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Sanae Yoshimoto, Mariko Uchida-Ota, Tatsuto Takeuchi; Effect of light level on the reference frames of visual motion processing. Journal of Vision 2014;14(13):6. doi: 10.1167/14.13.6.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
It is empirically known that some action-related visual tasks, which may rely on the construction of spatiotopic coordinates, are not well conducted under mesopic vision. The aim of this study was to clarify the effect of light level on the reference frame, such as retinotopic and spatiotopic coordinate bases, associated with visual motion processing. For this purpose, we used a phenomenon called visual motion priming in which the perceived direction of a directionally ambiguous test stimulus is influenced by the moving direction of a priming stimulus. Previous studies have shown that negative and positive motion priming are conspicuously observed in retinotopic and spatiotopic coordinates, respectively. In the experiments, participants made a saccade after the termination of the priming stimulus and judged the perceived direction of the test stimulus presented subsequently in retinotopic or spatiotopic coordinates at different light levels. We found that in retinotopic coordinates, negative motion priming was observed at all light levels. In spatiotopic coordinates, positive motion priming was observed at photopic and scotopic light levels, whereas the strength of motion priming was greatly reduced at mesopic light levels. These results were robust to the change in the luminance contrast or the saccadic eye movement per se. Different spatiotemporal properties of cones and rods at mesopic light levels may disturb the construction of a spatiotopic representation of motion, which leads to the disappearance of visual motion priming in spatiotopic coordinates during mesopic vision.
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