Space-Time Receptive Fields of Visual Neurons

by Izumi Ohzawa,

indicates MPEG animation file.
indicates Acrobat (PDF) slide file.
indicates PostScript (PS) slide file.
For viewing PDF files, free Acrobat Readers are available from the Adobe Systems Web site.

Modern Views and Measurements of Visual Receptive Fields


Traditionally, the receptive field of a neuron is defined as the area of visual field within which visual stimulation influences neural responses. This classical notion no longer provides an adequate framework for understanding visual receptive fields. We must consider an additional dimension of time, and define receptive fields in the joint domain of space and time. For many cells in the visual cortex, there is no such thing as a unique spatial receptive field. Slides, animations here attempt to demonstrate this fact in an intuitively obvious manner.

For a written introductory material on this subject, please read our review paper (on-line version available): Receptive-field dynamics in the central visual pathways (TINS 1995) by DeAngelis, Ohzawa, and Freeman.


Overview and Summary LGN Cells (lateral geniculate nucleus) Simple Cells (primary visual cortex) Complex Cells (primary visual cortex) Binocularity and Stereopsis (primary visual cortex)

Return to teaching resources page