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Paul V. McGraw, Declan J. McKeefry, David Whitaker, Chara Vakrou; Positional adaptation reveals multiple chromatic mechanisms in human vision. Journal of Vision 2004;4(7):8. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/4.7.8.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Precortical color vision is mediated by three independent opponent or cardinal mechanisms that linearly combine receptoral outputs to form L/M, S/(L+M), and L+M channels. However, data from a variety of psychophysical and physiological experiments indicate that chromatic processing undergoes a reorganization away from the basic opponent model. Frequently, this post-opponent reorganization is viewed in terms of the generation of multiple “higher order” chromatic mechanisms, tuned to a wide variety of axes in color space. Moreover, adaptation experiments have revealed that the synthesis of these mechanisms occurs at a level in the cortex following the binocular integration of the inputs from each eye. Here we report results from an experiment in which the influence of chromatic adaptation on the perceived visual location of a test stimulus was explored using a Vernier alignment task. The results indicate that not only is positional information processed independently within the L/M, S/(L+M), and L+M channels, but that when adapting and test stimuli are extended to non-cardinal axes, the existence of multiple chromatically tuned mechanisms is revealed. Most importantly, the effects of chromatic adaptation on this task exhibit little interocular transfer and have rapid decay rates, consistent with chromatic as opposed to contrast adaptation. These findings suggest that the reorganization of chromatic processing may take place earlier in the visual pathway than previously thought.
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