Frequency of alpha oscillation predicts individual differences in perceptual stability during binocular rivalry

Sucharit Katyal, Sheng He, Bin He, Stephen A. Engel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

When ambiguous visual stimuli have multiple interpretations, human perception can alternate between them, producing perceptual multistability. There is a large variation between individuals in how long stable percepts endure, on average, between switches, but the underlying neural basis of this individual difference in perceptual dynamics remains obscure. Here, we show that in one widely studied multistable paradigm–binocular rivalry–perceptual stability in individuals is predicted by the frequency of their neural oscillations within the alpha range (7–13 Hz). Our results suggest revising models of rivalry to incorporate effects of neural oscillations on perceptual alternations, and raise the possibility that a common factor may influence dynamics in many neural processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2422-2433
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Brain Mapping
Volume40
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by National Institutes of Health (grant number: R01 EY02301). The authors would like to thank Mohan Ji, Graham Peterson, Samuel Elliott, Shasteana Rancher, and Collin Teich for their assistance with data collection.

Keywords

  • bistable perception
  • cognitive dynamics
  • electroencephalography
  • peak alpha frequency
  • visual perception

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