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Michael A. Crognale; Development, maturation, and aging of chromatic visual pathways: VEP results. Journal of Vision 2002;2(6):2. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/2.6.2.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
It has been argued that the development and aging of the different achromatic and chromatic visual pathways may proceed independently. We review here the evidence for such independent changes with particular emphasis on electrophysiological results. Changes in chromatic and achromatic visual processing throughout the life span were studied using visual evoked potentials (VEPs). VEPs were recorded in response to the presentation of patterns designed to preferentially stimulate achromatic and S-(L+M) and (L–M) chromatic mechanisms. Recordings were made in subjects aged 1 week to 90+ years.
Longitudinal measurements were obtained from several infants and cross-sectional measurements were obtained from infants and older subjects. Responses to achromatic reversing patterns at low spatial frequencies appeared early and changed rapidly. Latencies of the achromatic reversal response decreased to mature values within the first 12–15 weeks of life. Responses to chromatic pattern onsets, however, appeared later (L–M: 4 weeks; S: 6–8 weeks) and changed continuously throughout the first year of life. Chromatic waveforms from 1 year to puberty appeared inverted relative to the adult waveform. The waveforms did not appear adultlike until about 12–14 years of age.
The latencies of the major negative component of the adult response reached a minimum around 17–18 years of age. Throughout the remainder of the life span, VEP latencies steadily increased and amplitudes slightly decreased. Latencies of responses to chromatic pattern onsets increased more rapidly than latencies to moderate contrast achromatic pattern reversals.
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