Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 117-126

First online:

Long-distance feedback projections to area V1: Implications for multisensory integration, spatial awareness, and visual consciousness

  • Simon ClavagnierAffiliated withUniversité Claude Bernard Lyon 1
  • , Arnaud FalchierAffiliated withUniversité Claude Bernard Lyon 1
  • , Henry KennedyAffiliated withUniversité Claude Bernard Lyon 1 Email author 


It is generally agreed that information flow through the cortex is constrained by a hierarchical architecture. Recent experimental evidence suggests that projections descending the hierarchy and targeting the primary visual cortex (area V1) may play an essential role in perceptual processes. We have, therefore, reexamined feedback projections to area V1, using retrograde tracer injections in this area. In addition to well-known areas, quantification of labeling in higher cortical areas reveals a number of hitherto unknown long-distance feedback connections originating from auditory (A1), multisensory (STP) cortices, but also from a perirhinal area (36). These feedback projections from advanced cortical stations, a global feature shared by areas that belong to the ventral visual stream, could play an important role in early multisensory integration and spatial awareness and could provide the physical substrate for the involvement of area V1 in visual consciousness.