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Wiens, S., Andersson, A. & Gravenfors, J. (2023). Neural electrophysiological correlates of detection and identification awareness. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 23, 1303-1321
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Neural electrophysiological correlates of detection and identification awareness
2023 (English)In: Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, ISSN 1530-7026, E-ISSN 1531-135X, Vol. 23, p. 1303-1321Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Humans have conscious experiences of the events in their environment. Previous research from electroencephalography (EEG) has shown visual awareness negativity (VAN) at about 200 ms to be a neural correlate of consciousness (NCC). However, when considering VAN as an NCC, it is important to explore which particular experiences are associated with VAN. Recent research proposes that VAN is an NCC of lower-level experiences (detection) rather than higher-level experiences (identification). However, previous results are mixed and have several limitations. In the present study, the stimulus was a ring with a Gabor patch tilting either left or right. On each trial, subjects rated their awareness on a three-level perceptual awareness scale that captured both detection (something vs. nothing) and identification (identification vs. something). Separate staircases were used to adjust stimulus opacity to the detection threshold and the identification threshold. Bayesian linear mixed models provided extreme evidence (BF10 = 131) that VAN was stronger at the detection threshold than at the identification threshold. Mean VAN decreased from -2.12 microV [-2.86, -1.42] at detection to -0.46 microV [-0.79, -0.11] at identification. These results strongly support the claim that VAN is an NCC of lower-level experiences of seeing something rather than of higher-level experiences of specific properties of the stimuli. Thus, results are consistent with recurrent processing theory in that phenomenal visual consciousness is reflected by VAN. Further, results emphasize that it is important to consider the level of experience when searching for NCC.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Nature, 2023
Keywords
consciousness, neural correlates, ERP
National Category
Applied Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-221731 (URN)10.3758/s13415-023-01120-5 (DOI)001056996800001 ()37656374 (PubMedID)2-s2.0-85169800174 (Scopus ID)
Note

This work was supported by a grant to Stefan Wiens from Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation (MMW 2019–0102).

Available from: 2023-09-28 Created: 2023-09-28 Last updated: 2024-01-30Bibliographically approved
Qin, N., Wiens, S., Rauss, K. & Pourtois, G. (2022). Effects of selective attention on the C1 ERP component: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Psychophysiology, 59(12), Article ID e14123.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Effects of selective attention on the C1 ERP component: A systematic review and meta-analysis
2022 (English)In: Psychophysiology, ISSN 0048-5772, E-ISSN 1469-8986, Vol. 59, no 12, article id e14123Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The C1 event-related potential (ERP) captures the earliest stage of feedforward processing in the primary visual cortex (V1). An ongoing debate is whether top-down selective attention can modulate the C1. One side of the debate pointed out that null findings appear to outnumber positive findings; thus, selective attention does not seem to influence the C1. However, this suggestion is not based on a valid approach to summarizing evidence across studies. Therefore, we conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis investigating the effects of selective attention on the C1, involving 47 experiments and 794 subjects in total. Despite heterogeneity across studies, results suggested that attention has a moderate effect on the C1 (Cohen's $$ dz= 0.33, p < .0001); that is, C1 amplitude is larger for visual stimuli that are attended than unattended. These results suggest that C1 is affected by top-down selective attention.

Keywords
attentional load, C1, ERP, primary visual cortex, selective attention, spatial attention
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-207454 (URN)10.1111/psyp.14123 (DOI)000815604700001 ()35751845 (PubMedID)2-s2.0-85132547541 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2022-07-26 Created: 2022-07-26 Last updated: 2023-01-04Bibliographically approved
Wiens, S., Eklund, R., Szychowska, M., Miloff, A., Cosme, D., Pierzchajlo, S. & Carlbring, P. (2022). Electrophysiological correlates of in vivo and virtual reality exposure therapy in spider phobia. Psychophysiology, 59(12), Article ID e14117.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Electrophysiological correlates of in vivo and virtual reality exposure therapy in spider phobia
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2022 (English)In: Psychophysiology, ISSN 0048-5772, E-ISSN 1469-8986, Vol. 59, no 12, article id e14117Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Specific phobia can be treated successfully with exposure therapy. Although exposure therapy has strong effects on self-reported ratings and behavioral avoidance, effects on measures derived from electroencephalography (EEG) are scant and unclear. To fill this gap, spider-phobic individuals received either in-vivo or virtual reality exposure treatment. Patients were tested twice (one week before and after treatment), and control subjects once. In each session, EEG was recorded to spider pictures as well as other positive, negative, and neutral pictures. During EEG recording, participants performed a simple detection task while task-irrelevant pictures were shown in the background. The task was used to reduce potential confounding effects from shifts of attention. After the task, subjects were shown the pictures again and rated each in terms of their emotional reaction (arousal and pleasantness). The results showed that before treatment, patients rated spiders as more negative than did control subjects. Patients also showed elevated early posterior negativity (EPN) and late positive potential (LPP) to spiders. After treatment, the negative emotional ratings of spiders were substantially reduced. Critically, Bayesian analyses suggested that EPN and LPP were unaffected by treatment and that the treatment groups did not differ in their responses (EPN, LPP, and ratings). These findings suggest that the effects of in vivo and virtual reality exposure therapy are similar and that the initial stages of motivated attention (EPN and LPP) are unaffected by treatment.

Keywords
EEG, ERP, psychopathology, specific phobia, therapy effects, virtual reality
National Category
Psychiatry
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-207283 (URN)10.1111/psyp.14117 (DOI)000809186300001 ()35687668 (PubMedID)2-s2.0-85131569484 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2022-07-13 Created: 2022-07-13 Last updated: 2023-10-24Bibliographically approved
Wiens, S. (2021). Dissociation Between Speech and Emotion Effects in Short-Term Memory: A Data Reanalysis. Meta-Psychology, 5, Article ID MP.2019.1635.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Dissociation Between Speech and Emotion Effects in Short-Term Memory: A Data Reanalysis
2021 (English)In: Meta-Psychology, E-ISSN 2003-2714, Vol. 5, article id MP.2019.1635Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Performance in visual serial recall tasks is often impaired by irrelevant auditory distracters. The duplex-mechanism account of auditory distraction states that if the distracters provide order cues, these interfere with the processing of the order cues in the serial recall task (interference by process). In contrast, the unitary account states that distracters capture only attention on a general level (attentional distraction) without interfering specifically withorder processing. Marsh et al. (2018, Journal of Experimental Psychology-Learning Memory and Cognition, 44, 882-897) reported finding a dissociation between the effects of serial recall tasks and those of a missing-item task on the disruptive effects of speech and of emotional words, as predicted by the duplex-mechanism account. Critically, the reported analyses did not test specifically for the claimed dissociation. Therefore, I reanalyzed the Marsh et al. data and conducted the appropriate analyses. I also tested the dissociation more directly and added a Bayesian hypothesis test to measure the strength of the evidence for a dissociation. Results provided strong evidence for a dissociation (i.e., crossover interaction) between effects of speech and of emotion. Because the duplex-mechanism account predicts this dissociation between speech effects (interference by process) and emotion effects (attentionaldiversion) whereas the unitary account does not, Marsh et al.’s data support the duplex-mechanism account. However, to show that this dissociation is robust, researchers are advised to replicate this dissociation in an adversarial registered report.

Keywords
short-term memory, irrelevant speech, serial recall, auditory distraction
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-200447 (URN)10.15626/mp.2019.1635 (DOI)
Available from: 2022-01-05 Created: 2022-01-05 Last updated: 2022-01-07Bibliographically approved
Eklund, R., Gerdfeldter, B. & Wiens, S. (2021). The early but not the late neural correlate of auditory awareness reflects lateralized experiences. Neuropsychologia, 158, Article ID 107910.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The early but not the late neural correlate of auditory awareness reflects lateralized experiences
2021 (English)In: Neuropsychologia, ISSN 0028-3932, E-ISSN 1873-3514, Vol. 158, article id 107910Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Theories disagree as to whether it is the early or the late neural correlate of awareness that plays a critical role in phenomenal awareness. According to recurrent processing theory, early activity in primary sensory areas corresponds closely to phenomenal awareness. In support, research with electroencephalography found that in the visual and somatosensory modality, an early neural correlate of awareness is contralateral to the perceived side of stimulation. Thus, early activity is sensitive to the perceived side of visual and somatosensory stimulation. Critically, it is unresolved whether this is true also for hearing. In the present study (N = 26 students), Bayesian analyses showed that the early neural correlate of awareness (auditory awareness negativity, AAN) was stronger for contralateral than ipsilateral electrodes whereas the late correlate of auditory awareness (late positivity, LP) was not lateralized. These findings demonstrate that the early but not the late neural correlate of auditory awareness reflects lateralized experiences. Thus, these findings imply that AAN is a more suitable NCC than LP because it correlates more closely with lateralized experiences.

Keywords
auditory, consciousness, auditory awareness negativity, late positivity, lateralization
National Category
Psychology Neurosciences
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-197048 (URN)10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2021.107910 (DOI)000672326100011 ()34090867 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2021-09-27 Created: 2021-09-27 Last updated: 2022-02-25Bibliographically approved
Szychowska, M. & Wiens, S. (2021). Visual load effects on the auditory steady state responses to 20-, 40-, and 80-Hz amplitude-modulated tones. Physiology & Behavior, 228, Article ID 113240.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Visual load effects on the auditory steady state responses to 20-, 40-, and 80-Hz amplitude-modulated tones
2021 (English)In: Physiology & Behavior, ISSN 0031-9384, Vol. 228, article id 113240Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Ignoring background sounds while focusing on a visual task is a necessary ability in everyday life. If attentional resources are shared between modalities, processing of task-irrelevant auditory information should become attenuated when attentional capacity is exhausted by visual demands. According to earlyfilter theory, top-down attenuation of auditory responses is possible at various stages of the auditory pathway through multiple recurrent loops. Furthermore, the adaptive filtering model of selective attention suggests that filtering occurs early when concurrent visual tasks are demanding (e.g., high load) and late when tasks are easy (e.g., low load). This study examined effects of visual load on auditory steady state responses (ASSRs) to determine where in the auditory pathway the filtering occurs. Subjects performed a visual task with three levels of load (no, low, and high) while ignoring task-irrelevant sounds. The auditory stimuli were 500-Hz tones amplitude-modulated at 20 Hz, 40 Hz, or 80 Hz to target different processing stages of the auditory pathway. Results from bayesian analyses suggest that ASSRs are unaffected by visual load. These findings also suggest that attentional resources are modality specific and that the attentional filter of auditory processing does not vary with visual task demands.

Keywords
crossmodal attention, auditory steady state responses, early-filter model, visual load, task difficulty, amplitude-modulated tone
National Category
Applied Psychology Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-184770 (URN)10.1016/j.physbeh.2020.113240 (DOI)000596850000026 ()33188789 (PubMedID)
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2015-01181
Available from: 2020-09-04 Created: 2020-09-04 Last updated: 2022-02-25Bibliographically approved
Eklund, R., Gerdfeldter, B. & Wiens, S. (2020). Is auditory awareness negativity confounded by performance?. Consciousness and Cognition, 83, Article ID 102954.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Is auditory awareness negativity confounded by performance?
2020 (English)In: Consciousness and Cognition, ISSN 1053-8100, E-ISSN 1090-2376, Vol. 83, article id 102954Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Research suggests that the electrophysiological correlates of consciousness are similar in hearing as in vision: the auditory awareness negativity (AAN) and the late positivity (LP). However, from a recently proposed signal-detection perspective, these correlates may be confounded by performance, as the strength of the internal responses differs between aware and unaware trials. Here, we tried to apply this signal-detection approach to correct for performance in an auditory discrimination and detection task (N = 28). A large proportion of subjects had to be excluded because even a small response bias distorted the correction. For the remaining subjects, the correction mainly increased noise in the measurement. Furthermore, the signal-detection approach is theoretically problematic because it may isolate post-perceptual processes and eliminate awareness-related activity. Therefore, we conclude that AAN and LP are not confounded by performance and that the contrastive analysis identifies both as correlates of awareness.

Keywords
auditory awareness negativity, late positivity, consciousness, pitch discrimination, controlling for performance
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-185445 (URN)10.1016/j.concog.2020.102954 (DOI)000556804400007 ()32485343 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2020-10-12 Created: 2020-10-12 Last updated: 2022-02-25Bibliographically approved
Szychowska, M. & Wiens, S. (2020). Visual load does not decrease the auditory steady‐state response to 40‐Hz amplitude‐modulated tones. Psychophysiology, 57(12), Article ID e13689.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Visual load does not decrease the auditory steady‐state response to 40‐Hz amplitude‐modulated tones
2020 (English)In: Psychophysiology, ISSN 0048-5772, E-ISSN 1469-8986, Vol. 57, no 12, article id e13689Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The auditory pathway consists of multiple recurrent loops of afferent and efferent connections that extend from the cochlea up to the prefrontal cortex. The early-filter theory proposes that these loops allow topdown filtering of early and middle latency auditory responses. Furthermore, the adaptive filtering model suggests that filtering of irrelevant auditory stimuli should start lower in the pathway during more demanding tasks. If so, the 40-Hz auditory steady state responses (ASSRs) to irrelevant sounds should be affected by top-down crossmodal attention to a visual task, and effects should vary with the load of the visual task. Because few studies have examined this possibility, we conducted two preregistered studies that manipulated visual load (Study 1: N = 43, Study 2: N = 45). Study 1 used two levels (low and high), and Study 2 used four levels (no, low, high, and very high). Subjects were asked to ignore a 500-Hz taskirrelevant tone that was amplitude-modulated to evoke 40-Hz ASSRs. Results from Bayesian analyses provided moderate to extreme support for no effect of load (or of task) on ASSRs. Results also supported no interaction with time (i.e., over blocks, over minutes, or with changes in ASSRs that were synchronized with the onset of the visual stimuli). Further, results provided moderate support for no correlation between effects of load and working memory capacity. Because the present findings support the robustness of ASSRs against manipulations of crossmodal attention, they are not consistent with the adaptive filtering model.

Keywords
crossmodal attention, EEG, early-filter theory, task difficulty, envelope following response
National Category
Applied Psychology Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-184769 (URN)10.1111/psyp.13689 (DOI)000570168400001 ()
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2015-01181
Available from: 2020-09-04 Created: 2020-09-04 Last updated: 2022-02-25Bibliographically approved
Eklund, R. & Wiens, S. (2019). Auditory awareness negativity is an electrophysiological correlate of awareness in an auditory threshold task. Consciousness and Cognition, 71, 70-78
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Auditory awareness negativity is an electrophysiological correlate of awareness in an auditory threshold task
2019 (English)In: Consciousness and Cognition, ISSN 1053-8100, E-ISSN 1090-2376, Vol. 71, p. 70-78Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

One theory of visual awareness proposes that electrophysiological activity related to awareness occurs in primary visual areas approximately 200 ms after stimulus onset (visual awareness negativity: VAN) and in fronto-parietal areas about 300 ms after stimulus onset (late positivity: LP). Although similar processes might be involved in auditory awareness, only sparse evidence exists for this idea. In the present study, we recorded electrophysiological activity while subjects listened to tones that were presented at their own awareness threshold. The difference in electrophysiological activity elicited by tones that subjects reported being aware of versus unaware of showed an early negativity about 200 ms and a late positivity about 300 ms after stimulus onset. These results closely match those found in vision and provide convincing evidence for an early negativity (auditory awareness negativity: AAN), as well as an LP. These findings suggest that theories of visual awareness are also applicable to auditory awareness.

Keywords
awareness, consciousness, auditory, electroencephalography, threshold, auditory awareness negativity, late positivity
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-169269 (URN)10.1016/j.concog.2019.03.008 (DOI)000466834200006 ()30928900 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2019-06-11 Created: 2019-06-11 Last updated: 2022-03-23Bibliographically approved
Wiens, S., Szychowska, M., Eklund, R. & van Berlekom, E. (2019). Cascade and no-repetition rules are comparable controls for the auditory frequency mismatch negativity in oddball tasks. Psychophysiology, 56(1), Article ID e13280.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Cascade and no-repetition rules are comparable controls for the auditory frequency mismatch negativity in oddball tasks
2019 (English)In: Psychophysiology, ISSN 0048-5772, E-ISSN 1469-8986, Vol. 56, no 1, article id e13280Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The mismatch negativity (MMN) has been widely studied with oddball tasks to index processing of unexpected auditory change. The MMN is computed as the difference of deviant minus standard and is used to capture the pattern violation by the deviant. However, this oddball MMN is confounded because the deviant differs physically from the standard and is presented less often. To improve measurement, the same tone as the deviant is presented in a separate condition. This control tone is equiprobable with other tones and is used to compute a corrected MMN (deviant minus control). Typically, the tones are in random order except that consecutive tones are not identical (no-repetition rule). In contrast, a recent study on frequency MMN presented tones in a regular up-and-down sequence (cascade rule). If the cascade rule is detected more easily than the no-repetition rule, there should be a lower risk of a confounding MMN within the cascade condition. However, in previous research, the cascade and no-repetition conditions differed not only in the regularity of the tone sequence but also in number of tones, frequency range, and proportion of tones. We controlled for these differences to isolate effects of regularity in the tone sequence. Results of our preregistered analyses provided moderate evidence (BF01>6) that the corrected MMN did not differ between cascade and no-repetition conditions. These findings imply that no-repetition and cascade rules are processed similarly and that the no-repetition condition provides an adequate control in frequency MMN.

Keywords
cascade, mismatch negativity, N1, neural adaptation, no-repetition, oddball
National Category
Psychology Neurosciences
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-163511 (URN)10.1111/psyp.13280 (DOI)000453565300009 ()30246255 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2019-01-07 Created: 2019-01-07 Last updated: 2022-03-23Bibliographically approved
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ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0003-4531-4313

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