Deficits of visual motion perception and optokinetic nystagmus after posterior suprasylvian lesions in the ferret (Mustela putorius furo)

Exp Brain Res. 2007 Oct;182(4):509-23. doi: 10.1007/s00221-007-1009-x. Epub 2007 Jun 26.


We recently described an area in the ferret posterior suprasylvian (PSS) cortex characterized by a high proportion of direction selective neurons. To answer the question whether area PSS subserves functions similar to cat posteromediolateral suprasylvian area (PMLS) and monkey medial temporal area (MT) we investigated the contribution of area PSS to visual motion perception and optokinetic nystagmus. Ferrets were tested on global motion detection before and after bilateral lesions involving area PSS and control lesions of other extrastriate visual areas. Following PSS lesions motion coherence thresholds were significantly increased both in pigmented and albino ferrets, whereas control lesions sparing PSS did not affect visual motion perception. Optokinetic nystagmus was strongly reduced to absent after PSS lesions. These results indicate that area PSS is crucial for global motion processing in the ferret and in that sense may be functionally equivalent to PMLS in the cat and area MT in the monkey.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Albinism, Ocular / physiopathology
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Brain Injuries / complications*
  • Brain Injuries / pathology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Color Perception / physiology
  • Discrimination, Psychological / physiology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Ferrets
  • Functional Laterality
  • Male
  • Motion Perception / physiology*
  • Nystagmus, Optokinetic / physiology*
  • Perceptual Disorders / etiology*
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Visual Cortex / injuries*
  • Visual Cortex / pathology