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A prominent model of how the brain regulates attention proposes that the anterior cingulate cortex monitors the occurrence of conflict between incompatible response tendencies and signals this information to a cognitive control system in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Cognitive control is thought to resolve conflict through the attentional biasing of(More)
The ability to acquire and use several languages selectively is a unique and essential human capacity. Here we investigate the fundamental question of how multiple languages are represented in a human brain. We applied functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to determine the spatial relationship between native and second languages in the human cortex,(More)
Effective mental functioning requires that cognition be protected from emotional conflict due to interference by task-irrelevant emotionally salient stimuli. The neural mechanisms by which the brain detects and resolves emotional conflict are still largely unknown, however. Drawing on the classic Stroop conflict task, we developed a protocol that allowed us(More)
The human brain protects the processing of task-relevant stimuli from interference ("conflict") by task-irrelevant stimuli via attentional biasing mechanisms. The lateral prefrontal cortex has been implicated in resolving conflict between competing stimuli by selectively enhancing task-relevant stimulus representations in sensory cortices. Conversely,(More)
It is well known that performance on a given trial of a cognitive task is affected by the nature of previous trials. For example, conflict effects on interference tasks, such as the Stroop task, are reduced subsequent to high-conflict trials relative to low-conflict trials. This interaction effect between previous and current trial types is called "conflict(More)
Responses to threat-related stimuli are influenced by conscious and unconscious processes, but the neural systems underlying these processes and their relationship to anxiety have not been clearly delineated. Using fMRI, we investigated the neural responses associated with the conscious and unconscious (backwardly masked) perception of fearful faces in(More)
To ensure optimal task performance, the human brain detects and resolves conflict in information processing via a cognitive control system. However, it is not known whether conflict resolution relies on a single central resource of cognitive control, or on a collection of independent control mechanisms that deal with different types of conflict. In order to(More)
The dorsal medial frontal cortex (dMFC) is highly active during choice behavior. Though many models have been proposed to explain dMFC function, the conflict monitoring model is the most influential. It posits that dMFC is primarily involved in detecting interference between competing responses thus signaling the need for control. It accurately predicts(More)
The neural basis for perceptual grouping operations in the human visual system, including the processes which generate illusory contours, is fundamental to understanding human vision. We have employed functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate these processes noninvasively. Images were acquired on a GE Signa 1.5T scanner equipped for echo planar(More)
We have studied the ability of observers to discriminate between suprathreshold vertical sinusoidal spatial-frequency gratings on the basis of spatial frequency. The results show that spatial-frequency discrimination is not a smooth function of spatial frequency but instead appears regularly segmented. Similar results were also obtained in an experiment in(More)