Predictive encoding of motion begins in the primate retina

Nat Neurosci. 2021 Sep;24(9):1280-1291. doi: 10.1038/s41593-021-00899-1. Epub 2021 Aug 2.


Predictive motion encoding is an important aspect of visually guided behavior that allows animals to estimate the trajectory of moving objects. Motion prediction is understood primarily in the context of translational motion, but the environment contains other types of behaviorally salient motion correlation such as those produced by approaching or receding objects. However, the neural mechanisms that detect and predictively encode these correlations remain unclear. We report here that four of the parallel output pathways in the primate retina encode predictive motion information, and this encoding occurs for several classes of spatiotemporal correlation that are found in natural vision. Such predictive coding can be explained by known nonlinear circuit mechanisms that produce a nearly optimal encoding, with transmitted information approaching the theoretical limit imposed by the stimulus itself. Thus, these neural circuit mechanisms efficiently separate predictive information from nonpredictive information during the encoding process.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Macaca
  • Motion Perception / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Retinal Ganglion Cells / physiology*
  • Visual Pathways / physiology*