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Neuron. 2001 Apr;30(1):263-74.

Prediction of orientation selectivity from receptive field architecture in simple cells of cat visual cortex.

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Department of Neurobiology and Physiology, Northwestern University, 2153 North Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208, USA.


From the intracellularly recorded responses to small, rapidly flashed spots, we have quantitatively mapped the receptive fields of simple cells in the cat visual cortex. We then applied these maps to a feedforward model of orientation selectivity. Both the preferred orientation and the width of orientation tuning of the responses to oriented stimuli were well predicted by the model. Where tested, the tuning curve was well predicted at different spatial frequencies. The model was also successful in predicting certain features of the spatial frequency selectivity of the cells. It did not successfully predict the amplitude of the responses to drifting gratings. Our results show that the spatial organization of the receptive field can account for a large fraction of the orientation selectivity of simple cells.

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