Pattern-motion selectivity in the human pulvinar

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Martin Y Villeneuve
  • Rron Kupers
  • Gjedde, Albert
  • Maurice Ptito
  • Christian Casanova
On the basis of anatomical and physiological data obtained on animal models, we recently proposed that neurons in the main visual extrageniculate nuclei complex, the pulvinar, are actively involved in higher-order visual processing. Pulvinar neurons have been shown to integrate the component signals of a plaid pattern into a coherent global percept (pattern-motion selectivity). Using positron emission tomography (PET), we have investigated the possibility that the human pulvinar is also involved in plaid-defined higher-order motion integration. Plaid patterns were presented to normal observers in two conditions (coherent vs. transparent) created by varying the relative spatial frequency of the two gratings comprising the plaid. Regions of interest analysis revealed a significant activation of the pulvinar in the coherent condition supporting the notion that the human pulvinar nucleus is involved in higher-order motion processing. Plaid pattern activation was also observed in the medial temporal gyrus (area MT/V5), a motion area with strong anatomical connections to the pulvinar. These data provide the first direct evidence that the human pulvinar is involved in complex motion integration, as previously shown in animal models, and further support the existence of cortico-thalamo-cortical computational networks involved in higher-order visual processing.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)474-80
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

ID: 14946652