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Neural Bases of Stereopsis across Visual Field of the Alert Macaque Monkey

By et al. Jean-Baptiste Durand


Left and right retinal images of an object seen by the 2 eyes can occupy slightly disparate horizontal and/or vertical locations. The role of horizontal disparity (HD) in stereoscopic vision is well established, but the functional contribution of vertical disparity (VD) remains unclear. Various psychophysical studies have shown that HD and VD are used differently by the visual system depending on their location in the visual field, whether near the center of gaze or more peripheral. We show this horizontal/vertical distinction at the cellular level in monkey primary visual cortex (area V1). The range of VD encoding is reduced in central but not in the peripheral representation of the visual field. Moreover, neurons respond selectively to particular combinations of both types of disparities depending on the coded orientation as predicted by the disparity energy model. The preferred orientations of neurons near the fovea present a vertical bias that is well suited for stereopsis based on HD selectivity alone. In the periphery, instead, preferred orientations are radially biased, which allows a peripheral detector to convey the same depth signal based on either HD or VD. Such an organization has functional implications in both the perceptual and oculomotor domains

Topics: central and peripheral V1, disparity energy model
Year: 2007
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