Duration-selectivity in right parietal cortex reflects the subjective experience of time

Journal: Journal of Neuroscience

Published: 2020-09-30

DOI: 10.1523/jneurosci.0078-20.2020

Affiliations: 4

Authors: 2

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Research Highlight

Tired brain cells distort perception of time

© Anthony Harvie/Stone/Getty Images

© Anthony Harvie/Stone/Getty Images

Our subjective perception of time is based on the stimulus of neurons in a brain region called the supramarginal gyrus.

We all experience situations when time seems to fly and other situations when it seems to drag. Now, a researcher at Osaka University and a colleague have discovered one mechanism for this elastic perception of time.

They used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to the brain activity of volunteers while they watched visual stimuli of several hundred milliseconds on a screen. Constant repetition of the stimulus at the same frequency caused the neurons to tire causing the subjects to misjudge the actual passing of time.

The researchers note that their study used stimuli of the order of order of hundreds of milliseconds and that it is not clear how it might apply to longer time frames.

Supported content

  1. The Journal of Neuroscience 40, 7749–7758 (2020). doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0078-20.2020
Institutions Share
University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), United States of America (USA) 0.67
Center for Information and Neural Networks (CiNet), Japan 0.17
Osaka University, Japan 0.17