19
September
2011

Seminar by Winrich Freiwald (The Rockefeller University, New York, USA)

Title: Taking apart the neural machinery of face processing

Time and venue: 5:15 p.m., Lecture Hall, Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, Deutschordenstr. 46, 60528 Frankfurt am Main. Hosted by Wolf Singer and Lucia Melloni

Abstract
We perceive the world as a space of objects. We can recognize these objects with an ease belying the daunting complexity of the computational challenges involved - a complexity made evident by the size of the brain region supporting object recognition. To elucidate the neural mechanisms of object recognition, I will argue in my talk, evolution has presented us with a unique model system. The temporal lobes of macaque monkeys contain neural machinery to support face recognition consisting of six discrete patches of face-selective cortex. The two main organizing features of this system - concentration of cells encoding the same complex object category into modules and spatial separation of modules - make it possible to break down the process of face recognition into its components. In my talk I will present anatomical results supporting the notion that the distributed face patches really are part of an integrated face-processing machine, and electrophysiological results showing that each patch subserves a distinct computational function.

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Dr. Arjan Vink
T: +49 69 850033-2900
M: +49 175 2647988
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