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Review
, 4, 311-336

A Tale of Two Visual Systems: Invariant and Adaptive Visual Information Representations in the Primate Brain

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Review

A Tale of Two Visual Systems: Invariant and Adaptive Visual Information Representations in the Primate Brain

Yaoda Xu. Annu Rev Vis Sci.

Abstract

Visual information processing contains two opposite needs. There is both a need to comprehend the richness of the visual world and a need to extract only pertinent visual information to guide thoughts and behavior at a given moment. I argue that these two aspects of visual processing are mediated by two complementary visual systems in the primate brain-specifically, the occipitotemporal cortex (OTC) and the posterior parietal cortex (PPC). The role of OTC in visual processing has been documented extensively by decades of neuroscience research. I review here recent evidence from human imaging and monkey neurophysiology studies to highlight the role of PPC in adaptive visual processing. I first document the diverse array of visual representations found in PPC. I then describe the adaptive nature of visual representation in PPC by contrasting visual processing in OTC and PPC and by showing that visual representations in PPC largely originate from OTC.

Keywords: action; attention; cognition; task-driven processing; visual representation; visual working memory.

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