Taylor J C, Wiggett A J, Downing P E, 2009, "Viewpoint sensitivity of visual representations of the human body in the extrastriate cortex" Perception 38 ECVP Abstract Supplement, page 120
Viewpoint sensitivity of visual representations of the human body in the extrastriate cortex
J C Taylor, A J Wiggett, P E Downing
People are easily able to perceive the human body across changing viewpoints, but the neural mechanisms underpinning this ability are currently unclear. We used fMRI adaptation to study the view-invariance of representations in the extrastriate and fusiform body areas (EBA and FBA) cortical regions that have been shown to be sensitive to visual depictions of the human body. The BOLD response to sequentially-presented pairs of bodies was treated as an index of view invariance. Specifically, we compared trials in which the bodies in each image held identical poses (seen from the same or different views) to trials containing different poses EBA and FBA adapted to identical views of the same pose and both showed a progressive rebound from adaptation as a function of the angular difference between views, up to approximately 30 degrees. These effects were substantially reduced or eliminated by pattern masking. Furthermore, manipulation of the timing of the mask onset revealed different patterns of adaptation in EBA and FBA. Our results show that body selective cortical areas exhibit a similar degree of view-invariance as other object selective areas. They also indicate how view invariance in body representations develops over the first few hundred milliseconds following stimulus onset, remaining sensitive to disruption by masking in that period--a pattern of findings that is consistent with reentrant accounts of object representation.
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