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Rapid adaptation of primate LGN neurons to drifting grating stimulation

Publication year 2023
Published in Journal of Neurophysiology
Authors Loïc Daumail, Brock M Carlson, Blake A Mitchell, Michele A Cox, J Westerberg, Cortez Johnson, Paul R Martin, Frank Tong, Alexander Maier, Kacie Dougherty

The visual system needs to dynamically adapt to changing environments. Much is known about the adaptive effects of constant stimulation over prolonged periods of time. However, there are open questions regarding adaptation to stimuli that are changing over time, interrupted, or repeated. Feature-specific adaptation to repeating stimuli has been shown to occur as early as primary visual cortex (V1), but there is also evidence for more generalized, fatigue-like adaptation that might occur at an earlier stage of processing. Here, we show adaptation in the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) of awake, fixating monkeys following brief (1 s) exposure to repeated cycles of a 4 Hz drifting grating. We examined the relative change of each neuron’s response across successive (repeated) grating cycles. We found that neurons from all cell classes (parvocellular, magnocellular, and koniocellular) showed significant adaptation. However, only magnocellular neurons showed adaptation when responses were averaged to a population response. In contrast to firing rates, response variability was largely unaffected. Lastly, adaptation was comparable between monocular and binocular stimulation, suggesting that rapid LGN adaptation is monocular in nature.

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