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Dynamic Perceptual Changes in Audiovisual Simultaneity

Kanai, Ryota and Sheth, Bhavin R. and Verstraten, Frans A. J. and Shimojo, Shinsuke (2007) Dynamic Perceptual Changes in Audiovisual Simultaneity. PLOS ONE, 2 (12). Art. No. e1253. ISSN 1932-6203. PMCID PMC2092386. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0001253.

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Background: The timing at which sensory input reaches the level of conscious perception is an intriguing question still awaiting an answer. It is often assumed that both visual and auditory percepts have a modality specific processing delay and their difference determines perceptual temporal offset. Methodology/Principal Findings: Here, we show that the perception of audiovisual simultaneity can change flexibly and fluctuates over a short period of time while subjects observe a constant stimulus. We investigated the mechanisms underlying the spontaneous alternations in this audiovisual illusion and found that attention plays a crucial role. When attention was distracted from the stimulus, the perceptual transitions disappeared. When attention was directed to a visual event, the perceived timing of an auditory event was attracted towards that event. Conclusions/Significance: This multistable display illustrates how flexible perceived timing can be, and at the same time offers a paradigm to dissociate perceptual from stimulus-driven factors in crossmodal feature binding. Our findings suggest that the perception of crossmodal synchrony depends on perceptual binding of audiovisual stimuli as a common event.

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Additional Information:© 2007 Kanai et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Received: May 22, 2007; Accepted: November 7, 2007; Published: December 5, 2007. Academic Editor: Alex Holcombe, University of Sydney, Australia. The authors would like to thank David Alais, Charles Spence, Jordi Navarra and Daw-An Wu for their critical comments on the manuscript. Author Contributions: Conceived and designed the experiments: RK BS. Performed the experiments: RK. Analyzed the data: RK BS. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: SS FV. Wrote the paper: RK SS FV BS. Funding: This work was supported by Della Martin Fellowship (RK), by JST.ERATO (SS) and by NWO Pionier (FV). Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
Issue or Number:12
PubMed Central ID:PMC2092386
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:KANplosone07
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Official Citation:Kanai R, Sheth BR, Verstraten FAJ, Shimojo S (2007) Dynamic Perceptual Changes in Audiovisual Simultaneity. PLoS ONE 2(12): e1253. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0001253
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:9948
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:28 Mar 2008
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 21:03

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