Neural Correlates for Perception of 3D Surface Orientation from Texture Gradient

Science  11 Oct 2002:
Vol. 298, Issue 5592, pp. 409-412
DOI: 10.1126/science.1074128

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A goal in visual neuroscience is to reveal how the visual system reconstructs the three-dimensional (3D) representation of the world from two-dimensional retinal images. Although the importance of texture gradient cues in the process of 3D vision has been pointed out, most studies concentrate on the neural process based on binocular disparity. We report the neural correlates of depth perception from texture gradient in the cortex. In the caudal part of the lateral bank of intraparietal sulcus, many neurons were selective to 3D surface orientation defined by texture gradient, and their response was invariant over different types of texture pattern. Most of these neurons were also sensitive to a disparity gradient, suggesting that they integrate texture and disparity gradient signals to construct a generalized representation of 3D surface orientation.

  • * Present address: Department of Anatomy, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 3DY, UK.

  • To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: masato{at}

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