Apr 24, 2020

Representation of conscious percept without report in the macaque face patch network

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
J. K. Hesse, Doris Ying Tsao

Abstract

A powerful paradigm to identify the neural correlates of consciousness is binocular rivalry, wherein a constant visual stimulus evokes a varying conscious percept. It has recently been suggested that activity modulations observed during rivalry could represent the act of report rather than the conscious percept itself. Here, we performed single-unit recordings from face patches in macaque inferotemporal (IT) cortex using a no-report paradigm in which the animal's conscious percept was inferred from eye movements. We found high proportions of IT neurons represented the conscious percept even without active report. Population activity in single trials, measured using a new 128-site Neuropixels-like electrode, was more weakly modulated by rivalry than by physical stimulus transitions, but nevertheless allowed decoding of the changing conscious percept. These findings suggest that macaque face patches encode both the physical stimulus and the animal's conscious visual percept, and the latter encoding does not require active report.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Study
Decoding
Patterns
Classification
Heuristics
Functional Neuroimaging
Definition
Brain
Magnetoencephalography
Research Methodology

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