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A brain-derived metric for preferred kinetic stimuli

Zeki, S; Stutters, J; (2012) A brain-derived metric for preferred kinetic stimuli. Open Biology , 2 , Article 120001. 10.1098/rsob.120001. Green open access

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Abstract

We here address the question of whether there is any correlation between subjective preference for simple configurations within a specific visual domain such as motion and strength of activity in visual areas in which that domain is emphasized. We prepared several distinctive patterns of dots in motion with various characteristics and asked humans to rate them according to their preference, before and while scanning the activity in their brains with functional magnetic resonance imaging. For simplicity, we restricted ourselves to motion in the fronto-parallel plane. Moving patterns produced activity in areas V1, V2, the V3 complex (V3, V3A, V3B) and V5, but only in areas V5, V3A/B and parietal cortex did the preferred kinetic patterns produce stronger activity when compared with the non-preferred ones. In addition, preferred patterns produced activity within field A1 of medial orbito-frontal cortex (mOFC), which is not otherwise activated by kinetic stimuli. Hence, for these areas, stronger neural activity correlated with subjective preference. We conclude that configurations of kinetic stimuli that are subjectively preferred correlate with stronger activity within early visual areas and within mOFC. This opens up the possibility of more detailed studies to relate subjective preferences to strength of activity in early visual areas and to relate activity in them to areas whose activity correlates with the subjective experience of beauty.

Type: Article
Title: A brain-derived metric for preferred kinetic stimuli
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1098/rsob.120001
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsob.120001
Language: English
Additional information: © 2012 The Authors. Published by the Royal Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/, which permits unrestricted use, provided the original author and source are credited.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
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 > Neuroinflammation
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Cell and Developmental Biology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1362868
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