Neuronal Discharges and Gamma Oscillations Explicitly Reflect Visual Consciousness in the Lateral Prefrontal Cortex

Theofanis I Panagiotaropoulos, Gustavo Deco, Vishal Kapoor, Nikos K. Logothetis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

68 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Neuronal discharges in the primate temporal lobe, but not in the striate and extrastriate cortex, reliably reflect stimulus awareness. However, it is not clear whether visual consciousness should be uniquely localized in the temporal association cortex. Here we used binocular flash suppression to investigate whether visual awareness is also explicitly reflected in feature-selective neural activity of the macaque lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC), a cortical area reciprocally connected to the temporal lobe. We show that neuronal discharges in the majority of single units and recording sites in the LPFC follow the phenomenal perception of a preferred stimulus. Furthermore, visual awareness is reliably reflected in the power modulation of high-frequency (>50 Hz) local field potentials in sites where spiking activity is found to be perceptually modulated. Our results suggest that the activity of neuronal populations in at least two association cortical areas represents the content of conscious visual perception.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)924-935
Number of pages12
JournalNeuron
Volume74
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes

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