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Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences


The perception of gender and age of unfamiliar faces is reported to vary idiosyncratically across retinal locations such that, for example, the same androgynous face may appear to be male at one location but female at another. Here we test spatial heterogeneity for the recognition of the identity of personally familiar faces in human participants. We found idiosyncratic biases that were stable within participants and that varied more across locations for low as compared to high familiar faces. These data suggest that like face gender and age, face identity is processed, in part, by independent populations of neurons monitoring restricted spatial regions and that the recognition responses vary for the same face across these different locations. Moreover, repeated and varied social interactions appear to lead to adjustments of these independent face recognition neurons so that the same familiar face is eventually more likely to elicit the same recognition response across widely separated visual field locations.



Original Citation

Visconti di Oleggio Castello M, Taylor M, Cavanagh P, Gobbini MI. Idiosyncratic, Retinotopic Bias in Face Identification Modulated by Familiarity. eNeuro. 2018;5(5):ENEURO.0054-18.2018. Published 2018 Oct 4. doi:10.1523/ENEURO.0054-18.2018