Prevalence of Selectivity for Mirror-Symmetric Views of Faces in the Ventral and Dorsal Visual Pathways

Autor(en): Kietzmann, Tim C.
Swisher, Jascha D.
Koenig, Peter 
Tong, Frank
Stichwörter: 3-DIMENSIONAL OBJECT RECOGNITION; COORDINATE SYSTEM; CORTICAL SURFACE; FACIAL IDENTITY; HUMAN EXTRASTRIATE CORTEX; INFERIOR TEMPORAL CORTEX; INFEROTEMPORAL CORTEX; Neurosciences; Neurosciences & Neurology; PATTERN-ANALYSIS; SURFACE-BASED ANALYSIS; UPSIDE-DOWN FACES
Erscheinungsdatum: 2012
Herausgeber: SOC NEUROSCIENCE
Journal: JOURNAL OF NEUROSCIENCE
Volumen: 32
Ausgabe: 34
Startseite: 11763
Seitenende: 11772
Zusammenfassung: 
Although the ability to recognize faces and objects from a variety of viewpoints is crucial to our everyday behavior, the underlying cortical mechanisms are not well understood. Recently, neurons in a face-selective region of the monkey temporal cortex were reported to be selective for mirror-symmetric viewing angles of faces as they were rotated in depth (Freiwald and Tsao, 2010). This property has been suggested to constitute a key computational step in achieving full view-invariance. Here, we measured functional magnetic resonance imaging activity in nine observers as they viewed upright or inverted faces presented at five different angles (-60, -30, 0, 30, and 60). Using multivariate pattern analysis, we show that sensitivity to viewpoint mirror symmetry is widespread in the human visual system. The effect was observed in a large band of higher order visual areas, including the occipital face area, fusiform face area, lateral occipital cortex, mid fusiform, parahippocampal place area, and extending superiorly to encompass dorsal regions V3A/B and the posterior intraparietal sulcus. In contrast, early retinotopic regions V1-hV4 failed to exhibit sensitivity to viewpoint symmetry, as their responses could be largely explained by a computational model of low-level visual similarity. Our findings suggest that selectivity for mirror-symmetric viewing angles may constitute an intermediate-level processing step shared across multiple higher order areas of the ventral and dorsal streams, setting the stage for complete viewpoint-invariant representations at subsequent levels of visual processing.
ISSN: 02706474
DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0126-12.2012

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