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J Opt Soc Am A Opt Image Sci Vis. 2003 Dec;20(12):2216-27.

Time course of adaptation to stimuli presented along cardinal lines in color space.

Author information

1
Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky 40292, USA. rahughes@naz.edu

Abstract

Visual sensitivity is a process that allows the visual system to maintain optimal response over a wide range of ambient light levels and chromaticities. Several studies have used variants of the probe-flash paradigm to show that the time course of adaptation to abrupt changes in ambient luminance depends on both receptoral and postreceptoral mechanisms. Though a few studies have explored how these processes govern adaptation to color changes, most of this effort has targeted the L-M-cone pathway. The purpose of our work was to use the probe-flash paradigm to more fully explore light adaptation in both the L-M- and the S-cone pathways. We measured sensitivity to chromatic probes presented after the onset of a 2-s chromatic flash. Test and flash stimuli were spatially coextensive 2 degrees fields presented in Maxwellian view. Flash stimuli were presented as excursions from white and could extended in one of two directions along an equiluminant L-M-cone or S-cone line. Probes were presented as excursions from the adapting flash chromaticity and could extend either toward the spectrum locus or toward white. For both color lines, the data show a fast and slow adaptation component, although this was less evident in the S-cone data. The fast and slow components were modeled as first- and second-site adaptive processes, respectively. We find that the time course of adaptation is different for the two cardinal pathways. In addition, the time course for S-cone stimulation is polarity dependent. Our results characterize the rapid time course of adaptation in the chromatic pathways and reveal that the mechanics of adaptation within the S-cone pathway are distinct from those in the L-M-cone pathways.

PMID:
14686500
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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