Publications of Mareschal, D.

Electrophysiological correlates of common-onset visual masking

In common-onset visual masking (COVM) the target and the mask come into view simultaneously. Masking occurs when the mask remains on the screen for longer after deletion of the target. Enns and Di Lollo [Enns, J. T., & Di Lollo, V. (2000). What's new in visual masking? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 4(9), 345-352] have argued that this type of masking can be explained by re-entrant visual processing. In the present studies we used high-density event-related brain potentials (HD-ERP) to obtain neural evidence for re-entrant processing in COVM. In two experiments the participants' task was to indicate the presence or absence of a vertical bar situated at the lower part of a ring highlighted by the mask. The only difference between the experiments was the duration of the target: 13 and 40 ms for the first and second experiment respectively. Behavioral results were consistent between experiments: COVM was stronger as a joint function of a large set size and longer trailing mask duration. Electrophysiological data from both studies revealed modulation of a posterior P2 component around 220 ms post-stimulus onset associated with masking. Further, in the critical experimental condition we revealed a significant relation between the amplitude of the P2 and behavioural response accuracy. We hypothesize that this re-activation of early visual areas reflects re-entrant feedback from higher to lower visual areas, providing converging evidence for re-entrance as an explanation for COVM. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Common-onset visual masking in infancy: Behavioral and electrophysiological evidence

Common-onset visual masking (COVM) occurs when a mask and a target have common onset but delayed offset, with the mask persisting beyond the duration of the target [Di Lollo, V., Enns, J. T., & Rensink, R. A. Competition for consciousness among visual events: The psychophysics of reentrant visual events. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 1-99, 481-507, 2000]. We report the first behavioral and electrophysiological evidence of COVM in infants. An initial behavioral Study included a familiarization phase during which a visual pattern (the target) surrounded by four black dots (the mask) was flashed 15 times to the infant. In the "unmasked" condition, the mask disappeared with the target. In the "masked" condition, the mask remained on the screen after deletion of the target for a further 93 msec. During the test phase, the familiar target pattern was paired with a new pattern. infants in the unmasked condition showed a significant familiarity preference, suggesting that they had encoded the target during familiarization, whereas those in the masked condition showed no preference, suggesting that they had not encoded the target during familiarization. In the second experiment, high-density event-related potentials were used to investigate the electrophysiological pattern of activity that accompanies COVM. Six-month-old infants viewed both masked and unmasked conditions. Electrophysiological data indicated that over posterior channels the masked condition elicited a larger amplitude positive wave around 300 msec after stimulus onset than trials in the unmasked condition.