Binocular rivalry and visual awareness in human extrastriate cortex

Neuron. 1998 Oct;21(4):753-9. doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(00)80592-9.


We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to monitor stimulus-selective responses of the human fusiform face area (FFA) and parahippocampal place area (PPA) during binocular rivalry in which a face and a house stimulus were presented to different eyes. Though retinal stimulation remained constant, subjects perceived changes from house to face that were accompanied by increasing FFA and decreasing PPA activity; perceived changes from face to house led to the opposite pattern of responses. These responses during rivalry were equal in magnitude to those evoked by nonrivalrous stimulus alternation, suggesting that activity in the FFA and PPA reflects the perceived rather than the retinal stimulus, and that neural competition during binocular rivalry has been resolved by these stages of visual processing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Face
  • Hippocampus / physiology
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • Vision Disparity / physiology
  • Vision, Binocular / physiology*
  • Visual Cortex / physiology*
  • Visual Perception / physiology*