Single visual neurons code opposing motion independent of direction

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Science  13 May 1983:
Vol. 220, Issue 4598, pp. 744-745
DOI: 10.1126/science.6836313


Cells in intermediate and deeper layers of the pigeon optic tectum respond best when a textured background pattern is moved in the opposite direction to a moving test spot. Complete inhibition occurs when the background moves in the same direction as the test stimulus. Most noteworthy is the invariance of this relationship over a wide range of test spot directions. These cells represent a higher level of abstraction in a motion-detecting system and may play a role in figure-ground segregation or the discrimination of the motion of an object from self-induced optical motion.