Receptive field structure in cortical area 3b of the alert monkey

TitleReceptive field structure in cortical area 3b of the alert monkey
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsDiCarlo, JJ, Johnson, KO
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Pagination167 - 178
Date Published01/2002
KeywordsAction Potentials, Afferent, Animals, Brain Mapping, Evoked Potentials, Haplorhini, Models, Neurological, Neurons, Orientation, Reproducibility of Results, Skin, Somatosensory, Somatosensory Cortex

More than 350 neurons with fingerpad receptive fields (RFs) were studied in cortical area 3b of three alert monkeys. Random dot patterns, which contain all stimulus patterns with equal probability, were scanned across these RFs at three velocities and eight directions to reveal the RFs’ spatial and temporal structure. Area 3b RFs are characterized by three components: (1) a single, central excitatory region of short duration, (2) one or more inhibitory regions, also of short duration, that are adjacent to and nearly synchronous with the excitation, and (3) a region of inhibition that overlaps the excitation partially or totally and is temporally delayed with respect to the first two components. As a result of these properties, RF spatial structure depends on scanning direction but is virtually unaffected by changes in scanning velocity. This RF characterization, which is derived solely from responses to scanned random-dot patterns, predicts a neuron's responses to random patterns accurately, as expected, but it also predicts orientation sensitivity and preferred orientation measured with a scanned bar. Both orientation sensitivity and the ratio of coincident inhibition (number 2 above) to excitation are stronger in the supra- and infragranular layers than in layer IV.

    Short TitleBehavioural Brain Research
    Refereed DesignationRefereed