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Presaccadic EEG activity predicts visual saliency in free-viewing contour integration

Van Humbeeck, Nathalie ; Meghanathan, Radha Nila ; Wagemans, Johan ; van Leeuwen, Cees and Nikolaev, Andrey R LU (2018) In Psychophysiology 55(12). p.13267-13267
Abstract

While viewing a scene, the eyes are attracted to salient stimuli. We set out to identify the brain signals controlling this process. In a contour integration task, in which participants searched for a collinear contour in a field of randomly oriented Gabor elements, a previously established model was applied to calculate a visual saliency value for each fixation location. We studied brain activity related to the modeled saliency values, using coregistered eye tracking and EEG. To disentangle EEG signals reflecting salience in free viewing from overlapping EEG responses to sequential eye movements, we adopted generalized additive mixed modeling (GAMM) to single epochs of saccade-related EEG. We found that, when saliency at the next... (More)

While viewing a scene, the eyes are attracted to salient stimuli. We set out to identify the brain signals controlling this process. In a contour integration task, in which participants searched for a collinear contour in a field of randomly oriented Gabor elements, a previously established model was applied to calculate a visual saliency value for each fixation location. We studied brain activity related to the modeled saliency values, using coregistered eye tracking and EEG. To disentangle EEG signals reflecting salience in free viewing from overlapping EEG responses to sequential eye movements, we adopted generalized additive mixed modeling (GAMM) to single epochs of saccade-related EEG. We found that, when saliency at the next fixation location was high, amplitude of the presaccadic EEG activity was low. Since presaccadic activity reflects covert attention to the saccade target, our results indicate that larger attentional effort is needed for selecting less salient saccade targets than more salient ones. This effect was prominent in contour-present conditions (half of the trials), but ambiguous in the contour-absent condition. Presaccadic EEG activity may thus be indicative of bottom-up factors in saccade guidance. The results underscore the utility of GAMM for EEG-eye movement coregistration research.

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author
publishing date
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Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Adolescent, Adult, Attention/physiology, Brain/physiology, Electroencephalography, Eye Movement Measurements, Female, Fixation, Ocular, Form Perception/physiology, Humans, Male, Photic Stimulation, Saccades, Young Adult
in
Psychophysiology
volume
55
issue
12
pages
13267 - 13267
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • scopus:85053024575
  • pmid:30069911
ISSN
0048-5772
DOI
10.1111/psyp.13267
language
English
LU publication?
no
additional info
© 2018 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
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fb41989a-f59b-43c6-9295-8d1795157914
date added to LUP
2019-10-21 19:25:21
date last changed
2019-12-10 08:16:02
@article{fb41989a-f59b-43c6-9295-8d1795157914,
  abstract     = {<p>While viewing a scene, the eyes are attracted to salient stimuli. We set out to identify the brain signals controlling this process. In a contour integration task, in which participants searched for a collinear contour in a field of randomly oriented Gabor elements, a previously established model was applied to calculate a visual saliency value for each fixation location. We studied brain activity related to the modeled saliency values, using coregistered eye tracking and EEG. To disentangle EEG signals reflecting salience in free viewing from overlapping EEG responses to sequential eye movements, we adopted generalized additive mixed modeling (GAMM) to single epochs of saccade-related EEG. We found that, when saliency at the next fixation location was high, amplitude of the presaccadic EEG activity was low. Since presaccadic activity reflects covert attention to the saccade target, our results indicate that larger attentional effort is needed for selecting less salient saccade targets than more salient ones. This effect was prominent in contour-present conditions (half of the trials), but ambiguous in the contour-absent condition. Presaccadic EEG activity may thus be indicative of bottom-up factors in saccade guidance. The results underscore the utility of GAMM for EEG-eye movement coregistration research.</p>},
  author       = {Van Humbeeck, Nathalie and Meghanathan, Radha Nila and Wagemans, Johan and van Leeuwen, Cees and Nikolaev, Andrey R},
  issn         = {0048-5772},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {12},
  pages        = {13267--13267},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Psychophysiology},
  title        = {Presaccadic EEG activity predicts visual saliency in free-viewing contour integration},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/psyp.13267},
  doi          = {10.1111/psyp.13267},
  volume       = {55},
  year         = {2018},
}