Magnetoencephalographic evidence for non-geniculostriate visual input to human cortical area V5

I E Holliday, S J Anderson, G F Harding

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of this study was to establish whether there is non-geniculostriate input to the extrastriate motion-sensitive area V5 in humans. Responses were measured with a SQUID neuro-magnetometer to motion stimuli presented within the blind hemifield of GY, a well-documented subject with a complete absence of the left primary visual cortical area V1. The motion stimulus was a 0.5c/deg, rapidly drifting (16Hz) achromatic sinusoidal grating. With this stimulus, the magnetic responses recorded over the temporo-parieto-occipital region in normals are well modelled by localized current sources in areas V1 and V5 (Anderson, S. J. et al., Proceedings of the Royal Society, London, Series B, 1996, 263, 423-431). As a control, evoked responses were measured to a 1.0 c/deg, stationary, photometrically isoluminant red/green sinusoidal grating. With the chromatic stimulus, the principal component of the magnetic responses recorded over the occipital pole in normals is well modelled by a current source in area V1 (Fylan, F. et al., Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, 1995, 36, s1053). Both stimuli subtended 4 deg vertically by 6 deg horizontally, positioned such that the stimulus extended beyond the area of macular sparing into the lower field quadrant of the blind (or sighted) hemifield. Chromatic stimuli failed to evoked responses from GY's blind (contralateral) hemifield, consistent with there being no V1 activity in his left cortical hemisphere. However, motion stimuli did evoke responses from GY's blind hemifield, originating from a location consistent with activity in area V5. We further observed that both colour and motion stimuli evoked responses from GY's sighted (ipsilateral) hemifield. We conclude that there is non-geniculostriate input to extrastriate motion-sensitive areas in the human visual system, and that this pathway subserves the residual visual sensitivity to motion in the blind hemifield that has been demonstrated psychophysically in observer GY.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1139-1146
Number of pages8
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 1997


  • blindsight
  • colour
  • human vision
  • MEG
  • motion
  • V5


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