The team of researchers from the University of Münster, Germany, describes a model of brain function in which eye movement signals are used to boost the neural representation of objects located at the future eye position. This boost comes at the expense of a temporary loss of spatial accuracy. This research shows a direct correlation between visual perception and eye movement control.
Humans move their eyes 2-3 times a second without noticing. Each gaze shift triggers a host of internal brain processes with very delicate timing. The gaze shift is preceded by a brief shift of attention towards the new gaze target so that visual processing at the target area improves some 50 milliseconds before the eye itself looks at the target. This preceding improvement increases the sensitivity of visual neurons in many brain areas, which then respond more strongly to stimuli near the gaze target just prior to the gaze movement.
Using a detailed neuro-computational model of the representation of the visual world in cortical maps, the researchers investigated the consequences of these sensitivity changes to the perception of spatial location. Their results showed that objects presented just before the eye movement appear to lie at the gaze target rather than at their true spatial location, akin to a compression of visual space. Moreover, this model explains a peculiar finding that neurons in some brain areas appear to move their receptive field, i.e. the visual direction to which they respond, prior to eye movement. Analysis of the net effect of all receptive field changes in the model shows that the brain dynamically recruits cells for processing visual information around the target. This increase in processing capacity presumably allows one to perceive details of the object before looking at it, therefore making the world appear stable while we move our eyes.
This new model prompts many predictions that can guide experimental research – one step towards theory driven brain research. The model also paves the way to develop novel concepts for artificial vision systems.
Andrew Hyde | alfa
World’s Largest Study on Allergic Rhinitis Reveals new Risk Genes
17.07.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt
Plant mothers talk to their embryos via the hormone auxin
17.07.2018 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
17.07.2018 | Information Technology
17.07.2018 | Materials Sciences
17.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering