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A novel function of septins in the control of early morphological neuronal differentiation

On The May 26, 2015

Leïla Boubakar

Team Director - Valérie Castellani

Abstract :

In a recent study (Cléry et al. 2015), we show that looming stimuli towards the face enhance tactile sensitivity at the predicted time and location of the impact, suggesting the involvement of multisensory integration areas in the prediction of impact to the body. In order to test this hypothesis and identify the neural bases of the prediction of impact to the face by a looming stimulus, we use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in monkeys. Specifically, very weak airpuffs (modeling the impact to the body) were delivered either after a degraded looming visual stimulus, at the predicted time of impact (temporal predictive condition), or during the visual sequence (simultaneous visuo-tactile presentation). We show that maximal cortical activations are observed when the looming stimulus spatially and temporally predicts the tactile stimulus. These predictive processes activate, in addition to striate and extrastriate visual areas, a parieto-frontal network composed of the ventral intraparietal area VIP, prefrontal area 44 and premotor area F4. Thus, the prediction of the heteromodal consequences of a looming visual stimulus onto the tactile modality recruits a network previously described for its contribution to multisensory integration.