Distinct Cortical Networks Subserve Spatio-temporal Sampling in Vision through Different Oscillatory Rhythms

Luca Ronconi, Elio Balestrieri, Daniel Baldauf, David Melcher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although visual input arrives continuously, sensory information is segmented into (quasi-)discrete events. Here, we investigated the neural correlates of spatiotemporal binding in humans with magnetoencephalography using two tasks where separate flashes were presented on each trial but were per-ceived, in a bistable way, as either a single or two separate events. The first task (two-flash fusion) involved judging one versus two flashes, whereas the second task (apparent motion: AM) involved judging coherent motion versus two stationary flashes. Results indicate two different functional networks underlying two unique aspects of temporal binding. In two-flash fusion trials, involving an integration window of ∼50 msec, evoked responses differed as a function of perceptual interpre-tation by ∼25 msec after stimuli offset. Multivariate decoding of subjective perception based on prestimulus oscillatory phase was significant for alpha-band activity in the right medial temporal ( V5/ MT) area, with the strength of prestimulus connectivity between early visual areas and V5/ MT being predictive of performance. In contrast, the longer integration window (∼130 msec) for AM showed evoked field differences only ∼250 msec after stimuli offset. Phase decoding of the perceptual outcome in AM trials was significant for theta-band activity in the right intraparietal sulcus. Prestimulus theta-band connectivity between V5/ MT and intraparietal sulcus best predicted AM perceptual outcome. For both tasks, phase effects found could not be accounted by concomitant variations in power. These results show a strong relationship between specific spatiotem-poral binding windows and specific oscillations, linked to the information flow between different areas of the where and when visual pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)572-589
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2024

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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