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  The neural mechanisms of reliability weighted integration of shape information from vision and touch

Helbig, H., Ernst, M., Ricciardi, E., Pietrini P, Thielscher, A., Mayer, K., Schultz, J., et al. (2012). The neural mechanisms of reliability weighted integration of shape information from vision and touch. NeuroImage, 60(2), 1063–1072. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.09.072.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-B7E0-7 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-B7E1-5
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Helbig, HB1, 2, Author              
Ernst, MO2, Author              
Ricciardi, E3, Author              
Pietrini P, Thielscher, A4, Author              
Mayer, KM1, 2, Author              
Schultz, J1, Author              
Noppeney, U5, Author              
Affiliations:
1Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, escidoc:1497797              
2Research Group Multisensory Perception and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, escidoc:1497806              
3Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, escidoc:1497794              
4Department High-Field Magnetic Resonance, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, escidoc:1497796              
5Research Group Cognitive Neuroimaging, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society, escidoc:1497804              

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 Abstract: Behaviourally, humans have been shown to integrate multisensory information in a statistically-optimal fashion by averaging the individual unisensory estimates according to their relative reliabilities. This form of integration is optimal in that it yields the most reliable (i.e. least variable) multisensory percept. The present study investigates the neural mechanisms underlying integration of visual and tactile shape information at the macroscopic scale of the regional BOLD response. Observers discriminated the shapes of ellipses that were presented bimodally (visual-tactile) or visually alone. A 2×5 factorial design manipulated (i) the presence vs. absence of tactile shape information and (ii) the reliability of the visual shape information (five levels). We then investigated whether regional activations underlying tactile shape discrimination depended on the reliability of visual shape. Indeed, in primary somatosensory cortices (bilateral BA2) and the superior parietal lobe the responses to tactile shape input were increased when the reliability of visual shape information was reduced. Conversely, tactile inputs suppressed visual activations in the right posterior fusiform, when the visual signal was blurred and unreliable. Somatosensory and visual cortices may sustain integration of visual and tactile shape information either via direct connections from visual areas or top-down effects from higher order parietal areas.

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 Dates: 2012-04
 Publication Status: Published in print
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Title: NeuroImage
Source Genre: Journal
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: 60 (2) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 1063–1072 Identifier: -