Searching for “the Top” in Top-Down Control

  title={Searching for “the Top” in Top-Down Control},
  author={Brian T. Miller and Mark D’Esposito},
The neurobiology of visual attention: finding sources
  • T. Moore
  • Biology, Psychology
    Current Opinion in Neurobiology
  • 2006
The Dynamic Nature of Top-Down Signals Originating from Prefrontal Cortex: A Combined fMRI–TMS Study
Findings provide evidence for a compensatory mechanism following insults to the brain, and insight into the dynamic nature of top-down signals originating from the PFC.
Fundamental components of attention.
  • E. Knudsen
  • Psychology, Biology
    Annual review of neuroscience
  • 2007
This chapter presents a framework for thinking about attention that facilitates the analysis of this cognitive process in terms of underlying neural mechanisms and recent results from neurobiological research on attention are discussed.
The good, the bad, and the ugly of top-down executive control
Direct evidence is provided using transcranial magnetic stimulation and neuroimaging that the PFC is a source of top-down control of early visual regions and interfering with PFC function can sometimes lead to paradoxical improvements in task performance.
Top–Down Attentional Control in Parkinson's Disease: Salient Considerations
Attention was captured by bottom–up attention to salient information to a greater extent in patients than in controls when shifting to a high-salient dimension during attentional set shifting, providing the first direct evidence for a failure of top–down attentional control.
Functional interactions between prefrontal and visual association cortex contribute to top-down modulation of visual processing.
These findings suggest that PFC biases activity levels in VAC by adjusting the strength of functional coupling in accordance with stimulus relevance, and reveal a network of regions that exhibit strong positive correlations with a ssVAC seed during all task conditions.
Top-Down Versus Bottom-Up Control of Attention in the Prefrontal and Posterior Parietal Cortices
The result indicates that top-down and bottom-up signals arise from the frontal and sensory cortex, respectively, and different modes of attention may emphasize synchrony at different frequencies.
Role of the lateral prefrontal cortex in executive behavioral control.
The lateral prefrontal cortex is critically involved in broad aspects of executive behavioral control and the involvement of this area in the implementation of behavioral rules and in setting multiple behavioral goals has been discovered.
The Neural and Computational Basis of Controlled Speed-Accuracy Tradeoff during Task Performance
Increased baseline activity is shown during speed emphasis in a network of areas related to response preparation and execution, including the premotor areas of the frontal lobe, the basal ganglia, the thalamus, and the dorsolateral prefrontal and left parietal cortices.
Visual attention: Linking prefrontal sources to neuronal and behavioral correlates


An integrative theory of prefrontal cortex function.
It is proposed that cognitive control stems from the active maintenance of patterns of activity in the prefrontal cortex that represent goals and the means to achieve them, which provide bias signals to other brain structures whose net effect is to guide the flow of activity along neural pathways that establish the proper mappings between inputs, internal states, and outputs needed to perform a given task.
Top-down Enhancement and Suppression of the Magnitude and Speed of Neural Activity
These findings reveal the fine degree of influence that goal-directed attention exerts upon activity within the visual association cortex and document capacity limitations in top-down enhancement corresponding with working memory performance deficits.
Control of goal-directed and stimulus-driven attention in the brain
Evidence for partially segregated networks of brain areas that carry out different attentional functions is reviewed, finding that one system is involved in preparing and applying goal-directed selection for stimuli and responses, and the other is specialized for the detection of behaviourally relevant stimuli.
A Comparison of Primate Prefrontal and Inferior Temporal Cortices during Visual Categorization
The ITC seems more involved in the analysis of currently viewed shapes, whereas the PFC showed stronger category signals, memory effects, and a greater tendency to encode information in terms of its behavioral meaning.
Selective representation of relevant information by neurons in the primate prefrontal cortex
Results suggest that the prefrontal cortex is involved in selecting and maintaining behaviourally relevant information.
Top-down signal from prefrontal cortex in executive control of memory retrieval
Feedback projections from prefrontal cortex to the posterior association cortex appear to serve the executive control of voluntary recall in monkeys by transmitting the top-down signal fromrontal cortex.
Where bottom-up meets top-down: neuronal interactions during perception and imagery.
This investigation revealed that neuronal interactions between occipito-temporal, parietal and frontal regions are task- and stimulus-dependent and mediated by content-sensitive forward connections from early visual areas.
A neural basis for visual search in inferior temporal cortex
The results suggest that inferior temporal cortex is involved in selecting the objects to which the authors attend and foveate, and this area is known to be important for high-level visual processing.
Contribution of Human Prefrontal Cortex to Delay Performance
It is suggested that the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is crucial for gating distracting information as well as maintaining distributed intrahemispheric neural activity during auditory working memory.