Cortical membrane potential dynamics and laminar firing during object motion

  • Harvey M
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When an object is introduced moving in the visual field of view, the object maps with different delays in each of the six cortical layers in many visual areas by mechanisms that are poorly understood. We combined voltage sensitive dye (VSD) recordings with laminar recordings of action potentials in visual areas 17, 18, 19 and 21 in ferrets exposed to stationary and moving bars. At the area 17/18 border a moving bar first elicited an ON response in layer 4 and then ON responses in supragranular and infragranular layers, identical to a stationary bar. Shortly after, the moving bar mapped as moving synchronous peak firing across layers. Complex dynamics evolved including feedback from areas 19/21, the computation of a spatially restricted pre-depolarization (SRP), and firing in the direction of cortical motion prior to the mapping of the bar. After 350 ms, the representations of the bar (peak firing and peak VSD signal) in areas 19/21 and 17/18 moved over the cortex in phase. The dynamics comprise putative mechanisms for automatic saliency of novel moving objects, coherent mapping of moving objects across layers and areas, and planning of catch-up saccades.




Harvey, M. A. (2009). Cortical membrane potential dynamics and laminar firing during object motion. Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience, 3.

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