The neural substrates associated with inattentional blindness

Consciousness and Cognition 20 (4):1768-1775 (2011)
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Inattentional blindness is the failure to perceive salient stimuli presented at unattended locations. Whereas the behavioral manifestation of inattentional blindness has been investigated, the neural basis of this phenomenon has remained elusive. In the current study, event-related fMRI was used to identify the neural substrates associated with inattentional blindness. During central fixation, participants named colored digits presented at a peripheral location. On a subset of trials, an unexpected checkerboard circle was presented at the same eccentricity along with the colored digits . Neural activity during inattentional blindness was observed in the prefrontal cortex. Together with previous findings, these results call into question the widespread view that activity in the prefrontal cortex reflects conscious processing



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