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The Coding of Color, Motion, and Their Conjunction in the Human Visual Cortex

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http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84211

Seymour,  K
Department Physiology of Cognitive Processes, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons83862

Clifford,  CWG
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons84063

Logothetis,  NK
Department Physiology of Cognitive Processes, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons83797

Bartels,  A
Department Physiology of Cognitive Processes, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Seymour, K., Clifford, C., Logothetis, N., & Bartels, A. (2009). The Coding of Color, Motion, and Their Conjunction in the Human Visual Cortex. Current Biology, 19(3), 177-183. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2008.12.050.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-C5D1-9
Abstract
Background. Colour and motion serve as the prime examples of segregated processing in the visual brain, giving rise to the question how colour-motion conjunctions are represented. This problem is also known as the ‘binding problem’. Results. Human volunteers viewed visual displays containing coloured dots rotating around the centre. The dots could be red or green, and rotate clockwise or counter-clockwise, leading to four possible stimulus displays. Superimposed pairs of such stimuli provided two additional displays, each containing both colours and both directions of motion, but differing in their feature-conjunctions. We applied multivariate classifiers to voxel activation patterns obtained whilst subjects viewed such displays. Our analyses confirm the presence of directional motion information across visual cortex, and provide evidence of hue coding in all early visual areas except V5/MT+. Within each cortical area, information on colour and motion appeared to be coded in distinct sets of voxels. Furthermore, our results demonstrate the explicit representation of feature conjunctions in primary visual cortex and beyond. Conclusions. The results show that conjunctions can be de-coded from spatial activation patterns already in V1, indicating an explicit coding of conjunctions at early stages of visual processing. Our findings raise the possibility that the solution of what has been taken as the prime example of the binding problem engages neural mechanisms as early as V1.