About this Research Topic
Vision is our most important perception, by gathering more than three-thirds of the information from our surroundings, our eyes are arguably our primary sensory organs. The visual sensation begins with retinal phototransduction and continues with parallel computations performed by neuronal circuits along the visual axis, the retinal interneuronal network, dorsal aspect of the lateral geniculate nuclei (dLGN), and the visual cortex (V1).
The retina encodes the environmental visual information primarily into two, ON and OFF, pathways which parallelly transmit changes in light intensity. Furthermore, there are dedicated pathways for encoding movement, color, contrast, direction, etc. The major players in retinal signaling are largely known, however, there are still gaps in our knowledge regarding the complex and dynamically reconfigurable neural network that performs visual encoding.
Processing and decoding the multi-layered visual information from the retina requires several subcortical and cortical brain regions. Therefore, the visual system is composed of a number of retinorecipient areas including the most studied superior colliculus (SC), dLGN, and around forty additional brain regions that partake in image-forming and/or non-image-forming visual information processing. Parallel visual pathways carrying image forming information converge to neuronal circuits hosted by the primary visual cortex (V1). The activity of V1 is then constantly monitored by downstream cortical areas to process visual information even further and to attain a pattern of cortical activity we call visual perception. But exactly these latter steps of the decoding mechanism take place is not well understood and has been the subject of immense scientific investigation.
This Research Topic aims to better understand the formation and perception of the visual code by calling for both Original Research articles and Reviews in the field of visual neuroscience, from individual cellular contributions to systems or populations of a great number of cells. In addition, we also intend to initiate a resourceful scientific conversation among researchers of various subfields of visual neuroscience including retinal, subcortical, and cortical neuroscientists.
Keywords: Visual Code, Retina, Signal Processing, Visual Cortex, Connectivity
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