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The Contribution of Color to Motion Processing in Macaque Middle Temporal Area

Summary: The Contribution of Color to Motion Processing in Macaque Middle
Temporal Area
Alexander Thiele,1 Karen R. Dobkins,2 and Thomas D. Albright1,3
1The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, San Diego, California 92186, 2Department of Psychology, University of California
San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093-0109, and 3Howard Hughes Medical Institute, La Jolla, California 92093-0646
The chromatic properties of an image yield strong cues for
object boundaries and thus hold the potential to facilitate the
detection of object motion. The extent to which cortical motion
detectors exploit chromatic information, however, remains a
matter of debate. To address this further, we quantified the
strength of chromatic input to directionally selective neurons in
the middle temporal area (MT) of macaque cerebral cortex
using an equivalent luminance contrast (EqLC) paradigm. This
paradigm, in which two sinusoidal gratings, one heterochro-
matic and the other achromatic, are superimposed and moved
in opposite directions, allows the sensitivity of motion detectors
to heterochromatic stimuli to be quantified and expressed rel-
ative to the benchmark of sensitivity for a luminance-defined
The results of these experiments demonstrate that the chro-


Source: Albright, Tom - Vision Center Laboratory, Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Dobkins, Karen R. - Department of Psychology, University of California at San Diego
Thiele, Alexander - School of Biology and Psychology, University of Newcastle upon Tyne


Collections: Biology and Medicine