Categorical scaling of duration bisection in pigeons (Columba livia), mice (Mus musculus), and humans (Homo sapiens).


Journal Article

A fundamental assumption underlying research in translational neuroscience is that animal models represent many of the same neurocognitive mechanisms and decision processes used by humans. Clear demonstrations of such correspondences will be crucial to the discovery of the neurobiological underpinnings of higher-level cognition. One domain likely to support fruitful comparisons is interval timing, because humans and other animals appear to share basic similarities in their ability to discriminate the durations of events in the seconds-to-minutes range. Here, we report that in a duration-bisection procedure using a series of anchor durations ranging from 2 through 5 s, pigeon, mouse, and human subjects classified a given signal duration as subjectively shorter than an adjacent, physically shorter signal duration when the two durations lay on opposite sides of a putative category boundary. These bisection reversals provide strong evidence for continuity of temporal cognition across a wide range of vertebrate species.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Penney, TB; Gibbon, J; Meck, WH

Published Date

  • November 2008

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 19 / 11

Start / End Page

  • 1103 - 1109

PubMed ID

  • 19076481

Pubmed Central ID

  • 19076481

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1467-9280

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0956-7976

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2008.02210.x


  • eng