August 2014
Volume 14, Issue 10
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2014
Functional parcellation of human visual cortex
Author Affiliations
  • Reza Rajimehr
    McGovern Institute for Brain Research, MIT
  • Simon Kornblith
    McGovern Institute for Brain Research, MIT
  • Robert Desimone
    McGovern Institute for Brain Research, MIT
Journal of Vision August 2014, Vol.14, 715. doi:
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      Reza Rajimehr, Simon Kornblith, Robert Desimone; Functional parcellation of human visual cortex. Journal of Vision 2014;14(10):715.

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

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Characterizing the functional organization of visual cortex is a fundamental step in understanding how visual information is processed in the brain. Despite a century's effort to map visual cortical areas, there has been no comprehensive parcellation scheme for the entire visual cortex in the human brain. Here we used functional MRI and developed a data-driven approach to cluster occipito-temporal vertices of the cortical surface based on their responses to a 90-minute natural movie stimulus. To achieve an optimal clustering, the vertices were first represented in a lower-dimensional space using the principal component analysis (PCA), then a hierarchical clustering was applied in the PCA space. The hierarchical clustering enabled us to evaluate the macro-organization of visual cortex at different spatial scales. In all levels of hierarchical clustering, the functionally-defined clusters were remarkably organized on the cortical surface. In addition to all previously-known category-selective areas, the clustering revealed many spatially-localized regions in the occipito-temporal cortex. We characterized one specific region in the lateral temporal cortex ('area LT') that was selectively activated by object motion or body action in the movie. The cortical parcellation scheme presented here could guide subsequent studies in defining the functional properties of many new cortical areas.

Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2014


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