Updating an abstract
Skin conductance and neuroendocrine responses provided indices of sympathetic arousal and stress responses, respectively.Despite equivalent initial learning, stressed participants showed marked impairments in reversal learning relative to controls.
In particular, visual properties of the saccade target object are thought to be encoded into visual working memory (VWM) before the saccade.In a dynamic environment, sources of threat or safety can unexpectedly change, requiring the flexible updating of stimulus−outcome associations that promote adaptive behavior.However, aversive contexts in which we are required to update predictions of threat are often marked by stress.Participants completed an aversive learning task, in which one stimulus was probabilistically associated with an electric shock, while the other stimulus signaled safety.A day later, participants underwent an acute stress or control manipulation before completing a reversal learning task during which the original stimulus−outcome contingencies switched.We found that stress exposure led to marked deficits in updating affective responses to shifting sources of threat and that this deficit emerged from a failure to adjust learning rates to accurately reflect new patterns of aversive reinforcement.
Our findings point to stress exposure as playing a causal role in reducing affective flexibility through selective learning mechanisms and have implications for healthy and clinical populations alike.
A primary goal of translational affective science is to gain a more mechanistic understanding of how stress renders individuals vulnerable to maladaptive threat responses that lead to affective psychopathology.
Here, we examined how exposure to acute stress influences the flexible modulation of threat response using reversal learning, a canonical assay of behavioral flexibility.
In addition, the retinal locations of objects shift as the eyes rotate to change the point of regard.
These natural consequences of a foveal visual system and a moveable eye create a problem of object correspondence and continuity that has been one of the central areas of research in vision science.
Transsaccadic perception appears to depend on a mechanism of object-based masking that is observed across multiple domains of vision.