Extrastriate cortical activity reflects segmentation of motion into independent sources

G. Caplovitz, P. Tse
2011 Journal of Vision  
Retinotopic cortex a b s t r a c t Identical local image motion signals can arise from countless object motions in the world. In order to resolve this ambiguity, the visual system must somehow integrate motion signals arising from different locations along an object's contour. Difficulties arise, however, because image contours can derive from multiple objects and from occlusion. Thus, correctly integrating respective objects' motion signals presupposes the specification of what counts as an
more » ... ect. Depending on how this form analysis problem is solved, dramatically different object motion percepts can be constructed from the same set of local image motions. Here we apply fMRI to investigate the mechanisms underlying the segmentation and integration of motion signals that are critical to motion perception in general. We hold the number of image objects constant, but vary whether these objects are perceived to move independently or not. We find that BOLD signal in V3v, V4v, V3A, V3B and MT varies with the number of distinct sources of motion information in the visual scene. These data support the hypothesis that these areas integrate form and motion information in order to segment motion into independent sources (i.e. objects) thereby overcoming ambiguities that arise at the earliest stages of motion processing.
doi:10.1167/11.11.724 fatcat:vz6rgjydszdrfhzezgw7pxgbme