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Prior expectations evoke stimulus-specific activity in the deep layers of the primary visual cortex

Aitken, F; Menelaou, G; Warrington, O; Koolschijn, RS; Corbin, N; Callaghan, MF; Kok, P; (2020) Prior expectations evoke stimulus-specific activity in the deep layers of the primary visual cortex. PLOS Biology , 18 (12) , Article e3001023. 10.1371/journal.pbio.3001023. Green open access

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Abstract

The way we perceive the world is strongly influenced by our expectations. In line with this, much recent research has revealed that prior expectations strongly modulate sensory processing. However, the neural circuitry through which the brain integrates external sensory inputs with internal expectation signals remains unknown. In order to understand the computational architecture of the cortex, we need to investigate the way these signals flow through the cortical layers. This is crucial because the different cortical layers have distinct intra- and interregional connectivity patterns, and therefore determining which layers are involved in a cortical computation can inform us on the sources and targets of these signals. Here, we used ultra-high field (7T) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to reveal that prior expectations evoke stimulus-specific activity selectively in the deep layers of the primary visual cortex (V1). These findings are in line with predictive processing theories proposing that neurons in the deep cortical layers represent perceptual hypotheses and thereby shed light on the computational architecture of cortex.

Type: Article
Title: Prior expectations evoke stimulus-specific activity in the deep layers of the primary visual cortex
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.3001023
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.3001023
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2020 Aitken et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: Functional magnetic resonance imaging, Sensory perception, Visual cortex, Signal processing, Eyes, Oxygen, Sensory cues, Working memory
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10117435
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