J Neurosci. 1997 Sep 15;17(18):7060-78

Functional analysis of V3A and related areas in human visual cortex

Tootell RB, Mendola JD, Hadjikhani NK, Ledden PJ, Liu AK, Reppas JB, Sereno MI, Dale AM.


Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and cortical unfolding techniques, we analyzed the retinotopy, motion sensitivity, and functional organization of human area V3A. These data were compared with data from additional human cortical visual areas, including V1, V2, V3/VP, V4v, and MT (V5). Human V3A has a retinotopy that is similar to that reported previously in macaque: (1) it has a distinctive, continuous map of the contralateral hemifield immediately anterior to area V3, including a unique retinotopic representation of the upper visual field in superior occipital cortex; (2) in some cases the V3A foveal representation is displaced from and superior to the confluent foveal representations of V1, V2, V3, and VP; and (3) inferred receptive fields are significantly larger in human V3A, compared with those in more posterior areas such as V1. However, in other aspects human V3A appears quite different from its macaque counterpart: human V3A is relatively motion-selective, whereas human V3 is less so. In macaque, the situation is qualitatively reversed: V3 is reported to be prominently motion-selective, whereas V3A is less so. As in human and macaque MT, the contrast sensitivity appears quite high in human areas V3 and V3A.

PMID: 9278542