Many neurons in the frontal eye field (FEF) and lateral intraparietal (LIP) areas of cerebral cortex are active during the visual-motor events preceding the initiation of saccadic eye movements: they respond to visual targets, increase their activity before saccades, and maintain their activity during intervening delay periods. Previous experiments have shown that the output neurons from both LIP and FEF convey the full range of these activities to the superior colliculus (SC) in the brain stem. These areas of cerebral cortex also have strong interconnections, but what signals they convey remains unknown. To determine what these cortico-cortical signals are, we identified the LIP neurons that project to FEF by antidromic activation, and we studied their activity during a delayed-saccade task. We then compared these cortico-cortical signals to those sent subcortically by also identifying the LIP neurons that project to the intermediate layers of the SC. Of 329 FEF projection neurons and 120 SC projection neurons, none were co-activated by both FEF and SC stimulation. FEF projection neurons were encountered more superficially in LIP than SC projection neurons, which is consistent with the anatomical projection of many cortical layer III neurons to other cortical areas and of layer V neurons to subcortical structures. The estimated conduction velocities of FEF projection neurons (16.7 m/s) were significantly slower that those of SC projection neurons (21.7 m/s), indicating that FEF projection neurons have smaller axons. We identified three main differences in the discharge properties of FEF and SC projection neurons: only 44% of the FEF projection neurons changed their activity during the delayed-saccade task compared with 69% of the SC projection neurons; only 17% of the task-related FEF projection neurons showed saccadic activity, whereas 42% of the SC projection neurons showed such increases; 78% of the FEF projection neurons had a visual response but no saccadic activity, whereas only 55% of the SC projection neurons had similar activity. The FEF and SC projection neurons had three similarities: both had visual, delay, and saccadic activity, both had stronger delay and saccadic activity with visually guided than with memory-guided saccades, and both had broadly tuned responses for disparity stimuli, suggesting that their visual receptive fields have a three-dimensional configuration. These observations indicate that the activity carried between parietal and frontal cortical areas conveys a spectrum of signals but that the preponderance of activity conveyed might be more closely related to earlier visual processing than to the later saccadic stages that are directed to the SC.
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|Titolo:||Comparison of cortico-cortical and cortico-collicular signals for the generation of saccadic eye movements|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2002|
|Appartiene alla tipologia:||01a Articolo in rivista|