Apr 29, 2016

Reduced spatial integration in the ventral visual cortex underlies face recognition deficits in developmental prosopagnosia

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Nathaniel WitthoftKalanit Grill-Spector

Abstract

Developmental prosopagnosia (DP) is characterized by deficits in face recognition without gross brain abnormalities. However, the neural basis of DP is not well understood. We measured population receptive fields (pRFs) in ventral visual cortex of DPs and typical adults to assess the contribution of spatial integration to face processing. While DPs showed typical retinotopic organization of ventral visual cortex and normal pRF sizes in early visual areas, we found significantly reduced pRF sizes in face-selective regions and in intermediate areas hV4 and VO1. Across both typicals and DPs, face recognition ability correlated positively with pRF size in both face-selective regions and VO1, whereby participants with larger pRFs perform better. However, face recognition ability is correlated with both pRF size and ROI volume only in face-selective regions. These findings suggest that smaller pRF sizes in DP may reflect a deficit in spatial integration affecting holistic processing required for face recognition.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Size
Intermediate
Spatial Distribution
Brain
Face
Region of Face
Developmental Therapeutics Program
Participant
Ephb4 protein, mouse
Dipyridamole

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