Top down influence on visuo-tactile interaction modulates neural oscillatory responses
Kanayama, N., Tamè, L., Ohira, H. and Pavani, F. (2012) Top down influence on visuo-tactile interaction modulates neural oscillatory responses. NeuroImage, 59 (4). pp. 3406-3417. ISSN 1053-8119
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.11.076
Multisensory integration involves bottom-up as well as top-down processes. We investigated the influences of top-down control on the neural responses to multisensory stimulation using EEG recording and time-frequency analyses. Participants were stimulated at the index or thumb of the left hand, using tactile vibrators mounted on a foam cube. Simultaneously they received a visual distractor from a light emitting diode adjacent to the active vibrator (spatially congruent trial) or adjacent to the inactive vibrator (spatially incongruent trial). The task was to respond to the elevation of the tactile stimulus (upper or lower), while ignoring the simultaneous visual distractor. To manipulate top-down control on this multisensory stimulation, the proportion of spatially congruent (vs. incongruent) trials was changed across blocks. Our results reveal that the behavioral cost of responding to incongruent than congruent trials (i.e., the crossmodal congruency effect) was modulated by the proportion of congruent trials. Most importantly, the EEG gamma band response and the gamma-theta coupling were also affected by this modulation of top-down control, whereas the late theta band response related to the congruency effect was not. These findings suggest that gamma band response is more than a marker of multisensory binding, being also sensitive to the correspondence between expected and actual multisensory stimulation. By contrast, theta band response was affected by congruency but appears to be largely immune to stimulation expectancy.
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