Copyright © 2007 by the American Physiological Society. Stereoscopic vision is characterized by greater visual acuity when a background feature serves as a reference. When a reference is present, the perceived depth of an object is predominantly dependent on this reference. Neural representations of stereoscopic depth are expected to have a relative frame of reference. The conversion of absolute disparity encoded in area V1 to relative disparity begins in area V2, although the information encoded in this area appears to be insufficient for stereopsis. This study examines whether relative disparity is encoded in a higher cortical area. We recorded the responses of V4 neurons from macaque monkeys to various combinations of the absolute disparities of two features, the center patch and surrounding annulus of a dynamic random-dot stereogram. We analyzed the effects of the disparity of the surrounding annulus on the tuning for the disparity of the center patch; the tuning curves of relative-disparity-selective neurons for disparities of the center patch should shift with changes in the disparity of the surrounding annulus. Most V4 tuning curve
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