The benefit of object interactions arises in the lateral occipital cortex independent of attentional modulation from the intraparietal sulcus: A transcranial magnetic stimulation study

Jiye G. Kim, Irving Biederman, Chi Hung Juan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Our visual experience is generally not of isolated objects, but of scenes, where multiple objects are interacting. Such interactions (e.g., a watering can positioned to pour water toward a plant) have been shown to facilitate object identification compared with when the objects are depicted as not interacting (e.g., a watering can positioned away from the plant) (Green and Hummel, 2004, 2006). What is the neural basis for this advantage? Recent fMRI studies have identified the lateral occipital cortex (LO) as a potential neural origin of this behavioral benefit, as LO showed greater responses to object pairs depicted as interacting compared with when they are not (Kim and Biederman, 2010; Roberts and Humphreys, 2010). However, it is possible that LO was modulated by an attention-sensitive region, the intraparietal sulcus (IPS), which sometimes showed a similar pattern of responses as that of LO in the Kim and Biederman (2010) investigation. To test this hypothesis, we delivered transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to human subjects' LO and IPS while they detected a target object that was or was not interacting with another object to form a scene. TMS delivered to LO but not IPS abolished the facilitation in identifying interacting objects compared with noninteracting depictions observed in the absence of TMS, suggesting that it is LO and not IPS that is critical for the coding of object interactions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8320-8324
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume31
Issue number22
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2011

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