Borghuis, B.G.; Tadin, D.; Lankheet, M.J.; Lappin, J.S.; van de Grind, W.A. Temporal Limits of Visual Motion Processing: Psychophysics and Neurophysiology. Vision2019, 3, 5.
Borghuis, B.G.; Tadin, D.; Lankheet, M.J.; Lappin, J.S.; van de Grind, W.A. Temporal Limits of Visual Motion Processing: Psychophysics and Neurophysiology. Vision 2019, 3, 5.
Under optimal conditions, just 3–6 ms of visual stimulation suffices for humans to see motion. Motion perception on this time scale implies that the visual system under these conditions reliably encodes, transmits, and processes neural signals with near-millisecond precision. Motivated by in vitro evidence for high temporal precision of motion signals in the primate retina, we investigated how neuronal and perceptual limits of motion encoding relate. Specifically, we examined the correspondence between the time scale at which cat retinal ganglion cells in vivo represent motion information and temporal thresholds for human motion discrimination. The time scale for motion encoding by ganglion cells ranged from 4.6–91 ms, depended nonlinearly on temporal frequency but not on contrast. Human psychophysics revealed that minimal stimulus durations required for perceiving motion direction were similarly brief, 5.6–65 ms, similarly depended on temporal frequency but, above ~10%, not on contrast. Notably, physiological and psychophysical measurements corresponded closely throughout (r = 0.99), despite more than a 20-fold variation in both human thresholds and optimal time scales for motion encoding in the retina. These results demonstrate that neural circuits for motion vision in cortex can maintain and make use of the high temporal fidelity of the retinal output signals.
human psychophysics; apparent motion; temporal integration; cat; retina; neural coding; Hassenstein-Reichardt detector; model analysis
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