Categorical Representation of Visual Stimuli in the Primate Prefrontal Cortex

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Science  12 Jan 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5502, pp. 312-316
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5502.312

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The ability to group stimuli into meaningful categories is a fundamental cognitive process. To explore its neural basis, we trained monkeys to categorize computer-generated stimuli as “cats” and “dogs.” A morphing system was used to systematically vary stimulus shape and precisely define the category boundary. Neural activity in the lateral prefrontal cortex reflected the category of visual stimuli, even when a monkey was retrained with the stimuli assigned to new categories.

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