Neuronal representation of object orientation

H. O. Karnath, S. Ferber, Heinrich Bulthoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The dissociation between object identity and object orientation observed in six patients with brain damage, has been taken as evidence for a view-invariant model of object recognition. However, there was also some indication that these patients were not generally agnosic for object orientation but were able to gain access to at least some information about objects' canonical upright. We studied a new case (KB) with spared knowledge of object identity and impaired perception of object orientation using a forced choice paradigm to contrast directly the patient's ability to perceive objects' canonical upright vs non-upright orientations. We presented 2D-pictures of objects with unambiguous canonical upright orientations in four different orientations (0°, -90°, +90°, 180°). KB showed no impairment in identifying letters, objects, animals, or faces irrespective of their given orientation. Also, her knowledge of upright orientation of stimuli was perfectly preserved. In sharp contrast, KB was not able to judge the orientation when the stimuli were presented in a non-upright orientation. The findings give further support for a distributed view-based representation of objects in which neurons become tuned to the features present in certain views of an object. Since we see more upright than inverted animals and familiar objects, the statistics of these images leads to a larger number of neurons tuned for objects in an upright orientation. We suppose that probably for this reason KB's knowledge of upright orientation was found to be more robust against neuronal damage than knowledge of other orientations. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1235-1241
Number of pages7
JournalNeuropsychologia
Volume38
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Aug 1
Externally publishedYes

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Neurons
Aptitude
Brain
Recognition (Psychology)

Keywords

  • Agnosia
  • Brain damage
  • Human
  • Object orientation
  • Object recognition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

Cite this

Neuronal representation of object orientation. / Karnath, H. O.; Ferber, S.; Bulthoff, Heinrich.

In: Neuropsychologia, Vol. 38, No. 9, 01.08.2000, p. 1235-1241.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Karnath, H. O. ; Ferber, S. ; Bulthoff, Heinrich. / Neuronal representation of object orientation. In: Neuropsychologia. 2000 ; Vol. 38, No. 9. pp. 1235-1241.
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