Intrinsic neural timescales mediate the cognitive bias of self – temporal integration as key mechanism

Angelika Wolman, Yasir Çatal, Annemarie Wolff, Soren Wainio-Theberge, Andrea Scalabrini, Abdessadek El Ahmadi, Georg Northoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Our perceptions and decisions are not always objectively correct as they are featured by a bias related to our self. What are the behavioral, neural, and computational mechanisms of such cognitive bias? Addressing this yet unresolved question, we here investigate whether the cognitive bias is related to temporal integration and segregation as mediated by the brain's Intrinsic neural timescales (INT). Using Signal Detection Theory (SDT), we operationalize the cognitive bias by the Criterion C as distinguished from the sensitivity index d’. This was probed in a self-task based on morphed self- and other faces. Behavioral data demonstrate clear cognitive bias, i.e., Criterion C. That was related to the EEG-based INT as measured by the autocorrelation window (ACW) in especially the transmodal regions dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) and default-mode network (DMN) as distinct from unimodal visual cortex. Finally, simulation of the same paradigm in a large-scale network model shows high degrees of temporal integration of temporally distinct inputs in CMS/DMN and dlPFC while temporal segregation predominates in visual cortex. Together, we demonstrate a key role of INT-based temporal integration in CMS/DMN and dlPFC including its relation to the brain's uni-transmodal topographical organization in mediating the cognitive bias of our self.

Original languageEnglish
Article number119896
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • Decision making
  • Intrinsic neural timescales
  • Self
  • Signal detection theory
  • Temporal integration and segregation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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