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Sample records for stimulus features task

  1. Feature-based attentional modulation increases with stimulus separation in divided-attention tasks.

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    Sally, Sharon L; Vidnyánsky, Zoltán; Papathomas, Thomas V

    2009-01-01

    Attention modifies our visual experience by selecting certain aspects of a scene for further processing. It is therefore important to understand factors that govern the deployment of selective attention over the visual field. Both location and feature-specific mechanisms of attention have been identified and their modulatory effects can interact at a neural level (Treue and Martinez-Trujillo, 1999). The effects of spatial parameters on feature-based attentional modulation were examined for the feature dimensions of orientation, motion and color using three divided-attention tasks. Subjects performed concurrent discriminations of two briefly presented targets (Gabor patches) to the left and right of a central fixation point at eccentricities of +/-2.5 degrees , 5 degrees , 10 degrees and 15 degrees in the horizontal plane. Gabors were size-scaled to maintain consistent single-task performance across eccentricities. For all feature dimensions, the data show a linear increase in the attentional effects with target separation. In a control experiment, Gabors were presented on an isoeccentric viewing arc at 10 degrees and 15 degrees at the closest spatial separation (+/-2.5 degrees ) of the main experiment. Under these conditions, the effects of feature-based attentional effects were largely eliminated. Our results are consistent with the hypothesis that feature-based attention prioritizes the processing of attended features. Feature-based attentional mechanisms may have helped direct the attentional focus to the appropriate target locations at greater separations, whereas similar assistance may not have been necessary at closer target spacings. The results of the present study specify conditions under which dual-task performance benefits from sharing similar target features and may therefore help elucidate the processes by which feature-based attention operates.

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

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    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.

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

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    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

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

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    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. Accessory stimulus modulates executive function during stepping task.

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    Watanabe, Tatsunori; Koyama, Soichiro; Tanabe, Shigeo; Nojima, Ippei

    2015-07-01

    When multiple sensory modalities are simultaneously presented, reaction time can be reduced while interference enlarges. The purpose of this research was to examine the effects of task-irrelevant acoustic accessory stimuli simultaneously presented with visual imperative stimuli on executive function during stepping. Executive functions were assessed by analyzing temporal events and errors in the initial weight transfer of the postural responses prior to a step (anticipatory postural adjustment errors). Eleven healthy young adults stepped forward in response to a visual stimulus. We applied a choice reaction time task and the Simon task, which consisted of congruent and incongruent conditions. Accessory stimuli were randomly presented with the visual stimuli. Compared with trials without accessory stimuli, the anticipatory postural adjustment error rates were higher in trials with accessory stimuli in the incongruent condition and the reaction times were shorter in trials with accessory stimuli in all the task conditions. Analyses after division of trials according to whether anticipatory postural adjustment error occurred or not revealed that the reaction times of trials with anticipatory postural adjustment errors were reduced more than those of trials without anticipatory postural adjustment errors in the incongruent condition. These results suggest that accessory stimuli modulate the initial motor programming of stepping by lowering decision threshold and exclusively under spatial incompatibility facilitate automatic response activation. The present findings advance the knowledge of intersensory judgment processes during stepping and may aid in the development of intervention and evaluation tools for individuals at risk of falls. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

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

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    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.

  7. Dynamic binding of visual features by neuronal/stimulus synchrony.

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    Iwabuchi, A

    1998-05-01

    When people see a visual scene, certain parts of the visual scene are treated as belonging together and we regard them as a perceptual unit, which is called a "figure". People focus on figures, and the remaining parts of the scene are disregarded as "ground". In Gestalt psychology this process is called "figure-ground segregation". According to current perceptual psychology, a figure is formed by binding various visual features in a scene, and developments in neuroscience have revealed that there are many feature-encoding neurons, which respond to such features specifically. It is not known, however, how the brain binds different features of an object into a coherent visual object representation. Recently, the theory of binding by neuronal synchrony, which argues that feature binding is dynamically mediated by neuronal synchrony of feature-encoding neurons, has been proposed. This review article portrays the problem of figure-ground segregation and features binding, summarizes neurophysiological and psychophysical experiments and theory relevant to feature binding by neuronal/stimulus synchrony, and suggests possible directions for future research on this topic.

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

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    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.

  9. The influence of negative stimulus features on conflict adaption:Evidence from fluency of processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia eFritz

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive control enables adaptive behavior in a dynamically changing environment. In this context, one prominent adaptation effect is the sequential conflict adjustment, i.e. the observation of reduced response interference on trials following conflict trials. Increasing evidence suggests that such response conflicts are registered as aversive signals. So far, however, the functional role of this aversive signal for conflict adaptation to occur has not been put to test directly. In two experiments, the affective valence of conflict stimuli was manipulated by fluency of processing (stimulus contrast. Experiment 1 used a flanker interference task, Experiment 2 a color-word Stroop task. In both experiments, conflict adaptation effects were only present in fluent, but absent in disfluent trials. Results thus speak against the simple idea that any aversive stimulus feature is suited to promote specific conflict adjustments. Two alternative but not mutually exclusive accounts, namely resource competition and adaptation-by-motivation, will be discussed.

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

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    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.

  11. 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...

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

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    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.

  13. Speed and lateral inhibition of stimulus processing contribute to individual differences in Stroop-task performance

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    Marnix eNaber

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The Stroop task is a popular neuropsychological test that measures executive control. Strong Stroop interference is commonly interpreted in neuropsychology as a diagnostic marker of an impairment in executive control, possibly reflecting executive dysfunction. However, popular models of the Stroop task indicate that several other aspects of colour and word processing may also account for individual differences in the Stroop task, independent of executive control. Here we use new approaches to investigate the degree to which individual differences in Stroop interference correlate with the relative processing speed of word and colour stimuli, and the lateral inhibition between visual stimuli. We conducted an electrophysiological and behavioural experiment to measure (1 how quickly an individual’s brain processes words and colours presented in isolation (P3 latency, and (2 the strength of an individual’s lateral inhibition between visual representations with a visual illusion. Both measures explained at least 40% of the variance in Stroop interference across individuals. As these measures were obtained in contexts not requiring any executive control, we conclude that the Stroop effect also measures an individual’s pre-set way of processing visual features such as words and colours. This study highlights the important contributions of stimulus processing speed and lateral inhibition to individual differences in Stroop interference, and challenges the general view that the Stroop task primarily assesses executive control.

  14. Speed and Lateral Inhibition of Stimulus Processing Contribute to Individual Differences in Stroop-Task Performance.

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    Naber, Marnix; Vedder, Anneke; Brown, Stephen B R E; Nieuwenhuis, Sander

    2016-01-01

    The Stroop task is a popular neuropsychological test that measures executive control. Strong Stroop interference is commonly interpreted in neuropsychology as a diagnostic marker of impairment in executive control, possibly reflecting executive dysfunction. However, popular models of the Stroop task indicate that several other aspects of color and word processing may also account for individual differences in the Stroop task, independent of executive control. Here we use new approaches to investigate the degree to which individual differences in Stroop interference correlate with the relative processing speed of word and color stimuli, and the lateral inhibition between visual stimuli. We conducted an electrophysiological and behavioral experiment to measure (1) how quickly an individual's brain processes words and colors presented in isolation (P3 latency), and (2) the strength of an individual's lateral inhibition between visual representations with a visual illusion. Both measures explained at least 40% of the variance in Stroop interference across individuals. As these measures were obtained in contexts not requiring any executive control, we conclude that the Stroop effect also measures an individual's pre-set way of processing visual features such as words and colors. This study highlights the important contributions of stimulus processing speed and lateral inhibition to individual differences in Stroop interference, and challenges the general view that the Stroop task primarily assesses executive control.

  15. Dissociating stimulus-stimulus and response-response effects in the Stroop task

    OpenAIRE

    Schmidt, James; Cheesman, J

    2005-01-01

    The separate semantic and response competition interactions between colour and word processing in a manual Stroop task were evaluated by comparing three trial types. Identity trials are both semantically compatible and response compatible (e.g., BLUE in the colour blue), different response trials are both semantically incompatible and response incompatible (e.g., BLUE in the colour green, where blue and green have different response keys), and same response trials are semantically incompatibl...

  16. Relative versus Absolute Stimulus Control in the Temporal Bisection Task

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    de Carvalho, Marilia Pinhiero; Machado, Armando

    2012-01-01

    When subjects learn to associate two sample durations with two comparison keys, do they learn to associate the keys with the short and long samples (relational hypothesis), or with the specific sample durations (absolute hypothesis)? We exposed 16 pigeons to an ABA design in which phases A and B corresponded to tasks using samples of 1 s and 4 s,…

  17. Task- and age-dependent effects of visual stimulus properties on children's explicit numerosity judgments.

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    Defever, Emmy; Reynvoet, Bert; Gebuis, Titia

    2013-10-01

    Researchers investigating numerosity processing manipulate the visual stimulus properties (e.g., surface). This is done to control for the confound between numerosity and its visual properties and should allow the examination of pure number processes. Nevertheless, several studies have shown that, despite different visual controls, visual cues remained to exert their influence on numerosity judgments. This study, therefore, investigated whether the impact of the visual stimulus manipulations on numerosity judgments is dependent on the task at hand (comparison task vs. same-different task) and whether this impact changes throughout development. In addition, we examined whether the influence of visual stimulus manipulations on numerosity judgments plays a role in the relation between performance on numerosity tasks and mathematics achievement. Our findings confirmed that the visual stimulus manipulations affect numerosity judgments; more important, we found that these influences changed with increasing age and differed between the comparison and the same-different tasks. Consequently, direct comparisons between numerosity studies using different tasks and age groups are difficult. No meaningful relationship between the performance on the comparison and same-different tasks and mathematics achievement was found in typically developing children, nor did we find consistent differences between children with and without mathematical learning disability (MLD). Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

  19. How Stimulus and Task Complexity Affect Monitoring in High-Functioning Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koolen, S.; Vissers, C.T.W.M.; Egger, J.I.M.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined whether individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are able to update and monitor working memory representations of visual input, and whether performance is influenced by stimulus and task complexity. 15 high-functioning adults with ASD and 15 controls were asked to

  20. Influence on Simon and SNARC Effects of a Nonspatial Stimulus-Response Mapping: Between-Task Logical Recoding

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    Treccani, Barbara; Milanese, Nadia; Umilta, Carlo

    2010-01-01

    In 4 experiments, we intermixed trials in which the stimulus color was relevant with trials where participants had to judge the stimulus shape or parity and found that the logical-recoding rule (Hedge & Marsh, 1975) applied to the relevant dimension in a task can generalize to the irrelevant dimension of the other task. The mapping…

  1. Shielding voices: The modulation of binding processes between voice features and response features by task representations.

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    Bogon, Johanna; Eisenbarth, Hedwig; Landgraf, Steffen; Dreisbach, Gesine

    2017-09-01

    Vocal events offer not only semantic-linguistic content but also information about the identity and the emotional-motivational state of the speaker. Furthermore, most vocal events have implications for our actions and therefore include action-related features. But the relevance and irrelevance of vocal features varies from task to task. The present study investigates binding processes for perceptual and action-related features of spoken words and their modulation by the task representation of the listener. Participants reacted with two response keys to eight different words spoken by a male or a female voice (Experiment 1) or spoken by an angry or neutral male voice (Experiment 2). There were two instruction conditions: half of participants learned eight stimulus-response mappings by rote (SR), and half of participants applied a binary task rule (TR). In both experiments, SR instructed participants showed clear evidence for binding processes between voice and response features indicated by an interaction between the irrelevant voice feature and the response. By contrast, as indicated by a three-way interaction with instruction, no such binding was found in the TR instructed group. These results are suggestive of binding and shielding as two adaptive mechanisms that ensure successful communication and action in a dynamic social environment.

  2. The effect of stimulus duration and motor response in hemispatial neglect during a visual search task.

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    Laura M Jelsone-Swain

    Full Text Available Patients with hemispatial neglect exhibit a myriad of profound deficits. A hallmark of this syndrome is the patients' absence of awareness of items located in their contralesional space. Many studies, however, have demonstrated that neglect patients exhibit some level of processing of these neglected items. It has been suggested that unconscious processing of neglected information may manifest as a fast denial. This theory of fast denial proposes that neglected stimuli are detected in the same way as non-neglected stimuli, but without overt awareness. We evaluated the fast denial theory by conducting two separate visual search task experiments, each differing by the duration of stimulus presentation. Specifically, in Experiment 1 each stimulus remained in the participants' visual field until a response was made. In Experiment 2 each stimulus was presented for only a brief duration. We further evaluated the fast denial theory by comparing verbal to motor task responses in each experiment. Overall, our results from both experiments and tasks showed no evidence for the presence of implicit knowledge of neglected stimuli. Instead, patients with neglect responded the same when they neglected stimuli as when they correctly reported stimulus absence. These findings thus cast doubt on the concept of the fast denial theory and its consequent implications for non-conscious processing. Importantly, our study demonstrated that the only behavior affected was during conscious detection of ipsilesional stimuli. Specifically, patients were slower to detect stimuli in Experiment 1 compared to Experiment 2, suggesting a duration effect occurred during conscious processing of information. Additionally, reaction time and accuracy were similar when reporting verbally versus motorically. These results provide new insights into the perceptual deficits associated with neglect and further support other work that falsifies the fast denial account of non

  3. Attention improves encoding of task-relevant features in the human visual cortex

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    Jehee, Janneke F.M.; Brady, Devin K.; Tong, Frank

    2011-01-01

    When spatial attention is directed towards a particular stimulus, increased activity is commonly observed in corresponding locations of the visual cortex. Does this attentional increase in activity indicate improved processing of all features contained within the attended stimulus, or might spatial attention selectively enhance the features relevant to the observer’s task? We used fMRI decoding methods to measure the strength of orientation-selective activity patterns in the human visual cortex while subjects performed either an orientation or contrast discrimination task, involving one of two laterally presented gratings. Greater overall BOLD activation with spatial attention was observed in areas V1-V4 for both tasks. However, multivariate pattern analysis revealed that orientation-selective responses were enhanced by attention only when orientation was the task-relevant feature, and not when the grating’s contrast had to be attended. In a second experiment, observers discriminated the orientation or color of a specific lateral grating. Here, orientation-selective responses were enhanced in both tasks but color-selective responses were enhanced only when color was task-relevant. In both experiments, task-specific enhancement of feature-selective activity was not confined to the attended stimulus location, but instead spread to other locations in the visual field, suggesting the concurrent involvement of a global feature-based attentional mechanism. These results suggest that attention can be remarkably selective in its ability to enhance particular task-relevant features, and further reveal that increases in overall BOLD amplitude are not necessarily accompanied by improved processing of stimulus information. PMID:21632942

  4. Prior task experience and comparable stimulus exposure nullify focal and nonfocal prospective memory retrieval differences.

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    Hicks, Jason L; Franks, Bryan A; Spitler, Samantha N

    2017-10-01

    We explored the nature of focal versus nonfocal event-based prospective memory retrieval. In the context of a lexical decision task, people received an intention to respond to a single word (focal) in one condition and to a category label (nonfocal) for the other condition. Participants experienced both conditions, and their order was manipulated. The focal instruction condition was a single word presented multiple times. In Experiment 1, the stimuli in the nonfocal condition were different exemplars from a category, each presented once. In the nonfocal condition retrieval was poorer and reaction times were slower during the ongoing task as compared to the focal condition, replicating prior findings. In Experiment 2, the stimulus in the nonfocal condition was a single category exemplar repeated multiple times. When this single-exemplar nonfocal condition followed in time the single-item focal condition, focal versus nonfocal performance was virtually indistinguishable. These results demonstrate that people can modify their stimulus processing and expectations in event-based prospective memory tasks based on experience with the nature of prospective cues and with the ongoing task.

  5. Stimulus encoding and feature extraction by multiple pyramidal cells in the hindbrain of weakly electric fish

    OpenAIRE

    Krahe, Rüdiger; Kreiman, Gabriel; Gabbiani, Fabrizio; Koch, Christof; Metzner, Walter

    2002-01-01

    Neighboring cells in topographical sensory maps may transmit similar information to the next higher level of processing. How information transmission by groups of nearby neurons compares with the performance of single cells is a very important question for understanding the functioning of the nervous system. To tackle this problem, we quantified stimulus-encoding and feature extraction performance by pairs of simultaneously recorded electrosensory pyramidal cells in the hindbrain of weakly el...

  6. The fate of task-irrelevant visual motion: perceptual load versus feature-based attention.

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    Taya, Shuichiro; Adams, Wendy J; Graf, Erich W; Lavie, Nilli

    2009-11-18

    We tested contrasting predictions derived from perceptual load theory and from recent feature-based selection accounts. Observers viewed moving, colored stimuli and performed low or high load tasks associated with one stimulus feature, either color or motion. The resultant motion aftereffect (MAE) was used to evaluate attentional allocation. We found that task-irrelevant visual features received less attention than co-localized task-relevant features of the same objects. Moreover, when color and motion features were co-localized yet perceived to belong to two distinct surfaces, feature-based selection was further increased at the expense of object-based co-selection. Load theory predicts that the MAE for task-irrelevant motion would be reduced with a higher load color task. However, this was not seen for co-localized features; perceptual load only modulated the MAE for task-irrelevant motion when this was spatially separated from the attended color location. Our results suggest that perceptual load effects are mediated by spatial selection and do not generalize to the feature domain. Feature-based selection operates to suppress processing of task-irrelevant, co-localized features, irrespective of perceptual load.

  7. Análise dos padrões dos movimentos oculares em tarefas de busca visual: efeito da familiaridade e das características físicas do estímulo Analysis of the eye movement patterns in visual search tasks: effect of familiarity and stimulus features

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    Elizeu Coutinho de Macedo

    2007-02-01

    analyze eye movements in asymmetric visual search using the task of normal and mirrored position letters. To evaluate the effect of familiarity and stimulus features. METHODS: Eighty-three university students with normal or corrected-to-normal vision were asked to search for a letter in inverted position to the letters in a group of either normal or mirrored letters. Four types of letters were used (Z, N, E and G and the eye movements were tracked by a specialized computer-based system (eyetracking. The analyzed measurements were: reaction time, fixation number and duration, saccade distance and duration. RESULTS: All measures varied with the type of letter. Reaction time, fixation number, and saccade distance were higher when the task was to find the normal letter in a group of mirrored letters. In this condition, fixation duration was smaller. Interaction was found between familiarity and the type of letter for the reaction time, fixation number and duration. The reaction time and fixation number increased together with the stimulus complexity, with a greater increase for the normal letter target. Fixation duration, however, decreased with the complexity of the stimuli and the search condition. CONCLUSIONS: Finding a mirrored letter among normal letters proved to be easier than the contrary. The letter type also affected the performance. When the context is formed of unfamiliar complex stimuli, the fixation duration is shorter, indicating a narrower span for visual processing. Therefore, a greater number of fixations with shorter duration are needed for the unfamiliar context while less fixations with greater duration are needed for the familiar context.

  8. A dissociation of dorso-lateral striatum and amygdala function on the same stimulus-response habit task.

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    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.

  9. Stimulus- and state-dependence of systematic bias in spatial attention: additive effects of stimulus-size and time-on-task.

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    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.

  10. An investigation of response and stimulus modality transfer effects after dual-task training in younger and older.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lussier, Maxime; Gagnon, Christine; Bherer, Louis

    2012-01-01

    It has been shown that dual-task training leads to significant improvement in dual-task performance in younger and older adults. However, the extent to which training benefits to untrained tasks requires further investigation. The present study assessed (a) whether dual-task training leads to cross-modality transfer in untrained tasks using new stimuli and/or motor responses modalities, (b) whether transfer effects are related to improved ability to prepare and maintain multiple task-set and/or enhanced response coordination, (c) whether there are age-related differences in transfer effects. Twenty-three younger and 23 older adults were randomly assigned to dual-task training or control conditions. All participants were assessed before and after training on three dual-task transfer conditions; (1) stimulus modality transfer (2) response modality transfer (3) stimulus and response modalities transfer task. Training group showed larger improvement than the control group in the three transfer dual-task conditions, which suggests that training leads to more than specific learning of stimuli/response associations. Attentional costs analyses showed that training led to improved dual-task cost, only in conditions that involved new stimuli or response modalities, but not both. Moreover, training did not lead to a reduced task-set cost in the transfer conditions, which suggests some limitations in transfer effects that can be expected. Overall, the present study supports the notion that cognitive plasticity for attentional control is preserved in late adulthood.

  11. On application of kernel PCA for generating stimulus features for fMRI during continuous music listening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsatsishvili, Valeri; Burunat, Iballa; Cong, Fengyu; Toiviainen, Petri; Alluri, Vinoo; Ristaniemi, Tapani

    2018-06-01

    There has been growing interest towards naturalistic neuroimaging experiments, which deepen our understanding of how human brain processes and integrates incoming streams of multifaceted sensory information, as commonly occurs in real world. Music is a good example of such complex continuous phenomenon. In a few recent fMRI studies examining neural correlates of music in continuous listening settings, multiple perceptual attributes of music stimulus were represented by a set of high-level features, produced as the linear combination of the acoustic descriptors computationally extracted from the stimulus audio. NEW METHOD: fMRI data from naturalistic music listening experiment were employed here. Kernel principal component analysis (KPCA) was applied to acoustic descriptors extracted from the stimulus audio to generate a set of nonlinear stimulus features. Subsequently, perceptual and neural correlates of the generated high-level features were examined. The generated features captured musical percepts that were hidden from the linear PCA features, namely Rhythmic Complexity and Event Synchronicity. Neural correlates of the new features revealed activations associated to processing of complex rhythms, including auditory, motor, and frontal areas. Results were compared with the findings in the previously published study, which analyzed the same fMRI data but applied linear PCA for generating stimulus features. To enable comparison of the results, methodology for finding stimulus-driven functional maps was adopted from the previous study. Exploiting nonlinear relationships among acoustic descriptors can lead to the novel high-level stimulus features, which can in turn reveal new brain structures involved in music processing. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Feature-selective Attention in Frontoparietal Cortex: Multivoxel Codes Adjust to Prioritize Task-relevant Information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Jade; Rich, Anina N; Williams, Mark A; Woolgar, Alexandra

    2017-02-01

    Human cognition is characterized by astounding flexibility, enabling us to select appropriate information according to the objectives of our current task. A circuit of frontal and parietal brain regions, often referred to as the frontoparietal attention network or multiple-demand (MD) regions, are believed to play a fundamental role in this flexibility. There is evidence that these regions dynamically adjust their responses to selectively process information that is currently relevant for behavior, as proposed by the "adaptive coding hypothesis" [Duncan, J. An adaptive coding model of neural function in prefrontal cortex. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 2, 820-829, 2001]. Could this provide a neural mechanism for feature-selective attention, the process by which we preferentially process one feature of a stimulus over another? We used multivariate pattern analysis of fMRI data during a perceptually challenging categorization task to investigate whether the representation of visual object features in the MD regions flexibly adjusts according to task relevance. Participants were trained to categorize visually similar novel objects along two orthogonal stimulus dimensions (length/orientation) and performed short alternating blocks in which only one of these dimensions was relevant. We found that multivoxel patterns of activation in the MD regions encoded the task-relevant distinctions more strongly than the task-irrelevant distinctions: The MD regions discriminated between stimuli of different lengths when length was relevant and between the same objects according to orientation when orientation was relevant. The data suggest a flexible neural system that adjusts its representation of visual objects to preferentially encode stimulus features that are currently relevant for behavior, providing a neural mechanism for feature-selective attention.

  13. Modulations of the executive control network by stimulus onset asynchrony in a Stroop task

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Manipulating task difficulty is a useful way of elucidating the functional recruitment of the brain’s executive control network. In a Stroop task, pre-exposing the irrelevant word using varying stimulus onset asynchronies (‘negative’ SOAs) modulates the amount of behavioural interference and facilitation, suggesting disparate mechanisms of cognitive processing in each SOA. The current study employed a Stroop task with three SOAs (−400, -200, 0 ms), using functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate for the first time the neural effects of SOA manipulation. Of specific interest were 1) how SOA affects the neural representation of interference and facilitation; 2) response priming effects in negative SOAs; and 3) attentional effects of blocked SOA presentation. Results The results revealed three regions of the executive control network that were sensitive to SOA during Stroop interference; the 0 ms SOA elicited the greatest activation of these areas but experienced relatively smaller behavioural interference, suggesting that the enhanced recruitment led to more efficient conflict processing. Response priming effects were localized to the right inferior frontal gyrus, which is consistent with the idea that this region performed response inhibition in incongruent conditions to overcome the incorrectly-primed response, as well as more general action updating and response preparation. Finally, the right superior parietal lobe was sensitive to blocked SOA presentation and was most active for the 0 ms SOA, suggesting that this region is involved in attentional control. Conclusions SOA exerted both trial-specific and block-wide effects on executive processing, providing a unique paradigm for functional investigations of the cognitive control network. PMID:23902451

  14. An investigation of far response and stimulus modality transfer effects after dual-task training in younger and older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maxime eLussier

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available It has been shown that dual-task training leads to significant improvement in dual-task performances in younger and older adults. However, the extent to which training benefits to untrained tasks requires further investigation. The present study assessed (a whether dual-task training leads to cross-modality transfer in untrained tasks using new stimuli and/or motor responses modalities, (b whether transfer effects are related to improvement in working memory and/or enhanced response coordination, (c whether there are age-related differences in transfer effects. Twenty-three younger and 23 older adults were randomly assigned to dual-task training or control conditions. All participants were assessed before and after training on three dual-task transfer conditions; (1 stimulus modality transfer (2 response modality transfer (3 stimulus and response modalities transfer task. Training group showed larger improvement than the control group in the three transfer dual-task conditions, which suggests that training leads to more than specific learning of stimuli/response associations. Attentional cost analyses showed that training led to improved dual-task cost, only in conditions that involved new stimuli or response modalities, but not both. Moreover, training did not lead to a reduced task-set cost in the transfer conditions, which suggests some limitations in transfer effects that can be expected. Overall, the present study supports the notion that cognitive plasticity for attentional control is preserved in late adulthood.

  15. Video-task assessment of learning and memory in Macaques (Macaca mulatta) - Effects of stimulus movement on performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Washburn, David A.; Hopkins, William D.; Rumbaugh, Duane M.

    1989-01-01

    Effects of stimulus movement on learning, transfer, matching, and short-term memory performance were assessed with 2 monkeys using a video-task paradigm in which the animals responded to computer-generated images by manipulating a joystick. Performance on tests of learning set, transfer index, matching to sample, and delayed matching to sample in the video-task paradigm was comparable to that obtained in previous investigations using the Wisconsin General Testing Apparatus. Additionally, learning, transfer, and matching were reliably and significantly better when the stimuli or discriminanda moved than when the stimuli were stationary. External manipulations such as stimulus movement may increase attention to the demands of a task, which in turn should increase the efficiency of learning. These findings have implications for the investigation of learning in other populations, as well as for the application of the video-task paradigm to comparative study.

  16. Psychometric intelligence and P3 of the event-related potentials studied with a 3-stimulus auditory oddball task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wronka, E.A.; Kaiser, J.; Coenen, A.M.L.

    2013-01-01

    Relationship between psychometric intelligence measured with Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices (RAPM) and event-related potentials (ERP) was examined using 3-stimulus oddball task. Subjects who had scored higher on RAPM exhibited larger amplitude of P3a component. Additional analysis using the

  17. The Roles of Feature-Specific Task Set and Bottom-Up Salience in Attentional Capture: An ERP Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eimer, Martin; Kiss, Monika; Press, Clare; Sauter, Disa

    2009-01-01

    We investigated the roles of top-down task set and bottom-up stimulus salience for feature-specific attentional capture. Spatially nonpredictive cues preceded search arrays that included a color-defined target. For target-color singleton cues, behavioral spatial cueing effects were accompanied by cue-induced N2pc components, indicative of…

  18. 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...

  19. Multi-task feature learning by using trace norm regularization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiangmei Zhang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Multi-task learning can extract the correlation of multiple related machine learning problems to improve performance. This paper considers applying the multi-task learning method to learn a single task. We propose a new learning approach, which employs the mixture of expert model to divide a learning task into several related sub-tasks, and then uses the trace norm regularization to extract common feature representation of these sub-tasks. A nonlinear extension of this approach by using kernel is also provided. Experiments conducted on both simulated and real data sets demonstrate the advantage of the proposed approach.

  20. Neural correlates of context-dependent feature conjunction learning in visual search tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reavis, Eric A; Frank, Sebastian M; Greenlee, Mark W; Tse, Peter U

    2016-06-01

    Many perceptual learning experiments show that repeated exposure to a basic visual feature such as a specific orientation or spatial frequency can modify perception of that feature, and that those perceptual changes are associated with changes in neural tuning early in visual processing. Such perceptual learning effects thus exert a bottom-up influence on subsequent stimulus processing, independent of task-demands or endogenous influences (e.g., volitional attention). However, it is unclear whether such bottom-up changes in perception can occur as more complex stimuli such as conjunctions of visual features are learned. It is not known whether changes in the efficiency with which people learn to process feature conjunctions in a task (e.g., visual search) reflect true bottom-up perceptual learning versus top-down, task-related learning (e.g., learning better control of endogenous attention). Here we show that feature conjunction learning in visual search leads to bottom-up changes in stimulus processing. First, using fMRI, we demonstrate that conjunction learning in visual search has a distinct neural signature: an increase in target-evoked activity relative to distractor-evoked activity (i.e., a relative increase in target salience). Second, we demonstrate that after learning, this neural signature is still evident even when participants passively view learned stimuli while performing an unrelated, attention-demanding task. This suggests that conjunction learning results in altered bottom-up perceptual processing of the learned conjunction stimuli (i.e., a perceptual change independent of the task). We further show that the acquired change in target-evoked activity is contextually dependent on the presence of distractors, suggesting that search array Gestalts are learned. Hum Brain Mapp 37:2319-2330, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. The neural dynamics of stimulus and response conflict processing as a function of response complexity and task demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohue, Sarah E.; Appelbaum, Lawrence G.; McKay, Cameron C.; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2016-01-01

    Both stimulus and response conflict can disrupt behavior by slowing response times and decreasing accuracy. Although several neural activations have been associated with conflict processing, it is unclear how specific any of these are to the type of stimulus conflict or the amount of response conflict. Here, we recorded electrical brain activity, while manipulating the type of stimulus conflict in the task (spatial [Flanker] versus semantic [Stroop]) and the amount of response conflict (two versus four response choices). Behaviorally, responses were slower to incongruent versus congruent stimuli across all task and response types, along with overall slowing for higher response-mapping complexity. The earliest incongruency-related neural effect was a short-duration frontally-distributed negativity at ~200 ms that was only present in the Flanker spatial-conflict task. At longer latencies, the classic fronto-central incongruency-related negativity ‘Ninc’ was observed for all conditions, which was larger and ~100 ms longer in duration with more response options. Further, the onset of the motor-related lateralized readiness potential (LRP) was earlier for the two vs. four response sets, indicating that smaller response sets enabled faster motor-response preparation. The late positive complex (LPC) was present in all conditions except the two-response Stroop task, suggesting this late conflict-related activity is not specifically related to task type or response-mapping complexity. Importantly, across tasks and conditions, the LRP onset at or before the conflict-related Ninc, indicating that motor preparation is a rapid, automatic process that interacts with the conflict-detection processes after it has begun. Together, these data highlight how different conflict-related processes operate in parallel and depend on both the cognitive demands of the task and the number of response options. PMID:26827917

  2. Sequential Modulations in a Combined Horizontal and Vertical Simon Task: Is There ERP Evidence for Feature Integration Effects?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoppe, Katharina; Küper, Kristina; Wascher, Edmund

    2017-01-01

    In the Simon task, participants respond faster when the task-irrelevant stimulus position and the response position are corresponding, for example on the same side, compared to when they have a non-corresponding relation. Interestingly, this Simon effect is reduced after non-corresponding trials. Such sequential effects can be explained in terms of a more focused processing of the relevant stimulus dimension due to increased cognitive control, which transfers from the previous non-corresponding trial (conflict adaptation effects). Alternatively, sequential modulations of the Simon effect can also be due to the degree of trial-to-trial repetitions and alternations of task features, which is confounded with the correspondence sequence (feature integration effects). In the present study, we used a spatially two-dimensional Simon task with vertical response keys to examine the contribution of adaptive cognitive control and feature integration processes to the sequential modulation of the Simon effect. The two-dimensional Simon task creates correspondences in the vertical as well as in the horizontal dimension. A trial-by-trial alternation of the spatial dimension, for example from a vertical to a horizontal stimulus presentation, generates a subset containing no complete repetitions of task features, but only complete alternations and partial repetitions, which are equally distributed over all correspondence sequences. In line with the assumed feature integration effects, we found sequential modulations of the Simon effect only when the spatial dimension repeated. At least for the horizontal dimension, this pattern was confirmed by the parietal P3b, an event-related potential that is assumed to reflect stimulus-response link processes. Contrary to conflict adaptation effects, cognitive control, measured by the fronto-central N2 component of the EEG, was not sequentially modulated. Overall, our data provide behavioral as well as electrophysiological evidence for feature

  3. The developmental pattern of stimulus and response interference in a color-object Stroop task: an ERP study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jongen Ellen MM

    2008-09-01

    with the RT response interference effect. Conclusion Although processes of stimulus interference control as measured with the color-object Stroop task seem to reach mature levels relatively early in childhood (6–7 years, development of response interference control appears to continue into late adolescence as 10–12 year-olds were still more susceptible to errors of response interference than adults.

  4. Extremely Selective Attention: Eye-Tracking Studies of the Dynamic Allocation of Attention to Stimulus Features in Categorization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blair, Mark R.; Watson, Marcus R.; Walshe, R. Calen; Maj, Fillip

    2009-01-01

    Humans have an extremely flexible ability to categorize regularities in their environment, in part because of attentional systems that allow them to focus on important perceptual information. In formal theories of categorization, attention is typically modeled with weights that selectively bias the processing of stimulus features. These theories…

  5. Instructor Perceptions of Web Technology Feature and Instructional Task Fit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strader, Troy J.; Reed, Diana; Suh, Inchul; Njoroge, Joyce W.

    2015-01-01

    In this exploratory study, university faculty (instructor) perceptions of the extent to which eight unique features of Web technology are useful for various instructional tasks are identified. Task-technology fit propositions are developed and tested using data collected from a survey of instructors in business, pharmacy, and arts/humanities. It…

  6. Speed and Lateral Inhibition of Stimulus Processing Contribute to Individual Differences in Stroop-Task Performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naber, M.; Vedder, Anneke; Brown, Stephen; Nieuwenhuis, Sander

    2016-01-01

    The Stroop task is a popular neuropsychological test that measures executive control. Strong Stroop interference is commonly interpreted in neuropsychology as a diagnostic marker of impairment in executive control, possibly reflecting executive dysfunction. However, popular models of the Stroop task

  7. Monkeys Rely on Recency of Stimulus Repetition When Solving Short-Term Memory Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittig, John H., Jr.; Richmond, Barry J.

    2014-01-01

    Seven monkeys performed variants of two short-term memory tasks that others have used to differentiate between selective and nonselective memory mechanisms. The first task was to view a list of sequentially presented images and identify whether a test matched any image from the list, but not a distractor from a preceding list. Performance was best…

  8. Serial or overlapping processing in multitasking as individual preference: Effects of stimulus preview on task switching and concurrent dual-task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reissland, Jessika; Manzey, Dietrich

    2016-07-01

    Understanding the mechanisms and performance consequences of multitasking has long been in focus of scientific interest, but has been investigated by three research lines more or less isolated from each other. Studies in the fields of the psychological refractory period, task switching, and interruptions have scored with a high experimental control, but usually do not give participants many degrees of freedom to self-organize the processing of two concurrent tasks. Individual strategies as well as their impact on efficiency have mainly been neglected. Self-organized multitasking has been investigated in the field of human factors, but primarily with respect to overall performance without detailed investigation of how the tasks are processed. The current work attempts to link aspects of these research lines. All of them, explicitly or implicitly, provide hints about an individually preferred type of task organization, either more cautious trying to work strictly serially on only one task at a time or more daring with a focus on task interleaving and, if possible, also partially overlapping (parallel) processing. In two experiments we investigated different strategies of task organization and their impact on efficiency using a new measure of overall multitasking efficiency. Experiment 1 was based on a classical task switching paradigm with two classification tasks, but provided one group of participants with a stimulus preview of the task to switch to next, enabling at least partial overlapping processing. Indeed, this preview led to a reduction of switch costs and to an increase of dual-task efficiency, but only for a subgroup of participants. They obviously exploited the possibility of overlapping processing, while the others worked mainly serially. While task-sequence was externally guided in the first experiment, Experiment 2 extended the approach by giving the participants full freedom of task organization in concurrent performance of the same tasks. Fine

  9. Control over the Strength of Connections Between Modules: A Double Dissociation Between Stimulus Format and Task Revealed by Granger Causality Mapping in fMRI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Britt eAnderson

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Drawing on theoretical and computational work with the localist Dual Route reading model and results from behavioral studies, Besner, Moroz, and O'Malley (2011 proposed that the ability to perform tasks that require overriding stimulus-specific defaults (e.g., semantics when naming Arabic numerals, and phonology when evaluating the parity of number words necessitate the ability to modulate the strength of connections between cognitive modules for lexical representation, semantics, and phonology on a task- and stimulus-specific basis. We used fMRI to evaluate this account by assessing changes in functional connectivity while participants performed tasks that did and did not require such stimulus-task default overrides. The occipital region showing the greatest modulation of BOLD signal strength for the two stimulus types was used as the seed region for Granger Causality Mapping (GCM. Our GCM analysis revealed a region of rostromedial frontal cortex with a crossover interaction. When participants performed tasks that required overriding stimulus type defaults (i.e., parity judgments of number words and naming Arabic numerals functional connectivity between the occipital region and rostromedial frontal cortex was present. Statistically significant functional connectivity was absent when the tasks were the default for the stimulus type (i.e., parity judgments of Arabic numerals and reading number words. This frontal region (BA 10 has previously been shown to be involved in goal-directed behaviour and maintenance of a specific task-set. We conclude that overriding stimulus-task defaults requires a modulation of connection strengths between cognitive modules and that the override mechanism predicted from cognitive theory is instantiated by frontal modulation of neural activity of brain regions specialized for sensory processing.

  10. The contributions of numerical acuity and non-numerical stimulus features to the development of the number sense and symbolic math achievement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Starr, Ariel; DeWind, Nicholas K; Brannon, Elizabeth M

    2017-11-01

    Numerical acuity, frequently measured by a Weber fraction derived from nonsymbolic numerical comparison judgments, has been shown to be predictive of mathematical ability. However, recent findings suggest that stimulus controls in these tasks are often insufficiently implemented, and the proposal has been made that alternative visual features or inhibitory control capacities may actually explain this relation. Here, we use a novel mathematical algorithm to parse the relative influence of numerosity from other visual features in nonsymbolic numerical discrimination and to examine the strength of the relations between each of these variables, including inhibitory control, and mathematical ability. We examined these questions developmentally by testing 4-year-old children, 6-year-old children, and adults with a nonsymbolic numerical comparison task, a symbolic math assessment, and a test of inhibitory control. We found that the influence of non-numerical features decreased significantly over development but that numerosity was a primary determinate of decision making at all ages. In addition, numerical acuity was a stronger predictor of math achievement than either non-numerical bias or inhibitory control in children. These results suggest that the ability to selectively attend to number contributes to the maturation of the number sense and that numerical acuity, independent of inhibitory control, contributes to math achievement in early childhood. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Common and differential electrophysiological mechanisms underlying semantic object memory retrieval probed by features presented in different stimulus types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiang, Hsueh-Sheng; Eroh, Justin; Spence, Jeffrey S; Motes, Michael A; Maguire, Mandy J; Krawczyk, Daniel C; Brier, Matthew R; Hart, John; Kraut, Michael A

    2016-08-01

    How the brain combines the neural representations of features that comprise an object in order to activate a coherent object memory is poorly understood, especially when the features are presented in different modalities (visual vs. auditory) and domains (verbal vs. nonverbal). We examined this question using three versions of a modified Semantic Object Retrieval Test, where object memory was probed by a feature presented as a written word, a spoken word, or a picture, followed by a second feature always presented as a visual word. Participants indicated whether each feature pair elicited retrieval of the memory of a particular object. Sixteen subjects completed one of the three versions (N=48 in total) while their EEG were recorded simultaneously. We analyzed EEG data in four separate frequency bands (delta: 1-4Hz, theta: 4-7Hz; alpha: 8-12Hz; beta: 13-19Hz) using a multivariate data-driven approach. We found that alpha power time-locked to response was modulated by both cross-modality (visual vs. auditory) and cross-domain (verbal vs. nonverbal) probing of semantic object memory. In addition, retrieval trials showed greater changes in all frequency bands compared to non-retrieval trials across all stimulus types in both response-locked and stimulus-locked analyses, suggesting dissociable neural subcomponents involved in binding object features to retrieve a memory. We conclude that these findings support both modality/domain-dependent and modality/domain-independent mechanisms during semantic object memory retrieval. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Stimulus-dependent modulation of visual neglect in a touch-screen cancellation task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Ingo; Volkening, Katharina; Garbacenkaite, Ruta

    2015-05-01

    Patients with left-sided neglect frequently show omissions and repetitive behavior on cancellation tests. Using a touch-screen-based cancellation task, we tested how visual feedback and distracters influence the number of omissions and perseverations. Eighteen patients with left-sided visual neglect and 18 healthy controls performed four different cancellation tasks on an iPad touch screen: no feedback (the display did not change during the task), visual feedback (touched targets changed their color from black to green), visual feedback with distracters (20 distracters were evenly embedded in the display; detected targets changed their color from black to green), vanishing targets (touched targets disappeared from the screen). Except for the condition with vanishing targets, neglect patients had significantly more omissions and perseverations than healthy controls in the remaining three subtests. Both conditions providing feedback by changing the target color showed the highest number of omissions. Erasure of targets nearly diminished omissions completely. The highest rate of perseverations was observed in the no-feedback condition. The implementation of distracters led to a moderate number of perseverations. Visual feedback without distracters and vanishing targets abolished perseverations nearly completely. Visual feedback and the presence of distracters aggravated hemispatial neglect. This finding is compatible with impaired disengagement from the ipsilesional side as an important factor of visual neglect. Improvement of cancellation behavior with vanishing targets could have therapeutic implications. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. 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...

  14. A time estimation task as a possible measure of emotions: difference depending on the nature of the stimulus used.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Auriane eGros

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Time perception is fundamental for human experience. A topic which has attracted the attention of researchers since long time is how the stimulus sensory modality (e.g., images vs. sounds affects time judgments. However, so far, no study has directly compared the effect of two sensory modalities using emotional stimuli on time judgments.Methods: In the present two studies, healthy participants were asked to estimate the duration of a pure sound preceded by the presentation of odors vs. emotional videos as priming stimuli (implicit emotion-eliciting task. During the task, skin conductance (SC was measured as an index of arousal. Results: Olfactory stimuli resulted in an increase in SC and in a constant time overestimation. Video stimuli resulted in an increase SC (emotional arousal, which decreased linearly overtime. Critically, video stimuli resulted in an initial time underestimation, which shifted progressively towards a time overestimation. These results suggest that video stimuli recruited both arousal-related and attention-related mechanisms, and that the role played by these mechanisms changed overtime. Conclusions: These pilot studies highlight the importance of comparing the effect of different kinds on temporal estimation tasks, and suggests that odors are well suited to investigate arousal-related temporal distortions, while videos are ideal to investigate both arousal-related and attention-related mechanisms.

  15. On the functional significance of retrieval mode: Task switching disrupts the recollection of conceptual stimulus information from episodic memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küper, Kristina

    2018-01-01

    Episodic memory retrieval is assumed to be associated with the tonic cognitive state of retrieval mode. Despite extensive research into the neurophysiological correlates of retrieval mode, as of yet, relatively little is known about its functional significance. The present event-related potential (ERP) study was aimed at examining the impact of retrieval mode on the specificity of memory content retrieved in the course of familiarity and recollection processes. In two experiments, participants performed a recognition memory inclusion task in which they had to distinguish identically repeated and re-colored versions of study items from new items. In Experiment 1, participants had to alternate between the episodic memory task and a semantic task requiring a natural/artificial decision. In Experiment 2, the two tasks were instead performed in separate blocks. ERPs locked to the preparatory cues in the test phases indicated that participants did not establish retrieval mode on switch trials in Experiment 1. In the absence of retrieval mode, neither type of studied item elicited ERP correlates of familiarity-based retrieval (FN400). Recollection-related late positive complex (LPC) old/new effects emerged only for identically repeated but not for conceptually identical but perceptually changed versions of study items. With blocked retrieval in Experiment 2, both types of old items instead elicited equivalent FN400 and LPC old/new effects. The LPC data indicate that retrieval mode may play an important role in the successful recollection of conceptual stimulus information. The FN400 results additionally suggest that task switching may have a detrimental effect on familiarity-based memory retrieval. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. The effects of stimulus novelty and familiarity on neuronal activity in the amygdala of monkeys performing recognition memory tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, F A; Rolls, E T

    1993-01-01

    The function of the amygdala in behavioural responses to novel stimuli and its possible function in recognition memory were investigated by recording the responses of 659 amygdaloid neurons in monkeys performing recognition memory and visual discrimination tasks. The aim was to determine the contribution of the amygdala in the encoding of familiarity and therefore its role in supporting memory-related neuronal mechanisms in the basal forebrain. The responses of three groups of neurons reflected different forms of memory. One group (n = 10) responded maximally to novel stimuli and significantly less so to the same stimuli when they were familiar. The calculated memory spans of these neurons were in the range of 2-10 intervening trials, and this short-term retention of information may reflect the operation of a neural mechanism encoding memory for the recency of stimulus presentation. Two other groups responded to the sight of particular categories of familiar stimuli: to foods (n = 6) or to faces (n = 10). The responses of some of these stimulus-selective neurons declined with repeated presentations of foods (3/4 tests) and faces (2/6 tests). The activity of these latter two groups of neurons may be involved in behavioural responses to familiar visual stimuli, particularly when such stimuli have affective or motivational significance. We conclude that the neurophysiological data provide evidence of amygdaloid mechanisms for the recognition of recently seen visual stimuli. However, these amygdaloid mechanisms do not appear to be sufficient to support the performance of long-term recognition memory tasks without additional and complementary functions carried out by other ventromedial temporal, prefrontal and diencephalic structures which also project to the basal forebrain.

  17. Stimulus-Related Independent Component and Voxel-Wise Analysis of Human Brain Activity during Free Viewing of a Feature Film

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahnakoski, Juha M.; Salmi, Juha; Jääskeläinen, Iiro P.; Lampinen, Jouko; Glerean, Enrico; Tikka, Pia; Sams, Mikko

    2012-01-01

    Understanding how the brain processes stimuli in a rich natural environment is a fundamental goal of neuroscience. Here, we showed a feature film to 10 healthy volunteers during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of hemodynamic brain activity. We then annotated auditory and visual features of the motion picture to inform analysis of the hemodynamic data. The annotations were fitted to both voxel-wise data and brain network time courses extracted by independent component analysis (ICA). Auditory annotations correlated with two independent components (IC) disclosing two functional networks, one responding to variety of auditory stimulation and another responding preferentially to speech but parts of the network also responding to non-verbal communication. Visual feature annotations correlated with four ICs delineating visual areas according to their sensitivity to different visual stimulus features. In comparison, a separate voxel-wise general linear model based analysis disclosed brain areas preferentially responding to sound energy, speech, music, visual contrast edges, body motion and hand motion which largely overlapped the results revealed by ICA. Differences between the results of IC- and voxel-based analyses demonstrate that thorough analysis of voxel time courses is important for understanding the activity of specific sub-areas of the functional networks, while ICA is a valuable tool for revealing novel information about functional connectivity which need not be explained by the predefined model. Our results encourage the use of naturalistic stimuli and tasks in cognitive neuroimaging to study how the brain processes stimuli in rich natural environments. PMID:22496909

  18. Stimulus-related independent component and voxel-wise analysis of human brain activity during free viewing of a feature film.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahnakoski, Juha M; Salmi, Juha; Jääskeläinen, Iiro P; Lampinen, Jouko; Glerean, Enrico; Tikka, Pia; Sams, Mikko

    2012-01-01

    Understanding how the brain processes stimuli in a rich natural environment is a fundamental goal of neuroscience. Here, we showed a feature film to 10 healthy volunteers during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of hemodynamic brain activity. We then annotated auditory and visual features of the motion picture to inform analysis of the hemodynamic data. The annotations were fitted to both voxel-wise data and brain network time courses extracted by independent component analysis (ICA). Auditory annotations correlated with two independent components (IC) disclosing two functional networks, one responding to variety of auditory stimulation and another responding preferentially to speech but parts of the network also responding to non-verbal communication. Visual feature annotations correlated with four ICs delineating visual areas according to their sensitivity to different visual stimulus features. In comparison, a separate voxel-wise general linear model based analysis disclosed brain areas preferentially responding to sound energy, speech, music, visual contrast edges, body motion and hand motion which largely overlapped the results revealed by ICA. Differences between the results of IC- and voxel-based analyses demonstrate that thorough analysis of voxel time courses is important for understanding the activity of specific sub-areas of the functional networks, while ICA is a valuable tool for revealing novel information about functional connectivity which need not be explained by the predefined model. Our results encourage the use of naturalistic stimuli and tasks in cognitive neuroimaging to study how the brain processes stimuli in rich natural environments.

  19. Stimulus-related independent component and voxel-wise analysis of human brain activity during free viewing of a feature film.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juha M Lahnakoski

    Full Text Available Understanding how the brain processes stimuli in a rich natural environment is a fundamental goal of neuroscience. Here, we showed a feature film to 10 healthy volunteers during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI of hemodynamic brain activity. We then annotated auditory and visual features of the motion picture to inform analysis of the hemodynamic data. The annotations were fitted to both voxel-wise data and brain network time courses extracted by independent component analysis (ICA. Auditory annotations correlated with two independent components (IC disclosing two functional networks, one responding to variety of auditory stimulation and another responding preferentially to speech but parts of the network also responding to non-verbal communication. Visual feature annotations correlated with four ICs delineating visual areas according to their sensitivity to different visual stimulus features. In comparison, a separate voxel-wise general linear model based analysis disclosed brain areas preferentially responding to sound energy, speech, music, visual contrast edges, body motion and hand motion which largely overlapped the results revealed by ICA. Differences between the results of IC- and voxel-based analyses demonstrate that thorough analysis of voxel time courses is important for understanding the activity of specific sub-areas of the functional networks, while ICA is a valuable tool for revealing novel information about functional connectivity which need not be explained by the predefined model. Our results encourage the use of naturalistic stimuli and tasks in cognitive neuroimaging to study how the brain processes stimuli in rich natural environments.

  20. Object-based selection from spatially-invariant representations: evidence from a feature-report task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsukura, Michi; Vecera, Shaun P

    2011-02-01

    Attention selects objects as well as locations. When attention selects an object's features, observers identify two features from a single object more accurately than two features from two different objects (object-based effect of attention; e.g., Duncan, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 113, 501-517, 1984). Several studies have demonstrated that object-based attention can operate at a late visual processing stage that is independent of objects' spatial information (Awh, Dhaliwal, Christensen, & Matsukura, Psychological Science, 12, 329-334, 2001; Matsukura & Vecera, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 16, 529-536, 2009; Vecera, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 126, 14-18, 1997; Vecera & Farah, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 123, 146-160, 1994). In the present study, we asked two questions regarding this late object-based selection mechanism. In Part I, we investigated how observers' foreknowledge of to-be-reported features allows attention to select objects, as opposed to individual features. Using a feature-report task, a significant object-based effect was observed when to-be-reported features were known in advance but not when this advance knowledge was absent. In Part II, we examined what drives attention to select objects rather than individual features in the absence of observers' foreknowledge of to-be-reported features. Results suggested that, when there was no opportunity for observers to direct their attention to objects that possess to-be-reported features at the time of stimulus presentation, these stimuli must retain strong perceptual cues to establish themselves as separate objects.

  1. Crossmodal integration enhances neural representation of task-relevant features in audiovisual face perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yuanqing; Long, Jinyi; Huang, Biao; Yu, Tianyou; Wu, Wei; Liu, Yongjian; Liang, Changhong; Sun, Pei

    2015-02-01

    Previous studies have shown that audiovisual integration improves identification performance and enhances neural activity in heteromodal brain areas, for example, the posterior superior temporal sulcus/middle temporal gyrus (pSTS/MTG). Furthermore, it has also been demonstrated that attention plays an important role in crossmodal integration. In this study, we considered crossmodal integration in audiovisual facial perception and explored its effect on the neural representation of features. The audiovisual stimuli in the experiment consisted of facial movie clips that could be classified into 2 gender categories (male vs. female) or 2 emotion categories (crying vs. laughing). The visual/auditory-only stimuli were created from these movie clips by removing the auditory/visual contents. The subjects needed to make a judgment about the gender/emotion category for each movie clip in the audiovisual, visual-only, or auditory-only stimulus condition as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signals were recorded. The neural representation of the gender/emotion feature was assessed using the decoding accuracy and the brain pattern-related reproducibility indices, obtained by a multivariate pattern analysis method from the fMRI data. In comparison to the visual-only and auditory-only stimulus conditions, we found that audiovisual integration enhanced the neural representation of task-relevant features and that feature-selective attention might play a role of modulation in the audiovisual integration. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. The use of faces as stimuli in neuroimaging and psychological experiments: a procedure to standardize stimulus features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronenschild, Ed H B M; Smeets, Floortje; Vuurman, Eric F P M; van Boxtel, Martin P J; Jolles, Jelle

    2009-11-01

    In psychological experiments involving facial stimuli, it is of great importance that the basic perceptual or psychological characteristics that are investigated are not confounded by factors such as brightness and contrast, head size, hair cut and color, skin color, and the presence of glasses and earrings. Standardization of facial stimulus materials reduces the effect of these confounding factors. We therefore employed a set of basic image processing techniques to deal with this issue. The processed images depict the faces in grayscale, all at the same size, brightness, and contrast, and confined to an oval mask revealing only the basic features such as the eyes, nose, and mouth. The standardization was successfully applied to four different face databases, consisting of male and female faces and including neutral as well as happy facial expressions. An important advantage of the proposed standardization is that featural as well as configurational information is retained. We also consider the procedure to be a major contribution to the development of a de facto standard for the use of facial stimuli in psychological experiments. Such methodological standardization would allow a better comparison of the results of these studies.

  3. Stimulus-response correspondence in go-nogo and choice tasks: Are reactions altered by the presence of an irrelevant salient object?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lien, Mei-Ching; Pedersen, Logan; Proctor, Robert W

    2016-11-01

    In 2-choice tasks, responses are faster when stimulus location corresponds to response location, even when stimulus location is irrelevant. Dolk et al. (J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 39:1248-1260, 2013a) found this stimulus-response correspondence effect with a single response location in a go-nogo task when an irrelevant Japanese waving cat was present. They argued that salient objects trigger spatial coding of the response relative to that object. We examined this claim using both behavioral and lateralized readiness potential (LRP) measures. In Experiment 1 participants determined the pitch of a left- or right-positioned tone, whereas in Experiment 2 they determined the color of a dot within a centrally located hand pointing left, right, or straight ahead. In both experiments, participants performed a go-nogo task with the right-index finger and a 2-choice task with both index fingers, with a left-positioned Japanese waving cat present or absent. For the go-nogo task, the cat induced a correspondence effect on response times (RT) to the tones (Experiment 1) but not the visual stimuli (Experiment 2). For the 2-choice task, a correspondence effect was evident in all conditions in both experiments. Cat's presence/absence did not significantly modulate the effect for right and left responses, although there was a trend toward increased RT and LRP for right responses in Experiment 1. The results imply that a salient, irrelevant object could provide a reference frame for response coding when attention is available to process it, as is likely in an auditory task (Experiment 1) but not a visual task (Experiment 2).

  4. Fixation to features and neural processing of facial expressions in a gender discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neath, Karly N; Itier, Roxane J

    2015-10-01

    Early face encoding, as reflected by the N170 ERP component, is sensitive to fixation to the eyes. Whether this sensitivity varies with facial expressions of emotion and can also be seen on other ERP components such as P1 and EPN, was investigated. Using eye-tracking to manipulate fixation on facial features, we found the N170 to be the only eye-sensitive component and this was true for fearful, happy and neutral faces. A different effect of fixation to features was seen for the earlier P1 that likely reflected general sensitivity to face position. An early effect of emotion (∼120 ms) for happy faces was seen at occipital sites and was sustained until ∼350 ms post-stimulus. For fearful faces, an early effect was seen around 80 ms followed by a later effect appearing at ∼150 ms until ∼300 ms at lateral posterior sites. Results suggests that in this emotion-irrelevant gender discrimination task, processing of fearful and happy expressions occurred early and largely independently of the eye-sensitivity indexed by the N170. Processing of the two emotions involved different underlying brain networks active at different times. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The Multi-Feature Hypothesis: Connectionist Guidelines for L2 Task Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moonen, Machteld; de Graaff, Rick; Westhoff, Gerard; Brekelmans, Mieke

    2014-01-01

    This study focuses on the effects of task type on the retention and ease of activation of second language (L2) vocabulary, based on the multi-feature hypothesis (Moonen, De Graaff, & Westhoff, 2006). Two tasks were compared: a writing task and a list-learning task. It was hypothesized that performing the writing task would yield higher…

  6. The Influence of Pre-stimulus EEG Activity on Reaction Time During a Verbal Sternberg Task is Related to Musical Expertise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Carina; Diaz Hernandez, Laura; Koenig, Thomas; Kottlow, Mara; Elmer, Stefan; Jäncke, Lutz

    2016-01-01

    Previous work highlighted the possibility that musical training has an influence on cognitive functioning. The suggested reason for this influence is the strong recruitment of attention, planning, and working memory functions during playing a musical instrument. The purpose of the present work was twofold, namely to evaluate the general relationship between pre-stimulus electrophysiological activity and cognition, and more specifically the influence of musical expertise on working memory functions. With this purpose in mind, we used covariance mapping analyses to evaluate whether pre-stimulus electroencephalographic activity is predictive for reaction time during a visual working memory task (Sternberg paradigm) in musicians and non-musicians. In line with our hypothesis, we replicated previous findings pointing to a general predictive value of pre-stimulus activity for working memory performance. Most importantly, we also provide first evidence for an influence of musical expertise on working memory performance that could distinctively be predicted by pre-stimulus spectral power. Our results open novel perspectives for better comprehending the vast influences of musical expertise on cognition.

  7. Classification of visual and linguistic tasks using eye-movement features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coco, Moreno I; Keller, Frank

    2014-03-07

    The role of the task has received special attention in visual-cognition research because it can provide causal explanations of goal-directed eye-movement responses. The dependency between visual attention and task suggests that eye movements can be used to classify the task being performed. A recent study by Greene, Liu, and Wolfe (2012), however, fails to achieve accurate classification of visual tasks based on eye-movement features. In the present study, we hypothesize that tasks can be successfully classified when they differ with respect to the involvement of other cognitive domains, such as language processing. We extract the eye-movement features used by Greene et al. as well as additional features from the data of three different tasks: visual search, object naming, and scene description. First, we demonstrated that eye-movement responses make it possible to characterize the goals of these tasks. Then, we trained three different types of classifiers and predicted the task participants performed with an accuracy well above chance (a maximum of 88% for visual search). An analysis of the relative importance of features for classification accuracy reveals that just one feature, i.e., initiation time, is sufficient for above-chance performance (a maximum of 79% accuracy in object naming). Crucially, this feature is independent of task duration, which differs systematically across the three tasks we investigated. Overall, the best task classification performance was obtained with a set of seven features that included both spatial information (e.g., entropy of attention allocation) and temporal components (e.g., total fixation on objects) of the eye-movement record. This result confirms the task-dependent allocation of visual attention and extends previous work by showing that task classification is possible when tasks differ in the cognitive processes involved (purely visual tasks such as search vs. communicative tasks such as scene description).

  8. Similar Task Features Shape Judgment and Categorization Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, Janina A.; von Helversen, Bettina; Rieskamp, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    The distinction between similarity-based and rule-based strategies has instigated a large body of research in categorization and judgment. Within both domains, the task characteristics guiding strategy shifts are increasingly well documented. Across domains, past research has observed shifts from rule-based strategies in judgment to…

  9. Facial Features Can Induce Emotion: Evidence from Affective Priming Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Chen Wu

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Our previous study found that schematic faces with direct gazes, with mouths, with horizontal oval eyes, or without noses, tend to be perceived as in negative emotion. In this study we further explore these factors by the affective priming task. Faces were taking as prime, and positive or negative words were probe. The task was to judge the valence of the probe. If the faces could induce emotions, a target word with the same emotional valence should be judged faster than with opposite valence (the congruency effect. Experiment 1 used the most positive and negative rated faces in previous study as the primes. The positive faces were with vertical oval eyes and without mouth, while the negative faces were with horizontal eyes and with mouth. Results of 34 participants showed that those faces indeed elicited congruency effects. Experiment 2 manipulated gaze directions (N = 16. After the task the participants were asked to rate the prime faces. According to their rating, faces with direct gaze was perceive as positive, and elicited congruency effect with positive words in affective priming task. Our data thus support the conjecture that shape of eyes, the existence of mouths, and gaze directions could induces emotion.

  10. Functional Dissociation of Latency-Variable, Stimulus- and Response-Locked Target P3 Sub-components in Task-Switching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brydges, Christopher R; Barceló, Francisco

    2018-01-01

    Cognitive control warrants efficient task performance in dynamic and changing environments through adjustments in executive attention, stimulus and response selection. The well-known P300 component of the human event-related potential (ERP) has long been proposed to index "context-updating"-critical for cognitive control-in simple target detection tasks. However, task switching ERP studies have revealed both target P3 (300-350 ms) and later sustained P3-like potentials (400-1,200 ms) to first targets ensuing transition cues, although it remains unclear whether these target P3-like potentials also reflect context updating operations. To address this question, we applied novel single-trial EEG analyses-residue iteration decomposition (RIDE)-in order to disentangle target P3 sub-components in a sample of 22 young adults while they either repeated or switched (updated) task rules. The rationale was to revise the context updating hypothesis of P300 elicitation in the light of new evidence suggesting that "the context" consists of not only the sensory units of stimulation, but also associated motor units, and intermediate low- and high-order sensorimotor units, all of which may need to be dynamically updated on a trial by trial basis. The results showed functionally distinct target P3-like potentials in stimulus-locked, response-locked, and intermediate RIDE component clusters overlying parietal and frontal regions, implying multiple functionally distinct, though temporarily overlapping context updating operations. These findings support a reformulated version of the context updating hypothesis, and reveal a rich family of distinct target P3-like sub-components during the reactive control of target detection in task-switching, plausibly indexing the complex and dynamic workings of frontoparietal cortical networks subserving cognitive control.

  11. How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almond, Russell G.; Kim, Yoon Jeon; Velasquez, Gertrudes; Shute, Valerie J.

    2014-01-01

    One of the key ideas of evidence-centered assessment design (ECD) is that task features can be deliberately manipulated to change the psychometric properties of items. ECD identifies a number of roles that task-feature variables can play, including determining the focus of evidence, guiding form creation, determining item difficulty and…

  12. The Influence of Stimulus Discriminability on Young Children's Interference Control in the Stroop-Like Happy-Sad Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bluell, Alexandra M.; Montgomery, Derek E.

    2014-01-01

    The day-night paradigm, where children respond to a pair of pictures with opposite labels for a series of trials, is a widely used measure of interference control. Recent research has shown that a happy-sad variant of the day-night task was significantly more difficult than the standard day-night task. The present research examined whether the…

  13. Task-relevant perceptual features can define categories in visual memory too.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonelli, Karla B; Williams, Carrick C

    2017-11-01

    Although Konkle, Brady, Alvarez, and Oliva (2010, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 139(3), 558) claim that visual long-term memory (VLTM) is organized on underlying conceptual, not perceptual, information, visual memory results from visual search tasks are not well explained by this theory. We hypothesized that when viewing an object, any task-relevant visual information is critical to the organizational structure of VLTM. In two experiments, we examined the organization of VLTM by measuring the amount of retroactive interference created by objects possessing different combinations of task-relevant features. Based on task instructions, only the conceptual category was task relevant or both the conceptual category and a perceptual object feature were task relevant. Findings indicated that when made task relevant, perceptual object feature information, along with conceptual category information, could affect memory organization for objects in VLTM. However, when perceptual object feature information was task irrelevant, it did not contribute to memory organization; instead, memory defaulted to being organized around conceptual category information. These findings support the theory that a task-defined organizational structure is created in VLTM based on the relevance of particular object features and information.

  14. Conditional Mutual Information Based Feature Selection for Classification Task

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Novovičová, Jana; Somol, Petr; Haindl, Michal; Pudil, Pavel

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 45, č. 4756 (2007), s. 417-426 ISSN 0302-9743 R&D Projects: GA MŠk 1M0572; GA AV ČR IAA2075302 EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 507752 - MUSCLE Grant - others:GA MŠk(CZ) 2C06019 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10750506 Keywords : Pattern classification * feature selection * conditional mutual information * text categorization Subject RIV: BB - Applied Statistics, Operational Research Impact factor: 0.402, year: 2005

  15. Multi-task feature selection in microarray data by binary integer programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lan, Liang; Vucetic, Slobodan

    2013-12-20

    A major challenge in microarray classification is that the number of features is typically orders of magnitude larger than the number of examples. In this paper, we propose a novel feature filter algorithm to select the feature subset with maximal discriminative power and minimal redundancy by solving a quadratic objective function with binary integer constraints. To improve the computational efficiency, the binary integer constraints are relaxed and a low-rank approximation to the quadratic term is applied. The proposed feature selection algorithm was extended to solve multi-task microarray classification problems. We compared the single-task version of the proposed feature selection algorithm with 9 existing feature selection methods on 4 benchmark microarray data sets. The empirical results show that the proposed method achieved the most accurate predictions overall. We also evaluated the multi-task version of the proposed algorithm on 8 multi-task microarray datasets. The multi-task feature selection algorithm resulted in significantly higher accuracy than when using the single-task feature selection methods.

  16. Perceptual learning of basic visual features remains task specific with Training-Plus-Exposure (TPE) training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cong, Lin-Juan; Wang, Ru-Jie; Yu, Cong; Zhang, Jun-Yun

    2016-01-01

    Visual perceptual learning is known to be specific to the trained retinal location, feature, and task. However, location and feature specificity can be eliminated by double-training or TPE training protocols, in which observers receive additional exposure to the transfer location or feature dimension via an irrelevant task besides the primary learning task Here we tested whether these new training protocols could even make learning transfer across different tasks involving discrimination of basic visual features (e.g., orientation and contrast). Observers practiced a near-threshold orientation (or contrast) discrimination task. Following a TPE training protocol, they also received exposure to the transfer task via performing suprathreshold contrast (or orientation) discrimination in alternating blocks of trials in the same sessions. The results showed no evidence for significant learning transfer to the untrained near-threshold contrast (or orientation) discrimination task after discounting the pretest effects and the suprathreshold practice effects. These results thus do not support a hypothetical task-independent component in perceptual learning of basic visual features. They also set the boundary of the new training protocols in their capability to enable learning transfer.

  17. Obligatory encoding of task-irrelevant features depletes working memory resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Louise; Bays, Paul M

    2013-02-18

    Selective attention is often considered the "gateway" to visual working memory (VWM). However, the extent to which we can voluntarily control which of an object's features enter memory remains subject to debate. Recent research has converged on the concept of VWM as a limited commodity distributed between elements of a visual scene. Consequently, as memory load increases, the fidelity with which each visual feature is stored decreases. Here we used changes in recall precision to probe whether task-irrelevant features were encoded into VWM when individuals were asked to store specific feature dimensions. Recall precision for both color and orientation was significantly enhanced when task-irrelevant features were removed, but knowledge of which features would be probed provided no advantage over having to memorize both features of all items. Next, we assessed the effect an interpolated orientation-or color-matching task had on the resolution with which orientations in a memory array were stored. We found that the presence of orientation information in the second array disrupted memory of the first array. The cost to recall precision was identical whether the interfering features had to be remembered, attended to, or could be ignored. Therefore, it appears that storing, or merely attending to, one feature of an object is sufficient to promote automatic encoding of all its features, depleting VWM resources. However, the precision cost was abolished when the match task preceded the memory array. So, while encoding is automatic, maintenance is voluntary, allowing resources to be reallocated to store new visual information.

  18. Task-induced frequency modulation features for brain-computer interfacing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayaram, Vinay; Hohmann, Matthias; Just, Jennifer; Schölkopf, Bernhard; Grosse-Wentrup, Moritz

    2017-10-01

    Objective. Task-induced amplitude modulation of neural oscillations is routinely used in brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) for decoding subjects’ intents, and underlies some of the most robust and common methods in the field, such as common spatial patterns and Riemannian geometry. While there has been some interest in phase-related features for classification, both techniques usually presuppose that the frequencies of neural oscillations remain stable across various tasks. We investigate here whether features based on task-induced modulation of the frequency of neural oscillations enable decoding of subjects’ intents with an accuracy comparable to task-induced amplitude modulation. Approach. We compare cross-validated classification accuracies using the amplitude and frequency modulated features, as well as a joint feature space, across subjects in various paradigms and pre-processing conditions. We show results with a motor imagery task, a cognitive task, and also preliminary results in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), as well as using common spatial patterns and Laplacian filtering. Main results. The frequency features alone do not significantly out-perform traditional amplitude modulation features, and in some cases perform significantly worse. However, across both tasks and pre-processing in healthy subjects the joint space significantly out-performs either the frequency or amplitude features alone. This result only does not hold for ALS patients, for whom the dataset is of insufficient size to draw any statistically significant conclusions. Significance. Task-induced frequency modulation is robust and straight forward to compute, and increases performance when added to standard amplitude modulation features across paradigms. This allows more information to be extracted from the EEG signal cheaply and can be used throughout the field of BCIs.

  19. Task-induced frequency modulation features for brain-computer interfacing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayaram, Vinay; Hohmann, Matthias; Just, Jennifer; Schölkopf, Bernhard; Grosse-Wentrup, Moritz

    2017-10-01

    Task-induced amplitude modulation of neural oscillations is routinely used in brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) for decoding subjects' intents, and underlies some of the most robust and common methods in the field, such as common spatial patterns and Riemannian geometry. While there has been some interest in phase-related features for classification, both techniques usually presuppose that the frequencies of neural oscillations remain stable across various tasks. We investigate here whether features based on task-induced modulation of the frequency of neural oscillations enable decoding of subjects' intents with an accuracy comparable to task-induced amplitude modulation. We compare cross-validated classification accuracies using the amplitude and frequency modulated features, as well as a joint feature space, across subjects in various paradigms and pre-processing conditions. We show results with a motor imagery task, a cognitive task, and also preliminary results in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), as well as using common spatial patterns and Laplacian filtering. The frequency features alone do not significantly out-perform traditional amplitude modulation features, and in some cases perform significantly worse. However, across both tasks and pre-processing in healthy subjects the joint space significantly out-performs either the frequency or amplitude features alone. This result only does not hold for ALS patients, for whom the dataset is of insufficient size to draw any statistically significant conclusions. Task-induced frequency modulation is robust and straight forward to compute, and increases performance when added to standard amplitude modulation features across paradigms. This allows more information to be extracted from the EEG signal cheaply and can be used throughout the field of BCIs.

  20. Grotoco@SLAM: Second Language Acquisition Modeling with Simple Features, Learners and Task-wise Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klerke, Sigrid; Martínez Alonso, Héctor; Plank, Barbara

    2018-01-01

    We present our submission to the 2018 Duolingo Shared Task on Second Language Acquisition Modeling (SLAM). We focus on evaluating a range of features for the task, including user-derived measures, while examining how far we can get with a simple linear classifier. Our analysis reveals that errors...

  1. Perirhinal Cortex Resolves Feature Ambiguity in Configural Object Recognition and Perceptual Oddity Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartko, Susan J.; Winters, Boyer D.; Cowell, Rosemary A.; Saksida, Lisa M.; Bussey, Timothy J.

    2007-01-01

    The perirhinal cortex (PRh) has a well-established role in object recognition memory. More recent studies suggest that PRh is also important for two-choice visual discrimination tasks. Specifically, it has been suggested that PRh contains conjunctive representations that help resolve feature ambiguity, which occurs when a task cannot easily be…

  2. 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),…

  3. 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.

  4. Contingent attentional capture across multiple feature dimensions in a temporal search task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, Motohiro; Kawahara, Jun I

    2016-01-01

    The present study examined whether attention can be flexibly controlled to monitor two different feature dimensions (shape and color) in a temporal search task. Specifically, we investigated the occurrence of contingent attentional capture (i.e., interference from task-relevant distractors) and resulting set reconfiguration (i.e., enhancement of single task-relevant set). If observers can restrict searches to a specific value for each relevant feature dimension independently, the capture and reconfiguration effect should only occur when the single relevant distractor in each dimension appears. Participants identified a target letter surrounded by a non-green square or a non-square green frame. The results revealed contingent attentional capture, as target identification accuracy was lower when the distractor contained a target-defining feature than when it contained a nontarget feature. Resulting set reconfiguration was also obtained in that accuracy was superior when the current target's feature (e.g., shape) corresponded to the defining feature of the present distractor (shape) than when the current target's feature did not match the distractor's feature (color). This enhancement was not due to perceptual priming. The present study demonstrated that the principles of contingent attentional capture and resulting set reconfiguration held even when multiple target feature dimensions were monitored. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Feature diagnosticity and task context shape activity in human scene-selective cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Matthew X; Gallivan, Jason P; Ferber, Susanne; Cant, Jonathan S

    2016-01-15

    Scenes are constructed from multiple visual features, yet previous research investigating scene processing has often focused on the contributions of single features in isolation. In the real world, features rarely exist independently of one another and likely converge to inform scene identity in unique ways. Here, we utilize fMRI and pattern classification techniques to examine the interactions between task context (i.e., attend to diagnostic global scene features; texture or layout) and high-level scene attributes (content and spatial boundary) to test the novel hypothesis that scene-selective cortex represents multiple visual features, the importance of which varies according to their diagnostic relevance across scene categories and task demands. Our results show for the first time that scene representations are driven by interactions between multiple visual features and high-level scene attributes. Specifically, univariate analysis of scene-selective cortex revealed that task context and feature diagnosticity shape activity differentially across scene categories. Examination using multivariate decoding methods revealed results consistent with univariate findings, but also evidence for an interaction between high-level scene attributes and diagnostic visual features within scene categories. Critically, these findings suggest visual feature representations are not distributed uniformly across scene categories but are shaped by task context and feature diagnosticity. Thus, we propose that scene-selective cortex constructs a flexible representation of the environment by integrating multiple diagnostically relevant visual features, the nature of which varies according to the particular scene being perceived and the goals of the observer. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Surface feature congruency effects in the object-reviewing paradigm are dependent on task memory demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimchi, Ruth; Pirkner, Yossef

    2014-08-01

    Perception of object continuity depends on establishing correspondence between objects viewed across disruptions in visual information. The role of spatiotemporal information in guiding object continuity is well documented; the role of surface features, however, is controversial. Some researchers have shown an object-specific preview benefit (OSPB)-a standard index of object continuity-only when correspondence could be based on an object's spatiotemporal information, whereas others have found color-based OSPB, suggesting that surface features can also guide object continuity. This study shows that surface feature-based OSPB is dependent on the task memory demands. When the task involved letters and matching just one target letter to the preview ones, no color congruency effect was found under spatiotemporal discontinuity and spatiotemporal ambiguity (Experiments 1-3), indicating that the absence of feature-based OSPB cannot be accounted for by salient spatiotemporal discontinuity. When the task involved complex shapes and matching two target shapes to the preview ones, color-based OSPB was obtained. Critically, however, when a visual working memory task was performed concurrently with the matching task, the presence of a nonspatial (but not a spatial) working memory load eliminated the color-based OSPB (Experiments 4 and 5). These results suggest that the surface feature congruency effects that are observed in the object-reviewing paradigm (with the matching task) reflect memory-based strategies that participants use to solve a memory-demanding task; therefore, they are not reliable measures of online object continuity and cannot be taken as evidence for the role of surface features in establishing object correspondence.

  7. Analysis of Time n Frequency EEG Feature Extraction Methods for Mental Task Classification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caglar Uyulan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Many endogenous and external components may affect the physiological, mental and behavioral states in humans. Monitoring tools are required to evaluate biomarkers, identify biological events, and predict their outcomes. Being one of the valuable indicators, brain biomarkers derived from temporal or spectral electroencephalography (EEG signals processing, allow for the classification of mental disorders and mental tasks. An EEG signal has a nonstationary nature and individual frequency feature, hence it can be concluded that each subject has peculiar timing and data to extract unique features. In order to classify data, which are collected by performing four mental task (reciting the alphabet backwards, imagination of rotation of a cube, imagination of right hand movements (open/close and performing mathematical operations, discriminative features were extracted using four competitive time-frequency techniques; Wavelet Packet Decomposition (WPD, Morlet Wavelet Transform (MWT, Short Time Fourier Transform (STFT and Wavelet Filter Bank (WFB, respectively. The extracted features using both time and frequency domain information were then reduced using a principal component analysis for subset reduction. Finally, the reduced subsets were fed into a multi-layer perceptron neural network (MP-NN trained with back propagation (BP algorithm to generate a predictive model. This study mainly focuses on comparing the relative performance of time-frequency feature extraction methods that are used to classify mental tasks. The real-time (RT conducted experimental results underlined that the WPD feature extraction method outperforms with 92% classification accuracy compared to three other aforementioned methods for four different mental tasks.

  8. Biometric recognition via texture features of eye movement trajectories in a visual searching task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chunyong; Xue, Jiguo; Quan, Cheng; Yue, Jingwei; Zhang, Chenggang

    2018-01-01

    Biometric recognition technology based on eye-movement dynamics has been in development for more than ten years. Different visual tasks, feature extraction and feature recognition methods are proposed to improve the performance of eye movement biometric system. However, the correct identification and verification rates, especially in long-term experiments, as well as the effects of visual tasks and eye trackers' temporal and spatial resolution are still the foremost considerations in eye movement biometrics. With a focus on these issues, we proposed a new visual searching task for eye movement data collection and a new class of eye movement features for biometric recognition. In order to demonstrate the improvement of this visual searching task being used in eye movement biometrics, three other eye movement feature extraction methods were also tested on our eye movement datasets. Compared with the original results, all three methods yielded better results as expected. In addition, the biometric performance of these four feature extraction methods was also compared using the equal error rate (EER) and Rank-1 identification rate (Rank-1 IR), and the texture features introduced in this paper were ultimately shown to offer some advantages with regard to long-term stability and robustness over time and spatial precision. Finally, the results of different combinations of these methods with a score-level fusion method indicated that multi-biometric methods perform better in most cases.

  9. 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

  10. Task relevance modulates the cortical representation of feature conjunctions in the target template.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeder, Reshanne R; Hanke, Michael; Pollmann, Stefan

    2017-07-03

    Little is known about the cortical regions involved in representing task-related content in preparation for visual task performance. Here we used representational similarity analysis (RSA) to investigate the BOLD response pattern similarity between task relevant and task irrelevant feature dimensions during conjunction viewing and target template maintenance prior to visual search. Subjects were cued to search for a spatial frequency (SF) or orientation of a Gabor grating and we measured BOLD signal during cue and delay periods before the onset of a search display. RSA of delay period activity revealed that widespread regions in frontal, posterior parietal, and occipitotemporal cortices showed general representational differences between task relevant and task irrelevant dimensions (e.g., orientation vs. SF). In contrast, RSA of cue period activity revealed sensory-related representational differences between cue images (regardless of task) at the occipital pole and additionally in the frontal pole. Our data show that task and sensory information are represented differently during viewing and during target template maintenance, and that task relevance modulates the representation of visual information across the cortex.

  11. Representing Objects using Global 3D Relational Features for Recognition Tasks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mustafa, Wail

    2015-01-01

    representations. For representing objects, we derive global descriptors encoding shape using viewpoint-invariant features obtained from multiple sensors observing the scene. Objects are also described using color independently. This allows for combining color and shape when it is required for the task. For more...... robust color description, color calibration is performed. The framework was used in three recognition tasks: object instance recognition, object category recognition, and object spatial relationship recognition. For the object instance recognition task, we present a system that utilizes color and scale...

  12. Neural Determinants of Task Performance during Feature-Based Attention in Human Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Mengyuan

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Studies of feature-based attention have associated activity in a dorsal frontoparietal network with putative attentional priority signals. Yet, how this neural activity mediates attentional selection and whether it guides behavior are fundamental questions that require investigation. We reasoned that endogenous fluctuations in the quality of attentional priority should influence task performance. Human subjects detected a speed increment while viewing clockwise (CW) or counterclockwise (CCW) motion (baseline task) or while attending to either direction amid distracters (attention task). In an fMRI experiment, direction-specific neural pattern similarity between the baseline task and the attention task revealed a higher level of similarity for correct than incorrect trials in frontoparietal regions. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), we disrupted posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and found a selective deficit in the attention task, but not in the baseline task, demonstrating the necessity of this cortical area during feature-based attention. These results reveal that frontoparietal areas maintain attentional priority that facilitates successful behavioral selection. PMID:29497703

  13. Further Thoughts on "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveri, María Elena; Khan, Saad

    2014-01-01

    María Oliveri, and Saad Khan write that the article: "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games" provided helpful illustrations regarding the implementation of evidence-centered assessment design (Mislevy & Haertel, 2006; Mislevy, Steinberg, & Almond, 1999) with games and simulations.…

  14. Cue combination in a combined feature contrast detection and figure identification task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meinhardt, Günter; Persike, Malte; Mesenholl, Björn; Hagemann, Cordula

    2006-11-01

    Target figures defined by feature contrast in spatial frequency, orientation or both cues had to be detected in Gabor random fields and their shape had to be identified in a dual task paradigm. Performance improved with increasing feature contrast and was strongly correlated among both tasks. Subjects performed significantly better with combined cues than with single cues. The improvement due to cue summation was stronger than predicted by the assumption of independent feature specific mechanisms, and increased with the performance level achieved with single cues until it was limited by ceiling effects. Further, cue summation was also strongly correlated among tasks: when there was benefit due to the additional cue in feature contrast detection, there was also benefit in figure identification. For the same performance level achieved with single cues, cue summation was generally larger in figure identification than in feature contrast detection, indicating more benefit when processes of shape and surface formation are involved. Our results suggest that cue combination improves spatial form completion and figure-ground segregation in noisy environments, and therefore leads to more stable object vision.

  15. Neural correlates of the spatial and expectancy components of endogenous and stimulus-driven orienting of attention in the Posner task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doricchi, Fabrizio; Macci, Enrica; Silvetti, Massimo; Macaluso, Emiliano

    2010-07-01

    Voluntary orienting of visual attention is conventionally measured in tasks with predictive central cues followed by frequent valid targets at the cued location and by infrequent invalid targets at the uncued location. This implies that invalid targets entail both spatial reorienting of attention and breaching of the expected spatial congruency between cues and targets. Here, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to separate the neural correlates of the spatial and expectancy components of both endogenous orienting and stimulus-driven reorienting of attention. We found that during endogenous orienting with predictive cues, there was a significant deactivation of the right Temporal-Parietal Junction (TPJ). We also discovered that the lack of an equivalent deactivation with nonpredictive cues was matched to drop in attentional costs and preservation of attentional benefits. The right TPJ showed equivalent responses to invalid targets following predictive and nonpredictive cues. On the contrary, infrequent-unexpected invalid targets following predictive cues specifically activated the right Middle and Inferior Frontal Gyrus (MFG-IFG). Additional comparisons with spatially neutral trials demonstrated that, independently of cue predictiveness, valid targets activate the left TPJ, whereas invalid targets activate both the left and right TPJs. These findings show that the selective right TPJ activation that is found in the comparison between invalid and valid trials results from the reciprocal cancelling of the different activations that in the left TPJ are related to the processing of valid and invalid targets. We propose that left and right TPJs provide "matching and mismatching to attentional template" signals. These signals enable reorienting of attention and play a crucial role in the updating of the statistical contingency between cues and targets.

  16. Manifold regularized multi-task feature selection for multi-modality classification in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jie, Biao; Zhang, Daoqiang; Cheng, Bo; Shen, Dinggang

    2013-01-01

    Accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD), as well as its prodromal stage (i.e., mild cognitive impairment, MCI), is very important for possible delay and early treatment of the disease. Recently, multi-modality methods have been used for fusing information from multiple different and complementary imaging and non-imaging modalities. Although there are a number of existing multi-modality methods, few of them have addressed the problem of joint identification of disease-related brain regions from multi-modality data for classification. In this paper, we proposed a manifold regularized multi-task learning framework to jointly select features from multi-modality data. Specifically, we formulate the multi-modality classification as a multi-task learning framework, where each task focuses on the classification based on each modality. In order to capture the intrinsic relatedness among multiple tasks (i.e., modalities), we adopted a group sparsity regularizer, which ensures only a small number of features to be selected jointly. In addition, we introduced a new manifold based Laplacian regularization term to preserve the geometric distribution of original data from each task, which can lead to the selection of more discriminative features. Furthermore, we extend our method to the semi-supervised setting, which is very important since the acquisition of a large set of labeled data (i.e., diagnosis of disease) is usually expensive and time-consuming, while the collection of unlabeled data is relatively much easier. To validate our method, we have performed extensive evaluations on the baseline Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) data of Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. Our experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  17. Feature Binding and the Hebb Repetition Effect

    OpenAIRE

    Barrett, Maeve

    2008-01-01

    Previous studies have found no evidence that long-term learning of integrated objects and individual features benefit visual short term memory tasks (Logie, Brockmole, & Vandenbroucke, in press; Olson & Jiang, 2004; Treisman, 2006). These findings may have been due to stimulus interference as a restricted number of features were utilised in these studies to form objects in the stimulus arrays. In these studies, participants would have needed to break apart the features of several objects in a...

  18. Fixing the stimulus-as-fixed-effect fallacy in task fMRI [version 2; referees: 1 approved, 2 approved with reservations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob Westfall

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Most functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI experiments record the brain’s responses to samples of stimulus materials (e.g., faces or words. Yet the statistical modeling approaches used in fMRI research universally fail to model stimulus variability in a manner that affords population generalization, meaning that researchers’ conclusions technically apply only to the precise stimuli used in each study, and cannot be generalized to new stimuli. A direct consequence of this stimulus-as-fixed-effect fallacy is that the majority of published fMRI studies have likely overstated the strength of the statistical evidence they report. Here we develop a Bayesian mixed model (the random stimulus model; RSM that addresses this problem, and apply it to a range of fMRI datasets. Results demonstrate considerable inflation (50-200% in most of the studied datasets of test statistics obtained from standard “summary statistics”-based approaches relative to the corresponding RSM models. We demonstrate how RSMs can be used to improve parameter estimates, properly control false positive rates, and test novel research hypotheses about stimulus-level variability in human brain responses.

  19. Moderation of Stimulus Material on the Prediction of IQ with Infants' Performance in the Visual Expectation Paradigm: Do Greebles Make the Task More Challenging?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teubert, Manuel; Lohaus, Arnold; Fassbender, Ina; Vöhringer, Isabel A.; Suhrke, Janina; Poloczek, Sonja; Freitag, Claudia; Lamm, Bettina; Teiser, Johanna; Keller, Heidi; Knopf, Monika; Schwarzer, Gudrun

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to examine the role of the stimulus material for the prediction of later IQ by early learning measures in the Visual Expectation Paradigm (VExP). The VExP was assessed at 9?months using two types of stimuli, Greebles and human faces. Greebles were assumed to be associated with a higher load on working memory in…

  20. Methamphetamine functions as a positive and negative drug feature in a Pavlovian appetitive discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichel, Carmela M; Wilkinson, Jamie L; Bevins, Rick A

    2007-12-01

    This research determined the ability of methamphetamine to serve as a positive or negative feature, and assessed the ability of bupropion, cocaine, and naloxone to substitute for the methamphetamine features. Rats received methamphetamine (0.5 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) or saline 15 min before a conditioning session. For the feature positive (FP) group, offset of 15-s cue lights was followed by access to sucrose on methamphetamine sessions; sucrose was withheld during saline sessions. For the feature negative (FN) group, the light offset was followed by sucrose on saline sessions; sucrose was withheld during methamphetamine sessions. During acquisition, the FP group had higher responding on methamphetamine sessions than on saline sessions. For the FN group, responding was higher on saline sessions than on methamphetamine sessions. Conditioned responding was sensitive to methamphetamine dose. For the FP group, bupropion and cocaine fully and partially substituted for methamphetamine, respectively. In contrast, both drugs fully substituted for methamphetamine in the FN group. Naloxone did not substitute in either set of rats. FP-trained rats were more sensitive to the locomotor stimulating effects of the test drugs than FN-trained rats. This research demonstrates that the pharmacological effects of methamphetamine function as a FP or FN in this Pavlovian discrimination task and that training history can affect conditioned responding and locomotor effects evoked by a drug.

  1. Feature singletons attract spatial attention independently of feature priming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yashar, Amit; White, Alex L; Fang, Wanghaoming; Carrasco, Marisa

    2017-08-01

    People perform better in visual search when the target feature repeats across trials (intertrial feature priming [IFP]). Here, we investigated whether repetition of a feature singleton's color modulates stimulus-driven shifts of spatial attention by presenting a probe stimulus immediately after each singleton display. The task alternated every two trials between a probe discrimination task and a singleton search task. We measured both stimulus-driven spatial attention (via the distance between the probe and singleton) and IFP (via repetition of the singleton's color). Color repetition facilitated search performance (IFP effect) when the set size was small. When the probe appeared at the singleton's location, performance was better than at the opposite location (stimulus-driven attention effect). The magnitude of this attention effect increased with the singleton's set size (which increases its saliency) but did not depend on whether the singleton's color repeated across trials, even when the previous singleton had been attended as a search target. Thus, our findings show that repetition of a salient singleton's color affects performance when the singleton is task relevant and voluntarily attended (as in search trials). However, color repetition does not affect performance when the singleton becomes irrelevant to the current task, even though the singleton does capture attention (as in probe trials). Therefore, color repetition per se does not make a singleton more salient for stimulus-driven attention. Rather, we suggest that IFP requires voluntary selection of color singletons in each consecutive trial.

  2. The Sensory Features of a Food Cue Influence Its Ability to Act as an Incentive Stimulus and Evoke Dopamine Release in the Nucleus Accumbens Core

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Bryan F.; Bryan, Myranda A.; Popov, Pavlo; Scarff, Raymond; Carter, Cody; Wright, Erin; Aragona, Brandon J.; Robinson, Terry E.

    2016-01-01

    The sensory properties of a reward-paired cue (a conditioned stimulus; CS) may impact the motivational value attributed to the cue, and in turn influence the form of the conditioned response (CR) that develops. A cue with multiple sensory qualities, such as a moving lever-CS, may activate numerous neural pathways that process auditory and visual…

  3. Tech-Assisted Language Learning Tasks in an EFL Setting: Use of Hand phone Recording Feature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Shakarami

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Technology with its speedy great leaps forward has undeniable impact on every aspect of our life in the new millennium. It has supplied us with different affordances almost daily or more precisely in a matter of hours. Technology and Computer seems to be a break through as for their roles in the Twenty-First century educational system. Examples are numerous, among which CALL, CMC, and Virtual learning spaces come to mind instantly. Amongst the newly developed gadgets of today are the sophisticated smart Hand phones which are far more ahead of a communication tool once designed for. Development of Hand phone as a wide-spread multi-tasking gadget has urged researchers to investigate its effect on every aspect of learning process including language learning. This study attempts to explore the effects of using cell phone audio recording feature, by Iranian EFL learners, on the development of their speaking skills. Thirty-five sophomore students were enrolled in a pre-posttest designed study. Data on their English speaking experience using audio–recording features of their Hand phones were collected. At the end of the semester, the performance of both groups, treatment and control, were observed, evaluated, and analyzed; thereafter procured qualitatively at the next phase. The quantitative outcome lent support to integrating Hand phones as part of the language learning curriculum. Keywords:

  4. 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…

  5. Task representation in individual and joint settings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang ePrinz

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper outlines a framework for task representation and discusses applications to interference tasks in individual and joint settings. The framework is derived from the Theory of Event Coding. This theory regards task sets as transient assemblies of event codes in which stimulus and response codes interact and shape each other in particular ways. On the one hand, stimulus and response codes compete with each other within their respective subsets (horizontal interactions. On the other hand, stimulus and response code cooperate with each other (vertical interactions. Code interactions instantiating competition and cooperation apply to two time scales: on-line performance (i.e., doing the task and off-line implementation (i.e., setting the task. Interference arises when stimulus and response codes overlap in features that are irrelevant for stimulus identification, but relevant for response selection. To resolve this dilemma, the feature profiles of event codes may become restructured in various ways. The framework is applied to three kinds of interference paradigms. Special emphasis is given to joint settings where tasks are shared between two participants. Major conclusions derived from these applications include: (1 Response competition is the chief driver of interference. Likewise, different modes of response competition give rise to different patterns of interference. (2 The type of features in which stimulus and response codes overlap is also a crucial factor. Different types of such features give likewise rise to different patterns of interference. (3 Task sets for joint settings conflate intraindividual conflicts between responses (what, with interindividual conflicts between responding agents (whom. Features of response codes may, therefore, not only address responses, but also responding agents (both physically and socially.

  6. Task representation in individual and joint settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prinz, Wolfgang

    2015-01-01

    This paper outlines a framework for task representation and discusses applications to interference tasks in individual and joint settings. The framework is derived from the Theory of Event Coding (TEC). This theory regards task sets as transient assemblies of event codes in which stimulus and response codes interact and shape each other in particular ways. On the one hand, stimulus and response codes compete with each other within their respective subsets (horizontal interactions). On the other hand, stimulus and response code cooperate with each other (vertical interactions). Code interactions instantiating competition and cooperation apply to two time scales: on-line performance (i.e., doing the task) and off-line implementation (i.e., setting the task). Interference arises when stimulus and response codes overlap in features that are irrelevant for stimulus identification, but relevant for response selection. To resolve this dilemma, the feature profiles of event codes may become restructured in various ways. The framework is applied to three kinds of interference paradigms. Special emphasis is given to joint settings where tasks are shared between two participants. Major conclusions derived from these applications include: (1) Response competition is the chief driver of interference. Likewise, different modes of response competition give rise to different patterns of interference; (2) The type of features in which stimulus and response codes overlap is also a crucial factor. Different types of such features give likewise rise to different patterns of interference; and (3) Task sets for joint settings conflate intraindividual conflicts between responses (what), with interindividual conflicts between responding agents (whom). Features of response codes may, therefore, not only address responses, but also responding agents (both physically and socially). PMID:26029085

  7. The effects of memory load and stimulus relevance on the EEG during a visual selective memory search task : An ERP and ERD/ERS study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gomarus, HK; Althaus, M; Wijers, AA; Minderaa, RB

    Objective: Psychophysiological correlates of selective attention and working memory were investigated in a group of 18 healthy children using a visually presented selective mernory search task. Methods: Subjects had to memorize one (load 1) or 3 (load3) letters (memory set) and search for these

  8. Early Stages of Melody Processing: Stimulus-Sequence and Task-Dependent Neuronal Activity in Monkey Auditory Cortical Fields A1 and R

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Pingbo; Mishkin, Mortimer; Sutter, Mitchell; Fritz, Jonathan B.

    2008-01-01

    To explore the effects of acoustic and behavioral context on neuronal responses in the core of auditory cortex (fields A1 and R), two monkeys were trained on a go/no-go discrimination task in which they learned to respond selectively to a four-note target (S+) melody and withhold response to a variety of other nontarget (S−) sounds. We analyzed evoked activity from 683 units in A1/R of the trained monkeys during task performance and from 125 units in A1/R of two naive monkeys. We characterized two broad classes of neural activity that were modulated by task performance. Class I consisted of tone-sequence–sensitive enhancement and suppression responses. Enhanced or suppressed responses to specific tonal components of the S+ melody were frequently observed in trained monkeys, but enhanced responses were rarely seen in naive monkeys. Both facilitatory and suppressive responses in the trained monkeys showed a temporal pattern different from that observed in naive monkeys. Class II consisted of nonacoustic activity, characterized by a task-related component that correlated with bar release, the behavioral response leading to reward. We observed a significantly higher percentage of both Class I and Class II neurons in field R than in A1. Class I responses may help encode a long-term representation of the behaviorally salient target melody. Class II activity may reflect a variety of nonacoustic influences, such as attention, reward expectancy, somatosensory inputs, and/or motor set and may help link auditory perception and behavioral response. Both types of neuronal activity are likely to contribute to the performance of the auditory task. PMID:18842950

  9. Task-specific feature extraction and classification of fMRI volumes using a deep neural network initialized with a deep belief network: Evaluation using sensorimotor tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Hojin; Plis, Sergey M; Calhoun, Vince D; Lee, Jong-Hwan

    2017-01-15

    Feedforward deep neural networks (DNNs), artificial neural networks with multiple hidden layers, have recently demonstrated a record-breaking performance in multiple areas of applications in computer vision and speech processing. Following the success, DNNs have been applied to neuroimaging modalities including functional/structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron-emission tomography data. However, no study has explicitly applied DNNs to 3D whole-brain fMRI volumes and thereby extracted hidden volumetric representations of fMRI that are discriminative for a task performed as the fMRI volume was acquired. Our study applied fully connected feedforward DNN to fMRI volumes collected in four sensorimotor tasks (i.e., left-hand clenching, right-hand clenching, auditory attention, and visual stimulus) undertaken by 12 healthy participants. Using a leave-one-subject-out cross-validation scheme, a restricted Boltzmann machine-based deep belief network was pretrained and used to initialize weights of the DNN. The pretrained DNN was fine-tuned while systematically controlling weight-sparsity levels across hidden layers. Optimal weight-sparsity levels were determined from a minimum validation error rate of fMRI volume classification. Minimum error rates (mean±standard deviation; %) of 6.9 (±3.8) were obtained from the three-layer DNN with the sparsest condition of weights across the three hidden layers. These error rates were even lower than the error rates from the single-layer network (9.4±4.6) and the two-layer network (7.4±4.1). The estimated DNN weights showed spatial patterns that are remarkably task-specific, particularly in the higher layers. The output values of the third hidden layer represented distinct patterns/codes of the 3D whole-brain fMRI volume and encoded the information of the tasks as evaluated from representational similarity analysis. Our reported findings show the ability of the DNN to classify a single fMRI volume based on the

  10. Commentary on "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games" by Almond et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timms, Mike

    2014-01-01

    In his commentary on "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games" by Almond et al., Mike Timms writes that his own research has involved the use of embedded assessments using simulations in interactive learning environments, and the Evidence Centered Design (ECD) approach has provided a solid…

  11. 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.

  12. The Effect of Creative Tasks on Electrocardiogram: Using Linear and Nonlinear Features in Combination with Classification Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sahar Zakeri

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Interest in the subject of creativity and its impacts on human life is growing extensively. However, only a few surveys pay attention to the relation between creativity and physiological changes. This paper presents a novel approach to distinguish between creativity states from electrocardiogram signals. Nineteen linear and nonlinear features of the cardiac signal were extracted to detect creativity states. Method: ECG signals of 52 participants were recorded while doing three tasks of Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT/ figural B. To remove artifacts, notch filter 50 Hz and Chebyshev II were applied. According to TTCT scores, participants were categorized into the high and low creativity groups: Participants with scores higher than 70 were assigned into the high creativity group and those with scores less than 30 were considered as low creativity group. Some linear and nonlinear features were extracted from the ECGs. Then, Support Vector Machine (SVM and Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS were used to classify the groups.Results: Applying the Wilcoxon test, significant differences were observed between rest and each three tasks of creativity. However, better discrimination was performed between rest and the first task. In addition, there were no statistical differences between the second and third task of the test. The results indicated that the SVM effectively detects all the three tasks from the rest, particularly the task 1 and reached the maximum accuracy of 99.63% in the linear analysis. In addition, the high creative group was separated from the low creative group with the accuracy of 98.41%.Conclusion: the combination of SVM classifier with linear features can be useful to show the relation between creativity and physiological changes.

  13. Orienting in virtual environments: How are surface features and environmental geometry weighted in an orientation task?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Debbie M; Bischof, Walter F

    2008-10-01

    We investigated how human adults orient in enclosed virtual environments, when discrete landmark information is not available and participants have to rely on geometric and featural information on the environmental surfaces. In contrast to earlier studies, where, for women, the featural information from discrete landmarks overshadowed the encoding of the geometric information, Experiment 1 showed that when featural information is conjoined with the environmental surfaces, men and women encoded both types of information. Experiment 2 showed that, although both types of information are encoded, performance in locating a goal position is better if it is close to a geometrically or featurally distinct location. Furthermore, although features are relied upon more strongly than geometry, initial experience with an environment influences the relative weighting of featural and geometric cues. Taken together, these results show that human adults use a flexible strategy for encoding spatial information.

  14. 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.

  15. Templates for Rejection: Configuring Attention to Ignore Task-Irrelevant Features

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arita, Jason T.; Carlisle, Nancy B.; Woodman, Geoffrey F.

    2012-01-01

    Theories of attention are compatible with the idea that we can bias attention to avoid selecting objects that have known nontarget features. Although this may underlie several existing phenomena, the explicit guidance of attention away from known nontargets has yet to be demonstrated. Here we show that observers can use feature cues (i.e., color)…

  16. Manifold Regularized Multi-Task Feature Selection for Multi-Modality Classification in Alzheimer’s Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jie, Biao; Cheng, Bo

    2014-01-01

    Accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), as well as its pro-dromal stage (i.e., mild cognitive impairment, MCI), is very important for possible delay and early treatment of the disease. Recently, multi-modality methods have been used for fusing information from multiple different and complementary imaging and non-imaging modalities. Although there are a number of existing multi-modality methods, few of them have addressed the problem of joint identification of disease-related brain regions from multi-modality data for classification. In this paper, we proposed a manifold regularized multi-task learning framework to jointly select features from multi-modality data. Specifically, we formulate the multi-modality classification as a multi-task learning framework, where each task focuses on the classification based on each modality. In order to capture the intrinsic relatedness among multiple tasks (i.e., modalities), we adopted a group sparsity regularizer, which ensures only a small number of features to be selected jointly. In addition, we introduced a new manifold based Laplacian regularization term to preserve the geometric distribution of original data from each task, which can lead to the selection of more discriminative features. Furthermore, we extend our method to the semi-supervised setting, which is very important since the acquisition of a large set of labeled data (i.e., diagnosis of disease) is usually expensive and time-consuming, while the collection of unlabeled data is relatively much easier. To validate our method, we have performed extensive evaluations on the baseline Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) data of Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. Our experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method. PMID:24505676

  17. Obligatory encoding of task-irrelevant features depletes working memory resources

    OpenAIRE

    Marshall, Louise; Bays, Paul M.

    2013-01-01

    Selective attention is often considered the “gateway” to visual working memory (VWM). However, the extent to which we can voluntarily control which of an object's features enter memory remains subject to debate. Recent research has converged on the concept of VWM as a limited commodity distributed between elements of a visual scene. Consequently, as memory load increases, the fidelity with which each visual feature is stored decreases. Here we used changes in recall precision to probe whether...

  18. A Transform-Based Feature Extraction Approach for Motor Imagery Tasks Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khorshidtalab, Aida; Mesbah, Mostefa; Salami, Momoh J. E.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we present a new motor imagery classification method in the context of electroencephalography (EEG)-based brain–computer interface (BCI). This method uses a signal-dependent orthogonal transform, referred to as linear prediction singular value decomposition (LP-SVD), for feature extraction. The transform defines the mapping as the left singular vectors of the LP coefficient filter impulse response matrix. Using a logistic tree-based model classifier; the extracted features are classified into one of four motor imagery movements. The proposed approach was first benchmarked against two related state-of-the-art feature extraction approaches, namely, discrete cosine transform (DCT) and adaptive autoregressive (AAR)-based methods. By achieving an accuracy of 67.35%, the LP-SVD approach outperformed the other approaches by large margins (25% compared with DCT and 6 % compared with AAR-based methods). To further improve the discriminatory capability of the extracted features and reduce the computational complexity, we enlarged the extracted feature subset by incorporating two extra features, namely, Q- and the Hotelling’s \\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{upgreek} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\setlength{\\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \\begin{document} }{}$T^{2}$ \\end{document} statistics of the transformed EEG and introduced a new EEG channel selection method. The performance of the EEG classification based on the expanded feature set and channel selection method was compared with that of a number of the state-of-the-art classification methods previously reported with the BCI IIIa competition data set. Our method came second with an average accuracy of 81.38%. PMID:27170898

  19. What to measure next to improve decision making? On top-down task driven feature saliency

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Lars Kai; Karadogan, Seliz; Marchegiani, Letizia

    2011-01-01

    Top-down attention is modeled as decision making based on incomplete information. We consider decisions made in a sequential measurement situation where initially only an incomplete input feature vector is available, however, where we are given the possibility to acquire additional input values...... among the missing features. The procecure thus poses the question what to do next? We take an information theoretical approach implemented for generality in a generative mixture model. The framework allows us reduce the decision about what to measure next in a classification problem to the estimation...

  20. 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.

  1. Odor valence linearly modulates attractiveness, but not age assessment, of invariant facial features in a memory-based rating task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seubert, Janina; Gregory, Kristen M; Chamberland, Jessica; Dessirier, Jean-Marc; Lundström, Johan N

    2014-01-01

    Scented cosmetic products are used across cultures as a way to favorably influence one's appearance. While crossmodal effects of odor valence on perceived attractiveness of facial features have been demonstrated experimentally, it is unknown whether they represent a phenomenon specific to affective processing. In this experiment, we presented odors in the context of a face battery with systematic feature manipulations during a speeded response task. Modulatory effects of linear increases of odor valence were investigated by juxtaposing subsequent memory-based ratings tasks--one predominantly affective (attractiveness) and a second, cognitive (age). The linear modulation pattern observed for attractiveness was consistent with additive effects of face and odor appraisal. Effects of odor valence on age perception were not linearly modulated and may be the result of cognitive interference. Affective and cognitive processing of faces thus appear to differ in their susceptibility to modulation by odors, likely as a result of privileged access of olfactory stimuli to affective brain networks. These results are critically discussed with respect to potential biases introduced by the preceding speeded response task.

  2. 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.

  3. Intrinsic motivation and attentional capture from gamelike features in a visual search task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Andrew T; Palmer, Evan M

    2014-03-01

    In psychology research studies, the goals of the experimenter and the goals of the participants often do not align. Researchers are interested in having participants who take the experimental task seriously, whereas participants are interested in earning their incentive (e.g., money or course credit) as quickly as possible. Creating experimental methods that are pleasant for participants and that reward them for effortful and accurate data generation, while not compromising the scientific integrity of the experiment, would benefit both experimenters and participants alike. Here, we explored a gamelike system of points and sound effects that rewarded participants for fast and accurate responses. We measured participant engagement at both cognitive and perceptual levels and found that the point system (which invoked subtle, anonymous social competition between participants) led to positive intrinsic motivation, while the sound effects (which were pleasant and arousing) led to attentional capture for rewarded colors. In a visual search task, points were awarded after each trial for fast and accurate responses, accompanied by short, pleasant sound effects. We adapted a paradigm from Anderson, Laurent, and Yantis (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 108(25):10367-10371, 2011b), in which participants completed a training phase during which red and green targets were probabilistically associated with reward (a point bonus multiplier). During a test phase, no points or sounds were delivered, color was irrelevant to the task, and previously rewarded targets were sometimes presented as distractors. Significantly longer response times on trials in which previously rewarded colors were present demonstrated attentional capture, and positive responses to a five-question intrinsic-motivation scale demonstrated participant engagement.

  4. 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

  5. Utility-based early modulation of processing distracting stimulus information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendt, Mike; Luna-Rodriguez, Aquiles; Jacobsen, Thomas

    2014-12-10

    Humans are selective information processors who efficiently prevent goal-inappropriate stimulus information to gain control over their actions. Nonetheless, stimuli, which are both unnecessary for solving a current task and liable to cue an incorrect response (i.e., "distractors"), frequently modulate task performance, even when consistently paired with a physical feature that makes them easily discernible from target stimuli. Current models of cognitive control assume adjustment of the processing of distractor information based on the overall distractor utility (e.g., predictive value regarding the appropriate response, likelihood to elicit conflict with target processing). Although studies on distractor interference have supported the notion of utility-based processing adjustment, previous evidence is inconclusive regarding the specificity of this adjustment for distractor information and the stage(s) of processing affected. To assess the processing of distractors during sensory-perceptual phases we applied EEG recording in a stimulus identification task, involving successive distractor-target presentation, and manipulated the overall distractor utility. Behavioral measures replicated previously found utility modulations of distractor interference. Crucially, distractor-evoked visual potentials (i.e., posterior N1) were more pronounced in high-utility than low-utility conditions. This effect generalized to distractors unrelated to the utility manipulation, providing evidence for item-unspecific adjustment of early distractor processing to the experienced utility of distractor information. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3416720-06$15.00/0.

  6. 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

  7. Visual features for perception, attention, and working memory: Toward a three-factor framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Liqiang

    2015-12-01

    Visual features are the general building blocks for attention, perception, and working memory. Here, I explore the factors which can quantitatively predict all the differences they make in various paradigms. I tried to combine the strengths of experimental and correlational approaches in a novel way by developing an individual-item differences analysis to extract the factors from 16 stimulus types on the basis of their roles in eight tasks. A large sample size (410) ensured that all eight tasks had a reliability (Cronbach's α) of no less than 0.975, allowing the factors to be precisely determined. Three orthogonal factors were identified which correspond respectively to featural strength (i.e., how close a stimulus is to a basic feature), visual strength (i.e., visual quality of the stimulus), and spatial strength (i.e., how well a stimulus can be represented as a spatial structure). Featural strength helped substantially in all the tasks but moderately less so in perceptual discrimination; visual strength helped substantially in low-level tasks but not in high-level tasks; and spatial strength helped change detection but hindered ensemble matching and visual search. Jointly, these three factors explained 96.4% of all the variances of the eight tasks, making it clear that they account for almost everything about the roles of these 16 stimulus types in these eight tasks. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. 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

  9. Ferris Wheels and Filling Bottles: A Case of a Student's Transfer of Covariational Reasoning across Tasks with Different Backgrounds and Features

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Heather Lynn; McClintock, Evan; Hornbein, Peter

    2017-01-01

    Using an actor-oriented perspective on transfer, we report a case of a student's transfer of covariational reasoning across tasks involving different backgrounds and features. In this study, we investigated the research question: How might a student's covariational reasoning on Ferris wheel tasks, involving attributes of distance, width, and…

  10. Interactional Features of Repair Negotiation in NS-NNS Interaction on Two Task Types: Information Gap and Personal Information Exchange

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitajima, Ryu

    2013-01-01

    The studies in task-based approaches in second language acquisition claim that controlled and goal convergent tasks such as information gap tasks surpass open-ended conversations such as personal information exchange tasks for the development of the learner's interlanguage, in that the formers promote more repair negotiation. And yet, few studies…

  11. Poverty of the stimulus revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berwick, Robert C; Pietroski, Paul; Yankama, Beracah; Chomsky, Noam

    2011-01-01

    A central goal of modern generative grammar has been to discover invariant properties of human languages that reflect "the innate schematism of mind that is applied to the data of experience" and that "might reasonably be attributed to the organism itself as its contribution to the task of the acquisition of knowledge" (Chomsky, 1971). Candidates for such invariances include the structure dependence of grammatical rules, and in particular, certain constraints on question formation. Various "poverty of stimulus" (POS) arguments suggest that these invariances reflect an innate human endowment, as opposed to common experience: Such experience warrants selection of the grammars acquired only if humans assume, a priori, that selectable grammars respect substantive constraints. Recently, several researchers have tried to rebut these POS arguments. In response, we illustrate why POS arguments remain an important source of support for appeal to a priori structure-dependent constraints on the grammars that humans naturally acquire. Copyright © 2011 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  12. 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...

  13. 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...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. Temporal Processing Instability with Millisecond Accuracy Is a Cardinal Feature of Sensorimotor Impairments in Autism Spectrum Disorder: Analysis Using the Synchronized Finger-Tapping Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morimoto, Chie; Hida, Eisuke; Shima, Keisuke; Okamura, Hitoshi

    2018-01-01

    To identify a specific sensorimotor impairment feature of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we focused on temporal processing with millisecond accuracy. A synchronized finger-tapping task was used to characterize temporal processing in individuals with ASD as compared to typically developing (TD) individuals. We found that individuals with ASD…

  17. [Features of dual--postural and calculation--task performance in patients with consequences of traumatic brain injury].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zharikova, A V; Zhavoronkova, L A; Maksakova, O A; Kuptsova, S V

    2012-01-01

    Dual tasks with voluntary postural control and calculation have been done by 14 patients (25.7 +/- 4.7 yo.) after traumatic brain injury and 40 healthy volunteers (29.8 +/- 2.5 y.o.). Complex clinical (MMSE, FIM, MPAI-3 and Berg scales) and stabilographic evaluation has been performed. According to clinical evaluation 8 patients were included into group 1 with less severe functional deficit and 6 patients formed group 2 with more severe deficit. Parameters of motor and especially cognitive sub-tasks in patients were lower than in healthy subjects in both separate and dual tasks. In group 2 these parameters were lower than in group 1. Certain types of dual task where the quality of sub-tasks, especially of the motor-one increased in healthy subjects and patients of the first group were revealed. The complex of stabilographic parameters which could be used for estimation of quality of sub-tasks performance has been revealed. Dual tasks could be an additional method of evaluation of patients' adaptive possibilities and certain type of dual task could become a promising approach to recovery at late period of rehabilitation.

  18. 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.

  19. Task Switching in a Hierarchical Task Structure: Evidence for the Fragility of the Task Repetition Benefit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lien, Mei-Ching; Ruthruff, Eric

    2004-01-01

    This study examined how task switching is affected by hierarchical task organization. Traditional task-switching studies, which use a constant temporal and spatial distance between each task element (defined as a stimulus requiring a response), promote a flat task structure. Using this approach, Experiment 1 revealed a large switch cost of 238 ms.…

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Non-linguistic learning in aphasia: Effects of training method and stimulus characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallila-Rohter, Sofia; Kiran, Swathi

    2013-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of the current study was to explore non-linguistic learning ability in patients with aphasia, examining the impact of stimulus typicality and feedback on success with learning. Method Eighteen patients with aphasia and eight healthy controls participated in this study. All participants completed four computerized, non-linguistic category-learning tasks. We probed learning ability under two methods of instruction: feedback-based (FB) and paired-associate (PA). We also examined the impact of task complexity on learning ability, comparing two stimulus conditions: typical (Typ) and atypical (Atyp). Performance was compared between groups and across conditions. Results Results demonstrated that healthy controls were able to successfully learn categories under all conditions. For our patients with aphasia, two patterns of performance arose. One subgroup of patients was able to maintain learning across task manipulations and conditions. The other subgroup of patients demonstrated a sensitivity to task complexity, learning successfully only in the typical training conditions. Conclusions Results support the hypothesis that impairments of general learning are present in aphasia. Some patients demonstrated the ability to extract category information under complex training conditions, while others learned only under conditions that were simplified and emphasized salient category features. Overall, the typical training condition facilitated learning for all participants. Findings have implications for therapy, which are discussed. PMID:23695914

  3. 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.

  4. Modified CC-LR algorithm with three diverse feature sets for motor imagery tasks classification in EEG based brain-computer interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siuly; Li, Yan; Paul Wen, Peng

    2014-03-01

    Motor imagery (MI) tasks classification provides an important basis for designing brain-computer interface (BCI) systems. If the MI tasks are reliably distinguished through identifying typical patterns in electroencephalography (EEG) data, a motor disabled people could communicate with a device by composing sequences of these mental states. In our earlier study, we developed a cross-correlation based logistic regression (CC-LR) algorithm for the classification of MI tasks for BCI applications, but its performance was not satisfactory. This study develops a modified version of the CC-LR algorithm exploring a suitable feature set that can improve the performance. The modified CC-LR algorithm uses the C3 electrode channel (in the international 10-20 system) as a reference channel for the cross-correlation (CC) technique and applies three diverse feature sets separately, as the input to the logistic regression (LR) classifier. The present algorithm investigates which feature set is the best to characterize the distribution of MI tasks based EEG data. This study also provides an insight into how to select a reference channel for the CC technique with EEG signals considering the anatomical structure of the human brain. The proposed algorithm is compared with eight of the most recently reported well-known methods including the BCI III Winner algorithm. The findings of this study indicate that the modified CC-LR algorithm has potential to improve the identification performance of MI tasks in BCI systems. The results demonstrate that the proposed technique provides a classification improvement over the existing methods tested. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Is Performance in Task-Cuing Experiments Mediated by Task Set Selection or Associative Compound Retrieval?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrest, Charlotte L. D.; Monsell, Stephen; McLaren, Ian P. L.

    2014-01-01

    Task-cuing experiments are usually intended to explore control of task set. But when small stimulus sets are used, they plausibly afford learning of the response associated with a combination of cue and stimulus, without reference to tasks. In 3 experiments we presented the typical trials of a task-cuing experiment: a cue (colored shape) followed,…

  6. The impact of task demand on visual word recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, J; Zevin, J

    2014-07-11

    The left occipitotemporal cortex has been found sensitive to the hierarchy of increasingly complex features in visually presented words, from individual letters to bigrams and morphemes. However, whether this sensitivity is a stable property of the brain regions engaged by word recognition is still unclear. To address the issue, the current study investigated whether different task demands modify this sensitivity. Participants viewed real English words and stimuli with hierarchical word-likeness while performing a lexical decision task (i.e., to decide whether each presented stimulus is a real word) and a symbol detection task. General linear model and independent component analysis indicated strong activation in the fronto-parietal and temporal regions during the two tasks. Furthermore, the bilateral inferior frontal gyrus and insula showed significant interaction effects between task demand and stimulus type in the pseudoword condition. The occipitotemporal cortex showed strong main effects for task demand and stimulus type, but no sensitivity to the hierarchical word-likeness was found. These results suggest that different task demands on semantic, phonological and orthographic processes can influence the involvement of the relevant regions during visual word recognition. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Spectral feature extraction of EEG signals and pattern recognition during mental tasks of 2-D cursor movements for BCI using SVM and ANN.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bascil, M Serdar; Tesneli, Ahmet Y; Temurtas, Feyzullah

    2016-09-01

    Brain computer interface (BCI) is a new communication way between man and machine. It identifies mental task patterns stored in electroencephalogram (EEG). So, it extracts brain electrical activities recorded by EEG and transforms them machine control commands. The main goal of BCI is to make available assistive environmental devices for paralyzed people such as computers and makes their life easier. This study deals with feature extraction and mental task pattern recognition on 2-D cursor control from EEG as offline analysis approach. The hemispherical power density changes are computed and compared on alpha-beta frequency bands with only mental imagination of cursor movements. First of all, power spectral density (PSD) features of EEG signals are extracted and high dimensional data reduced by principle component analysis (PCA) and independent component analysis (ICA) which are statistical algorithms. In the last stage, all features are classified with two types of support vector machine (SVM) which are linear and least squares (LS-SVM) and three different artificial neural network (ANN) structures which are learning vector quantization (LVQ), multilayer neural network (MLNN) and probabilistic neural network (PNN) and mental task patterns are successfully identified via k-fold cross validation technique.

  8. 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.

  9. Correlations between Motor Symptoms across Different Motor Tasks, Quantified via Random Forest Feature Classification in Parkinson’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Kuhner

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available BackgroundObjective assessments of Parkinson’s disease (PD patients’ motor state using motion capture techniques are still rarely used in clinical practice, even though they may improve clinical management. One major obstacle relates to the large dimensionality of motor abnormalities in PD. We aimed to extract global motor performance measures covering different everyday motor tasks, as a function of a clinical intervention, i.e., deep brain stimulation (DBS of the subthalamic nucleus.MethodsWe followed a data-driven, machine-learning approach and propose performance measures that employ Random Forests with probability distributions. We applied this method to 14 PD patients with DBS switched-off or -on, and 26 healthy control subjects performing the Timed Up and Go Test (TUG, the Functional Reach Test (FRT, a hand coordination task, walking 10-m straight, and a 90° curve.ResultsFor each motor task, a Random Forest identified a specific set of metrics that optimally separated PD off DBS from healthy subjects. We noted the highest accuracy (94.6% for standing up. This corresponded to a sensitivity of 91.5% to detect a PD patient off DBS, and a specificity of 97.2% representing the rate of correctly identified healthy subjects. We then calculated performance measures based on these sets of metrics and applied those results to characterize symptom severity in different motor tasks. Task-specific symptom severity measures correlated significantly with each other and with the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS, part III, correlation of r2 = 0.79. Agreement rates between different measures ranged from 79.8 to 89.3%.ConclusionThe close correlation of PD patients’ various motor abnormalities quantified by different, task-specific severity measures suggests that these abnormalities are only facets of the underlying one-dimensional severity of motor deficits. The identification and characterization of this underlying motor deficit

  10. Using Fractal and Local Binary Pattern Features for Classification of ECOG Motor Imagery Tasks Obtained from the Right Brain Hemisphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Fangzhou; Zhou, Weidong; Zhen, Yilin; Yuan, Qi; Wu, Qi

    2016-09-01

    The feature extraction and classification of brain signal is very significant in brain-computer interface (BCI). In this study, we describe an algorithm for motor imagery (MI) classification of electrocorticogram (ECoG)-based BCI. The proposed approach employs multi-resolution fractal measures and local binary pattern (LBP) operators to form a combined feature for characterizing an ECoG epoch recording from the right hemisphere of the brain. A classifier is trained by using the gradient boosting in conjunction with ordinary least squares (OLS) method. The fractal intercept, lacunarity and LBP features are extracted to classify imagined movements of either the left small finger or the tongue. Experimental results on dataset I of BCI competition III demonstrate the superior performance of our method. The cross-validation accuracy and accuracy is 90.6% and 95%, respectively. Furthermore, the low computational burden of this method makes it a promising candidate for real-time BCI systems.

  11. 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.

  12. On the use of LDA performance as a metric of feature extraction methods for a P300 BCI classification task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gareis, Iván; Atum, Yanina; Gentiletti, Gerardo; Acevedo, Rubén; Bañuelos, Verónica Medina; Rufiner, Leonardo

    2011-01-01

    Brain computer interfaces (BCIs) translate brain activity into computer commands. To enhance the performance of a BCI, it is necessary to improve the feature extraction techniques being applied to decode the users' intentions. Objective comparison methods are needed to analyze different feature extraction techniques. One possibility is to use the classifier performance as a comparative measure. In this work the effect of several variables that affect the behaviour of linear discriminant analysis (LDA) has been studied when used to distinguish between electroencephalographic signals with and without the presence of event related potentials (ERPs). The error rate (ER) and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) were used as performance estimators of LDA. The results show that the number of characteristics, the degree of balance of the training patterns set and the number of averaged trials affect the classifier's performance and therefore, must be considered in the design of the integrated system.

  13. 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.

  14. Neural processing of fearful and happy facial expressions during emotion-relevant and emotion-irrelevant tasks: a fixation-to-feature approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neath-Tavares, Karly N.; Itier, Roxane J.

    2017-01-01

    Research suggests an important role of the eyes and mouth for discriminating facial expressions of emotion. A gaze-contingent procedure was used to test the impact of fixation to facial features on the neural response to fearful, happy and neutral facial expressions in an emotion discrimination (Exp.1) and an oddball detection (Exp.2) task. The N170 was the only eye-sensitive ERP component, and this sensitivity did not vary across facial expressions. In both tasks, compared to neutral faces, responses to happy expressions were seen as early as 100–120ms occipitally, while responses to fearful expressions started around 150ms, on or after the N170, at both occipital and lateral-posterior sites. Analyses of scalp topographies revealed different distributions of these two emotion effects across most of the epoch. Emotion processing interacted with fixation location at different times between tasks. Results suggest a role of both the eyes and mouth in the neural processing of fearful expressions and of the mouth in the processing of happy expressions, before 350ms. PMID:27430934

  15. Features of Solving Retrospective (Successive Tasks of the Monitoring Subsystem in Systems for Strategic Control of the Regional Structure and Territorial Organization in the Agri-Food Sphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tkachenko Serhii A.

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The given article highlights features of solving retrospective (successive tasks of monitoring production and economic activity of the territorial-production system through a profound using of scientific principles in the developed and introduced enlarged block diagram of the control system for a functionally advanced solution of the task of monitoring labour force turnover at the entity in the agri-food sphere. Solving the task of monitoring the labour force turnover in the territorial-production system by means of electronic digital machines allows: to reduce the complexity of calculations performed by employees of Human Resources Department and make time for other research and control functions; to accelerate submission of necessary accounting and economic as well as analytical information on the labour force turnover at the entity in the agri-food sphere to consumers; increase the quality of accounting and economic as well as analytical information by eliminating errors, which occur at manual calculation; to build a real scientific basis for developing measures of technical, organizational and socio-economic nature aimed at reducing the labour force turnover. The given list of issues solved at development of the monitoring subsystem in strategic control systems of the regional structure and territorial organization of the agri-food sphere is not complete, the use of industrial methods for creating a monitoring subsystem, training specialists and a number of other issues, which are no less important, should be mentioned as well.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Comparing observer models and feature selection methods for a task-based statistical assessment of digital breast tomsynthesis in reconstruction space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Subok; Zhang, George Z.; Zeng, Rongping; Myers, Kyle J.

    2014-03-01

    A task-based assessment of image quality1 for digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) can be done in either the projected or reconstructed data space. As the choice of observer models and feature selection methods can vary depending on the type of task and data statistics, we previously investigated the performance of two channelized- Hotelling observer models in conjunction with 2D Laguerre-Gauss (LG) and two implementations of partial least squares (PLS) channels along with that of the Hotelling observer in binary detection tasks involving DBT projections.2, 3 The difference in these observers lies in how the spatial correlation in DBT angular projections is incorporated in the observer's strategy to perform the given task. In the current work, we extend our method to the reconstructed data space of DBT. We investigate how various model observers including the aforementioned compare for performing the binary detection of a spherical signal embedded in structured breast phantoms with the use of DBT slices reconstructed via filtered back projection. We explore how well the model observers incorporate the spatial correlation between different numbers of reconstructed DBT slices while varying the number of projections. For this, relatively small and large scan angles (24° and 96°) are used for comparison. Our results indicate that 1) given a particular scan angle, the number of projections needed to achieve the best performance for each observer is similar across all observer/channel combinations, i.e., Np = 25 for scan angle 96° and Np = 13 for scan angle 24°, and 2) given these sufficient numbers of projections, the number of slices for each observer to achieve the best performance differs depending on the channel/observer types, which is more pronounced in the narrow scan angle case.

  19. Recurrence of task set-related MEG signal patterns during auditory working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Benjamin; Bledowski, Christoph; Rieder, Maria; Kaiser, Jochen

    2016-06-01

    Processing of auditory spatial and non-spatial information in working memory has been shown to rely on separate cortical systems. While previous studies have demonstrated differences in spatial versus non-spatial processing from the encoding of to-be-remembered stimuli onwards, here we investigated whether such differences would be detectable already prior to presentation of the sample stimulus. We analyzed broad-band magnetoencephalography data from 15 healthy adults during an auditory working memory paradigm starting with a visual cue indicating the task-relevant stimulus feature for a given trial (lateralization or pitch) and a subsequent 1.5-s pre-encoding phase. This was followed by a sample sound (0.2s), the delay phase (0.8s) and a test stimulus (0.2s) after which participants made a match/non-match decision. Linear discriminant functions were trained to decode task-specific signal patterns throughout the task, and temporal generalization was used to assess whether the neural codes discriminating between the tasks during the pre-encoding phase would recur during later task periods. The spatial versus non-spatial tasks could indeed be discriminated after the onset of the cue onwards, and decoders trained during the pre-encoding phase successfully discriminated the tasks during both sample stimulus encoding and during the delay phase. This demonstrates that task-specific neural codes are established already before the memorandum is presented and that the same patterns are reestablished during stimulus encoding and maintenance. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. 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…

  1. Primacy Performance of Normal and Retarded Children: Stimulus Familiarity or Spatial Memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, Lee

    1978-01-01

    Explores the effect of stimulus familiarity on the spatial primacy performance of normal and retarded children. Assumes that serial recall tasks reflect spatial memory rather than verbal rehearsal. (BD)

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. [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.

  5. Investigating Perfect Timesharing: The Relationship between IM-Compatible Tasks and Dual-Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halvorson, Kimberly M.; Ebner, Herschel; Hazeltine, Eliot

    2013-01-01

    Why are dual-task costs reduced with ideomotor (IM) compatible tasks (Greenwald & Shulman, 1973; Lien, Proctor & Allen, 2002)? In the present experiments, we first examine three different measures of single-task performance (pure single-task blocks, mixed blocks, and long stimulus onset asynchrony [SOA] trials in dual-task blocks) and two…

  6. The perception of regularity in an isochronous stimulus in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Aa, J.; Honing, H.; ten Cate, C.

    2015-01-01

    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

  7. 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...

  8. 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...

  9. In support of a distinction between voluntary and stimulus-driven control: A review of the literature on proportion congruent effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie M. Bugg

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive control is by now a large umbrella term referring collectively to multiple processes that plan and coordinate actions to meet task goals. A common feature of paradigms that engage cognitive control is the task requirement to select relevant information despite a habitual tendency (or bias to select goal-irrelevant information. At least since the 70s, researchers have employed proportion congruent manipulations to experimentally establish selection biases and evaluate the mechanisms used to control attention. Proportion congruent manipulations vary the frequency with which irrelevant information conflicts (i.e., is incongruent with relevant information. The purpose of this review is to summarize the growing body of literature on proportion congruent effects across selective attention paradigms, beginning first with Stroop, and then describing parallel effects in flanker and task-switching paradigms. The review chronologically tracks the expansion of the proportion congruent manipulation from its initial implementation at the list-wide level, to more recent implementations at the item-specific and context-specific levels. An important theoretical aim is demonstrating that proportion congruent effects at different levels (e.g., list-wide vs. item or context-specific support a distinction between voluntary forms of cognitive control, which operate based on anticipatory information, and relatively automatic or reflexive forms of cognitive control, which are rapidly triggered by the processing of particular stimuli or stimulus features. A further aim is to highlight those proportion congruent manipulations that allow researchers to dissociate stimulus-driven control from other stimulus-driven processes (e.g., S-R responding; episodic retrieval. We conclude by discussing the utility of proportion congruent manipulations for exploring the distinction between voluntary control and stimulus-driven control in other relevant paradigms.

  10. Two Simon tasks with different sources of conflict: an ERP study of motion- and location-based compatibility effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galashan, Daniela; Wittfoth, Matthias; Fehr, Thorsten; Herrmann, Manfred

    2008-07-01

    Behavioral and electrophysiological correlates of two Simon tasks were examined using comparable stimuli but different task-irrelevant and conflict-inducing stimulus features. Whereas target shape was always the task-relevant stimulus attribute, either target location (location-based task) or motion direction within the target stimuli (motion-based task) was used as a source of conflict. Data from ten healthy participants who performed both tasks are presented. In the motion-based task the incompatible condition showed smaller P300 amplitudes at Pz than the compatible condition and the location-based task yielded a trend towards a reduced P300 amplitude in the incompatible condition. For both tasks, no P300 latency differences between the conditions were found at Pz. The results suggest that the motion-based task elicits behavioral and electrophysiological effects comparable with regular Simon tasks. As all stimuli in the motion-based Simon task were presented centrally the present data strongly argue against the attention-shifting account as an explanatory approach.

  11. 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.

  12. Abstract feature codes: The building blocks of the implicit learning system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eberhardt, Katharina; Esser, Sarah; Haider, Hilde

    2017-07-01

    According to the Theory of Event Coding (TEC; Hommel, Müsseler, Aschersleben, & Prinz, 2001), action and perception are represented in a shared format in the cognitive system by means of feature codes. In implicit sequence learning research, it is still common to make a conceptual difference between independent motor and perceptual sequences. This supposedly independent learning takes place in encapsulated modules (Keele, Ivry, Mayr, Hazeltine, & Heuer 2003) that process information along single dimensions. These dimensions have remained underspecified so far. It is especially not clear whether stimulus and response characteristics are processed in separate modules. Here, we suggest that feature dimensions as they are described in the TEC should be viewed as the basic content of modules of implicit learning. This means that the modules process all stimulus and response information related to certain feature dimensions of the perceptual environment. In 3 experiments, we investigated by means of a serial reaction time task the nature of the basic units of implicit learning. As a test case, we used stimulus location sequence learning. The results show that a stimulus location sequence and a response location sequence cannot be learned without interference (Experiment 2) unless one of the sequences can be coded via an alternative, nonspatial dimension (Experiment 3). These results support the notion that spatial location is one module of the implicit learning system and, consequently, that there are no separate processing units for stimulus versus response locations. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. 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.

  14. Associative cueing of attention through implicit feature-location binding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girardi, Giovanna; Nico, Daniele

    2017-09-01

    In order to assess associative learning between two task-irrelevant features in cueing spatial attention, we devised a task in which participants have to make an identity comparison between two sequential visual stimuli. Unbeknownst to them, location of the second stimulus could be predicted by the colour of the first or a concurrent sound. Albeit unnecessary to perform the identity-matching judgment the predictive features thus provided an arbitrary association favouring the spatial anticipation of the second stimulus. A significant advantage was found with faster responses at predicted compared to non-predicted locations. Results clearly demonstrated an associative cueing of attention via a second-order arbitrary feature/location association but with a substantial discrepancy depending on the sensory modality of the predictive feature. With colour as predictive feature, significant advantages emerged only after the completion of three blocks of trials. On the contrary, sound affected responses from the first block of trials and significant advantages were manifest from the beginning of the second. The possible mechanisms underlying the associative cueing of attention in both conditions are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Attention and alcohol cues: a role for medial parietal cortex and shifting away from alcohol features?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Edward Gladwin

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Attention plays a central role in theories of alcohol dependence; however, its precise role in alcohol-related biases is not yet clear. In the current study, social drinkers performed a spatial cueing task designed to evoke conflict between automatic processes due to incentive salience and control exerted to follow task-related goals. Such conflict is a potentially important task feature from the perspective of dual-process models of addiction. Subjects received instructions either to direct their attention towards pictures of alcoholic beverages, and away from non-alcohol beverages; or to direct their attention towards pictures of non-alcoholic beverages, and away from alcohol beverages. A probe stimulus was likely to appear at the attended location, so that both spatial and non-spatial interference was possible. Activation in medial parietal cortex was found during Approach Alcohol versus Avoid Alcohol blocks. This region is associated with the, possibly automatic, shifting of attention between stimulus features, suggesting that subjects may have shifted attention away from certain features of alcoholic cues when attention had to be directed towards an upcoming stimulus at their location. Further, activation in voxels close to this region was negatively correlated with riskier drinking behavior. A tentative interpretation of the results is that risky drinking may be associated with a reduced tendency to shift attention away from potentially distracting task-irrelevant alcohol cues. The results suggest novel hypotheses and directions for future study, in particular towards the potential therapeutic use of training the ability to shifting attention away from alcohol-related stimulus features.

  16. 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.

  17. Persistent Neuronal Firing in Primary Somatosensory Cortex in the Absence of Working Memory of Trial-Specific Features of the Sample Stimuli in a Haptic Working Memory Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Liping; Li, Xianchun; Hsiao, Steven S.; Bodner, Mark; Lenz, Fred; Zhou, Yong-Di

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies suggested that primary somatosensory (SI) neurons in well-trained monkeys participated in the haptic-haptic unimodal delayed matching-to-sample (DMS) task. In this study, 585 SI neurons were recorded in monkeys performing a task that was identical to that in the previous studies but without requiring discrimination and active…

  18. Richer Concepts are Better Remembered: Number of Features Effects in Free Recall

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian Scott Hargreaves

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available In four experiments, we tested the expectation that concepts associated with more semantic features would be better remembered than concepts associated with fewer semantic features. Using feature listing norms we selected sets of items for which people tend to list high numbers of features (high NoF and items for which people tend to list lower numbers of features (low NoF. Results showed more accurate free recall for high NoF concepts than for low NoF concepts in expected memory tasks (Experiments 1-3 and also in an unexpected memory task (Experiment 4. This effect was not the result of associative chaining between study items (Experiment 3, and can be attributed to the amount of item-specific processing that occurs at study (Experiment 4. These results provide evidence that stimulus-specific differences in processing at encoding have consequences for explicit memory retrieval.

  19. 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

  20. [Decision making and executive function in severe traumatic brain injured patients: validation of a decision-making task and correlated features].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiederkehr, S; Barat, M; Dehail, P; de Sèze, M; Lozes-Boudillon, S; Giroire, J-M

    2005-02-01

    At the chronic stage, severe traumatic brain injured (TBI) patients experience difficulty in making decisions. Several studies have demonstrated the involvement of the prefrontal cortex, in particular the orbitofrontal region, in decision-making. The aim of the present study was to validate a decision-making task in this population and to ascertain whether the components of their dysexecutive syndrome may affect their decision-making and lead to difficulties for social rehabilitation. Fifteen TBI patients and 15 controlled subjects matched for age, sex and years of education were assessed by a battery of executive tests (GREFEX) and by the gambling task (GT). The TBI subjects performed significantly worse than the controlled group in five out of six GREFEX tests. The TBI choices are significantly more disadvantageous than the choices of the control group when considering the three last blocks of 20 cards of the GT. The GT total score correlated significantly with execution time of the Stroop interference condition and the Trail Making Task B, as well as with the two measures (correct sequence span and number of crossed boxes) of the double condition of Baddeley's task. We postulate that executive functioning (supervisory attentional system) influence performance in the gambling task through mechanisms of inhibitory control, divided attention and working memory. Thus, this task seems to be determined by multiple factors; the process of decision-making may depend on frontal integrity.

  1. Impaired distractor inhibition on a selective attention task in unmedicated, depressed subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacQueen, G M; Tipper, S P; Young, L T; Joffe, R T; Levitt, A J

    2000-05-01

    Impaired distractor inhibition may contribute to the selective attention deficits observed in depressed patients, but studies to date have not tested the distractor inhibition theory against the possibility that processes such as transient memory review processes may account for the observed deficits. A negative priming paradigm can dissociate inhibition from such a potentially confounding process called object review. The negative priming task also isolates features of the distractor such as colour and location for independent examination. A computerized negative priming task was used in which colour, identification and location features of a stimulus and distractor were systematically manipulated across successive prime and probe trials. Thirty-two unmedicated subjects with DSM-IV diagnoses of non-psychotic unipolar depression were compared with 32 age, sex and IQ matched controls. Depressed subjects had reduced levels of negative priming for conditions where the colour feature of the stimulus was repeated across prime and probe trials but not when identity or location was the repeated feature. When both the colour and location feature were the repeated feature across trials, facilitation in response was apparent. The pattern of results supports studies that found reduced distractor inhibition in depressed subjects, and suggests that object review is intact in these subjects. Greater impairment in negative priming for colour versus location suggests that subjects may have greater impairment in the visual stream associated with processing colour features.

  2. 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.

  3. WE-EF-207-01: FEATURED PRESENTATION and BEST IN PHYSICS (IMAGING): Task-Driven Imaging for Cone-Beam CT in Interventional Guidance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gang, G; Stayman, J; Ouadah, S; Siewerdsen, J; Ehtiati, T

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This work introduces a task-driven imaging framework that utilizes a patient-specific anatomical model, mathematical definition of the imaging task, and a model of the imaging system to prospectively design acquisition and reconstruction techniques that maximize task-based imaging performance. Utility of the framework is demonstrated in the joint optimization of tube current modulation and view-dependent reconstruction kernel in filtered-backprojection reconstruction and non-circular orbit design in model-based reconstruction. Methods: The system model is based on a cascaded systems analysis of cone-beam CT capable of predicting the spatially varying noise and resolution characteristics as a function of the anatomical model and a wide range of imaging parameters. Detectability index for a non-prewhitening observer model is used as the objective function in a task-driven optimization. The combination of tube current and reconstruction kernel modulation profiles were identified through an alternating optimization algorithm where tube current was updated analytically followed by a gradient-based optimization of reconstruction kernel. The non-circular orbit is first parameterized as a linear combination of bases functions and the coefficients were then optimized using an evolutionary algorithm. The task-driven strategy was compared with conventional acquisitions without modulation, using automatic exposure control, and in a circular orbit. Results: The task-driven strategy outperformed conventional techniques in all tasks investigated, improving the detectability of a spherical lesion detection task by an average of 50% in the interior of a pelvis phantom. The non-circular orbit design successfully mitigated photon starvation effects arising from a dense embolization coil in a head phantom, improving the conspicuity of an intracranial hemorrhage proximal to the coil. Conclusion: The task-driven imaging framework leverages a knowledge of the imaging task within

  4. WE-EF-207-01: FEATURED PRESENTATION and BEST IN PHYSICS (IMAGING): Task-Driven Imaging for Cone-Beam CT in Interventional Guidance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gang, G; Stayman, J; Ouadah, S; Siewerdsen, J [Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD (United States); Ehtiati, T [Siemens Healthcare AX Division, Erlangen, DE (Germany)

    2015-06-15

    Purpose: This work introduces a task-driven imaging framework that utilizes a patient-specific anatomical model, mathematical definition of the imaging task, and a model of the imaging system to prospectively design acquisition and reconstruction techniques that maximize task-based imaging performance. Utility of the framework is demonstrated in the joint optimization of tube current modulation and view-dependent reconstruction kernel in filtered-backprojection reconstruction and non-circular orbit design in model-based reconstruction. Methods: The system model is based on a cascaded systems analysis of cone-beam CT capable of predicting the spatially varying noise and resolution characteristics as a function of the anatomical model and a wide range of imaging parameters. Detectability index for a non-prewhitening observer model is used as the objective function in a task-driven optimization. The combination of tube current and reconstruction kernel modulation profiles were identified through an alternating optimization algorithm where tube current was updated analytically followed by a gradient-based optimization of reconstruction kernel. The non-circular orbit is first parameterized as a linear combination of bases functions and the coefficients were then optimized using an evolutionary algorithm. The task-driven strategy was compared with conventional acquisitions without modulation, using automatic exposure control, and in a circular orbit. Results: The task-driven strategy outperformed conventional techniques in all tasks investigated, improving the detectability of a spherical lesion detection task by an average of 50% in the interior of a pelvis phantom. The non-circular orbit design successfully mitigated photon starvation effects arising from a dense embolization coil in a head phantom, improving the conspicuity of an intracranial hemorrhage proximal to the coil. Conclusion: The task-driven imaging framework leverages a knowledge of the imaging task within

  5. Stimulus homogeneity enhances implicit learning: evidence from contextual cueing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldmann-Wüstefeld, Tobias; Schubö, Anna

    2014-04-01

    Visual search for a target object is faster if the target is embedded in a repeatedly presented invariant configuration of distractors ('contextual cueing'). It has also been shown that the homogeneity of a context affects the efficiency of visual search: targets receive prioritized processing when presented in a homogeneous context compared to a heterogeneous context, presumably due to grouping processes at early stages of visual processing. The present study investigated in three Experiments whether context homogeneity also affects contextual cueing. In Experiment 1, context homogeneity varied on three levels of the task-relevant dimension (orientation) and contextual cueing was most pronounced for context configurations with high orientation homogeneity. When context homogeneity varied on three levels of the task-irrelevant dimension (color) and orientation homogeneity was fixed, no modulation of contextual cueing was observed: high orientation homogeneity led to large contextual cueing effects (Experiment 2) and low orientation homogeneity led to low contextual cueing effects (Experiment 3), irrespective of color homogeneity. Enhanced contextual cueing for homogeneous context configurations suggest that grouping processes do not only affect visual search but also implicit learning. We conclude that memory representation of context configurations are more easily acquired when context configurations can be processed as larger, grouped perceptual units. However, this form of implicit perceptual learning is only improved by stimulus homogeneity when stimulus homogeneity facilitates grouping processes on a dimension that is currently relevant in the task. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Performance Enhancements Under Dual-task Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, A. F.; Wickens, C. D.; Donchin, E.

    1984-01-01

    Research on dual-task performance has been concerned with delineating the antecedent conditions which lead to dual-task decrements. Capacity models of attention, which propose that a hypothetical resource structure underlies performance, have been employed as predictive devices. These models predict that tasks which require different processing resources can be more successfully time shared than tasks which require common resources. The conditions under which such dual-task integrality can be fostered were assessed in a study in which three factors likely to influence the integrality between tasks were manipulated: inter-task redundancy, the physical proximity of tasks and the task relevant objects. Twelve subjects participated in three experimental sessions in which they performed both single and dual-tasks. The primary task was a pursuit step tracking task. The secondary tasks required the discrimination between different intensities or different spatial positions of a stimulus. The results are discussed in terms of a model of dual-task integrality.

  7. 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.

  8. Dyslexic adults can learn from repeated stimulus presentation but have difficulties in excluding external noise.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel L Beattie

    Full Text Available We examined whether the characteristic impairments of dyslexia are due to a deficit in excluding external noise or a deficit in taking advantage of repeated stimulus presentation. We compared non-impaired adults and adults with poor reading performance on a visual letter detection task that varied two aspects: the presence or absence of background visual noise, and a small or large stimulus set. There was no interaction between group and stimulus set size, indicating that the poor readers took advantage of repeated stimulus presentation as well as the non-impaired readers. The poor readers had higher thresholds than non-impaired readers in the presence of high external noise, but not in the absence of external noise. The results support the hypothesis that an external noise exclusion deficit, not a perceptual anchoring deficit, impairs reading for adults.

  9. Can responses to basic non-numerical visual features explain neural numerosity responses?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harvey, Ben M; Dumoulin, Serge O

    2017-04-01

    Humans and many animals can distinguish between stimuli that differ in numerosity, the number of objects in a set. Human and macaque parietal lobes contain neurons that respond to changes in stimulus numerosity. However, basic non-numerical visual features can affect neural responses to and perception of numerosity, and visual features often co-vary with numerosity. Therefore, it is debated whether numerosity or co-varying low-level visual features underlie neural and behavioral responses to numerosity. To test the hypothesis that non-numerical visual features underlie neural numerosity responses in a human parietal numerosity map, we analyze responses to a group of numerosity stimulus configurations that have the same numerosity progression but vary considerably in their non-numerical visual features. Using ultra-high-field (7T) fMRI, we measure responses to these stimulus configurations in an area of posterior parietal cortex whose responses are believed to reflect numerosity-selective activity. We describe an fMRI analysis method to distinguish between alternative models of neural response functions, following a population receptive field (pRF) modeling approach. For each stimulus configuration, we first quantify the relationships between numerosity and several non-numerical visual features that have been proposed to underlie performance in numerosity discrimination tasks. We then determine how well responses to these non-numerical visual features predict the observed fMRI responses, and compare this to the predictions of responses to numerosity. We demonstrate that a numerosity response model predicts observed responses more accurately than models of responses to simple non-numerical visual features. As such, neural responses in cognitive processing need not reflect simpler properties of early sensory inputs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Overnight improvements in two REM sleep-sensitive tasks are associated with both REM and NREM sleep changes, sleep spindle features, and awakenings for dream recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, T; O'Reilly, C; Carr, M; Dumel, G; Godin, I; Solomonova, E; Lara-Carrasco, J; Blanchette-Carrière, C; Paquette, T

    2015-07-01

    Memory consolidation is associated with sleep physiology but the contribution of specific sleep stages remains controversial. To clarify the contribution of REM sleep, participants were administered two REM sleep-sensitive tasks to determine if associated changes occurred only in REM sleep. Twenty-two participants (7 men) were administered the Corsi Block Tapping and Tower of Hanoi tasks prior to and again after a night of sleep. Task improvers and non-improvers were compared for sleep structure, sleep spindles, and dream recall. Control participants (N = 15) completed the tasks twice during the day without intervening sleep. Overnight Corsi Block improvement was associated with more REM sleep whereas Tower of Hanoi improvement was associated with more N2 sleep. Corsi Block improvement correlated positively with %REM sleep and Tower of Hanoi improvement with %N2 sleep. Post-hoc analyses suggest Tower of Hanoi effects-but not Corsi Block effects-are due to trait differences. Sleep spindle density was associated with Tower of Hanoi improvement whereas spindle amplitude correlated with Corsi Block improvement. Number of REM awakenings for dream reporting (but not dream recall per se) was associated with Corsi Block, but not Tower of Hanoi, improvement but was confounded with REM sleep time. This non-replication of one of 2 REM-sensitive task effects challenges both 'dual-process' and 'sequential' or 'sleep organization' models of sleep-dependent learning and points rather to capacity limitations on REM sleep. Experimental awakenings for sampling dream mentation may not perturb sleep-dependent learning effects; they may even enhance them. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Decoding task-based attentional modulation during face categorization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Yu-Chin; Esterman, Michael; Han, Yuefeng; Rosen, Heather; Yantis, Steven

    2011-05-01

    Attention is a neurocognitive mechanism that selects task-relevant sensory or mnemonic information to achieve current behavioral goals. Attentional modulation of cortical activity has been observed when attention is directed to specific locations, features, or objects. However, little is known about how high-level categorization task set modulates perceptual representations. In the current study, observers categorized faces by gender (male vs. female) or race (Asian vs. White). Each face was perceptually ambiguous in both dimensions, such that categorization of one dimension demanded selective attention to task-relevant information within the face. We used multivoxel pattern classification to show that task-specific modulations evoke reliably distinct spatial patterns of activity within three face-selective cortical regions (right fusiform face area and bilateral occipital face areas). This result suggests that patterns of activity in these regions reflect not only stimulus-specific (i.e., faces vs. houses) responses but also task-specific (i.e., race vs. gender) attentional modulation. Furthermore, exploratory whole-brain multivoxel pattern classification (using a searchlight procedure) revealed a network of dorsal fronto-parietal regions (left middle frontal gyrus and left inferior and superior parietal lobule) that also exhibit distinct patterns for the two task sets, suggesting that these regions may represent abstract goals during high-level categorization tasks.

  12. 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.

  13. Occlusion for stimulus deprivation amblyopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonio-Santos, Aileen; Vedula, Satyanarayana S; Hatt, Sarah R; Powell, Christine

    2014-02-06

    Stimulus deprivation amblyopia (SDA) develops due to an obstruction to the passage of light secondary to a condition such as cataract. The obstruction prevents formation of a clear image on the retina. SDA can be resistant to treatment, leading to poor visual prognosis. SDA probably constitutes less than 3% of all amblyopia cases, although precise estimates of prevalence are unknown. In developed countries, most patients present under the age of one year; in less developed parts of the world patients are likely to be older at the time of presentation. The mainstay of treatment is removal of the cataract and then occlusion of the better-seeing eye, but regimens vary, can be difficult to execute, and traditionally are believed to lead to disappointing results. Our objective was to evaluate the effectiveness of occlusion therapy for SDA in an attempt to establish realistic treatment outcomes. Where data were available, we also planned to examine evidence of any dose response effect and to assess the effect of the duration, severity, and causative factor on the size and direction of the treatment effect. We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group Trials Register) (The Cochrane Library 2013, Issue 9), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to October 2013), EMBASE (January 1980 to October 2013), the Latin American and Caribbean Literature on Health Sciences (LILACS) (January 1982 to October 2013), PubMed (January 1946 to October 2013), the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) (www.controlled-trials.com ), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 28 October 2013. We planned to include randomized and quasi-randomized controlled

  14. Levels of processing and Eye Movements: A Stimulus driven approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mulvey, Fiona Bríd

    2014-01-01

    movements can be controlled either by bottom up stimulus properties or by top down cognitive control, studies have compared eye movements in real world tasks and searched for indicators of cognitive load or level of attention when task demands increase. Extracting the effects of cognitive processing on eye......The aim of this research is to investigate the explication of levels of attention through eye movement parameters. Previous research from disparate fields have suggested that eye movements are related to cognitive processing, however, the exact nature of the relationship is unclear. Since eye...... to investigate individual differences in levels of processing within the normal population using existing constructs and tests of cognitive style. Study 4 investigates these stimuli and the eye movements of a clinical group with known interruption to the dorsal stream of processing, and subsequent isolated...

  15. Does bimodal stimulus presentation increase ERP components usable in BCIs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurlings, Marieke E.; Brouwer, Anne-Marie; Van Erp, Jan B. F.; Blankertz, Benjamin; Werkhoven, Peter J.

    2012-08-01

    Event-related potential (ERP)-based brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) employ differences in brain responses to attended and ignored stimuli. Typically, visual stimuli are used. Tactile stimuli have recently been suggested as a gaze-independent alternative. Bimodal stimuli could evoke additional brain activity due to multisensory integration which may be of use in BCIs. We investigated the effect of visual-tactile stimulus presentation on the chain of ERP components, BCI performance (classification accuracies and bitrates) and participants’ task performance (counting of targets). Ten participants were instructed to navigate a visual display by attending (spatially) to targets in sequences of either visual, tactile or visual-tactile stimuli. We observe that attending to visual-tactile (compared to either visual or tactile) stimuli results in an enhanced early ERP component (N1). This bimodal N1 may enhance BCI performance, as suggested by a nonsignificant positive trend in offline classification accuracies. A late ERP component (P300) is reduced when attending to visual-tactile compared to visual stimuli, which is consistent with the nonsignificant negative trend of participants’ task performance. We discuss these findings in the light of affected spatial attention at high-level compared to low-level stimulus processing. Furthermore, we evaluate bimodal BCIs from a practical perspective and for future applications.

  16. 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…

  17. 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).

  18. The influence of attention and reward on the learning of stimulus-response associations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vartak, Devavrat; Jeurissen, Danique; Self, Matthew W; Roelfsema, Pieter R

    2017-01-01

    We can learn new tasks by listening to a teacher, but we can also learn by trial-and-error. Here, we investigate the factors that determine how participants learn new stimulus-response mappings by trial-and-error. Does learning in human observers comply with reinforcement learning theories, which

  19. The Emergence of Visual Awareness: Temporal Dynamics in Relation to Task and Mask Type

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiefer, Markus; Kammer, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    One aspect of consciousness phenomena, the temporal emergence of visual awareness, has been subject of a controversial debate. How can visual awareness, that is the experiential quality of visual stimuli, be characterized best? Is there a sharp discontinuous or dichotomous transition between unaware and fully aware states, or does awareness emerge gradually encompassing intermediate states? Previous studies yielded conflicting results and supported both dichotomous and gradual views. It is well conceivable that these conflicting results are more than noise, but reflect the dynamic nature of the temporal emergence of visual awareness. Using a psychophysical approach, the present research tested whether the emergence of visual awareness is context-dependent with a temporal two-alternative forced choice task. During backward masking of word targets, it was assessed whether the relative temporal sequence of stimulus thresholds is modulated by the task (stimulus presence, letter case, lexical decision, and semantic category) and by mask type. Four masks with different similarity to the target features were created. Psychophysical functions were then fitted to the accuracy data in the different task conditions as a function of the stimulus mask SOA in order to determine the inflection point (conscious threshold of each feature) and slope of the psychophysical function (transition from unaware to aware within each feature). Depending on feature-mask similarity, thresholds in the different tasks were highly dispersed suggesting a graded transition from unawareness to awareness or had less differentiated thresholds indicating that clusters of features probed by the tasks quite simultaneously contribute to the percept. The latter observation, although not compatible with the notion of a sharp all-or-none transition between unaware and aware states, suggests a less gradual or more discontinuous emergence of awareness. Analyses of slopes of the fitted psychophysical functions

  20. Stimulus-dependent effects on right ear advantage in schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smucny J

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Jason Smucny,1,3 Korey Wylie,3 Jason Tregellas1–31Neuroscience Program, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, 2Research Science, Denver VA Medical, Center, 3Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, USABackground: When presented with different sounds in each ear (dichotic listening, healthy subjects typically show a preference for stimuli heard in the right ear, an effect termed "right ear advantage". Previous studies examining right ear advantage in schizophrenia have been inconsistent, showing either decreased or increased advantage relative to comparison subjects. Given evidence for enhanced semantic processing in schizophrenia, some of this inconsistency may be due to the type of stimuli presented (words or syllables. The present study examined right ear advantage in patients and controls using both words and syllables as stimuli.Methods: Right ear advantage was compared between 20 patients with schizophrenia and 17 healthy controls. Two versions of the task were used, ie, a consonant-vowel pairing task and a fused rhymed words task.Results: A significant group × task interaction was observed. Relative to healthy controls, patients showed a greater difference on the syllable-based task compared with the word-based task. The number of distractors marked during the syllable-based task was inversely correlated with score on the Global Assessment of Function Scale.Conclusion: The findings are consistent with a left hemisphere dysfunction in schizophrenia, but also suggest that differences may be stimulus-specific, with a relative sparing of the deficit in the context of word stimuli. Performance may be related to measures of social, occupational, and psychological function.Keywords: schizophrenia, right ear advantage, dichotic, distraction

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Task set induces dynamic reallocation of resources in visual short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheremata, Summer L; Shomstein, Sarah

    2017-08-01

    Successful interaction with the environment requires the ability to flexibly allocate resources to different locations in the visual field. Recent evidence suggests that visual short-term memory (VSTM) resources are distributed asymmetrically across the visual field based upon task demands. Here, we propose that context, rather than the stimulus itself, determines asymmetrical distribution of VSTM resources. To test whether context modulates the reallocation of resources to the right visual field, task set, defined by memory-load, was manipulated to influence visual short-term memory performance. Performance was measured for single-feature objects embedded within predominantly single- or two-feature memory blocks. Therefore, context was varied to determine whether task set directly predicts changes in visual field biases. In accord with the dynamic reallocation of resources hypothesis, task set, rather than aspects of the physical stimulus, drove improvements in performance in the right- visual field. Our results show, for the first time, that preparation for upcoming memory demands directly determines how resources are allocated across the visual field.

  8. Search asymmetry: a diagnostic for preattentive processing of separable features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treisman, A; Souther, J

    1985-09-01

    The search rate for a target among distractors may vary dramatically depending on which stimulus plays the role of target and which that of distractors. For example, the time required to find a circle distinguished by an intersecting line is independent of the number of regular circles in the display, whereas the time to find a regular circle among circles with lines increases linearly with the number of distractors. The pattern of performance suggests parallel processing when the target has a unique distinguishing feature and serial self-terminating search when the target is distinguished only by the absence of a feature that is present in all the distractors. The results are consistent with feature-integration theory (Treisman & Gelade, 1980), which predicts that a single feature should be detected by the mere presence of activity in the relevant feature map, whereas tasks that require subjects to locate multiple instances of a feature demand focused attention. Search asymmetries may therefore offer a new diagnostic to identify the primitive features of early vision. Several candidate features are examined in this article: Colors, line ends or terminators, and closure (in the sense of a partly or wholly enclosed area) appear to be functional features; connectedness, intactness (absence of an intersecting line), and acute angles do not.

  9. Stimulus Evaluation, Event Preparation, and Motor Action Planning in Young Patients With Mild Spastic Cerebral Palsy : An Event-Related Brain Potential Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hakkarainen, Elina; Pirila, Silja; Kaartinen, Jukka; van der Meere, Jaap J.

    The study investigated stimulus evaluation time, event preparation, and motor action planning of patients with mild spastic cerebral palsy and a peer control group in the age range of 9 to 18 years. To this end, participants were carrying out a stimulus recognition task. Findings indicated an

  10. Setting and changing feature priorities in visual short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalogeropoulou, Zampeta; Jagadeesh, Akshay V; Ohl, Sven; Rolfs, Martin

    2017-04-01

    Many everyday tasks require prioritizing some visual features over competing ones, both during the selection from the rich sensory input and while maintaining information in visual short-term memory (VSTM). Here, we show that observers can change priorities in VSTM when, initially, they attended to a different feature. Observers reported from memory the orientation of one of two spatially interspersed groups of black and white gratings. Using colored pre-cues (presented before stimulus onset) and retro-cues (presented after stimulus offset) predicting the to-be-reported group, we manipulated observers' feature priorities independently during stimulus encoding and maintenance, respectively. Valid pre-cues reliably increased observers' performance (reduced guessing, increased report precision) as compared to neutral ones; invalid pre-cues had the opposite effect. Valid retro-cues also consistently improved performance (by reducing random guesses), even if the unexpected group suddenly became relevant (invalid-valid condition). Thus, feature-based attention can reshape priorities in VSTM protecting information that would otherwise be forgotten.

  11. 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

  12. Incorporating Data Link Features into a Multi-Function Display to Support Self-Separation and Spacing Tasks for General Aviation Pilots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Catherine A.; Murdoch, Jennifer L.; Consiglio, Maria C.; WIlliams, Daniel M.

    2005-01-01

    One objective of the Small Aircraft Transportation System (SATS) Higher Volume Operations (HVO) project is to increase the capacity and utilization of small non-towered, non-radar equipped airports by transferring traffic management activities to an automated Airport Management Module (AMM) and separation responsibilities to general aviation (GA) pilots. Implementation of this concept required the development of a research Multi-Function Display (MFD) to support the interactive communications between pilots and the AMM. The interface also had to accommodate traffic awareness, self-separation, and spacing tasks through dynamic messaging and symbology for flight path conformance and conflict detection and alerting (CDA). The display served as the mechanism to support the examination of the viability of executing instrument operations designed for SATS designated airports. Results of simulation and flight experiments conducted at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Langley Research Center indicate that the concept, as facilitated by the research MFD, did not increase pilots subjective workload levels or reduce their situation awareness (SA). Post-test usability assessments revealed that pilots preferred using the enhanced MFD to execute flight procedures, reporting improved SA over conventional instrument flight rules (IFR) procedures.

  13. Improving behavioral performance under full attention by adjusting response criteria to changes in stimulus predictability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katzner, Steffen; Treue, Stefan; Busse, Laura

    2012-09-04

    One of the key features of active perception is the ability to predict critical sensory events. Humans and animals can implicitly learn statistical regularities in the timing of events and use them to improve behavioral performance. Here, we used a signal detection approach to investigate whether such improvements in performance result from changes of perceptual sensitivity or rather from adjustments of a response criterion. In a regular sequence of briefly presented stimuli, human observers performed a noise-limited motion detection task by monitoring the stimulus stream for the appearance of a designated target direction. We manipulated target predictability through the hazard rate, which specifies the likelihood that a target is about to occur, given it has not occurred so far. Analyses of response accuracy revealed that improvements in performance could be accounted for by adjustments of the response criterion; a growing hazard rate was paralleled by an increasing tendency to report the presence of a target. In contrast, the hazard rate did not affect perceptual sensitivity. Consistent with previous research, we also found that reaction time decreases as the hazard rate grows. A simple rise-to-threshold model could well describe this decrease and attribute predictability effects to threshold adjustments rather than changes in information supply. We conclude that, even under conditions of full attention and constant perceptual sensitivity, behavioral performance can be optimized by dynamically adjusting the response criterion to meet ongoing changes in the likelihood of a target.

  14. Perceptual load vs. dilution: the roles of attentional focus, stimulus category, and target predictability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhe eChen

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Many studies have shown that increasing the number of neutral stimuli in a display decreases distractor interference. This result has been interpreted within two different frameworks; a perceptual load account, based on a reduction in spare resources, and a dilution account, based on a degradation in distractor representation and/or an increase in crosstalk between the distractor and the neutral stimuli that contain visually similar features. In four experiments, we systematically manipulated the extent of attentional focus, stimulus category, and preknowledge of the target to examine how these factors would interact with the display set size to influence the degree of distractor processing. Display set size did not affect the degree of distractor processing in all situations. Increasing the number of neutral items decreased distractor processing only when a task induced a broad attentional focus that included the neutral stimuli, when the neutral stimuli were in the same category as the target and distractor, and when the preknowledge of the target was insufficient to guide attention to the target efficiently. These results suggest that the effect of neutral stimuli on the degree of distractor processing is more complex than previously assumed. They provide new insight into the competitive interactions between bottom-up and top-down processes that govern the efficiency of visual selective attention.

  15. Perceptual load vs. dilution: the roles of attentional focus, stimulus category, and target predictability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Zhe; Cave, Kyle R

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have shown that increasing the number of neutral stimuli in a display decreases distractor interference. This result has been interpreted within two different frameworks; a perceptual load account, based on a reduction in spare resources, and a dilution account, based on a degradation in distractor representation and/or an increase in crosstalk between the distractor and the neutral stimuli that contain visually similar features. In four experiments, we systematically manipulated the extent of attentional focus, stimulus category, and preknowledge of the target to examine how these factors would interact with the display set size to influence the degree of distractor processing. Display set size did not affect the degree of distractor processing in all situations. Increasing the number of neutral items decreased distractor processing only when a task induced a broad attentional focus that included the neutral stimuli, when the neutral stimuli were in the same category as the target and distractor, and when the preknowledge of the target was insufficient to guide attention to the target efficiently. These results suggest that the effect of neutral stimuli on the degree of distractor processing is more complex than previously assumed. They provide new insight into the competitive interactions between bottom-up and top-down processes that govern the efficiency of visual selective attention.

  16. 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

  17. Supporting complex search tasks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gäde, Maria; Hall, Mark; Huurdeman, Hugo

    2015-01-01

    , is fragmented at best. The workshop addressed the many open research questions: What are the obvious use cases and applications of complex search? What are essential features of work tasks and search tasks to take into account? And how do these evolve over time? With a multitude of information, varying from...

  18. 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"…

  19. 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

  20. 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…

  1. 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

  2. Pre-stimulus BOLD-network activation modulates EEG spectral activity during working memory retention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mara eKottlow

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Working memory (WM processes depend on our momentary mental state and therefore exhibit considerable fluctuations. Here, we investigate the interplay of task-preparatory and task-related brain activity as represented by pre-stimulus BOLD-fluctuations and spectral EEG from the retention periods of a visual WM task. Visual WM is used to maintain sensory information in the brain enabling the performance of cognitive operations and is associated with mental health.We tested 22 subjects simultaneously with EEG and fMRI while performing a visuo-verbal Sternberg task with two different loads, allowing for the temporal separation of preparation, encoding, retention and retrieval periods.Four temporally coherent networks - the default mode network (DMN, the dorsal attention, the right and the left WM network - were extracted from the continuous BOLD data by means of a group ICA. Subsequently, the modulatory effect of these networks’ pre-stimulus activation upon retention-related EEG activity in the theta, alpha and beta frequencies was analyzed. The obtained results are informative in the context of state-dependent information processing.We were able to replicate two well-known load-dependent effects: the frontal-midline theta increase during the task and the decrease of pre-stimulus DMN activity. As our main finding, these two measures seem to depend on each other as the significant negative correlations at frontal-midline channels suggested. Thus, suppressed pre-stimulus DMN levels facilitated later task related frontal midline theta increases. In general, based on previous findings that neuronal coupling in different frequency bands may underlie distinct functions in WM retention, our results suggest that processes reflected by spectral oscillations during retention seem not only to be online synchronized with activity in different attention-related networks but are also modulated by activity in these networks during preparation intervals.

  3. The role of the right superior temporal gyrus in stimulus-centered spatial processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah-Basak, Priyanka P; Chen, Peii; Caulfield, Kevin; Medina, Jared; Hamilton, Roy H

    2018-05-01

    Although emerging neuropsychological evidence supports the involvement of temporal areas, and in particular the right superior temporal gyrus (STG), in allocentric neglect deficits, the role of STG in healthy spatial processing remains elusive. While several functional brain imaging studies have demonstrated involvement of the STG in tasks involving explicit stimulus-centered judgments, prior rTMS studies targeting the right STG did not find the expected neglect-like rightward bias in size judgments using the conventional landmark task. The objective of the current study was to investigate whether disruption of the right STG using inhibitory repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) could impact stimulus-centered, allocentric spatial processing in healthy individuals. A lateralized version of the landmark task was developed to accentuate the dissociation between viewer-centered and stimulus-centered reference frames. We predicted that inhibiting activity in the right STG would decrease accuracy because of induced rightward bias centered on the line stimulus irrespective of its viewer-centered or egocentric locations. Eleven healthy, right-handed adults underwent the lateralized landmark task. After viewing each stimulus, participants had to judge whether the line was bisected, or whether the left (left-long trials) or the right segment (right-long trials) of the line was longer. Participants repeated the task before (pre-rTMS) and after (post-rTMS) receiving 20 min of 1 Hz rTMS over the right STG, the right supramarginal gyrus (SMG), and the vertex (a control site) during three separate visits. Linear mixed models for binomial data were generated with either accuracy or judgment errors as dependent variables, to compare 1) performance across trial types (bisection, non-bisection), and 2) pre- vs. post-rTMS performance between the vertex and the STG and the vertex and the SMG. Line eccentricity (z = 4.31, p right-long type by 10.7% on bisection

  4. 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.

  5. Benefits of stimulus congruency for multisensory facilitation of visual learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robyn S Kim

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Studies of perceptual learning have largely focused on unisensory stimuli. However, multisensory interactions are ubiquitous in perception, even at early processing stages, and thus can potentially play a role in learning. Here, we examine the effect of auditory-visual congruency on visual learning. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS: Subjects were trained over five days on a visual motion coherence detection task with either congruent audiovisual, or incongruent audiovisual stimuli. Comparing performance on visual-only trials, we find that training with congruent audiovisual stimuli produces significantly better learning than training with incongruent audiovisual stimuli or with only visual stimuli. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This advantage from stimulus congruency during training suggests that the benefits of multisensory training may result from audiovisual interactions at a perceptual rather than cognitive level.

  6. Different Neuroplasticity for Task Targets and Distractors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spingath, Elsie Y.; Kang, Hyun Sug; Plummer, Thane; Blake, David T.

    2011-01-01

    Adult learning-induced sensory cortex plasticity results in enhanced action potential rates in neurons that have the most relevant information for the task, or those that respond strongly to one sensory stimulus but weakly to its comparison stimulus. Current theories suggest this plasticity is caused when target stimulus evoked activity is enhanced by reward signals from neuromodulatory nuclei. Prior work has found evidence suggestive of nonselective enhancement of neural responses, and suppression of responses to task distractors, but the differences in these effects between detection and discrimination have not been directly tested. Using cortical implants, we defined physiological responses in macaque somatosensory cortex during serial, matched, detection and discrimination tasks. Nonselective increases in neural responsiveness were observed during detection learning. Suppression of responses to task distractors was observed during discrimination learning, and this suppression was specific to cortical locations that sampled responses to the task distractor before learning. Changes in receptive field size were measured as the area of skin that had a significant response to a constant magnitude stimulus, and these areal changes paralleled changes in responsiveness. From before detection learning until after discrimination learning, the enduring changes were selective suppression of cortical locations responsive to task distractors, and nonselective enhancement of responsiveness at cortical locations selective for target and control skin sites. A comparison of observations in prior studies with the observed plasticity effects suggests that the non-selective response enhancement and selective suppression suffice to explain known plasticity phenomena in simple spatial tasks. This work suggests that differential responsiveness to task targets and distractors in primary sensory cortex for a simple spatial detection and discrimination task arise from nonselective

  7. Different neuroplasticity for task targets and distractors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elsie Y Spingath

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Adult learning-induced sensory cortex plasticity results in enhanced action potential rates in neurons that have the most relevant information for the task, or those that respond strongly to one sensory stimulus but weakly to its comparison stimulus. Current theories suggest this plasticity is caused when target stimulus evoked activity is enhanced by reward signals from neuromodulatory nuclei. Prior work has found evidence suggestive of nonselective enhancement of neural responses, and suppression of responses to task distractors, but the differences in these effects between detection and discrimination have not been directly tested. Using cortical implants, we defined physiological responses in macaque somatosensory cortex during serial, matched, detection and discrimination tasks. Nonselective increases in neural responsiveness were observed during detection learning. Suppression of responses to task distractors was observed during discrimination learning, and this suppression was specific to cortical locations that sampled responses to the task distractor before learning. Changes in receptive field size were measured as the area of skin that had a significant response to a constant magnitude stimulus, and these areal changes paralleled changes in responsiveness. From before detection learning until after discrimination learning, the enduring changes were selective suppression of cortical locations responsive to task distractors, and nonselective enhancement of responsiveness at cortical locations selective for target and control skin sites. A comparison of observations in prior studies with the observed plasticity effects suggests that the non-selective response enhancement and selective suppression suffice to explain known plasticity phenomena in simple spatial tasks. This work suggests that differential responsiveness to task targets and distractors in primary sensory cortex for a simple spatial detection and discrimination task arise from

  8. Right-hemispheric processing of non-linguistic word features

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baumgaertner, Annette; Hartwigsen, Gesa; Roman Siebner, Hartwig

    2013-01-01

    -hemispheric homologues of classic left-hemispheric language areas may partly be due to processing nonlinguistic perceptual features of verbal stimuli. We used functional MRI (fMRI) to clarify the role of the right hemisphere in the perception of nonlinguistic word features in healthy individuals. Participants made...... perceptual, semantic, or phonological decisions on the same set of auditorily and visually presented word stimuli. Perceptual decisions required judgements about stimulus-inherent changes in font size (visual modality) or fundamental frequency contour (auditory modality). The semantic judgement required......, the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), an area previously suggested to support language recovery after left-hemispheric stroke, displayed modality-independent activation during perceptual processing of word stimuli. Our findings indicate that activation of the right hemisphere during language tasks may...

  9. Dual-Task Crosstalk between Saccades and Manual Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huestegge, Lynn; Koch, Iring

    2009-01-01

    Between-task crosstalk has been discussed as an important source for dual-task costs. In this study, the authors examine concurrently performed saccades and manual responses as a means of studying the role of response-code conflict between 2 tasks. In Experiment 1, participants responded to an imperative auditory stimulus with a left or a right…

  10. Between-task competition for intentions and actions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Millington, R.S.; Poljac, E.; Yeung, N.

    2013-01-01

    People can switch quickly and flexibly from one task to another, but suffer the effects of between-task competition when they do so: After switching, they tend to be distracted by irrelevant stimulus information and hampered by incorrect actions associated with recently performed tasks. This

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Discrimination learning with variable stimulus 'salience'

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  15. Task choice and semantic interference in picture naming

    OpenAIRE

    Piai, V.; Roelofs, A.P.A.; Schriefers, H.J.

    2015-01-01

    Evidence from dual-task performance indicates that speakers prefer not to select simultaneous responses in picture naming and another unrelated task, suggesting a response selection bottleneck in naming. In particular, when participants respond to tones with a manual response and name pictures with superimposed semantically related or unrelated distractor words, semantic interference in naming tends to be constant across stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) between the tone stimulus and the pic...

  16. How attention can create synaptic tags for the learning of working memories in sequential tasks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaldert O Rombouts

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Intelligence is our ability to learn appropriate responses to new stimuli and situations. Neurons in association cortex are thought to be essential for this ability. During learning these neurons become tuned to relevant features and start to represent them with persistent activity during memory delays. This learning process is not well understood. Here we develop a biologically plausible learning scheme that explains how trial-and-error learning induces neuronal selectivity and working memory representations for task-relevant information. We propose that the response selection stage sends attentional feedback signals to earlier processing levels, forming synaptic tags at those connections responsible for the stimulus-response mapping. Globally released neuromodulators then interact with tagged synapses to determine their plasticity. The resulting learning rule endows neural networks with the capacity to create new working memory representations of task relevant information as persistent activity. It is remarkably generic: it explains how association neurons learn to store task-relevant information for linear as well as non-linear stimulus-response mappings, how they become tuned to category boundaries or analog variables, depending on the task demands, and how they learn to integrate probabilistic evidence for perceptual decisions.

  17. Microprocessor multi-task monitor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ludemann, C.A.

    1983-01-01

    This paper describes a multi-task monitor program for microprocessors. Although written for the Intel 8085, it incorporates features that would be beneficial for implementation in other microprocessors used in controlling and monitoring experiments and accelerators. The monitor places permanent programs (tasks) arbitrarily located throughout ROM in a priority ordered queue. The programmer is provided with the flexibility to add new tasks or modified versions of existing tasks, without having to comply with previously defined task boundaries or having to reprogram all of ROM. Scheduling of tasks is triggered by timers, outside stimuli (interrupts), or inter-task communications. Context switching time is of the order of tenths of a milllisecond

  18. Neural Correlates of Visual Aesthetics – Beauty as the Coalescence of Stimulus and Internal State

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Richard H. A. H.; Renken, Remco; Cornelissen, Frans W.

    2012-01-01

    How do external stimuli and our internal state coalesce to create the distinctive aesthetic pleasures that give vibrance to human experience? Neuroaesthetics has so far focused on the neural correlates of observing beautiful stimuli compared to neutral or ugly stimuli, or on neural correlates of judging for beauty as opposed to other judgments. Our group questioned whether this approach is sufficient. In our view, a brain region that assesses beauty should show beauty-level-dependent activation during the beauty judgment task, but not during other, unrelated tasks. We therefore performed an fMRI experiment in which subjects judged visual textures for beauty, naturalness and roughness. Our focus was on finding brain activation related to the rated beauty level of the stimuli, which would take place exclusively during the beauty judgment. An initial whole-brain analysis did not reveal such interactions, yet a number of the regions showing main effects of the judgment task or the beauty level of stimuli were selectively sensitive to beauty level during the beauty task. Of the regions that were more active during beauty judgments than roughness judgments, the frontomedian cortex and the amygdala demonstrated the hypothesized interaction effect, while the posterior cingulate cortex did not. The latter region, which only showed a task effect, may play a supporting role in beauty assessments, such as attending to one's internal state rather than the external world. Most of the regions showing interaction effects of judgment and beauty level correspond to regions that have previously been implicated in aesthetics using different stimulus classes, but based on either task or beauty effects alone. The fact that we have now shown that task-stimulus interactions are also present during the aesthetic judgment of visual textures implies that these areas form a network that is specifically devoted to aesthetic assessment, irrespective of the stimulus type. PMID:22384006

  19. Neural correlates of visual aesthetics--beauty as the coalescence of stimulus and internal state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Richard H A H; Renken, Remco; Cornelissen, Frans W

    2012-01-01

    How do external stimuli and our internal state coalesce to create the distinctive aesthetic pleasures that give vibrance to human experience? Neuroaesthetics has so far focused on the neural correlates of observing beautiful stimuli compared to neutral or ugly stimuli, or on neural correlates of judging for beauty as opposed to other judgments. Our group questioned whether this approach is sufficient. In our view, a brain region that assesses beauty should show beauty-level-dependent activation during the beauty judgment task, but not during other, unrelated tasks. We therefore performed an fMRI experiment in which subjects judged visual textures for beauty, naturalness and roughness. Our focus was on finding brain activation related to the rated beauty level of the stimuli, which would take place exclusively during the beauty judgment. An initial whole-brain analysis did not reveal such interactions, yet a number of the regions showing main effects of the judgment task or the beauty level of stimuli were selectively sensitive to beauty level during the beauty task. Of the regions that were more active during beauty judgments than roughness judgments, the frontomedian cortex and the amygdala demonstrated the hypothesized interaction effect, while the posterior cingulate cortex did not. The latter region, which only showed a task effect, may play a supporting role in beauty assessments, such as attending to one's internal state rather than the external world. Most of the regions showing interaction effects of judgment and beauty level correspond to regions that have previously been implicated in aesthetics using different stimulus classes, but based on either task or beauty effects alone. The fact that we have now shown that task-stimulus interactions are also present during the aesthetic judgment of visual textures implies that these areas form a network that is specifically devoted to aesthetic assessment, irrespective of the stimulus type.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Performance effects of nicotine during selective attention, divided attention, and simple stimulus detection: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hahn, Britta; Ross, Thomas J; Wolkenberg, Frank A; Shakleya, Diaa M; Huestis, Marilyn A; Stein, Elliot A

    2009-09-01

    Attention-enhancing effects of nicotine appear to depend on the nature of the attentional function. Underlying neuroanatomical mechanisms, too, may vary depending on the function modulated. This functional magnetic resonance imaging study recorded blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) activity in minimally deprived smokers during tasks of simple stimulus detection, selective attention, or divided attention after single-blind application of a transdermal nicotine (21 mg) or placebo patch. Smokers' performance in the placebo condition was unimpaired as compared with matched nonsmokers. Nicotine reduced reaction time (RT) in the stimulus detection and selective attention but not divided attention condition. Across all task conditions, nicotine reduced activation in frontal, temporal, thalamic, and visual regions and enhanced deactivation in so-called "default" regions. Thalamic effects correlated with RT reduction selectively during stimulus detection. An interaction with task condition was observed in middle and superior frontal gyri, where nicotine reduced activation only during stimulus detection. A visuomotor control experiment provided evidence against nonspecific effects of nicotine. In conclusion, although prefrontal activity partly displayed differential modulation by nicotine, most BOLD effects were identical across tasks, despite differential performance effects, suggesting that common neuronal mechanisms can selectively benefit different attentional functions. Overall, the effects of nicotine may be explained by increased functional efficiency and downregulated task-independent "default" functions.

  3. How does reward compete with goal-directed and stimulus-driven shifts of attention?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeois, Alexia; Neveu, Rémi; Bayle, Dimitri J; Vuilleumier, Patrik

    2017-01-01

    In order to behave adaptively, attention can be directed in space either voluntarily (i.e. endogenously) according to strategic goals, or involuntarily (i.e. exogenously) through reflexive capture by salient or novel events. The emotional or motivational values of stimuli can also influence attentional orienting. However, little is known about how reward-related effects compete or interact with endogenous and exogenous attention mechanisms. Here we designed a visual search paradigm in which goal-driven and stimulus-driven shifts of attention were manipulated by classic spatial cueing procedures, while an irrelevant, but previously rewarded stimulus also appeared as a distractor and hence competed with both types of spatial attention during search. Our results demonstrated that stimuli previously associated with a high monetary reward received higher attentional priority in the subsequent visual search task, even though these stimuli and reward were no longer task-relevant, mitigating the attentional orienting induced by both endogenous and exogenous cues.

  4. Task choice and semantic interference in picture naming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piai, Vitória; Roelofs, Ardi; Schriefers, Herbert

    2015-05-01

    Evidence from dual-task performance indicates that speakers prefer not to select simultaneous responses in picture naming and another unrelated task, suggesting a response selection bottleneck in naming. In particular, when participants respond to tones with a manual response and name pictures with superimposed semantically related or unrelated distractor words, semantic interference in naming tends to be constant across stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) between the tone stimulus and the picture-word stimulus. In the present study, we examine whether semantic interference in picture naming depends on SOA in case of a task choice (naming the picture vs reading the word of a picture-word stimulus) based on tones. This situation requires concurrent processing of the tone stimulus and the picture-word stimulus, but not a manual response to the tones. On each trial, participants either named a picture or read aloud a word depending on the pitch of a tone, which was presented simultaneously with picture-word onset or 350 ms or 1000 ms before picture-word onset. Semantic interference was present with tone pre-exposure, but absent when tone and picture-word stimulus were presented simultaneously. Against the background of the available studies, these results support an account according to which speakers tend to avoid concurrent response selection, but can engage in other types of concurrent processing, such as task choices. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Feature-Based Visual Short-Term Memory Is Widely Distributed and Hierarchically Organized.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Nicholas M; Hoffman, Steven J; Goodell, Baldwin; Gray, Charles M

    2018-06-15

    Feature-based visual short-term memory is known to engage both sensory and association cortices. However, the extent of the participating circuit and the neural mechanisms underlying memory maintenance is still a matter of vigorous debate. To address these questions, we recorded neuronal activity from 42 cortical areas in monkeys performing a feature-based visual short-term memory task and an interleaved fixation task. We find that task-dependent differences in firing rates are widely distributed throughout the cortex, while stimulus-specific changes in firing rates are more restricted and hierarchically organized. We also show that microsaccades during the memory delay encode the stimuli held in memory and that units modulated by microsaccades are more likely to exhibit stimulus specificity, suggesting that eye movements contribute to visual short-term memory processes. These results support a framework in which most cortical areas, within a modality, contribute to mnemonic representations at timescales that increase along the cortical hierarchy. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Stimulus-driven attention, threat bias, and sad bias in youth with a history of an anxiety disorder or depression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sylvester, Chad M.; Hudziak, James J.; Gaffrey, Michael S.; Barch, Deanna M.; Luby, Joan L.

    2015-01-01

    Attention biases towards threatening and sad stimuli are associated with pediatric anxiety and depression, respectively. The basic cognitive mechanisms associated with attention biases in youth, however, remain unclear. Here, we tested the hypothesis that threat bias (selective attention for threatening versus neutral stimuli) but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. We collected measures of stimulus-driven attention, threat bias, sad bias, and current clinical symptoms in youth with a history of an anxiety disorder and/or depression (ANX/DEP; n=40) as well as healthy controls (HC; n=33). Stimulus-driven attention was measured with a non-emotional spatial orienting task, while threat bias and sad bias were measured at a short time interval (150 ms) with a spatial orienting task using emotional faces and at a longer time interval (500 ms) using a dot-probe task. In ANX/DEP but not HC, early attention bias towards threat was negatively correlated with later attention bias to threat, suggesting that early threat vigilance was associated with later threat avoidance. Across all subjects, stimulus-driven orienting was not correlated with early threat bias but was negatively correlated with later threat bias, indicating that rapid stimulus-driven orienting is linked to later threat avoidance. No parallel relationships were detected for sad bias. Current symptoms of depression but not anxiety were related to decreased stimulus-driven attention. Together, these results are consistent with the hypothesis that threat bias but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. These results inform the design of attention bias modification programs that aim to reverse threat biases and reduce symptoms associated with pediatric anxiety and depression. PMID:25702927

  7. Stimulus-Driven Attention, Threat Bias, and Sad Bias in Youth with a History of an Anxiety Disorder or Depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sylvester, Chad M; Hudziak, James J; Gaffrey, Michael S; Barch, Deanna M; Luby, Joan L

    2016-02-01

    Attention biases towards threatening and sad stimuli are associated with pediatric anxiety and depression, respectively. The basic cognitive mechanisms associated with attention biases in youth, however, remain unclear. Here, we tested the hypothesis that threat bias (selective attention for threatening versus neutral stimuli) but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. We collected measures of stimulus-driven attention, threat bias, sad bias, and current clinical symptoms in youth with a history of an anxiety disorder and/or depression (ANX/DEP; n = 40) as well as healthy controls (HC; n = 33). Stimulus-driven attention was measured with a non-emotional spatial orienting task, while threat bias and sad bias were measured at a short time interval (150 ms) with a spatial orienting task using emotional faces and at a longer time interval (500 ms) using a dot-probe task. In ANX/DEP but not HC, early attention bias towards threat was negatively correlated with later attention bias to threat, suggesting that early threat vigilance was associated with later threat avoidance. Across all subjects, stimulus-driven orienting was not correlated with early threat bias but was negatively correlated with later threat bias, indicating that rapid stimulus-driven orienting is linked to later threat avoidance. No parallel relationships were detected for sad bias. Current symptoms of depression but not anxiety were related to decreased stimulus-driven attention. Together, these results are consistent with the hypothesis that threat bias but not sad bias relies on stimulus-driven attention. These results inform the design of attention bias modification programs that aim to reverse threat biases and reduce symptoms associated with pediatric anxiety and depression.

  8. Coding space-time stimulus dynamics in auditory brain maps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunyan eWang

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Sensory maps are often distorted representations of the environment, where ethologically-important ranges are magnified. The implication of a biased representation extends beyond increased acuity for having more neurons dedicated to a certain range. Because neurons are functionally interconnected, non-uniform representations influence the processing of high-order features that rely on comparison across areas of the map. Among these features are time-dependent changes of the auditory scene generated by moving objects. How sensory representation affects high order processing can be approached in the map of auditory space of the owl’s midbrain, where locations in the front are over-represented. In this map, neurons are selective not only to location but also to location over time. The tuning to space over time leads to direction selectivity, which is also topographically organized. Across the population, neurons tuned to peripheral space are more selective to sounds moving into the front. The distribution of direction selectivity can be explained by spatial and temporal integration on the non-uniform map of space. Thus, the representation of space can induce biased computation of a second-order stimulus feature. This phenomenon is likely observed in other sensory maps and may be relevant for behavior.

  9. No psychological effect of color context in a low level vision task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedley, Adam; Wade, Alex R

    2013-01-01

    A remarkable series of recent papers have shown that colour can influence performance in cognitive tasks. In particular, they suggest that viewing a participant number printed in red ink or other red ancillary stimulus elements improves performance in tasks requiring local processing and impedes performance in tasks requiring global processing whilst the reverse is true for the colour blue. The tasks in these experiments require high level cognitive processing such as analogy solving or remote association tests and the chromatic effect on local vs. global processing is presumed to involve widespread activation of the autonomic nervous system. If this is the case, we might expect to see similar effects on all local vs. global task comparisons. To test this hypothesis, we asked whether chromatic cues also influence performance in tasks involving low level visual feature integration. Subjects performed either local (contrast detection) or global (form detection) tasks on achromatic dynamic Glass pattern stimuli. Coloured instructions, target frames and fixation points were used to attempt to bias performance to different task types. Based on previous literature, we hypothesised that red cues would improve performance in the (local) contrast detection task but would impede performance in the (global) form detection task.  A two-way, repeated measures, analysis of covariance (2×2 ANCOVA) with gender as a covariate, revealed no influence of colour on either task, F(1,29) = 0.289, p = 0.595, partial η (2) = 0.002. Additional analysis revealed no significant differences in only the first attempts of the tasks or in the improvement in performance between trials. We conclude that motivational processes elicited by colour perception do not influence neuronal signal processing in the early visual system, in stark contrast to their putative effects on processing in higher areas.

  10. Emotionally negative pictures increase attention to a subsequent auditory stimulus.

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    Tartar, Jaime L; de Almeida, Kristen; McIntosh, Roger C; Rosselli, Monica; Nash, Allan J

    2012-01-01

    Emotionally negative stimuli serve as a mechanism of biological preparedness to enhance attention. We hypothesized that emotionally negative stimuli would also serve as motivational priming to increase attention resources for subsequent stimuli. To that end, we tested 11 participants in a dual sensory modality task, wherein emotionally negative pictures were contrasted with emotionally neutral pictures and each picture was followed 600 ms later by a tone in an auditory oddball paradigm. Each trial began with a picture displayed for 200 ms; half of the trials began with an emotionally negative picture and half of the trials began with an emotionally neutral picture; 600 ms following picture presentation, the participants heard either an oddball tone or a standard tone. At the end of each trial (picture followed by tone), the participants categorized, with a button press, the picture and tone combination. As expected, and consistent with previous studies, we found an enhanced visual late positive potential (latency range=300-700 ms) to the negative picture stimuli. We further found that compared to neutral pictures, negative pictures resulted in early attention and orienting effects to subsequent tones (measured through an enhanced N1 and N2) and sustained attention effects only to the subsequent oddball tones (measured through late processing negativity, latency range=400-700 ms). Number pad responses to both the picture and tone category showed the shortest response latencies and greatest percentage of correct picture-tone categorization on the negative picture followed by oddball tone trials. Consistent with previous work on natural selective attention, our results support the idea that emotional stimuli can alter attention resource allocation. This finding has broad implications for human attention and performance as it specifically shows the conditions in which an emotionally negative stimulus can result in extended stimulus evaluation. Copyright © 2011

  11. Word position affects stimulus recognition: evidence for early ERP short-term plastic modulation.

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    Spironelli, Chiara; Galfano, Giovanni; Umiltà, Carlo; Angrilli, Alessandro

    2011-12-01

    The present study was aimed at investigating the short-term plastic changes that follow word learning at a neurophysiological level. The main hypothesis was that word position (left or right visual field, LVF/RH or RVF/LH) in the initial learning phase would leave a trace that affected, in the subsequent recognition phase, the Recognition Potential (i.e., the first negative component distinguishing words from other stimuli) elicited 220-240 ms after centrally presented stimuli. Forty-eight students were administered, in the learning phase, 125 words for 4s, randomly presented half in the left and half in the right visual field. In the recognition phase, participants were split into two equal groups, one was assigned to the Word task, the other to the Picture task (in which half of the 125 pictures were new, and half matched prior studied words). During the Word task, old RVF/LH words elicited significantly greater negativity in left posterior sites with respect to old LVF/RH words, which in turn showed the same pattern of activation evoked by new words. Therefore, correspondence between stimulus spatial position and hemisphere specialized in automatic word recognition created a robust prime for subsequent recognition. During the Picture task, pictures matching old RVF/LH words showed no differences compared with new pictures, but evoked significantly greater negativity than pictures matching old LVF/RH words. Thus, the priming effect vanished when the task required a switch from visual analysis to stored linguistic information, whereas the lack of correspondence between stimulus position and network specialized in automatic word recognition (i.e., when words were presented to the LVF/RH) revealed the implicit costs for recognition. Results support the view that short-term plastic changes occurring in a linguistic learning task interact with both stimulus position and modality (written word vs. picture representation). Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights

  12. Modulation of EMG-EMG Coherence in a Choice Stepping Task

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    Ippei Nojima

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The voluntary step execution task is a popular measure for identifying fall risks among elderly individuals in the community setting because most falls have been reported to occur during movement. However, the neurophysiological functions during this movement are not entirely understood. Here, we used electromyography (EMG to explore the relationship between EMG-EMG coherence, which reflects common oscillatory drive to motoneurons, and motor performance associated with stepping tasks: simple reaction time (SRT and choice reaction time (CRT tasks. Ten healthy elderly adults participated in the study. Participants took a single step forward in response to a visual imperative stimulus. EMG-EMG coherence was analyzed for 1000 ms before the presentation of the stimulus (stationary standing position from proximal and distal tibialis anterior (TA and soleus (SOL muscles. The main result showed that all paired EMG-EMG coherences in the alpha and beta frequency bands were greater in the SRT than the CRT task. This finding suggests that the common oscillatory drive to the motoneurons during the SRT task occurred prior to taking a step, whereas the lower value of corticospinal activity during the CRT task prior to taking a step may indicate an involvement of inhibitory activity, which is consistent with observations from our previous study (Watanabe et al., 2016. Furthermore, the beta band coherence in intramuscular TA tended to positively correlate with the number of performance errors that are associated with fall risks in the CRT task, suggesting that a reduction in the inhibitory activity may result in a decrease of stepping performance. These findings could advance the understanding of the neurophysiological features of postural adjustments in elderly individuals.

  13. Examining a supramodal network for conflict processing: a systematic review and novel functional magnetic resonance imaging data for related visual and auditory stroop tasks.

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    Roberts, Katherine L; Hall, Deborah A

    2008-06-01

    Cognitive control over conflicting information has been studied extensively using tasks such as the color-word Stroop, flanker, and spatial conflict task. Neuroimaging studies typically identify a fronto-parietal network engaged in conflict processing, but numerous additional regions are also reported. Ascribing putative functional roles to these regions is problematic because some may have less to do with conflict processing per se, but could be engaged in specific processes related to the chosen stimulus modality, stimulus feature, or type of conflict task. In addition, some studies contrast activation on incongruent and congruent trials, even though a neutral baseline is needed to separate the effect of inhibition from that of facilitation. In the first part of this article, we report a systematic review of 34 neuroimaging publications, which reveals that conflict-related activity is reliably reported in the anterior cingulate cortex and bilaterally in the lateral prefrontal cortex, the anterior insula, and the parietal lobe. In the second part, we further explore these candidate "conflict" regions through a novel functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment, in which the same group of subjects perform related visual and auditory Stroop tasks. By carefully controlling for the same task (Stroop), the same to-be-ignored stimulus dimension (word meaning), and by separating out inhibitory processes from those of facilitation, we attempt to minimize the potential differences between the two tasks. The results provide converging evidence that the regions identified by the systematic review are reliably engaged in conflict processing. Despite carefully matching the Stroop tasks, some regions of differential activity remained, particularly in the parietal cortex. We discuss some of the task-specific processes which might account for this finding.

  14. Spatiotemporal Features for Asynchronous Event-based Data

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    Xavier eLagorce

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Bio-inspired asynchronous event-based vision sensors are currently introducing a paradigm shift in visual information processing. These new sensors rely on a stimulus-driven principle of light acquisition similar to biological retinas. They are event-driven and fully asynchronous, thereby reducing redundancy and encoding exact times of input signal changes, leading to a very precise temporal resolution. Approaches for higher-level computer vision often rely on the realiable detection of features in visual frames, but similar definitions of features for the novel dynamic and event-based visual input representation of silicon retinas have so far been lacking. This article addresses the problem of learning and recognizing features for event-based vision sensors, which capture properties of truly spatiotemporal volumes of sparse visual event information. A novel computational architecture for learning and encoding spatiotemporal features is introduced based on a set of predictive recurrent reservoir networks, competing via winner-take-all selection. Features are learned in an unsupervised manner from real-world input recorded with event-based vision sensors. It is shown that the networks in the architecture learn distinct and task-specific dynamic visual features, and can predict their trajectories over time.

  15. The Honolulu posttraumatic stress disorder stimulus set.

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    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.

  16. Sleep deprivation and time-on-task performance decrement in the rat psychomotor vigilance task.

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    Oonk, Marcella; Davis, Christopher J; Krueger, James M; Wisor, Jonathan P; Van Dongen, Hans P A

    2015-03-01

    The rat psychomotor vigilance task (rPVT) was developed as a rodent analog of the human psychomotor vigilance task (hPVT). We examined whether rPVT performance displays time-on-task effects similar to those observed on the hPVT. The rPVT requires rats to respond to a randomly presented light stimulus to obtain a water reward. Rats were water deprived for 22 h prior to each 30-min rPVT session to motivate performance. We analyzed rPVT performance over time on task and as a function of the response-stimulus interval, at baseline and after sleep deprivation. The study was conducted in an academic research vivarium. Male Long-Evans rats were trained to respond to a 0.5 sec stimulus light within 3 sec of stimulus onset. Complete data were available for n = 20 rats. Rats performed the rPVT for 30 min at baseline and after 24 h total sleep deprivation by gentle handling. Compared to baseline, sleep deprived rats displayed increased performance lapses and premature responses, similar to hPVT lapses of attention and false starts. However, in contrast to hPVT performance, the time-on-task performance decrement was not significantly enhanced by sleep deprivation. Moreover, following sleep deprivation, rPVT response times were not consistently increased after short response-stimulus intervals. The rPVT manifests similarities to the hPVT in global performance outcomes, but not in post-sleep deprivation effects of time on task and response-stimulus interval. © 2015 Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC.

  17. Impact of load-related neural processes on feature binding in visuospatial working memory.

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    Nicole A Kochan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The capacity of visual working memory (WM is substantially limited and only a fraction of what we see is maintained as a temporary trace. The process of binding visual features has been proposed as an adaptive means of minimising information demands on WM. However the neural mechanisms underlying this process, and its modulation by task and load effects, are not well understood. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the neural correlates of feature binding and its modulation by WM load during the sequential phases of encoding, maintenance and retrieval. METHODS AND FINDINGS: 18 young healthy participants performed a visuospatial WM task with independent factors of load and feature conjunction (object identity and position in an event-related functional MRI study. During stimulus encoding, load-invariant conjunction-related activity was observed in left prefrontal cortex and left hippocampus. During maintenance, greater activity for task demands of feature conjunction versus single features, and for increased load was observed in left-sided regions of the superior occipital cortex, precuneus and superior frontal cortex. Where these effects were expressed in overlapping cortical regions, their combined effect was additive. During retrieval, however, an interaction of load and feature conjunction was observed. This modulation of feature conjunction activity under increased load was expressed through greater deactivation in medial structures identified as part of the default mode network. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: The relationship between memory load and feature binding qualitatively differed through each phase of the WM task. Of particular interest was the interaction of these factors observed within regions of the default mode network during retrieval which we interpret as suggesting that at low loads, binding processes may be 'automatic' but at higher loads it becomes a resource-intensive process leading to disengagement of activity in this

  18. Evidence for unlimited capacity processing of simple features in visual cortex.

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    White, Alex L; Runeson, Erik; Palmer, John; Ernst, Zachary R; Boynton, Geoffrey M

    2017-06-01

    Performance in many visual tasks is impaired when observers attempt to divide spatial attention across multiple visual field locations. Correspondingly, neuronal response magnitudes in visual cortex are often reduced during divided compared with focused spatial attention. This suggests that early visual cortex is the site of capacity limits, where finite processing resources must be divided among attended stimuli. However, behavioral research demonstrates that not all visual tasks suffer such capacity limits: The costs of divided attention are minimal when the task and stimulus are simple, such as when searching for a target defined by orientation or contrast. To date, however, every neuroimaging study of divided attention has used more complex tasks and found large reductions in response magnitude. We bridged that gap by using functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure responses in the human visual cortex during simple feature detection. The first experiment used a visual search task: Observers detected a low-contrast Gabor patch within one or four potentially relevant locations. The second experiment used a dual-task design, in which observers made independent judgments of Gabor presence in patches of dynamic noise at two locations. In both experiments, blood-oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signals in the retinotopic cortex were significantly lower for ignored than attended stimuli. However, when observers divided attention between multiple stimuli, BOLD signals were not reliably reduced and behavioral performance was unimpaired. These results suggest that processing of simple features in early visual cortex has unlimited capacity.

  19. Age-related slowing of response selection and production in a visual choice reaction time task

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    David L Woods

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Aging is associated with delayed processing in choice reaction time (CRT tasks, but the processing stages most impacted by aging have not been clearly identified. Here, we analyzed CRT latencies in a computerized serial visual feature-conjunction task. Participants responded to a target letter (probability 40% by pressing one mouse button, and responded to distractor letters differing either in color, shape, or both features from the target (probabilities 20% each, by pressing the other mouse button. Stimuli were presented randomly to the left and right visual fields and stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs were adaptively reduced following correct responses using a staircase procedure. In Experiment 1, we tested 1466 participants who ranged in age from 18 to 65 years. CRT latencies increased significantly with age (r = 0.47, 2.80 ms/year. Central processing time (CPT, isolated by subtracting simple reaction times (obtained in a companion experiment performed on the same day from CRT latencies, accounted for more than 80% of age-related CRT slowing, with most of the remaining increase in latency due to slowed motor responses. Participants were faster and more accurate when the stimulus location was spatially compatible with the mouse button used for responding, and this effect increased slightly with age. Participants took longer to respond to distractors with target color or shape than to distractors with no target features. However, the additional time needed to discriminate the more target-like distractors did not increase with age. In Experiment 2, we replicated the findings of Experiment 1 in a second population of 178 participants (ages 18-82 years. CRT latencies did not differ significantly in the two experiments, and similar effects of age, distractor similarity, and stimulus-response spatial compatibility were found. The results suggest that the age-related slowing in visual CRT latencies is largely due to delays in response selection and

  20. Contrasting effects of feature-based statistics on the categorisation and basic-level identification of visual objects.

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    Taylor, Kirsten I; Devereux, Barry J; Acres, Kadia; Randall, Billi; Tyler, Lorraine K

    2012-03-01

    Conceptual representations are at the heart of our mental lives, involved in every aspect of cognitive functioning. Despite their centrality, a long-standing debate persists as to how the meanings of concepts are represented and processed. Many accounts agree that the meanings of concrete concepts are represented by their individual features, but disagree about the importance of different feature-based variables: some views stress the importance of the information carried by distinctive features in conceptual processing, others the features which are shared over many concepts, and still others the extent to which features co-occur. We suggest that previously disparate theoretical positions and experimental findings can be unified by an account which claims that task demands determine how concepts are processed in addition to the effects of feature distinctiveness and co-occurrence. We tested these predictions in a basic-level naming task which relies on distinctive feature information (Experiment 1) and a domain decision task which relies on shared feature information (Experiment 2). Both used large-scale regression designs with the same visual objects, and mixed-effects models incorporating participant, session, stimulus-related and feature statistic variables to model the performance. We found that concepts with relatively more distinctive and more highly correlated distinctive relative to shared features facilitated basic-level naming latencies, while concepts with relatively more shared and more highly correlated shared relative to distinctive features speeded domain decisions. These findings demonstrate that the feature statistics of distinctiveness (shared vs. distinctive) and correlational strength, as well as the task demands, determine how concept meaning is processed in the conceptual system. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Psychological restoration can depend on stimulus-source attribution: A challenge for the evolutionary account?

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    Andreas Haga

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Visiting or viewing nature environments can have restorative psychological effects, while exposure to the built environment typically has less positive effects. A classic view is that this difference in restorative potential of nature and built environments depends on differences in the intrinsic characteristics of the stimuli. In addition, an evolutionary account is often assumed whereby restoration is believed to be a hardwired response to nature’s stimulus-features. Here, we propose the novel hypothesis that the restorative effects of a stimulus do not entirely depend on the stimulus-features per se, but also on the meaning that people assign to the stimulus. Participants conducted cognitively demanding tests prior to and after a brief pause. During the pause, the participants were exposed to an ambiguous sound consisting of pink noise with white noise interspersed. Participants in the nature sound-source condition were told that the sound originated from a nature scene with a waterfall; participants in the industrial sound-source condition were told that the sound originated from an industrial environment with machinery; and participants in the control condition were told nothing about the sound origin. Self-reported mental exhaustion showed that participants in the nature sound-source condition were more psychologically restored after the pause than participants in the industrial sound-source condition. One potential interpretation of the results is that restoration from nature experiences depends on learned, positive associations with nature; not only on hardwired responses shaped by evolution.

  2. Waiting is the hardest part: comparison of two computational strategies for performing a compelled-response task

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    Emilio Salinas

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The neural basis of choice behavior is commonly investigated with tasks in which a subject analyzes a stimulus and reports his or her perceptual experience with an appropriate motor action. We recently developed a novel task, the compelled-saccade task, with which the influence of the sensory information on the subject's choice can be tracked through time with millisecond resolution, thus providing a new tool for correlating neuronal activity and behavior. This paradigm has a crucial feature: the signal that instructs the subject to make an eye movement is given before the cue that indicates which of two possible choices is the correct one. Previously, we found that psychophysical performance in this task could be accurately replicated by a model in which two developing oculomotor plans race to a threshold and the incoming perceptual information differentially accelerates their trajectories toward it. However, the task design suggests an alternative mechanism: instead of modifying an ongoing oculomotor plan on the fly as the sensory information becomes available, the subject could try to wait, withholding the oculomotor response until the sensory cue is revealed. Here, we use computer simulations to explore and compare the performance of these two types of models. We find that both reproduce the main features of the psychophysical data in the compelled-saccade task, but they give rise to distinct behavioral and neurophysiological predictions. Although, superficially, the waiting model is intuitively appealing, it is ultimately inconsistent with experimental results from this and other tasks.

  3. Feature-selective attention in healthy old age: a selective decline in selective attention?

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    Quigley, Cliodhna; Müller, Matthias M

    2014-02-12

    Deficient selection against irrelevant information has been proposed to underlie age-related cognitive decline. We recently reported evidence for maintained early sensory selection when older and younger adults used spatial selective attention to perform a challenging task. Here we explored age-related differences when spatial selection is not possible and feature-selective attention must be deployed. We additionally compared the integrity of feedforward processing by exploiting the well established phenomenon of suppression of visual cortical responses attributable to interstimulus competition. Electroencephalogram was measured while older and younger human adults responded to brief occurrences of coherent motion in an attended stimulus composed of randomly moving, orientation-defined, flickering bars. Attention was directed to horizontal or vertical bars by a pretrial cue, after which two orthogonally oriented, overlapping stimuli or a single stimulus were presented. Horizontal and vertical bars flickered at different frequencies and thereby elicited separable steady-state visual-evoked potentials, which were used to examine the effect of feature-based selection and the competitive influence of a second stimulus on ongoing visual processing. Age differences were found in feature-selective attentional modulation of visual responses: older adults did not show consistent modulation of magnitude or phase. In contrast, the suppressive effect of a second stimulus was robust and comparable in magnitude across age groups, suggesting that bottom-up processing of the current stimuli is essentially unchanged in healthy old age. Thus, it seems that visual processing per se is unchanged, but top-down attentional control is compromised in older adults when space cannot be used to guide selection.

  4. Can two dots form a Gestalt? Measuring emergent features with the capacity coefficient.

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    Hawkins, Robert X D; Houpt, Joseph W; Eidels, Ami; Townsend, James T

    2016-09-01

    While there is widespread agreement among vision researchers on the importance of some local aspects of visual stimuli, such as hue and intensity, there is no general consensus on a full set of basic sources of information used in perceptual tasks or how they are processed. Gestalt theories place particular value on emergent features, which are based on the higher-order relationships among elements of a stimulus rather than local properties. Thus, arbitrating between different accounts of features is an important step in arbitrating between local and Gestalt theories of perception in general. In this paper, we present the capacity coefficient from Systems Factorial Technology (SFT) as a quantitative approach for formalizing and rigorously testing predictions made by local and Gestalt theories of features. As a simple, easily controlled domain for testing this approach, we focus on the local feature of location and the emergent features of Orientation and Proximity in a pair of dots. We introduce a redundant-target change detection task to compare our capacity measure on (1) trials where the configuration of the dots changed along with their location against (2) trials where the amount of local location change was exactly the same, but there was no change in the configuration. Our results, in conjunction with our modeling tools, favor the Gestalt account of emergent features. We conclude by suggesting several candidate information-processing models that incorporate emergent features, which follow from our approach. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Rules and more rules: the effects of multiple tasks, extensive training, and aging on task-switching performance.

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    Buchler, Norbou G; Hoyer, William J; Cerella, John

    2008-06-01

    Task-switching performance was assessed in young and older adults as a function of the number of task sets to be actively maintained in memory (varied from 1 to 4) over the course of extended training (5 days). Each of the four tasks required the execution of a simple computational algorithm, which was instantaneously cued by the color of the two-digit stimulus. Tasks were presented in pure (task set size 1) and mixed blocks (task set sizes 2, 3, 4), and the task sequence was unpredictable. By considering task switching beyond two tasks, we found evidence for a cognitive control system that is not overwhelmed by task set size load manipulations. Extended training eliminated age effects in task-switching performance, even when the participants had to manage the execution of up to four tasks. The results are discussed in terms of current theories of cognitive control, including task set inertia and production system postulates.

  6. Pyff---A Pythonic Framework for Feedback Applications and Stimulus Presentation in Neuroscience

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    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.

  7. Brain bases for auditory stimulus-driven figure-ground segregation.

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    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.

  8. Pyff - a pythonic framework for feedback applications and stimulus presentation in neuroscience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venthur, Bastian; Scholler, Simon; Williamson, John; Dähne, Sven; Treder, Matthias S; Kramarek, Maria T; Müller, Klaus-Robert; Blankertz, Benjamin

    2010-01-01

    This paper introduces Pyff, the Pythonic feedback framework for feedback applications and stimulus presentation. Pyff provides a platform-independent framework that allows users to develop and run neuroscientific experiments in the programming language Python. Existing solutions have mostly been implemented in C++, which makes for a rather tedious programming task for non-computer-scientists, or in Matlab, which is not well suited for more advanced visual or auditory applications. Pyff was designed to make experimental paradigms (i.e., feedback and stimulus applications) easily programmable. It includes base classes for various types of common feedbacks and stimuli as well as useful libraries for external hardware such as eyetrackers. Pyff is also equipped with a steadily growing set of ready-to-use feedbacks and stimuli. It can be used as a standalone application, for instance providing stimulus presentation in psychophysics experiments, or within a closed loop such as in biofeedback or brain-computer interfacing experiments. Pyff communicates with other systems via a standardized communication protocol and is therefore suitable to be used with any system that may be adapted to send its data in the specified format. Having such a general, open-source framework will help foster a fruitful exchange of experimental paradigms between research groups. In particular, it will decrease the need of reprogramming standard paradigms, ease the reproducibility of published results, and naturally entail some standardization of stimulus presentation.

  9. 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.

  10. The effect of stimulus intensity on response time and accuracy in dynamic, temporally constrained environments.

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    Causer, J; McRobert, A P; Williams, A M

    2013-10-01

    The ability to make accurate judgments and execute effective skilled movements under severe temporal constraints are fundamental to elite performance in a number of domains including sport, military combat, law enforcement, and medicine. In two experiments, we examine the effect of stimulus strength on response time and accuracy in a temporally constrained, real-world, decision-making task. Specifically, we examine the effect of low stimulus intensity (black) and high stimulus intensity (sequin) uniform designs, worn by teammates, to determine the effect of stimulus strength on the ability of soccer players to make rapid and accurate responses. In both field- and laboratory-based scenarios, professional soccer players viewed developing patterns of play and were required to make a penetrative pass to an attacking player. Significant differences in response accuracy between uniform designs were reported in laboratory- and field-based experiments. Response accuracy was significantly higher in the sequin compared with the black uniform condition. Response times only differed between uniform designs in the laboratory-based experiment. These findings extend the literature into a real-world environment and have significant implications for the design of clothing wear in a number of domains. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Fast and slow readers of the Hebrew language show divergence in brain response ∼200 ms post stimulus: an ERP study.

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    Sebastian Peter Korinth

    Full Text Available Higher N170 amplitudes to words and to faces were recently reported for faster readers of German. Since the shallow German orthography allows phonological recoding of single letters, the reported speed advantages might have their origin in especially well-developed visual processing skills of faster readers. In contrast to German, adult readers of Hebrew are forced to process letter chunks up to whole words. This dependence on more complex visual processing might have created ceiling effects for this skill. Therefore, the current study examined whether also in the deep Hebrew orthography visual processing skills as reflected by N170 amplitudes explain reading speed differences. Forty university students, native speakers of Hebrew without reading impairments, accomplished a lexical decision task (i.e., deciding whether a visually presented stimulus represents a real or a pseudo word and a face decision task (i.e., deciding whether a face was presented complete or with missing facial features while their electroencephalogram was recorded from 64 scalp positions. In both tasks stronger event related potentials (ERPs were observed for faster readers in time windows at about 200 ms. Unlike in previous studies, ERP waveforms in relevant time windows did not correspond to N170 scalp topographies. The results support the notion of visual processing ability as an orthography independent marker of reading proficiency, which advances our understanding about regular and impaired reading development.

  12. Modality and Task Switching Interactions using Bi-Modal and Bivalent Stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandhu, Rajwant; Dyson, Benjamin J.

    2013-01-01

    Investigations of concurrent task and modality switching effects have to date been studied under conditions of uni-modal stimulus presentation. As such, it is difficult to directly compare resultant task and modality switching effects, as the stimuli afford both tasks on each trial, but only one modality. The current study investigated task and…

  13. Transfers of stimulus function during roulette wagering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, Mark R; Enoch, Mary Rachel; Belisle, Jordan

    2017-10-01

    Twenty-five recreational gamblers were initially asked to place bets on either red or black positions on a roulette board in a simulated casino setting. Each participant was then exposed to a stimulus pairing observing procedure which attempted to develop equivalence classes between one color (black or red) and traditionally positive words (e.g., love, happy, sex) and another color (black or red) and traditionally negative words (e.g., death, cancer, taxes), in the absence of consequence manipulations. Twenty-one of the twenty-five participants demonstrated greater response allocation to the color position on the roulette board that participated in a relational network with the positive words. Variations in sequencing of experimental conditions had no impact on poststimulus-pairing wagers, but did impact tests for equivalence accuracy. © 2017 Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior.

  14. Noradrenergic modulation of neural erotic stimulus perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graf, Heiko; Wiegers, Maike; Metzger, Coraline Danielle; Walter, Martin; Grön, Georg; Abler, Birgit

    2017-09-01

    We recently investigated neuromodulatory effects of the noradrenergic agent reboxetine and the dopamine receptor affine amisulpride in healthy subjects on dynamic erotic stimulus processing. Whereas amisulpride left sexual functions and neural activations unimpaired, we observed detrimental activations under reboxetine within the caudate nucleus corresponding to motivational components of sexual behavior. However, broadly impaired subjective sexual functioning under reboxetine suggested effects on further neural components. We now investigated the same sample under these two agents with static erotic picture stimulation as alternative stimulus presentation mode to potentially observe further neural treatment effects of reboxetine. 19 healthy males were investigated under reboxetine, amisulpride and placebo for 7 days each within a double-blind cross-over design. During fMRI static erotic picture were presented with preceding anticipation periods. Subjective sexual functions were assessed by a self-reported questionnaire. Neural activations were attenuated within the caudate nucleus, putamen, ventral striatum, the pregenual and anterior midcingulate cortex and in the orbitofrontal cortex under reboxetine. Subjective diminished sexual arousal under reboxetine was correlated with attenuated neural reactivity within the posterior insula. Again, amisulpride left neural activations along with subjective sexual functioning unimpaired. Neither reboxetine nor amisulpride altered differential neural activations during anticipation of erotic stimuli. Our results verified detrimental effects of noradrenergic agents on neural motivational but also emotional and autonomic components of sexual behavior. Considering the overlap of neural network alterations with those evoked by serotonergic agents, our results suggest similar neuromodulatory effects of serotonergic and noradrenergic agents on common neural pathways relevant for sexual behavior. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. and

  15. Distinguishing bias from sensitivity effects in multialternative detection tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sridharan, Devarajan; Steinmetz, Nicholas A; Moore, Tirin; Knudsen, Eric I

    2014-08-21

    Studies investigating the neural bases of cognitive phenomena increasingly employ multialternative detection tasks that seek to measure the ability to detect a target stimulus or changes in some target feature (e.g., orientation or direction of motion) that could occur at one of many locations. In such tasks, it is essential to distinguish the behavioral and neural correlates of enhanced perceptual sensitivity from those of increased bias for a particular location or choice (choice bias). However, making such a distinction is not possible with established approaches. We present a new signal detection model that decouples the behavioral effects of choice bias from those of perceptual sensitivity in multialternative (change) detection tasks. By formulating the perceptual decision in a multidimensional decision space, our model quantifies the respective contributions of bias and sensitivity to multialternative behavioral choices. With a combination of analytical and numerical approaches, we demonstrate an optimal, one-to-one mapping between model parameters and choice probabilities even for tasks involving arbitrarily large numbers of alternatives. We validated the model with published data from two ternary choice experiments: a target-detection experiment and a length-discrimination experiment. The results of this validation provided novel insights into perceptual processes (sensory noise and competitive interactions) that can accurately and parsimoniously account for observers' behavior in each task. The model will find important application in identifying and interpreting the effects of behavioral manipulations (e.g., cueing attention) or neural perturbations (e.g., stimulation or inactivation) in a variety of multialternative tasks of perception, attention, and decision-making. © 2014 ARVO.

  16. Interactive Light Stimulus Generation with High Performance Real-Time Image Processing and Simple Scripting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    László Szécsi

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Light stimulation with precise and complex spatial and temporal modulation is demanded by a series of research fields like visual neuroscience, optogenetics, ophthalmology, and visual psychophysics. We developed a user-friendly and flexible stimulus generating framework (GEARS GPU-based Eye And Retina Stimulation Software, which offers access to GPU computing power, and allows interactive modification of stimulus parameters during experiments. Furthermore, it has built-in support for driving external equipment, as well as for synchronization tasks, via USB ports. The use of GEARS does not require elaborate programming skills. The necessary scripting is visually aided by an intuitive interface, while the details of the underlying software and hardware components remain hidden. Internally, the software is a C++/Python hybrid using OpenGL graphics. Computations are performed on the GPU, and are defined in the GLSL shading language. However, all GPU settings, including the GPU shader programs, are automatically generated by GEARS. This is configured through a method encountered in game programming, which allows high flexibility: stimuli are straightforwardly composed using a broad library of basic components. Stimulus rendering is implemented solely in C++, therefore intermediary libraries for interfacing could be omitted. This enables the program to perform computationally demanding tasks like en-masse random number generation or real-time image processing by local and global operations.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Interactive Light Stimulus Generation with High Performance Real-Time Image Processing and Simple Scripting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szécsi, László; Kacsó, Ágota; Zeck, Günther; Hantz, Péter

    2017-01-01

    Light stimulation with precise and complex spatial and temporal modulation is demanded by a series of research fields like visual neuroscience, optogenetics, ophthalmology, and visual psychophysics. We developed a user-friendly and flexible stimulus generating framework (GEARS GPU-based Eye And Retina Stimulation Software), which offers access to GPU computing power, and allows interactive modification of stimulus parameters during experiments. Furthermore, it has built-in support for driving external equipment, as well as for synchronization tasks, via USB ports. The use of GEARS does not require elaborate programming skills. The necessary scripting is visually aided by an intuitive interface, while the details of the underlying software and hardware components remain hidden. Internally, the software is a C++/Python hybrid using OpenGL graphics. Computations are performed on the GPU, and are defined in the GLSL shading language. However, all GPU settings, including the GPU shader programs, are automatically generated by GEARS. This is configured through a method encountered in game programming, which allows high flexibility: stimuli are straightforwardly composed using a broad library of basic components. Stimulus rendering is implemented solely in C++, therefore intermediary libraries for interfacing could be omitted. This enables the program to perform computationally demanding tasks like en-masse random number generation or real-time image processing by local and global operations.

  19. Concurrent deployment of visual attention and response selection bottleneck in a dual-task: Electrophysiological and behavioural evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimer, Christina B; Strobach, Tilo; Schubert, Torsten

    2017-12-01

    Visual attention and response selection are limited in capacity. Here, we investigated whether visual attention requires the same bottleneck mechanism as response selection in a dual-task of the psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm. The dual-task consisted of an auditory two-choice discrimination Task 1 and a conjunction search Task 2, which were presented at variable temporal intervals (stimulus onset asynchrony, SOA). In conjunction search, visual attention is required to select items and to bind their features resulting in a serial search process around the items in the search display (i.e., set size). We measured the reaction time of the visual search task (RT2) and the N2pc, an event-related potential (ERP), which reflects lateralized visual attention processes. If the response selection processes in Task 1 influence the visual attention processes in Task 2, N2pc latency and amplitude would be delayed and attenuated at short SOA compared to long SOA. The results, however, showed that latency and amplitude were independent of SOA, indicating that visual attention was concurrently deployed to response selection. Moreover, the RT2 analysis revealed an underadditive interaction of SOA and set size. We concluded that visual attention does not require the same bottleneck mechanism as response selection in dual-tasks.

  20. Asymmetrical learning between a tactile and visual serial RT task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abrahamse, E.L.; van der Lubbe, Robert Henricus Johannes; Verwey, Willem B.

    2007-01-01

    According to many researchers, implicit learning in the serial reaction-time task is predominantly motor based and therefore should be independent of stimulus modality. Previous research on the task, however, has focused almost completely on the visual domain. Here we investigated sequence learning

  1. Does Task-Set Reconfiguration Create Cognitive Slack?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Sam J.

    2005-01-01

    C. Oriet and P. Jolicoeur (see record 2003-08747-016) reported 2 experiments in which the perceptual contrast of stimuli was manipulated in a task-switching paradigm. They failed to observe an interaction in the reaction time data between task switching, perceptual contrast, and response-stimulus interval. Using the locus of slack logic, they…

  2. Continuous Performance Tasks: Not Just about Sustaining Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roebuck, Hettie; Freigang, Claudia; Barry, Johanna G.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Continuous performance tasks (CPTs) are used to measure individual differences in sustained attention. Many different stimuli have been used as response targets without consideration of their impact on task performance. Here, we compared CPT performance in typically developing adults and children to assess the role of stimulus processing…

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Autoshaping in the rat: conditioned licking response to a stimulus that signals sucrose reinforcement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reilly, Steve; Grutzmacher, Richard P.

    2002-07-31

    The present experiments were designed to determine if repeated presentations of an empty sipper tube (the conditioned stimulus or CS) with the response-independent delivery of a sucrose solution (the unconditioned stimulus or US) from a second spout results in the development of Pavlovian conditioned responding. In Experiment 1, rats in the experimental condition received paired CS-US presentations whereas subjects in the control condition were exposed to random presentations of CS and US. In Experiment 2, an additional control condition (CS alone) was included and, to encourage generalized responding between the US and CS, the CS tube was filled with water for all groups. The results of both experiments indicate that the CS-directed responding in the paired CS-US condition was Pavlovian in nature. Thus, the present procedure serves as an autoshaping task in which conditioned licking is generated.

  8. Effects of stimulus pair orientation and hand switching on reaction time estimates of interhemispheric transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leblanc-Sirois, Yanick; Braun, Claude M J; Elie-Fortier, Jonathan

    2018-03-26

    Two behavioral estimates of interhemispheric transfer time, the crossed-uncrossed difference (CUD) and the unilateral field advantage (UFA), are thought to, respectively, index transfer of premotor and visual information across the corpus callosum in neurotypical participants. However, no attempt to manipulate visual and motor contingencies in a set of tasks while measuring the CUD and the UFA has yet been reported. In two go/no-go comparison experiments, stimulus pair orientations were manipulated. The hand of response changed after each correct response in the second, but not the first experiment. No correlation was found between the CUD and the UFA, supporting the hypothesis that these two measures index different types of information transfer across hemispheres. An effect of manipulation of stimulus pair orientation on UFAs was attributed to the homotopy of callosal fibers transferring visual information, while an effect of hand switching on CUDs was attributed mostly to spatial compatibility.

  9. The Facial Expression Action Stimulus Test. A test battery for the assessment of face memory, face and object perception, configuration processing and facial expression recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatrice eDe Gelder

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available There are many ways to assess face perception skills. In this study, we describe a novel task battery FEAST (Facial Expression Action Stimulus Test developed to test recognition of identity and expressions of human faces as well as stimulus control categories. The FEAST consists of a neutral and emotional face memory task, a face and object identity matching task, a face and house part-to-whole matching task, and a human and animal facial expression matching task. The identity and part-to-whole matching tasks contain both upright and inverted conditions. The results provide reference data of a healthy sample of controls in two age groups for future users of the FEAST.

  10. Are objects the same as groups? ERP correlates of spatial attentional guidance by irrelevant feature similarity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasai, Tetsuko; Moriya, Hiroki; Hirano, Shingo

    2011-07-05

    It has been proposed that the most fundamental units of attentional selection are "objects" that are grouped according to Gestalt factors such as similarity or connectedness. Previous studies using event-related potentials (ERPs) have shown that object-based attention is associated with modulations of the visual-evoked N1 component, which reflects an early cortical mechanism that is shared with spatial attention. However, these studies only examined the case of perceptually continuous objects. The present study examined the case of separate objects that are grouped according to feature similarity (color, shape) by indexing lateralized potentials at posterior sites in a sustained-attention task that involved bilateral stimulus arrays. A behavioral object effect was found only for task-relevant shape similarity. Electrophysiological results indicated that attention was guided to the task-irrelevant side of the visual field due to achromatic-color similarity in N1 (155-205 ms post-stimulus) and early N2 (210-260 ms) and due to shape similarity in early N2 and late N2 (280-400 ms) latency ranges. These results are discussed in terms of selection mechanisms and object/group representations. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Auditory proactive interference in monkeys: the roles of stimulus set size and intertrial interval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bigelow, James; Poremba, Amy

    2013-09-01

    We conducted two experiments to examine the influences of stimulus set size (the number of stimuli that are used throughout the session) and intertrial interval (ITI, the elapsed time between trials) in auditory short-term memory in monkeys. We used an auditory delayed matching-to-sample task wherein the animals had to indicate whether two sounds separated by a 5-s retention interval were the same (match trials) or different (nonmatch trials). In Experiment 1, we randomly assigned stimulus set sizes of 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, or 192 (trial-unique) for each session of 128 trials. Consistent with previous visual studies, overall accuracy was consistently lower when smaller stimulus set sizes were used. Further analyses revealed that these effects were primarily caused by an increase in incorrect "same" responses on nonmatch trials. In Experiment 2, we held the stimulus set size constant at four for each session and alternately set the ITI at 5, 10, or 20 s. Overall accuracy improved when the ITI was increased from 5 to 10 s, but it was the same across the 10- and 20-s conditions. As in Experiment 1, the overall decrease in accuracy during the 5-s condition was caused by a greater number of false "match" responses on nonmatch trials. Taken together, Experiments 1 and 2 showed that auditory short-term memory in monkeys is highly susceptible to proactive interference caused by stimulus repetition. Additional analyses of the data from Experiment 1 suggested that monkeys may make same-different judgments on the basis of a familiarity criterion that is adjusted by error-related feedback.

  12. 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

  13. Interactions between the spatial and temporal stimulus factors that influence multisensory integration in human performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevenson, Ryan A; Fister, Juliane Krueger; Barnett, Zachary P; Nidiffer, Aaron R; Wallace, Mark T

    2012-05-01

    In natural environments, human sensory systems work in a coordinated and integrated manner to perceive and respond to external events. Previous research has shown that the spatial and temporal relationships of sensory signals are paramount in determining how information is integrated across sensory modalities, but in ecologically plausible settings, these factors are not independent. In the current study, we provide a novel exploration of the impact on behavioral performance for systematic manipulations of the spatial location and temporal synchrony of a visual-auditory stimulus pair. Simple auditory and visual stimuli were presented across a range of spatial locations and stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs), and participants performed both a spatial localization and simultaneity judgment task. Response times in localizing paired visual-auditory stimuli were slower in the periphery and at larger SOAs, but most importantly, an interaction was found between the two factors, in which the effect of SOA was greater in peripheral as opposed to central locations. Simultaneity judgments also revealed a novel interaction between space and time: individuals were more likely to judge stimuli as synchronous when occurring in the periphery at large SOAs. The results of this study provide novel insights into (a) how the speed of spatial localization of an audiovisual stimulus is affected by location and temporal coincidence and the interaction between these two factors and (b) how the location of a multisensory stimulus impacts judgments concerning the temporal relationship of the paired stimuli. These findings provide strong evidence for a complex interdependency between spatial location and temporal structure in determining the ultimate behavioral and perceptual outcome associated with a paired multisensory (i.e., visual-auditory) stimulus.

  14. The effect of stimulus modality on signal detection: implications for assessing the safety of in-vehicle technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merat, Natasha; Jamson, A Hamish

    2008-02-01

    This study examined the effect of two in-vehicle information systems (IVIS) on signal detection in the visual, auditory, and tactile modalities; established whether the detrimental effects of an IVIS on driving could be quantified by these detection tasks; and examined the effect of stimulus modality on signal detection. The peripheral detection task has been used widely for assessing the effects of an IVIS on driving. However, performance on this task relies on drivers' ability to see a series of LEDs, which can be problematic in field tests (e.g., on sunny days). Participants responded to one of three detection tasks during a simulated driving experiment. The effect of IVIS interaction on these detection tasks was also measured. Reduced performance in the detection tasks was assumed to indicate a decline in drivers' ability to handle sudden events in the driving task. Response time to all detection tasks increased by around 200 ms when drivers performed the IVIS tasks, as compared with baseline driving. Analyses of variance and comparison of effect sizes showed the effects of these two IVISs to be the same across the three detection tasks. These detection tasks are useful for quantifying the safety of an IVIS during driving. The absence of a difference in signal detection by modality suggests that performance on these tasks relies on general attentional resources and is not modality specific. The signal detection tasks employed here should be further investigated for their suitability in assessing the safety of in-vehicle systems.

  15. Automatic Retrieval of Newly Instructed Cue-Task Associations Seen in Task-Conflict Effects in the First Trial after Cue-Task Instructions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meiran, Nachshon; Pereg, Maayan

    2017-01-01

    Novel stimulus-response associations are retrieved automatically even without prior practice. Is this true for novel cue-task associations? The experiment involved miniblocks comprising three phases and task switching. In the INSTRUCTION phase, two new stimuli (or familiar cues) were arbitrarily assigned as cues for up-down/right-left tasks performed on placeholder locations. In the UNIVALENT phase, there was no task cue since placeholder's location afforded one task but the placeholders were the stimuli that we assigned as task cues for the following BIVALENT phase (involving target locations affording both tasks). Thus, participants held the novel cue-task associations in memory while executing the UNIVALENT phase. Results show poorer performance in the first univalent trial when the placeholder was associated with the opposite task (incompatible) than when it was compatible, an effect that was numerically larger with newly instructed cues than with familiar cues. These results indicate automatic retrieval of newly instructed cue-task associations.

  16. 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

  17. Perpendicularity misjudgments caused by contextual stimulus elements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulatov, Aleksandr; Bulatova, Natalija; Surkys, Tadas

    2012-10-15

    It has been demonstrated in previous studies that the illusions of extent of the Brentano type can be explained by the perceptual positional shifts of the stimulus terminators in direction of the centers-of-masses (centroids) of adjacent contextual flanks [Bulatov, A. et al. (2011). Contextual flanks' tilting and magnitude of illusion of extent. Vision Research, 51(1), 58-64]. In the present study, the applicability of the centroid approach to explain the right-angle misjudgments was tested psychophysically using stimuli composed of three small disks (dots) forming an imaginary rectangular triangle. Stimuli comprised the Müller-Lyer wings or line segments (bars) as the contextual distracters rotated around the vertices of the triangle, and changes in the magnitude of the illusion of perpendicularity were measured in a set of experiments. A good resemblance between the experimental data and theoretical predictions obtained strongly supports the suggestion regarding the common "centroid" origin of the illusions of extent of the Brentano type and misperception of the perpendicularity investigated. 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

  18. 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

  19. Optimal spatiotemporal representation of multichannel EEG for recognition of brain states associated with distinct visual stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hramov, Alexander; Musatov, Vyacheslav Yu.; Runnova, Anastasija E.; Efremova, Tatiana Yu.; Koronovskii, Alexey A.; Pisarchik, Alexander N.

    2018-04-01

    In the paper we propose an approach based on artificial neural networks for recognition of different human brain states associated with distinct visual stimulus. Based on the developed numerical technique and the analysis of obtained experimental multichannel EEG data, we optimize the spatiotemporal representation of multichannel EEG to provide close to 97% accuracy in recognition of the EEG brain states during visual perception. Different interpretations of an ambiguous image produce different oscillatory patterns in the human EEG with similar features for every interpretation. Since these features are inherent to all subjects, a single artificial network can classify with high quality the associated brain states of other subjects.

  20. 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

  1. 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…

  2. Affective salience can reverse the effects of stimulus-driven salience on eye movements in complex scenes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaqing eNiu

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available In natural vision both stimulus features and cognitive/affective factors influence an observer's attention. However, the relationship between stimulus-driven (bottom-up and cognitive/affective (top-down factors remains controversial: Can affective salience counteract strong visual stimulus signals and shift attention allocation irrespective of bottom-up features? Is there any difference between negative and positive scenes in terms of their influence on attention deployment? Here we examined the impact of affective factors on eye movement behavior, to understand the competition between visual stimulus-driven salience and affective salience and how they affect gaze allocation in complex scene viewing. Building on our previous research, we compared predictions generated by a visual salience model with measures indexing participant-identified emotionally meaningful regions of each image. To examine how eye movement behaviour differs for negative, positive, and neutral scenes, we examined the influence of affective salience in capturing attention according to emotional valence. Taken together, our results show that affective salience can override stimulus-driven salience and overall emotional valence can determine attention allocation in complex scenes. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that cognitive/affective factors play a dominant role in active gaze control.

  3. 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.

  4. Visual attention to features by associative learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gozli, Davood G; Moskowitz, Joshua B; Pratt, Jay

    2014-11-01

    Expecting a particular stimulus can facilitate processing of that stimulus over others, but what is the fate of other stimuli that are known to co-occur with the expected stimulus? This study examined the impact of learned association on feature-based attention. The findings show that the effectiveness of an uninformative color transient in orienting attention can change by learned associations between colors and the expected target shape. In an initial acquisition phase, participants learned two distinct sequences of stimulus-response-outcome, where stimuli were defined by shape ('S' vs. 'H'), responses were localized key-presses (left vs. right), and outcomes were colors (red vs. green). Next, in a test phase, while expecting a target shape (80% probable), participants showed reliable attentional orienting to the color transient associated with the target shape, and showed no attentional orienting with the color associated with the alternative target shape. This bias seemed to be driven by learned association between shapes and colors, and not modulated by the response. In addition, the bias seemed to depend on observing target-color conjunctions, since encountering the two features disjunctively (without spatiotemporal overlap) did not replicate the findings. We conclude that associative learning - likely mediated by mechanisms underlying visual object representation - can extend the impact of goal-driven attention to features associated with a target stimulus. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Pupil size reflects the focus of feature-based attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binda, Paola; Pereverzeva, Maria; Murray, Scott O

    2014-12-15

    We measured pupil size in adult human subjects while they selectively attended to one of two surfaces, bright and dark, defined by coherently moving dots. The two surfaces were presented at the same location; therefore, subjects could select the cued surface only on the basis of its features. With no luminance change in the stimulus, we find that pupil size was smaller when the bright surface was attended and larger when the dark surface was attended: an effect of feature-based (or surface-based) attention. With the same surfaces at nonoverlapping locations, we find a similar effect of spatial attention. The pupil size modulation cannot be accounted for by differences in eye position and by other variables known to affect pupil size such as task difficulty, accommodation, or the mere anticipation (imagery) of bright/dark stimuli. We conclude that pupil size reflects not just luminance or cognitive state, but the interaction between the two: it reflects which luminance level in the visual scene is relevant for the task at hand. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  6. Executive control of stimulus-driven and goal-directed attention in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Yanmei; Allen, Richard J; Baddeley, Alan D; Hitch, Graham J

    2016-10-01

    We examined the role of executive control in stimulus-driven and goal-directed attention in visual working memory using probed recall of a series of objects, a task that allows study of the dynamics of storage through analysis of serial position data. Experiment 1 examined whether executive control underlies goal-directed prioritization of certain items within the sequence. Instructing participants to prioritize either the first or final item resulted in improved recall for these items, and an increase in concurrent task difficulty reduced or abolished these gains, consistent with their dependence on executive control. Experiment 2 examined whether executive control is also involved in the disruption caused by a post-series visual distractor (suffix). A demanding concurrent task disrupted memory for all items except the most recent, whereas a suffix disrupted only the most recent items. There was no interaction when concurrent load and suffix were combined, suggesting that deploying selective attention to ignore the distractor did not draw upon executive resources. A final experiment replicated the independent interfering effects of suffix and concurrent load while ruling out possible artifacts. We discuss the results in terms of a domain-general episodic buffer in which information is retained in a transient, limited capacity privileged state, influenced by both stimulus-driven and goal-directed processes. The privileged state contains the most recent environmental input together with goal-relevant representations being actively maintained using executive resources.

  7. Polarity Correspondence: A General Principle for Performance of Speeded Binary Classification Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proctor, Robert W.; Cho, Yang Seok

    2006-01-01

    Differences in performance with various stimulus-response mappings are among the most prevalent findings for binary choice reaction tasks. The authors show that perceptual or conceptual similarity is not necessary to obtain mapping effects; a type of structural similarity is sufficient. Specifically, stimulus and response alternatives are coded as…

  8. Relevance-based control over visual attention is fast and interdependent with stimulus-driven capture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nordfang, Maria; Bundesen, Claus

    2012-01-01

    or distractor) was a color singleton, but the probability that the singleton was a target was just the same as the probability that a nonsingleton was a target. Participants showed significant effects of both feature contrast and task relevance. The probability of correctly reporting a singleton target...... that high local feature contrast attracts attention independently of task-relevance. Yet, recent studies have provided evidence that effects of task-irrelevant feature contrast interact with the task-relevance of the object in question (Nordfang, 2011). In a new experiment, display size was kept constant...... was significantly higher than the probability of reporting a nonsingleton target. The probability of correctly reporting a given target also was significantly higher for the displays with 2 targets and 6 distractors than for the 8-target displays, revealing selectivity based on task-relevance. This effect...

  9. Stimulus-response coupling in platelets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huang, E.M.

    1986-01-01

    To understand the mechanism of stimulus-response coupling in platelets, the potentiating effect of succinate and lithium on platelet activation was examined. The action of succinate was immediate; preincubation with succinate did not lead to desensitization. Succinate was comparable to ADP in lowering cAMP levels previously elevated by PGl 2 . Since inhibition of cAMP is not a prerequisite for platelet activation, the mechanism of potentiation of succinate remains undefined. Lithium has also been shown to inhibit adenylate cyclase in PGl 2 -pretreated platelets. Lithium, however, can also inhibit inositol phosphate (InsP) phosphatase and lead to an accumulation of InsP. In human platelets, lithium also enhanced the thrombin-induced accumulation of [ 3 H]inositol-labelled inositol trisphosphate (InsP 3 ), and inositol bisphosphate (InsP 2 ). One hour after thrombin addition, all 3 inositol phosphates returned to near basal levels. In the presence of lithium, while labelled InsP 2 and InsP 3 returned to their respective basal levels, the InsP level remained elevated, consistent with the known inhibitory effect of lithium on InsP phosphatase. In thrombin-stimulated platelets prelabeled with [ 32 P]phosphate, lithium led to a decrease in labelled phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate (PtdIns4P) as well as an enhanced production of labelled lysophosphatidylinositol, suggesting multiple effects of lithium on platelet phosphoinositide metabolism. These observed effects, however, occurred too slowly to be the mechanism by which lithium potentiated agonist-induced platelet activation. To study the agonist-receptor interaction, the effect of the specific, high affinity thrombin inhibitor, hirudin, on thrombin-induced accumulation of [ 3 H]inositol-labelled inositol phosphates was studied

  10. Decoupled choice-driven and stimulus-related activity in parietal neurons may be misrepresented by choice probabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaidel, Adam; DeAngelis, Gregory C; Angelaki, Dora E

    2017-09-28

    Trial-by-trial correlations between neural responses and choices (choice probabilities) are often interpreted to reflect a causal contribution of neurons to task performance. However, choice probabilities may arise from top-down, rather than bottom-up, signals. We isolated distinct sensory and decision contributions to single-unit activity recorded from the dorsal medial superior temporal (MSTd) and ventral intraparietal (VIP) areas of monkeys during perception of self-motion. Superficially, neurons in both areas show similar tuning curves during task performance. However, tuning in MSTd neurons primarily reflects sensory inputs, whereas choice-related signals dominate tuning in VIP neurons. Importantly, the choice-related activity of VIP neurons is not predictable from their stimulus tuning, and these factors are often confounded in choice probability measurements. This finding was confirmed in a subset of neurons for which stimulus tuning was measured during passive fixation. Our findings reveal decoupled stimulus and choice signals in the VIP area, and challenge our understanding of choice signals in the brain.Choice-related signals in neuronal activity may reflect bottom-up sensory processes, top-down decision-related influences, or a combination of the two. Here the authors report that choice-related activity in VIP neurons is not predictable from their stimulus tuning, and that dominant choice signals can bias the standard metric of choice preference (choice probability).

  11. Where perception meets memory: a review of repetition priming in visual search tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristjánsson, Arni; Campana, Gianluca

    2010-01-01

    What we have recently seen and attended to strongly influences how we subsequently allocate visual attention. A clear example is how repeated presentation of an object's features or location in visual search tasks facilitates subsequent detection or identification of that item, a phenomenon known as priming. Here, we review a large body of results from priming studies that suggest that a short-term implicit memory system guides our attention to recently viewed items. The nature of this memory system and the processing level at which visual priming occurs are still debated. Priming might be due to activity modulations of low-level areas coding simple stimulus characteristics or to higher level episodic memory representations of whole objects or visual scenes. Indeed, recent evidence indicates that only minor changes to the stimuli used in priming studies may alter the processing level at which priming occurs. We also review recent behavioral, neuropsychological, and neurophysiological evidence that indicates that the priming patterns are reflected in activity modulations at multiple sites along the visual pathways. We furthermore suggest that studies of priming in visual search may potentially shed important light on the nature of cortical visual representations. Our conclusion is that priming occurs at many different levels of the perceptual hierarchy, reflecting activity modulations ranging from lower to higher levels, depending on the stimulus, task, and context-in fact, the neural loci that are involved in the analysis of the stimuli for which priming effects are seen.

  12. 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.

  13. Stimulus-Response Compatibility effect in the near-far dimension: A developmental study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aurélien Richez

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigates the developmental aspect of stimulus-response compatibility effect in 8 to 11-years-old children. The task consisted in manually responding to the colour of a pawn presented on a chessboard at different distances. Manual responses were provided by reaching a proximal or distal location depending on the colour of the stimulus. We found that reaction time was affected by the conflict generated by the response suggested by the location of the stimulus and the response required according to its colour. This was not the case for movement time despite we found a higher rate of long duration movements in the incongruent than in the congruent spatial condition. The SRC effect was however observed in children older than 10 years old. These findings provide additional evidence for a reorganization of the perceptual system during the period of 8 to 10 years, integrating progressively multimodal information and preparing more efficiently the body to act in the environment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. Ultrasound as a stimulus for musculoskeletal disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ning Zhang

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Ultrasound is an inaudible form of acoustic sound wave at 20 kHz or above that is widely used in the medical field with applications including medical imaging and therapeutic stimulation. In therapeutic ultrasound, low-intensity pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS is the most widely used and studied form that generally uses acoustic waves at an intensity of 30 mW/cm2, with 200 ms pulses and 1.5 MHz. In orthopaedic applications, it is used as a biophysical stimulus for musculoskeletal tissue repair to enhance tissue regeneration. LIPUS has been shown to enhance fracture healing by shortening the time to heal and reestablishment of mechanical properties through enhancing different phases of the healing process, including the inflammatory phase, callus formation, and callus remodelling phase. Reports from in vitro studies reveal insights in the mechanism through which acoustic stimulations activate cell surface integrins that, in turn, activate various mechanical transduction pathways including FAK (focal adhesion kinase, ERK (extracellular signal-regulated kinase, PI3K, and Akt. It is then followed by the production of cyclooxygenase 2 and prostaglandin E2 to stimulate further downstream angiogenic, osteogenic, and chondrogenic cytokines, explaining the different enhancements observed in animal and clinical studies. Furthermore, LIPUS has also been shown to have remarkable effects on mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs in musculoskeletal injuries and tissue regeneration. The recruitment of MSCs to injury sites by LIPUS requires the SDF-1 (stromal cell derived factor-1/CXCR-4 signalling axis. MSCs would then differentiate differently, and this is regulated by the presence of different cytokines, which determines their fates. Other musculoskeletal applications including bone–tendon junction healing, and distraction osteogenesis are also explored, and the results are promising. However, the use of LIPUS is controversial in treating osteoporosis, with negative

  17. Putative inhibitory training of a stimulus makes it a facilitator: a within-subject comparison of visual and auditory stimuli in autoshaping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakajima, S

    2000-03-14

    Pigeons were trained with the A+, AB-, ABC+, AD- and ADE+ task where each of stimulus A and stimulus compounds ABC and ADE signalled food (positive trials), and each of stimulus compounds AB and AD signalled no food (negative trials). Stimuli A, B, C and E were small visual figures localised on a response key, and stimulus D was a white noise. Stimulus B was more effective than D as an inhibitor of responding to A during the training. After the birds learned to respond exclusively on the positive trials, effects of B and D on responding to C and E, respectively, were tested by comparing C, BC, E and DE trials. Stimulus B continuously facilitated responding to C on the BC test trials, but D's facilitative effect was observed only on the first DE test trial. Stimulus B also facilitated responding to E on BE test trials. Implications for the Rescorla-Wagner elemental model and the Pearce configural model of Pavlovian conditioning were discussed.

  18. Right-hemispheric processing of non-linguistic word features: implications for mapping language recovery after stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgaertner, Annette; Hartwigsen, Gesa; Roman Siebner, Hartwig

    2013-06-01

    Verbal stimuli often induce right-hemispheric activation in patients with aphasia after left-hemispheric stroke. This right-hemispheric activation is commonly attributed to functional reorganization within the language system. Yet previous evidence suggests that functional activation in right-hemispheric homologues of classic left-hemispheric language areas may partly be due to processing nonlinguistic perceptual features of verbal stimuli. We used functional MRI (fMRI) to clarify the role of the right hemisphere in the perception of nonlinguistic word features in healthy individuals. Participants made perceptual, semantic, or phonological decisions on the same set of auditorily and visually presented word stimuli. Perceptual decisions required judgements about stimulus-inherent changes in font size (visual modality) or fundamental frequency contour (auditory modality). The semantic judgement required subjects to decide whether a stimulus is natural or man-made; the phonologic decision required a decision on whether a stimulus contains two or three syllables. Compared to phonologic or semantic decision, nonlinguistic perceptual decisions resulted in a stronger right-hemispheric activation. Specifically, the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), an area previously suggested to support language recovery after left-hemispheric stroke, displayed modality-independent activation during perceptual processing of word stimuli. Our findings indicate that activation of the right hemisphere during language tasks may, in some instances, be driven by a "nonlinguistic perceptual processing" mode that focuses on nonlinguistic word features. This raises the possibility that stronger activation of right inferior frontal areas during language tasks in aphasic patients with left-hemispheric stroke may at least partially reflect increased attentional focus on nonlinguistic perceptual aspects of language. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. On the importance of Task 1 and error performance measures in PRP dual-task studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Schütz, Anja; Schubert, Torsten

    2015-01-01

    The psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm is a dominant research tool in the literature on dual-task performance. In this paradigm a first and second component task (i.e., Task 1 and Task 2) are presented with variable stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) and priority to perform Task 1. The main indicator of dual-task impairment in PRP situations is an increasing Task 2-RT with decreasing SOAs. This impairment is typically explained with some task components being processed strictly sequentially in the context of the prominent central bottleneck theory. This assumption could implicitly suggest that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing, i.e., decreasing SOAs do not increase reaction times (RTs) and error rates of the first task. The aim of the present review is to assess whether PRP dual-task studies included both RT and error data presentations and statistical analyses and whether studies including both data types (i.e., RTs and error rates) show data consistent with this assumption (i.e., decreasing SOAs and unaffected RTs and/or error rates in Task 1). This review demonstrates that, in contrast to RT presentations and analyses, error data is underrepresented in a substantial number of studies. Furthermore, a substantial number of studies with RT and error data showed a statistically significant impairment of Task 1 performance with decreasing SOA. Thus, these studies produced data that is not primarily consistent with the strong assumption that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing in the context of PRP dual-task situations; this calls for a more careful report and analysis of Task 1 performance in PRP studies and for a more careful consideration of theories proposing additions to the bottleneck assumption, which are sufficiently general to explain Task 1 and Task 2 effects. PMID:25904890

  20. On the importance of Task 1 and error performance measures in PRP dual-task studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Schütz, Anja; Schubert, Torsten

    2015-01-01

    The psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm is a dominant research tool in the literature on dual-task performance. In this paradigm a first and second component task (i.e., Task 1 and Task 2) are presented with variable stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) and priority to perform Task 1. The main indicator of dual-task impairment in PRP situations is an increasing Task 2-RT with decreasing SOAs. This impairment is typically explained with some task components being processed strictly sequentially in the context of the prominent central bottleneck theory. This assumption could implicitly suggest that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing, i.e., decreasing SOAs do not increase reaction times (RTs) and error rates of the first task. The aim of the present review is to assess whether PRP dual-task studies included both RT and error data presentations and statistical analyses and whether studies including both data types (i.e., RTs and error rates) show data consistent with this assumption (i.e., decreasing SOAs and unaffected RTs and/or error rates in Task 1). This review demonstrates that, in contrast to RT presentations and analyses, error data is underrepresented in a substantial number of studies. Furthermore, a substantial number of studies with RT and error data showed a statistically significant impairment of Task 1 performance with decreasing SOA. Thus, these studies produced data that is not primarily consistent with the strong assumption that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing in the context of PRP dual-task situations; this calls for a more careful report and analysis of Task 1 performance in PRP studies and for a more careful consideration of theories proposing additions to the bottleneck assumption, which are sufficiently general to explain Task 1 and Task 2 effects.

  1. The Influence of Reward Associations on Conflict Processing in the Stroop Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krebs, Ruth M.; Boehler, Carsten N.; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2010-01-01

    Performance in a behavioral task can be facilitated by associating stimulus properties with reward. In contrast, conflicting information is known to impede task performance. Here we investigated how reward associations influence the within-trial processing of conflicting information using a color-naming Stroop task in which a subset of ink colors…

  2. Task Switching and Shifting between Stopping and Going: Developmental Change in between-Trial Control Adjustments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huizing, Mariette; van der Molen, Maurits W.

    2011-01-01

    This study set out to investigate developmental differences in the ability to switch between choice tasks and to shift between Go/NoGo and choice tasks. Three age groups (7-year-olds, 11-year-olds, and young adults) were asked to consider the shape or color of a bivalued target stimulus. The participants performed a switch task in which a cue…

  3. Discrepancy of neural response between exogenous and endogenous task switching: an event-related potentials study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyajima, Maki; Toyomaki, Atsuhito; Hashimoto, Naoki; Kusumi, Ichiro; Murohashi, Harumitsu; Koyama, Tsukasa

    2012-08-01

    Task switching is a well-known cognitive paradigm to explore task-set reconfiguration processes such as rule shifting. In particular, endogenous task switching is thought to differ qualitatively from stimulus-triggered exogenous task switching. However, no previous study has examined the neural substrate of endogenous task switching. The purpose of the present study is to explore the differences between event-related potential responses to exogenous and endogenous rule switching at cue stimulus. We modified two patterns of cued switching tasks: exogenous (bottom-up) rule switching and endogenous (top-down) rule switching. In each task cue stimulus was configured to induce switching or maintaining rule. In exogenous switching tasks, late positive deflection was larger in the switch rule condition than in the maintain rule condition. However, in endogenous switching tasks late positive deflection was unexpectedly larger in the maintain-rule condition than in the switch-rule condition. These results indicate that exogenous rule switching is explicit stimulus-driven processes, whereas endogenous rule switching is implicitly parallel processes independent of external stimulus.

  4. Understanding Legacy Features with Featureous

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olszak, Andrzej; Jørgensen, Bo Nørregaard

    2011-01-01

    Java programs called Featureous that addresses this issue. Featureous allows a programmer to easily establish feature-code traceability links and to analyze their characteristics using a number of visualizations. Featureous is an extension to the NetBeans IDE, and can itself be extended by third...

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Task-set inertia and memory-consolidation bottleneck in dual tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koch, Iring; Rumiati, Raffaella I

    2006-11-01

    Three dual-task experiments examined the influence of processing a briefly presented visual object for deferred verbal report on performance in an unrelated auditory-manual reaction time (RT) task. RT was increased at short stimulus-onset asynchronies (SOAs) relative to long SOAs, showing that memory consolidation processes can produce a functional processing bottleneck in dual-task performance. In addition, the experiments manipulated the spatial compatibility of the orientation of the visual object and the side of the speeded manual response. This cross-task compatibility produced relative RT benefits only when the instruction for the visual task emphasized overlap at the level of response codes across the task sets (Experiment 1). However, once the effective task set was in place, it continued to produce cross-task compatibility effects even in single-task situations ("ignore" trials in Experiment 2) and when instructions for the visual task did not explicitly require spatial coding of object orientation (Experiment 3). Taken together, the data suggest a considerable degree of task-set inertia in dual-task performance, which is also reinforced by finding costs of switching task sequences (e.g., AC --> BC vs. BC --> BC) in Experiment 3.

  8. Youth job market specific features

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evgeniya Yu. Zhuravleva

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The article considers youth job market peculiarities, its specific features and regulation means, determines theoretical and application tasks of qualitative and quantitative comparison of vocations, which are highly in demand at the job market.

  9. Effects of rhythmic stimulus presentation on oscillatory brain activity: the physiology of cueing in Parkinson’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    te Woerd, Erik S.; Oostenveld, Robert; Bloem, Bastiaan R.; de Lange, Floris P.; Praamstra, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The basal ganglia play an important role in beat perception and patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) are impaired in perception of beat-based rhythms. Rhythmic cues are nonetheless beneficial in gait rehabilitation, raising the question how rhythm improves movement in PD. We addressed this question with magnetoencephalography recordings during a choice response task with rhythmic and non-rhythmic modes of stimulus presentation. Analyses focused on (i) entrainment of slow oscillations, (ii) ...

  10. 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)

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. [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.

  14. Processing irrelevant location information: practice and transfer effects in a Simon task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan B Welch

    Full Text Available How humans produce cognitively driven fine motor movements is a question of fundamental importance in how we interact with the world around us. For example, we are exposed to a constant stream of information and we must select the information that is most relevant by which to guide our actions. In the present study, we employed a well-known behavioral assay called the Simon task to better understand how humans are able to learn to filter out irrelevant information. We trained subjects for four days with a visual stimulus presented, alternately, in central and lateral locations. Subjects responded with one hand moving a joystick in either the left or right direction. They were instructed to ignore the irrelevant location information and respond based on color (e.g. red to the right and green to the left. On the fifth day, an additional testing session was conducted where the task changed and the subjects had to respond by shape (e.g. triangle to the right and rectangle to the left. They were instructed to ignore the color and location, and respond based solely on the task relevant shape. We found that the magnitude of the Simon effect decreases with training, however it returns in the first few trials after a break. Furthermore, task-defined associations between response direction and color did not significantly affect the Simon effect based on shape, and no significant associative learning from the specific stimulus-response features was found for the centrally located stimuli. We discuss how these results are consistent with a model involving route suppression/gating of the irrelevant location information. Much of the learning seems to be driven by subjects learning to suppress irrelevant location information, however, this seems to be an active inhibition process that requires a few trials of experience to engage.

  15. On the importance of Task 1 and error performance measures in PRP dual-task studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tilo eStrobach

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Psychological Refractory Period (PRP paradigm is a dominant research tool in the literature on dual-task performance. In this paradigm a first and second component task (i.e., Task 1 and 2 are presented with variable stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs and priority to perform Task 1. The main indicator of dual-task impairment in PRP situations is an increasing Task 2-RT with decreasing SOAs. This impairment is typically explained with some task components being processed strictly sequentially in the context of the prominent central bottleneck theory. This assumption could implicitly suggest that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing, i.e. decreasing SOAs do not increase RTs and error rates of the first task. The aim of the present review is to assess whether PRP dual-task studies included both RT and error data presentations and statistical analyses and whether studies including both data types (i.e., RTs and error rates show data consistent with this assumption (i.e., decreasing SOAs and unaffected RTs and/ or error rates in Task 1. This review demonstrates that, in contrast to RT presentations and analyses, error data is underrepresented in a substantial number of studies. Furthermore, a substantial number of studies with RT and error data showed a statistically significant impairment of Task 1 performance with decreasing SOA. Thus, these studies produced data that is not primarily consistent with the strong assumption that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing in the context of PRP dual-task situations; this calls for a more careful report and analysis of Task 1 performance in PRP studies and for a more careful consideration of theories proposing additions to the bottleneck assumption, which are sufficiently general to explain Task 1 and Task 2 effects.

  16. 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...

  17. Auditory Stimulus Processing and Task Learning Are Adequate in Dyslexia, but Benefits from Regularities Are Reduced

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daikhin, Luba; Raviv, Ofri; Ahissar, Merav

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The reading deficit for people with dyslexia is typically associated with linguistic, memory, and perceptual-discrimination difficulties, whose relation to reading impairment is disputed. We proposed that automatic detection and usage of serial sound regularities for individuals with dyslexia is impaired (anchoring deficit hypothesis),…

  18. Music perception and imagery in EEG: Alpha band effects of task and stimulus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaefer, R.S.; Vlek, R.J.; Desain, P.W.M.

    2011-01-01

    Previous work has shown that mental imagination of sound generally elicits an increase of alpha band activity (8-12Hz) in the electroencephalogram (EEG). In addition, alpha activity has been shown to be related to music processing. In the current study, EEG signatures were investigated for

  19. Attention and emotion: an ERP analysis of facilitated emotional stimulus processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schupp, Harald T; Junghöfer, Markus; Weike, Almut I; Hamm, Alfons O

    2003-06-11

    Recent event-related potential studies observed an early posterior negativity (EPN) reflecting facilitated processing of emotional images. The present study explored if the facilitated processing of emotional pictures is sustained while subjects perform an explicit non-emotional attention task. EEG was recorded from 129 channels while subjects viewed a rapid continuous stream of images containing emotional pictures as well as task-related checkerboard images. As expected, explicit selective attention to target images elicited large P3 waves. Interestingly, emotional stimuli guided stimulus-driven selective encoding as reflected by augmented EPN amplitudes to emotional stimuli, in particular to stimuli of evolutionary significance (erotic contents, mutilations, and threat). These data demonstrate the selective encoding of emotional stimuli while top-down attentional control was directed towards non-emotional target stimuli.

  20. Uncovering effects of self-control and stimulus-driven action selection on the sense of agency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yuru; Damen, Tom G E; Aarts, Henk

    2017-10-01

    The sense of agency refers to feelings of causing one's own action and resulting effect. Previous research indicates that voluntary action selection is an important factor in shaping the sense of agency. Whereas the volitional nature of the sense of agency is well documented, the present study examined whether agency is modulated when action selection shifts from self-control to a more automatic stimulus-driven process. Seventy-two participants performed an auditory Simon task including congruent and incongruent trials to generate automatic stimulus-driven vs. more self-control driven action, respectively. Responses in the Simon task produced a tone and agency was assessed with the intentional binding task - an implicit measure of agency. Results showed a Simon effect and temporal binding effect. However, temporal binding was independent of congruency. These findings suggest that temporal binding, a window to the sense of agency, emerges for both automatic stimulus-driven actions and self-controlled actions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  4. Feature Article

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education. Feature Article. Articles in Resonance – Journal of Science Education. Volume 1 Issue 1 January 1996 pp 80-85 Feature Article. What's New in Computers Windows 95 · Vijnan Shastri · More Details Fulltext PDF. Volume 1 Issue 1 January 1996 pp 86-89 Feature ...

  5. 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.

  6. High-Intensity Exercise as a Dishabituating Stimulus Restores Counterregulatory Responses in Recurrently Hypoglycemic Rodents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeilly, Alison D; Gallagher, Jennifer R; Huang, Jeffrey T-J; Ashford, Michael L J; McCrimmon, Rory J

    2017-06-01

    Hypoglycemia is a major adverse effect of insulin therapy for people with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Profound defects in the normal counterregulatory response to hypoglycemia explain the frequency of hypoglycemia occurrence in T1D. Defective counterregulation results to a large extent from prior exposure to hypoglycemia per se, leading to a condition called impaired awareness of hypoglycemia (IAH), the cause of which is unknown. In the current study, we investigate the hypothesis that IAH develops through a special type of adaptive memory referred to as habituation. To test this hypothesis, we used a novel intense stimulus (high-intensity exercise) to demonstrate two classic features of a habituated response, namely dishabituation and response recovery. We demonstrate that after recurrent hypoglycemia the introduction of a novel dishabituating stimulus (a single burst of high-intensity exercise) in male Sprague-Dawley rats restores the defective hypoglycemia counterregulatory response. In addition, the rats showed an enhanced response to the novel stimulus (response recovery). We make the further observation using proteomic analysis of hypothalamic extracts that high-intensity exercise in recurrently hypoglycemic rats increases levels of a number of proteins linked with brain-derived neurotrophic factor signaling. These findings may lead to novel therapeutic approaches for individuals with T1D and IAH. © 2017 by the American Diabetes Association.

  7. Synaptic heterogeneity and stimulus-induced modulation of depression in central synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter, J D; Milton, J G

    2001-08-01

    Short-term plasticity is a pervasive feature of synapses. Synapses exhibit many forms of plasticity operating over a range of time scales. We develop an optimization method that allows rapid characterization of synapses with multiple time scales of facilitation and depression. Investigation of paired neurons that are postsynaptic to the same identified interneuron in the buccal ganglion of Aplysia reveals that the responses of the two neurons differ in the magnitude of synaptic depression. Also, for single neurons, prolonged stimulation of the presynaptic neuron causes stimulus-induced increases in the early phase of synaptic depression. These observations can be described by a model that incorporates two availability factors, e.g., depletable vesicle pools or desensitizing receptor populations, with different time courses of recovery, and a single facilitation component. This model accurately predicts the responses to novel stimuli. The source of synaptic heterogeneity is identified with variations in the relative sizes of the two availability factors, and the stimulus-induced decrement in the early synaptic response is explained by a slowing of the recovery rate of one of the availability factors. The synaptic heterogeneity and stimulus-induced modifications in synaptic depression observed here emphasize that synaptic efficacy depends on both the individual properties of synapses and their past history.

  8. Emotion recognition abilities across stimulus modalities in schizophrenia and the role of visual attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Claire; Pinkham, Amy E; Kelsven, Skylar; Sasson, Noah J

    2013-12-01

    Emotion can be expressed by both the voice and face, and previous work suggests that presentation modality may impact emotion recognition performance in individuals with schizophrenia. We investigated the effect of stimulus modality on emotion recognition accuracy and the potential role of visual attention to faces in emotion recognition abilities. Thirty-one patients who met DSM-IV criteria for schizophrenia (n=8) or schizoaffective disorder (n=23) and 30 non-clinical control individuals participated. Both groups identified emotional expressions in three different conditions: audio only, visual only, combined audiovisual. In the visual only and combined conditions, time spent visually fixating salient features of the face were recorded. Patients were significantly less accurate than controls in emotion recognition during both the audio and visual only conditions but did not differ from controls on the combined condition. Analysis of visual scanning behaviors demonstrated that patients attended less than healthy individuals to the mouth in the visual condition but did not differ in visual attention to salient facial features in the combined condition, which may in part explain the absence of a deficit for patients in this condition. Collectively, these findings demonstrate that patients benefit from multimodal stimulus presentations of emotion and support hypotheses that visual attention to salient facial features may serve as a mechanism for accurate emotion identification. © 2013.

  9. Unique sudden onsets capture attention even when observers are in feature-search mode.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spalek, Thomas M; Yanko, Matthew R; Poiese, Paola; Lagroix, Hayley E P

    2012-01-01

    Two sources of attentional capture have been proposed: stimulus-driven (exogenous) and goal-oriented (endogenous). A resolution between these modes of capture has not been straightforward. Even such a clearly exogenous event as the sudden onset of a stimulus can be said to capture attention endogenously if observers operate in singleton-detection mode rather than feature-search mode. In four experiments we show that a unique sudden onset captures attention even when observers are in feature-search mode. The displays were rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) streams of differently coloured letters with the target letter defined by a specific colour. Distractors were four #s, one of the target colour, surrounding one of the non-target letters. Capture was substantially reduced when the onset of the distractor array was not unique because it was preceded by other sets of four grey # arrays in the RSVP stream. This provides unambiguous evidence that attention can be captured both exogenously and endogenously within a single task.

  10. Feature integration and spatial attention: common processes for endogenous and exogenous orienting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderickx, David; Maetens, Kathleen; Soetens, Eric

    2010-05-01

    Briand (J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 24:1243-1256, 1998) and Briand and Klein (J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 13:228-241, 1987) demonstrated that spatial cueing effects are larger for detecting conjunction of features than for detecting simple features when spatial attention is oriented exogenously, and not when attention is oriented endogenously. Their results were interpreted as if only exogenous attention affects the posterior spatial attention system that performs the feature binding function attributed to spatial attention by Treisman's feature integration theory (FIT; 1980). In a series of 6 experiments, we attempted to replicate Briand's findings. Manipulations of distractor string size and symmetry of stimulus presentation left and right from fixation were implemented in Posner's cueing paradigm. The data indicate that both exogenous and endogenous cueing address the same attentional mechanism needed for feature binding. The results also limit the generalisability of Briand's proposal concerning the role of exogenous attention in feature integration. Furthermore, the importance to control the effect of unintended attentional capture in a cueing task is demonstrated.

  11. Feature activation during word recognition: action, visual, and associative-semantic priming effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin J.Y. Lam

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Embodied theories of language postulate that language meaning is stored in modality-specific brain areas generally involved in perception and action in the real world. However, the temporal dynamics of the interaction between modality-specific information and lexical-semantic processing remain unclear. We investigated the relative timing at which two types of modality-specific information (action-based and visual-form information contribute to lexical-semantic comprehension. To this end, we applied a behavioral priming paradigm in which prime and target words were related with respect to (1 action features, (2 visual features, or (3 semantically associative information. Using a Go/No-Go lexical decision task, priming effects were measured across four different inter-stimulus intervals (ISI = 100 ms, 250 ms, 400 ms, and 1,000 ms to determine the relative time course of the different features . Notably, action priming effects were found in ISIs of 100 ms, 250 ms, and 1,000 ms whereas a visual priming effect was seen only in the ISI of 1,000 ms. Importantly, our data suggest that features follow different time courses of activation during word recognition. In this regard, feature activation is dynamic, measurable in specific time windows but not in others. Thus the current study (1 demonstrates how multiple ISIs can be used within an experiment to help chart the time course of feature activation and (2 provides new evidence for embodied theories of language.

  12. The extraction of motion-onset VEP BCI features based on deep learning and compressed sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Teng; Li, Hui; Yang, Hao; Lv, Xulin; Li, Peiyang; Liu, Tiejun; Yao, Dezhong; Xu, Peng

    2017-01-01

    Motion-onset visual evoked potentials (mVEP) can provide a softer stimulus with reduced fatigue, and it has potential applications for brain computer interface(BCI)systems. However, the mVEP waveform is seriously masked in the strong background EEG activities, and an effective approach is needed to extract the corresponding mVEP features to perform task recognition for BCI control. In the current study, we combine deep learning with compressed sensing to mine discriminative mVEP information to improve the mVEP BCI performance. The deep learning and compressed sensing approach can generate the multi-modality features which can effectively improve the BCI performance with approximately 3.5% accuracy incensement over all 11 subjects and is more effective for those subjects with relatively poor performance when using the conventional features. Compared with the conventional amplitude-based mVEP feature extraction approach, the deep learning and compressed sensing approach has a higher classification accuracy and is more effective for subjects with relatively poor performance. According to the results, the deep learning and compressed sensing approach is more effective for extracting the mVEP feature to construct the corresponding BCI system, and the proposed feature extraction framework is easy to extend to other types of BCIs, such as motor imagery (MI), steady-state visual evoked potential (SSVEP)and P300. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. No psychological effect of color context in a low level vision task [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/202

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Pedley

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: A remarkable series of recent papers have shown that colour can influence performance in cognitive tasks. In particular, they suggest that viewing a participant number printed in red ink or other red ancillary stimulus elements improves performance in tasks requiring local processing and impedes performance in tasks requiring global processing whilst the reverse is true for the colour blue. The tasks in these experiments require high level cognitive processing such as analogy solving or remote association tests and the chromatic effect on local vs. global processing is presumed to involve widespread activation of the autonomic nervous system. If this is the case, we might expect to see similar effects on all local vs. global task comparisons. To test this hypothesis, we asked whether chromatic cues also influence performance in tasks involving low level visual feature integration. Methods: Subjects performed either local (contrast detection or global (form detection tasks on achromatic dynamic Glass pattern stimuli. Coloured instructions, target frames and fixation points were used to attempt to bias performance to different task types. Based on previous literature, we hypothesised that red cues would improve performance in the (local contrast detection task but would impede performance in the (global form detection task.  Results: A two-way, repeated measures, analysis of covariance (2×2 ANCOVA with gender as a covariate, revealed no influence of colour on either task, F(1,29 = 0.289, p = 0.595, partial η2 = 0.002. Additional analysis revealed no significant differences in only the first attempts of the tasks or in the improvement in performance between trials. Discussion: We conclude that motivational processes elicited by colour perception do not influence neuronal signal processing in the early visual system, in stark contrast to their putative effects on processing in higher areas.

  14. Stimulus Dependency of Object-Evoked Responses in Human Visual Cortex: An Inverse Problem for Category Specificity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graewe, Britta; De Weerd, Peter; Farivar, Reza; Castelo-Branco, Miguel

    2012-01-01

    Many studies have linked the processing of different object categories to specific event-related potentials (ERPs) such as the face-specific N170. Despite reports showing that object-related ERPs are influenced by visual stimulus features, there is consensus that these components primarily reflect categorical aspects of the stimuli. Here, we re-investigated this idea by systematically measuring the effects of visual feature manipulations on ERP responses elicited by both structure-from-motion (SFM)-defined and luminance-defined object stimuli. SFM objects elicited a novel component at 200–250 ms (N250) over parietal and posterior temporal sites. We found, however, that the N250 amplitude was unaffected by restructuring SFM stimuli into meaningless objects based on identical visual cues. This suggests that this N250 peak was not uniquely linked to categorical aspects of the objects, but is strongly determined by visual stimulus features. We provide strong support for this hypothesis by parametrically manipulating the depth range of both SFM- and luminance-defined object stimuli and showing that the N250 evoked by SFM stimuli as well as the well-known N170 to static faces were sensitive to this manipulation. Importantly, this effect could not be attributed to compromised object categorization in low depth stimuli, confirming a strong impact of visual stimulus features on object-related ERP signals. As ERP components linked with visual categorical object perception are likely determined by multiple stimulus features, this creates an interesting inverse problem when deriving specific perceptual processes from variations in ERP components. PMID:22363479

  15. The Effect of Cerebellar Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation on A Throwing Task Depends on Individual Level of Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizuguchi, Nobuaki; Katayama, Takashi; Kanosue, Kazuyuki

    2018-02-10

    The effect of cerebellar transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on motor performance remains controversial. Some studies suggest that the effect of tDCS depends upon task-difficulty and individual level of task performance. Here, we investigated whether the effect of cerebellar tDCS on the motor performance depends upon the individual's level of performance. Twenty-four naïve participants practiced dart throwing while receiving a 2-mA cerebellar tDCS for 20 min under three stimulus conditions (anodal-, cathodal-, and sham-tDCS) on separate days with a double-blind, counter-balanced cross-over design. Task performance was assessed by measuring the distance between the center of the bull's eye and the dart's position. Although task performance tended to improve throughout the practice under all stimulus conditions, improvement within a given day was not significant as compared to the first no-stimulus block. In addition, improvement did not differ among stimulation conditions. However, the magnitude of improvement was associated with an individual's level of task performance only under cathodal tDCS condition (p performance improvement only for the sub-group of participants with lower performance levels as compared to that with sham-tDCS (p task performance. Thus, cerebellar tDCS would facilitate learning of a complex motor skill task only in a subset of individuals. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Does erotic stimulus presentation design affect brain activation patterns? Event-related vs. blocked fMRI designs.

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    Bühler, Mira; Vollstädt-Klein, Sabine; Klemen, Jane; Smolka, Michael N

    2008-07-22

    Existing brain imaging studies, investigating sexual arousal via the presentation of erotic pictures or film excerpts, have mainly used blocked designs with long stimulus presentation times. To clarify how experimental functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) design affects stimulus-induced brain activity, we compared brief event-related presentation of erotic vs. neutral stimuli with blocked presentation in 10 male volunteers. Brain activation differed depending on design type in only 10% of the voxels showing task related brain activity. Differences between blocked and event-related stimulus presentation were found in occipitotemporal and temporal regions (Brodmann Area (BA) 19, 37, 48), parietal areas (BA 7, 40) and areas in the frontal lobe (BA 6, 44). Our results suggest that event-related designs might be a potential alternative when the core interest is the detection of networks associated with immediate processing of erotic stimuli.Additionally, blocked, compared to event-related, stimulus presentation allows the emergence and detection of non-specific secondary processes, such as sustained attention, motor imagery and inhibition of sexual arousal.

  17. Does erotic stimulus presentation design affect brain activation patterns? Event-related vs. blocked fMRI designs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klemen Jane

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Existing brain imaging studies, investigating sexual arousal via the presentation of erotic pictures or film excerpts, have mainly used blocked designs with long stimulus presentation times. Methods To clarify how experimental functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI design affects stimulus-induced brain activity, we compared brief event-related presentation of erotic vs. neutral stimuli with blocked presentation in 10 male volunteers. Results Brain activation differed depending on design type in only 10% of the voxels showing task related brain activity. Differences between blocked and event-related stimulus presentation were found in occipitotemporal and temporal regions (Brodmann Area (BA 19, 37, 48, parietal areas (BA 7, 40 and areas in the frontal lobe (BA 6, 44. Conclusion Our results suggest that event-related designs might be a potential alternative when the core interest is the detection of networks associated with immediate processing of erotic stimuli. Additionally, blocked, compared to event-related, stimulus presentation allows the emergence and detection of non-specific secondary processes, such as sustained attention, motor imagery and inhibition of sexual arousal.

  18. Statistical identification of stimulus-activated network nodes in multi-neuron voltage-sensitive dye optical recordings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fathiazar, Elham; Anemuller, Jorn; Kretzberg, Jutta

    2016-08-01

    Voltage-Sensitive Dye (VSD) imaging is an optical imaging method that allows measuring the graded voltage changes of multiple neurons simultaneously. In neuroscience, this method is used to reveal networks of neurons involved in certain tasks. However, the recorded relative dye fluorescence changes are usually low and signals are superimposed by noise and artifacts. Therefore, establishing a reliable method to identify which cells are activated by specific stimulus conditions is the first step to identify functional networks. In this paper, we present a statistical method to identify stimulus-activated network nodes as cells, whose activities during sensory network stimulation differ significantly from the un-stimulated control condition. This method is demonstrated based on voltage-sensitive dye recordings from up to 100 neurons in a ganglion of the medicinal leech responding to tactile skin stimulation. Without relying on any prior physiological knowledge, the network nodes identified by our statistical analysis were found to match well with published cell types involved in tactile stimulus processing and to be consistent across stimulus conditions and preparations.

  19. Musical Tasks and Energetic Arousal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Hayoung A; Watson, Angela L

    2018-03-08

    Music is widely recognized as a motivating stimulus. Investigators have examined the use of music to improve a variety of motivation-related outcomes; however, these studies have focused primarily on passive music listening rather than active participation in musical activities. To examine the influence of participation in musical tasks and unique participant characteristics on energetic arousal. We used a one-way Welch's ANOVA to examine the influence of musical participation (i.e., a non-musical control and four different musical task conditions) upon energetic arousal. In addition, ancillary analyses of participant characteristics including personality, age, gender, sleep, musical training, caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol revealed their possible influence upon pretest and posttest energetic arousal scores. Musical participation yielded a significant relationship with energetic arousal, F(4, 55.62) = 44.38, p = .000, estimated ω2 = 0.60. Games-Howell post hoc pairwise comparisons revealed statistically significant differences between five conditions. Descriptive statistics revealed expected differences between introverts' and extraverts' energetic arousal scores at the pretest, F(1, 115) = 6.80, p = .010, partial η2= .06; however, mean differences failed to reach significance at the posttest following musical task participation. No other measured participant characteristics yielded meaningful results. Passive tasks (i.e., listening to a story or song) were related to decreased energetic arousal, while active musical tasks (i.e., singing, rhythm tapping, and keyboard playing) were related to increased energetic arousal. Musical task participation appeared to have a differential effect for individuals with certain personality traits (i.e., extroverts and introverts).

  20. Testing a Poisson Counter Model for Visual Identification of Briefly Presented, Mutually Confusable Single Stimuli in Pure Accuracy Tasks

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    Kyllingsbaek, Soren; Markussen, Bo; Bundesen, Claus

    2012-01-01

    The authors propose and test a simple model of the time course of visual identification of briefly presented, mutually confusable single stimuli in pure accuracy tasks. The model implies that during stimulus analysis, tentative categorizations that stimulus i belongs to category j are made at a constant Poisson rate, v(i, j). The analysis is…

  1. Thalamic neuron models encode stimulus information by burst-size modulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Henry Elijah

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Thalamic neurons have been long assumed to fire in tonic mode during perceptive states, and in burst mode during sleep and unconsciousness. However, recent evidence suggests that bursts may also be relevant in the encoding of sensory information. Here we explore the neural code of such thalamic bursts. In order to assess whether the burst code is generic or whether it depends on the detailed properties of each bursting neuron, we analyzed two neuron models incorporating different levels of biological detail. One of the models contained no information of the biophysical processes entailed in spike generation, and described neuron activity at a phenomenological level. The second model represented the evolution of the individual ionic conductances involved in spiking and bursting, and required a large number of parameters. We analyzed the models' input selectivity using reverse correlation methods and information theory. We found that n-spike bursts from both models transmit information by modulating their spike count in response to changes to instantaneous input features, such as slope, phase, amplitude, etc. The stimulus feature that is most efficiently encoded by bursts, however, need not coincide with one of such classical features. We therefore searched for the optimal feature among all those that could be expressed as a linear transformation of the time-dependent input current. We found that bursting neurons transmitted 6 times more information about such more general features. The relevant events in the stimulus were located in a time window spanning ~100 ms before and ~20 ms after burst onset. Most importantly, the neural code employed by the simple and the biologically realistic models was largely the same, implying that the simple thalamic neuron model contains the essential ingredients that account for the computational properties of the thalamic burst code. Thus, our results suggest the n-spike burst code is a general property of

  2. Thalamic neuron models encode stimulus information by burst-size modulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elijah, Daniel H; Samengo, Inés; Montemurro, Marcelo A

    2015-01-01

    Thalamic neurons have been long assumed to fire in tonic mode during perceptive states, and in burst mode during sleep and unconsciousness. However, recent evidence suggests that bursts may also be relevant in the encoding of sensory information. Here, we explore the neural code of such thalamic bursts. In order to assess whether the burst code is generic or whether it depends on the detailed properties of each bursting neuron, we analyzed two neuron models incorporating different levels of biological detail. One of the models contained no information of the biophysical processes entailed in spike generation, and described neuron activity at a phenomenological level. The second model represented the evolution of the individual ionic conductances involved in spiking and bursting, and required a large number of parameters. We analyzed the models' input selectivity using reverse correlation methods and information theory. We found that n-spike bursts from both models transmit information by modulating their spike count in response to changes to instantaneous input features, such as slope, phase, amplitude, etc. The stimulus feature that is most efficiently encoded by bursts, however, need not coincide with one of such classical features. We therefore searched for the optimal feature among all those that could be expressed as a linear transformation of the time-dependent input current. We found that bursting neurons transmitted 6 times more information about such more general features. The relevant events in the stimulus were located in a time window spanning ~100 ms before and ~20 ms after burst onset. Most importantly, the neural code employed by the simple and the biologically realistic models was largely the same, implying that the simple thalamic neuron model contains the essential ingredients that account for the computational properties of the thalamic burst code. Thus, our results suggest the n-spike burst code is a general property of thalamic neurons.

  3. 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.

  4. Stimulus-dependent effects on tactile spatial acuity

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    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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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…

  11. Prior and present evidence: how prior experience interacts with present information in a perceptual decision making task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhsin Karim

    Full Text Available Vibrotactile discrimination tasks have been used to examine decision making processes in the presence of perceptual uncertainty, induced by barely discernible frequency differences between paired stimuli or by the presence of embedded noise. One lesser known property of such tasks is that decisions made on a single trial may be biased by information from prior trials. An example is the time-order effect whereby the presentation order of paired stimuli may introduce differences in accuracy. Subjects perform better when the first stimulus lies between the second stimulus and the global mean of all stimuli on the judged dimension ("preferred" time-orders compared to the alternative presentation order ("nonpreferred" time-orders. This has been conceptualised as a "drift" of the first stimulus representation towards the global mean of the stimulus-set (an internal standard. We describe the influence of prior information in relation to the more traditionally studied factors of interest in a classic discrimination task.Sixty subjects performed a vibrotactile discrimination task with different levels of uncertainty parametrically induced by increasing task difficulty, aperiodic stimulus noise, and changing the task instructions whilst maintaining identical stimulus properties (the "context".The time-order effect had a greater influence on task performance than two of the explicit factors-task difficulty and noise-but not context. The influence of prior information increased with the distance of the first stimulus from the global mean, suggesting that the "drift" velocity of the first stimulus towards the global mean representation was greater for these trials.Awareness of the time-order effect and prior information in general is essential when studying perceptual decision making tasks. Implicit mechanisms may have a greater influence than the explicit factors under study. It also affords valuable insights into basic mechanisms of information

  12. Reliability in content analysis: The case of semantic feature norms classification.

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    Bolognesi, Marianna; Pilgram, Roosmaryn; van den Heerik, Romy

    2017-12-01

    Semantic feature norms (e.g., STIMULUS: car → RESPONSE: ) are commonly used in cognitive psychology to look into salient aspects of given concepts. Semantic features are typically collected in experimental settings and then manually annotated by the researchers into feature types (e.g., perceptual features, taxonomic features, etc.) by means of content analyses-that is, by using taxonomies of feature types and having independent coders perform the annotation task. However, the ways in which such content analyses are typically performed and reported are not consistent across the literature. This constitutes a serious methodological problem that might undermine the theoretical claims based on such annotations. In this study, we first offer a review of some of the released datasets of annotated semantic feature norms and the related taxonomies used for content analysis. We then provide theoretical and methodological insights in relation to the content analysis methodology. Finally, we apply content analysis to a new dataset of semantic features and show how the method should be applied in order to deliver reliable annotations and replicable coding schemes. We tackle the following issues: (1) taxonomy structure, (2) the description of categories, (3) coder training, and (4) sustainability of the coding scheme-that is, comparison of the annotations provided by trained versus novice coders. The outcomes of the project are threefold: We provide methodological guidelines for semantic feature classification; we provide a revised and adapted taxonomy that can (arguably) be applied to both concrete and abstract concepts; and we provide a dataset of annotated semantic feature norms.

  13. Ventromedial Frontal Cortex Is Critical for Guiding Attention to Reward-Predictive Visual Features in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaidya, Avinash R; Fellows, Lesley K

    2015-09-16

    Adaptively interacting with our environment requires extracting information that will allow us to successfully predict reward. This can be a challenge, particularly when there are many candidate cues, and when rewards are probabilistic. Recent work has demonstrated that visual attention is allocated to stimulus features that have been associated with reward on previous trials. The ventromedial frontal lobe (VMF) has been implicated in learning in dynamic environments of this kind, but the mechanism by which this region influences this process is not clear. Here, we hypothesized that the VMF plays a critical role in guiding attention to reward-predictive stimulus features based on feedback. We tested the effects of VMF damage in human subjects on a visual search task in which subjects were primed to attend to task-irrelevant colors associated with different levels of reward, incidental to the search task. Consistent with previous work, we found that distractors had a greater influence on reaction time when they appeared in colors associated with high reward in the previous trial compared with colors associated with low reward in healthy control subjects and patients with prefrontal damage sparing the VMF. However, this reward modulation of attentional priming was absent in patients with VMF damage. Thus, an intact VMF is necessary for directing attention based on experience with cue-reward associations. We suggest that this region plays a role in selecting reward-predictive cues to facilitate future learning. There has been a swell of interest recently in the ventromedial frontal cortex (VMF), a brain region critical to associative learning. However, the underlying mechanism by which this region guides learning is not well understood. Here, we tested the effects of damage to this region in humans on a task in which rewards were linked incidentally to visual features, resulting in trial-by-trial attentional priming. Controls and subjects with prefrontal damage

  14. How Does Awareness Modulate Goal-Directed and Stimulus-Driven Shifts of Attention Triggered by Value Learning?

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    Alexia Bourgeois

    Full Text Available In order to behave adaptively, attention can be directed in space either voluntarily (i.e., endogenously according to strategic goals, or involuntarily (i.e., exogenously through reflexive capture by salient or novel events. The emotional or motivational value of stimuli can also strongly influence attentional orienting. However, little is known about how reward-related effects compete or interact with endogenous and exogenous attention mechanisms, particularly outside of awareness. Here we developed a visual search paradigm to study subliminal value-based attentional orienting. We systematically manipulated goal-directed or stimulus-driven attentional orienting and examined whether an irrelevant, but previously rewarded stimulus could compete with both types of spatial attention during search. Critically, reward was learned without conscious awareness in a preceding phase where one among several visual symbols was consistently paired with a subliminal monetary reinforcement cue. Our results demonstrated that symbols previously associated with a monetary reward received higher attentional priority in the subsequent visual search task, even though these stimuli and reward were no longer task-relevant, and despite reward being unconsciously acquired. Thus, motivational processes operating independent of conscious awareness may provide powerful influences on mechanisms of attentional selection, which could mitigate both stimulus-driven and goal-directed shifts of attention.

  15. How Does Awareness Modulate Goal-Directed and Stimulus-Driven Shifts of Attention Triggered by Value Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeois, Alexia; Neveu, Rémi; Vuilleumier, Patrik

    2016-01-01

    In order to behave adaptively, attention can be directed in space either voluntarily (i.e., endogenously) according to strategic goals, or involuntarily (i.e., exogenously) through reflexive capture by salient or novel events. The emotional or motivational value of stimuli can also strongly influence attentional orienting. However, little is known about how reward-related effects compete or interact with endogenous and exogenous attention mechanisms, particularly outside of awareness. Here we developed a visual search paradigm to study subliminal value-based attentional orienting. We systematically manipulated goal-directed or stimulus-driven attentional orienting and examined whether an irrelevant, but previously rewarded stimulus could compete with both types of spatial attention during search. Critically, reward was learned without conscious awareness in a preceding phase where one among several visual symbols was consistently paired with a subliminal monetary reinforcement cue. Our results demonstrated that symbols previously associated with a monetary reward received higher attentional priority in the subsequent visual search task, even though these stimuli and reward were no longer task-relevant, and despite reward being unconsciously acquired. Thus, motivational processes operating independent of conscious awareness may provide powerful influences on mechanisms of attentional selection, which could mitigate both stimulus-driven and goal-directed shifts of attention.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Did you hear that? The role of stimulus similarity and uncertainty in auditory change deafness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly eDickerson

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Change deafness, the auditory analog to change blindness, occurs when salient and behaviorally relevant changes to sound sources are missed. Missing significant changes in the environment can have serious consequences, however, this effect, has remained little more than a lab phenomenon and a party trick. It is only recently that researchers have begun to explore the nature of these profound errors in change perception. Despite a wealth of examples of the change blindness phenomenon, work on change deafness remains fairly limited. The purpose of the current paper is to review the state of the literature on change deafness and propose an explanation of change deafness that relies on factors related to stimulus information rather than attentional or memory limits. To achieve this, work on across several auditory research domains, including environmental sound classification, informational masking and change deafness are synthesized to present a unified perspective on the perception of change errors in complex, dynamic sound environments. We hope to extend previous research by describing how it may be possible to predict specific patters of change perception errors based on varying degrees of similarity in stimulus features and uncertainty about which stimuli and features are important for a given perceptual decision.

  1. Feature-specific encoding flexibility in visual working memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aki Kondo

    Full Text Available The current study examined selective encoding in visual working memory by systematically investigating interference from task-irrelevant features. The stimuli were objects defined by three features (color, shape, and location, and during a delay period, any of the features could switch between two objects. Additionally, single- and whole-probe trials were randomized within experimental blocks to investigate effects of memory retrieval. A series of relevant-feature switch detection tasks, where one feature was task-irrelevant, showed that interference from the task-irrelevant feature was only observed in the color-shape task, suggesting that color and shape information could be successfully filtered out, but location information could not, even when location was a task-irrelevant feature. Therefore, although location information is added to object representations independent of task demands in a relatively automatic manner, other features (e.g., color, shape can be flexibly added to object representations.

  2. Feature-specific encoding flexibility in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondo, Aki; Saiki, Jun

    2012-01-01

    The current study examined selective encoding in visual working memory by systematically investigating interference from task-irrelevant features. The stimuli were objects defined by three features (color, shape, and location), and during a delay period, any of the features could switch between two objects. Additionally, single- and whole-probe trials were randomized within experimental blocks to investigate effects of memory retrieval. A series of relevant-feature switch detection tasks, where one feature was task-irrelevant, showed that interference from the task-irrelevant feature was only observed in the color-shape task, suggesting that color and shape information could be successfully filtered out, but location information could not, even when location was a task-irrelevant feature. Therefore, although location information is added to object representations independent of task demands in a relatively automatic manner, other features (e.g., color, shape) can be flexibly added to object representations.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  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. Feature Extraction

    CERN Document Server

    CERN. Geneva

    2015-01-01

    Feature selection and reduction are key to robust multivariate analyses. In this talk I will focus on pros and cons of various variable selection methods and focus on those that are most relevant in the context of HEP.

  9. Solar Features

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Collection includes a variety of solar feature datasets contributed by a number of national and private solar observatories located worldwide.

  10. Site Features

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — This dataset consists of various site features from multiple Superfund sites in U.S. EPA Region 8. These data were acquired from multiple sources at different times...

  11. Motor consciousness during intention-based and stimulus-based actions: modulating attention resources through Mindfulness meditation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvonne Nathalie Delevoye-Turrell

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction meditation (MBSR may offer optimal performance through heightened attention for increased body consciousness. To test this hypothesis, MBSR effects were assessed on the simple task of lifting an object. A dual task paradigm was included to assess the opposite effect of a limited amount of attention on motor consciousness. In a stimulus-based condition, the subjects’ task was to lift an object that was hefted with weights. In an intentional-based condition, subjects were required to lift a light object while imagining that the object was virtually heavier and thus, adjust their grip voluntarily. The degree of motor consciousness was evaluated by calculating correlation factors for each participant between the grip force level used during the lift trial (lift the object and that used during its associated reproduce trial (without lifting, indicate the force you think you used in the previous trial. Under dual task condition, motor consciousness decreased for intention- and stimulus-based actions, revealing the importance of top-down attention for building the motor representation that guides action planning. For MBSR-experts, heightened attention provided stronger levels of motor consciousness; this was true for both intention and stimulus-based actions. For controls, heightened attention decreased the capacity to reproduce force levels, suggesting that voluntary top-down attention interfered with the automatic bottom-up emergence of body sensations.Our results provide strong arguments for involvement of two types of attention for the emergence of motor consciousness. Bottom-up attention would serve as an amplifier of motor-sensory afferences; Top down attention would help transfer the motor-sensory content from a pre-conscious to a conscious state of processing. MBSR would be a specific state for which both types of attention are optimally combined to provide experts with total experiences of their body in

  12. The influence of psychological resilience on the relation between automatic stimulus evaluation and attentional breadth for surprised faces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grol, Maud; De Raedt, Rudi

    2015-01-01

    The broaden-and-build theory relates positive emotions to resilience and cognitive broadening. The theory proposes that the broadening effects underly the relation between positive emotions and resilience, suggesting that resilient people can benefit more from positive emotions at the level of cognitive functioning. Research has investigated the influence of positive emotions on attentional broadening, but the stimulus in the target of attention may also influence attentional breadth, depending on affective stimulus evaluation. Surprised faces are particularly interesting as they are valence ambiguous, therefore, we investigated the relation between affective evaluation--using an affective priming task--and attentional breadth for surprised faces, and how this relation is influenced by resilience. Results show that more positive evaluations are related to more attentional broadening at high levels of resilience, while this relation is reversed at low levels. This indicates that resilient individuals can benefit more from attending to positively evaluated stimuli at the level of attentional broadening.

  13. The ERP Effects of Combined Cognitive Training on Intention-based and Stimulus-based Actions in Older Chinese Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ya-Nan Niu

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Age-related decreases in action are caused by neuromuscular weakness and cognitive decline. Although physical interventions have been reported to have beneficial effects on cognitive function in older adults, whether cognitive training improves action-related function remains unclear. In this study, we investigated the effects of combined cognitive training on intention-based and stimulus-based actions in older adults using event-related potentials (ERPs. A total of 26 healthy older adults (16 in the training group and 10 in the control group participated in the study. The training group received 16 sessions of cognitive training, including 8 sessions of executive function training and 8 sessions of memory strategy training. Before and after training, both groups of participants underwent cognitive assessments and ERP recordings during both the acquisition and test phases with a motor cognitive paradigm. During the acquisition phase, subjects were asked to press one of two keys, either using a self-selected (intention-based method or based on the preceding stimulus (stimulus-based. During the test phase, subjects were asked to respond to the pre-cues with either congruent or incongruent tasks. Using ERP indices—including readiness potential, P3 and contingent negative variation to identify motor preparation, stimulus processing and interference effect, respectively—we revealed the effects of training on both intention-based and stimulus-based actions. The correlations were also computed between the improved cognitive performance and the ERP amplitudes. It was shown that the improved executive function might extend substantial benefits to both actions, whereas associative memory may be specifically related to the bidirectional action-effect association of intention-based action, although the training effect of memory was absent during the insufficient training hours. In sum, the present study provided empirical evidence demonstrating that

  14. The effect of distance on moral engagement: Event related potentials and alpha power are sensitive to perspective in a virtual shooting task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirsten ePetras

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In a shooting video game we investigated whether increased distance reduces moral conflict. We measured and analysed the event related potential (ERP, including the N2 component, which has previously been linked to cognitive conflict from competing decision tendencies. In a modified go/nogo task designed to trigger moral conflict participants had to shoot suddenly appearing human like avatars in a virtual reality scene. The scene was seen either from an ego perspective with targets appearing directly in front of the participant or from a bird’s view, where targets were seen from above and more distant. To control for low level visual features, we conducted a visually identical control experiment, where the instruction to shoot was replaced by an instruction to detect. ERP waveforms showed differences between the two tasks as early as in the N1 time-range, with higher N1 amplitudes for the close perspective in the shoot task. Additionally, we found that pre-stimulus alpha power was significantly decreased in the ego, compared to the bird's view only for the shoot but not for the detect task. In the N2 time window, we observed main amplitude effects for response (nogo > go and distance (ego > bird perspective but no interaction with task type (shoot vs detect. We argue that the pre-stimulus and N1 effects can be explained by reduced attention and arousal in the distance condition when people are instructed to shoot. The lack of interaction in the N2 across tasks suggests that at that time point, the moral conflict is already resolved and response execution dominates. We discuss potential implications for real life shooting situations, especially considering recent developments in drone shootings which are per definition of a distant view.

  15. The Effect of Distance on Moral Engagement: Event Related Potentials and Alpha Power are Sensitive to Perspective in a Virtual Shooting Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petras, Kirsten; Ten Oever, Sanne; Jansma, Bernadette M

    2015-01-01

    In a shooting video game we investigated whether increased distance reduces moral conflict. We measured and analyzed the event related potential (ERP), including the N2 component, which has previously been linked to cognitive conflict from competing decision tendencies. In a modified Go/No-go task designed to trigger moral conflict participants had to shoot suddenly appearing human like avatars in a virtual reality scene. The scene was seen either from an ego perspective with targets appearing directly in front of the participant or from a bird's view, where targets were seen from above and more distant. To control for low level visual features, we added a visually identical control condition, where the instruction to "shoot" was replaced by an instruction to "detect." ERP waveforms showed differences between the two tasks as early as in the N1 time-range, with higher N1 amplitudes for the close perspective in the "shoot" task. Additionally, we found that pre-stimulus alpha power was significantly decreased in the ego, compared to the bird's view only for the "shoot" but not for the "detect" task. In the N2 time window, we observed main amplitude effects for response (No-go > Go) and distance (ego > bird perspective) but no interaction with task type (shoot vs. detect). We argue that the pre-stimulus and N1 effects can be explained by reduced attention and arousal in the distance condition when people are instructed to "shoot." These results indicate a reduced moral engagement for increased distance. The lack of interaction in the N2 across tasks suggests that at that time point response execution dominates. We discuss potential implications for real life shooting situations, especially considering recent developments in drone shootings which are per definition of a distant view.

  16. Spatiotemporal dynamics of cortical representations during and after stimulus presentation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nieuwenhuijzen, M.E. van de; Borne, E.W.P. van den; Jensen, O.; Gerven, M.A.J. van

    2016-01-01

    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

  17. Promoting Response Variability and Stimulus Generalization in Martial Arts Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harding, Jay W.; Wacker, David P.; Berg, Wendy K.; Rick, Gary; Lee, John F.

    2004-01-01

    The effects of reinforcement and extinction on response variability and stimulus generalization in the punching and kicking techniques of 2 martial arts students were evaluated across drill and sparring conditions. During both conditions, the students were asked to demonstrate different techniques in response to an instructor's punching attack.…

  18. Imitation in Infancy: The Wealth of the Stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, Elizabeth; Heyes, Cecilia

    2011-01-01

    Imitation requires the imitator to solve the correspondence problem--to translate visual information from modelled action into matching motor output. It has been widely accepted for some 30 years that the correspondence problem is solved by a specialized, innate cognitive mechanism. This is the conclusion of a poverty of the stimulus argument,…

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. Anticipating Stimulus Money for Campus Projects, Colleges Get "Shovel Ready"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Scott

    2009-01-01

    Help for colleges may be on the way in the $825-billion stimulus package being pressed by Congressional leaders. The bill that House Democrats introduced this month includes $7-billion for higher-education modernization, renovation, and repair that could kick-start projects like upgrading heating and cooling systems, fixing roofs, and doing…

  3. Teaching Brain-Behavior Relations Economically with Stimulus Equivalence Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fienup, Daniel M.; Covey, Daniel P.; Critchfield, Thomas S.

    2010-01-01

    Instructional interventions based on stimulus equivalence provide learners with the opportunity to acquire skills that are not directly taught, thereby improving the efficiency of instructional efforts. The present report describes a study in which equivalence-based instruction was used to teach college students facts regarding brain anatomy and…

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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…

  7. Continuous Flash Suppression: Stimulus Fractionation rather than Integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moors, Pieter; Hesselmann, Guido; Wagemans, Johan; van Ee, Raymond

    2017-10-01

    Recent studies using continuous flash suppression suggest that invisible stimuli are processed as integrated, semantic entities. We challenge the viability of this account, given recent findings on the neural basis of interocular suppression and replication failures of high-profile CFS studies. We conclude that CFS reveals stimulus fractionation in visual cortex. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Stimulus Characteristics Affect Humor Processing in Individuals with Asperger Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samson, Andrea C.; Hegenloh, Michael

    2010-01-01

    The present paper aims to investigate whether individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS) show global humor processing deficits or whether humor comprehension and appreciation depends on stimulus characteristics. Non-verbal visual puns, semantic and Theory of Mind cartoons were rated on comprehension, funniness and the punchlines were explained. AS…

  9. Stress Induces a Shift Towards Striatum-Dependent Stimulus-Response Learning via the Mineralocorticoid Receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, Susanne; Klumpers, Floris; Schröder, Tobias Navarro; Oplaat, Krista T; Krugers, Harm J; Oitzl, Melly S; Joëls, Marian; Doeller, Christian F; Fernández, Guillén

    2017-05-01

    Stress is assumed to cause a shift from flexible 'cognitive' memory to more rigid 'habit' memory. In the spatial memory domain, stress impairs place learning depending on the hippocampus whereas stimulus-response learning based on the striatum appears to be improved. While the neural basis of this shift is still unclear, previous evidence in rodents points towards cortisol interacting with the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) to affect amygdala functioning. The amygdala is in turn assumed to orchestrate the stress-induced shift in memory processing. However, an integrative study testing these mechanisms in humans is lacking. Therefore, we combined functional neuroimaging of a spatial memory task, stress-induction, and administration of an MR-antagonist in a full-factorial, randomized, placebo-controlled between-subjects design in 101 healthy males. We demonstrate that stress-induced increases in cortisol lead to enhanced stimulus-response learning, accompanied by increased amygdala activity and connectivity to the striatum. Importantly, this shift was prevented by an acute administration of the MR-antagonist spironolactone. Our findings support a model in which the MR and the amygdala play an important role in the stress-induced shift towards habit memory systems, revealing a fundamental mechanism of adaptively allocating neural resources that may have implications for stress-related mental disorders.

  10. Fear conditioning following a unilateral anterior temporal lobectomy: reduced autonomic responding and stimulus contingency knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coppens, Evelien; van Paesschen, Wim; Vandenbulcke, Mathieu; Vansteenwegen, Debora

    2010-03-01

    Animal research demonstrated that during fear conditioning the amygdala plays a central role in forming an association between the conditioned stimulus (CS) and the unconditioned stimulus (US). Lesion studies conducted in patients who underwent a unilateral anterior temporal lobe resection, however; yielded contradictory findings. To date, it remains unclear whether amygdala damage only affects fear-conditioned startle responding or impairs both the latter and fear-conditioned skin conductance responding (SCR). Moreover inconsistency exists regarding the preservation of contingency knowledge in amygdala-damaged patients. In the current study, a differential fear conditioning task was presented to a unilaterally amygdala-damaged patient group and a healthy control group, recording fear-potentiated startle responses along with SCRs. Retrospectively, the valence of the CSs and contingency awareness was assessed. Unlike the control group, unilaterally amygdala-damaged patients showed neither in their SCRs nor in their valence ratings an effect of fear conditioning. The startle data, however, yielded in none of the two test groups fear-conditioned responding. Finally, considerably fewer patients (37.5%) than controls (95%) acquired correct memory of the presented contingency. Based on these findings we concluded that the fear conditioning impairment in amygdala-damaged patients was not restricted to SCRs, but also affected valence ratings and memory of the presented contingency. A broader theory of the amygdala as relevance detector is proposed in order to account for the diverse neurological findings obtained so far.

  11. Encoding instructions and stimulus presentation in local environmental context-dependent memory studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markopoulos, G; Rutherford, A; Cairns, C; Green, J

    2010-08-01

    Murnane and Phelps (1993) recommend word pair presentations in local environmental context (EC) studies to prevent associations being formed between successively presented items and their ECs and a consequent reduction in the EC effect. Two experiments were conducted to assess the veracity of this assumption. In Experiment 1, participants memorised single words or word pairs, or categorised them as natural or man made. Their free recall protocols were examined to assess any associations established between successively presented items. Fewest associations were observed when the item-specific encoding task (i.e., natural or man made categorisation of word referents) was applied to single words. These findings were examined further in Experiment 2, where the influence of encoding instructions and stimulus presentation on local EC dependent recognition memory was examined. Consistent with recognition dual-process signal detection model predictions and findings (e.g., Macken, 2002; Parks & Yonelinas, 2008), recollection sensitivity, but not familiarity sensitivity, was found to be local EC dependent. However, local EC dependent recognition was observed only after item-specific encoding instructions, irrespective of stimulus presentation. These findings and the existing literature suggest that the use of single word presentations and item-specific encoding enhances local EC dependent recognition.

  12. Effects of rhythmic stimulus presentation on oscillatory brain activity: the physiology of cueing in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    te Woerd, Erik S; Oostenveld, Robert; Bloem, Bastiaan R; de Lange, Floris P; Praamstra, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The basal ganglia play an important role in beat perception and patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) are impaired in perception of beat-based rhythms. Rhythmic cues are nonetheless beneficial in gait rehabilitation, raising the question how rhythm improves movement in PD. We addressed this question with magnetoencephalography recordings during a choice response task with rhythmic and non-rhythmic modes of stimulus presentation. Analyses focused on (i) entrainment of slow oscillations, (ii) the depth of beta power modulation, and (iii) whether a gain in modulation depth of beta power, due to rhythmicity, is of predictive or reactive nature. The results show weaker phase synchronisation of slow oscillations and a relative shift from predictive to reactive movement-related beta suppression in PD. Nonetheless, rhythmic stimulus presentation increased beta modulation depth to the same extent in patients and controls. Critically, this gain selectively increased the predictive and not reactive movement-related beta power suppression. Operation of a predictive mechanism, induced by rhythmic stimulation, was corroborated by a sensory gating effect in the sensorimotor cortex. The predictive mode of cue utilisation points to facilitation of basal ganglia-premotor interactions, contrasting with the popular view that rhythmic stimulation confers a special advantage in PD, based on recruitment of alternative pathways.

  13. Age-Related Declines in Early Sensory Memory: Identification of Rapid Auditory and Visual Stimulus Sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogerty, Daniel; Humes, Larry E; Busey, Thomas A

    2016-01-01

    Age-related temporal-processing declines of rapidly presented sequences may involve contributions of sensory memory. This study investigated recall for rapidly presented auditory (vowel) and visual (letter) sequences presented at six different stimulus onset asynchronies (SOA) that spanned threshold SOAs for sequence identification. Younger, middle-aged, and older adults participated in all tasks. Results were investigated at both equivalent performance levels (i.e., SOA threshold) and at identical physical stimulus values (i.e., SOAs). For four-item sequences, results demonstrated best performance for the first and last items in the auditory sequences, but only the first item for visual sequences. For two-item sequences, adults identified the second vowel or letter significantly better than the first. Overall, when temporal-order performance was equated for each individual by testing at SOA thresholds, recall accuracy for each position across the age groups was highly similar. These results suggest that modality-specific processing declines of older adults primarily determine temporal-order performance for rapid sequences. However, there is some evidence for a second amodal processing decline in older adults related to early sensory memory for final items in a sequence. This selective deficit was observed particularly for longer sequence lengths and was not accounted for by temporal masking.

  14. Amygdala Contributions to Stimulus-Reward Encoding in the Macaque Medial and Orbital Frontal Cortex during Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudebeck, Peter H; Ripple, Joshua A; Mitz, Andrew R; Averbeck, Bruno B; Murray, Elisabeth A

    2017-02-22

    Orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), medial frontal cortex (MFC), and amygdala mediate stimulus-reward learning, but the mechanisms through which they interact are unclear. Here, we investigated how neurons in macaque OFC and MFC signaled rewards and the stimuli that predicted them during learning with and without amygdala input. Macaques performed a task that required them to evaluate two stimuli and then choose one to receive the reward associated with that option. Four main findings emerged. First, amygdala lesions slowed the acquisition and use of stimulus-reward associations. Further analyses indicated that this impairment was due, at least in part, to ineffective use of negative feedback to guide subsequent decisions. Second, the activity of neurons in OFC and MFC rapidly evolved to encode the amount of reward associated with each stimulus. Third, amygdalectomy reduced encoding of stimulus-reward associations during the evaluation of different stimuli. Reward encoding of anticipated and received reward after choices were made was not altered. Fourth, amygdala lesions led to an increase in the proportion of neurons in MFC, but not OFC, that encoded the instrumental response that monkeys made on each trial. These correlated changes in behavior and neural activity after amygdala lesions strongly suggest that the amygdala contributes to the ability to learn stimulus-reward associations rapidly by shaping encoding within OFC and MFC. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Altered functional interactions among orbital frontal cortex (OFC), medial frontal cortex (MFC), and amygdala are thought to underlie several psychiatric conditions, many related to reward learning. Here, we investigated the causal contribution of the amygdala to the development of neuronal activity in macaque OFC and MFC related to rewards and the stimuli that predict them during learning. Without amygdala inputs, neurons in both OFC and MFC showed decreased encoding of stimulus-reward associations. MFC also showed

  15. Brain wave concomitants of cross-cultural differences in scores on simple cognitive tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sonke, C.J.; Boxtel, van G.J.M.; Griesel, R.D.; Poortinga, Y.H.

    2008-01-01

    Interpretations of cross-cultural differences in performance on cognitive tasks tend to rely on broad concepts, such as general intelligence or cultural modes of thinking. In this study, the authors examine two proximate parameters, stimulus complexity and task exposure, using reaction time (RT) and

  16. Selecting a Response in Task Switching: Testing a Model of Compound Cue Retrieval

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Darryl W.; Logan, Gordon D.

    2009-01-01

    How can a task-appropriate response be selected for an ambiguous target stimulus in task-switching situations? One answer is to use compound cue retrieval, whereby stimuli serve as joint retrieval cues to select a response from long-term memory. In the present study, the authors tested how well a model of compound cue retrieval could account for a…

  17. Central Cross-Talk in Task Switching : Evidence from Manipulating Input-Output Modality Compatibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephan, Denise Nadine; Koch, Iring

    2010-01-01

    Two experiments examined the role of compatibility of input and output (I-O) modality mappings in task switching. We define I-O modality compatibility in terms of similarity of stimulus modality and modality of response-related sensory consequences. Experiment 1 included switching between 2 compatible tasks (auditory-vocal vs. visual-manual) and…

  18. Transfer of newly acquired stimulus valence between identities in dissociative identity disorder (DID).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huntjens, Rafaële J C; Peters, Madelon L; Postma, Albert; Woertman, Liesbeth; Effting, Marieke; van der Hart, Onno

    2005-02-01

    Patients with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) frequently report episodes of interidentity amnesia, that is amnesia for events experienced by other identities. The goal of the present experiment was to test the implicit transfer of trauma-related information between identities in DID. We hypothesized that whereas declarative information may transfer from one identity to another, the emotional connotation of the memory may be dissociated, especially in the case of negative, trauma-related emotional valence. An evaluative conditioning procedure was combined with an affective priming procedure, both performed by different identities. In the evaluative conditioning procedure, previously neutral stimuli come to refer to a negative or positive connotation. The affective priming procedure was used to test the transfer of this acquired valence to an identity reporting interidentity amnesia. Results indicated activation of stimulus valence in the affective priming task, that is transfer of emotional material between identities.

  19. 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

  20. More insight into the interplay of response selection and visual attention in dual-tasks: masked visual search and response selection are performed in parallel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimer, Christina B; Schubert, Torsten

    2017-09-15

    Both response selection and visual attention are limited in capacity. According to the central bottleneck model, the response selection processes of two tasks in a dual-task situation are performed sequentially. In conjunction search, visual attention is required to select the items and to bind their features (e.g., color and form), which results in a serial search process. Search time increases as items are added to the search display (i.e., set size effect). When the search display is masked, visual attention deployment is restricted to a brief period of time and target detection decreases as a function of set size. Here, we investigated whether response selection and visual attention (i.e., feature binding) rely on a common or on distinct capacity limitations. In four dual-task experiments, participants completed an auditory Task 1 and a conjunction search Task 2 that were presented with an experimentally modulated temporal interval between them (Stimulus Onset Asynchrony, SOA). In Experiment 1, Task 1 was a two-choice discrimination task and the conjunction search display was not masked. In Experiment 2, the response selection difficulty in Task 1 was increased to a four-choice discrimination and the search task was the same as in Experiment 1. We applied the locus-of-slack method in both experiments to analyze conjunction search time, that is, we compared the set size effects across SOAs. Similar set size effects across SOAs (i.e., additive effects of SOA and set size) would indicate sequential processing of response selection and visual attention. However, a significantly smaller set size effect at short SOA compared to long SOA (i.e., underadditive interaction of SOA and set size) would indicate parallel processing of response selection and visual attention. In both experiments, we found underadditive interactions of SOA and set size. In Experiments 3 and 4, the conjunction search display in Task 2 was masked. Task 1 was the same as in Experiments 1 and 2

  1. The spatially asymmetric cost of memory load on visual perception: transient stimulus-centered neglect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gozli, Davood G; Wilson, Kristin E; Ferber, Susanne

    2014-04-01

    Recent evidence suggests that visual working memory (VWM) load reduces performance accuracy on a concurrent visual recognition task, particularly for objects presented in the left hemifield. It has also been shown that high VWM load causes suppression of activity in the right temporoparietal junction (TPJ). Given the resemblance of VWM load effects to symptoms of unilateral neglect (i.e., impaired perception on the left side and lesion to the right TPJ), we investigated whether VWM load effects are restricted to the left side of space or extend to object-centered reference frames. In other words, akin to object-centered neglect, can high VWM load cause a perceptual cost in attending to the left side of the stimulus? We addressed this question using an object recognition task (Experiment 1) and a visual search task (Experiment 2) showing that this transient left-neglect can indeed be modulated by an object-centered frame of reference. These findings suggest that load-induced impairments of visual attention are spatially asymmetric and can emerge within multiple spatial reference frames. Therefore, the attentional consequences of high VWM load on conscious perception may serve as a useful model of unilateral perceptual neglect.

  2. Avoiding stimulus confounds in Implicit Association Tests by using the concepts as stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steffens, Melanie C; Kirschbaum, Michael; Glados, Petra

    2008-06-01

    Implicit Association Tests (IATs) are supposed to measure associations between concepts. In order to achieve that aim, participants are required to assign individual stimuli to those concepts under time pressure in two different tasks. Previous research has shown that not only the associations of the concepts with each other, but also the stimuli's cross-category associations influence the observed reaction time difference between these tasks (i.e. the IAT effect). Little is known about adequate stimulus selection. In this article, we introduce a variant of the IAT, the Concept Association Task (CAT) in which the concepts themselves or synonyms of them are used as stimuli. Three experiments on Germans' attitudes towards foreigners yielded evidence for the convergent validity of the CAT: (1) it correlated well with other IAT versions; (2) it correlated higher with spontaneous attitude-related judgements than other IAT versions; and (3) it correlated with response-window priming, another implicit measure based on reaction times. Furthermore, we showed that the CAT yielded reasonable findings when other IAT versions appear to yield distorted ones.

  3. Neuroimaging investigations of dorsal stream processing and effects of stimulus synchrony in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanfratello, Lori; Aine, Cheryl; Stephen, Julia

    2018-05-25

    Impairments in auditory and visual processing are common in schizophrenia (SP). In the unisensory realm visual deficits are primarily noted for the dorsal visual stream. In addition, insensitivity to timing offsets between stimuli are widely reported for SP. The aim of the present study was to test at the physiological level differences in dorsal/ventral stream visual processing and timing sensitivity between SP and healthy controls (HC) using MEG and a simple auditory/visual task utilizing a variety of multisensory conditions. The paradigm included all combinations of synchronous/asynchronous and central/peripheral stimuli, yielding 4 task conditions. Both HC and SP groups showed activation in parietal areas (dorsal visual stream) during all multisensory conditions, with parietal areas showing decreased activation for SP relative to HC, and a significantly delayed peak of activation for SP in intraparietal sulcus (IPS). We also observed a differential effect of stimulus synchrony on HC and SP parietal response. Furthermore, a (negative) correlation was found between SP positive symptoms and activity in IPS. Taken together, our results provide evidence of impairment of the dorsal visual stream in SP during a multisensory task, along with an altered response to timing offsets between presented multisensory stimuli. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Neural Correlates of Changes in a Visual Search Task due to Cognitive Training in Seniors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nele Wild-Wall

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to elucidate the underlying neural sources of near transfer after a multidomain cognitive training in older participants in a visual search task. Participants were randomly assigned to a social control, a no-contact control and a training group, receiving a 4-month paper-pencil and PC-based trainer guided cognitive intervention. All participants were tested in a before and after session with a conjunction visual search task. Performance and event-related potentials (ERPs suggest that the cognitive training improved feature processing of the stimuli which was expressed in an increased rate of target detection compared to the control groups. This was paralleled by enhanced amplitudes of the frontal P2 in the ERP and by higher activation in lingual and parahippocampal brain areas which are discussed to support visual feature processing. Enhanced N1 and N2 potentials in the ERP for nontarget stimuli after cognitive training additionally suggest improved attention and subsequent processing of arrays which were not immediately recognized as targets. Possible test repetition effects were confined to processes of stimulus categorisation as suggested by the P3b potential. The results show neurocognitive plasticity in aging after a broad cognitive training and allow pinpointing the functional loci of effects induced by cognitive training.

  5. Overt attention in natural scenes: objects dominate features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoll, Josef; Thrun, Michael; Nuthmann, Antje; Einhäuser, Wolfgang

    2015-02-01

    Whether overt attention in natural scenes is guided by object content or by low-level stimulus features has become a matter of intense debate. Experimental evidence seemed to indicate that once object locations in a scene are known, salience models provide little extra explanatory power. This approach has recently been criticized for using inadequate models of early salience; and indeed, state-of-the-art salience models outperform trivial object-based models that assume a uniform distribution of fixations on objects. Here we propose to use object-based models that take a preferred viewing location (PVL) close to the centre of objects into account. In experiment 1, we demonstrate that, when including this comparably subtle modification, object-based models again are at par with state-of-the-art salience models in predicting fixations in natural scenes. One possible interpretation of these results is that objects rather than early salience dominate attentional guidance. In this view, early-salience models predict fixations through the correlation of their features with object locations. To test this hypothesis directly, in two additional experiments we reduced low-level salience in image areas of high object content. For these modified stimuli, the object-based model predicted fixations significantly better than early salience. This finding held in an object-naming task (experiment 2) and a free-viewing task (experiment 3). These results provide further evidence for object-based fixation selection--and by inference object-based attentional guidance--in natural scenes. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. Emergent interfaces for feature modularization

    CERN Document Server

    Ribeiro, Márcio; Brabrand, Claus

    2014-01-01

    Developers frequently introduce errors into software systems when they fail to recognise module dependencies. Using forty-three software families and Software Product Lines (SPLs), where the majority are commonly used in industrial practice, the authors reports on the feature modularization problem and provides a study of how often it may occur in practice. To solve the problem they present the concept of emergent feature modularization which aims to establish contracts between features to prevent developers from breaking other features when performing a maintenance task.

  7. Learning Transferable Features with Deep Adaptation Networks

    OpenAIRE

    Long, Mingsheng; Cao, Yue; Wang, Jianmin; Jordan, Michael I.

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies reveal that a deep neural network can learn transferable features which generalize well to novel tasks for domain adaptation. However, as deep features eventually transition from general to specific along the network, the feature transferability drops significantly in higher layers with increasing domain discrepancy. Hence, it is important to formally reduce the dataset bias and enhance the transferability in task-specific layers. In this paper, we propose a new Deep Adaptation...

  8. Multisensory perceptual learning is dependent upon task difficulty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Niear, Matthew A; Koo, Bonhwang; Wallace, Mark T

    2016-11-01

    There has been a growing interest in developing behavioral tasks to enhance temporal acuity as recent findings have demonstrated changes in temporal processing in a number of clinical conditions. Prior research has demonstrated that perceptual training can enhance temporal acuity both within and across different sensory modalities. Although certain forms of unisensory perceptual learning have been shown to be dependent upon task difficulty, this relationship has not been explored for multisensory learning. The present study sought to determine the effects of task difficulty on multisensory perceptual learning. Prior to and following a single training session, participants completed a simultaneity judgment (SJ) task, which required them to judge whether a visual stimulus (flash) and auditory stimulus (beep) presented in synchrony or at various stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) occurred synchronously or asynchronously. During the training session, participants completed the same SJ task but received feedback regarding the accuracy of their responses. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three levels of difficulty during training: easy, moderate, and hard, which were distinguished based on the SOAs used during training. We report that only the most difficult (i.e., hard) training protocol enhanced temporal acuity. We conclude that perceptual training protocols for enhancing multisensory temporal acuity may be optimized by employing audiovisual stimuli for which it is difficult to discriminate temporal synchrony from asynchrony.

  9. Nonassociative learning as gated neural integrator and differentiator in stimulus-response pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young Daniel L

    2006-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Nonassociative learning is a basic neuroadaptive behavior exhibited across animal phyla and sensory modalities but its role in brain intelligence is unclear. Current literature on habituation and sensitization, the classic "dual process" of nonassociative learning, gives highly incongruous accounts between varying experimental paradigms. Here we propose a general theory of nonassociative learning featuring four base modes: habituation/primary sensitization in primary stimulus-response pathways, and desensitization/secondary sensitization in secondary stimulus-response pathways. Primary and secondary modes of nonassociative learning are distinguished by corresponding activity-dependent recall, or nonassociative gating, of neurotransmission memory. From the perspective of brain computation, nonassociative learning is a form of integral-differential calculus whereas nonassociative gating is a form of Boolean logic operator – both dynamically transforming the stimulus-response relationship. From the perspective of sensory integration, nonassociative gating provides temporal filtering whereas nonassociative learning affords low-pass, high-pass or band-pass/band-stop frequency filtering – effectively creating an intelligent sensory firewall that screens all stimuli for attention and resultant internal model adaptation and reaction. This unified framework ties together many salient characteristics of nonassociative learning and nonassociative gating and suggests a common kernel that correlates with a wide variety of sensorimotor integration behaviors such as central resetting and self-organization of sensory inputs, fail-safe sensorimotor compensation, integral-differential and gated modulation of sensorimotor feedbacks, alarm reaction, novelty detection and selective attention, as well as a variety of mental and neurological disorders such as sensorimotor instability, attention deficit hyperactivity, sensory defensiveness, autism

  10. 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.

  11. The iso-response method: measuring neuronal stimulus integration with closed-loop experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gollisch, Tim; Herz, Andreas V. M.

    2012-01-01

    Throughout the nervous system, neurons integrate high-dimensional input streams and transform them into an output of their own. This integration of incoming signals involves filtering processes and complex non-linear operations. The shapes of these filters and non-linearities determine the computational features of single neurons and their functional roles within larger networks. A detailed characterization of signal integration is thus a central ingredient to understanding information processing in neural circuits. Conventional methods for measuring single-neuron response properties, such as reverse correlation, however, are often limited by the implicit assumption that stimulus integration occurs in a linear fashion. Here, we review a conceptual and experimental alternative that is based on exploring the space of those sensory stimuli that result in the same neural output. As demonstrated by recent results in the auditory and visual system, such iso-response stimuli can be used to identify the non-linearities relevant for stimulus integration, disentangle consecutive neural processing steps, and determine their characteristics with unprecedented precision. Automated closed-loop experiments are crucial for this advance, allowing rapid search strategies for identifying iso-response stimuli during experiments. Prime targets for the method are feed-forward neural signaling chains in sensory systems, but the method has also been successfully applied to feedback systems. Depending on the specific question, “iso-response” may refer to a predefined firing rate, single-spike probability, first-spike latency, or other output measures. Examples from different studies show that substantial progress in understanding neural dynamics and coding can be achieved once rapid online data analysis and stimulus generation, adaptive sampling, and computational modeling are tightly integrated into experiments. PMID:23267315

  12. A Decline in Response Variability Improves Neural Signal Detection during Auditory Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Trapp, Gardiner; Buran, Bradley N; Sen, Kamal; Semple, Malcolm N; Sanes, Dan H

    2016-10-26

    The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity, but a sensory neuron's response is rarely identical to successive presentations of the same stimulus. Large trial-to-trial variability would limit the central nervous system's ability to reliably detect a stimulus, presumably affecting perceptual performance. However, if response variability were to decrease while firing rate remained constant, then neural sensitivity could improve. Here, we asked whether engagement in an auditory detection task can modulate response variability, thereby increasing neural sensitivity. We recorded telemetrically from the core auditory cortex of gerbils, both while they engaged in an amplitude-modulation detection task and while they sat quietly listening to the identical stimuli. Using a signal detection theory framework, we found that neural sensitivity was improved during task performance, and this improvement was closely associated with a decrease in response variability. Moreover, units with the greatest change in response variability had absolute neural thresholds most closely aligned with simultaneously measured perceptual thresholds. Our findings suggest that the limitations imposed by response variability diminish during task performance, thereby improving the sensitivity of neural encoding and potentially leading to better perceptual sensitivity. The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity. However, trial-to-trial variability of the neural response may limit perceptual performance. If the neural response to a stimulus is quite variable, then the response on a given trial could be confused with the pattern of neural activity generated when the stimulus is absent. Therefore, a neural mechanism that served to reduce response variability would allow for better stimulus detection. By recording from the cortex of freely moving animals engaged in an auditory detection task, we found that variability

  13. Effects of stimulus type and strategy on mental rotation network:an Activation Likelihood Estimation meta-analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara eTomasino

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We could predict how an object would look like if we were to see it from different viewpoints. The brain network governing mental rotation (MR has been studied using a variety of stimuli and tasks instructions. By using activation likelihood estimation (ALE meta-analysis we tested whether different MR networks can be modulated by the type of stimulus (body vs. non body parts or by the type of tasks instructions (motor imagery-based vs. non-motor imagery-based MR instructions. Testing for the bodily and non-bodily stimulus axis revealed a bilateral sensorimotor activation for bodily-related as compared to non bodily-related stimuli and a posterior right lateralized activation for non bodily-related as compared to bodily-related stimuli. A top-down modulation of the network was exerted by the MR tasks instructions frame with a bilateral (preferentially sensorimotor left network for motor imagery- vs. non-motor imagery-based MR instructions and the latter activating a preferentially posterior right occipito-temporal-parietal network. The present quantitative meta-analysis summarizes and amends previous descriptions of the brain network related to MR and shows how it is modulated by top-down and bottom-up experimental factors.

  14. Increased cognitive control after task conflict? Investigating the N-3 effect in task switching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuch, Stefanie; Grange, James A

    2018-05-25

    Task inhibition is considered to facilitate switching to a new task and is assumed to decay slowly over time. Hence, more persisting inhibition needs to be overcome when returning to a task after one intermediary trial (ABA task sequence) than when returning after two or more intermediary trials (CBA task sequence). Schuch and Grange (J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn 41:760-767, 2015) put forward the hypothesis that there is higher task conflict in ABA than CBA sequences, leading to increased cognitive control in the subsequent trial. They provided evidence that performance is better in trials following ABA than following CBA task sequences. Here, this effect of the previous task sequence ("N-3 effect") is further investigated by varying the cue-stimulus interval (CSI), allowing for short (100 ms) or long (900 ms) preparation time for the upcoming task. If increased cognitive control after ABA involves a better preparation for the upcoming task, the N-3 effect should be larger with long than short CSI. The results clearly show that this is not the case. In Experiment 1, the N-3 effect was smaller with long than short CSI; in Experiment 2, the N-3 effect was not affected by CSI. Diffusion model analysis confirmed previous results in the literature (regarding the effect of CSI and of the ABA-CBA difference); however, the N-3 effect was not unequivocally associated with any of the diffusion model parameters. In exploratory analysis, we also tested the alternative hypothesis that the N-3 effect involves more effective task shielding, which would be reflected in reduced congruency effects in trials following ABA, relative to trials following CBA; congruency effects did not differ between these conditions. Taken together, we can rule out two potential explanations of the N-3 effect: Neither is this effect due to enhanced task preparation, nor to more effective task shielding.

  15. Attentional Selection of Feature Conjunctions Is Accomplished by Parallel and Independent Selection of Single Features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M; Hillyard, Steven A

    2015-07-08

    Experiments that study feature-based attention have often examined situations in which selection is based on a single feature (e.g., the color red). However, in more complex situations relevant stimuli may not be set apart from other stimuli by a single defining property but by a specific combination of features. Here, we examined sustained attentional selection of stimuli defined by conjunctions of color and orientation. Human observers attended to one out of four concurrently presented superimposed fields of randomly moving horizontal or vertical bars of red or blue color to detect brief intervals of coherent motion. Selective stimulus processing in early visual cortex was assessed by recordings of steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEPs) elicited by each of the flickering fields of stimuli. We directly contrasted attentional selection of single features and feature conjunctions and found that SSVEP amplitudes on conditions in which selection was based on a single feature only (color or orientation) exactly predicted the magnitude of attentional enhancement of SSVEPs when attending to a conjunction of both features. Furthermore, enhanced SSVEP amplitudes elicited by attended stimuli were accompanied by equivalent reductions of SSVEP amplitudes elicited by unattended stimuli in all cases. We conclude that attentional selection of a feature-conjunction stimulus is accomplished by the parallel and independent facilitation of its constituent feature dimensions in early visual cortex. The ability to perceive the world is limited by the brain's processing capacity. Attention affords adaptive behavior by selectively prioritizing processing of relevant stimuli based on their features (location, color, orientation, etc.). We found that attentional mechanisms for selection of different features belonging to the same object operate independently and in parallel: concurrent attentional selection of two stimulus features is simply the sum of attending to each of those

  16. Event-related near-infrared spectroscopy detects conflict in the motor cortex in a Stroop task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szűcs, Dénes; Killikelly, Clare; Cutini, Simone

    2012-10-05

    The Stroop effect is one of the most popular models of conflict processing in neuroscience and psychology. The response conflict theory of the Stroop effect explains decreased performance in the incongruent condition of Stroop tasks by assuming that the task-relevant and the task-irrelevant stimulus features elicit conflicting response tendencies. However, to date, there is not much explicit neural evidence supporting this theory. Here we used functional near-infrared imaging (fNIRS) to examine whether conflict at the level of the motor cortex can be detected in the incongruent relative to the congruent condition of a Stroop task. Response conflict was determined by comparing the activity of the hemisphere ipsilateral to the response hand in the congruent and incongruent conditions. First, results provided explicit hemodynamic evidence supporting the response conflict theory of the Stroop effect: there was greater motor cortex activation in the hemisphere ipsilateral to the response hand in the incongruent than in the congruent condition during the initial stage of the hemodynamic response. Second, as fNIRS is still a relatively novel technology, it is methodologically significant that our data shows that fNIRS is able to detect a brief and transient increase in hemodynamic activity localized to the motor cortex, which in this study is related to subthreshold motor response activation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Occipital Alpha and Gamma Oscillations Support Complementary Mechanisms for Processing Stimulus Value Associations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Tom R; den Boer, Sebastiaan; Cools, Roshan; Jensen, Ole; Fallon, Sean James; Zumer, Johanna M

    2018-01-01

    Selective attention is reflected neurally in changes in the power of posterior neural oscillations in the alpha (8-12 Hz) and gamma (40-100 Hz) bands. Although a neural mechanism that allows relevant information to be selectively processed has its advantages, it may lead to lucrative or dangerous information going unnoticed. Neural systems are also in place for processing rewarding and punishing information. Here, we examine the interaction between selective attention (left vs. right) and stimulus's learned value associations (neutral, punished, or rewarded) and how they compete for control of posterior neural oscillations. We found that both attention and stimulus-value associations influenced neural oscillations. Whereas selective attention had comparable effects on alpha and gamma oscillations, value associations had dissociable effects on these neural markers of attention. Salient targets (associated with positive and negative outcomes) hijacked changes in alpha power-increasing hemispheric alpha lateralization when salient targets were attended, decreasing it when they were being ignored. In contrast, hemispheric gamma-band lateralization was specifically abolished by negative distractors. Source analysis indicated occipital generators of both attentional and value effects. Thus, posterior cortical oscillations support both the ability to selectively attend while at the same time retaining the ability to remain sensitive to valuable features in the environment. Moreover, the versatility of our attentional system to respond separately to salient from merely positively valued stimuli appears to be carried out by separate neural processes reflected in different frequency bands.

  18. Design of novel non-contact multimedia controller for disability by using visual stimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Jeng-Shyang; Lo, Chi-Chun; Tsai, Shang-Ho; Lin, Bor-Shyh

    2015-12-01

    The design of a novel non-contact multimedia controller is proposed in this study. Nowadays, multimedia controllers are generally used by patients and nursing assistants in the hospital. Conventional multimedia controllers usually involve in manual operation or other physical movements. However, it is more difficult for the disabled patients to operate the conventional multimedia controller by themselves; they might totally depend on others. Different from other multimedia controllers, the proposed system provides a novel concept of controlling multimedia via visual stimuli, without manual operation. The disabled patients can easily operate the proposed multimedia system by focusing on the control icons of a visual stimulus device, where a commercial tablet is used as the visual stimulus device. Moreover, a wearable and wireless electroencephalogram (EEG) acquisition device is also designed and implemented to easily monitor the user's EEG signals in daily life. Finally, the proposed system has been validated. The experimental result shows that the proposed system can effectively measure and extract the EEG feature related to visual stimuli, and its information transfer rate is also good. Therefore, the proposed non-contact multimedia controller exactly provides a good prototype of novel multimedia controlling scheme. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. American Thyroid Association Guidelines on the Management of Thyroid Nodules and Differentiated Thyroid Cancer Task Force Review and Recommendation on the Proposed Renaming of Encapsulated Follicular Variant Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma Without Invasion to Noninvasive Follicular Thyroid Neoplasm with Papillary-Like Nuclear Features.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haugen, Bryan R; Sawka, Anna M; Alexander, Erik K; Bible, Keith C; Caturegli, Patrizio; Doherty, Gerard M; Mandel, Susan J; Morris, John C; Nassar, Aziza; Pacini, Furio; Schlumberger, Martin; Schuff, Kathryn; Sherman, Steven I; Somerset, Hilary; Sosa, Julie Ann; Steward, David L; Wartofsky, Leonard; Williams, Michelle D

    2017-04-01

    American Thyroid Association (ATA) leadership asked the ATA Thyroid Nodules and Differentiated Thyroid Cancer Guidelines Task Force to review, comment on, and make recommendations related to the suggested new classification of encapsulated follicular variant papillary thyroid carcinoma (eFVPTC) without capsular or vascular invasion to noninvasive follicular thyroid neoplasm with papillary-like nuclear features (NIFTP). The task force consists of members from the 2015 guidelines task force with the recusal of three members who were authors on the paper under review. Four pathologists and one endocrinologist were added for this specific review. The manuscript proposing the new classification and related literature were assessed. It is recommended that the histopathologic nomenclature for eFVPTC without invasion be reclassified as a NIFTP, given the excellent prognosis of this neoplastic variant. This is a weak recommendation based on moderate-quality evidence. It is also noted that prospective studies are needed to validate the observed patient outcomes (and test performance in predicting thyroid cancer outcomes), as well as implications on patients' psychosocial health and economics.

  20. Does supernormal stimulus influence parental behaviour of the cuckoo's host?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Grim, T.; Honza, Marcel

    2001-01-01

    Roč. 49, č. 4 (2001), s. 322-329 ISSN 0340-5443 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6087801; GA AV ČR KSK2005601; GA MŠk VS96019 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6093917 Keywords : brood parasitism * supernormal stimulus * parental care Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 2.353, year: 2001

  1. 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)

  2. Compound stimulus extinction reduces spontaneous recovery in humans

    OpenAIRE

    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 paired with an electric shock. The target CS (CSA) was extinguished alone followed by compound presentations of the extinguished CSA and nonextinguished CSB. Reco...

  3. "Smart inhibition": electrophysiological evidence for the suppression of conflict-generating task rules during task switching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meiran, Nachshon; Hsieh, Shulan; Chang, Chi-Chih

    2011-09-01

    A major challenge for task switching is maintaining a balance between high task readiness and effectively ignoring irrelevant task rules. This calls for finely tuned inhibition that targets only the source of interference without adversely influencing other task-related representations. The authors show that irrelevant task rules generating response conflict are inhibited, causing their inefficient execution on the next trial (indicating the presence of competitor rule suppression[CRS];Meiran, Hsieh, & Dimov, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 36, 992-1002, 2010). To determine whether CRS influences task rules, rather than target stimuli or responses, the authors focused on the processing of the task cue before the target stimulus was presented and before the response could be chosen. As was predicted, CRS was found in the event-related potentials in two time windows during task cue processing. It was also found in three time windows after target presentation. Source localization analyses suggest the involvement of the right dorsal prefrontal cortex in all five time windows.

  4. Visual feature integration indicated by pHase-locked frontal-parietal EEG signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Steven; Takeda, Yuji; Singh, Archana

    2012-01-01

    The capacity to integrate multiple sources of information is a prerequisite for complex cognitive ability, such as finding a target uniquely identifiable by the conjunction of two or more features. Recent studies identified greater frontal-parietal synchrony during conjunctive than non-conjunctive (feature) search. Whether this difference also reflects greater information integration, rather than just differences in cognitive strategy (e.g., top-down versus bottom-up control of attention), or task difficulty is uncertain. Here, we examine the first possibility by parametrically varying the number of integrated sources from one to three and measuring phase-locking values (PLV) of frontal-parietal EEG electrode signals, as indicators of synchrony. Linear regressions, under hierarchical false-discovery rate control, indicated significant positive slopes for number of sources on PLV in the 30-38 Hz, 175-250 ms post-stimulus frequency-time band for pairs in the sagittal plane (i.e., F3-P3, Fz-Pz, F4-P4), after equating conditions for behavioural performance (to exclude effects due to task difficulty). No such effects were observed for pairs in the transverse plane (i.e., F3-F4, C3-C4, P3-P4). These results provide support for the idea that anterior-posterior phase-locking in the lower gamma-band mediates integration of visual information. They also provide a potential window into cognitive development, seen as developing the capacity to integrate more sources of information.

  5. A Randomized Controlled ERP Study on the Effects of Multi-Domain Cognitive Training and Task Difficulty on Task Switching Performance in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küper, Kristina; Gajewski, Patrick D.; Frieg, Claudia; Falkenstein, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Executive functions are subject to a marked age-related decline, but have been shown to benefit from cognitive training interventions. As of yet, it is, however, still relatively unclear which neural mechanism can mediate training-related performance gains. In the present electrophysiological study, we examined the effects of multi-domain cognitive training on performance in an untrained cue-based task switch paradigm featuring Stroop color words: participants either had to indicate the word meaning of Stroop stimuli (word task) or perform the more difficult task of color naming (color task). One-hundred and three older adults (>65 years old) were randomly assigned to a training group receiving a 4-month multi-domain cognitive training, a passive no-contact control group or an active (social) control group receiving a 4-month relaxation training. For all groups, we recorded performance and EEG measures before and after the intervention. For the cognitive training group, but not for the two control groups, we observed an increase in response accuracy at posttest, irrespective of task and trial type. No training-related effects on reaction times were found. Cognitive training was also associated with an overall increase in N2 amplitude and a decrease of P2 latency on single trials. Training-related performance gains were thus likely mediated by an enhancement of response selection and improved access to relevant stimulus-response mappings. Additionally, cognitive training was associated with an amplitude decrease in the time window of the target-locked P3 at fronto-central electrodes. An increase in the switch positivity during advance task preparation emerged after both cognitive and relaxation training. Training-related behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) effects were not modulated by task difficulty. The data suggest that cognitive training increased slow negative potentials during target processing which enhanced the N2 and reduced a subsequent P3-like

  6. 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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  8. The approach to engineering tasks composition on knowledge portals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novogrudska, Rina; Globa, Larysa; Schill, Alexsander; Romaniuk, Ryszard; Wójcik, Waldemar; Karnakova, Gaini; Kalizhanova, Aliya

    2017-08-01

    The paper presents an approach to engineering tasks composition on engineering knowledge portals. The specific features of engineering tasks are highlighted, their analysis makes the basis for partial engineering tasks integration. The formal algebraic system for engineering tasks composition is proposed, allowing to set the context-independent formal structures for engineering tasks elements' description. The method of engineering tasks composition is developed that allows to integrate partial calculation tasks into general calculation tasks on engineering portals, performed on user request demand. The real world scenario «Calculation of the strength for the power components of magnetic systems» is represented, approving the applicability and efficiency of proposed approach.

  9. Comparison of diffusion-weighted fMRI and BOLD fMRI responses in a verbal working memory task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aso, Toshihiko; Urayama, Shin-ichi; Fukuyama, Hidenao; Le Bihan, Denis

    2013-01-01

    Diffusion-weighted functional MRI (DfMRI) has been reported to have a different response pattern in the visual cortex than that of BOLD-fMRI. Especially, the DfMRI signal shows a constantly faster response at both onset and offset of the stimulus, suggesting that the DfMRI signal might be more directly linked to neuronal events than the hemodynamic response. However, because the DfMRI response also contains a residual sensitivity to BOLD this hypothesis has been challenged. Using a verbal working memory task we show that the DfMRI time-course features are preserved outside visual cortices, but also less liable to between-subject/between-regional variation than the BOLD response. The overall findings not only support the feasibility of DfMRI as an approach for functional brain imaging, but also strengthen the uniqueness of the DfMRI signal origin. (authors)

  10. Beyond a Mask and Against the Bottleneck: Retroactive Dual-Task Interference During Working Memory Consolidation of a Masked Visual Target

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nieuwenstein, Mark; Wyble, Brad

    While studies on visual memory commonly assume that the consolidation of a visual stimulus into working memory is interrupted by a trailing mask, studies on dual-task interference suggest that the consolidation of a stimulus can continue for several hundred milliseconds after a mask. As a result,

  11. Implicit and Explicit Attention to Pictures and Words: An fMRI-Study of Concurrent Emotional Stimulus Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flaisch, Tobias; Imhof, Martin; Schmälzle, Ralf; Wentz, Klaus-Ulrich; Ibach, Bernd; Schupp, Harald T.

    2015-01-01

    The present study utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine the neural processing of concurrently presented emotional stimuli under varying explicit and implicit attention demands. Specifically, in separate trials, participants indicated the category of either pictures or words. The words were placed over the center of the pictures and the picture-word compound-stimuli were presented for 1500 ms in a rapid event-related design. The results reveal pronounced main effects of task and emotion: the picture categorization task prompted strong activations in visual, parietal, temporal, frontal, and subcortical regions; the word categorization task evoked increased activation only in left extrastriate cortex. Furthermore, beyond replicating key findings regarding emotional picture and word processing, the results point to a dissociation of semantic-affective and sensory-perceptual processes for words: while emotional words engaged semantic-affective networks of the left hemisphere regardless of task, the increased activity in left extrastriate cortex associated with explicitly attending to words was diminished when the word was overlaid over an erotic image. Finally, we observed a significant interaction between Picture Category and Task within dorsal visual-associative regions, inferior parietal, and dorsolateral, and medial prefrontal cortices: during the word categorization task, activation was increased in these regions when the words were overlaid over erotic as compared to romantic pictures. During the picture categorization task, activity in these areas was relatively decreased when categorizing erotic as compared to romantic pictures. Thus, the emotional intensity of the pictures strongly affected brain regions devoted to the control of task-related word or picture processing. These findings are discussed with respect to the interplay of obligatory stimulus processing with task-related attentional control mechanisms. PMID:26733895

  12. Implicit and explicit attention to pictures and words: An fMRI-study of concurrent emotional stimulus processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias eFlaisch

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The present study utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to examine the neural processing of concurrently presented emotional stimuli under varying explicit and implicit attention demands. Specifically, in separate trials, participants indicated the category of either pictures or words. The words were placed over the center of the pictures and the picture-word compound-stimuli were presented for 1500 ms in a rapid event-related design. The results reveal pronounced main effects of task and emotion: the picture categorization task prompted strong activations in visual, parietal, temporal, frontal, and subcortical regions; the word categorization task evoked increased activation only in left extrastriate cortex. Furthermore, beyond replicating key findings regarding emotional picture and word processing, the results point to a dissociation of semantic-affective and sensory-perceptual processes for words: while emotional words engaged semantic-affective networks of the left hemisphere regardless of task, the increased activity in left extrastriate cortex associated with explicitly attending to words was diminished when the word was overlaid over an erotic image. Finally, we observed a significant interaction between Picture Category and Task within dorsal visual-associative regions, inferior parietal, and dorsolateral and medial prefrontal cortices: during the word categorization task, activation was increased in these regions when the words were overlaid over erotic as compared to romantic pictures. During the picture categorization task, activity in these areas was relatively decreased when categorizing erotic as compared to romantic pictures. Thus, the emotional intensity of the pictures strongly affected brain regions devoted to the control of task-related word or picture processing. These findings are discussed with respect to the interplay of obligatory stimulus processing with task-related attentional control mechanisms.

  13. Implicit and Explicit Attention to Pictures and Words: An fMRI-Study of Concurrent Emotional Stimulus Processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flaisch, Tobias; Imhof, Martin; Schmälzle, Ralf; Wentz, Klaus-Ulrich; Ibach, Bernd; Schupp, Harald T

    2015-01-01

    The present study utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine the neural processing of concurrently presented emotional stimuli under varying explicit and implicit attention demands. Specifically, in separate trials, participants indicated the category of either pictures or words. The words were placed over the center of the pictures and the picture-word compound-stimuli were presented for 1500 ms in a rapid event-related design. The results reveal pronounced main effects of task and emotion: the picture categorization task prompted strong activations in visual, parietal, temporal, frontal, and subcortical regions; the word categorization task evoked increased activation only in left extrastriate cortex. Furthermore, beyond replicating key findings regarding emotional picture and word processing, the results point to a dissociation of semantic-affective and sensory-perceptual processes for words: while emotional words engaged semantic-affective networks of the left hemisphere regardless of task, the increased activity in left extrastriate cortex associated with explicitly attending to words was diminished when the word was overlaid over an erotic image. Finally, we observed a significant interaction between Picture Category and Task within dorsal visual-associative regions, inferior parietal, and dorsolateral, and medial prefrontal cortices: during the word categorization task, activation was increased in these regions when the words were overlaid over erotic as compared to romantic pictures. During the picture categorization task, activity in these areas was relatively decreased when categorizing erotic as compared to romantic pictures. Thus, the emotional intensity of the pictures strongly affected brain regions devoted to the control of task-related word or picture processing. These findings are discussed with respect to the interplay of obligatory stimulus processing with task-related attentional control mechanisms.

  14. A Reverse Stroop Task with Mouse Tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Naohide; Incera, Sara; McLennan, Conor T.

    2016-01-01

    In a reverse Stroop task, observers respond to the meaning of a color word irrespective of the color in which the word is printed—for example, the word red may be printed in the congruent color (red), an incongruent color (e.g., blue), or a neutral color (e.g., white). Although reading of color words in this task is often thought to be neither facilitated by congruent print colors nor interfered with incongruent print colors, this interference has been detected by using a response method that does not give any bias in favor of processing of word meanings or processing of print colors. On the other hand, evidence for the presence of facilitation in this task has been scarce, even though this facilitation is theoretically possible. By modifying the task such that participants respond to a stimulus color word by pointing to a corresponding response word on a computer screen with a mouse, the present study investigated the possibility that not only interference but also facilitation would take place in a reverse Stroop task. Importantly, in this study, participants’ responses were dynamically tracked by recording the entire trajectories of the mouse. Arguably, this method provided richer information about participants’ performance than traditional measures such as reaction time and accuracy, allowing for more detailed (and thus potentially more sensitive) investigation of facilitation and interference in the reverse Stroop task. These trajectories showed that the mouse’s approach toward correct response words was significantly delayed by incongruent print colors but not affected by congruent print colors, demonstrating that only interference, not facilitation, was present in the current task. Implications of these findings are discussed within a theoretical framework in which the strength of association between a task and its response method plays a critical role in determining how word meanings and print colors interact in reverse Stroop tasks. PMID:27199881

  15. Phasic and tonic neuron ensemble codes for stimulus-environment conjunctions in the lateral entorhinal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pilkiw, Maryna; Insel, Nathan; Cui, Younghua; Finney, Caitlin; Morrissey, Mark D; Takehara-Nishiuchi, Kaori

    2017-07-06

    The lateral entorhinal cortex (LEC) is thought to bind sensory events with the environment where they took place. To compare the relative influence of transient events and temporally stable environmental stimuli on the firing of LEC cells, we recorded neuron spiking patterns in the region during blocks of a trace eyeblink conditioning paradigm performed in two environments and with different conditioning stimuli. Firing rates of some neurons were phasically selective for conditioned stimuli in a way that depended on which room the rat was in; nearly all neurons were tonically selective for environments in a way that depended on which stimuli had been presented in those environments. As rats moved from one environment to another, tonic neuron ensemble activity exhibited prospective information about the conditioned stimulus associated with the environment. Thus, the LEC formed phasic and tonic codes for event-environment associations, thereby accurately differentiating multiple experiences with overlapping features.

  16. How task demands shape brain responses to visual food cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohl, Tanja Maria; Tempelmann, Claus; Noesselt, Toemme

    2017-06-01

    Several previous imaging studies have aimed at identifying the neural basis of visual food cue processing in humans. However, there is little consistency of the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) results across studies. Here, we tested the hypothesis that this variability across studies might - at least in part - be caused by the different tasks employed. In particular, we assessed directly the influence of task set on brain responses to food stimuli with fMRI using two tasks (colour vs. edibility judgement, between-subjects design). When participants judged colour, the left insula, the left inferior parietal lobule, occipital areas, the left orbitofrontal cortex and other frontal areas expressed enhanced fMRI responses to food relative to non-food pictures. However, when judging edibility, enhanced fMRI responses to food pictures were observed in the superior and middle frontal gyrus and in medial frontal areas including the pregenual anterior cingulate cortex and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. This pattern of results indicates that task sets can significantly alter the neural underpinnings of food cue processing. We propose that judging low-level visual stimulus characteristics - such as colour - triggers stimulus-related representations in the visual and even in gustatory cortex (insula), whereas discriminating abstract stimulus categories activates higher order representations in both the anterior cingulate and prefrontal cortex. Hum Brain Mapp 38:2897-2912, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. 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

  18. 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…

  19. A loud auditory stimulus overcomes voluntary movement limitation in cervical dystonia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tereza Serranová

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Patients with cervical dystonia (CD present with an impaired performance of voluntary neck movements, which are usually slow and limited. We hypothesized that such abnormality could involve defective preparation for task execution. Therefore, we examined motor preparation in CD patients using the StartReact method. In this test, a startling auditory stimulus (SAS is delivered unexpectedly at the time of the imperative signal (IS in a reaction time task to cause a faster execution of the prepared motor programme. We expected that CD patients would show an abnormal StartReact phenomenon. METHODS: Fifteen CD patients and 15 age matched control subjects (CS were asked to perform a rotational movement (RM to either side as quick as possible immediately after IS perception (a low intensity electrical stimulus to the II finger. In randomly interspersed test trials (25% a 130 dB SAS was delivered simultaneously with the IS. We recorded RMs in the horizontal plane with a high speed video camera (2.38 ms per frame in synchronization with the IS. The RM kinematic-parameters (latency, velocity, duration and amplitude were analyzed using video-editing software and screen protractor. Patients were asked to rate the difficulty of their RMs in a numerical rating scale. RESULTS: In control trials, CD patients executed slower RMs (repeated measures ANOVA, p<0.10(-5, and reached a smaller final head position angle relative to the midline (p<0.05, than CS. In test trials, SAS improved all RMs in both groups (p<0.10(-14. In addition, patients were more likely to reach beyond their baseline RM than CS (χ(2, p<0.001 and rated their performance better than in control trials (t-test, p<0.01. CONCLUSION: We found improvement of kinematic parameters and subjective perception of motor performance in CD patients with StartReact testing. Our results suggest that CD patients reach an adequate level of motor preparation before task execution.

  20. Task conflict in the Stroop task: When Stroop interference decreases as Stroop facilitation increases in a low task conflict context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Andrew Parris

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available In the present study participants completed two blocks of the Stroop task, one in which the Response-Stimulus Interval (RSI was 3500ms and one in which RSI was 200ms. It was expected that, in line with previous research, the shorter RSI would induce a low Task Conflict context by increasing focus on the colour identification goal in the Stroop task. Based on previous research showing the role of Task Conflict in the presence or absence Stroop facilitation, this was expected to lead to the novel finding of an increase in facilitation and simultaneous decrease in interference. Such a finding would be problematic for models of Stroop effects that predict these indices of performance should be affected in tandem. A crossover interaction is reported supporting these predictions. As predicted, the shorter RSI resulted in incongruent and congruent trial RTs decreasing relative to a static neutral baseline condition; hence interference decreased as facilitation increased. An explanatory model (expanding on the work of Goldfarb, Henik and colleagues is presented that: 1 Shows how under certain conditions the predictions from single mechanism models hold true (i.e. when Task conflict is held constant; 2 Shows how it is possible that interference can be affected by an experimental manipulation that leaves facilitation apparently untouched and; 3 Predicts that facilitation cannot be independently affected by an experimental manipulation.

  1. The effects of study task on prestimulus subsequent memory effects in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Chastelaine, Marianne; Rugg, Michael D

    2015-11-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was employed to examine the effects of a study task manipulation on pre-stimulus activity in the hippocampus predictive of later successful recollection. Eighteen young participants were scanned while making either animacy or syllable judgments on visually presented study words. Cues presented before each word denoted which judgment should be made. Following the study phase, a surprise recognition memory test was administered in which each test item had to be endorsed as "Remembered," "Known," or "New." As expected, "deep" animacy judgments led to better memory for study items than did "shallow" syllable judgments. In both study tasks, pre-stimulus subsequent recollection effects were evident in the interval between the cue and the study item in bilateral anterior hippocampus. However, the direction of the effects differed according to the study task: whereas pre-stimulus hippocampal activity on animacy trials was greater for later recollected items than items judged old on the basis of familiarity (replicating prior findings), these effects reversed for syllable trials. We propose that the direction of pre-stimulus hippocampal subsequent memory effects depends on whether an optimal pre-stimulus task set facilitates study processing that is conducive or unconducive to the formation of contextually rich episodic memories. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Featuring animacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Ritter

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Algonquian languages are famous for their animacy-based grammatical properties—an animacy based noun classification system and direct/inverse system which gives rise to animacy hierarchy effects in the determination of verb agreement. In this paper I provide new evidence for the proposal that the distinctive properties of these languages is due to the use of participant-based features, rather than spatio-temporal ones, for both nominal and verbal functional categories (Ritter & Wiltschko 2009, 2014. Building on Wiltschko (2012, I develop a formal treatment of the Blackfoot aspectual system that assumes a category Inner Aspect (cf. MacDonald 2008, Travis 1991, 2010. Focusing on lexical aspect in Blackfoot, I demonstrate that the classification of both nouns (Seinsarten and verbs (Aktionsarten is based on animacy, rather than boundedness, resulting in a strikingly different aspectual system for both categories. 

  3. Changes in regional cerebral blood flow during auditory cognitive tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ohyama, Masashi; Kitamura, Shin; Terashi, Akiro; Senda, Michio.

    1993-01-01

    In order to investigate the relation between auditory cognitive function and regional brain activation, we measured the changes in the regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) using positron emission tomography (PET) during the 'odd-ball' paradigm in ten normal healthy volunteers. The subjects underwent 3 tasks, twice for each, while the evoked potential was recorded. In these tasks, the auditory stimulus was a series of pure tones delivered every 1.5 sec binaurally at 75 dB from the earphones. Task A: the stimulus was a series of tones with 1000 Hz only, and the subject was instructed to only hear. Task B: the stimulus was a series of tones with 1000 Hz only, and the subject was instructed to push the button on detecting a tone. Task C: the stimulus was a series of pure tones delivered every 1.5 sec binaurally at 75 dB with a frequency of 1000 Hz (non-target) in 80% and 2000 Hz (target) in 20% at random, and the subject was instructed to push the button on detecting a target tone. The event related potential (P300) was observed in task C (Pz: 334.3±19.6 msec). At each task, the CBF was measured using PET with i.v. injection of 1.5 GBq of O-15 water. The changes in CBF associated with auditory cognition was evaluated by the difference between the CBF images in task C and B. Localized increase was observed in the anterior cingulate cortex (in all subjects), the bilateral associate auditory cortex, the prefrontal cortex and the parietal cortex. The latter three areas had a large individual variation in the location of foci. These results suggested the role of those cortical areas in auditory cognition. The anterior cingulate was most activated (15.0±2.24% of global CBF). This region was not activated in the condition of task B minus task A. The anterior cingulate is a part of Papez's circuit that is related to memory and other higher cortical function. These results suggested that this area may play an important role in cognition as well as in attention. (author)

  4. Changes in prefrontal neuronal activity after learning to perform a spatial working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Xue-Lian; Meyer, Travis; Stanford, Terrence R; Constantinidis, Christos

    2011-12-01

    The prefrontal cortex is considered essential for learning to perform cognitive tasks though little is known about how the representation of stimulus properties is altered by learning. To address this issue, we recorded neuronal activity in monkeys before and after training on a task that required visual working memory. After the subjects learned to perform the task, we observed activation of more prefrontal neurons and increased activity during working memory maintenance. The working memory-related increase in firing rate was due mostly to regular-spiking putative pyramidal neurons. Unexpectedly, the selectivity of neurons for stimulus properties and the ability of neurons to discriminate between stimuli decreased as the information about stimulus properties was apparently present in neural firing prior to training and neuronal selectivity degraded after training in the task. The effect was robust and could not be accounted for by differences in sampling sites, selection of neurons, level of performance, or merely the elapse of time. The results indicate that, in contrast to the effects of perceptual learning, mastery of a cognitive task degrades the apparent stimulus selectivity as neurons represent more abstract information related to the task. This effect is countered by the recruitment of more neurons after training.

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

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    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

  6. Dissociating Goal-Directed and Stimulus-Driven Determinants in Attentional Capture

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    Louis K. H. Chan

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Although attentional capture is now a commonplace finding, the exact roles played by goal-directed and stimulus-driven determents remain elusive. An unsettled issue is on the relative contribution of attentional set and visual saliency. In the present study, we investigated this issue by mixing color and orientation search trials, so that distractors of either feature dimension fell into the current attentional set. In our test, color features were more salient. As a result, in orientation search, whereas a color distractor produced huge capture (109 ms, an orientation distractor produced moderate capture (50 ms. With color targets, distractors were not interfering. On one hand, these results reflect that relative salience of the target and the distractor is critical for producing capture; on the other hand, a huge capture size associated with a nontarget dimension feature is novel. Similar previous measurements, but without matching the attentional set, consistently report attentional capture of only 20-30 ms. This comparison shows the role played by attentional set. Taken together, we suggest that visual saliency determines search order, and sets the platform for capture. However, attentional dwell time on the distractor is determined by how much it matches the current attentional set, and in turn explains the capture size.

  7. The Effect of Cell Phone Conversation on Drivers’ Reaction Time to Audio Stimulus: Investigating the Theory of Multiple Resources and Central Resource of Attention

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    Seyed Kazem Mousavi-Sadati

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: This research was aimed at investigating the theory of multiple resources and central resource of attention on secondary task performance of talking with two types of cell phone during driving. Materials & Methods: Using disposal sampling, 25 male participants were selected and their reaction to auditory stimulus in three different driving conditions (no conversation with phone, conversation with handheld phone and hands-free phone were recorded. Driving conditions have been changed from a participant to another participant in order to control the sequence of tests and participants familiarity with the test conditions. Results: the results of data analysis with descriptive statistics and Mauchly’s Test of Sphericity, One- factor repeated measures ANOVA and Paired-Samples T test showed that different driving conditions can affect the reaction time (P0.001. Phone Conversation with hands-free phone increases drivers’ simple reaction time to auditory stimulus (P<0.001. Using handheld phone does not increase drivers’ reaction time to auditory stimulus over hands-free phone (P<0.001. Conclusion: The results confirmed that the performance quality of dual tasks and multiple tasks can be predicted by Four-dimensional multiple resources model of attention and all traffic laws in connection with the handheld phone also have to be spread to the use of hands-free phone.

  8. APOE-ε4 Allele Altered the Rest-Stimulus Interactions in Healthy Middle-Aged Adults.

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    Feng-Xian Yan

    Full Text Available The apolipoprotein E-ε4 allele is a well-known genetic risk factor for late-onset Alzheimer's disease, which also impacts the cognitive functions and brain network connectivity in healthy middle-aged adults without dementia. Previous studies mainly focused on the effects of apolipoprotein E-ε4 allele on single index using task or resting-state fMRI. However, how these evoked and spontaneous BOLD indices interact with each other remains largely unknown. Therefore, we evaluated the 'rest-stimulus interaction' between working-memory activation and resting-state connectivity in middle-aged apolipoprotein E-ε4 carriers (n=9 and non-carriers (n=8. Four n-back task scans (n = 0, 1, 2, 3 and one resting-state scan were acquired at a 3T clinical MRI scanner. The working-memory beta maps of low-, moderate-, and high-memory loads and resting-state connectivity maps of default mode, executive control, and hippocampal networks were derived and compared between groups. Apolipoprotein E-ε4 carriers presented declined working-memory activation in the high-memory load across whole brain regions and reduced hippocampal connectivity compared with non-carriers. In addition, disrupted rest-stimulus interactions were found in the right anterior insula and bilateral parahippocampal regions for middle-aged adults with apolipoprotein E-ε4 allele. The rest-stimulus interaction improved the detectability of network integrity changes in apolipoprotein E-ε4 carriers, demonstrating the disrupted intrinsic connectivity within the executive-functional regions and the modulated memory-encoding capability within hippocampus-related regions.

  9. 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

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

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    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. Feature-Based Change Detection Reveals Inconsistent Individual Differences in Visual Working Memory Capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ambrose, Joseph P; Wijeakumar, Sobanawartiny; Buss, Aaron T; Spencer, John P

    2016-01-01

    Visual working memory (VWM) is a key cognitive system that enables people to hold visual information in mind after a stimulus has been removed and compare past and present to detect changes that have occurred. VWM is severely capacity limited to around 3-4 items, although there are robust individual differences in this limit. Importantly, these individual differences are evident in neural measures of VWM capacity. Here, we capitalized on recent work showing that capacity is lower for more complex stimulus dimension. In particular, we asked whether individual differences in capacity remain consistent if capacity is shifted by a more demanding task, and, further, whether the correspondence between behavioral and neural measures holds across a shift in VWM capacity. Participants completed a change detection (CD) task with simple colors and complex shapes in an fMRI experiment. As expected, capacity was significantly lower for the shape dimension. Moreover, there were robust individual differences in behavioral estimates of VWM capacity across dimensions. Similarly, participants with a stronger BOLD response for color also showed a strong neural response for shape within the lateral occipital cortex, intraparietal sulcus (IPS), and superior IPS. Although there were robust individual differences in the behavioral and neural measures, we found little evidence of systematic brain-behavior correlations across feature dimensions. This suggests that behavioral and neural measures of capacity provide different views onto the processes that underlie VWM and CD. Recent theoretical approaches that attempt to bridge between behavioral and neural measures are well positioned to address these findings in future work.

  12. Neural correlates of derived relational responding on tests of stimulus equivalence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cataldo Michael F

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An essential component of cognition and language involves the formation of new conditional relations between stimuli based upon prior experiences. Results of investigations on transitive inference (TI highlight a prominent role for the medial temporal lobe in maintaining associative relations among sequentially arranged stimuli (A > B > C > D > E. In this investigation, medial temporal lobe activity was assessed while subjects completed "Stimulus Equivalence" (SE tests that required deriving conditional relations among stimuli within a class (A ≡ B ≡ C. Methods Stimuli consisted of six consonant-vowel-consonant triads divided into two classes (A1, B1, C1; A2, B2, C2. A simultaneous matching-to-sample task and differential reinforcement were employed during pretraining to establish the conditional relations A1:B1 and B1:C1 in class 1 and A2:B2 and B2:C2 in class 2. During functional neuroimaging, recombined stimulus pairs were presented and subjects judged (yes/no whether stimuli were related. SE tests involved presenting three different types of within-class pairs: Symmetrical (B1 A1; C1 B1; B2 A2; C2 B2, and Transitive (A1 C1; A2 C2 and Equivalence (C1 A1; C2 A2 relations separated by a nodal stimulus. Cross-class 'Foils' consisting of unrelated stimuli (e.g., A1 C2 were also presented. Results Relative to cross-class Foils, Transitive and Equivalence relations requiring inferential judgments elicited bilateral activation in the anterior hippocampus while Symmetrical relations elicited activation in the parahippocampus. Relative to each derived relation, Foils generally elicited bilateral activation in the parahippocampus, as well as in frontal and parietal lobe regions. Conclusion Activation observed in the hippocampus to nodal-dependent derived conditional relations (Transitive and Equivalence relations highlights its involvement in maintaining relational structure and flexible memory expression among stimuli within a

  13. Test-Retest Reliability of Standard and Emotional Stroop Tasks: An Investigation of Color-Word and Picture-Word Versions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauss, Gregory P.; Allen, Daniel N.; Jorgensen, Melinda L.; Cramer, Stacey L.

    2005-01-01

    Previous studies have examined the reliability of scores derived from various Stroop tasks. However, few studies have compared reliability of more recently developed Stroop variants such as emotional Stroop tasks to standard versions of the Stroop. The current study developed four different single-stimulus Stroop tasks and compared test-retest…

  14. Brief-stimulus presentations on multiform tandem schedules

    OpenAIRE

    Reed, Phil

    1994-01-01

    Three experiments examined the influence of a brief stimulus (a light) on the behavior of food-deprived rats whose lever pressing on tandem schedules comprising components of different schedule types resulted in food presentation. In Experiment 1, either a tandem variable-ratio variable-interval or a tandem variable-interval variable-ratio schedule was used. The variable-interval requirement in the tandem variable-ratio variable-interval schedule was yoked to the time taken to complete the va...

  15. The poverty of the stimulus: Quine and Wittgenstein

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    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.

  16. Escaping the recent past: which stimulus dimensions influence proactive interference?

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    Craig, Kimberly S; Berman, Marc G; Jonides, John; Lustig, Cindy

    2013-07-01

    Proactive interference occurs when information from the past disrupts current processing and is a major source of confusion and errors in short-term memory (STM; Wickens, Born, & Allen, Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 2:440-445, 1963). The present investigation examines potential boundary conditions for interference, testing the hypothesis that potential competitors must be similar along task-relevant dimensions to influence proactive interference effects. We manipulated both the type of task being completed (Experiments 1, 2, and 3) and dimensions of similarity irrelevant to the current task (Experiments 4 and 5) to determine how the recent presentation of a probe item would affect the speed with which participants could reject that item. Experiments 1, 2, and 3 contrasted STM judgments, which require temporal information, with semantic and perceptual judgments, for which temporal information is irrelevant. In Experiments 4 and 5, task-irrelevant information (perceptual similarity) was manipulated within the recent probes task. We found that interference from past items affected STM task performance but did not affect performance in semantic or perceptual judgment tasks. Conversely, similarity along a nominally irrelevant perceptual dimension did not affect the magnitude of interference in STM tasks. Results are consistent with the view that items in STM are represented by noisy codes consisting of multiple dimensions and that interference occurs when items are similar to each other and, thus, compete along the dimensions relevant to target selection.

  17. Task-related modulation of anterior theta and posterior alpha EEG reflects top-down preparation

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    Park Hae-Jeong

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prestimulus EEG alpha activity in humans has been considered to reflect ongoing top-down preparation for the performance of subsequent tasks. Since theta oscillations may be related to poststimulus top-down processing, we investigated whether prestimulus EEG theta activity also reflects top-down cognitive preparation for a stimulus. Results We recorded EEG data from 15 healthy controls performing a color and shape discrimination task, and used the wavelet transformation to investigate the time course and power of oscillatory ac