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Sensitivity to optic flow in human cortical areas MT and MST

Smith, A. T., Wall, M. B., Williams, A. L. and Singh, Krish Devi 2006. Sensitivity to optic flow in human cortical areas MT and MST. European Journal of Neuroscience 23 (2) , pp. 561-569. 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2005.04526.x

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The macaque V5/MT complex comprises several sub-regions but little is known of their human homologues. We examined human V5/MT with fMRI in terms of specificity to optic flow stimuli, a key characteristic of macaque MST. Stimuli were large fields of moving dots, forming coherent global flow patterns. Random motion was used as a control. Retinotopic mapping was also conducted. The previously suggested existence of at least two distinct sub-regions, MT and MST, within the V5/MT complex was confirmed. Human MT is activated about equally by all moving dot patterns, including random motion, suggesting that it has little sensitivity to global flow structure. As previously described, this region shows strong signs of retinotopic organization and is only weakly activated by stimuli confined to the ipsilateral hemifield. In human MST, located immediately anterior to MT and strongly driven by ipsilateral stimuli, activation varies markedly with optic flow structure. The strongest activation is produced by complex flow that contains multiple flow components (expansion, contraction and rotation). Single components produce rather less response, while rigid translation and random motion produce less still. The results suggest that human MST is strongly specialized for encoding global flow properties, while human MT is less so.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Neuroscience and Mental Health Research Institute (NMHRI)
Uncontrolled Keywords: fMRI; human cortical area MST; human cortical area MT; motion; vision
ISSN: 0953-816X
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:06

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