The experiments reported here address the issue of whether the pathways which extract motion from first-order and second-order spatial patterns remain separate or whether they combine at some higher level in the motion system to form a single pathway. The question is addressed by investigating the interaction of first-order and second-order stimuli in the processing of a global-motion stimulus [a variant of the task introduced by Newsome & Pare (Journal of Neuroscience, 8, 2201-2211, (1988)]. Two experimental procedures were used. The first consisted of determining the effect of the addition of dots of one type (e.g. first-order) undergoing purely random motion on the ability to extract the global-motion signal carried by dots of the other type (e.g. second-order). The second experimental procedure consisted of determining the effect of maintaining a coherent-motion signal in one type of dot, moving in the opposite direction to the global-motion direction, on the ability to extract the global-motion signal carried by dots of the other type. The dots were matched for their effectiveness in producing a global motion percept and the results for both procedures were the same. First-order dots impaired the ability to extract second-order global-motion, and second-order dots had no effect on first-order global-motion extraction. It is argued that the sensitivity of the second-order global-motion system to the first-order dots is due to the ability of the second-order local-motion detectors to detect these dots. The present results are thus interpreted as indicating that the first-order and second-order motion pathways remain separate up to and including the level in the motion system at which global-motion signals are extracted.
|Number of pages||14|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 1995|