Topological Shape Changes Weaken the Innate Defensive Response to Visual Threat in Mice

  • Yan HuangEmail author
  • Lei Li
  • Kun Dong
  • Hongsi Tang
  • Qingning Yang
  • Xianglian Jia
  • Yundan Liao
  • Wenbo Wang
  • Zhen Ren
  • Lin Chen
  • Liping WangEmail author
Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

Understanding the primitives of visual perception is a fundamental question in the study of vision. To address this question, a theory of topology-based functional hierarchy in visual perception has been proposed [1, 2]. This theory suggests that the extraction of topological properties (TPs) serves as the starting point of object perception. The TP of a figure is the holistic identity which remains constant across various smooth shape-changing transformations of an image [2]. For example, the shape of a rubber sheet can be changed through bending and twisting without changing its TP as long as the sheet does not tear. The number of holes in a geometrical object is a TP because it is retained during such rubber-sheet deformations. Thus the TP of an object is thought to be a basic attribute that is crucial for the stability of perception from variable visual input and is processed with priority during visual perception [2]. The “early topological perception” hypothesis was...



The work was supported by the Shenzhen Science and Technology Research Funding Program, China (JCYJ20170818161400180 and JCYJ20180508152336419), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81425010, 31630031, and 31971072), and the Key Laboratory of Brain Connectome of Guangdong Province, China (2017B030301017).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Supplementary material

12264_2019_454_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (61 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 61 kb)


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Copyright information

© Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, CAS 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Brain Cognition and Brain Disease Institute (BCBDI), Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences; Shenzhen-Hong Kong Institute of Brain Science-Shenzhen Fundamental Research Institutions, Guangdong Key Lab of Brain ConnectomicsShenzhenChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.State Key Laboratory of Brain and Cognitive Science, Institute of Biophysics, CASUniversity of the CASBeijingChina

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