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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2014 Feb;24(1):133-42. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2013.08.006. Epub 2013 Nov 19.

Retinal ganglion cell maps in the brain: implications for visual processing.

Author information

1
Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, United States; Neurobiology Section in the Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, United States. Electronic address: odhande@ucsd.edu.
2
Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, United States; Neurobiology Section in the Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, United States; Department of Ophthalmology, University of California, San Diego, United States. Electronic address: ahuberman@ucsd.edu.

Abstract

Everything the brain knows about the content of the visual world is built from the spiking activity of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). As the output neurons of the eye, RGCs include ∼20 different subtypes, each responding best to a specific feature in the visual scene. Here we discuss recent advances in identifying where different RGC subtypes route visual information in the brain, including which targets they connect to and how their organization within those targets influences visual processing. We also highlight examples where causal links have been established between specific RGC subtypes, their maps of central connections and defined aspects of light-mediated behavior and we suggest the use of techniques that stand to extend these sorts of analyses to circuits underlying visual perception.

PMID:
24492089
PMCID:
PMC4086677
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2013.08.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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