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Rhythmic Sampling within and between Objects despite Sustained Attention at a Cued Location

Author(s): Fiebelkorn, Ian C.; Saalmann, Yuri B.; Kastner, Sabine

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Abstract: The brain directs its limited processing resources through various selection mechanisms, broadly referred to as attention. The present study investigated the temporal dynamics of two such selection mechanisms: space- and object-based selection. Previous evidence has demonstrated that preferential processing resulting from a spatial cue (i.e., space-based selection) spreads to uncued locations, if those locations are part of the same object (i.e., resulting in object-based selection). But little is known about the relationship between these fundamental selection mechanisms. Here, we used human behavioral data to determine how space- and object-based selection simultaneously evolve under conditions that promote sustained attention at a cued location, varying the cue-to-target interval from 300—1100 ms. We tracked visual-target detection at a cued location (i.e., space-based selection), at an uncued location that was part of the same object (i.e., object-based selection), and at an uncued location that was part of a different object (i.e., in the absence of space- and object-based selection). The data demonstrate that even under static conditions, there is a moment-to-moment reweighting of attentional priorities based on object properties. This reweighting is revealed through rhythmic patterns of visual-target detection both within (at 8 Hz) and between (at 4 Hz) objects.
Publication Date: Dec-2013
Citation: Fiebelkorn, Ian C., Saalmann, Yuri B., Kastner, Sabine. (2013). Rhythmic Sampling within and between Objects despite Sustained Attention at a Cued Location. Current Biology, 23 (24), 2553 - 2558. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2013.10.063
DOI: doi:10.1016/j.cub.2013.10.063
ISSN: 0960-9822
Pages: 2553 - 2558
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Current Biology
Version: Author's manuscript

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