Functional connectivity during top-down modulation of visual short-term memory representations.

Citation:
Kuo, B-C, Yeh Y-Y, Chen AJ-W, D'Esposito M.  2011.  Functional connectivity during top-down modulation of visual short-term memory representations., 2011 May. Neuropsychologia. 49:1589-96.

Abstract:

Recent evidence has revealed that short-lived internal representations held in visual short-term memory (VSTM) can be modulated by top-down control via retrospective attention which impacts subsequent behavioral performance. However, the functional inter-regional interactions underlying these top-down modulatory effects are not fully characterized. Here we used event-related functional magnetic imaging to investigate whether the strength of functional connectivity between the frontal cortex and posterior visual areas varies with the efficacy of top-down modulation of memory traces. Top-down modulation was manipulated by the timing of retro-cuing (early or late) in a VSTM task. Univariate analyses revealed that more effective top-down modulation (early cueing vs. late cueing) increased activity in early visual areas. Importantly, coherency analyses revealed that top-down modulation produced stronger functional connectivity between frontal and posterior occipital regions. Also, participants with stronger functional connectivity exhibit better memory performance. These results suggest that augmented functional connectivity between frontal and posterior visual areas strengthens the VSTM representations of importance to behavioral goals.

Notes:

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