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Xilin Zhang, Nicole Mlynaryk, Shruti Japee, Leslie Ungerleider; Multiple Objects of Attentional Selection in Human Visual Cortex. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):603. doi: 10.1167/16.12.603.
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© 2017 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
How many different objects we can select at once remains unclear. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to address this question as human subjects performed object-based attention tasks that required simultaneous attention to two objects that differed in either their features (Experiment 1) or locations (Experiment 2). In Experiment 1, subjects viewed stimuli consisting of a face transparently superimposed on a house. They either attended to the motion direction in a moving face with a static house (MFSH), a static face with a moving house (SFMH), and in a condition with a moving face with a moving house (MFMH), or attended to the static position in the MFSH and SFMH conditions, and in a condition with a static face with a static house (SFSH). When subjects attended to the motion direction, no significant difference in fMRI signal was found between MFMH and MFSH conditions in the fusiform face area (FFA) or between MFMH and SFMH conditions in the parahippocampal place area (PPA). When subjects attended to the static position, no significant difference in fMRI signal was found between SFSH and SFMH conditions in FFA, or between SFSH and MFSH conditions in PPA. In Experiment 2, subjects were randomly cued to attend to one location in a circular arc (the single cue condition) or to two locations in two different circular arcs (the double cue condition). These two different conditions showed no significant object-based attentional effect, i.e. activation was greater in regions representing uncued locations on the attended circular arc than regions representing equidistant locations on the unattended circular arcs, in human V1. These results provide direct evidence that object-based attention can select at least two objects that differ in either their features or locations simultaneously.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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