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See detailAttentional shifts induced by uninformative number symbols modulate neural activity in human occipital cortex
Goffaux, Valérie; Martin, Romain UL; Dormal, Giulia et al

in Neuropsychologia (2012), 50

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to ... [more ▼]

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to different target locations according to the number magnitude, i.e., small/large numbers facilitate processing of left/right targets, respectively. The brain architecture dedicated to these attention shifts associated with numbers remains unknown. Evoked potential recordings indicate that both early and late stages are involved in this spatio-numerical interaction, but the neuro-functional anatomy needs to be specified. Here we use, for the first time, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate attentional orienting following uninformative Arabic digits. We show that BOLD response in occipital visual regions is modulated by the congruency between digit magnitude (small/large) and target side (left/right). Additionally, we report higher BOLD responses following large (8, 9) compared to small (1, 2) digits in two bilateral parietal regions, yielding a significant effect of digit magnitude. We propose and discuss the view that encoding of semantic representations related to number symbols in parietal cortex leads to shifts in visuo-spatial attention and enhances visual processing in the occipital cortex according to number-space congruency rules. [less ▲]

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Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailAttentional shifts induced by uninformative number symbols modulate neural activity in human occipital cortex
Goffaux, Valerie; Martin, Romain UL; Dormal, Giulia et al

in Neuropsychologia (2012), 50

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to ... [more ▼]

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to different target locations according to the number magnitude, i.e., small/large numbers facilitate processing of left/right targets, respectively. The brain architecture dedicated to these attention shifts associated with numbers currently remains unknown. Evoked potential recordings indicate that both early and late stages are involved in this spatio-numerical interaction, but the neuro-functional anatomy needs to be specified. Here we use, for the first time, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate attentional orienting following uninformative Arabic digits. We show that BOLD response in occipital visual regions was modulated by the congruency between digit magnitude (small/large) and target side (left/right). Additionally, we report higher BOLD responses following large (8, 9) compared to small (1, 2) digits in two bilateral parietal regions, yielding a significant effect of digit magnitude. We propose and discuss the view that encoding of semantic representations related to number symbols in parietal cortex led to shifts in visuo-spatial attention and enhanced visual processing in the occipital cortex according to number-space congruency rules. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 81 (5 UL)
See detailAttentional shifts induced by uninformative number symbols modulate neural activity in human occipital cortex
Schiltz, Christine UL; Goffaux, Valérie; Martin, Romain UL et al

Presentation (2012, July 17)

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to ... [more ▼]

Number processing interacts with space encoding in a wide variety of experimental paradigms. Most intriguingly, the passive viewing of uninformative number symbols can shift visuo-spatial attention to different target locations according to the number magnitude, i.e. small/large numbers facilitate processing of left/right targets, respectively. The brain architecture dedicated to these attention shifts associated with numbers currently remains unknown. Evoked potential recordings indicate that both early and late stages are involved in this spatio-numerical interaction, but the neuro-functional anatomy needs to be specified. Here we use, for the first time, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate attentional orienting following uninformative Arabic digits. We show that BOLD response in occipital visual regions was modulated by the congruency between digit magnitude (small/large) and target side (left/right). Additionally, we report higher BOLD responses following large (8, 9) compared to small (1, 2) digits in two bilateral parietal regions, yielding a significant effect of digit magnitude. We propose and discuss the view that automatic encoding of semantic representations related to number symbols in parietal cortex lead to shifts in visuo-spatial attention and enhanced visual processing in the occipital cortex according to number-space congruency rules. [less ▲]

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See detailAttentional shifts due to irrelevant numerical cues: Behavioral investigation of a lateralized target discrimination paradigm
Schiltz, Christine UL; Dormal, Giulia; Martin, Romain UL et al

in Journal of Vision (2010), 10(7),

Behavioural evidence indicates the existence of a link between numerical representations and visuo-spatial processes. A striking demonstration of this link was provided by Fischer and colleagues (2003 ... [more ▼]

Behavioural evidence indicates the existence of a link between numerical representations and visuo-spatial processes. A striking demonstration of this link was provided by Fischer and colleagues (2003), who reported that participants detect a target more rapidly in the left hemifield, if it is preceded by a small number (e.g. 2 or 3) and more rapidly in the right hemifield if preceded by a large number (e.g. 8 or 9). This is strong evidence that numbers orient visuo-spatial attention to different visual hemifields (e.g., left and right) depending on their magnitude (e.g., small and large, respectively). Here, we sought to replicate number-related attentional shifts using a discrimination task. The participants (n=16) were presented 1 digit (1,2 vs. 8,9) at the centre of the screen for 400ms. After 500ms, 1000ms or 2000ms, a target was briefly flashed in either the right or left hemifield and participants had to report its colour (red or green). They were told that the central digit was irrelevant to the task. We hypothesized that the attentional shift induced by the centrally presented numbers should induce congruency effects for the target discrimination task, so that small (or large) numbers would facilitate the processing of left (or right) targets. Our results confirmed this prediction, but only for the shortest digit-target interval (500ms). This is supported by a significant interaction between number magnitude (small/large) and target hemifield (left/right). The link between numerical and spatial representations further predicts a positive relation between number magnitude and the difference in RT between left and right targets. Regression slopes were computed individually and a positive slope was obtained for short number-target interval. These findings indicate that the attentional shifts induced by irrelevant numerical material are independent of the exact nature of target processing (discrimination vs. detection). [less ▲]

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