A Caltech Library Service

The geometry of domain-general performance monitoring representations in the human medial frontal cortex

Fu, Zhongzheng and Beam, Danielle and Chung, Jeffrey M. and Reed, Chrystal M. and Mamelak, Adam N. and Adolphs, Ralph and Rutishauser, Ueli (2021) The geometry of domain-general performance monitoring representations in the human medial frontal cortex. . (Unpublished)

[img] PDF - Submitted Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Flexibly adapting behavior to achieve a desired goal depends on the ability to monitor one’s own performance. A key open question is how performance monitoring can be both highly flexible to support multiple tasks and specialized to support specific tasks. We characterized performance monitoring representations by recording single neurons in the human medial frontal cortex (MFC). Subjects performed two tasks that involve three types of cognitive conflict. Neural population representations of conflict, error and control demand generalized across tasks and time while at the same time also encoding task specialization. This arose from a combination of single neurons whose responses were task-invariant and non-linearly mixed. Neurons encoding conflict ex-post served to iteratively update internal estimates of control demand as predicted by a Bayesian model. These findings reveal how the MFC representation of evaluative signals are both abstract and specific, suggesting a mechanism for computing and maintaining control demand estimates across trials and tasks.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Discussion Paper)
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Fu, Zhongzheng0000-0002-2572-6284
Reed, Chrystal M.0000-0002-7157-3645
Mamelak, Adam N.0000-0002-4245-6431
Adolphs, Ralph0000-0002-8053-9692
Rutishauser, Ueli0000-0002-9207-7069
Additional Information:The copyright holder for this preprint is the author/funder, who has granted bioRxiv a license to display the preprint in perpetuity. This version posted July 8, 2021. We thank the members of the Adolphs and Rutishauser labs and Lawrence J. Jin for discussion. We thank all subjects and their families for their participation and the staff of the Cedars-Sinai Epilepsy Monitoring Unit for their support. This work was supported by NIMH (R01MH110831 to U.R.), the NIMH Conte Center (P50MH094258 to R.A. and U.R.), the National Science Foundation (CAREER Award BCS-1554105), the BRAIN initiative through the NIH Office of the Director (U01NS117839), and the Simons Foundation Collaboration on the Global Brain (RA, ZF).
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Simons FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210712-164542451
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:The geometry of domain-general performance monitoring representations in the human medial frontal cortex. Zhongzheng Fu, Danielle Beam, Jeffrey M. Chung, Chrystal M. Reed, Adam N. Mamelak, Ralph Adolphs, Ueli Rutishauser. bioRxiv 2021.07.08.451594; doi:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:109777
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:12 Jul 2021 17:32
Last Modified:12 Jul 2021 17:32

Repository Staff Only: item control page