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The ability to group stimuli into meaningful categories is a fundamental cognitive process. To explore its neural basis, we trained monkeys to categorize computer-generated stimuli as "cats" and "dogs." A morphing system was used to systematically vary stimulus shape and precisely define the category boundary. Neural activity in the lateral prefrontal(More)
Previous studies have suggested that both the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and inferior temporal cortex (ITC) are involved in high-level visual processing and categorization, but their respective roles are not known. To address this, we trained monkeys to categorize a continuous set of visual stimuli into two categories, "cats" and "dogs." The stimuli were(More)
Categorization is a process by which the brain assigns meaning to sensory stimuli. Through experience, we learn to group stimuli into categories, such as 'chair', 'table' and 'vehicle', which are critical for rapidly and appropriately selecting behavioural responses. Although much is known about the neural representation of simple visual stimulus features(More)
Deriving the quantity of items is an abstract form of categorization. To explore it, monkeys were trained to judge whether successive visual displays contained the same quantity of items. Many neurons in the lateral prefrontal cortex were tuned for quantity irrespective of the exact physical appearance of the displays. Their tuning curves formed overlapping(More)
The ability to group stimuli into meaningful categories is a fundamental cognitive process. To explore its neuronal basis, we trained monkeys to categorize computer-generated stimuli as "cats" and "dogs." A morphing system was used to systematically vary stimulus shape and precisely define a category boundary. Psychophysical testing and analysis of eye(More)
Whereas much is known about the visual shape selectivity of neurons in the inferior temporal cortex (ITC), less is known about the role of visual learning in the development and refinement of ITC shape selectivity. To address this, we trained monkeys to perform a visual categorization task with a parametric set of highly familiar stimuli. During training,(More)
The ability to recognize the behavioral relevance, or category membership, of sensory stimuli is critical for interpreting the meaning of events in our environment. Neurophysiological studies of visual categorization have found categorical representations of stimuli in prefrontal cortex (PFC), an area that is closely associated with cognitive and executive(More)
The ability to generalize behaviour-guiding principles and concepts from experience is key to intelligent, goal-directed behaviour. It allows us to deal efficiently with a complex world and to adapt readily to novel situations. We review evidence that the prefrontal cortex-the cortical area that reaches its greatest elaboration in primates-plays a central(More)
One of the most fascinating issues in neuroscience is how the brain makes decisions. Recent evidence points to the parietal cortex as an important locus for certain kinds of decisions. Because parietal neurons are also involved in movements, it has been proposed that decisions are encoded in an intentional, action-based framework based on the movements used(More)
Specialization and hierarchy are organizing principles for primate cortex, yet there is little direct evidence for how cortical areas are specialized in the temporal domain. We measured timescales of intrinsic fluctuations in spiking activity across areas and found a hierarchical ordering, with sensory and prefrontal areas exhibiting shorter and longer(More)