September 2015
Volume 15, Issue 12
Free
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2015
Comparing the functional profile of face-selective regions with the amygdala at 7 Tesla
Author Affiliations
  • David Pitcher
    Laboratory of Brain and Cognition, National Institute for Mental Health, Bethesda, MD, 20892, U.S.A.
  • Leslie Ungerleider
    Laboratory of Brain and Cognition, National Institute for Mental Health, Bethesda, MD, 20892, U.S.A.
Journal of Vision September 2015, Vol.15, 423. doi:10.1167/15.12.423
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      David Pitcher, Leslie Ungerleider; Comparing the functional profile of face-selective regions with the amygdala at 7 Tesla. Journal of Vision 2015;15(12):423. doi: 10.1167/15.12.423.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Prior fMRI studies have identified multiple face-selective regions in the human cortex but the functional division of labor between these regions is not yet clear. One hypothesis that has gained some empirical support is that face-selective regions in the superior temporal sulcus (STS) preferentially respond to the dynamic aspects of faces, whereas the fusiform face area (FFA) computes the static or invariant properties of faces (Pitcher et al., 2011). We further tested this hypothesis by examining how face-selective regions in the occipitotemporal cortex and the amygdala respond to dynamic and static face stimuli. High-field strength (7 Tesla) and high resolution (1.25 mm isotropic) scans allowed us to functionally define face-selective voxels in the amygdala in almost all participants. Preliminary analyses from 17 healthy adult subjects indicated that the right FFA and right occipital face area (OFA) responded equally to dynamic and static faces. Similarly, the amygdala showed a comparable response to dynamic faces, as compared to static faces. Conversely, a two-fold increase in response to dynamic faces was seen in the right posterior STS region. This pattern of responses in the amygdala, right posterior STS, right OFA, and right FFA suggests that the posterior STS may be preferentially involved in computing changeable aspects of faces, compared to the amygdala, FFA and OFA.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2015

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