- Figure-ground activity in primary visual cortex is suppressed by anesthesia
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- Volume | Issue number
- 95 | 6
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
By means of their small receptive fields (RFs), neurons in primary visual cortex perform highly localized analyses of the visual scene, far removed from our normal unified experience of vision, Local image elements coded by the RF are put into more global context, however, by means of modulation of the responses of the V1 neurons, Contextual modulation has been shown to follow closely the perceptual interpretation of the scene as a whole, This would suggest that some aspects of contextual modulation can be recorded only in awake and perceiving animals. In this study, multi-unit activity was recorded with implanted electrodes from primary visual cortex of awake, fixating monkeys viewing textured displays in which figure and ground regions were segregated by differences in; either orientation or motion, Contextual modulation was isolated from local RF processing, by keeping RP stimulation identical across trials while sampling responses for various positions of the RF relative to figure and ground, Contextual modulation was observed to unfold spatially and temporally in a way that closely resembles the figure-ground percept, When recording was repeated, but with the animals anesthetized, the figure-ground related modulatory activity was selectively suppressed, RF tuning properties, however, remained unaffected, The results show that the modulatory activity is functionally distinct from the RF properties, V1 thus hosts distinct regimes of activity that are mediated by separate mechanisms and that depend differentially on the animal being awake or anesthetized.
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