Steady-state visually evoked potentials (SSVEPs) reveal attention-like behaviour in the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster

van Swinderen, B. and Paulk, A. C. (2010). Steady-state visually evoked potentials (SSVEPs) reveal attention-like behaviour in the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster. In: ANS/AuPS 2010: 30th Annual Meeting of the Australian Neuroscience Society, in conjunction with the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Australian Physiological Society, Sydney, NSW,` Australia, (). 31 January - 2 February 2010.

Author van Swinderen, B.
Paulk, A. C.
Title of paper Steady-state visually evoked potentials (SSVEPs) reveal attention-like behaviour in the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster
Conference name ANS/AuPS 2010: 30th Annual Meeting of the Australian Neuroscience Society, in conjunction with the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Australian Physiological Society
Conference location Sydney, NSW,` Australia
Conference dates 31 January - 2 February 2010
Publication Year 2010
Sub-type Poster
Language eng
Formatted Abstract/Summary
Introduction: Correlates of visual selective attention can be measured in human EEG when subjects are presented with competing visual stimuli tagged by distinct flickering frequencies (“frequency tags”). Typically, transitions in attention are associated with changes in amplitude and coherence in the induced waveforms. How such changes relate to endogenous attentional mechanisms remains unclear. In order to investigate visual attention in a reductionist model, we have developed an
SSVEP paradigm in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster.

Methods: Local Field Potentials (LFPs) were recorded from the brains of tethered flies presented with competing flickering images on a surrounding LED arena (n > 30 flies). Spectral analyses of fly brain activity were contrasted for frequency-tagged visuals.

Results: We found central brain responses to different objects flickering simultaneously at distinct frequencies. These responses displayed temporal dynamics characteristic of attention-like states, notably when salience (novelty or heat) was associated with one or the other flickering object. In general, the amplitude of the more salient (i.e., attended) frequency was increased, and coherence between the
attended frequency and endogenous 20-30 Hz oscillations was transiently increased as well. Data from training experiments (n = 10 flies) revealed that operant learning could be restricted to fly brain activity in response to competing visual objects.

Conclusion: Our Drosophila SSVEP model offers a powerful approach to dissect fundamental mechanisms of visual selective attention. To more thoroughly explore visual selection and suppression effects in this small brain, we have developed a method of recording from multiple sites throughout successive layers of visual
processing in the fly. Together with genetic tools, this strategy should help uncover the neuroanatomy responsible for attention-like processes in the fly brain.
Subjects 1109 Neurosciences
Q-Index Code EX
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown
Additional Notes Poster number: POS-TUE-174. ANS/AuPS 2010, incorporating the Annual Meeting of the Australian Neuroscience Society and the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Australian Physiological Society.

Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: Queensland Brain Institute Publications
 
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Created: Thu, 16 Sep 2010, 15:15:27 EST by Laura McTaggart on behalf of Faculty of Science