WVU researcher discovers new brain cell that works in visual searching
A researcher at West Virginia University recently published a report detailing the discovery of how a newly discovered type of brain cell helps to identify an object a person is looking for, according to a university article.Shuo Wang, assistant professor of chemical and biomedical engineering at the university, recently found evidence that "target cells" in the brain's medial temporal lobe function to identify if an object being visually focused on is what is being looked for, according to the article.
“During goal-directed visual search, these target cells signal whether the currently fixated item is the target of the current search,” Wang said. “This target signal was behaviorally relevant because it predicted whether a subject detected or missed a fixated target, i.e. failed to abort the search."
Prior research has determined that the ability to search for and detect targets is controlled by top-down signals from the brain's frontal area. This new research shows that other areas of the brain also play a role.
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