Interhemispheric Cooperation


While functional hemispheric asymmetries in information processing have been known for some time, more recent research has focussed on the specific ways in which the two cerebral hemispheres collaborate in the processing of complex stimuli. Interhemispheric cooperation may be indicated by enhanced performance when stimuli are presented tachistoscopically to both visual fields/hemispheres relative to one visual field alone. Such a “bilateral gain” has been reported for words but not pseudowords in lexical decision tasks, and has been attributed to the operation of interhemispheric cell assemblies that exist only for meaningful words with acquired cortical representations. Similarly, a bilateral gain has been reported for famous but not unfamiliar faces in face recognition tasks. In this line of research we further investigate prerequisites of interhemispheric cooperation in face perception. Particular interest is given to the role of face learning. Of further interest is the question whether interhemispheric cooperation is equally important for other person related information such as emotional expressions and personal names. Behavioural and ERP methods are used to study interhemispheric cooperation and its underlying neural correlates.

Selected Relevant Publications

Cooper, T.J., Harvey, M., Lavidor, M., & Schweinberger, S.R. (2007). Hemispheric asymmetries in image-specific and abstractive priming of famous faces: Evidence from reaction times and event-related brain potentials. Neuropsychologia, 45, 2910-2921

Frässle, S., Paulus, F.M., Krach, S., Schweinberger, S.R., Stephan, K.E., & Jansen, A. (2016). Mechanisms of hemispheric lateralization: Asymmetric interhemispheric recruitment in the face perception network. NeuroImage, 124, 977-988. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2015.09.055. (Link to PDF)

Mohr, B., Landgrebe, A., & Schweinberger, S.R. (2002). Interhemispheric cooperation for familiar but not unfamiliar face processing. Neuropsychologia, 40, 1841-1848.

Schweinberger, S.R., Baird, L., Blümler, M., Kaufmann, J.M., & Mohr, B. (2003). Interhemispheric cooperation for familiar face recognition but not for affective facial expressions. Neuropsychologia, 41, 407-414.

Kaufmann, J.M. & Schweinberger, S.R. (2003). Interhemispheric Cooperation for Face Processing. 32nd Annual Meeting of the International Neuropsychological Society (INS), Berlin, Germany, July 2003.

Schweinberger, S.R., Landgrebe, A., Mohr, B., & Kaufmann, J.M. (2002). Personal names and the human right hemisphere: An illusory link? Brain & Language, 80, 111-120.

Schweinberger, S.R., Kaufmann, J.M., & McColl, A. (2002). Famous personal names and the right hemisphere: The link keeps missing. Brain & Language, 82, 95-110.

Schweinberger, S.R., Ramsay, A.L., & Kaufmann, J.M. (2006). Hemispheric asymmetries in font-specific and abstractive priming of written personal names: Evidence from event-related brain potentials. Brain Research, 1117, 195-205.