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Hinze Hogendoorn, Frans A. J. Verstraten; Decoding the motion aftereffect in human visual cortex. Journal of Vision 2011;11(11):701. doi: 10.1167/11.11.701.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
In the motion aftereffect (MAE), adapting to a moving stimulus causes a subsequently presented stationary stimulus to appear to move in the opposite direction. Recently, the neural basis of the motion aftereffect has received considerable interest, and a number of brain areas have been implicated in the generation of the illusory motion. Here, we use functional magnetic resonance imaging in combination with multivariate pattern classification to directly compare the neural activity evoked during the observation of both real and illusory motion. We show that the perceived illusory motion is not encoded in the same way as real motion in the same direction. Instead, suppression of the adapted direction of motion results in a shift of the population response of motion sensitive neurons in MT+, resulting in activation patterns that are in fact more similar to real motion in orthogonal, rather than opposite directions. Although robust motion selectivity was observed in visual areas V1, V2, V3, and V4, MAE_specific modulation of the population response was only observed in MT+. Implications for our understanding of the motion aftereffect, and models of motion perception in general, are discussed.
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