The anatomical organization of the brain is such that incoming signals from different sensory modalities are initially processed in anatomically separate regions of the cortex. When these signals originate from a single event or object in the external world, it is essential that the inputs are integrated to form a coherent representation of the multisensory event. This review discusses recent data indicating that the integration of multisensory signals relies not only on anatomical convergence from sensory-specific cortices to multi-sensory brain areas but also on reciprocal influences between cortical regions that are traditionally considered as sensory-specific. These findings highlight integration mechanisms that go beyond traditional models based on a hierarchical convergence of sensory processing.
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