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Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 1997 Oct 29;352(1360):1449-59.

A new view of hemineglect based on the response properties of parietal neurones.

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  • 1Institute for Cognitive and Computational Sciences, Georgetown University, Washington, DC 20007-2197, USA.


Lesion studies of the parietal cortex have led to a wide range of conclusions regarding the coordinate reference frame in which hemineglect is expressed. A model of spatial representation in the parietal cortex has recently been developed in which the position of an object is not encoded in a particular frame of reference, but instead involves neurones computing basis functions of sensory inputs. In this type of representation, a nonlinear sensorimotor transformation of an object is represented in a population of units having the response properties of neurones that are observed in the parietal cortex. A simulated lesion in a basis-function representation was found to replicate three of the most important aspects of hemineglect: (i) the model behaved like parietal patients in line-cancellation and line-bisection experiments; (ii) the deficit affected multiple frames of reference; and (iii) the deficit could be object-centred. These results support the basis-function hypothesis for spatial representations and provide a testable computational theory of hemineglect at the level of single cells.

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