The principal objective of this project is the continuation of our research on the neural basis of face processing. We plan to explore further the ability of patients with defective recognition of face identity to recognize facial expressions.
we aim at uncovering the factors that account for this, and which, in turn, might shed light on the normal mechanisms for the recognition of faces. We will also investigate whether face agnostics can generate facial expressions normally. In a second line of studies, we attempt to validate the idea that the unusually high degree of visual """"""""ambiguity"""""""" in faces (as defined by similarities in local and global shapes and overall configuration) largely explains the """"""""special"""""""" status of faces as a class of stimuli. Another set of studies will explore the ability of face agnostics to recognize entities other than faces that also require identification at a unique level, e.g., unique landscapes and buildings. We will continue to explore the phenomenon of nonconscious face recognition in face agnostic patients. The significance of the studies outlined under this project ties directly into the objectives specified for Memory and Language. In particular, the studies will contribute to our understanding of the neural mechanisms that subserve learning and recognition in humans, at systems level. In this project, the emphasis will be on learning and recognition processes that are responsible for disambiguating entities at the most subordinate level of taxonomy, i.e., the individual exemplar level. Faces are the quintessential instance of such stimuli and as such they warrant special investigation. These studies are also important in the potential consolidation and expansion of knowledge regarding the ability of the brain to learn and to recognize at a nonconscious, covert level. In addition to the value of such knowledge to further understanding of the neural underpinnings of learning and memory, such information will provide a basis for developing behavioral management programs tailored to the needs of patients with visual recognition disorders.

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University of Iowa
Iowa City
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Mehta, Sonya; Inoue, Kayo; Rudrauf, David et al. (2016) Segregation of anterior temporal regions critical for retrieving names of unique and non-unique entities reflects underlying long-range connectivity. Cortex 75:1-19
Immordino-Yang, Mary Helen; Yang, Xiao-Fei; Damasio, Hanna (2016) Cultural modes of expressing emotions influence how emotions are experienced. Emotion 16:1033-9
Scherer, Aaron M; Taber-Thomas, Bradley C; Tranel, Daniel (2015) A neuropsychological investigation of decisional certainty. Neuropsychologia 70:206-13
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Philippi, Carissa L; Tranel, Daniel; Duff, Melissa et al. (2015) Damage to the default mode network disrupts autobiographical memory retrieval. Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci 10:318-26
Guzmán-Vélez, Edmarie; Tranel, Daniel (2015) Does bilingualism contribute to cognitive reserve? Cognitive and neural perspectives. Neuropsychology 29:139-50
Derksen, B J; Duff, M C; Weldon, K et al. (2015) Older adults catch up to younger adults on a learning and memory task that involves collaborative social interaction. Memory 23:612-24
Kumaran, Dharshan; Warren, David E; Tranel, Daniel (2015) Damage to the Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex Impairs Learning from Observed Outcomes. Cereb Cortex 25:4504-18
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Hannula, Deborah E; Tranel, Daniel; Allen, John S et al. (2015) Memory for items and relationships among items embedded in realistic scenes: disproportionate relational memory impairments in amnesia. Neuropsychology 29:126-38

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