Abstract

Recent work has demonstrated that the perirhinal cortex (PRC) supports conjunctive object representations that aid object recognition memory following visual object interference. It is unclear, however, how these representations interact with other brain regions implicated in mnemonic retrieval and how congruent and incongruent interference influences the processing of targets and foils during object recognition. To address this, multivariate partial least squares was applied to fMRI data acquired during an interference match-to-sample task, in which participants made object or scene recognition judgments after object or scene interference. This revealed a pattern of activity sensitive to object recognition following congruent (i.e., object) interference that included PRC, prefrontal, and parietal regions. Moreover, functional connectivity analysis revealed a common pattern of PRC connectivity across interference and recognition conditions. Examination of eye movements during the same task in a separate study revealed that participants gazed more at targets than foils during correct object recognition decisions, regardless of interference congruency. By contrast, participants viewed foils more than targets for incorrect object memory judgments, but only after congruent interference. Our findings suggest that congruent interference makes object foils appear familiar and that a network of regions, including PRC, is recruited to overcome the effects of interference.

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