+ Site Statistics
References:
52,654,530
Abstracts:
29,560,856
PMIDs:
28,072,755
+ Search Articles
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ PDF Full Text
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

Enhanced attentional gain as a mechanism for generalized perceptual learning in human visual cortex



Enhanced attentional gain as a mechanism for generalized perceptual learning in human visual cortex



Journal of Neurophysiology 112(5): 1217-1227



Learning to better discriminate a specific visual feature (i.e., a specific orientation in a specific region of space) has been associated with plasticity in early visual areas (sensory modulation) and with improvements in the transmission of sensory information from early visual areas to downstream sensorimotor and decision regions (enhanced readout). However, in many real-world scenarios that require perceptual expertise, observers need to efficiently process numerous exemplars from a broad stimulus class as opposed to just a single stimulus feature. Some previous data suggest that perceptual learning leads to highly specific neural modulations that support the discrimination of specific trained features. However, the extent to which perceptual learning acts to improve the discriminability of a broad class of stimuli via the modulation of sensory responses in human visual cortex remains largely unknown. Here, we used functional MRI and a multivariate analysis method to reconstruct orientation-selective response profiles based on activation patterns in the early visual cortex before and after subjects learned to discriminate small offsets in a set of grating stimuli that were rendered in one of nine possible orientations. Behavioral performance improved across 10 training sessions, and there was a training-related increase in the amplitude of orientation-selective response profiles in V1, V2, and V3 when orientation was task relevant compared with when it was task irrelevant. These results suggest that generalized perceptual learning can lead to modified responses in the early visual cortex in a manner that is suitable for supporting improved discriminability of stimuli drawn from a large set of exemplars.

(PDF emailed within 0-6 h: $19.90)

Accession: 052982238

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 24920023

DOI: 10.1152/jn.00353.2014


Related references

Attentional modulation in visual cortex is modified during perceptual learning. Neuropsychologia 49(14): 3898-3907, 2012

Attentional modulation of perceptual grouping in human visual cortex: ERP studies. Human Brain Mapping 26(3): 199-209, 2005

Attentional modulation of perceptual grouping in human visual cortex: functional MRI studies. Human Brain Mapping 25(4): 424-432, 2005

Effects of attention on perceptual learning of shapes in the human visual cortex. Society for Neuroscience Abstract Viewer & Itinerary Planner : Abstract No 126 5, 2003

The role of perceptual learning on modality-specific visual attentional effects. Vision Research 47(1): 60-70, 2006

Neural "ignition": enhanced activation linked to perceptual awareness in human ventral stream visual cortex. Neuron 64(4): 562-574, 2009

Visual perceptual learning induces long-term potentiation in the visual cortex. Neuroscience 172: 219-225, 2011

A common neuronal code for perceptual visual cortex? Comparing choice and processes in attentional correlates in V5/MT. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B Biological Sciences 359(1446): 929-941, June 29, 2004

A common neuronal code for perceptual processes in visual cortex? Comparing choice and attentional correlates in V5/MT. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences 359(1446): 929-941, 2004

Mechanisms of visual perceptual learning in macaque visual cortex. Topics in Cognitive Science 2(2): 239-250, 2015

Specificity of auditory-guided visual perceptual learning suggests crossmodal plasticity in early visual cortex. Experimental Brain Research 198(2-3): 353-361, 2009

Attentional changes in human perceptual learning. Behavioural Processes 98: 61-68, 2014

A Mouse Model of Visual Perceptual Learning Reveals Alterations in Neuronal Coding and Dendritic Spine Density in the Visual Cortex. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience 10: 42-42, 2016

Perceptual learning and dynamic changes in primary visual cortex. Neuron 57(6): 799-801, 2008

Magnetic stimulation of visual cortex impairs perceptual learning. Neuroimage 143(): 250-255, 2016