Neural Interactions Underlying Visuomotor Associations in the Human Brain

Radhika Madhavan, Arjun K. Bansal, Joseph R. Madsen, Alexandra J. Golby, Travis S. Tierney, Emad N. Eskandar, William S. Anderson, Gabriel Kreiman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Rapid and flexible learning during behavioral choices is critical to our daily endeavors and constitutes a hallmark of dynamic reasoning. An important paradigm to examine flexible behavior involves learning new arbitrary associations mapping visual inputs to motor outputs. We conjectured that visuomotor rules are instantiated by translating visual signals into actions through dynamic interactions between visual, frontal and motor cortex. We evaluated the neural representation of such visuomotor rules by performing intracranial field potential recordings in epilepsy subjects during a rule-learning delayed match-to-behavior task. Learning new visuomotor mappings led to the emergence of specific responses associating visual signals with motor outputs in 3 anatomical clusters in frontal, anteroventral temporal and posterior parietal cortex. After learning, mapping selective signals during the delay period showed interactions with visual and motor signals. These observations provide initial steps towards elucidating the dynamic circuits underlying flexible behavior and how communication between subregions of frontal, temporal, and parietal cortex leads to rapid learning of task-relevant choices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4551-4567
Number of pages17
JournalCerebral Cortex
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 17 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • frontal cortex
  • human neurophysiology
  • reinforcement learning
  • visual cortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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