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Vision Res. 1982;22(5):531-44.

The orientation and direction selectivity of cells in macaque visual cortex.


Quantitative data are presented on the orientation and direction specificity of the responses of cells in macaque monkey striate cortex. There is a bimodal distribution of direction-specific and nondirection-specific cells, with similar orientation tuning in each class. Cells range in orientation bandwidth at half amplitude from 6 degrees to 360 degrees (i.e. no orientation tuning), with a median near 40 degrees. Foveal-parafoveal and simple-complex subsamples show similar ranges of orientation bandwidths as well as similar medians (the bandwidths being somewhat broader than those found in cat cortex). The foveal subsample and a high-spatial-frequency subsample have more horizontal and vertical optimal orientations than oblique ones. Most cells show inhibition to some orientations, as well as excitation to others. Minimum-response orientations are generally less than 90 degrees from the optimal orientation--indicating maximum inhibition adjacent to the excitatory orientations. Three simple receptive field models are shown to differ in their abilities to account for these results.

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