Papers for the month of March 2017


Pyke, A., Fincham, J.

"When Math Operations have Visuospatial Meanings versus Purely Symbolic Definitions: Which Solving Stages and Brain Regions are Affected?"
NeuroImage, 2017.03.046:1

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Learners solved identical problems via symbolic or visuospatial mental strategies. HSMM-MVPA analysis applied to fMRI data revealed 4 distinct solving stages (encode, plan, compute, respond). Group differences were not evident overall but rather were stage-specific. The visuospatial group had more active imagery/semantic areas in the encode and compute stages.


Audette, Nick; Urban-Ciecko, J.; Matsushita, M.

"POm Thalamocortical Input Drives Layer-Specific Microcircuits in Somatosensory Cortex"
Cerebral Cortex, 10:1-17

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The way in which the neocortex transforms incoming sensory input is constrained by the distribution and strength of synapses onto specific subtypes of neurons. Using an array of transgenic mice for cell-type specific electrophysiological recordings in acute brain slices, we find that neurons in deep and superficial layers receive direct thalamic input. However, different layers have distinctive wiring principles that lead to reliable firing with fast feedforward inhibition in deep layers and prolonged activation with delayed inhibition in superficial layers.


Collins, E., Park, J., Behrmann, M.

"Number representation is encoded in the human subcortex"
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114:2806-2815

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Using a Wheatstone stereoscope, we investigated the extent to which the monocular visual pathway contributes to quantity discrimination. We found a monocular advantage when participants judged large (4:1), but not small (1:1) ratios of dot stimuli across several replications.


B. Thompson, Jeanine K. Stefanucci, Devin Gill & D. Kevin McGee

"The Perceptual Basis of Vast Space"
Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, DOI 10.3758/s13423-017-1265-0:01-09

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.This paper explores the perceptual basis of vast experience, including reliability and visual precursors.


Smith, Matt, Konecky, Roma

"Monkey Prefrontal Neurons during Sternberg Task Performance: Full Contents of Working Memory or Most Recent Item?"
Journal of Neurophysiology, Epub ahead of print:000

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.It has long been thought that items held in working memory are encoded by delay-period activity in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Here we describe evidence contrary to that view. In monkeys performing a serial multi-item working memory task, dorsolateral prefrontal neurons encode almost exclusively the identity of the sample presented most recently. Information about earlier samples must be encoded outside prefrontal cortex or represented within prefrontal cortex in a cryptic code.


Grabell A., Li Y., Barker J.W., Wakschlag L.S., Huppert T.J.

"Evidence of Non-Linear Associations between Frustration-Related Prefrontal Cortex Activation and the Normal:Abnormal Spectrum of Irritability in Young Children."
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 1:1

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.This project used fNIRS to investigate the non-linear relationship between frustration related brain activation and irritability in typically developing children and children suffering from developmental psychopathology.


Shiwarski DJ, Tipton A, Giraldo MD, Schmidt BF, Gold MS, Pradhan AA

"A PTEN-Regulated Checkpoint Controls Surface Delivery of δ Opioid Receptors."
The Journal of Neuroscience, 37(14):3741–3752

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Opioid analgesics, such as morphine, which target the delta opioid receptor, have been the mainstay of pain management, but their use is highly limited by adverse effects and their variable efficacy in chronic pain. Identifying alternate analgesic targets is therefore of great significance. Although the delta opioid receptor is an attractive option, a critical limiting factor in developing delta opioid receptor as a target has been the low efficacy of delta opioid receptor agonists. Why delta opioid receptor agonists show low efficacy is still under debate. This study provides mechanistic and functional data that intracellular localization of the delta opioid receptor in neurons is a key factor that contributes to low agonist efficacy, and presents a proof of mechanism that relocating the receptor to the cell surface improves efficacy.


Manelis, A., Popov, V., Paynter, C., Walsh, M., Wheeler, M., Vogt, K.

"Cortical Networks Involved in Memory for Temporal Order"
Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, Advance Online Publication:-

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.An fMRI study demonstrated that the ability to make judgments about the temporal order of events relative to a boundary depends on an episodic retrieval network that is modulated by cognitive control and conflict resolution. We found that medial-temporal, prefrontal, and occipital regions reflect absolute familiarity of the stimuli, regardless of their relative temporal position, while frontopolar, posterior parietal and, specifically, posterior cingulate regions, reflected whether an item appeared before or after a designated reset screen.


Rathelot J-A, Dum RP, Strick PL

"Posterior parietal cortex contains a command apparatus for hand movements"
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 1:6

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The frontal lobe is generally thought to be the exclusive source of descending commands to the spinal cord for the control of hand movements. Here, we identified a region within the parietal lobe of a non-human primate that could contribute commands at the spinal level to assist in generating the dexterous finger movements required in haptic behavior.

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