The dependence of response amplitude and variance of cat visual cortical neurones on stimulus contrast

D. J. Tolhurst, J. A. Movshon, I. D. Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

For neurones in the cat's striate cortex, we examined the dependence of response on the contrast of moving sinusoidal gratings. Most neurones showed a clear threshold contrast below which no response was elicited. Such thresholds presumably contribute to the animal's behavioural threshold, which should not be accounted for solely in terms of the detection of a signal in the presence of spontaneous "noise". Above threshold, the response amplitude usually increased linearly with contrast until it began to saturate at the highest contrasts. The variance of the response increased with its amplitude; this finding perhaps underlies the Weber-Fechner relation for psychophysical contrast discrimination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)414-419
Number of pages6
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Volume41
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1981

Keywords

  • Response linearity
  • Response variance
  • Visual cortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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