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Paper   IPM / Cognitive / 14453
School of Cognitive Sciences
  Title:   Temporal dynamics of visual category representation in the macaque inferior temporal cortex
1.  M.R.A. Dehaqani
2.  A. Vahabie
3.  R. Kiani
4.  M. Ahmadabadi
5.  B. Araabi
6.  H. Esteky
  Status:   Published
  Journal: Journal of Neurophysiology
  Vol.:  116
  Year:  2016
  Pages:   587-601
  Supported by:  IPM
Object categories are recognized at multiple levels of hierarchical abstractions. Psychophysical studies have shown a more rapid perceptual access to the mid-level category information (e.g., human faces) than the higher (superordinate; e.g., animal) or the lower (subordinate; e.g., face identity) level. Mid-level category members share many features, whereas few features are shared among members of different mid-level categories. To understand better the neural basis of expedited access to mid-level category information, we examined neural responses of the inferior temporal (IT) cortex of macaque monkeys viewing a large number of object images. We found an earlier representation of mid-level categories in the IT population and single-unit responses compared with superordinate- and subordinate-level categories. The short-latency representation of mid-level category information shows that visual cortex first divides the category shape space at its sharpest boundaries, defined by high/low within/between-group similarity. This short-latency, mid-level category boundary map may be a prerequisite for representation of other categories at more global and finer scales.

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