The value of a third potential option or distractor can alter the way in which decisions are made between two other options. Two hypotheses have received empirical support: that a high value distractor improves the accuracy with which decisions between two other options are made and that it impairs accuracy. Recently, however, it has been argued that neither observation is replicable. Inspired by neuroimaging data showing that high value distractors have different impacts on prefrontal and parietal regions, we designed a dual route decision-making model that mimics the neural signals of these regions. Here we show in the dual route model and empirical data that both enhancement and impairment effects are robust phenomena but predominate in different parts of the decision space defined by the options' and the distractor's values. However, beyond these constraints, both effects co-exist under similar conditions. Moreover, both effects are robust and observable in six experiments.
The codes for running the mutual inhibition model, divisive normalization model, dual route model and null model can be found at:https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.k6djh9w3cBehavioural data of Experiments 1, 3 and 7 can be found at:https://datadryad.org/stash/dataset/doi:10.5061/dryad.040h9t7Behavioural data of Experiments 2, 4-6 can be found from a link provided by Gluth and colleagues (2018) at:https://osf.io/8r4fh/Behavioural and eye tracking data of Experiment 8 can be found at:https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.k6djh9w3c
Consistent patterns of distractor effects during decision makingDryad Digital Repository, 10.5061/dryad.k6djh9w3c.
Data from: A neural mechanism underlying failure of optimal choice with multiple alternativesDryad Digital Repository, 10.5061/dryad.040h9t7.
- Bolton K H Chau
- Matthew F S Rushworth
- Matthew F S Rushworth
- Matthew F S Rushworth
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Human subjects: Experiments 3, 7 and 8 were approved by ethics committee of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Experiment 1 was approved by that of University of Oxford.
- Thorsten Kahnt, Northwestern University, United States
© 2020, Chau et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Humans and other animals often violate economic principles when choosing between multiple alternatives, but the underlying neurocognitive mechanisms remain elusive. A robust finding is that adding a third option can alter the relative preference for the original alternatives, but studies disagree on whether the third option’s value decreases or increases accuracy. To shed light on this controversy, we used and extended the paradigm of one study reporting a positive effect. However, our four experiments with 147 human participants and a reanalysis of the original data revealed that the positive effect is neither replicable nor reproducible. In contrast, our behavioral and eye-tracking results are best explained by assuming that the third option’s value captures attention and thereby impedes accuracy. We propose a computational model that accounts for the complex interplay of value, attention, and choice. Our theory explains how choice sets and environments influence the neurocognitive processes of multi-alternative decision making.
Chimeric RNAs have been found in both cancerous and healthy human cells. They have regulatory effects on human stem/progenitor cell differentiation, stemness maintenance, and central nervous system development. However, whether they are present in human retinal cells and their physiological functions in the retinal development remain unknown. Based on the human embryonic stem cell-derived retinal organoids (ROs) spanning from days 0 to 120, we present the expression atlas of chimeric RNAs throughout the developing ROs. We confirmed the existence of some common chimeric RNAs and also discovered many novel chimeric RNAs during retinal development. We focused on CTNNBIP1-CLSTN1 (CTCL) whose downregulation caused precocious neuronal differentiation and a marked reduction of neural progenitors in human cerebral organoids. CTCL is universally present in human retinas, ROs, and retinal cell lines, and its loss-of-function biases the progenitor cells toward retinal pigment epithelial cell fate at the expense of retinal cells. Together, this work provides a landscape of chimeric RNAs and reveals evidence for their critical role in human retinal development.