Neural adaptation is related to face repetition irrespective of identity: A reappraisal of the N170 effect

Ido Amihai, Leon Y. Deouell, Shlomo Bentin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations

Abstract

Event-related potentials offer evidence for face distinctive neural activity that peaks at about 170 ms following the onset of face stimuli (the N170 effect). We investigated the role of the perceptual mechanism reflected by the N170 effect by comparing the adaptation of the N170 amplitude when target faces were preceded either by identical face images or by different faces relative to when they were preceded by objects. In two experiments, we demonstrate that the N170 is equally adapted by repetition of the same or different faces. Thus, our findings show that the N170 is sensitive to the category rather than the identity of a face. This outcome supports the hypothesis that the N170 effect reflects the activity of a perceptual mechanism which discriminates faces from objects and streams face stimuli to dedicated circuits, specialized in encoding and decoding information about the face.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)193-204
Number of pages12
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Volume209
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2011

Keywords

  • Face categorization
  • Face identification
  • Face perception
  • N170
  • Neural adaptation

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Neural adaptation is related to face repetition irrespective of identity: A reappraisal of the N170 effect'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this