Indexed on: 06 Aug '10Published on: 06 Aug '10Published in: The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience
Recent studies of middle-wavelength-sensitive and long-wavelength-sensitive cone responses in primate primary visual cortex (V1) have challenged the view that color and form are represented by distinct neuronal populations. Individual V1 neurons exhibit hallmarks of both color and form processing (cone opponency and orientation selectivity), and many display cone interactions that do not fit classic chromatic/achromatic classifications. Comparable analysis of short-wavelength-sensitive (S) cone responses has yet to be achieved and is of considerable interest because S-cones are the basis for the primordial mammalian chromatic pathway. Using intrinsic and two-photon imaging techniques in the tree shrew, we assessed the properties of V1 layer 2/3 neurons responsive to S-cone stimulation. These responses were orientation selective, exhibited distinct spatiotemporal properties, and reflected integration of S-cone inputs via opponent, summing, and intermediate configurations. Our observations support a common framework for the representation of cone signals in V1, one that endows orientation-selective neurons with a range of chromatic, achromatic, and mixed response properties.