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Functional architecture for disparity in macaque inferior temporal cortex and its relationship to the architecture for faces, color, scenes, and visual field

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Binocular disparity is a powerful depth cue for object perception. The computations for object vision culminate in inferior temporal cortex (IT), but the functional organization for disparity in IT is unknown. Here we addressed this question by measuring fMRI responses in alert monkeys to stimuli that appeared in front of (near), behind (far), or at the fixation plane. We discovered three regions that showed preferential responses for near and far stimuli, relative to zero-disparity stimuli at the fixation plane. These "near/far" disparity-biased regions were located within dorsal IT, as predicted by microelectrode studies, and on the posterior inferotemporal gyrus. In a second analysis, we instead compared responses to near stimuli with responses to far stimuli and discovered a separate network of "near" disparity-biased regions that extended along the crest of the superior temporal sulcus. We also measured in the same animals fMRI responses to faces, scenes, color, and checkerboard annuli at different visual field eccentricities. Disparity-biased regions defined in either analysis did not show a color bias, suggesting that disparity and color contribute to different computations within IT. Scene-biased regions responded preferentially to near and far stimuli (compared with stimuli without disparity) and had a peripheral visual field bias, whereas face patches had a marked near bias and a central visual field bias. These results support the idea that IT is organized by a coarse eccentricity map, and show that disparity likely contributes to computations associated with both central (face processing) and peripheral (scene processing) visual field biases, but likely does not contribute much to computations within IT that are implicated in processing color.
Journal: Journal of Neuroscience
ISSN: 0270-6474
Issue: 17
Volume: 35
Pages: 6952 - 68
Publication year:2015
BOF-publication weight:6
CSS-citation score:2
Authors from:Higher Education