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Transcranial magnetic stimulation of right inferior parietal cortex causally influences prefrontal activation for visual detection

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Leitão,  J
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Cognitive Neuroimaging, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Thielscher,  A
Department High-Field Magnetic Resonance, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Lee,  HL
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Cognitive Neuroimaging, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Tuennerhoff,  J
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Cognitive Neuroimaging, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Noppeney,  U
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Cognitive Neuroimaging, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Leitão, J., Thielscher, A., Lee, H., Tuennerhoff, J., & Noppeney, U. (2017). Transcranial magnetic stimulation of right inferior parietal cortex causally influences prefrontal activation for visual detection. European Journal of Neuroscience, 46(12), 2807-2816. doi:10.1111/ejn.13743.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0000-C278-E
Abstract
For effective interactions with the environment the brain needs to form perceptual decisions based on noisy sensory evidence. Accumulating evidence suggests that perceptual decisions are formed by widespread interactions amongst sensory areas representing the noisy sensory evidence and fronto-parietal areas integrating the evidence into a decision variable that is compared to a decisional threshold. This concurrent transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)-fMRI study applied 10 Hz bursts of four TMS (or Sham) pulses to the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) to investigate the causal influence of IPS on the neural systems involved in perceptual decision making. Participants had to detect visual signals at threshold intensity that were presented in their left lower visual field on 50 of the trials. Critically, we adjusted the signal strength such that participants failed to detect the visual stimulus on approximately 30 of the trials allowing us to categorize trials into hits, misses and correct rejections. Our results show that IPS- relative to Sham-TMS attenuated activation increases for misses relative to correct rejections in the left middle and superior frontal gyri. Critically, while IPS-TMS did not significantly affect participants’ performance accuracy, it affected how observers adjusted their response times after making an error. We therefore suggest that activation increases in superior frontal gyri for misses relative to correct responses may not be critical for signal detection performance, but rather reflect post-decisional processing such as metacognitive monitoring of choice accuracy or decisional confidence.