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    Retrospective selection in visual and tactile working memory is mediated by shared control mechanisms

    Katus, Tobias and Eimer, Martin (2020) Retrospective selection in visual and tactile working memory is mediated by shared control mechanisms. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 32 (3), pp. 546-557. ISSN 0898-929X.

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    Selective attention regulates the activation of working memory (WM) representations. Retro-cues, presented after memory sample stimuli have been stored, modulate these activation states by triggering shifts of attention to task-relevant samples. Here, we investigated whether the control of such attention shifts is modality-specific or shared across sensory modalities. Participants memorized bilateral tactile and visual sample stimuli, before an auditory retro-cue indicated which visual and tactile stimuli had to be retained. Critically, these cued samples were located on the same side or opposite sides, thus requiring spatially congruent or incongruent attention shifts in tactile and visual WM. To track the attentional selection of retro-cued samples, tactile and visual contralateral delay activities (tCDA and CDA components) were measured. Clear evidence for spatial synergy effects from attention shifts in visual WM on concurrent shifts in tactile WM were observed: Tactile WM performance was impaired, and tCDA components triggered by retro-cues were strongly attenuated on opposite-side relative to same-side trials. These spatial congruency effects were eliminated when cued attention shifts in tactile WM occurred in the absence of simultaneous shifts within visual WM. Results show that in contrast to other modality-specific aspects of WM control, concurrent attentional selection processes within tactile and visual WM are mediated by shared supramodal control processes.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Martin Eimer
    Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2019 11:41
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:54


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