Individual faces elicit distinct response patterns in human anterior temporal cortex

N. Kriegeskorte*, E. Formisano, B. Sorger, R.W. Goebel

*Corresponding author for this work

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Visual face identification requires distinguishing between thousands of faces we know. This computational feat involves a network of brain regions including the fusiform face area (FIFA) and anterior inferotemporal cortex (aIT), whose roles in the process are not well understood. Here, we provide the first demonstration that it is possible to discriminate cortical response patterns elicited by individual face images with high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Response patterns elicited by the face images were distinct in aIT but not in the FFA. Individual-level face information is likely to be present in both regions, but our data suggest that it is more pronounced in aIT. One interpretation is that the FIFA detects faces and engages aIT for identification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20600-20605
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number51
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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