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Response repetition biases in human perceptual decisions are explained by activity decay in competitive attractor models

Bonaiuto, JJ; De Berker, AO; Bestmann, S; (2016) Response repetition biases in human perceptual decisions are explained by activity decay in competitive attractor models. eLife , 5 , Article e20047. 10.7554/eLife.20047. Green open access

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Abstract

Animals and humans have a tendency to repeat recent choices, a phenomenon known as choice hysteresis. The mechanism for this choice bias remains unclear. Using an established, biophysically informed model of a competitive attractor network for decision making, we found that decaying tail activity from the previous trial caused choice hysteresis, especially during difficult trials, and accurately predicted human perceptual choices. In the model, choice variability could be directionally altered through amplification or dampening of post-trial activity decay through simulated depolarizing or hyperpolarizing network stimulation. An analogous intervention using transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) over left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) yielded a close match between model predictions and experimental results: net soma depolarizing currents increased choice hysteresis, while hyperpolarizing currents suppressed it. Residual activity in competitive attractor networks within dlPFC may thus give rise to biases in perceptual choices, which can be directionally controlled through non-invasive brain stimulation.

Type: Article
Title: Response repetition biases in human perceptual decisions are explained by activity decay in competitive attractor models
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.7554/eLife.20047
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20047
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright Bonaiuto et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: Neuroscience, choice hysteresis, choice variability, computational neurostimulation, dlPFC, Human, perceptual decision making, tDCS
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 > Clinical and Movement Neurosciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1534911
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