August 2023
Volume 23, Issue 9
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2023
Probing the neural plasticity of space- and object-based attentional processing in childhood hemispherectomy
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Sophia Robert
    Carnegie Mellon University
  • Michael C. Granovetter
    Carnegie Mellon University
    University of Pittsburgh
  • Marlene Behrmann
    University of Pittsburgh
    Carnegie Mellon University
  • Footnotes
    Acknowledgements  This research was supported by a P30 CORE award (EY08098) from the National Eye Institute, NIH, and unrestricted supporting funds from The Research to Prevent Blindness Inc, NY, and the Eye & Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh awarded to MB, as well as the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship awarded to SR.
Journal of Vision August 2023, Vol.23, 5686. doi:
  • Views
  • Share
  • Tools
    • Alerts
      This feature is available to authenticated users only.
      Sign In or Create an Account ×
    • Get Citation

      Sophia Robert, Michael C. Granovetter, Marlene Behrmann; Probing the neural plasticity of space- and object-based attentional processing in childhood hemispherectomy. Journal of Vision 2023;23(9):5686.

      Download citation file:

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

  • Supplements

Observers deploy covert attention as a means of winnowing the complexity of visual scenes into manageable input that can be processed efficiently. The well-established ‘two rectangle paradigm’ has been widely used to characterize space- and object-based attention, associated with highlighting a particular spatial position or a particular object, respectively (Egly et al., 1994). Neuroimaging and neuropsychological studies have ascribed space-based attention predominantly to the fronto-parietal network in the right hemisphere (RH; e.g., Schotten et al., 2011) and object-based attention primarily to the left hemisphere (LH; e.g., Orlandi & Proverbio, 2019). Here, we address whether this hemispheric asymmetry is a fixed property of the RH versus LH or is amenable to functional reorganization in individuals who have only a single hemisphere. 23 participants with childhood hemispherectomy (9 with preserved LH and 14 with preserved RH) for the management of drug-resistant epilepsy, completed a modified, age-appropriate two-rectangle paradigm (“Help Doug the dog figure out the color of the missing ball”), comprised of 70% valid trials (cue and target in same location), 10% invalid space (cue and target at same end of two different rectangles), 10% invalid object (cue and target at different ends of the same rectangle) and 10% neutral trials (four rectangle ends cued, target position random). Both patient groups performed significantly better for the valid than other conditions on both accuracy and reaction time measures, which did not differ from each other. Interestingly, there was no main effect of patient group (side of resection). These surprising results indicate that either hemisphere can mediate both types of attention without hemisphere-specific advantages after loss of an entire hemisphere, perhaps reflecting plasticity and functional reorganization in childhood.


This PDF is available to Subscribers Only

Sign in or purchase a subscription to access this content. ×

You must be signed into an individual account to use this feature.