This meeting is open to West Coast neuroscience postdocs and PhD students. After Q&A with the speaker, we will open breakout rooms for anyone interested in staying to chat, network, or further discuss the talk.
Postdoctoral Researcher, Meister Laboratory
California Institute of Technology
Functional Architecture of Motion Direction in the Mouse Superior Colliculus
Motion vision is important in guiding animal behavior. Both the retina and the visual cortex process object motion in largely unbiased fashion: all directions are represented at all locations in the visual field. We investigate motion processing in the superior colliculus of the awake mouse by optically recording neural responses across both hemispheres. Within the retinotopic map, one finds large regions of ~500 μm size where neurons prefer the same direction of motion. This preference is maintained in depth to ~350 μm. The scale of these patches, ~30 degrees of visual angle, is much coarser than the animal’s visual resolution (~2 degrees). A global map of motion direction shows approximate symmetry between the left and right hemispheres and a net bias for upward-nasal motion in the upper visual field. The global bias suggests the SC playing an important role in defensive behavior that is essential to the animal’s survival.