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The spatial properties of adaptation-induced distance compression

Jovanovic, Ljubica; McGraw, Paul V.; Roach, Neil W.; Johnston, Alan

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Ljubica Jovanovic

Professor of Visual Neuroscience

Professor of Vision Science

Professor of Psychology


Exposure to a dynamic texture reduces the perceived separation between objects, altering the mapping between physical relations in the environment and their neural representations. Here we investigated the spatial tuning and spatial frame of reference of this aftereffect to understand the stage(s) of processing where adaptation-induced changes occur. In Experiment 1, we measured apparent separation at different positions relative to the adapted area, revealing a strong but tightly tuned compression effect. We next tested the spatial frame of reference of the effect, either by introducing a gaze shift between adaptation and test phase (Experiment 2) or by decoupling the spatial selectivity of adaptation in retinotopic and world-centered coordinates (Experiment 3). Results across the two experiments indicated that both retinotopic and world-centered adaptation effects can occur independently. Spatial attention to the location of the adaptor alone could not account for the world-centered transfer we observed, and retinotopic adaptation did not transfer to world-centered coordinates after a saccade (Experiment 4). Finally, we found that aftereffects in different reference frames have a similar, narrow spatial tuning profile (Experiment 5). Together, our results suggest that the neural representation of local separation resides early in the visual cortex, but it can also be modulated by activity in higher visual areas.


Jovanovic, L., McGraw, P. V., Roach, N. W., & Johnston, A. (2022). The spatial properties of adaptation-induced distance compression. Journal of Vision, 22(11), Article 7.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 30, 2022
Online Publication Date Oct 12, 2022
Publication Date Oct 12, 2022
Deposit Date Oct 27, 2022
Publicly Available Date Nov 1, 2022
Journal Journal of vision
Electronic ISSN 1534-7362
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 22
Issue 11
Article Number 7
Keywords Sensory Systems, Ophthalmology
Public URL
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