Synaptic integration by V1 neurons depends on location within the orientation map

Neuron. 2002 Dec 5;36(5):969-78. doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(02)01012-7.


Neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1) are organized into an orientation map consisting of orientation domains arranged radially around "pinwheel centers" at which the representations of all orientations converge. We have combined optical imaging of intrinsic signals with intracellular recordings to estimate the subthreshold inputs and spike outputs of neurons located near pinwheel centers or in orientation domains. We find that neurons near pinwheel centers have subthreshold responses to all stimulus orientations but spike responses to only a narrow range of orientations. Across the map, the selectivity of inputs covaries with the selectivity of orientations in the local cortical network, while the selectivity of spike outputs does not. Thus, the input-output transformation performed by V1 neurons is powerfully influenced by the local structure of the orientation map.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology
  • Animals
  • Brain Mapping*
  • Cats
  • Electrophysiology
  • Female
  • Male
  • Nerve Net / physiology
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Synapses / metabolism*
  • Visual Cortex / cytology
  • Visual Cortex / metabolism*
  • Visual Perception / physiology