Corticocortical and thalamocortical information flow in the primate visual system

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Visual cortex in primates contains a mosaic of several dozen visual areas that collectively occupy a large fraction of cerebral cortex (∼50% in the macaque; ∼25% in humans). These areas are richly interconnected by hundreds of reciprocal corticocortical pathways that underlie an anatomically based hierarchy containing multiple processing streams. In addition, there is a complex pattern of reciprocal connections with the pulvinar, which itself contains about 10 architectonically distinct subdivisions. Information flow through these corticocortical and corticothalamic circuits is regulated very dynamically by top-down as well as bottom-up processes, including directed visual attention. This chapter evaluates current hypotheses and evidence relating to the interaction between thalamocortical and corticocortical circuitry in the dynamic regulation of information flow.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-185
Number of pages13
JournalProgress in Brain Research
StatePublished - 2005


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