Distraction and target selection in the brain: An fMRI study

E.G. Akyürek*, I. Vallines, E-J. Lin, A. Schubö

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To attend successfully, a specification of what is currently relevant is necessary, but not sufficient. Irrelevant stimuli that are also present in the environment must be recognized as such and filtered out at the same time. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we showed that posterior brain regions in parietal, occipital and temporal cortex are recruited in order to ignore distracting visual stimuli, while the specification and selection of relevant stimuli is associated with differential activity in frontal cortex and hippocampal areas instead. The results thus suggest that the selection of relevant objects can be anatomically dissociated from the handling of competing irrelevant objects. The dissociation between the increased involvement of parietal and occipital cortex in handling distraction on one hand, and that of frontal cortex in target specification on the other provides neurophysiological support for models of attention that make this functional distinction. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3335-3342
Number of pages8
JournalNeuropsychologia
Volume48
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep-2010

Keywords

  • Selection
  • Filtering
  • Distraction
  • Functional magnetic resonance imaging
  • Attention
  • CONTINGENT ATTENTIONAL CAPTURE
  • POSTERIOR PARIETAL CORTEX
  • VISUAL-ATTENTION
  • CEREBRAL-CORTEX
  • SEARCH
  • MECHANISMS
  • INTERFERENCE
  • DISSOCIATION
  • INVOLVEMENT
  • SPOTLIGHT

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