On the Understanding of Visual Cortex
The description of functional groupings among retinal ganglion cells and geniculate relay cells has obvious implications for the understanding of the visual cortex; for the cortex, like other visual centers, is likely to bear a strong imprint of the retina. Many of the intriguing aspects of the physiology of cells in the visual cortex, however, such as their orientation-selectivity, binocularity, and much of their susceptibility to visual deprivation, appear to be cortical in origin, and are not related in any predictable way to the functional grouping of ganglion cells. These “cortical” properties of cells in the visual cortex were described, and concepts of their mechanisms were developed, before the description of ganglion cell groupings. Perhaps as a consequence, and despite the many studies of Y-, X-, and W-cell activity in the visual cortex now available, a synthesis of the Y/X/W analysis of the visual cortex with earlier concepts of its organization has been slow to develop.
KeywordsVisual Cortex Receptive Field Pyramidal Cell Stellate Cell Cortical Cell
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