DOI: 10.1162/jocn_a_02099 ISSN: 0898-929X

Automatic Change Detection in Interwoven Sequences: A Visual Mismatch Negativity Study

Nóra Csikós, Bela Petro, Petia Kojouharova, Zsófia Anna Gaál, István Czigler
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


In this study, we investigated whether the cognitive system, known to be able to register regular visual event sequences and the violation of these sequences automatically, had the capacity of processing two sequences simultaneously. To this end, we measured the visual mismatch negativity (vMMN) component of ERPs as interwoven event sequences simultaneously presented to the left and right side of the screen. One of the sequences, consisted of geometric patterns (diamonds); the other, photographs of human faces. In successive cycles, parts of the stimuli vanished and then re-appeared (the OFF/ON method). The vanishing parts served as either standard (frequently vanishing parts) or infrequent (deviant) events, but these events were task-irrelevant. The 20 adult participants (age 21.40 ± 2.72 years) performed a visual tracking task, with the OFF/ON task being a passive oddball paradigm. According to the results, both OFF and ON events, and both diamond and face stimuli elicited the vMMN component: showing that the system underlying this activity is capable of processing two event sequences if the sequences consist of fairly different kind of objects as stimuli. The sLORETA analysis showed that the source of vMMN was more frequent contralaterally to the deviant event, and the sources comprised loci from ventral and dorsal structures, as well as some anterior loci.

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