Separate training of hemispheres to perform visual discrimination in conditions of blocking of interhemisphere transmission by masking


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Abstract

Subjects were trained to discriminate three figures presented in the left field of vision and three other figures presented in the right field of vision. In these conditions, the two hemispheres usually show identical learning to discriminate the sets of stimuli because the hemispheres in healthy humans can exchange information. In the present study, training was performed in conditions in which, during presentation of stimuli, the opposite visual hemifield was covered by a mask. After training, the recognition of all six figures was compared by presenting them to the left and right visual fields. Each hemisphere recognized figures presented to the cognate hemifield but completely or very nearly failed to recognize figures learned by the other hemisphere. The mask would thus appear to block (completely or partially) the transmission of information from one hemisphere to the other. Thus, it was possible to train the hemispheres separately to recognize different sets of images in healthy subjects.

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