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Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience

David Rothlein, Joseph DeGutis, Michael Esterman
Attention is thought to facilitate both the representation of task-relevant features and the communication of these representations across large-scale brain networks. However, attention is not all or none, but rather it fluctuates between stable/accurate (in-the-zone) and variable/error-prone (out-of-the-zone) states. Here we ask how different attentional states relate to the neural processing and transmission of task-relevant information. Specifically, during in-the-zone periods: (1) Do neural representations of task stimuli have greater fidelity? (2) Is there increased communication of this stimulus information across large-scale brain networks? Finally, (3) can the influence of performance-contingent reward be differentiated from zone-based fluctuations? To address these questions, we used fMRI and representational similarity analysis during a sustained attention task (the gradCPT)...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Michele Scaltritti, F-Xavier Alario, Marieke Longcamp
Human activities consisting of multiple component actions require the generation of ordered sequences. This article investigates the scope of response planning in highly serial task, typing, by means of ERPs indexing motor response preparation. Specifically, we compared motor-related ERPs yielded by words typed using a single hand against words that had all keystrokes typed with a single hand, except for a deviant one, typed with the opposite hand. The deviant keystroke occurred either early in the typed sequence, corresponding to the second or third letters, or late, corresponding to the penultimate or last letter...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Sebastian Michelmann, Howard Bowman, Simon Hanslmayr
Forming a memory often entails the association of recent experience with present events. This recent experience is usually an information-rich and dynamic representation of the world around us. We here show that associating a static cue with a previously shown dynamic stimulus yields a detectable, dynamic representation of this stimulus. We further implicate this representation in the decrease of low-frequency power (∼4-30 Hz) in the ongoing EEG, which is a well-known correlate of successful memory formation...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Andrea Olguin, Tristan A Bekinschtein, Mirjana Bozic
We examined how attention modulates the neural encoding of continuous speech under different types of interference. In an EEG experiment, participants attended to a narrative in English while ignoring a competing stream in the other ear. Four different types of interference were presented to the unattended ear: a different English narrative, a narrative in a language unknown to the listener (Spanish), a well-matched nonlinguistic acoustic interference (Musical Rain), and no interference. Neural encoding of attended and unattended signals was assessed by calculating cross-correlations between their respective envelopes and the EEG recordings...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Mariam Aly, Janice Chen, Nicholas B Turk-Browne, Uri Hasson
The posterior medial network is at the apex of a temporal integration hierarchy in the brain, integrating information over many seconds of viewing intact, but not scrambled, movies. This has been interpreted as an effect of temporal structure. Such structure in movies depends on preexisting event schemas, but temporal structure can also arise de novo from learning. Here we examined the relative role of schema-consistent temporal structure and arbitrary but consistent temporal structure on the human posterior medial network...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Méadhbh B Brosnan, Mahnaz Arvaneh, Siobhán Harty, Tara Maguire, Redmond O'Connell, Ian H Robertson, Paul M Dockree
The ability to sustain attention is integral to healthy cognition in aging. The right PFC (rPFC) is critical for maintaining high levels of attentional focus. Whether plasticity of this region can be harnessed to support sustained attention in older adults is unknown. We used transcranial direct current stimulation to increase cortical excitability of the rPFC, while monitoring behavioral and electrophysiological markers of sustained attention in older adults with suboptimal sustained attention capacity. During rPFC transcranial direct current stimulation, fewer lapses of attention occurred and electroencephalography signals of frontal engagement and early visual attention were enhanced...
July 13, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Matthias J Gruber, Liang-Tien Hsieh, Bernhard P Staresina, Christian E Elger, Juergen Fell, Nikolai Axmacher, Charan Ranganath
Events that violate predictions are thought to not only modulate activity within the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex (PFC) but also enhance communication between the two regions. Scalp and intracranial EEG studies have shown that oscillations in the theta frequency band are enhanced during processing of contextually unexpected information. Some theories suggest that the hippocampus and PFC interact during processing of unexpected events, and it is possible that theta oscillations may mediate these interactions...
June 28, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Pawel J Matusz, Suzanne Dikker, Alexander G Huth, Catherine Perrodin
Real-world environments are typically dynamic, complex, and multisensory in nature and require the support of top-down attention and memory mechanisms for us to be able to drive a car, make a shopping list, or pour a cup of coffee. Fundamental principles of perception and functional brain organization have been established by research utilizing well-controlled but simplified paradigms with basic stimuli. The last 30 years ushered a revolution in computational power, brain mapping, and signal processing techniques...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Linda Drijvers, Asli Özyürek, Ole Jensen
Previous work revealed that visual semantic information conveyed by gestures can enhance degraded speech comprehension, but the mechanisms underlying these integration processes under adverse listening conditions remain poorly understood. We used MEG to investigate how oscillatory dynamics support speech-gesture integration when integration load is manipulated by auditory (e.g., speech degradation) and visual semantic (e.g., gesture congruency) factors. Participants were presented with videos of an actress uttering an action verb in clear or degraded speech, accompanied by a matching (mixing gesture + "mixing") or mismatching (drinking gesture + "walking") gesture...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Arielle Tambini, Derek Evan Nee, Mark D'Esposito
The hippocampus plays a critical role in episodic memory, among other cognitive functions. However, few tools exist to causally manipulate hippocampal function in healthy human participants. Recent work has targeted hippocampal-cortical networks by performing TMS to a region interconnected with the hippocampus, posterior inferior parietal cortex (pIPC). Such hippocampal-targeted TMS enhances associative memory and influences hippocampal functional connectivity. However, it is currently unknown which stages of mnemonic processing (encoding or retrieval) are affected by hippocampal-targeted TMS...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Richard Ramsey
The perception of other people is instrumental in guiding social interactions. For example, the appearance of the human body cues a wide range of inferences regarding sex, age, health, and personality, as well as emotional state and intentions, which influence social behavior. To date, most neuroscience research on body perception has aimed to characterize the functional contribution of segregated patches of cortex in the ventral visual stream. In light of the growing prominence of network architectures in neuroscience, the current article reviews neuroimaging studies that measure functional integration between different brain regions during body perception...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Ye Yuan, Judy Major-Girardin, Steven Brown
People utilize multiple expressive modalities for communicating narrative ideas about past events. The three major ones are speech, pantomime, and drawing. The current study used functional magnetic resonance imaging to identify common brain areas that mediate narrative communication across these three sensorimotor mechanisms. In the scanner, participants were presented with short narrative prompts akin to newspaper headlines (e.g., "Surgeon finds scissors inside of patient"). The task was to generate a representation of the event, either by describing it verbally through speech, by pantomiming it gesturally, or by drawing it on a tablet...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Paolo A Grasso, Elisabetta Làdavas, Caterina Bertini, Serena Caltabiano, Gregor Thut, Stephanie Morand
Motion information can reach V5/MT through two parallel routes: one conveying information at early latencies through a direct subcortical route and the other reaching V5 later via recurrent projections through V1. Here, we tested the hypothesis that input via the faster direct pathway depends on motion characteristics. To this end, we presented motion stimuli to healthy human observers at different velocities (4.4°/sec vs. 23°/sec) with static stimuli as controls while applying transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) pulses over V5 or V1...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Suzanne Hoogeveen, Uffe Schjoedt, Michiel van Elk
This study examines the effects of expected transcranial stimulation on the error(-related) negativity (Ne or ERN) and the sense of agency in participants who perform a cognitive control task. Placebo transcranial direct current stimulation was used to elicit expectations of transcranially induced cognitive improvement or impairment. The improvement/impairment manipulation affected both the Ne/ERN and the sense of agency (i.e., whether participants attributed errors to oneself or the brain stimulation device): Expected improvement increased the ERN in response to errors compared with both impairment and control conditions...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Sori Baek, Amy L Daitch, Pedro Pinheiro-Chagas, Josef Parvizi
Past research has identified anatomically specific sites within the posterior inferior temporal gyrus (PITG) and the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) areas that are engaged during arithmetic processing. Although a small region of the PITG (known as the number form area) is selectively engaged in the processing of numerals, its surrounding area is activated during both digit and number word processing. In eight participants with intracranial electrodes, we compared the timing and selectivity of electrophysiological responses in the number form area-surround and IPS regions during arithmetic processing with digits and number words...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Anna Maria Alexandrou, Timo Saarinen, Jan Kujala, Riitta Salmelin
During natural speech perception, listeners must track the global speaking rate, that is, the overall rate of incoming linguistic information, as well as transient, local speaking rate variations occurring within the global speaking rate. Here, we address the hypothesis that this tracking mechanism is achieved through coupling of cortical signals to the amplitude envelope of the perceived acoustic speech signals. Cortical signals were recorded with magnetoencephalography (MEG) while participants perceived spontaneously produced speech stimuli at three global speaking rates (slow, normal/habitual, and fast)...
June 19, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Harrison Ritz, Matthew R Nassar, Michael J Frank, Amitai Shenhav
To behave adaptively in environments that are noisy and nonstationary, humans and other animals must monitor feedback from their environment and adjust their predictions and actions accordingly. An understudied approach for modeling these adaptive processes comes from the engineering field of control theory, which provides general principles for regulating dynamical systems, often without requiring a generative model. The proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller is one of the most popular models of industrial process control...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Valentinos Zachariou, Zaid N Safiullah, Leslie G Ungerleider
The fusiform and occipital face areas (FFA and OFA) are functionally defined brain regions in human ventral occipitotemporal cortex associated with face perception. There is an ongoing debate, however, whether these regions are face-specific or if they also facilitate the perception of nonface object categories. Here, we present evidence that, under certain conditions, bilateral FFA and OFA respond to a nonface category equivalently to faces. In two fMRI sessions, participants performed same-different judgments on two object categories (faces and chairs)...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Seyed-Mahdi Khaligh-Razavi, Radoslaw Martin Cichy, Dimitrios Pantazis, Aude Oliva
Animacy and real-world size are properties that describe any object and thus bring basic order into our perception of the visual world. Here, we investigated how the human brain processes real-world size and animacy. For this, we applied representational similarity to fMRI and MEG data to yield a view of brain activity with high spatial and temporal resolutions, respectively. Analysis of fMRI data revealed that a distributed and partly overlapping set of cortical regions extending from occipital to ventral and medial temporal cortex represented animacy and real-world size...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Matthew C Costello, Aaron T Buss
Visual working memory (VWM) is essential for executive function and is known to be compromised in older adults. Yet, the cognitive and neural processes associated with these age-related changes remain inconclusive. The purpose of this study is to explore such factors with a dynamic neural field (DNF) model that was manipulated to replicate the behavioral performances of younger and older adults in a change detection task. Although previous work has successfully modeled children and younger adult VWM performance, this study represents the first attempt to model older adult VWM performance within the DNF architecture...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
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