Parallax-sensitive remapping of visual space in occipito-parietal alpha-band activity during whole-body motion
SourceJournal of Neurophysiology, 113, 5, (2015), pp. 1574-1584
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ DCC CO
Journal of Neurophysiology
SubjectAction, intention, and motor control; DI-BCB_DCC_Theme 2: Perception, Action and Control
Despite the constantly changing retinal image due to eye, head, and body movements, we are able to maintain a stable representation of the visual environment. Various studies on retinal image shifts caused by saccades have suggested that occipital and parietal areas correct for these perturbations by a gaze-centered remapping of the neural image. However, such a uniform, rotational, remapping mechanism cannot work during translations when objects shift on the retina in a more complex, depth-dependent fashion due to motion parallax. Here we tested whether the brain's activity patterns show parallax-sensitive remapping of remembered visual space during whole-body motion. Under continuous recording of electroencephalography (EEG), we passively translated human subjects while they had to remember the location of a world-fixed visual target, briefly presented in front of or behind the eyes' fixation point prior to the motion. Using a psychometric approach we assessed the quality of the memory update, which had to be made based on vestibular feedback and other extraretinal motion cues. All subjects showed a variable amount of parallax-sensitive updating errors, i.e., the direction of the errors depended on the depth of the target relative to fixation. The EEG recordings show a neural correlate of this parallax-sensitive remapping in the alpha-band power at occipito-parietal electrodes. At parietal electrodes, the strength of these alpha-band modulations correlated significantly with updating performance. These results suggest that alpha-band oscillatory activity reflects the time-varying updating of gaze-centered spatial information during parallax-sensitive remapping during whole-body motion.
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