Uri Hasson
Human Neuroscience
Human Neuroscience

Associate Professor of Psychology and the Princeton Neuroscience Institute

Ph.D., The Weizmann Institute of Science, 2004

Research: New methods to assess shared and idiosyncratic aspects of the cortical response time courses.

Research Lab
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243 Neuroscience

Research Focus

My research focuses on developing new methods to assess both shared and idiosyncratic aspects of the cortical response time courses across individuals. These methods measure the reliability of cortical activity, within or between subjects, in response to naturalistic stimulation (e.g., free viewing of movies). Despite the seemingly uncontrolled task, some of these complex stimuli evoke highly reliable and selective responses in many brain areas, including some brain regions that often do not show much response modulation with conventional experimental protocols. What are the factors that can account for the emergence of such shared responses? Can we dissociate between neuronal processes which are shared by all people, those which are unique to a given sub-group, and those which are idiosyncratic to an individual? Moreover, can we use such shared responses for communication with other people?

My research is part of a growing trend in neuroscience towards the study of brain responses to natural real life events. Psychology and neuroscience research typically adopt a reductionist, deductive approach to study particular cognitive and neurobiological processes. Empirical research in these fields has largely resorted to abstraction and simplification in order to achieve maximal control over as many variables as possible, while isolating or randomizing other intervening or potentially confounding factors. Despite their obvious advantages and past effectiveness, such experimental protocols lack the distinctive complexity of real life. Thus, our lab attempts to develop complementary paradigms to study the neural activity that drives human behavior under natural and realistic conditions.

One line of research in the lab focuses on developing new methods for investigating how the brain integrates real life complex information over time (for details see link above to case study I). The second line of research investigates the underlying neuronal mechanism that facilitates the transfer of information between two brains in the course of real life interaction (for details see link above to case study II). Our research spans methodologies, recruiting both functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), as well as direct measurement of electrical activity using intracranial electroencephalography (iEEG) recordings.

Selected Publications

  • Regev, M., Honey, U., Hasson, U. (2013). Modality-selective and modality-invariant neural responses to spoken and written narratives. Journal of Neuroscience. Journal of Neuroscience 33(40):15978 –15988. [PDF]
  • Stephens, G., Honey, C., Hasson, U. (in-press). A place for time: the spatiotemporal structure of neural dynamics during natural audition. Journal of Neurophysiology
  • Honey, C.J., Thomson, C.R., Lerner, Y., Hasson, U. (2012) Not lost in translation: Neural responses shared across languages. Journal of Neuroscience 32(44):15277-15283. [PDF]
  • Honey, C.J., Thesen, T., Donner, T.H., Silbert, L.J., Carlson, C.E., Devinsky, O., Doyle, W.K., Rubin, N., Heeger, D.J., Hasson, U. (2012) Slow cortical dynamics and the accumulation of information over long time scales. Neuron 76:423-434. [PDF]
  • Ben-Yakov, A., Honey, C.J., Lerner, Y, Hasson, U. (2012) Loss of reliable temporal structure in event-related averaging of naturalistic stimuli. NeuroImage 63:501-506. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Honey, C.J. (2012). Future trends in neuroimaging: Neural processes as expressed within real-life contexts. NeuroImage 62:1272-1278. [PDF]
  • Mantini, D., Hasson, U., Betti, V., Perrucci, M.G., Romani, G.L., Corbetta, M., Orban, G.A., Vanduffel, W. (2012) Interspecies activity correlations reveal functional correspondence between monkey and human brain areas. Nature Methods 9(3): 277-282. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Ghazanfar, A.A., Galantucci, B., Garrod, S., Keysers, C. (2012) Brain-to-brain coupling: mechanism for creating and sharing a social world. Trends in Cognitive Science 16(2):114-121. [PDF]
  • Wang, X.H., Freeman, J., Merriam, E.P., Hasson, U., Heeger, D.J. (2012) Temporal eye movement strategies during naturalistic viewing. Journal of Vision 12(1):1-27. [PDF]
  • Lerner, Y., Honey, C.J., Silbert, LJ, Hasson, U. (2011) Topographic mapping of a hierarchy of temporal receptive windows using a narrated story. Journal of Neuroscience 31(8):2906-2915. [PDF]
  • >Stephens, G.J., Silbert, L.J., Hasson, U. (2010) Speaker-listener neural coupling underlies successful communication. Proceeding National Academy of Science USA 107(32) 14425-14430. [PDF]
  • Shepherd, S.V., Steckenfinger, S.A., Hasson, U., Ghazanfar, A.A. (2010) Human-monkey gaze correlations reveal convergent and divergent patterns of movie viewing. Current Biology 20:649-56. [PDF]
  • Brennan, J., Nir, Y., Hasson, U., Malach, R., Heeger, D.J., Pylkkänen, L. (2010) Syntactic structure building in the anterior temporal lobe during natural story listening. Brain Lang 120:163-173. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Malach, R., Heeger, D.J. (2010) Reliability of cortical activity during natural stimulation. Trends in Cognitive Science 14(1):40-48. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Avidan, G., Gelbard, H., Vallines, I., Harel, M., Minshew, N., Behrmann, M. (2009) Shared and idiosyncratic cortical activation patterns in autism revealed under continuous real-life viewing conditions. Autism Research 2(4):220-231. [PDF]
  • Humphreys, K., Hasson, U., Avidan, G., Minshew, N., and Behrmann, M. (2008) Cortical patterns of category-selective activation for faces, places and objects in adults with autism. Autism Research1, 52-63.
  • Hasson, U., Yang, E., Vallines, I., Heeger, D.J., Rubin, N. (2008) A hierarchy of temporal receptive windows in human cortex. Journal of Neuroscience 28(10):2539-2550. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Furman, O., Clark, D., Dudai, Y., Davachi, L. (2008). Enhanced intersubject correlations during movie viewing correlate with successful episodic encoding. Neuron 57:452-462. [PDF]
  • Dinstein, I., Hasson, U., Rubin, N., Heeger, D.J. (2007) Brain areas selective for both observed and executed movements. Journal of Neurophysiology 98:1415-1427. [PDF]
  • Furman, O., Dorfman, N., Hasson, U., Davachi, L., Dudai, Y. (2007) They saw a movie: Long-term memory for an extended audiovisual narrative. Learning and Memory 14:457-467. [PDF]
  • Nir, Y., Hasson, U., Levy, I., Yeshurun, Y., Malach, R. (2006) Widespread functional connectivity and fMRI fluctuations in human visual cortex in the absence of visual stimulation. NeuroImage 30:1313-1324. [PDF]
  • Golland, Y., Bentin, S., Gelbard, H., Benjamini, Y., Heller, R., Nir, Y., Hasson, U., Malach, R. (2006) Extrinsic and intrinsic systems in the posterior cortex of the human brain revealed during natural sensory stimulation. Cerebral Cortex 17:766-777. [PDF]
  • Mukamel, R., Gelbard, H., Arieli, A., Hasson, U., Fried, I., Malach, R. (2005) Coupling between neuronal firing, field potentials, and fMRI in human auditory cortex. Science 309:951-954. [PDF]
  • Avidan, G., Hasson, U., Malach, R., Behrmann, M. (2005) Detailed exploration of face-related processing in congenital prosopagnosia: 2. Functional neuroimaging findings. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 17(7):1150-1167. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Nir, Y., Levy, I., Fuhrmann, G., Malach, R. (2004) Intersubject synchronization of cortical activity during natural vision. Science 303:1634-1640. [PDF]
  • Levy, I., Hasson, U., Malach, R. (2004) One picture is worth at least a million neurons. Current Biology 14(11):996-1001. [PDF]
  • Levy, I., Hasson, U., Harel, M., Malach, R. (2004) Functional analysis of the periphery effect in human building related areas. Human Brain Mapping 22, 15-26. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Harel, M., Levy, I., Malach, R. (2003) Large-scale mirror-symmetry organization of human occipito-temporal object areas. Neuron 37:1027-1041. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Avidan, G., Deouell, L.Y., Bentin, S., Malach, R. (2003) Face-selective activation in a congenital prosopagnosic subject. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 15(3):419-431. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Levy, I., Behrmann, M., Hendler, T., Malach, R. (2002) Eccentricity bias as an organizing principle for human high-order object areas. Neuron 34:479-490. [PDF]
  • Malach, R., Levy, I., Hasson, U. (2002) The topography of high-order human object areas. Trends in Cognitive Science 6(4):176-184. [PDF]
  • Avidan, G., Hasson, U., Hendler, T., Zohary, E., Malach, R. (2002) Analysis of the neuronal selectivity underlying low fMRI signals. Current Biology 12(12):964-972.[PDF]
  • Levy, I., Hasson, U., Avidan, G., Hendler, T., Malach, R. (2001) Center-periphery organization of human object areas. Nature Neuroscience 4(5):533-539. [PDF]
  • Hasson, U., Hendler, T., Ben Bashat, D., Malach, R. (2001) Vase or face? A neural correlate of shape-selective grouping processes in the human brain. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 13(6):744-753. [PDF]
  • Stephens, G., Honey, C., Hasson, U. (2013). A place for time: the spatiotemporal structure of neural dynamics during natural audition. Journal of Neurophysiology, 110: 2019-2016. [PDF]