliar mouse and a non-social stimulus. No effect was found with a GR antagonist. Our findings suggest that MR is involved in sociability and social discrimination in a sex-specific manner through inhibitory control exerted putatively via limbic-hippocampal efferents. The ability to discriminate between familiar and unfamiliar conspecifics is of uttermost importance for territorial defense and depends on a role of MR in decision-making.

  1. Stimulus number, duration and intensity encoding in randomly connected attractor networks with synaptic depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul eMiller

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Randomly connected recurrent networks of excitatory groups of neurons can possess a multitude of attractor states. When the internal excitatory synapses of these networks are depressing, the attractor states can be destabilized with increasing input. This leads to an itinerancy, where with either repeated transient stimuli, or increasing duration of a single stimulus, the network activity advances through sequences of attractor states. We find that the resulting network state, which persists beyond stimulus offset, can encode the number of stimuli presented via a distributed representation of neural activity with non-monotonic tuning curves for most neurons. Increased duration of a single stimulus is encoded via different distributed representations, so unlike an integrator, the network distinguishes separate successive presentations of a short stimulus from a single presentation of a longer stimulus with equal total duration. Moreover, different amplitudes of stimulus cause new, distinct activity patterns, such that changes in stimulus number, duration and amplitude can be distinguished from each other. These properties of the network depend on dynamic depressing synapses, as they disappear if synapses are static. Thus short-term synaptic depression allows a network to store separately the different dynamic properties of a spatially constant stimulus.

  2. Spike detection, characterization, and discrimination using feature analysis software written in LabVIEW.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, C M; Newlands, S D; Perachio, A A

    2004-12-01

    Rapid and accurate discrimination of single units from extracellular recordings is a fundamental process for the analysis and interpretation of electrophysiological recordings. We present an algorithm that performs detection, characterization, discrimination, and analysis of action potentials from extracellular recording sessions. The program was entirely written in LabVIEW (National Instruments), and requires no external hardware devices or a priori information about action potential shapes. Waveform events are detected by scanning the digital record for voltages that exceed a user-adjustable trigger. Detected events are characterized to determine nine different time and voltage levels for each event. Various algebraic combinations of these waveform features are used as axis choices for 2-D Cartesian plots of events. The user selects axis choices that generate distinct clusters. Multiple clusters may be defined as action potentials by manually generating boundaries of arbitrary shape. Events defined as action potentials are validated by visual inspection of overlain waveforms. Stimulus-response relationships may be identified by selecting any recorded channel for comparison to continuous and average cycle histograms of binned unit data. The algorithm includes novel aspects of feature analysis and acquisition, including higher acquisition rates for electrophysiological data compared to other channels. The program confirms that electrophysiological data may be discriminated with high-speed and efficiency using algebraic combinations of waveform features derived from high-speed digital records.

  3. BAHAN AJAR MENULIS CERITA FABEL DENGAN STIMULUS FILM FINDING NEMO

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lia Noviana Qostantia

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available This research objectives were (1 describing instructional material of writing fable story using stimulus of finding nemo movie and (2 describing instructional material feasibility of writing fable story using stimulus of Finding Nemo movie that obtained from expert test and practitioner (teacher and student test. The developed instructional material was complementary book of writing fable story for students with material, language, and book display that adjusted with student’s needs. Those objectives could be made as guidance in developing the instructional material which including material content feasibility, language, and complementary book display aspect. Tujuan penelitian ini adalah (1 mengembangkan bahan ajar menulis cerita fabel dengan stimulus film finding nemo, (2 mendeskripsikan kelayakan bahan ajar menulis cerita fabel dengan stimulus film Finding Nemo yang diperoleh dari uji ahli, uji praktisi guru, dan siswa. Bahan ajar yang dikembangkan berupa buku pelengkap menulis cerita fabel untuk siswa dengan materi, bahasa, dan penyajian buku yang disesuaikan dengan kebutuhan siswa. Tujuan tersebut dapat dijadikan panduan dalam mengembangkan bahan ajar yang mencakup aspek kelayakan isi materi, bahasa, dan penyajian buku pelengkap.

  4. Temporal neural mechanisms underlying conscious access to different levels of facial stimulus contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Shen-Mou; Yang, Yu-Fang

    2018-04-01

    An important issue facing the empirical study of consciousness concerns how the contents of incoming stimuli gain access to conscious processing. According to classic theories, facial stimuli are processed in a hierarchical manner. However, it remains unclear how the brain determines which level of stimulus content is consciously accessible when facing an incoming facial stimulus. Accordingly, with a magnetoencephalography technique, this study aims to investigate the temporal dynamics of the neural mechanism mediating which level of stimulus content is consciously accessible. Participants were instructed to view masked target faces at threshold so that, according to behavioral responses, their perceptual awareness alternated from consciously accessing facial identity in some trials to being able to consciously access facial configuration features but not facial identity in other trials. Conscious access at these two levels of facial contents were associated with a series of differential neural events. Before target presentation, different patterns of phase angle adjustment were observed between the two types of conscious access. This effect was followed by stronger phase clustering for awareness of facial identity immediately during stimulus presentation. After target onset, conscious access to facial identity, as opposed to facial configural features, was able to elicit more robust late positivity. In conclusion, we suggest that the stages of neural events, ranging from prestimulus to stimulus-related activities, may operate in combination to determine which level of stimulus contents is consciously accessed. Conscious access may thus be better construed as comprising various forms that depend on the level of stimulus contents accessed. NEW & NOTEWORTHY The present study investigates how the brain determines which level of stimulus contents is consciously accessible when facing an incoming facial stimulus. Using magnetoencephalography, we show that prestimulus

  5. Comparison on driving fatigue related hemodynamics activated by auditory and visual stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Zishan; Gao, Yuan; Li, Ting

    2018-02-01

    As one of the main causes of traffic accidents, driving fatigue deserves researchers' attention and its detection and monitoring during long-term driving require a new technique to realize. Since functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) can be applied to detect cerebral hemodynamic responses, we can promisingly expect its application in fatigue level detection. Here, we performed three different kinds of experiments on a driver and recorded his cerebral hemodynamic responses when driving for long hours utilizing our device based on fNIRS. Each experiment lasted for 7 hours and one of the three specific experimental tests, detecting the driver's response to sounds, traffic lights and direction signs respectively, was done every hour. The results showed that visual stimulus was easier to cause fatigue compared with auditory stimulus and visual stimulus induced by traffic lights scenes was easier to cause fatigue compared with visual stimulus induced by direction signs in the first few hours. We also found that fatigue related hemodynamics caused by auditory stimulus increased fastest, then traffic lights scenes, and direction signs scenes slowest. Our study successfully compared audio, visual color, and visual character stimulus in sensitivity to cause driving fatigue, which is meaningful for driving safety management.

  6. Conditional withholding of proboscis extension in honeybees (Apis mellifera) during discriminative punishment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, B H; Abramson, C I; Tobin, T R

    1991-12-01

    Proboscis extension conditioning of honeybee workers was used to test the ability of bees to respond to appetitive and aversive stimuli while restrained in a harness that allows subjects to move their antennae and mouthparts (Kuwabara, 1957; Menzel, Erber, & Masuhr, 1974). Subjects were conditioned to discriminate between two odors, one associated with sucrose feeding and the other associated with a 10 V AC shock if they responded to the sucrose unconditioned stimulus (US) in the context of that odor. Most Ss readily learned to respond to the odor followed by sucrose feeding and not to the odor associated with sucrose stimulation plus shock. Furthermore, in the context of the odor associated with shock, significantly more subjects withheld or delayed proboscis extension on stimulation with the sucrose US than they did in the context of the odor associated with feeding. Thus, restrained honeybees can readily learn to avoid shock according to an odor context by withholding proboscis extension to a normally powerful releaser. Analysis of individual learning curves revealed that subjects differed markedly in performance on this task. Some learn the discrimination quickly, whereas others show different kinds of response patterns.

  7. Perceptions of Everyday Interpersonal Discrimination among Young Men of Turkish Background in Cologne

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik Hartmann

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available

    This small-scale, qualitative study examines how five young male second-generation Turkish immigrants perceive racial discrimination by ethnic Germans and to what extent this perception influences their collective identities. The typology of interactional patterns the interviewees describe as racial discrimination has four elements: a perception of distrust, a distancing gaze, denial of belonging and rule enforcement by members of the German majority. The interviewees, particularly those who are highly educated and socially mobile, identify with a common Ausländer (foreigner identity in response to experiences of discrimination. This identity is regarded a shared identity marker by immigrants of different backgrounds. It appears as a positive and affirmative identity of difference, which creates a unique type of social capital.

  8. Estímulo discriminativo de extinção produzido por respostas de observação em pombos Discriminative stimulus of extinction produced by observing responses in pigeons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerson Yukio Tomanari

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Pombos privados de comida foram expostos a tentativas que podiam terminar com ou sem a apresentação de comida independentemente de qualquer resposta. Durante uma tentativa, bicadas podiam mudar a cor do disco de resposta de branco para verde (S+ ou vermelho (S- a depender do acionamento (ou não do comedouro. Em linha de base, bicadas produziam ambas as cores em intervalos médios variáveis de 15 s. Em duas condições experimentais distintas, tandem VI DRH foi empregado na produção, ora de S+, ora de S-. Resultados mostraram que o esquema tandem levou a uma diminuição geral na freqüência de estímulos discriminativos produzidos, marcadamente na de S+, mas não na de S-. Esses dados fornecem suporte para o modelo de reforçamento condicionado baseado na redução da incerteza.Food-deprived pigeons were given a series of trials in which half ended with response- independent food presentation and half without it. During a trial, pecking the key could change its color from white to green (S+ or red (S-, depending on whether food was programmed or not. In baseline conditions, pecks produced both stimuli (colors on a 15-s variable-interval schedule. In two different conditions, tandem VI DRH was applied to produce either S+ or S-. Results showed that the tandem contingency resulted in a general decrease in the discriminative stimulus production, markedly to S+, but not to S-. The findings are consistent with the uncertainty-reduction model of conditioned reinforcement.

  9. Left occipitotemporal cortex contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions: fMRI and TMS evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perini, Francesca; Caramazza, Alfonso; Peelen, Marius V

    2014-01-01

    Functional neuroimaging studies have implicated the left lateral occipitotemporal cortex (LOTC) in both tool and hand perception but the functional role of this region is not fully known. Here, by using a task manipulation, we tested whether tool-/hand-selective LOTC contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions. Participants viewed briefly presented pictures of kitchen and garage tools while they performed one of two tasks: in the action task, they judged whether the tool is associated with a hand rotation action (e.g., screwdriver) or a hand squeeze action (e.g., garlic press), while in the location task they judged whether the tool is typically found in the kitchen (e.g., garlic press) or in the garage (e.g., screwdriver). Both tasks were performed on the same stimulus set and were matched for difficulty. Contrasting fMRI responses between these tasks showed stronger activity during the action task than the location task in both tool- and hand-selective LOTC regions, which closely overlapped. No differences were found in nearby object- and motion-selective control regions. Importantly, these findings were confirmed by a TMS study, which showed that effective TMS over the tool-/hand-selective LOTC region significantly slowed responses for tool action discriminations relative to tool location discriminations, with no such difference during sham TMS. We conclude that left LOTC contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions.

  10. Visual stimulus parameters seriously compromise the measurement of approximate number system acuity and comparative effects between adults and children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denes eSzucs

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that a simple non-symbolic magnitude comparison task is sufficient to measure the acuity of a putative Approximate Number System (ANS. A proposed measure of the ANS, the so-called 'internal Weber fraction' (w, would provide a clear measure of ANS acuity. However, ANS studies have never presented adequate evidence that the visual stimulus parameters did not compromise measurements of w to such extent that w is actually driven by visual instead of numerical processes. We therefore investigated this question by testing non-symbolic magnitude discrimination in seven-year-old children and adults. We controlled for visual parameters in a more stringent manner than usual. As a consequence of these controls, in some trials numerical cues correlated positively with number while in others they correlated negatively with number. This congruency effect strongly correlated with w, which means that congruency effects were probably driving effects in w. Consequently, in both adults and children congruency had a major impact on the fit of the model underlying the computation of w. Furthermore, children showed larger congruency effects than adults. This suggests that ANS tasks are seriously compromised by the visual stimulus parameters, which cannot be controlled. Hence, they are not pure measures of the ANS and some putative w or ratio effect differences between children and adults in previous ANS studies may be due to the differential influence of the visual stimulus parameters in children and adults. In addition, because the resolution of congruency effects relies on inhibitory (interference suppression function, some previous ANS findings were probably influenced by the developmental state of inhibitory processes especially when comparing children with developmental dyscalculia and typically developing children.

  11. Imitation and "Theory of Mind" Competencies in Discrimination of Autism from Other Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perra, Oliver; Williams, Justin H. G.; Whiten, Andrew; Fraser, Lesley; Benzie, Helen; Perrett, David I.

    2008-01-01

    Several studies have reported imitative deficits in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, it is still debated if imitative deficits are specific to ASD or shared with clinical groups with similar mental impairment and motor difficulties. We investigated whether imitative tasks can be used to discriminate ASD children from typically developing…

  12. Longitudinal investigation on learned helplessness tested under negative and positive reinforcement involving stimulus control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Emileane C; Hunziker, Maria Helena

    2014-07-01

    In this study, we investigated whether (a) animals demonstrating the learned helplessness effect during an escape contingency also show learning deficits under positive reinforcement contingencies involving stimulus control and (b) the exposure to positive reinforcement contingencies eliminates the learned helplessness effect under an escape contingency. Rats were initially exposed to controllable (C), uncontrollable (U) or no (N) shocks. After 24h, they were exposed to 60 escapable shocks delivered in a shuttlebox. In the following phase, we selected from each group the four subjects that presented the most typical group pattern: no escape learning (learned helplessness effect) in Group U and escape learning in Groups C and N. All subjects were then exposed to two phases, the (1) positive reinforcement for lever pressing under a multiple FR/Extinction schedule and (2) a re-test under negative reinforcement (escape). A fourth group (n=4) was exposed only to the positive reinforcement sessions. All subjects showed discrimination learning under multiple schedule. In the escape re-test, the learned helplessness effect was maintained for three of the animals in Group U. These results suggest that the learned helplessness effect did not extend to discriminative behavior that is positively reinforced and that the learned helplessness effect did not revert for most subjects after exposure to positive reinforcement. We discuss some theoretical implications as related to learned helplessness as an effect restricted to aversive contingencies and to the absence of reversion after positive reinforcement. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: insert SI title. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  13. Do People Take Stimulus Correlations into Account in Visual Search (Open Source)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-03-10

    RESEARCH ARTICLE Do People Take Stimulus Correlations into Account in Visual Search? Manisha Bhardwaj1, Ronald van den Berg2,3, Wei Ji Ma2,4...journal.pone.0149402 March 10, 2016 1 / 16 OPEN ACCESS Citation: Bhardwaj M, van den Berg R, Ma WJ, Josić K (2016) Do People Take Stimulus Correlations into...different values of ρ, larger set sizes, and more extensive training could shed more light on how exactly people misestimate stimulus correlations in

  14. Contributions from eye movement potentials to stimulus preceding negativity during anticipation of auditory stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engdahl, Lis; Bjerre, Vicky K; Christoffersen, Gert R J

    2007-01-01

    Cognitive anticipation of a stimulus has been associated with an ERP called "stimulus preceding negativity" (SPN). A new auditory delay task without stimulus-related motor activity demonstrated a prefrontal SPN, present during attentive anticipation of sounds with closed eyes, but absent during d...

  15. DISCRIMINANT ANALYSIS OF BANK PROFITABILITY LEVELS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ante Rozga

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Discriminant analysis has been employed in this paper in order to identify and explain key features of bank profitability levels. Bank profitability is set up in the form of two categorical variables: profit or loss recorded and above or below average return on equity. Predictor variables are selected from various groups of financial indicators usually included in the empirical work on microeconomic determinants of bank profitability. The data from the Croatian banking sector is analyzed using the Enter method. General recommendations for a more profitable business of banking found in the bank management literature and existing empirical framework such as rationalization of overhead costs, asset growth, increase of non-interest income by expanding scale and scope of financial products proved to be important for classification of banks in different profitability levels. A higher market share may bring additional advantages. Classification results, canonical correlation and Wilks’ Lambda test confirm statistical significance of research results. Altogether, discriminant analysis turns out to be a suitable statistical method for solving presented research problem and moving forward from the bankruptcy, credit rating or default issues in finance.

  16. Phenomenology and Clinical Correlates of Stimulus-Bound Tics in Gilles de la Tourette Syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piotr Janik

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Stimulus-bound tics (SBTs belong to stimulus-induced behaviors and are defined as tics that occur in response to internal or external stimuli. The aim of the study was to assess the prevalence and associations of SBTs with other stimulus-triggered behaviors, premonitory urges and stimulus sensitization in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome (GTS.Methods: We performed a prospective, one-registration study in a cohort of 140 consecutive patients with GTS. Duration of GTS was 10.6 ± 8.7 years (range: 0–39 years. SBTs were diagnosed during the interview.Results: SBTs occurred at some point in the lifetime of 20.7% of patients. The presence of SBTs in adults was four times as frequent as in children (35.5% vs. 9.0% with the most frequent onset in adolescence (58.8% and adulthood (29.4%. These tics started 9.1 ± 4.7 years after the onset of tics. One stimulus and mental stimulus preceded tics most frequently, 44.8 and 33.3%, respectively. There was no established pattern of tics triggered by stimuli. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed significant associations of SBTs with age at evaluation, tic severity, and palilalia but not with any co-morbid psychiatric disorders. 80% of patients showed at least one stimulus-triggered behavior. Premonitory urges and stimulus sensitization were reported by 60.0 and 40.7% of patients, respectively. No significant correlations between SBTs, premonitory urges and stimulus sensitization were found.Conclusion: SBTs are a part of the tic spectrum and should be taken into account by clinicians who deal with GTS patients. These tics fall at the tic end of the continuum of stimulus-induced behaviors.

  17. Stimulus driver for epilepsy seizure suppression with adaptive loading impedance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ker, Ming-Dou; Lin, Chun-Yu; Chen, Wei-Ling

    2011-10-01

    A stimulus driver circuit for a micro-stimulator used in an implantable device is presented in this paper. For epileptic seizure control, the target of the driver was to output 30 µA stimulus currents when the electrode impedance varied between 20 and 200 kΩ. The driver, which consisted of the output stage, control block and adaptor, was integrated in a single chip. The averaged power consumption of the stimulus driver was 0.24-0.56 mW at 800 Hz stimulation rate. Fabricated in a 0.35 µm 3.3 V/24 V CMOS process and applied to a closed-loop epileptic seizure monitoring and controlling system, the proposed design has been successfully verified in the experimental results of Long-Evans rats with epileptic seizures.

  18. Brain bases for auditory stimulus-driven figure-ground segregation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teki, Sundeep; Chait, Maria; Kumar, Sukhbinder; von Kriegstein, Katharina; Griffiths, Timothy D

    2011-01-05

    Auditory figure-ground segregation, listeners' ability to selectively hear out a sound of interest from a background of competing sounds, is a fundamental aspect of scene analysis. In contrast to the disordered acoustic environment we experience during everyday listening, most studies of auditory segregation have used relatively simple, temporally regular signals. We developed a new figure-ground stimulus that incorporates stochastic variation of the figure and background that captures the rich spectrotemporal complexity of natural acoustic scenes. Figure and background signals overlap in spectrotemporal space, but vary in the statistics of fluctuation, such that the only way to extract the figure is by integrating the patterns over time and frequency. Our behavioral results demonstrate that human listeners are remarkably sensitive to the appearance of such figures. In a functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment, aimed at investigating preattentive, stimulus-driven, auditory segregation mechanisms, naive subjects listened to these stimuli while performing an irrelevant task. Results demonstrate significant activations in the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) and the superior temporal sulcus related to bottom-up, stimulus-driven figure-ground decomposition. We did not observe any significant activation in the primary auditory cortex. Our results support a role for automatic, bottom-up mechanisms in the IPS in mediating stimulus-driven, auditory figure-ground segregation, which is consistent with accumulating evidence implicating the IPS in structuring sensory input and perceptual organization.

  19. Reduced autobiographical memory specificity is associated with impaired discrimination learning in anxiety disorder patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenaert, Bert; Boddez, Yannick; Vervliet, Bram; Schruers, Koen; Hermans, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Associative learning plays an important role in the development of anxiety disorders, but a thorough understanding of the variables that impact such learning is still lacking. We investigated whether individual differences in autobiographical memory specificity are related to discrimination learning and generalization. In an associative learning task, participants learned the association between two pictures of female faces and a non-aversive outcome. Subsequently, six morphed pictures functioning as generalization stimuli (GSs) were introduced. In a sample of healthy participants (Study 1), we did not find evidence for differences in discrimination learning as a function of memory specificity. In a sample of anxiety disorder patients (Study 2), individuals who were characterized by low memory specificity showed deficient discrimination learning relative to high specific individuals. In contrast to previous findings, results revealed no effect of memory specificity on generalization. These results indicate that impaired discrimination learning, previously shown in patients suffering from an anxiety disorder, may be—in part—due to limited memory specificity. Together, these studies emphasize the importance of incorporating cognitive variables in associative learning theories and their implications for the development of anxiety disorders. In addition, re-analyses of the data (Study 3) showed that patients suffering from panic disorder showed higher outcome expectancies in the presence of the stimulus that was never followed by an outcome during discrimination training, relative to patients suffering from other anxiety disorders and healthy participants. Because we used a neutral, non-aversive outcome (i.e., drawing of a lightning bolt), these data suggest that learning abnormalities in panic disorder may not be restricted to fear learning, but rather reflect a more general associative learning deficit that also manifests in fear irrelevant contexts. PMID

  20. Stimulus uncertainty enhances long-term potentiation-like plasticity in human motor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sale, Martin V; Nydam, Abbey S; Mattingley, Jason B

    2017-03-01

    Plasticity can be induced in human cortex using paired associative stimulation (PAS), which repeatedly and predictably pairs a peripheral electrical stimulus with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to the contralateral motor region. Many studies have reported small or inconsistent effects of PAS. Given that uncertain stimuli can promote learning, the predictable nature of the stimulation in conventional PAS paradigms might serve to attenuate plasticity induction. Here, we introduced stimulus uncertainty into the PAS paradigm to investigate if it can boost plasticity induction. Across two experimental sessions, participants (n = 28) received a modified PAS paradigm consisting of a random combination of 90 paired stimuli and 90 unpaired (TMS-only) stimuli. Prior to each of these stimuli, participants also received an auditory cue which either reliably predicted whether the upcoming stimulus was paired or unpaired (no uncertainty condition) or did not predict the upcoming stimulus (maximum uncertainty condition). Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) evoked from abductor pollicis brevis (APB) muscle quantified cortical excitability before and after PAS. MEP amplitude increased significantly 15 min following PAS in the maximum uncertainty condition. There was no reliable change in MEP amplitude in the no uncertainty condition, nor between post-PAS MEP amplitudes across the two conditions. These results suggest that stimulus uncertainty may provide a novel means to enhance plasticity induction with the PAS paradigm in human motor cortex. To provide further support to the notion that stimulus uncertainty and prediction error promote plasticity, future studies should further explore the time course of these changes, and investigate what aspects of stimulus uncertainty are critical in boosting plasticity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Deletion of the forebrain mineralocorticoid receptor impairs social discrimination and decision-making in male, but not in female mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith P Ter Horst

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Social interaction with unknown individuals requires fast processing of information to decide whether it is friend or foe. This process of discrimination and decision-making is stressful and triggers secretion of corticosterone activating mineralocorticoid receptors (MR and glucocorticoid receptors (GR. The MR is involved in appraisal of novel experiences and risk assessment. Recently, we have demonstrated in a dual-solution memory task that MR plays a role in the early stage of information processing and decision-making. Here we examined social approach and social discrimination in male and female mice lacking MR from hippocampal-amygdala-prefrontal circuitry and controls. The social approach task allows the assessment of time spent with an unfamiliar mouse and the ability to discriminate between familiar and unfamiliar conspecifics. The male and female test mice were both more interested in the social than the non-social experience and deletion of their limbic MR increased the time spent with an unfamiliar mouse. Unlike controls, the male MRCaMKCre mice were not able to discriminate between an unfamiliar and the familiar mouse. However, the female MR mutant had retained the discriminative ability between unfamiliar and familiar mice. Administration of the MR antagonist RU28318 to male mice supported the role of the MR in the discrimination between an unfamiliar mouse and a non-social stimulus. No effect was found with a GR antagonist. Our findings suggest that MR is involved in sociability and social discrimination in a sex-specific manner through inhibitory control exerted putatively via limbic-hippocampal efferents. The ability to discriminate between familiar and unfamiliar conspecifics is of uttermost importance for territorial defense and depends on a role of MR in decision-making.

  2. Glucocorticoids mediate stress-induced impairment of retrieval of stimulus-response memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atsak, Piray; Guenzel, Friederike M; Kantar-Gok, Deniz; Zalachoras, Ioannis; Yargicoglu, Piraye; Meijer, Onno C; Quirarte, Gina L; Wolf, Oliver T; Schwabe, Lars; Roozendaal, Benno

    2016-05-01

    Acute stress and elevated glucocorticoid hormone levels are well known to impair the retrieval of hippocampus-dependent 'declarative' memory. Recent findings suggest that stress might also impair the retrieval of non-hippocampal memories. In particular, stress shortly before retention testing was shown to impair the retrieval of striatal stimulus-response associations in humans. However, the mechanism underlying this stress-induced retrieval impairment of non-hippocampal stimulus-response memory remains elusive. In the present study, we investigated whether an acute elevation in glucocorticoid levels mediates the impairing effects of stress on retrieval of stimulus-response memory. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained on a stimulus-response task in an eight-arm radial maze until they learned to associate a stimulus, i.e., cue, with a food reward in one of the arms. Twenty-four hours after successful acquisition, they received a systemic injection of vehicle, corticosterone (1mg/kg), the corticosterone-synthesis inhibitor metyrapone (35mg/kg) or were left untreated 1h before retention testing. We found that the corticosterone injection impaired the retrieval of stimulus-response memory. We further found that the systemic injection procedure per se was stressful as the vehicle administration also increased plasma corticosterone levels and impaired the retrieval of stimulus-response memory. However, memory retrieval was not impaired when rats were tested 2min after the systemic vehicle injection, before any stress-induced elevation in corticosterone levels had occurred. Moreover, metyrapone treatment blocked the effect of injection stress on both plasma corticosterone levels and memory retrieval impairment, indicating that the endogenous corticosterone response mediates the stress-induced memory retrieval impairment. None of the treatments affected rats' locomotor activity or motivation to search for the food reward within the maze. These findings show that stress

  3. Priming makes a stimulus more salient

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Theeuwes, J.; van der Burg, E.

    2013-01-01

    The present study used visual prior entry to determine which of two stimuli received attention first. Observers were asked to judge whether two test stimuli across a range of stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) were synchronized or not (simultaneity judgment task; SJ), or to report the temporal order

  4. Stimulus conflict triggers behavioral avoidance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dignath, David; Eder, Andreas B

    2015-12-01

    According to a recent extension of the conflict-monitoring theory, conflict between two competing response tendencies is registered as an aversive event and triggers a motivation to avoid the source of conflict. In the present study, we tested this assumption. Over five experiments, we examined whether conflict is associated with an avoidance motivation and whether stimulus conflict or response conflict triggers an avoidance tendency. Participants first performed a color Stroop task. In a subsequent motivation test, participants responded to Stroop stimuli with approach- and avoidance-related lever movements. These results showed that Stroop-conflict stimuli increased the frequency of avoidance responses in a free-choice motivation test, and also increased the speed of avoidance relative to approach responses in a forced-choice test. High and low proportions of response conflict in the Stroop task had no effect on avoidance in the motivation test. Avoidance of conflict was, however, obtained even with new conflict stimuli that had not been presented before in a Stroop task, and when the Stroop task was replaced with an unrelated filler task. Taken together, these results suggest that stimulus conflict is sufficient to trigger avoidance.

  5. Approach-Avoidance Training Effects Are Moderated by Awareness of Stimulus-Action Contingencies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dessel, Pieter; De Houwer, Jan; Gast, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Prior research suggests that repeatedly approaching or avoiding a stimulus changes the liking of that stimulus. In two experiments, we investigated the relationship between, on one hand, effects of approach-avoidance (AA) training on implicit and explicit evaluations of novel faces and, on the other hand, contingency awareness as indexed by participants' memory for the relation between stimulus and action. We observed stronger effects for faces that were classified as contingency aware and found no evidence that AA training caused changes in stimulus evaluations in the absence of contingency awareness. These findings challenge the standard view that AA training effects are (exclusively) the product of implicit learning processes, such as the automatic formation of associations in memory. © 2015 by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Inc.

  6. Comparison of color discrimination in chronic heavy smokers and healthy subjects [version 3; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago Monteiro de Paiva Fernandes

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cigarette smoke is probably the most significant source of exposure to toxic chemicals for humans, involving health-damaging components, such as nicotine, hydrogen cyanide and formaldehyde. The aim of the present study was to assess the influence of chronic heavy smoking on color discrimination (CD. Methods: All subjects were free of any neuropsychiatric disorder, identifiable ocular disease and had normal acuity. No abnormalities were detected in the fundoscopic examination and in the optical coherence tomography exam. We assessed color vision for healthy heavy smokers (n = 15; age range, 20-45 years, deprived smokers (n = 15, age range 20-45 years and healthy non-smokers (n = 15; age range, 20-45 years, using the psychophysical forced-choice method. All groups were matched for gender and education level. In this test, the volunteers had to choose the pseudoisochromatic stimulus containing a test frequency at four directions (e.g., up, down, right and left in the subtest of Cambridge Colour Test (CCT: Trivector. Results: Performance on CCT differed between groups, and the observed pattern was that smokers had lower discrimination compared to non-smokers. In addition, deprived smokers presented lower discrimination to smokers and non-smokers. Contrary to expectation, the largest differences were observed for medium and long wavelengths. Conclusions: These results suggests that cigarette smoking, chronic exposure to its compounds, and withdrawal from nicotine affect color discrimination. This highlights the importance of understanding the diverse effects of nicotine on attentional bias.

  7. Songbirds and humans apply different strategies in a sound sequence discrimination task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshimasa eSeki

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The abilities of animals and humans to extract rules from sound sequences have previously been compared using observation of spontaneous responses and conditioning techniques. However, the results were inconsistently interpreted across studies possibly due to methodological and/or species differences. Therefore, we examined the strategies for discrimination of sound sequences in Bengalese finches and humans using the same protocol. Birds were trained on a GO/NOGO task to discriminate between two categories of sound stimulus generated based on an AAB or ABB rule. The sound elements used were taken from a variety of male (M and female (F calls, such that the sequences could be represented as MMF and MFF. In test sessions, FFM and FMM sequences, which were never presented in the training sessions but conformed to the rule, were presented as probe stimuli. The results suggested two discriminative strategies were being applied: 1 memorizing sound patterns of either GO or NOGO stimuli and generating the appropriate responses for only those sounds; and 2 using the repeated element as a cue. There was no evidence that the birds successfully extracted the abstract rule (i.e. AAB and ABB; MMF-GO subjects did not produce a GO response for FFM and vice versa. Next we examined whether those strategies were also applicable for human participants on the same task. The results and questionnaires revealed that participants extracted the abstract rule, and most of them employed it to discriminate the sequences. This strategy was never observed in bird subjects, although some participants used strategies similar to the birds when responding to the probe stimuli. Our results showed that the human participants applied the abstract rule in the task even without instruction but Bengalese finches did not, thereby reconfirming that humans have to extract abstract rules from sound sequences that is distinct from non-human animals.

  8. Songbirds and humans apply different strategies in a sound sequence discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seki, Yoshimasa; Suzuki, Kenta; Osawa, Ayumi M; Okanoya, Kazuo

    2013-01-01

    The abilities of animals and humans to extract rules from sound sequences have previously been compared using observation of spontaneous responses and conditioning techniques. However, the results were inconsistently interpreted across studies possibly due to methodological and/or species differences. Therefore, we examined the strategies for discrimination of sound sequences in Bengalese finches and humans using the same protocol. Birds were trained on a GO/NOGO task to discriminate between two categories of sound stimulus generated based on an "AAB" or "ABB" rule. The sound elements used were taken from a variety of male (M) and female (F) calls, such that the sequences could be represented as MMF and MFF. In test sessions, FFM and FMM sequences, which were never presented in the training sessions but conformed to the rule, were presented as probe stimuli. The results suggested two discriminative strategies were being applied: (1) memorizing sound patterns of either GO or NOGO stimuli and generating the appropriate responses for only those sounds; and (2) using the repeated element as a cue. There was no evidence that the birds successfully extracted the abstract rule (i.e., AAB and ABB); MMF-GO subjects did not produce a GO response for FFM and vice versa. Next we examined whether those strategies were also applicable for human participants on the same task. The results and questionnaires revealed that participants extracted the abstract rule, and most of them employed it to discriminate the sequences. This strategy was never observed in bird subjects, although some participants used strategies similar to the birds when responding to the probe stimuli. Our results showed that the human participants applied the abstract rule in the task even without instruction but Bengalese finches did not, thereby reconfirming that humans have to extract abstract rules from sound sequences that is distinct from non-human animals.

  9. Stimulus-response correspondence effect as a function of temporal overlap between relevant and irrelevant information processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dong-Yuan Debbie; Richard, F Dan; Ray, Brittany

    2016-01-01

    The stimulus-response correspondence (SRC) effect refers to advantages in performance when stimulus and response correspond in dimensions or features, even if the common features are irrelevant to the task. Previous research indicated that the SRC effect depends on the temporal course of stimulus information processing. The current study investigated how the temporal overlap between relevant and irrelevant stimulus processing influences the SRC effect. In this experiment, the irrelevant stimulus (a previously associated tone) preceded the relevant stimulus (a coloured rectangle). The irrelevant and relevant stimuli onset asynchrony was varied to manipulate the temporal overlap between the irrelevant and relevant stimuli processing. Results indicated that the SRC effect size varied as a quadratic function of the temporal overlap between the relevant stimulus and irrelevant stimulus. This finding extends previous experimental observations that the SRC effect size varies in an increasing or decreasing function with reaction time. The current study demonstrated a quadratic function between effect size and the temporal overlap.

  10. Variables Influencing Stimulus Overselectivity and "Tunnel Vision" in Developmentally Delayed Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rincover, Arnold; Ducharme, Joseph M.

    1987-01-01

    Three variables (diagnosis, location of cues, and mental age of learners) influencing stimulus control and stimulus overselectivity were assessed with eight autistic children (mean age 12 years) and eight average children matched for mean age. Among results were that autistic subjects tended to respond overselectively only in the extra-stimulus…

  11. Comparing different stimulus configurations for population receptive field mapping in human fMRI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan eAlvarez

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Population receptive field (pRF mapping is a widely used approach to measuring aggregate human visual receptive field properties by recording non-invasive signals using functional MRI. Despite growing interest, no study to date has systematically investigated the effects of different stimulus configurations on pRF estimates from human visual cortex. Here we compared the effects of three different stimulus configurations on a model-based approach to pRF estimation: size-invariant bars and eccentricity-scaled bars defined in Cartesian coordinates and traveling along the cardinal axes, and a novel simultaneous ‘wedge and ring’ stimulus defined in polar coordinates, systematically covering polar and eccentricity axes. We found that the presence or absence of eccentricity scaling had a significant effect on goodness of fit and pRF size estimates. Further, variability in pRF size estimates was directly influenced by stimulus configuration, particularly for higher visual areas including V5/MT+. Finally, we compared eccentricity estimation between phase-encoded and model-based pRF approaches. We observed a tendency for more peripheral eccentricity estimates using phase-encoded methods, independent of stimulus size. We conclude that both eccentricity scaling and polar rather than Cartesian stimulus configuration are important considerations for optimal experimental design in pRF mapping. While all stimulus configurations produce adequate estimates, simultaneous wedge and ring stimulation produced higher fit reliability, with a significant advantage in reduced acquisition time.

  12. Stimulus-driven capture and contingent capture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Theeuwes, J.; Olivers, C.N.L.; Belopolsky, A.V.

    2010-01-01

    Whether or not certain physical events can capture attention has been one of the most debated issues in the study of attention. This discussion is concerned with how goal-directed and stimulus-driven processes interact in perception and cognition. On one extreme of the spectrum is the idea that

  13. Anticipation increases tactile stimulus processing in the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ede, Freek; de Lange, Floris P; Maris, Eric

    2014-10-01

    Stimulus anticipation improves perception. To account for this improvement, we investigated how stimulus processing is altered by anticipation. In contrast to a large body of previous work, we employed a demanding perceptual task and investigated sensory responses that occur beyond early evoked activity in contralateral primary sensory areas: Stimulus-induced modulations of neural oscillations. For this, we recorded magnetoencephalography in 19 humans while they performed a cued tactile identification task involving the identification of either a proximal or a distal stimulation on the fingertips. We varied the cue-target interval between 0 and 1000 ms such that tactile targets occurred at various degrees of anticipation. This allowed us to investigate the influence of anticipation on stimulus processing in a parametric fashion. We observed that anticipation increases the stimulus-induced response (suppression of beta-band oscillations) originating from the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex. This occurs in the period in which the tactile memory trace is analyzed and is correlated with the anticipation-induced improvement in tactile perception. We propose that this ipsilateral response indicates distributed processing across bilateral primary sensory cortices, of which the extent increases with anticipation. This constitutes a new and potentially important mechanism contributing to perception and its improvement following anticipation. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  14. Decoupling Stimulus Duration from Brightness in Metacontrast Masking: Data and Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Lollo, Vincent; Muhlenen, Adrian von; Enns, James T.; Bridgeman, Bruce

    2004-01-01

    A brief target that is visible when displayed alone can be rendered invisible by a trailing stimulus (metacontrast masking). It has been difficult to determine the temporal dynamics of masking to date because increments in stimulus duration have been invariably confounded with apparent brightness (Bloch's law). In the research reported here,…

  15. Pulse duration discriminator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kosakovskij, L.F.

    1980-01-01

    Basic circuits of a discriminator for discrimination of pulses with the duration greater than the preset one, and of a multifunctional discriminator allowing to discriminate pulses with the duration greater (tsub(p)>tsub(s)) and lesser (tsub(p) tsub(s) and with the duration tsub(p) [ru

  16. Differences in the Stimulus Accommodative Convergence/Accommodation Ratio using Various Techniques and Accommodative Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satou, Tsukasa; Ito, Misae; Shinomiya, Yuma; Takahashi, Yoshiaki; Hara, Naoto; Niida, Takahiro

    2018-04-04

    To investigate differences in the stimulus accommodative convergence/accommodation (AC/A) ratio using various techniques and accommodative stimuli, and to describe a method for determining the stimulus AC/A ratio. A total of 81 subjects with a mean age of 21 years (range, 20-23 years) were enrolled. The relationship between ocular deviation and accommodation was assessed using two methods. Ocular deviation was measured by varying the accommodative requirement using spherical plus/minus lenses to create an accommodative stimulus of 10.00 diopters (D) (in 1.00 D steps). Ocular deviation was assessed using the alternate prism cover test in method 1 at distance (5 m) and near (1/3 m), and the major amblyoscope in method 2. The stimulus AC/A ratios obtained using methods 1 and 2 were calculated and defined as the stimulus AC/A ratios with low and high accommodation, respectively, using the following analysis method. The former was calculated as the difference between the convergence response to an accommodative stimulus of 3 D and 0 D, divided by 3. The latter was calculated as the difference between the convergence response to a maximum (max) accommodative stimulus with distinct vision of the subject and an accommodative stimulus of max minus 3.00 D, divided by 3. The median stimulus AC/A ratio with low accommodation (1.0 Δ/D for method 1 at distance, 2.0 Δ/D for method 1 at near, and 2.7 Δ/D for method 2) differed significantly among the measurement methods (P accommodation (4.0 Δ/D for method 1 at distance, 3.7 Δ/D for method 1 at near, and 4.7 Δ/D for method 2) between method 1 at distance and method 2 were statistically significant (P accommodative stimuli. However, differences caused by measurement technique may be reduced by using a high accommodative stimulus during measurements.

  17. Stimulus specificity of a steady-state visual-evoked potential-based brain-computer interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Kian B.; Bradley, Andrew P.; Cunnington, Ross

    2012-06-01

    The mechanisms of neural excitation and inhibition when given a visual stimulus are well studied. It has been established that changing stimulus specificity such as luminance contrast or spatial frequency can alter the neuronal activity and thus modulate the visual-evoked response. In this paper, we study the effect that stimulus specificity has on the classification performance of a steady-state visual-evoked potential-based brain-computer interface (SSVEP-BCI). For example, we investigate how closely two visual stimuli can be placed before they compete for neural representation in the cortex and thus influence BCI classification accuracy. We characterize stimulus specificity using the four stimulus parameters commonly encountered in SSVEP-BCI design: temporal frequency, spatial size, number of simultaneously displayed stimuli and their spatial proximity. By varying these quantities and measuring the SSVEP-BCI classification accuracy, we are able to determine the parameters that provide optimal performance. Our results show that superior SSVEP-BCI accuracy is attained when stimuli are placed spatially more than 5° apart, with size that subtends at least 2° of visual angle, when using a tagging frequency of between high alpha and beta band. These findings may assist in deciding the stimulus parameters for optimal SSVEP-BCI design.

  18. Dynamic integration of reward and stimulus information in perceptual decision-making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Juan; Tortell, Rebecca; McClelland, James L

    2011-03-03

    In perceptual decision-making, ideal decision-makers should bias their choices toward alternatives associated with larger rewards, and the extent of the bias should decrease as stimulus sensitivity increases. When responses must be made at different times after stimulus onset, stimulus sensitivity grows with time from zero to a final asymptotic level. Are decision makers able to produce responses that are more biased if they are made soon after stimulus onset, but less biased if they are made after more evidence has been accumulated? If so, how close to optimal can they come in doing this, and how might their performance be achieved mechanistically? We report an experiment in which the payoff for each alternative is indicated before stimulus onset. Processing time is controlled by a "go" cue occurring at different times post stimulus onset, requiring a response within msec. Reward bias does start high when processing time is short and decreases as sensitivity increases, leveling off at a non-zero value. However, the degree of bias is sub-optimal for shorter processing times. We present a mechanistic account of participants' performance within the framework of the leaky competing accumulator model [1], in which accumulators for each alternative accumulate noisy information subject to leakage and mutual inhibition. The leveling off of accuracy is attributed to mutual inhibition between the accumulators, allowing the accumulator that gathers the most evidence early in a trial to suppress the alternative. Three ways reward might affect decision making in this framework are considered. One of the three, in which reward affects the starting point of the evidence accumulation process, is consistent with the qualitative pattern of the observed reward bias effect, while the other two are not. Incorporating this assumption into the leaky competing accumulator model, we are able to provide close quantitative fits to individual participant data.

  19. Stimulus fear-relevance and the vicarious learning pathway to childhood fears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askew, Chris; Dunne, Güler; Özdil, Zehra; Reynolds, Gemma; Field, Andy P

    2013-10-01

    Enhanced fear learning for fear-relevant stimuli has been demonstrated in procedures with adults in the laboratory. Three experiments investigated the effect of stimulus fear-relevance on vicarious fear learning in children (aged 6-11 years). Pictures of stimuli with different levels of fear-relevance (flowers, caterpillars, snakes, worms, and Australian marsupials) were presented alone or together with scared faces. In line with previous studies, children's fear beliefs and avoidance preferences increased for stimuli they had seen with scared faces. However, in contrast to evidence with adults, learning was mostly similar for all stimulus types irrespective of fear-relevance. The results support a proposal that stimulus preparedness is bypassed when children observationally learn threat-related information from adults.

  20. The Poverty of the Mayan Stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pye, Clifton

    2012-01-01

    Poverty of the stimulus (POS) arguments have instigated considerable debate in the recent linguistics literature. This article uses the comparative method to challenge the logic of POS arguments. Rather than question the premises of POS arguments, the article demonstrates how POS arguments for individual languages lead to a "reductio ad absurdum"…

  1. Electrotactile stimulation on the tongue: intensity perception, discrimination and cross-modality estimation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozano, Cecil A.; Kaczmarek, Kurt A.; Santello, Marco

    2010-01-01

    Due to its high sensitivity and conductivity, electrotactile stimulation (ETS) on the tongue has proven to be a useful and technically convenient tool to substitute and/or augment sensory capabilities. However, most of its applications have only provided spatial attributes and little is known about (a) the ability of the tongue's sensory system to process electrical stimuli of varying magnitudes and (b) how modulation of ETS intensity affects subjects' ability to decode stimulus intensity. We addressed these questions by quantifying: (1) the magnitude of the dynamic range (DR; maximal comfortable intensity/perception threshold) and its sensitivity to prolonged exposure; (2) subjects' ability to perceive intensity changes; and (3) subjects' ability to associate intensity with angular excursions of a protractor's handle. We found that the average DR (17 dB) was generally large in comparison with other tactile loci and of a relatively constant magnitude among subjects, even after prolonged exposure, despite a slight but significant upward drift (P intensity increased, subjects' ability to discriminate ETS stimuli of different intensities improved (P intensity may increase recruitment of rapidly adapting mechanoreceptor fibers, as these are specialized for coding stimulus differences rather than absolute intensities. Furthermore, our study revealed that the tongue's sensory system can effectively convey electrical stimuli despite minimal practice and when information transfer is limited by memory and DR drift. PMID:19697262

  2. Stimulus-response mappings shape inhibition processes: a combined EEG-fMRI study of contextual stopping.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina F Lavallee

    Full Text Available Humans are rarely faced with one simple task, but are typically confronted with complex stimulus constellations and varying stimulus-relevance in a given situation. Through modifying the prototypical stop-signal task and by combined recording and analysis of electroencephalography (EEG and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, we studied the effects of stimulus relevance for the generation of a response or its inhibition. Stimulus response mappings were modified by contextual cues, indicating which of two different stimuli following a go stimulus was relevant for stopping. Overall, response inhibition, that is comparing successful stopping to a stop-signal against go-signal related processes, was associated with increased activity in right inferior and left midfrontal regions, as well as increased EEG delta and theta power; however, stimulus-response conditions in which the most infrequent stop-signal was relevant for inhibition, were associated with decreased activity in regions typically involved in response inhibition, as well as decreased activity in the delta and theta bands as compared to conditions wherein the relevant stop-signal frequency was higher. Behaviorally, this (aforementioned condition, which demanded inhibition only from the most infrequent stimulus, was also associated with reduced reaction times and lower error rates. This pattern of results does not align with typical stimulus frequency-driven findings and suggests interplay between task relevance and stimulus frequency of the stop-signal. Moreover, with a multimodal EEG-fMRI analysis, we demonstrated significant parameterization for response inhibition with delta, theta and beta time-frequency values, which may be interpreted as reflecting conflict monitoring, evaluative and/or motor processes as suggested by previous work (Huster et al., 2013; Aron, 2011. Further multimodal results suggest a possible neurophysiological and behavioral benefit under conditions

  3. The perception of regularity in an isochronous stimulus in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Aa, Jeroen; Honing, Henkjan; ten Cate, Carel

    2015-06-01

    Perceiving temporal regularity in an auditory stimulus is considered one of the basic features of musicality. Here we examine whether zebra finches can detect regularity in an isochronous stimulus. Using a go/no go paradigm we show that zebra finches are able to distinguish between an isochronous and an irregular stimulus. However, when the tempo of the isochronous stimulus is changed, it is no longer treated as similar to the training stimulus. Training with three isochronous and three irregular stimuli did not result in improvement of the generalization. In contrast, humans, exposed to the same stimuli, readily generalized across tempo changes. Our results suggest that zebra finches distinguish the different stimuli by learning specific local temporal features of each individual stimulus rather than attending to the global structure of the stimuli, i.e., to the temporal regularity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Left occipitotemporal cortex contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions: fMRI and TMS evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesca ePerini

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Functional neuroimaging studies have implicated the left lateral occipitotemporal cortex (LOTC in both tool and hand perception but the functional role of this region is not fully known. Here, by using a task manipulation, we tested whether tool-/hand-selective LOTC contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions. Participants viewed briefly presented pictures of kitchen and garage tools while they performed one of two tasks: in the action task, they judged whether the tool is associated with a hand rotation action (e.g., screwdriver or a hand squeeze action (e.g., garlic press, while in the location task they judged whether the tool is typically found in the kitchen (e.g., garlic press or in the garage (e.g., screwdriver. Both tasks were performed on the same stimulus set and were matched for difficulty. Contrasting fMRI responses between these tasks showed stronger activity during the action task than the location task in both tool- and hand-selective LOTC regions, which closely overlapped. No differences were found in nearby object- and motion-selective control regions. Importantly, these findings were confirmed by a TMS study, which showed that effective TMS over the tool-/hand-selective LOTC region significantly slowed responses for tool action discriminations relative to tool location discriminations, with no such difference during sham TMS. We conclude that left LOTC contributes to the discrimination of tool-associated hand actions.

  5. Measuring consciousness: Task accuracy and awareness as sigmoid functions of stimulus duration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sandberg, Kristian; Bibby, Bo Martin; Timmermans, B

    2011-01-01

    certain limitations. In the present article, we propose describing task accuracy and awareness as functions of stimulus intensity (thus obtaining an accuracy and an awareness curve) as suggested by Koch and Preuschoff (2007). The estimated lag between the curves describes how much stimulus intensity must...

  6. Sensation within the skin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troisi, Joseph R

    2015-02-18

    This Viewpoint emphasizes interoceptive discriminative stimulus modulation of voluntary operant behavior (a la B. F. Skinner), rather than elicitation of Pavlovian conditioned reflexes. In doing so, I will restate how the operant drug discrimination paradigm may not only elucidate smoking and other addictive behaviors but also anxiety (Troisi, J. R., II. (2003) Spontaneous recovery during, but not following, extinction of the discriminative stimulus effects of nicotine in rats: Reinstatement of stimulus control. Psychol. Rec. 53, 579-592).

  7. Effects of age, gender, and stimulus presentation period on visual short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunimi, Mitsunobu

    2016-01-01

    This study focused on age-related changes in visual short-term memory using visual stimuli that did not allow verbal encoding. Experiment 1 examined the effects of age and the length of the stimulus presentation period on visual short-term memory function. Experiment 2 examined the effects of age, gender, and the length of the stimulus presentation period on visual short-term memory function. The worst memory performance and the largest performance difference between the age groups were observed in the shortest stimulus presentation period conditions. The performance difference between the age groups became smaller as the stimulus presentation period became longer; however, it did not completely disappear. Although gender did not have a significant effect on d' regardless of the presentation period in the young group, a significant gender-based difference was observed for stimulus presentation periods of 500 ms and 1,000 ms in the older group. This study indicates that the decline in visual short-term memory observed in the older group is due to the interaction of several factors.

  8. Acoustic mechanisms of a species-based discrimination of the chick-a-dee call in sympatric black-capped (Poecile atricapillus and mountain chickadees (P. gambeli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren M Guillette

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Previous perceptual research with black-capped and mountain chickadees has demonstrated that these species treat each other’s namesake chick-a-dee calls as belonging to separate, open-ended categories. Further, the terminal dee portion of the call has been implicated as the most prominent species marker. However, statistical classification using acoustic summary features suggests that all note-types contained within the chick-a-dee call should be sufficient for species classification. The current study seeks to better understand the note-type based mechanisms underlying species-based classification of the chick-a-dee call by black-capped and mountain chickadees. In two, complimentary, operant discrimination experiments, both species were trained to discriminate the species of the signaller using either entire chick-a-dee calls, or individual note-types from chick-a-dee calls. In agreement with previous perceptual work we find that the D note had significant stimulus control over species based discrimination. However, in line with statistical classifications, we find that all note-types carry species information. We discuss reasons why the most easily discriminated note-types are likely candidates to carry species based cues.

  9. One for all: The effect of extinction stimulus typicality on return of fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheveneels, Sara; Boddez, Yannick; Bennett, Marc Patrick; Hermans, Dirk

    2017-12-01

    During exposure therapy, patients are encouraged to approach the feared stimulus, so they can experience that this stimulus is not followed by the anticipated aversive outcome. However, patients might treat the absence of the aversive outcome as an 'exception to the rule'. This could hamper the generalization of fear reduction when the patient is confronted with similar stimuli not used in therapy. We examined the effect of providing information about the typicality of the extinction stimulus on the generalization of extinction to a new but similar stimulus. In a differential fear conditioning procedure, an animal-like figure was paired with a brief electric shock to the wrist. In a subsequent extinction phase, a different but perceptually similar animal-like figure was presented without the shock. Before testing the generalization of extinction with a third animal-like figure, participants were either instructed that the extinction stimulus was a typical or an atypical member of the animal family. The typicality instruction effectively impacted the generalization of extinction; the third animal-like figure elicited lower shock expectancies in the typical relative to the atypical group. Skin conductance data mirrored these results, but did not reach significance. These findings suggest that verbal information about stimulus typicality can be a promising adjunctive to standard exposure treatments. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Quantifying explainable discrimination and removing illegal discrimination in automated decision making

    KAUST Repository

    Kamiran, Faisal

    2012-11-18

    Recently, the following discrimination-aware classification problem was introduced. Historical data used for supervised learning may contain discrimination, for instance, with respect to gender. The question addressed by discrimination-aware techniques is, given sensitive attribute, how to train discrimination-free classifiers on such historical data that are discriminative, with respect to the given sensitive attribute. Existing techniques that deal with this problem aim at removing all discrimination and do not take into account that part of the discrimination may be explainable by other attributes. For example, in a job application, the education level of a job candidate could be such an explainable attribute. If the data contain many highly educated male candidates and only few highly educated women, a difference in acceptance rates between woman and man does not necessarily reflect gender discrimination, as it could be explained by the different levels of education. Even though selecting on education level would result in more males being accepted, a difference with respect to such a criterion would not be considered to be undesirable, nor illegal. Current state-of-the-art techniques, however, do not take such gender-neutral explanations into account and tend to overreact and actually start reverse discriminating, as we will show in this paper. Therefore, we introduce and analyze the refined notion of conditional non-discrimination in classifier design. We show that some of the differences in decisions across the sensitive groups can be explainable and are hence tolerable. Therefore, we develop methodology for quantifying the explainable discrimination and algorithmic techniques for removing the illegal discrimination when one or more attributes are considered as explanatory. Experimental evaluation on synthetic and real-world classification datasets demonstrates that the new techniques are superior to the old ones in this new context, as they succeed in

  11. Perceived Discrimination in LGBTIQ Discourse: A Typology of Verbal Discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sol Rojas Lizana

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available New within the field of Discourse Analysis, Perceived Discrimination (PD is the study of discourse that focuses on the perspective of the victims of discrimination. This article explores the experiences of verbal discrimination as reported by eighteen LGBTIQ participants during semi-structured, co-constructed interviews. Data were classified in order to develop a taxonomy of discrimination based on Mellor’s (2003, 2004. This taxonomy foregrounds two types of discrimination: verbal and behavioural. In this paper, I exemplify the forms of verbal discrimination encountered and offer an analysis of the discourse used in the construction of the experiences and of the effects reported. The results show that verbal discrimination is an overt phenomenon and that participants are stressed by the ever present possibility of facing it. Verbal discrimination is mainly triggered by a perceived transgression to the normalised standards of people’s behaviour, movements and look in a heterosexist society. It presents three subtypes: name calling, abuse and remarks. These subtypes are described through the analysis of keywords, effects and expressions (such as faggot, gay, dyke, queer, the pronoun ‘it’, religious comments and other remarks. The type of discrimination used was associated with the level of acquaintance perpetrators have with the experiencers; that is, name calling was used by people unknown to the victims while abuse and remarks by acquaintances and family members. Participants resorted to several discursive strategies to convey their intentions. They used mitigation strategies when wanting to minimize the experience, hedging and repetition were used for emphasis, and to convey urgency and pervasiveness. Metaphorical expressions related to internal or external injuries were also used to express the powerful effect of verbal discrimination on people.

  12. Modeling T cell antigen discrimination based on feedback control of digital ERK responses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2005-11-01

    Full Text Available T-lymphocyte activation displays a remarkable combination of speed, sensitivity, and discrimination in response to peptide-major histocompatibility complex (pMHC ligand engagement of clonally distributed antigen receptors (T cell receptors or TCRs. Even a few foreign pMHCs on the surface of an antigen-presenting cell trigger effective signaling within seconds, whereas 1 x 10(5-1 x 10(6 self-pMHC ligands that may differ from the foreign stimulus by only a single amino acid fail to elicit this response. No existing model accounts for this nearly absolute distinction between closely related TCR ligands while also preserving the other canonical features of T-cell responses. Here we document the unexpected highly amplified and digital nature of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK activation in T cells. Based on this observation and evidence that competing positive- and negative-feedback loops contribute to TCR ligand discrimination, we constructed a new mathematical model of proximal TCR-dependent signaling. The model made clear that competition between a digital positive feedback based on ERK activity and an analog negative feedback involving SH2 domain-containing tyrosine phosphatase (SHP-1 was critical for defining a sharp ligand-discrimination threshold while preserving a rapid and sensitive response. Several nontrivial predictions of this model, including the notion that this threshold is highly sensitive to small changes in SHP-1 expression levels during cellular differentiation, were confirmed by experiment. These results combining computation and experiment reveal that ligand discrimination by T cells is controlled by the dynamics of competing feedback loops that regulate a high-gain digital amplifier, which is itself modulated during differentiation by alterations in the intracellular concentrations of key enzymes. The organization of the signaling network that we model here may be a prototypic solution to the problem of achieving

  13. Different responses of spontaneous and stimulus-related alpha activity to ambient luminance changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benedetto, Alessandro; Lozano-Soldevilla, Diego; VanRullen, Rufin

    2017-12-04

    Alpha oscillations are particularly important in determining our percepts and have been implicated in fundamental brain functions. Oscillatory activity can be spontaneous or stimulus-related. Furthermore, stimulus-related responses can be phase- or non-phase-locked to the stimulus. Non-phase-locked (induced) activity can be identified as the average amplitude changes in response to a stimulation, while phase-locked activity can be measured via reverse-correlation techniques (echo function). However, the mechanisms and the functional roles of these oscillations are far from clear. Here, we investigated the effect of ambient luminance changes, known to dramatically modulate neural oscillations, on spontaneous and stimulus-related alpha. We investigated the effect of ambient luminance on EEG alpha during spontaneous human brain activity at rest (experiment 1) and during visual stimulation (experiment 2). Results show that spontaneous alpha amplitude increased by decreasing ambient luminance, while alpha frequency remained unaffected. In the second experiment, we found that under low-luminance viewing, the stimulus-related alpha amplitude was lower, and its frequency was slightly faster. These effects were evident in the phase-locked part of the alpha response (echo function), but weaker or absent in the induced (non-phase-locked) alpha responses. Finally, we explored the possible behavioural correlates of these modulations in a monocular critical flicker frequency task (experiment 3), finding that dark adaptation in the left eye decreased the temporal threshold of the right eye. Overall, we found that ambient luminance changes impact differently on spontaneous and stimulus-related alpha expression. We suggest that stimulus-related alpha activity is crucial in determining human temporal segmentation abilities. © 2017 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Odor Memory and Discrimination Covary as a Function of Delay between Encoding and Recall in Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hackett, Chelsea; Choi, Christina; O'Brien, Brenna; Shin, Philip; Linster, Christiane

    2015-06-01

    Nonassociative odor learning paradigms are often used to assess memory, social recognition and neuromodulation of olfactory pathways. We here use a modified object recognition paradigm to investigate how an important task parameter, delay between encoding and recall trials, affects the properties of this memory. We show that both memory for a previously investigated odorant and discrimination of a novel odorant decay with delay time and that rats can remember an odorant for up to 45min after a single trial encoding event. The number of odorants that can be encoded, as well as the specificity of the encoded memory, decrease with increased delay and also depend on stimulus concentration. Memory for an odorant and discrimination of a novel odorant decay at approximately the same rate, whereas the specificity of the formed memory decays faster than the memory itself. These results have important implications for the interpretation of behavioral data obtained with this paradigm. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. BOLDSync: a MATLAB-based toolbox for synchronized stimulus presentation in functional MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, Jitesh; Saharan, Sumiti; Mandal, Pravat K

    2014-02-15

    Precise and synchronized presentation of paradigm stimuli in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is central to obtaining accurate information about brain regions involved in a specific task. In this manuscript, we present a new MATLAB-based toolbox, BOLDSync, for synchronized stimulus presentation in fMRI. BOLDSync provides a user friendly platform for design and presentation of visual, audio, as well as multimodal audio-visual (AV) stimuli in functional imaging experiments. We present simulation experiments that demonstrate the millisecond synchronization accuracy of BOLDSync, and also illustrate the functionalities of BOLDSync through application to an AV fMRI study. BOLDSync gains an advantage over other available proprietary and open-source toolboxes by offering a user friendly and accessible interface that affords both precision in stimulus presentation and versatility across various types of stimulus designs and system setups. BOLDSync is a reliable, efficient, and versatile solution for synchronized stimulus presentation in fMRI study. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Stimulus Predifferentiation and Modification of Children's Racial Attitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Phyllis A.

    1973-01-01

    The most significant finding is that stimulus-predifferentiation training elicited lower prejudice scores for children on two indices of ethnic attitudes than did a no-label control condition. (Author)

  17. Do humans and nonhuman animals share the grouping principles of the iambic-trochaic law?

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Mora, Daniela M; Nespor, Marina; Toro, Juan M

    2013-01-01

    The iambic-trochaic law describes humans' tendency to form trochaic groups over sequences varying in pitch or intensity (i.e., the loudest or highest sounds mark group beginnings), and iambic groups over sequences varying in duration (i.e., the longest sounds mark group endings). The extent to which these perceptual biases are shared by humans and nonhuman animals is yet unclear. In Experiment 1, we trained rats to discriminate pitch-alternating sequences of tones from sequences randomly varying in pitch. In Experiment 2, rats were trained to discriminate duration-alternating sequences of tones from sequences randomly varying in duration. We found that nonhuman animals group sequences based on pitch variations as trochees, but they do not group sequences varying in duration as iambs. Importantly, humans grouped the same stimuli following the principles of the iambic-trochaic law (Exp. 3). These results suggest the early emergence of the trochaic rhythmic grouping bias based on pitch, possibly relying on perceptual abilities shared by humans and other mammals, whereas the iambic rhythmic grouping bias based on duration might depend on language experience.

  18. Aural, visual, and pictorial stimulus formats in false recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchamp, Heather M

    2002-12-01

    The present investigation is an initial simultaneous examination of the influence of three stimulus formats on false memories. Several pilot tests were conducted to develop new category associate stimulus lists. 73 women and 26 men (M age=21.1 yr.) were in one of three conditions: they either heard words, were shown words, or were shown pictures highly related to critical nonpresented items. As expected, recall of critical nonpresented stimuli was significantly greater for aural lists than for visually presented words and pictorial images. These findings demonstrate that the accuracy of memory is influenced by the format of the information encoded.

  19. Visible Contrast Energy Metrics for Detection and Discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahumada, Albert; Watson, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Contrast energy was proposed by Watson, Robson, & Barlow as a useful metric for representing luminance contrast target stimuli because it represents the detectability of the stimulus in photon noise for an ideal observer. Like the eye, the ear is a complex transducer system, but relatively simple sound level meters are used to characterize sounds. These meters provide a range of frequency sensitivity functions and integration times depending on the intended use. We propose here the use of a range of contrast energy measures with different spatial frequency contrast sensitivity weightings, eccentricity sensitivity weightings, and temporal integration times. When detection threshold are plotting using such measures, the results show what the eye sees best when these variables are taken into account in a standard way. The suggested weighting functions revise the Standard Spatial Observer for luminance contrast detection and extend it into the near periphery. Under the assumption that the detection is limited only by internal noise, discrimination performance can be predicted by metrics based on the visible energy of the difference images

  20. Is conscious stimulus identification dependent on knowledge of the perceptual modality? Testing the "source misidentification hypothesis"

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overgaard, Morten; Lindeløv, Jonas Kristoffer; Svejstrup, Stinna

    2013-01-01

    This paper reports an experiment intended to test a particular hypothesis derived from blindsight research, which we name the “source misidentification hypothesis.” According to this hypothesis, a subject may be correct about a stimulus without being correct about how she had access...... to this knowledge (whether the stimulus was visual, auditory, or something else). We test this hypothesis in healthy subjects, asking them to report whether a masked stimulus was presented auditorily or visually, what the stimulus was, and how clearly they experienced the stimulus using the Perceptual Awareness...... experience of the stimulus. To demonstrate that particular levels of reporting accuracy are obtained, we employ a statistical strategy, which operationally tests the hypothesis of non-equality, such that the usual rejection of the null-hypothesis admits the conclusion of equivalence....

  1. Exploring Discrimination and Mental Health Disparities Faced By Black Sexual Minority Women Using a Minority Stress Framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calabrese, Sarah K; Meyer, Ilan H; Overstreet, Nicole M; Haile, Rahwa; Hansen, Nathan B

    2015-09-01

    Black sexual minority women are triply marginalized due to their race, gender, and sexual orientation. We compared three dimensions of discrimination-frequency (regularity of occurrences), scope (number of types of discriminatory acts experienced), and number of bases (number of social statuses to which discrimination was attributed)-and self-reported mental health (depressive symptoms, psychological well-being, and social well-being) between 64 Black sexual minority women and each of two groups sharing two of three marginalized statuses: (a) 67 White sexual minority women and (b) 67 Black sexual minority men. Black sexual minority women reported greater discrimination frequency, scope, and number of bases and poorer psychological and social well-being than White sexual minority women and more discrimination bases, a higher level of depressive symptoms, and poorer social well-being than Black sexual minority men. We then tested and contrasted dimensions of discrimination as mediators between social status (race or gender) and mental health outcomes. Discrimination frequency and scope mediated the association between race and mental health, with a stronger effect via frequency among sexual minority women. Number of discrimination bases mediated the association between gender and mental health among Black sexual minorities. Future research and clinical practice would benefit from considering Black sexual minority women's mental health in a multidimensional minority stress context.

  2. Pulse-width discriminators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Budyashov, Yu.G.; Grebenyuk, V.M.; Zinov, V.G.

    1978-01-01

    A pulse duration discriminator is described which is intended for processing signals from multilayer scintillators. The basic elements of the scintillator are: an input gate, a current generator, an integrating capacitor, a Schmidt trigger and an anticoincidence circuit. The basic circuit of the discriminator and its time diagrams explaining its operating are given. The discriminator is based on microcircuits. Pulse duration discrimination threshold changes continuously from 20 to 100 ns, while its amplitude threshold changes within 20 to 100 mV. The temperature instability of discrimination thresholds (both in pulse width and in amplitude) is better than 0.1 per cent/deg C

  3. Stimulus induced bursts in severe postanoxic encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tjepkema-Cloostermans, Marleen C; Wijers, Elisabeth T; van Putten, Michel J A M

    2016-11-01

    To report on a distinct effect of auditory and sensory stimuli on the EEG in comatose patients with severe postanoxic encephalopathy. In two comatose patients admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) with severe postanoxic encephalopathy and burst-suppression EEG, we studied the effect of external stimuli (sound and touch) on the occurrence of bursts. In patient A bursts could be induced by either auditory or sensory stimuli. In patient B bursts could only be induced by touching different facial regions (forehead, nose and chin). When stimuli were presented with relatively long intervals, bursts persistently followed the stimuli, while stimuli with short intervals (encephalopathy can be induced by external stimuli, resulting in stimulus-dependent burst-suppression. Stimulus induced bursts should not be interpreted as prognostic favourable EEG reactivity. Copyright © 2016 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Inhibition of somatosensory-evoked cortical responses by a weak leading stimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakagawa, Kei; Inui, Koji; Yuge, Louis; Kakigi, Ryusuke

    2014-11-01

    We previously demonstrated that auditory-evoked cortical responses were suppressed by a weak leading stimulus in a manner similar to the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of startle reflexes. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether a similar phenomenon was present in the somatosensory system, and also whether this suppression reflected an inhibitory process. We recorded somatosensory-evoked magnetic fields following stimulation of the median nerve and evaluated the extent by which they were suppressed by inserting leading stimuli at an intensity of 2.5-, 1.5-, 1.1-, or 0.9-fold the sensory threshold (ST) in healthy participants (Experiment 1). The results obtained demonstrated that activity in the secondary somatosensory cortex in the hemisphere contralateral to the stimulated side (cSII) was significantly suppressed by a weak leading stimulus with the intensity larger than 1.1-fold ST. This result implied that the somatosensory system had an inhibitory process similar to that of PPI. We then presented two successive leading stimuli before the test stimulus, and compared the extent of suppression between the test stimulus-evoked responses and those obtained with the second prepulse alone and with two prepulses (first and second) (Experiment 2). When two prepulses were preceded, cSII responses to the second prepulse were suppressed by the first prepulse, whereas the ability of the second prepulse to suppress the test stimulus remained unchanged. These results suggested the presence of at least two individual pathways; response-generating and inhibitory pathways. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The modulation of simple reaction time by the spatial probability of a visual stimulus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carreiro L.R.R.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Simple reaction time (SRT in response to visual stimuli can be influenced by many stimulus features. The speed and accuracy with which observers respond to a visual stimulus may be improved by prior knowledge about the stimulus location, which can be obtained by manipulating the spatial probability of the stimulus. However, when higher spatial probability is achieved by holding constant the stimulus location throughout successive trials, the resulting improvement in performance can also be due to local sensory facilitation caused by the recurrent spatial location of a visual target (position priming. The main objective of the present investigation was to quantitatively evaluate the modulation of SRT by the spatial probability structure of a visual stimulus. In two experiments the volunteers had to respond as quickly as possible to the visual target presented on a computer screen by pressing an optic key with the index finger of the dominant hand. Experiment 1 (N = 14 investigated how SRT changed as a function of both the different levels of spatial probability and the subject's explicit knowledge about the precise probability structure of visual stimulation. We found a gradual decrease in SRT with increasing spatial probability of a visual target regardless of the observer's previous knowledge concerning the spatial probability of the stimulus. Error rates, below 2%, were independent of the spatial probability structure of the visual stimulus, suggesting the absence of a speed-accuracy trade-off. Experiment 2 (N = 12 examined whether changes in SRT in response to a spatially recurrent visual target might be accounted for simply by sensory and temporally local facilitation. The findings indicated that the decrease in SRT brought about by a spatially recurrent target was associated with its spatial predictability, and could not be accounted for solely in terms of sensory priming.

  6. The influence of common stimulus parameters on distortion product otoacoustic emission fine structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Tiffany A; Baranowski, Lauren G

    2012-01-01

    To determine whether common approaches to setting stimulus parameters influence the depth of fine structure present in the distortion product otoacoustic emission (DPOAE) response. Because the presence of fine structure has been suggested as a possible source of errors, if one of the common parametric approaches results in reduced fine-structure depth, it may be preferred over other approaches. DPOAE responses were recorded in a group of 21 subjects with normal hearing for 1/3-octave intervals surrounding 3 f2s (1, 2, and 4 kHz) at three L2s (30, 45, and 55 dB SPL). For each f2 and L2 combination, L1 and f2/f1 were set according to three commonly used parametric approaches. These included a simple approach, the approach recommended by Kummer et al., and the approach described by Johnson et al. These three approaches primarily differ in the recommended relationship between L1 and L2. For each parametric approach, DPOAE fine structure was evaluated by varying f2 in small steps. Differences in DPOAE level and DPOAE fine-structure depth across f2, L2, and the various stimulus parameters were evaluated using repeated-measures analysis of variance. As expected, significant variations in DPOAE level were observed across the three parametric approaches. For stimulus levels #45 dB SPL, the simple stimuli resulted in lower DPOAE levels than were observed for other approaches. An unexpected finding was that stimulus parameters developed by Johnson et al., which were believed to produce higher DPOAE levels than other approaches, produced the lowest DPOAE levels of the three approaches when f2 = 4 kHz. Significant differences in fine-structure depth were also observed. Greater fine-structure depth was observed with the simple parameters, although this effect was restricted to L2 # 45 dB SPL. When L2 = 55 dB SPL, all three parametric approaches resulted in equivalent fine-structure depth. A significant difference in fine-structure depth across the 3 f2s was also observed. The

  7. Fair lineups are better than biased lineups and showups, but not because they increase underlying discriminability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Andrew M; Wells, Gary L; Lindsay, R C L; Penrod, Steven D

    2017-04-01

    Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analysis has recently come in vogue for assessing the underlying discriminability and the applied utility of lineup procedures. Two primary assumptions underlie recommendations that ROC analysis be used to assess the applied utility of lineup procedures: (a) ROC analysis of lineups measures underlying discriminability, and (b) the procedure that produces superior underlying discriminability produces superior applied utility. These same assumptions underlie a recently derived diagnostic-feature detection theory, a theory of discriminability, intended to explain recent patterns observed in ROC comparisons of lineups. We demonstrate, however, that these assumptions are incorrect when ROC analysis is applied to lineups. We also demonstrate that a structural phenomenon of lineups, differential filler siphoning, and not the psychological phenomenon of diagnostic-feature detection, explains why lineups are superior to showups and why fair lineups are superior to biased lineups. In the process of our proofs, we show that computational simulations have assumed, unrealistically, that all witnesses share exactly the same decision criteria. When criterial variance is included in computational models, differential filler siphoning emerges. The result proves dissociation between ROC curves and underlying discriminability: Higher ROC curves for lineups than for showups and for fair than for biased lineups despite no increase in underlying discriminability. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Significance of a notch in the otoacoustic emission stimulus spectrum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grenner, J

    2012-09-01

    To explain a clinical observation: a notch in the stimulus spectrum during transient evoked otoacoustic emission measurement in ears with secretory otitis media. The effects of tympanic under-pressure were investigated using a pressure chamber. A model of the ear canal was also studied. Tympanic membrane reflectance increased as a consequence of increased stiffness, causing a notch in the stimulus spectrum. In an adult, the notch could be clearly distinguished at an under-pressure of approximately -185 daPa. The sound frequency of the notch corresponded to a wavelength four times the ear canal length. The ear canal of infants was too short to cause a notch within the displayed frequency range. The notch was demonstrated using both Otodynamics and Madsen equipment. A notch in the otoacoustic emission stimulus spectrum can be caused by increased stiffness of the tympanic membrane, raising suspicion of low middle-ear pressure or secretory otitis media. This finding is not applicable to infants.

  9. Pharmacological evidence that both cognitive memory and habit formation contribute to within-session learning of concurrent visual discriminations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turchi, Janita; Devan, Bryan; Yin, Pingbo; Sigrist, Emmalynn; Mishkin, Mortimer

    2010-07-01

    The monkey's ability to learn a set of visual discriminations presented concurrently just once a day on successive days (24-h ITI task) is based on habit formation, which is known to rely on a visuo-striatal circuit and to be independent of visuo-rhinal circuits that support one-trial memory. Consistent with this dissociation, we recently reported that performance on the 24-h ITI task is impaired by a striatal-function blocking agent, the dopaminergic antagonist haloperidol, and not by a rhinal-function blocking agent, the muscarinic cholinergic antagonist scopolamine. In the present study, monkeys were trained on a short-ITI form of concurrent visual discrimination learning, one in which a set of stimulus pairs is repeated not only across daily sessions but also several times within each session (in this case, at about 4-min ITIs). Asymptotic discrimination learning rates in the non-drug condition were reduced by half, from approximately 11 trials/pair on the 24-h ITI task to approximately 5 trials/pair on the 4-min ITI task, and this faster learning was impaired by systemic injections of either haloperidol or scopolamine. The results suggest that in the version of concurrent discrimination learning used here, the short ITIs within a session recruit both visuo-rhinal and visuo-striatal circuits, and that the final performance level is driven by both cognitive memory and habit formation working in concert.

  10. Generating a taxonomy of spatially cued attention for visual discrimination: Effects of judgment precision and set size on attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hetley, Richard; Dosher, Barbara Anne; Lu, Zhong-Lin

    2014-01-01

    Attention precues improve the performance of perceptual tasks in many but not all circumstances. These spatial attention effects may depend upon display set size or workload, and have been variously attributed to external noise filtering, stimulus enhancement, contrast gain, or response gain, or to uncertainty or other decision effects. In this study, we document systematically different effects of spatial attention in low- and high-precision judgments, with and without external noise, and in different set sizes in order to contribute to the development of a taxonomy of spatial attention. An elaborated perceptual template model (ePTM) provides an integrated account of a complex set of effects of spatial attention with just two attention factors: a set-size dependent exclusion or filtering of external noise and a narrowing of the perceptual template to focus on the signal stimulus. These results are related to the previous literature by classifying the judgment precision and presence of external noise masks in those experiments, suggesting a taxonomy of spatially cued attention in discrimination accuracy. PMID:24939234

  11. Generating a taxonomy of spatially cued attention for visual discrimination: effects of judgment precision and set size on attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hetley, Richard; Dosher, Barbara Anne; Lu, Zhong-Lin

    2014-11-01

    Attention precues improve the performance of perceptual tasks in many but not all circumstances. These spatial attention effects may depend upon display set size or workload, and have been variously attributed to external noise filtering, stimulus enhancement, contrast gain, or response gain, or to uncertainty or other decision effects. In this study, we document systematically different effects of spatial attention in low- and high-precision judgments, with and without external noise, and in different set sizes in order to contribute to the development of a taxonomy of spatial attention. An elaborated perceptual template model (ePTM) provides an integrated account of a complex set of effects of spatial attention with just two attention factors: a set-size dependent exclusion or filtering of external noise and a narrowing of the perceptual template to focus on the signal stimulus. These results are related to the previous literature by classifying the judgment precision and presence of external noise masks in those experiments, suggesting a taxonomy of spatially cued attention in discrimination accuracy.

  12. Dissociation between spontaneously hypertensive (SHR) andWistar–Kyoto (WKY) rats in baseline performance and methylphenidate response on measures of attention, impulsivity and hyperactivity in a Visual Stimulus Position Discrimination Task

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thanos, P.K.

    2009-10-08

    The spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) is a widely accepted rodent model of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and methylphenidate (MP) is a central nervous systemstimulant that has been shown to have a dose-related positive effect on attention task performance in humans with ADHD. The current study was undertaken to compare SHR to its typical control strain, Wistar-Kyoto(WKY) rats, on the performance of a Visual Stimulus Position Discrimination Task (VSPDT) as well as of the responsiveness of the two rat strains to MP treatment. The rats were initially trained on the VSPDT, in which a light cue was presented randomly at three different cue-light intervals (1 s, 300 ms and 100 ms) over one of two levers, and presses on the lever corresponding to the light cue were reinforced with a food pellet. Once rats reached stable performance, the treatment phase of the study began, during which they received daily intraperitoneal (IP) injections of saline, 2 mg/kg, 5 mg/kg, and 10 mg/kg of MP in a randomized order immediately prior to being tested on the VSPDT. Baseline performance accuracy on the VSPDT did not differ between the groups. Furthermore, a striking strain dissociation was evident in the response of the two strains to treatment; VSPDT performance was substantially disrupted by the 5 and 10 mg/kg dose in the WKY rats but only mildly in the SHR rats. Response omissions were also increased only in WKY rats. Finally, both strains had increased locomotor activity in the operant chamber following MP treatment. These findings point to an important difference in response tendency toMP in the two strains that supports a view that a critical difference between these strains may suggest neurochemical and neuroadaptive differences associated with the behavioral impairments of ADHD.

  13. Conditioned pain modulation is minimally influenced by cognitive evaluation or imagery of the conditioning stimulus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernaba M

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Mario Bernaba, Kevin A Johnson, Jiang-Ti Kong, Sean MackeyStanford Systems Neuroscience and Pain Laboratory, Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, USAPurpose: Conditioned pain modulation (CPM is an experimental approach for probing endogenous analgesia by which one painful stimulus (the conditioning stimulus may inhibit the perceived pain of a subsequent stimulus (the test stimulus. Animal studies suggest that CPM is mediated by a spino–bulbo–spinal loop using objective measures such as neuronal firing. In humans, pain ratings are often used as the end point. Because pain self-reports are subject to cognitive influences, we tested whether cognitive factors would impact on CPM results in healthy humans.Methods: We conducted a within-subject, crossover study of healthy adults to determine the extent to which CPM is affected by 1 threatening and reassuring evaluation and 2 imagery alone of a cold conditioning stimulus. We used a heat stimulus individualized to 5/10 on a visual analog scale as the testing stimulus and computed the magnitude of CPM by subtracting the postconditioning rating from the baseline pain rating of the heat stimulus.Results: We found that although evaluation can increase the pain rating of the conditioning stimulus, it did not significantly alter the magnitude of CPM. We also found that imagery of cold pain alone did not result in statistically significant CPM effect.Conclusion: Our results suggest that CPM is primarily dependent on sensory input, and that the cortical processes of evaluation and imagery have little impact on CPM. These findings lend support for CPM as a useful tool for probing endogenous analgesia through subcortical mechanisms.Keywords: conditioned pain modulation, endogenous analgesia, evaluation, imagery, cold presser test, CHEPS, contact heat-evoked potential stimulator

  14. Hard and soft age discrimination: the dual nature of workplace discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stypinska, Justyna; Turek, Konrad

    2017-03-01

    The paper concentrates on the problem of age discrimination in the labour market and the way it can be conceptualised and measured in a multi-disciplinary way. The approach proposed here combines two understandings of age discrimination-a sociological and legal one, what allows for a fuller and expanded understanding of ageism in the workplace. At the heart of the study is a survey carried out in Poland with a sample of 1000 men and women aged 45-65 years. The study takes a deeper and innovative look into the issue of age discrimination in employment. Confirmatory factor analysis with WLSMV estimation and logistic regressions were used to test the hypotheses. The study shows that age discrimination in labour market can take on different forms: hard and soft, where the hard type of age discrimination mirrors the legally prohibited types of behaviours and those which relate to the actual decisions of employers which can impact on the employee's career development. The soft discrimination corresponds with those occurrences, which are not inscribed in the legal system per se, are occurring predominantly in the interpersonal sphere, but can nevertheless have negative consequences. Soft discrimination was experienced more often (28.6% of respondents) than hard discrimination (15.7%) with higher occurrences among women, persons in precarious job situation or residents of urban areas. The role of education was not confirmed to influence the levels of perceived age discrimination.

  15. Quantifying explainable discrimination and removing illegal discrimination in automated decision making

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kamiran, F.; Zliobaite, I.; Calders, T.G.K.

    2013-01-01

    Recently, the following discrimination-aware classification problem was introduced. Historical data used for supervised learning may contain discrimination, for instance, with respect to gender. The question addressed by discrimination-aware techniques is, given sensitive attribute, how to train

  16. Crisis, Stimulus Package and Migration in China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Csanádi, Maria; Nie, Zihan; Li, Shi

    2015-01-01

    This paper analyzes the short-term and long-term effects that the global economic crisis and the investment priorities of the Chinese Government's stimulus package had on Chinese migrant flows between 2008 and 2014. Combining micro-level household survey data and macro-level statistics, the

  17. Bigrams and the Richness of the Stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kam, Xuan-Nga Cao; Stoyneshka, Iglika; Tornyova, Lidiya; Fodor, Janet D.; Sakas, William G.

    2008-01-01

    Recent challenges to Chomsky's "poverty of the stimulus" thesis for language acquisition suggest that children's primary data may carry "indirect evidence" about linguistic constructions despite containing no instances of them. Indirect evidence is claimed to suffice for grammar acquisition, without need for innate knowledge. This article reports…

  18. In vivo stimulus presentation to the mouse vomeronasal system: Surgery, experiment, setup, and software.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoles-Frenkel, Michal; Cohen, Oksana; Bansal, Rohini; Horesh, Noa; Ben-Shaul, Yoram

    2017-06-15

    Achieving controlled stimulus delivery is a major challenge in the physiological analysis of the vomeronasal system (VNS). We provide a comprehensive description of a setup allowing controlled stimulus delivery into the vomeronasal organ (VNO) of anesthetized mice. VNO suction is achieved via electrical stimulation of the sympathetic nerve trunk (SNT) using cuff electrodes, followed by flushing of the nasal cavity. Successful application of this methodology depends on several aspects including the surgical preparation, fabrication of cuff electrodes, experimental setup modifications, and the stimulus delivery and flushing. Here, we describe all these aspects in sufficient detail to allow other researchers to readily adopt it. We also present a custom written MATLAB based software with a graphical user interface that controls all aspects of the actual experiment, including trial sequencing, hardware control, and data logging. The method allows measurement of stimulus evoked sensory responses in brain regions that receive vomeronasal inputs. An experienced investigator can complete the entire surgical procedure within thirty minutes. This is the only approach that allows repeated and controlled stimulus delivery to the intact VNO, employing the natural mode of stimulus uptake. The approach is economical with respect to stimuli, requiring stimulus volumes as low as 1-2μl. This comprehensive description will allow other investigators to adapt this setup to their own experimental needs and can thus promote our physiological understanding of this fascinating chemosensory system. With minor changes it can also be adapted for other rodent species. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Social Status Correlates of Reporting Racial Discrimination and Gender Discrimination among Racially Diverse Women

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ro, Annie E.; Choi, Kyung-Hee

    2009-01-01

    The growing body of research on discrimination and health indicates a deleterious effect of discrimination on various health outcomes. However, less is known about the sociodemographic correlates of reporting racial discrimination and gender discrimination among racially diverse women. We examined the associations of social status characteristics with lifetime experiences of racial discrimination and gender discrimination using a racially-diverse sample of 754 women attending family planning clinics in Northern California (11.4% African American, 16.8% Latina, 10.1% Asian and 61.7% Caucasian). A multivariate analysis revealed that race, financial difficulty and marital status were significantly correlated with higher reports of racial discrimination, while race, education, financial difficulty and nativity were significantly correlated with gender discrimination scores. Our findings suggest that the social patterning of perceiving racial discrimination is somewhat different from that of gender discrimination. This has implications in the realm of discrimination research and applied interventions, as different forms of discrimination may have unique covariates that should be accounted for in research analysis or program design. PMID:19485231

  20. Social status correlates of reporting gender discrimination and racial discrimination among racially diverse women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ro, Annie E; Choi, Kyung-Hee

    2009-01-01

    The growing body of research on discrimination and health indicates a deleterious effect of discrimination on various health outcomes. However, less is known about the sociodemographic correlates of reporting racial discrimination and gender discrimination among racially diverse women. We examined the associations of social status characteristics with lifetime experiences of racial discrimination and gender discrimination using a racially-diverse sample of 754 women attending family planning clinics in North California (11.4% African American, 16.8% Latina, 10.1% Asian and 61.7% Caucasian). A multivariate analysis revealed that race, financial difficulty and marital status were significantly correlated with higher reports of racial discrimination, while race, education, financial difficulty and nativity were significantly correlated with gender discrimination scores. Our findings suggest that the social patterning of perceiving racial discrimination is somewhat different from that of gender discrimination. This has implications in the realm of discrimination research and applied interventions, as different forms of discrimination may have unique covariates that should be accounted for in research analysis or program design.

  1. Reinforcement shapes clines in female mate discrimination in Drosophila subquinaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bewick, Emily R.; Dyer, Kelly A.

    2014-01-01

    Reinforcement of species boundaries may alter mate recognition in a way that also affects patterns of mate preference among conspecific populations. In the fly Drosophila subquinaria, females sympatric with the closely related species D. recens reject mating with heterospecific males as well as with conspecific males from allopatric populations. Here, we assess geographic variation in behavioral isolation within and among populations of D. subquinaria and use cline theory to understand patterns of selection on reinforced discrimination and its consequences for sexual isolation within species. We find that selection has fixed rejection of D. recens males in sympatry, while significant genetic variation in this behavior occurs within allopatric populations. In conspecific matings sexual isolation is also asymmetric and stronger in populations that are sympatric with D. recens. The clines in behavioral discrimination within and between species are similar in shape and are maintained by strong selection in the face of gene flow, and we show that some of their genetic basis may be either shared or linked. Thus, while reinforcement can drive extremely strong phenotypic divergence, the long-term consequences for incipient speciation depend on gene flow, genetic linkage of discrimination traits, and the cost of these behaviors in allopatry. PMID:25163510

  2. The Bodily Expressive Action Stimulus Test (BEAST). Construction and Validation of a Stimulus Basis for Measuring Perception of Whole Body Expression of Emotions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Gelder, Beatrice; Van den Stock, Jan

    2011-01-01

    Whole body expressions are among the main visual stimulus categories that are naturally associated with faces and the neuroscientific investigation of how body expressions are processed has entered the research agenda this last decade. Here we describe the stimulus set of whole body expressions termed bodily expressive action stimulus test (BEAST), and we provide validation data for use of these materials by the community of emotion researchers. The database was composed of 254 whole body expressions from 46 actors expressing 4 emotions (anger, fear, happiness, and sadness). In all pictures the face of the actor was blurred and participants were asked to categorize the emotions expressed in the stimuli in a four alternative-forced-choice task. The results show that all emotions are well recognized, with sadness being the easiest, followed by fear, whereas happiness was the most difficult. The BEAST appears a valuable addition to currently available tools for assessing recognition of affective signals. It can be used in explicit recognition tasks as well as in matching tasks and in implicit tasks, combined either with facial expressions, with affective prosody, or presented with affective pictures as context in healthy subjects as well as in clinical populations.

  3. Utilization of reward-prospect enhances preparatory attention and reduces stimulus conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Berg, Berry; Krebs, Ruth M; Lorist, Monicque M; Woldorff, Marty G

    2014-06-01

    The prospect of gaining money is an incentive widely at play in the real world. Such monetary motivation might have particularly strong influence when the cognitive system is challenged, such as when needing to process conflicting stimulus inputs. Here, we employed manipulations of reward-prospect and attentional-preparation levels in a cued-Stroop stimulus conflict task, along with the high temporal resolution of electrical brain recordings, to provide insight into the mechanisms by which reward-prospect and attention interact and modulate cognitive task performance. In this task, the cue indicated whether or not the participant needed to prepare for an upcoming Stroop stimulus and, if so, whether there was the potential for monetary reward (dependent on performance on that trial). Both cued attention and cued reward-prospect enhanced preparatory neural activity, as reflected by increases in the hallmark attention-related negative-polarity ERP slow wave (contingent negative variation [CNV]) and reductions in oscillatory Alpha activity, which was followed by enhanced processing of the subsequent Stroop stimulus. In addition, similar modulations of preparatory neural activity (larger CNVs and reduced Alpha) predicted shorter versus longer response times (RTs) to the subsequent target stimulus, consistent with such modulations reflecting trial-to-trial variations in attention. Particularly striking were the individual differences in the utilization of reward-prospect information. In particular, the size of the reward effects on the preparatory neural activity correlated across participants with the degree to which reward-prospect both facilitated overall task performance (shorter RTs) and reduced conflict-related behavioral interference. Thus, the prospect of reward appears to recruit attentional preparation circuits to enhance processing of task-relevant target information.

  4. Stimulus recognition occurs under high perceptual load: Evidence from correlated flankers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cosman, Joshua D; Mordkoff, J Toby; Vecera, Shaun P

    2016-12-01

    A dominant account of selective attention, perceptual load theory, proposes that when attentional resources are exhausted, task-irrelevant information receives little attention and goes unrecognized. However, the flanker effect-typically used to assay stimulus identification-requires an arbitrary mapping between a stimulus and a response. We looked for failures of flanker identification by using a more-sensitive measure that does not require arbitrary stimulus-response mappings: the correlated flankers effect. We found that flanking items that were task-irrelevant but that correlated with target identity produced a correlated flanker effect. Participants were faster on trials in which the irrelevant flanker had previously correlated with the target than when it did not. Of importance, this correlated flanker effect appeared regardless of perceptual load, occurring even in high-load displays that should have abolished flanker identification. Findings from a standard flanker task replicated the basic perceptual load effect, with flankers not affecting response times under high perceptual load. Our results indicate that task-irrelevant information can be processed to a high level (identification), even under high perceptual load. This challenges a strong account of high perceptual load effects that hypothesizes complete failures of stimulus identification under high perceptual load. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  5. Different levels of food restriction reveal genotype-specific differences in learning a visual discrimination task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalina Makowiecki

    Full Text Available In behavioural experiments, motivation to learn can be achieved using food rewards as positive reinforcement in food-restricted animals. Previous studies reduce animal weights to 80-90% of free-feeding body weight as the criterion for food restriction. However, effects of different degrees of food restriction on task performance have not been assessed. We compared learning task performance in mice food-restricted to 80 or 90% body weight (BW. We used adult wildtype (WT; C57Bl/6j and knockout (ephrin-A2⁻/⁻ mice, previously shown to have a reverse learning deficit. Mice were trained in a two-choice visual discrimination task with food reward as positive reinforcement. When mice reached criterion for one visual stimulus (80% correct in three consecutive 10 trial sets they began the reverse learning phase, where the rewarded stimulus was switched to the previously incorrect stimulus. For the initial learning and reverse phase of the task, mice at 90%BW took almost twice as many trials to reach criterion as mice at 80%BW. Furthermore, WT 80 and 90%BW groups significantly differed in percentage correct responses and learning strategy in the reverse learning phase, whereas no differences between weight restriction groups were observed in ephrin-A2⁻/⁻ mice. Most importantly, genotype-specific differences in reverse learning strategy were only detected in the 80%BW groups. Our results indicate that increased food restriction not only results in better performance and a shorter training period, but may also be necessary for revealing behavioural differences between experimental groups. This has important ethical and animal welfare implications when deciding extent of diet restriction in behavioural studies.

  6. Long term effects of aversive reinforcement on colour discrimination learning in free-flying bumblebees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel A Rodríguez-Gironés

    Full Text Available The results of behavioural experiments provide important information about the structure and information-processing abilities of the visual system. Nevertheless, if we want to infer from behavioural data how the visual system operates, it is important to know how different learning protocols affect performance and to devise protocols that minimise noise in the response of experimental subjects. The purpose of this work was to investigate how reinforcement schedule and individual variability affect the learning process in a colour discrimination task. Free-flying bumblebees were trained to discriminate between two perceptually similar colours. The target colour was associated with sucrose solution, and the distractor could be associated with water or quinine solution throughout the experiment, or with one substance during the first half of the experiment and the other during the second half. Both acquisition and final performance of the discrimination task (measured as proportion of correct choices were determined by the choice of reinforcer during the first half of the experiment: regardless of whether bees were trained with water or quinine during the second half of the experiment, bees trained with quinine during the first half learned the task faster and performed better during the whole experiment. Our results confirm that the choice of stimuli used during training affects the rate at which colour discrimination tasks are acquired and show that early contact with a strongly aversive stimulus can be sufficient to maintain high levels of attention during several hours. On the other hand, bees which took more time to decide on which flower to alight were more likely to make correct choices than bees which made fast decisions. This result supports the existence of a trade-off between foraging speed and accuracy, and highlights the importance of measuring choice latencies during behavioural experiments focusing on cognitive abilities.

  7. Handling conditional discrimination

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zliobaite, I.; Kamiran, F.; Calders, T.G.K.

    2011-01-01

    Historical data used for supervised learning may contain discrimination. We study how to train classifiers on such data, so that they are discrimination free with respect to a given sensitive attribute, e.g., gender. Existing techniques that deal with this problem aim at removing all discrimination

  8. Simple 3-D stimulus for motion parallax and its simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ono, Hiroshi; Chornenkyy, Yevgen; D'Amour, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Simulation of a given stimulus situation should produce the same perception as the original. Rogers et al (2009 Perception 38 907-911) simulated Wheeler's (1982, PhD thesis, Rutgers University, NJ) motion parallax stimulus and obtained quite different perceptions. Wheeler's observers were unable to reliably report the correct direction of depth, whereas Rogers's were. With three experiments we explored the possible reasons for the discrepancy. Our results suggest that Rogers was able to see depth from the simulation partly due to his experience seeing depth with random dot surfaces.

  9. Adolescent development of context-dependent stimulus-reward association memory and its neural correlates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voss, Joel L; O'Neil, Jonathan T; Kharitonova, Maria; Briggs-Gowan, Margaret J; Wakschlag, Lauren S

    2015-01-01

    Expression of learned stimulus-reward associations based on context is essential for regulation of behavior to meet situational demands. Contextual regulation improves during development, although the developmental progression of relevant neural and cognitive processes is not fully specified. We therefore measured neural correlates of flexible, contextual expression of stimulus-reward associations in pre/early-adolescent children (ages 9-13 years) and young adults (ages 19-22 years). After reinforcement learning using standard parameters, a contextual reversal manipulation was used whereby contextual cues indicated that stimulus-reward associations were the same as previously reinforced for some trials (consistent trials) or were reversed on other trials (inconsistent trials). Subjects were thus required to respond according to original stimulus-reward associations vs. reversed associations based on trial-specific contextual cues. Children and young adults did not differ in reinforcement learning or in relevant functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) correlates. In contrast, adults outperformed children during contextual reversal, with better performance specifically for inconsistent trials. fMRI signals corresponding to this selective advantage included greater activity in lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC), hippocampus, and dorsal striatum for young adults relative to children. Flexible expression of stimulus-reward associations based on context thus improves via adolescent development, as does recruitment of brain regions involved in reward learning and contextual expression of memory. HighlightsEarly-adolescent children and young adults were equivalent in reinforcement learning.Adults outperformed children in contextual expression of stimulus-reward associations.Adult advantages correlated with increased activity of relevant brain regions.Specific neurocognitive developmental changes support better contextual regulation.

  10. Phosphene-guided transcranial magnetic stimulation of occipital but not parietal cortex suppresses stimulus visibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapia, Evelina; Mazzi, Chiara; Savazzi, Silvia; Beck, Diane M.

    2014-01-01

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) applied over the occipital lobe approximately 100 ms after the onset of a stimulus decreases its visibility if it appears in the location of the phosphene. Because phosphenes can also be elicited by stimulation of the parietal regions, we asked if the same procedure that is used to reduce visibility of stimuli with occipital TMS will lead to decreased stimulus visibility when TMS is applied to parietal regions. TMS was randomly applied at 0 to 130 ms after the onset of the stimulus (SOA) in steps of 10 ms in occipital and parietal regions. Participants responded to the orientation of the line stimulus and rated its visibility. We replicate previous reports of phosphenes from both occipital and parietal TMS. As previously reported, we also observed visual suppression around the classical 100 ms window both in the objective line orientation and subjective visibility responses with occipital TMS. Parietal stimulation, on the other hand, did not consistently reduce stimulus visibility in any time window. PMID:24584900

  11. Isomorphism Between Estes’ Stimulus Fluctuation Model and a Physical- Chemical System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Makoto Yamaguchi

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Although Estes’ Stimulus Sampling Theory has almost completely lost its influence, its theoretical framework has not been disproved. Particularly, one theory in that framework, Stimulus Fluctuation Model, is still important because it explains spontaneous recovery. In this short note, the process of the theory is shown to be isomorphic to the diffusion of solution between compartments. Envisioning the theory as diffusion will make it appear less artificial and suggest natural extensions.

  12. A perceptual learning deficit in Chinese developmental dyslexia as revealed by visual texture discrimination training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhengke; Cheng-Lai, Alice; Song, Yan; Cutting, Laurie; Jiang, Yuzheng; Lin, Ou; Meng, Xiangzhi; Zhou, Xiaolin

    2014-08-01

    Learning to read involves discriminating between different written forms and establishing connections with phonology and semantics. This process may be partially built upon visual perceptual learning, during which the ability to process the attributes of visual stimuli progressively improves with practice. The present study investigated to what extent Chinese children with developmental dyslexia have deficits in perceptual learning by using a texture discrimination task, in which participants were asked to discriminate the orientation of target bars. Experiment l demonstrated that, when all of the participants started with the same initial stimulus-to-mask onset asynchrony (SOA) at 300 ms, the threshold SOA, adjusted according to response accuracy for reaching 80% accuracy, did not show a decrement over 5 days of training for children with dyslexia, whereas this threshold SOA steadily decreased over the training for the control group. Experiment 2 used an adaptive procedure to determine the threshold SOA for each participant during training. Results showed that both the group of dyslexia and the control group attained perceptual learning over the sessions in 5 days, although the threshold SOAs were significantly higher for the group of dyslexia than for the control group; moreover, over individual participants, the threshold SOA negatively correlated with their performance in Chinese character recognition. These findings suggest that deficits in visual perceptual processing and learning might, in part, underpin difficulty in reading Chinese. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  13. Social Status Correlates of Reporting Racial Discrimination and Gender Discrimination among Racially Diverse Women

    OpenAIRE

    Ro, Annie E.; Choi, Kyung-Hee

    2009-01-01

    The growing body of research on discrimination and health indicates a deleterious effect of discrimination on various health outcomes. However, less is known about the sociodemographic correlates of reporting racial discrimination and gender discrimination among racially diverse women. We examined the associations of social status characteristics with lifetime experiences of racial discrimination and gender discrimination using a racially-diverse sample of 754 women attending family planning ...

  14. Dissociating neural variability related to stimulus quality and response times in perceptual decision-making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bode, Stefan; Bennett, Daniel; Sewell, David K; Paton, Bryan; Egan, Gary F; Smith, Philip L; Murawski, Carsten

    2018-03-01

    According to sequential sampling models, perceptual decision-making is based on accumulation of noisy evidence towards a decision threshold. The speed with which a decision is reached is determined by both the quality of incoming sensory information and random trial-by-trial variability in the encoded stimulus representations. To investigate those decision dynamics at the neural level, participants made perceptual decisions while functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was conducted. On each trial, participants judged whether an image presented under conditions of high, medium, or low visual noise showed a piano or a chair. Higher stimulus quality (lower visual noise) was associated with increased activation in bilateral medial occipito-temporal cortex and ventral striatum. Lower stimulus quality was related to stronger activation in posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). When stimulus quality was fixed, faster response times were associated with a positive parametric modulation of activation in medial prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortex, while slower response times were again related to more activation in PPC, DLPFC and insula. Our results suggest that distinct neural networks were sensitive to the quality of stimulus information, and to trial-to-trial variability in the encoded stimulus representations, but that reaching a decision was a consequence of their joint activity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Behavioral Motivations of Gender Discrimination on the Labor Market in Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorel AILENEI

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Gender discrimination can be explained at the level ofsegregation on the labor market by the employers' perceptions about maleand female workforce, by the level of development of a country, employersand employees.In any society, people are categorized from the attributes(stereotypical or not which are supposed to be shared with their owngroup. Usually these attributes are anticipated based on stereotypesconveyed on behalf of different groups (Goffman, 1974. Stereotypes arethose beliefs and opinions about the characteristics of men and women.The features associated with the two groups generally show us not onlyhow men and women are perceived, and also how it should be.Stereotyping can be the basis for the discriminatory treatment in mostcases (Linville, Salovey, Fisher, 1986.In this article we presented the main theories that can explain thewage discrimination and we analyzed the discriminatory attitudes ofgender on the Romanian labor market using the Economic and socialcohesion survey.

  16. Racial discrimination, gender discrimination, and substance abuse among Latina/os nationwide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otiniano Verissimo, Angie Denisse; Gee, Gilbert C; Ford, Chandra L; Iguchi, Martin Y

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the relationship between discrimination and substance abuse among Latina/os, and further examines whether this relationship differs by gender and type of discrimination. Analyses focus on the Latina/o respondents (n = 1,039 men; n = 1,273 women) from the National Latino and Asian American Study carried out from 2002-2003. Outcomes were alcohol abuse and drug abuse measured using DSM-IV definitions and criteria. Additional covariates included immigrant characteristics and demographics. Analyses were completed using gender-stratified multinomial logistic regression. Men reported more discrimination (39.6% vs. 30.3%) and had higher prevalence of alcohol abuse (16.5% vs. 4.5%) and drug abuse (9.5% vs. 2.3%) than women. Discrimination was significantly associated with increased risk of alcohol abuse for women and increased risk of drug abuse for men. Men and women also varied in the types of discrimination (e.g., racial vs. gender) reported, and in the associations between these types of discrimination and substance abuse. These data indicate that discrimination is associated with different substance abuse outcomes between genders. Future research should consider the mechanisms that explain these differences.

  17. LABOR DISCRIMINATION IN BULGARIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vyara Slavyanska

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Labor discrimination is a phenomenon with very serious social and economic consequences, which has increased actuality and importance in Bulgaria nowadays. Because of the high price of discrimination, building effective anti-discrimination legislation occupies a special place in the policy of the European Union. Despite the European directives, the presence of anti-discrimination legislation and the broadly declared anti-discrimination inclinations in our country, these are absolutely not enough for providing environment of equality, with a climate of respect and tolerance to the differences. It turns out that certain groups are definitely victims of labor discrimination. In this connection the present article consecutively identifies these groups, as well as the reasons for their discrimination, underlining the necessity and benefits of the integration of the different.

  18. Stimulus- and state-dependence of systematic bias in spatial attention: additive effects of stimulus-size and time-on-task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benwell, Christopher S Y; Harvey, Monika; Gardner, Stephanie; Thut, Gregor

    2013-03-01

    Systematic biases in spatial attention are a common finding. In the general population, a systematic leftward bias is typically observed (pseudoneglect), possibly as a consequence of right hemisphere dominance for visuospatial attention. However, this leftward bias can cross-over to a systematic rightward bias with changes in stimulus and state factors (such as line length and arousal). The processes governing these changes are still unknown. Here we tested models of spatial attention as to their ability to account for these effects. To this end, we experimentally manipulated both stimulus and state factors, while healthy participants performed a computerized version of a landmark task. State was manipulated by time-on-task (>1 h) leading to increased fatigue and a reliable left- to rightward shift in spatial bias. Stimulus was manipulated by presenting either long or short lines which was associated with a shift of subjective midpoint from a reliable leftward bias for long to a more rightward bias for short lines. Importantly, we found time-on-task and line length effects to be additive suggesting a common denominator for line bisection across all conditions, which is in disagreement with models that assume that bisection decisions in long and short lines are governed by distinct processes (Magnitude estimation vs Global/local distinction). Our findings emphasize the dynamic rather than static nature of spatial biases in midline judgement. They are best captured by theories of spatial attention positing that spatial bias is flexibly modulated, and subject to inter-hemispheric balance which can change over time or conditions to accommodate task demands or reflect fatigue. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Repeated stimulation, inter-stimulus interval and inter-electrode distance alters muscle contractile properties as measured by Tensiomyography.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah V Wilson

    Full Text Available The influence of methodological parameters on the measurement of muscle contractile properties using Tensiomyography (TMG has not been published.To investigate the; (1 reliability of stimulus amplitude needed to elicit maximum muscle displacement (Dm, (2 effect of changing inter-stimulus interval on Dm (using a fixed stimulus amplitude and contraction time (Tc, (3 the effect of changing inter-electrode distance on Dm and Tc.Within subject, repeated measures.10 participants for each objective.Dm and Tc of the rectus femoris, measured using TMG.The coefficient of variance (CV and the intra-class correlation (ICC of stimulus amplitude needed to elicit maximum Dm was 5.7% and 0.92 respectively. Dm was higher when using an inter-electrode distance of 7cm compared to 5cm [P = 0.03] and when using an inter-stimulus interval of 10s compared to 30s [P = 0.017]. Further analysis of inter-stimulus interval data, found that during 10 repeated stimuli Tc became faster after the 5th measure when compared to the second measure [P<0.05]. The 30s inter-stimulus interval produced the most stable Tc over 10 measures compared to 10s and 5s respectively.Our data suggest that the stimulus amplitude producing maximum Dm of the rectus femoris is reliable. Inter-electrode distance and inter-stimulus interval can significantly influence Dm and/ or Tc. Our results support the use of a 30s inter-stimulus interval over 10s or 5s. Future studies should determine the influence of methodological parameters on muscle contractile properties in a range of muscles.

  20. Repeated stimulation, inter-stimulus interval and inter-electrode distance alters muscle contractile properties as measured by Tensiomyography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Mark I.; Francis, Peter

    2018-01-01

    Context The influence of methodological parameters on the measurement of muscle contractile properties using Tensiomyography (TMG) has not been published. Objective To investigate the; (1) reliability of stimulus amplitude needed to elicit maximum muscle displacement (Dm), (2) effect of changing inter-stimulus interval on Dm (using a fixed stimulus amplitude) and contraction time (Tc), (3) the effect of changing inter-electrode distance on Dm and Tc. Design Within subject, repeated measures. Participants 10 participants for each objective. Main outcome measures Dm and Tc of the rectus femoris, measured using TMG. Results The coefficient of variance (CV) and the intra-class correlation (ICC) of stimulus amplitude needed to elicit maximum Dm was 5.7% and 0.92 respectively. Dm was higher when using an inter-electrode distance of 7cm compared to 5cm [P = 0.03] and when using an inter-stimulus interval of 10s compared to 30s [P = 0.017]. Further analysis of inter-stimulus interval data, found that during 10 repeated stimuli Tc became faster after the 5th measure when compared to the second measure [P<0.05]. The 30s inter-stimulus interval produced the most stable Tc over 10 measures compared to 10s and 5s respectively. Conclusion Our data suggest that the stimulus amplitude producing maximum Dm of the rectus femoris is reliable. Inter-electrode distance and inter-stimulus interval can significantly influence Dm and/ or Tc. Our results support the use of a 30s inter-stimulus interval over 10s or 5s. Future studies should determine the influence of methodological parameters on muscle contractile properties in a range of muscles. PMID:29451885

  1. Ethnic socialization, perceived discrimination, and psychological adjustment among transracially adopted and nonadopted ethnic minority adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Tara; Braje, Sopagna Eap; Kawahara, Debra; Shuman, Tara

    2016-01-01

    Little is known on how transracial adoptees (TRA) navigate issues of race and ethnicity. Using Shared Fate Theory as a framework, this study was interested in the moderating role of adoption status among a group of ethnic minority adults in explaining the relationship between ethnic socialization, perceived discrimination, and mental health outcomes. Nonadopted (NA; n = 83) and TRA (n = 87) ethnic minorities responded to measures on ethnic socialization, perceived discrimination, and psychological outcomes administered online. TRA and NA ethnic minorities reported similar levels of ethnic socialization, perceived discrimination, and psychological outcomes (depression and self-esteem). Perceived discrimination was significantly associated with depression for both TRA and NA ethnic minorities. Ordinal Least Squares (OLS) regressions that were run for a moderated moderational analysis suggest that the protective role of ethnic socialization depended on adoption status. Among the different forms of ethnic socialization, cultural socialization and preparation for bias significantly buffered against the effects of perceived discrimination, but the effects were more pronounced for TRA than for NA ethnic minorities. Because NA and TRA ethnic minorities were similarly affected by discrimination, it suggests that being a TRA does not confer any additional risk when experiencing discrimination. Additionally, the study found that ethnic socialization may continue to serve a protective role against the effects of discrimination into adulthood for TRA, but less so for NA ethnic minorities. These results have policy implications regarding the role of parental ethnicity in adoption decisions as well as the importance of educating adopted parents about ethnic socialization for ethnic minority children. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. TMS effects on subjective and objective measures of vision: stimulation intensity and pre- versus post-stimulus masking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Graaf, Tom A; Cornelsen, Sonja; Jacobs, Christianne; Sack, Alexander T

    2011-12-01

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can be used to mask visual stimuli, disrupting visual task performance or preventing visual awareness. While TMS masking studies generally fix stimulation intensity, we hypothesized that varying the intensity of TMS pulses in a masking paradigm might inform several ongoing debates concerning TMS disruption of vision as measured subjectively versus objectively, and pre-stimulus (forward) versus post-stimulus (backward) TMS masking. We here show that both pre-stimulus TMS pulses and post-stimulus TMS pulses could strongly mask visual stimuli. We found no dissociations between TMS effects on the subjective and objective measures of vision for any masking window or intensity, ruling out the option that TMS intensity levels determine whether dissociations between subjective and objective vision are obtained. For the post-stimulus time window particularly, we suggest that these data provide new constraints for (e.g. recurrent) models of vision and visual awareness. Finally, our data are in line with the idea that pre-stimulus masking operates differently from conventional post-stimulus masking. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Stimulus Competition in Pre/Post and Online Ratings in an Evaluative Learning Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purkis, Helena M.; Lipp, Ottmar V.

    2010-01-01

    Evaluative learning is said to differ from Pavlovian associative learning in that it reflects stimulus contiguity, not contingency. Thus, evaluative learning should not be subject to stimulus competition, a proposal tested in the current experiments. Participants were presented in elemental and compound training phases with pictures of shapes as…

  4. Set discrimination of quantum states

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Shengyu; Ying Mingsheng

    2002-01-01

    We introduce a notion of set discrimination, which is an interesting extension of quantum state discrimination. A state is secretly chosen from a number of quantum states, which are partitioned into some disjoint sets. A set discrimination is required to identify which set the given state belongs to. Several essential problems are addressed in this paper, including the condition of perfect set discrimination, unambiguous set discrimination, and in the latter case, the efficiency of the discrimination. This generalizes some important results on quantum state discrimination in the literature. A combination of state and set discrimination and the efficiency are also studied

  5. Discrimination and delusional ideation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssen, I; Hanssen, M; Bak, M; Bijl, R V; de Graaf, R; Vollebergh, W; McKenzie, K; van Os, J

    2003-01-01

    In the UK and The Netherlands, people with high rates of psychosis are chronically exposed to discrimination. To test whether perceived discrimination is associated longitudinally with onset of psychosis. A 3-year prospective study of cohorts with no history of psychosis and differential rates of reported discrimination on the basis of age, gender, disability, appearance, skin colour or ethnicity and sexual orientation was conducted in the Dutch general population (n=4076). The main outcome was onset of psychotic symptoms (delusions and hallucinations). The rate of delusional ideation was 0.5% (n=19) in those who did not report discrimination, 0.9% (n=4) in those who reported discrimination in one domain, and 2.7% (n=3) in those who reported discrimination in more than one domain (exact P=0.027). This association remained after adjustment for possible confounders. No association was found between baseline discrimination and onset of hallucinatory experiences. Perceived discrimination may induce delusional ideation and thus contribute to the high observed rates of psychotic disorder in exposed minority populations.

  6. Development of a Chirp Stimulus PC-Based Auditory Brainstem Response Audiometer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali AL-Afsaa

    2004-05-01

    Full Text Available Hearing losses during infancy and childhood have many negative future effects and impacts on the child life and productivity. The earlier detection of hearing losses, the earlier medical intervention and then the greater benefit of remediation will be. During this research a PC-based audiometer is designed and, currently, the audiometer prototype is in its final development steps. It is based on the auditory brainstem response (ABR method. Chirp stimuli instead of traditional click stimuli will be used to invoke the ABR signal. The stimulus is designed to synchronize the hair cells movement when it spreads out over the cochlea. In addition to the available hardware utilization (PC and PCI board, the efforts confined to design and implement a hardware prototype and to develop a software package that enables the system to behave as ABR audiometer. By using such a method and chirp stimulus, it is expected to be able to detect hearing impairment (sensorineural in the first few days of the life and conduct hearing test at low frequency of stimulus. Currently, the intended chirp stimulus has been successfully generated and the implemented module is able to amplify a signal (on the order of ABR signal to a recordable level. Moreover, a NI-DAQ data acquisition board has been chosen to implement the PC-prototype interface.

  7. Self-triggered assistive stimulus training improves step initiation in persons with Parkinson’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Creath Robert A

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prior studies demonstrated that hesitation-prone persons with Parkinson’s disease (PDs acutely improve step initiation using a novel self-triggered stimulus that enhances lateral weight shift prior to step onset. PDs showed reduced anticipatory postural adjustment (APA durations, earlier step onsets, and faster 1st step speed immediately following stimulus exposure. Objective This study investigated the effects of long-term stimulus exposure. Methods Two groups of hesitation-prone subjects with Parkinson’s disease (PD participated in a 6-week step-initiation training program involving one of two stimulus conditions: 1 Drop. The stance-side support surface was lowered quickly (1.5 cm; 2 Vibration. A short vibration (100 ms was applied beneath the stance-side support surface. Stimuli were self-triggered by a 5% reduction in vertical force under the stance foot during the APA. Testing was at baseline, immediately post-training, and 6 weeks post-training. Measurements included timing and magnitude of ground reaction forces, and step speed and length. Results Both groups improved their APA force modulation after training. Contrary to previous results, neither group showed reduced APA durations or earlier step onset times. The vibration group showed 55% increase in step speed and a 39% increase in step length which were retained 6 weeks post-training. The drop group showed no stepping-performance improvements. Conclusions The acute sensitivity to the quickness-enhancing effects of stimulus exposure demonstrated in previous studies was supplanted by improved force modulation following prolonged stimulus exposure. The results suggest a potential approach to reduce the severity of start hesitation in PDs, but further study is needed to understand the relationship between short- and long-term effects of stimulus exposure.

  8. Perceptions of weight discrimination: prevalence and comparison to race and gender discrimination in America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puhl, R M; Andreyeva, T; Brownell, K D

    2008-06-01

    Limited data are available on the prevalence and patterns of body weight discrimination from representative samples. This study examined experiences of weight/height discrimination in a nationally representative sample of US adults and compared their prevalence and patterns with discrimination experiences based on race and gender. Data were from the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States, a 1995-1996 community-based survey of English-speaking adults aged 25-74 (N=2290). Reported experiences of weight/height discrimination included a variety of institutional settings and interpersonal relationships. Multivariate regression analyses were used to predict weight/height discrimination controlling for sociodemographic characteristics and body weight status. The prevalence of weight/height discrimination ranged from 5% among men to 10% among women, but these average percentages obscure the much higher risk of weight discrimination among heavier individuals (40% for adults with body mass index (BMI) of 35 and above). Younger individuals with a higher BMI had a particularly high risk of weight/height discrimination regardless of their race, education and weight status. Women were at greater risk for weight/height discrimination than men, especially women with a BMI of 30-35 who were three times more likely to report weight/height discrimination compared to male peers of a similar weight. Weight/height discrimination is prevalent in American society and is relatively close to reported rates of racial discrimination, particularly among women. Both institutional forms of weight/height discrimination (for example, in employment settings) and interpersonal mistreatment due to weight/height (for example, being called names) were common, and in some cases were even more prevalent than discrimination due to gender and race.

  9. Dissecting stimulus-response binding effects: Grouping by color separately impacts integration and retrieval processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laub, Ruth; Frings, Christian; Moeller, Birte

    2018-04-23

    In selection tasks, target and distractor features can be encoded together with the response into the same short-lived memory trace, or event file (see Hommel, 2004), leading to bindings between stimulus and response features. The repetition of a stored target or distractor feature can lead to the retrieval of the entire episode, including the response-so-called "binding effects." Binding effects due to distractor repetition are stronger for grouped than for nongrouped target and distractor stimulus configurations. Modulation of either of two mechanisms that lead to the observed binding effects might be responsible here: Grouping may influence either stimulus-response integration or stimulus-response retrieval. In the present study we investigated the influences of grouping on both mechanisms independently. In two experiments, target and distractor letters were grouped (or nongrouped) via color (dis)similarity separately during integration and retrieval. Grouping by color similarity affected integration and retrieval mechanisms independently and in different ways. Color dissimilarity enhanced distractor-based retrieval, whereas color similarity enhanced distractor integration. We concluded that stimulus grouping is relevant for binding effects, but that the mechanisms that contribute to binding effects should be carefully separated.

  10. Place of birth effects on self-reported discrimination: Variations by type of discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brondolo, Elizabeth; Rahim, Reanne; Grimaldi, Stephanie; Ashraf, Amina; Bui, Nini; Schwartz, Joseph

    2015-11-01

    Researchers have suggested that perceptions of discrimination may vary depending on place of birth and the length of time spent living in the U.S., variables related to acculturation. However, the existing literature provides a mixed picture, with data suggesting that the effects of acculturation on perceptions of discrimination vary by race and other sociodemographic factors. This study evaluated the role of place of birth (POB: defined as U.S.-born vs. foreign-born), age at immigration, and length of residence in the U.S. on self-reported discrimination in a sample of urban-dwelling Asian and Black adults (n= 1454). Analyses examined POB effects on different types of discrimination including race-related stigmatization, exclusion, threat, and workplace discrimination. Sociodemographic variables (including age, gender, employment status and education level) were tested as potential moderators of the relationship between POB and discrimination. The results revealed a significant main effect for POB on discrimination, with U.S.-born individuals reporting significantly more discrimination than foreign-born individuals, although the effect was reduced when sociodemographic variables were controlled. Across the sample, POB effects were seen only for race-related stigmatization and exclusion, not for threat and workplace discrimination. With the exception of limited effects for gender, sociodemographic variables did not moderate these effects. Younger age at immigration and greater years of residence in the U.S. were also positively associated with higher levels of perceived discrimination. These findings suggest increasing acculturation may shape the experience and perception of racial and ethnic discrimination.

  11. Place of birth effects on self-reported discrimination: Variations by type of discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brondolo, Elizabeth; Rahim, Reanne; Grimaldi, Stephanie; Ashraf, Amina; Bui, Nini; Schwartz, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Researchers have suggested that perceptions of discrimination may vary depending on place of birth and the length of time spent living in the U.S., variables related to acculturation. However, the existing literature provides a mixed picture, with data suggesting that the effects of acculturation on perceptions of discrimination vary by race and other sociodemographic factors. This study evaluated the role of place of birth (POB: defined as U.S.-born vs. foreign-born), age at immigration, and length of residence in the U.S. on self-reported discrimination in a sample of urban-dwelling Asian and Black adults (n= 1454). Analyses examined POB effects on different types of discrimination including race-related stigmatization, exclusion, threat, and workplace discrimination. Sociodemographic variables (including age, gender, employment status and education level) were tested as potential moderators of the relationship between POB and discrimination. The results revealed a significant main effect for POB on discrimination, with U.S.-born individuals reporting significantly more discrimination than foreign-born individuals, although the effect was reduced when sociodemographic variables were controlled. Across the sample, POB effects were seen only for race-related stigmatization and exclusion, not for threat and workplace discrimination. With the exception of limited effects for gender, sociodemographic variables did not moderate these effects. Younger age at immigration and greater years of residence in the U.S. were also positively associated with higher levels of perceived discrimination. These findings suggest increasing acculturation may shape the experience and perception of racial and ethnic discrimination. PMID:27647943

  12. Speaker-Sex Discrimination for Voiced and Whispered Vowels at Short Durations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, David R R

    2016-01-01

    Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel performance would improve relative to whispered vowel performance as pitch information becomes available. This pattern of results was shown for women's but not for men's voices. A whispered vowel needs to have a duration three times longer than a voiced vowel before listeners can reliably tell whether it's spoken by a man or woman (∼30 ms vs. ∼10 ms). Listeners were half as sensitive to information about speaker-sex when it is carried by whispered compared with voiced vowels.

  13. Evaluation of an Efficient Method for Training Staff to Implement Stimulus Preference Assessments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roscoe, Eileen M.; Fisher, Wayne W.

    2008-01-01

    We used a brief training procedure that incorporated feedback and role-play practice to train staff members to conduct stimulus preference assessments, and we used group-comparison methods to evaluate the effects of training. Staff members were trained to implement the multiple-stimulus-without-replacement assessment in a single session and the…

  14. Information-Processing Correlates of Computer-Assisted Word Learning by Mentally Retarded Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conners, Frances A.; Detterman, Douglas K.

    1987-01-01

    Nineteen moderately/severely retarded students (ages 9-22) completed ten 15-minute computer-assisted instruction sessions and seven basic cognitive tasks measuring simple learning, choice reaction time, relearning, probed recall, stimulus discrimination, tachictoscopic threshold, and recognition memory. Stimulus discrimination, probed recall, and…

  15. Effects of stimulus duration on gustatory evoked potentials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rotvel, Camilla Arndal; Møller, Stine; Kivisaar, Kätlin

    The objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of tastant stimulus duration on the brain response. The brain response was measured by electroencephalography (EEG) which measures neural processes with high temporal resolution and may therefore complement sensory panel assessments...

  16. Tooth pulp stimulation as an unconditioned stimulus in defensive instrumental conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jastreboff, P J; Keller, O; Zieliński, K

    1977-01-01

    In an experiment performed on five cats, stable escape and avoidance reflexes in a bar-pressing situation were established using tooth pulp electric stimulation as the unconditioned stimulus. The influence of changes in parameters of the unconditioned stimulus (current intensity, single pulse and train durations, frequency of pulses and rate of train presentations) on unconditioned and instrumental responses was analysed in three additional subjects. Among other relationships the dependence of the threshold of bar press responses on the amount of charge in a single pulse was determined.

  17. To share and be shared

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Winther, Ida Wentzel

    2018-01-01

    to another. To a certain degree, they share their everyday lives, things, places, memories, and past/future, but as the ones who move back and forth, they belong a little less in each place. This article is about children who are shared between their parent, households and siblings. They are shared...

  18. The acute effect of a plyometric stimulus on jump performance in professional rugby players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tobin, Daniel P; Delahunt, Eamonn

    2014-02-01

    Post-activation potentiation (PAP) is the elevation of motor performance to a higher level in response to a conditioning stimulus. Extensive research exists examining the PAP effect after a heavy resistance exercise. However, there is limited research examining the PAP effect after a plyometric stimulus. This study was designed to examine whether a plyometric stimulus could produce a PAP effect comparable to that typically reported with a heavy resistance protocol. Importantly, it was hypothesized that the PAP effect would exist without the same levels of acute fatigue resulting from a heavy stimulus, thus allowing improvement in performance within a short rest interval range. Twenty professional rugby players were recruited for the study. Subjects performed 2 countermovement jumps (CMJs) at baseline and at 1, 3, and 5 minutes after a plyometric stimulus consisting of 40 jumps. Two separate 1-way repeated-measures analyses of variance were conducted to compare the dependent variables CMJ height and peak force at the 4 time points. Results of the Bonferroni adjusted pairwise comparisons indicated that jump height and peak force before plyometric exercises were significantly lower than all other time points (p plyometric exercises causes a significant acute enhancement in CMJ height (p plyometric series induced an improvement in CMJ height comparable to that reported elsewhere after a heavy lifting stimulus but without the need for a prolonged rest interval. Performing repeated series of plyometric jumps appears to be an efficient method of taking advantage of the PAP phenomenon, thus possibly eliminating the need for a complex training protocol.

  19. Emotional Picture and Word Processing: An fMRI Study on Effects of Stimulus Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlochtermeier, Lorna H.; Kuchinke, Lars; Pehrs, Corinna; Urton, Karolina; Kappelhoff, Hermann; Jacobs, Arthur M.

    2013-01-01

    Neuroscientific investigations regarding aspects of emotional experiences usually focus on one stimulus modality (e.g., pictorial or verbal). Similarities and differences in the processing between the different modalities have rarely been studied directly. The comparison of verbal and pictorial emotional stimuli often reveals a processing advantage of emotional pictures in terms of larger or more pronounced emotion effects evoked by pictorial stimuli. In this study, we examined whether this picture advantage refers to general processing differences or whether it might partly be attributed to differences in visual complexity between pictures and words. We first developed a new stimulus database comprising valence and arousal ratings for more than 200 concrete objects representable in different modalities including different levels of complexity: words, phrases, pictograms, and photographs. Using fMRI we then studied the neural correlates of the processing of these emotional stimuli in a valence judgment task, in which the stimulus material was controlled for differences in emotional arousal. No superiority for the pictorial stimuli was found in terms of emotional information processing with differences between modalities being revealed mainly in perceptual processing regions. While visual complexity might partly account for previously found differences in emotional stimulus processing, the main existing processing differences are probably due to enhanced processing in modality specific perceptual regions. We would suggest that both pictures and words elicit emotional responses with no general superiority for either stimulus modality, while emotional responses to pictures are modulated by perceptual stimulus features, such as picture complexity. PMID:23409009

  20. Socially-Tolerable Discrimination

    OpenAIRE

    Amegashie, J. Atsu

    2008-01-01

    History is replete with overt discrimination on the basis of race, gender, age, citizenship, ethnicity, marital status, academic performance, health status, volume of market transactions, religion, sexual orientation, etc. However, these forms of discrimination are not equally tolerable. For example, discrimination based on immutable or prohibitively unalterable characteristics such as race, gender, or ethnicity is much less acceptable. Why? I develop a simple rent-seeking model of conflict w...

  1. Pyff---A Pythonic Framework for Feedback Applications and Stimulus Presentation in Neuroscience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bastian Venthur

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces Pyff, the Pythonic Feedback Framework for feedbackapplications and stimulus presentation. Pyff provides a platform independentframework that allows users to develop and run neuroscientific experiments inthe programming language Python. Existing solutions have mostly beenimplemented in C++, which makes for a rather tedious programming task fornon-computer-scientists, or in Matlab, which is not well suited for moreadvanced visual or auditory applications. Pyff was designed to makeexperimental paradigms (i.e. feedback and stimulus applications easilyprogrammable. It includes base classes for various types of common feedbacksand stimuli as well as useful libraries for external hardware such aseyetrackers. Pyff is also equipped with a steadily growing set of ready-to-usefeedbacks and stimuli. It can be used as a standalone application, for instanceproviding stimulus presentation in psychophysics experiments, or within aclosed loop such as in biofeedback or brain-computer interfacing experiments.Pyff communicates with other systems via a standardized communication protocoland is therefore suitable to be used with any system that may be adapted tosend its data in the specified format. Having such a general, open sourceframework will help foster a fruitful exchange of experimental paradigmsbetween research groups. In particular, it will decrease the need ofreprogramming standard paradigms, ease the reproducibility of publishedresults, and naturally entail some standardization of stimulus presentation.

  2. Measuring voluntary quadriceps activation: Effect of visual feedback and stimulus delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luc, Brittney A; Harkey, Matthew H; Arguelles, Gabrielle D; Blackburn, J Troy; Ryan, Eric D; Pietrosimone, Brian

    2016-02-01

    Quadriceps voluntary activation, assessed via the superimposed burst technique, has been extensively studied in a variety of populations as a measure of quadriceps function. However, a variety of stimulus delivery techniques have been employed, which may influence the level of voluntary activation as calculated via the central activation ratio (CAR). The purpose was to determine the effect of visual feedback, stimulus delivery, and perceived discomfort on maximal voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) peak torque and the CAR. Quadriceps CAR was assessed in 14 individuals on two days using three stimulus delivery methods; (1) manual without visual feedback, (2) manual with visual feedback, and (3) automated with visual feedback. MVIC peak torque and the CAR were not different between the automated with visual feedback (MVIC=3.25, SE=0.14Nm/kg; CAR=88.63, SE=1.75%) and manual with visual feedback (MVIC=3.26, SE=0.13Nm/kg, P=0.859; CAR=89.06, SE=1.70%, P=0.39) stimulus delivery methods. MVIC (2.99, SE=0.12Nm/kg) and CAR (85.32, SE=2.10%) were significantly lower using manual without visual feedback compared to manual with visual feedback and automated with visual feedback (CAR P<0.001; MVIC P<0.001). Perceived discomfort was lower in the second session (P<0.05). Utilizing visual feedback ensures participant MVIC, and may provide a more accurate assessment of quadriceps voluntary activation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Rewiring the gustatory system: specificity between nerve and taste bud field is critical for normal salt discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spector, Alan C; Blonde, Ginger; Garcea, Mircea; Jiang, Enshe

    2010-01-15

    Forty years have passed since it was demonstrated that a cross-regenerated gustatory nerve in the rat tongue adopts the stimulus-response properties of the taste receptor field it cross-reinnervates. Nevertheless, the functional consequences of channeling peripheral taste signals through inappropriate central circuits remain relatively unexplored. Here we tested whether histologically confirmed cross-regeneration of the chorda tympani nerve (CT) into the posterior tongue in the absence of the glossopharyngeal nerve (GL) (CT-PostTongue) or cross-regeneration of the GL into the anterior tongue in the absence of the CT (GL-AntTongue) would maintain presurgically trained performance in an operant NaCl vs. KCl taste discrimination task in rats. Before surgery all groups were averaging over 90% accuracy. Oral amiloride treatment dropped performance to virtually chance levels. During the first week after surgery, sham-operated rats, GL-transected rats, and rats with regenerated CTs displayed highly competent discrimination performance. In contrast, CT-transected rats were severely impaired (59% accuracy). Both the CT-PostTongue and the GL-AntTongue groups were impaired to a similar degree as CT-transected rats. These initially impaired groups improved their performance over the weeks of postsurgical testing, suggesting that the rats were capable of relearning the task with discriminable signals in the remaining taste nerves. This relearned performance was dependent on input from amiloride-sensitive receptors likely in the palate. Overall, these results suggest that normal competence in a salt discrimination task is dependent on the taste receptor field origin of the input as well as the specific nerve transmitting the signals to its associated circuits in the brain. Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Exploring Discrimination and Mental Health Disparities Faced By Black Sexual Minority Women Using a Minority Stress Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calabrese, Sarah K.; Meyer, Ilan H.; Overstreet, Nicole M.; Haile, Rahwa; Hansen, Nathan B.

    2015-01-01

    Black sexual minority women are triply marginalized due to their race, gender, and sexual orientation. We compared three dimensions of discrimination—frequency (regularity of occurrences), scope (number of types of discriminatory acts experienced), and number of bases (number of social statuses to which discrimination was attributed)—and self-reported mental health (depressive symptoms, psychological well-being, and social well-being) between 64 Black sexual minority women and each of two groups sharing two of three marginalized statuses: (a) 67 White sexual minority women and (b) 67 Black sexual minority men. Black sexual minority women reported greater discrimination frequency, scope, and number of bases and poorer psychological and social well-being than White sexual minority women and more discrimination bases, a higher level of depressive symptoms, and poorer social well-being than Black sexual minority men. We then tested and contrasted dimensions of discrimination as mediators between social status (race or gender) and mental health outcomes. Discrimination frequency and scope mediated the association between race and mental health, with a stronger effect via frequency among sexual minority women. Number of discrimination bases mediated the association between gender and mental health among Black sexual minorities. Future research and clinical practice would benefit from considering Black sexual minority women's mental health in a multidimensional minority stress context. PMID:26424904

  5. Racial/Ethnic Workplace Discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chavez, Laura J.; Ornelas, India J.; Lyles, Courtney R.; Williams, Emily C.

    2014-01-01

    Background Experiences of discrimination are associated with tobacco and alcohol use, and work is a common setting where individuals experience racial/ethnic discrimination. Few studies have evaluated the association between workplace discrimination and these behaviors, and none have described associations across race/ethnicity. Purpose To examine the association between workplace discrimination and tobacco and alcohol use in a large, multistate sample of U.S. adult respondents to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey Reactions to Race Module (2004–2010). Methods Multivariable logistic regression analyses evaluated cross-sectional associations between self-reported workplace discrimination and tobacco (current and daily smoking) and alcohol use (any and heavy use, and binge drinking) among all participants and stratified by race/ethnicity, adjusting for relevant covariates. Data were analyzed in 2013. Results Among respondents, 70,080 completed the workplace discrimination measure. Discrimination was more common among black non-Hispanic (21%), Hispanic (12%), and other race respondents (11%) than white non-Hispanics (4%) (pdiscrimination was associated with current smoking (risk ratio [RR]=1.32, 95% CI=1.19, 1.47), daily smoking (RR=1.41, 95% CI=1.24, 1.61), and heavy drinking (RR=1.11, 95% CI=1.01, 1.22), but not binge or any drinking. Among Hispanics, workplace discrimination was associated with increased heavy and binge drinking, but not any alcohol use or smoking. Workplace discrimination among black non-Hispanics and white Non-Hispanics was associated with increased current and daily smoking, but not alcohol outcomes. Conclusions Workplace discrimination is common, associated with smoking and alcohol use, and merits further policy attention given the impact of these behaviors on morbidity and mortality. PMID:25441232

  6. Neutron-gamma discrimination in mixed field by pulse shape discriminator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharghi Ido, A.; Shahriari, M.; Etaati, G. R.

    2009-01-01

    In this study, a pulse shape discriminator, incorporating zero-crossing method has been developed. The separate measurements with 241 Am-Be and 252 Cf sources undertaken by BC501A liquid have shown that the purposed and the common-used pulse shape discriminator's are in good agreement. The improved characteristics of the presented pulse shape discriminator are FOM=1.36 at a threshold of 60 ke Vee and 1.5μsec dead time which allows the count rates up to 50 k Hz

  7. Compound Stimulus Extinction Reduces Spontaneous Recovery in Humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coelho, Cesar A. O.; Dunsmoor, Joseph E.; Phelps, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    Fear-related behaviors are prone to relapse following extinction. We tested in humans a compound extinction design ("deepened extinction") shown in animal studies to reduce post-extinction fear recovery. Adult subjects underwent fear conditioning to a visual and an auditory conditioned stimulus (CSA and CSB, respectively) separately…

  8. Prefrontal cortical GABA transmission modulates discrimination and latent inhibition of conditioned fear: relevance for schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piantadosi, Patrick T; Floresco, Stan B

    2014-09-01

    Inhibitory gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmission within the prefrontal cortex (PFC) regulates numerous functions, and perturbations in GABAergic transmission within this region have been proposed to contribute to some of the cognitive and behavioral abnormalities associated with disorders such as schizophrenia. These abnormalities include deficits in emotional regulation and aberrant attributions of affective salience. Yet, how PFC GABA regulates these types of emotional processes are unclear. To address this issue, we investigated the contribution of PFC GABA transmission to different aspects of Pavlovian emotional learning in rats using translational discriminative fear conditioning and latent inhibition (LI) assays. Reducing prelimbic PFC GABAA transmission via infusions of the antagonist bicuculline before the acquisition or expression of fear conditioning eliminated the ability to discriminate between an aversive conditioned stimulus (CS+) paired with footshock vs a neutral CS-, resembling similar deficits observed in schizophrenic patients. In a separate experiment, blockade of PFC GABAA receptors before CS preexposure (PE) and conditioning did not affect subsequent expression of LI, but did enhance fear in rats that were not preexposed to the CS. In contrast, PFC GABA-blockade before a fear expression test disrupted the recall of learned irrelevance and abolished LI. These data suggest that normal PFC GABA transmission is critical for regulating and mitigating multiple aspects of aversive learning, including discrimination between fear vs safety signals and recall of information about the irrelevance of stimuli. Furthermore, they suggest that similar deficits in emotional regulation observed in schizophrenia may be driven in part by deficient PFC GABA activity.

  9. Two Pathways to Stimulus Encoding in Category Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Tyler; Love, Bradley C.; Maddox, W. Todd

    2008-01-01

    Category learning theorists tacitly assume that stimuli are encoded by a single pathway. Motivated by theories of object recognition, we evaluate a dual-pathway account of stimulus encoding. The part-based pathway establishes mappings between sensory input and symbols that encode discrete stimulus features, whereas the image-based pathway applies holistic templates to sensory input. Our experiments use rule-plus-exception structures in which one exception item in each category violates a salient regularity and must be distinguished from other items. In Experiment 1, we find that discrete representations are crucial for recognition of exceptions following brief training. Experiments 2 and 3 involve multi-session training regimens designed to encourage either part or image-based encoding. We find that both pathways are able to support exception encoding, but have unique characteristics. We speculate that one advantage of the part-based pathway is the ability to generalize across domains, whereas the image-based pathway provides faster and more effortless recognition. PMID:19460948

  10. Conditioned pain modulation is affected by occlusion cuff conditioning stimulus intensity, but not duration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, A; Pedler, A

    2018-01-01

    Various conditioned pain modulation (CPM) methodologies have been used to investigate diffuse noxious inhibitory control pain mechanisms in healthy and clinical populations. Occlusion cuff parameters have been poorly studied. We aimed to investigate whether occlusion cuff intensity and/or duration influenced CPM magnitudes. We also investigated the role of physical activity levels on CPM magnitude. Two studies were performed to investigate the role of intensity and duration of occlusion cuff conditioning stimulus on test stimulus (tibialis anterior pressure pain thresholds). In Study 1, conditioning stimulus intensity of 2/10 or 5/10 (duration CPM magnitude. In Study 1, 27 healthy volunteers (mean ± SD: 24.9 years (±4.5); eight female) demonstrated that an occlusion cuff applied to the upper arm eliciting 5/10 local pain resulted in a significant (mean ± SD: 17% ± 46%) increase in CPM magnitude, when compared to 2/10 intensity (-3% ± 38%, p = 0.026), whereas in Study 2, 25 healthy volunteers (22.5 years (±2.7); 13 female) demonstrated that 3 min of 2/10 CS intensity did not result in a significant change in CPM (p = 0.21). There was no significant relationship between physical activity levels and CPM in either study (p > 0.22). This study demonstrated that an occlusion cuff of 5/10 conditioning stimulus intensity, when compared to 2/10, significantly increased CPM magnitude. Maintaining 2/10 conditioning stimulus for 3 min did not increase CPM magnitude. Dysfunctional conditioned pain modulation (CPM) has been associated with poor health outcomes. Various factors can influence CPM outcomes. The role of occlusion cuff conditioning stimulus intensity and duration has not been previously investigated. Intensity (5/10), but not duration of lower intensity (2/10) conditioning stimulus, affects CPM magnitude. © 2017 European Pain Federation - EFIC®.

  11. A dissociation of dorso-lateral striatum and amygdala function on the same stimulus-response habit task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, R J; Hong, N S

    2004-01-01

    This experiment tested the idea that the amygdala-based learning and memory system covertly acquires a stimulus-reward (stimulus-outcome) association during acquisition of a stimulus-response (S-R) habit task developed for the eight-arm radial maze. Groups of rats were given dorso-lateral striatal or amygdala lesions and then trained on the S-R habit task on the eight-arm radial maze. Rats with neurotoxic damage to the dorso-lateral striatum were severely impaired on the acquisition of the S-R habit task but showed a conditioned-cue preference for the stimulus reinforced during S-R habit training. Rats with neurotoxic damage to the amygdala were able to acquire the S-R habit task but did not show a conditioned-cue preference for the stimulus reinforced during S-R habit training. This pattern of results represents a dissociation of learning and memory functions of the dorsal striatum and amygdala on the same task.

  12. Response competition and response inhibition during different choice-discrimination tasks: evidence from ERP measured inside MRI scanner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Rosa, Javier J; Inuggi, Alberto; Blasi, Valeria; Cursi, Marco; Annovazzi, Pietro; Comi, Giancarlo; Falini, Andrea; Leocani, Letizia

    2013-07-01

    We investigated the neural correlates underlying response inhibition and conflict detection processes using ERPs and source localization analyses simultaneously acquired during fMRI scanning. ERPs were elicited by a simple reaction time task (SRT), a Go/NoGo task, and a Stroop-like task (CST). The cognitive conflict was thus manipulated in order to probe the degree to which information processing is shared across cognitive systems. We proposed to dissociate inhibition and interference conflict effects on brain activity by using identical Stroop-like congruent/incongruent stimuli in all three task contexts and while varying the response required. NoGo-incongruent trials showed a larger N2 and enhanced activations of rostral anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and pre-supplementary motor area, whereas Go-congruent trials showed a larger P3 and increased parietal activations. Congruent and incongruent conditions of the CST task also elicited similar N2, P3 and late negativity (LN) ERPs, though CST-incongruent trials revealed a larger LN and enhanced prefrontal and ACC activations. Considering the stimulus probability and experimental manipulation of our study, current findings suggest that NoGo N2 and frontal NoGo P3 appear to be more associated to response inhibition rather than a specific conflict monitoring, whereas occipito-parietal P3 of Go and CST conditions may be more linked to a planned response competition between the prepared and required response. LN, however, appears to be related to higher level conflict monitoring associated with response choice-discrimination but not when the presence of cognitive conflict is associated with response inhibition. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  13. Stimulus meanings alter illusory self-motion (vection)--experimental examination of the train illusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seno, Takeharu; Fukuda, Haruaki

    2012-01-01

    Over the last 100 years, numerous studies have examined the effective visual stimulus properties for inducing illusory self-motion (known as vection). This vection is often experienced more strongly in daily life than under controlled experimental conditions. One well-known example of vection in real life is the so-called 'train illusion'. In the present study, we showed that this train illusion can also be generated in the laboratory using virtual computer graphics-based motion stimuli. We also demonstrated that this vection can be modified by altering the meaning of the visual stimuli (i.e., top down effects). Importantly, we show that the semantic meaning of a stimulus can inhibit or facilitate vection, even when there is no physical change to the stimulus.

  14. Magnetic field discrimination, learning, and memory in the yellow stingray (Urobatis jamaicensis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newton, Kyle C; Kajiura, Stephen M

    2017-07-01

    Elasmobranch fishes (sharks, skates, and rays) have been hypothesized to use the geomagnetic field as a cue for orienting and navigating across a wide range of spatial scales. Magnetoreception has been demonstrated in many invertebrate and vertebrate taxa, including elasmobranchs, but this sensory modality and the cognitive abilities of cartilaginous fishes are poorly studied. Wild caught yellow stingrays, Urobatis jamaicensis (N = 8), underwent conditioning to associate a magnetic stimulus with a food reward in order to elicit foraging behaviors. Behavioral conditioning consisted of burying magnets and non-magnetic controls at random locations within a test arena and feeding stingrays as they passed over the hidden magnets. The location of the magnets and controls was changed for each trial, and all confounding sensory cues were eliminated. The stingrays learned to discriminate the magnetic stimuli within a mean of 12.6 ± 0.7 SE training sessions of four trials per session. Memory probes were conducted at intervals between 90 and 180 days post-learning criterion, and six of eight stingrays completed the probes with a ≥75% success rate and minimum latency to complete the task. These results show the fastest rate of learning and longest memory window for any batoid (skate or ray) to date. This study demonstrates that yellow stingrays, and possibly other elasmobranchs, can use a magnetic stimulus as a geographic marker for the location of resources and is an important step toward understanding whether these fishes use geomagnetic cues during spatial navigation tasks in the natural environment.

  15. Efficacy of a new charge-balanced biphasic electrical stimulus in the isolated sciatic nerve and the hippocampal slice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cappaert, N.L.M.; Ramekers, D.; Martens, H.C.F.; Wadman, W.J.

    2013-01-01

    Most deep brain stimulators apply rectangular monophasic voltage pulses. By modifying the stimulus shape, it is possible to optimize stimulus efficacy and find the best compromise between clinical effect, minimal side effects and power consumption of the stimulus generator. In this study, we

  16. DISCRIMINATION OF WOMEN IN THE LABOUR MARKET OF SR AND MODELS OF DISCRIMINATION

    OpenAIRE

    Ján Vravec; Radovan Baèík

    2012-01-01

    IThe paper deals with the problem of women’s discrimination in the labour market. Significant differences, among women and men in the labour market, are especially in unemployment rate in reward system, and high horizontal and vertical segregation of women. The aspects of discrimination arise despite of existing legislation, which gender discrimination strictly prohibits. An analysis of arguments, consequences and models of women’s