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Dany V. D'Souza, Tibor Auer, Hans Strasburger, Jens Frahm, Barry B. Lee; Temporal frequency and chromatic processing in humans: An fMRI study of the cortical visual areas. Journal of Vision 2011;11(8):8. doi: 10.1167/11.8.8.
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Psychophysical sensitivity to isoluminant chromatic modulation declines at temporal frequencies beyond 4 Hz, whereas chromatically opponent cells of the afferent visual pathway (long- to middle-wavelength (L–M) cone-opponent or short-wavelength (S) cone cells) show responses at much higher temporal frequencies, indicating a central limitation in temporal processing capacity. Here, we sought to localize this limit in cortical retinotopic visual areas. We used fMRI to investigate responses of lateral geniculate nucleus and cortical visual areas in humans to isoluminant chromatic modulation as a function of temporal frequency (2–12 Hz). Our results suggest that L–M cone-opponent and S-cone signals are processed in LGN up to 12 Hz. In all visual areas except MT (middle temporal) and V3a, S-cone responses declined steeply with temporal frequency, implying that psychophysical sensitivity loss to blue–yellow modulation might occur early within these areas. While V1 showed robust L–M responses up to 12 Hz, there was a progressive falloff of responses with temporal frequency as information is transferred from V1 to higher areas (V2, V3, and V4), suggesting that, in humans, temporal limitation in perception of red–green chromatic modulation likely results from limited processing capacity of higher ventral extrastriate areas.
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