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Menaka S. Malavita, Trichur R. Vidyasagar, Allison M. McKendrick; The effect of aging on the eccentricity dependency of orientation anisotropy of perceptual surround suppression. Journal of Vision 2021;21(1):13. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.21.1.13.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
The features of perceptual surround suppression vary with eccentricity, such that the suppression strength is increased for horizontally oriented stimuli relative to other orientations near the fovea, but is strongest for radially oriented stimuli more peripherally. Perceptual suppression also varies with age, which has been well-studied for central fixation. However, only limited data are available regarding perceptual suppression in older adults for nonfoveal vision, and none of those studies have taken orientation biases of contrast sensitivity into account. Here, we explored the effects of older age on the eccentricity dependency of orientation biases of perceptual suppression. We found increased perceptual suppression in older adults at both 6° and 15° eccentricities relative to younger adults. A main effect of the horizontal orientation bias was found at 6° and a main effect of the radial orientation bias was found at 15° in both groups. In summary, perceptual surround suppression of contrast is stronger for older adults compared with younger adults at 6° and 15° eccentricities, but retinotopic orientation anisotropies are maintained with age. This study provides new insight into parafoveal visual perception in older adults, which may be particularly important to understand the visual experience of those who depend on nonfoveal vision owing to common age-related eye diseases.
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