Fronto-occipital Mismatch Responses in Pre-attentive Detection of Visual Changes : Implication on a Generic Brain Network Underlying Mismatch Negativity (MMN)

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Original languageEnglish
Article number118633
Journal / PublicationNeuroImage
Online published5 Oct 2021
Publication statusOnline published - 5 Oct 2021


Current theories of pre-attentive change detection suggest a regularity or prediction violation mechanism involving a frontotemporal network. Modulations of the early inferior frontal cortex (IFC) mismatch response representing the effort in comparing a stimulus to the prediction, the superior temporal cortex (STC) response indicating deviance detection, and the late IFC response representing prediction model updating were consistently demonstrated in auditory change detection using event-related optical signal (EROS). If the prediction violation hypothesis represents a universal mechanism, a generic neural mechanism should be found in all sensory modalities. We postulated a generic fronto-sensory cortical network underlying the prediction violation mechanism: the IFC is responsible for non-modality-specific prediction processes while the sensory cortices are responsible for modality-specific error signal generation process. This study examined the involvement of the IFC-occipital cortex (OC) network in visual pre-attentive change detection. The EROS mismatch responses to deviant bar arrays violating a fixed orientation regularity (low in regularity abstractness) were compared to that of deviant violating a rotational orientation regularity (high in abstractness) while the information available for establishing the prediction model was manipulated by varying the number of standards preceding the deviants. Modulations of the IFC-OC mismatch response patterns by abstractness and train length reflected the processing demands on the prediction processes and were similar to that of the IFC-STC network. These findings demonstrated that the fronto-sensory cortical network is not unique to auditory pre-attentive change detection and provided supports for a universal neural mechanism across sensory modalities as suggested by the prediction violation hypothesis.

Research Area(s)

  • Change detection, Frontal cortex, MMN, Optical imaging, Prediction

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