Effects of feedback projections from area 18 layers 2/3 to area 17 layers 2/3 in the cat visual cortex

Susana Martinez-Conde, Javier Cudeiro, Kenneth L. Grieve, Rosa Rodriguez, Casto Rivadulla, Carlos Acuña

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    In the absence of a direct geniculate input, area 17 cells in the cat are nevertheless able to respond to visual stimuli because of feedback connections from area 18. Anatomic studies have shown that, in the cat visual cortex, layer 5 of area 18 projects to layer 5 of area 17, and layers 2/3 of area 18 project to layers 2/3 of area 17. What is the specific role of these connections? Previous studies have examined the effect of area 18 layer 5 blockade on cells in area 17 layer 5. Here we examine whether the feedback connections from layers 2/3 of area 18 influence the orientation tuning and velocity tuning of cells in layers 2/3 of area 17. Experiments were carded out in anesthetized and paralyzed cats. We blocked reversibly a small region (300 μm radius) in layers 2/3 of area 18 by iontophoretic application of GABA and recorded simultaneously from cells in layers 2/3 of area 17 while stimulating with oriented sweeping bars. Area 17 cells showed either enhanced or suppressed visual responses to sweeping bars of various orientations and velocities during area 18 blockade. For most area 17 cells, orientation bandwidths remained unaltered, and we never observed visual responses during blockade that were absent completely in the preblockade condition. This suggests that area 18 layers 2/3 modulate visual responses in area 17 layers 2/3 without fundamentally altering their specificity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2667-2675
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Neurophysiology
    Volume82
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 1999

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