CaltechAUTHORS
  A Caltech Library Service

Contextual-Dependent Attention Effect on Crowded Orientation Signals in Human Visual Cortex

Chen, Nihong and Bao, Pinglei and Tjan, Bosco S. (2018) Contextual-Dependent Attention Effect on Crowded Orientation Signals in Human Visual Cortex. Journal of Neuroscience, 38 (39). pp. 8433-8440. ISSN 0270-6474. PMCID PMC6158691. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20181011-122734491

[img] PDF - Published Version
Creative Commons Attribution.

588Kb
[img] MS Word (Figure 2-1) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

12Kb
[img] Postscript (Figure 2-2) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

816Kb
[img] MS Word (Figure 4-1) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

12Kb
[img] Postscript (Figure 4-2) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

799Kb
[img] MS Word (Figure 6-1) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

30Kb
[img] MS Word (Figure 6-2) - Supplemental Material
Creative Commons Attribution.

30Kb

Use this Persistent URL to link to this item: https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20181011-122734491

Abstract

A target becomes hard to identify with nearby visual stimuli. This phenomenon, known as crowding, places a fundamental limit on conscious perception and object recognition. To understand the neural representation of crowded stimuli, we used fMRI and a forward encoding model to reconstruct the target-specific feature from multivoxel activation patterns evoked by orientation patches. Orientation-selective response profiles were constructed in V1–V4 for a target embedded in different contexts. Subjects of both sexes either directed their attention over all the orientation patches or selectively to the target. In the context with a weak crowding effect, attending to the target enhanced the orientation selectivity of the response profile; such effect increased along the visual pathway. In the context with a strong crowding effect, attending to the target enhanced the orientation selectivity of the response profile in the earlier visual area, but not in V4. The increase and decrease of orientation selectivity along the visual hierarchy demonstrate a contextual-dependent attention effect on crowded orientation signals: in the context with a weak crowding effect, selective attention gradually resolves the target from nearby distractors along the hierarchy; in the context with a strong crowding effect, while selective attention maintains the target feature in the earlier visual area, its effect decreases in the downstream area. Our findings reveal how the human visual system represents the target-specific feature at multiple stages under the limit of attention selection in a cluttered scene.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0805-18.2018DOIArticle
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6158691/PubMed CentralArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Chen, Nihong0000-0002-0890-3875
Bao, Pinglei0000-0001-6643-2904
Additional Information:© 2018 the authors. Beginning six months after publication the Work will be made freely available to the public on SfN’s website to copy, distribute, or display under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Received March 27, 2018; revised Aug. 3, 2018; accepted Aug. 7, 2018. This work was supported by National Institutes of Health R01-EY017707. This paper is dedicated to Prof. Bosco Tjan, who passed away due to a tragic incident on December 2, 2016. We thank Fang Fang, Christopher Baker, Zhong-Lin Lu, and Xiu Yang for helpful discussions and feedback on early versions of the manuscript. The authors declare no competing financial interests. Author contributions: N.C. wrote the first draft of the paper; N.C. and P.B. edited the paper; N.C. and B.S.T. designed research; N.C. and B.S.T. performed research; N.C., P.B., and B.S.T. analyzed data; N.C. wrote the paper.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIHR01-EY017707
Subject Keywords:attention; consciousness; crowding; fMRI; object recognition; visual cortex
Issue or Number:39
PubMed Central ID:PMC6158691
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20181011-122734491
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20181011-122734491
Official Citation:Contextual-Dependent Attention Effect on Crowded Orientation Signals in Human Visual Cortex. Nihong Chen, Pinglei Bao, Bosco S. Tjan. Journal of Neuroscience 26 September 2018, 38 (39) 8433-8440; DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0805-18.2018
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:90246
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:11 Oct 2018 20:14
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:18

Repository Staff Only: item control page