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Vision Res. 2000;40(27):3685-702.

Spatial and temporal receptive fields of geniculate and cortical cells and directional selectivity.

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Department of Psychology, University of California, 3210 Tolman Hall # 1650, 94720-1650, Berkeley, CA, USA.


The spatio-temporal receptive fields (RFs) of cells in the macaque monkey lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) and striate cortex (V1) have been examined and two distinct sub-populations of non-directional V1 cells have been found: those with a slow largely monophasic temporal RF, and those with a fast very biphasic temporal response. These two sub-populations are in temporal quadrature, the fast biphasic cells crossing over from one response phase to the reverse just as the slow monophasic cells reach their peak response. The two sub-populations also differ in the spatial phases of their RFs. A principal components analysis of the spatio-temporal RFs of directional V1 cells shows that their RFs could be constructed by a linear combination of two components, one of which has the temporal and spatial characteristics of a fast biphasic cell, and the other the temporal and spatial characteristics of a slow monophasic cell. Magnocellular LGN cells are fast and biphasic and lead the fast-biphasic V1 subpopulation by 7 ms; parvocellular LGN cells are slow and largely monophasic and lead the slow monophasic V1 sub-population by 12 ms. We suggest that directional V1 cells get inputs in the approximate temporal and spatial quadrature required for motion detection by combining signals from the two non-directional cortical sub-populations which have been identified, and that these sub-populations have their origins in magno and parvo LGN cells, respectively.

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