ON THE ORGANIZATION OF RECEPTIVE FIELDS OF ORIENTATION-SELECTIVE UNITS RECORDED IN THE FISH TECTUM
Journal of Integrative Neuroscience
Responses from two types of orientation-selective units of retinal origin (detectors of horizontal lines and detectors of vertical lines) were recorded extracellularly from their axon terminals in the medial sublamina of tectal retinorecipient layer of immobilized cyprinid fish Carassius gibelio. Excitatory and inhibitory influences across receptive fields of orientationselective units were evaluated. Positions, sizes and forms of the responsive parts of the receptive field were estimated by
... ere estimated by moving edges and flashing narrow light and dark stripes. It was shown that the orientation-selective units in fish are characterized by small responsive receptive fields with mean width of 4.8 ± 1.6 • (n = 176). The comparison of different types of orientation-selective units revealed that the responsive receptive fields of detectors of vertical lines are significantly wider (13%) than those of detectors of horizontal lines. Statistically significant difference was also found between sizes of responsive receptive fields evaluated by light and dark edges. Mean responsive receptive field width, estimated for light edges (ON responses) were wider than those evaluated for dark edges (OFF responses). Inhibition in the receptive field of orientation-selective units was evaluated on the basis of two experimental methods. Evidence that signals are not linearly summed across the receptive field was derived from experimental results. Inhibitory influences, recorded in the receptive field of orientation-selective units, always initiated inside the responsive receptive field area and spread towards the periphery. Results of the study indicate that receptive fields cannot be defined as homogeneous sensory zone driven by a linear mechanism of response generation. The receptive fields of orientation-selective units, in fish appear to be composed of subunits sensitive to the appropriately oriented stimuli.