Representations of time in human frontoparietal cortex

Masamichi J Hayashi, Wietske van der Zwaag, Domenica Bueti, Ryota Kanai

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)
94 Downloads (Pure)


Precise time estimation is crucial in perception, action and social interaction. Previous neuroimaging studies in humans indicate that perceptual timing tasks involve multiple brain regions; however, whether the representation of time is localized or distributed in the brain remains elusive. Using ultra-high-field functional magnetic resonance imaging combined with multivariate pattern analyses, we show that duration information is decoded in multiple brain areas, including the bilateral parietal cortex, right inferior frontal gyrus and, albeit less clearly, the medial frontal cortex. Individual differences in the duration judgment accuracy were positively correlated with the decoding accuracy of duration in the right parietal cortex, suggesting that individuals with a better timing performance represent duration information in a more distinctive manner. Our study demonstrates that although time representation is widely distributed across frontoparietal regions, neural populations in the right parietal cortex play a crucial role in time estimation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233
JournalCommunications Biology
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018


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