December 2006
Volume 6, Issue 13
OSA Fall Vision Meeting Abstract  |   December 2006
Toward characterizion of the complete visual signal in a patch of retina
Author Affiliations
  • Eero P. Simoncelli
    HHMI, Center for Neural Science, New York University, New York, USA
  • John W. Pillow
    The Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, UCL
  • Jon Shlens
    Systems Neurobiology, The Salk Institute
  • Liam Paninski
    Statistics Department, Columbia University
  • E. J. Chichilnisky
    Systems Neurobiology, The Salk Institute
Journal of Vision December 2006, Vol.6, 2. doi:
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      Eero P. Simoncelli, John W. Pillow, Jon Shlens, Liam Paninski, E. J. Chichilnisky; Toward characterizion of the complete visual signal in a patch of retina. Journal of Vision 2006;6(13):2. doi:

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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I'll describe our recent efforts to characterize the spiking responses of a complete network of ON and OFF parasol ganglion cells in a small patch of primate retina, using a general linear model that consists of: (1) a linear receptive field that operates on the stimulus; (2) a feedback filter that captures the effects of the neuron's own spike history; (3) a set of cross-coupling filters that capture the effects of spiking in neighboring cells; and (4) an output nonlinearity that converts the total input to an instantaneous probability of spiking. The model is closely related to the more biophysically realistic integrate-and-fire model, and can exhibit a wide array of biologically relevant dynamical behaviors, such as refractoriness, spike rate adaptation, and bursting. We have applied the model to simultaneously-recorded responses of groups of macaque ON and OFF parasol retinal ganglion cells, stimulated with a 120-Hz spatiotemporal binary white noise stimulus. We find that the model accurately describes the stimulus-driven response (PSTH), and reproduces both the autocorrelations and pairwise cross-correlations of multi-cell responses. Finally, we show that the model can be used to map functional connectivity, providing a complete description of the identity, direction and form of functionally significant connections between cells.

Simoncelli, E. P. Pillow, J. W. Shlens, J. Paninski, L. Chichilnisky, E. J. (2006). Toward characterizion of the complete visual signal in a patch of retina [Abstract]. Journal of Vision, 6(13):2, 2a,, doi:10.1167/6.13.2. [CrossRef]
 HHMI (JWP & EPS), NSF IGERT & La Jolla Interfaces in the Sciences (JS), Gatsby and The Royal Society (LP), Sloan Foundation & NEI grant 13150 (EJC)

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