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  Task-dependent enhancement of facial expression and identity representations in human cortex

Dobs, K., Schultz, J., Bülthoff, I., & Gardner, J. (2018). Task-dependent enhancement of facial expression and identity representations in human cortex. NeuroImage, 172, 689-702. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.02.013.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-7CB9-4 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-7F85-B
Genre: Journal Article

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Dobs, K1, 2, 3, Author              
Schultz, J2, 3, Author              
Bülthoff, I1, 2, 3, Author              
Gardner, JL, Author
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1Project group: Recognition & Categorization, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, ou_2528707              
2Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, ou_1497797              
3Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, ou_1497794              

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 Abstract: What cortical mechanisms allow humans to easily discern the expression or identity of a face? Subjects detected changes in expression or identity of a stream of dynamic faces while we measured BOLD responses from topographically and functionally defined areas throughout the visual hierarchy. Responses in dorsal areas increased during the expression task, whereas responses in ventral areas increased during the identity task, consistent with previous studies. Similar to ventral areas, early visual areas showed increased activity during the identity task. If visual responses are weighted by perceptual mechanisms according to their magnitude, these increased responses would lead to improved attentional selection of the task-appropriate facial aspect. Alternatively, increased responses could be a signature of a sensitivity enhancement mechanism that improves representations of the attended facial aspect. Consistent with the latter sensitivity enhancement mechanism, attending to expression led to enhanced decoding of exemplars of expression both in early visual and dorsal areas relative to attending identity. Similarly, decoding identity exemplars when attending to identity was improved in dorsal and ventral areas. We conclude that attending to expression or identity of dynamic faces is associated with increased selectivity in representations consistent with sensitivity enhancement.

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 Dates: 2018-05
 Publication Status: Published in print
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 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.02.013
BibTex Citekey: DobsSBG2017
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Title: NeuroImage
Source Genre: Journal
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: 172 Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 689 - 702 Identifier: -