Document Detail

Lower-level stimulus features strongly influence responses in the fusiform face area.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20375074     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
An intriguing region of human visual cortex (the fusiform face area; FFA) responds selectively to faces as a general higher-order stimulus category. However, the potential role of lower-order stimulus properties in FFA remains incompletely understood. To clarify those lower-level influences, we measured FFA responses to independent variation in 4 lower-level stimulus dimensions using standardized face stimuli and functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). These dimensions were size, position, contrast, and rotation in depth (viewpoint). We found that FFA responses were strongly influenced by variations in each of these image dimensions; that is, FFA responses were not "invariant" to any of them. Moreover, all FFA response functions were highly correlated with V1 responses (r = 0.95-0.99). As in V1, FFA responses could be accurately modeled as a combination of responses to 1) local contrast plus 2) the cortical magnification factor. In some measurements (e.g., face size or a combinations of multiple cues), the lower-level variations dominated the range of FFA responses. Manipulation of lower-level stimulus parameters could even change the category preference of FFA from "face selective" to "object selective." Altogether, these results emphasize that a significant portion of the FFA response reflects lower-level visual responses.
Xiaomin Yue; Brittany S Cassidy; Kathryn J Devaney; Daphne J Holt; Roger B H Tootell
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2010-04-07
Journal Detail:
Title:  Cerebral cortex (New York, N.Y. : 1991)     Volume:  21     ISSN:  1460-2199     ISO Abbreviation:  Cereb. Cortex     Publication Date:  2011 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-12-14     Completed Date:  2011-11-14     Revised Date:  2014-09-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9110718     Medline TA:  Cereb Cortex     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  35-47     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Neuropsychological Tests / standards
Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology*
Photic Stimulation / methods*
Temporal Lobe / anatomy & histology,  physiology*
Visual Cortex / anatomy & histology,  physiology*
Visual Perception / physiology*
Grant Support

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