In a paper recently published in Cortex Issue 6, Sackur and colleagues reported that unconscious processing in hemineglect is not limited to low level features of the stimuli.
They showed that the brain may extract the meaning of symbols that the patient has not consciously perceived. Thus, digits or number words presented on the left side were not detected by hemineglect patients, but still their numerical value influenced the way these patients performed on a numerical task presented shortly thereafter.
Until now, few studies have directly addressed the issue of the unconscious access to semantics. Sackur and colleagues engaged four patients with unilateral left spatial neglect in a number comparison task. Each target number was preceded by a lateralized number prime, either in the intact or neglected hemifield (HF).
Both group analyses and the intensive study of a single patient show that left (neglected) as well as right (consciously perceived) number primes affect performance: primes representing quantities that fall on the same side of the reference as the target lead to faster categorization. This congruency effect is highly suggestive of numerical semantic processing of neglected stimuli. Absence of conscious perception of neglected primes was evaluated using a combination of subjective and objective measures of performance in forced-choice tasks.
This study demonstrates that in hemineglect the left part of the world is not a 'blind' region: in a way, patients read unconsciously what is there. However, the patients cannot make conscious use of this information.
Jerome Sackur | alfa
Routing gene therapy directly into the brain
07.12.2017 | Boston Children's Hospital
New Hope for Cancer Therapies: Targeted Monitoring may help Improve Tumor Treatment
01.12.2017 | Berliner Institut für Gesundheitsforschung / Berlin Institute of Health (BIH)
MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...
Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong
Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
12.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
12.12.2017 | Earth Sciences
12.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering