Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2008 Feb 27;28(9):2252-60.
doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2742-07.2008.

The Cerebellum Predicts the Timing of Perceptual Events

Affiliations
Free PMC article

The Cerebellum Predicts the Timing of Perceptual Events

Jill X O'Reilly et al. J Neurosci. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Prospective (forward) temporal-spatial models are essential for both action and perception, but the literature on perceptual prediction has primarily been limited to the spatial domain. In this study we asked how the neural systems of perceptual prediction change, when change-over-time must be modeled. We used a naturalistic paradigm in which observers had to extrapolate the trajectory of an occluded moving object to make perceptual judgments based on the spatial (direction) or temporal-spatial (velocity) characteristics of object motion. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging we found that a region in posterior cerebellum (lobule VII crus 1) was engaged specifically when a temporal-spatial model was required (velocity judgment task), suggesting that circuitry involved in motor forward-modeling may also be engaged in perceptual prediction when a model of change-over-time is required. This cerebellar region appears to supply a temporal signal to cortical networks involved in spatial orienting: a frontal-parietal network associated with attentional orienting was engaged in both (spatial and temporal-spatial) tasks, but functional connectivity between these regions and the posterior cerebellum was enhanced in the temporal-spatial prediction task. In addition to the oculomotor spatial orienting network, regions involved in hand movements (aIP and PMv) were recruited in the temporal-spatial task, suggesting that the nature of perceptual prediction may bias the recruitment of sensory-motor networks in orienting. Finally, in temporal-spatial prediction, functional connectivity was enhanced between the cerebellum and the putamen, a structure which has been proposed to supply the brain's metric of time, in the temporal-spatial prediction task.

Figures

Figure 1.
Figure 1.
Task display. Participants saw a target (+ sign) moving across a computer display at a fixed speed, in a randomly selected direction. When the target reached the dotted line, it appeared to slip behind an occluder and continued its motion invisibly. After ∼800–1700 ms of occluded motion, the target reappeared but with a slight deviation from its expected position. Gray crosses indicate expected position; black crosses indicate possible positions of reappearance. a, In the temporal–spatial (velocity judgment) condition, the target changed speed during the occluded motion and thus had traveled too far or not far enough. b, In the spatial (direction judgment) condition, the target changed direction during the occlusion and was therefore displaced perpendicularly to its trajectory. Only the velocity judgment task required a model of how target motion changed over time. Participants responded with a choice button press, which they were prompted to make after a delay of 350 ms.
Figure 2.
Figure 2.
Effect of task set on performance in the additional behavioral experiment. a, Accuracy. b, Reaction time. Participants were instructed at the start of each block on the proportion of temporal–spatial (velocity judgment) and spatial (direction judgment) trials. Conditions were as follows: T, 100% temporal–spatial trials; Ts, 75% temporal spatial trials, 25% spatial trials; TS, 50% temporal–spatial trials, 50% spatial trials; tS, 25% temporal–spatial trials, 75% spatial trials; S, 100% spatial trials. Results are presented for the two types of trials (spatial and temporal–spatial) within each block separately. There was a linear increase in accuracy and decrease in reaction time as the probed dimension was increasingly expected, indicating that different cognitive processes were emphasized in the two tasks.
Figure 3.
Figure 3.
Activity associated with temporal–spatial perceptual prediction. a, Increased activity in the temporal–spatial task compared with the purely spatial task. Activations are rendered on a high-resolution single-subject T1 image (Holmes et al., 1998). Left is left. b, Activity specific to the temporal–spatial task, rendered on the SUIT cerebellar template (Diedrichsen, 2006). Left is left.
Figure 4.
Figure 4.
Psychophysiological interactions. Areas that show enhanced functional connectivity with the posterior cerebellum in the temporal–spatial prediction task compared with the spatial task. Activations are shown on a high-resolution single-subject T1 image (Holmes et al., 1998). Left is left. a, Axial slice at z = 3 showing PPI effect in MT. b, Axial slice at z = 9 showing PPI effect in putamen. c, Axial slice at z = 60 showing PPI effect in IPS and FEF. d, Rendered view of the right hemisphere showing region of functional connectivity extending along IPS and separate region of functional connectivity in anterior-inferior parietal cortex. Activations in the left hemisphere were similar (see Table 2).

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 98 articles

See all "Cited by" articles

Publication types

Feedback