Article

Confirming the role of the pupil-linked arousal system in perceptual decision-making using a dynamic sound localization task (en)

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Day / Time: 08.03.2023, 15:40-16:20
Typ: Poster
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Abstract: There is broad consensus that perceptual organisms combine sensory input with prior beliefs about the environment to make precise perceptual judgements about hidden states in the sensory world. In dynamic environments where relevant statistical properties can readily change, beliefs need to be updated constantly to remain reliable and relevant. Empirical evidence suggests that the pupil-linked locus coeruleus noradrenaline (LC-NA) arousal system is a key physiological mechanism behind this updating process. However, in the context of sound localization, it remains uncertain whether arousal-mediated belief updating can only be observed when predictions are explicitly requested and when stimuli contain visual spatial information too. We seek to close this gap by investigating the role of the pupil-linked arousal system in a dynamic sound localization task with auditory and audio-visual stimulation conditions. Preliminary results drawn from behavioural data and latent variables extracted from a Bayesian inference model provide first evidence that signatures of constant belief updating can indeed also be observed for implicit and automatic perceptual judgements. Furthermore, the process seems to create weaker beliefs based on purely auditory stimuli, but it does not strictly depend on visual spatial information.
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