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HIH News

Do you see what I see? Newly discovered nerve cells specifically process gaze following

I see what you see: the ability to follow the direction of others' gaze and to develop joint attention is an important basis for interacting with others. In people with autism, this ability is disturbed. Neuroscientists from the Hertie Institute for Clinical Brain Research and the University of Tübingen now report that a specific area in the brain is responsible for this task. According to the research team, nerve cells in the so-called "gaze-following patch" help us to decipher the focus of attention of others. The area is located in the posterior temporal lobe, which therefore plays a key role in controlling social interactions. The current study was published in the journal PNAS.

Please read the press release (in German only)

Image: Ingo Rappers / Hertie Institute for Clinical Brain Research