Precise alignment of micromachined electrode arrays with V1 functional maps

J Neurophysiol. 2007 May;97(5):3781-9. doi: 10.1152/jn.00120.2007. Epub 2007 Mar 7.


Recent theoretical models of primary visual cortex predict a relationship between receptive field properties and the location of the neuron within the orientation maps. Testing these predictions requires the development of new methods that allow the recording of single units at various locations across the orientation map. Here we present a novel technique for the precise alignment of functional maps and array recordings. Our strategy consists of first measuring the orientation maps in V1 using intrinsic optical imaging. A micromachined electrode array is subsequently implanted in the same patch of cortex for electrophysiological recordings, including the measurement of orientation tuning curves. The location of the array within the map is obtained by finding the position that maximizes the agreement between the preferred orientations measured electrically and optically. Experimental results of the alignment procedure from two implementations in monkey V1 are presented. The estimated accuracy of the procedure is evaluated using computer simulations. The methodology should prove useful in studying how signals from the local neighborhood of a neuron, thought to provide a dominant feedback signal, shape the receptive field properties in V1.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Mapping*
  • Electrodes*
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Orientation
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • Visual Cortex / cytology*
  • Visual Cortex / physiology*
  • Visual Fields
  • Visual Perception / physiology*