Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract In order to characterize temporal pattern sensitivity in the cat ganglion cells, a new analysis technique by semi-Markov models which was developed in the previous papers (Tsukada et al., 1975–1977) was applied to input-output relations of the receptive-field. Three types of statistical spot stimuli positioned in the center region of receptive fields were used. Each type of stimulus has an identical histogram in the inter-stimulus intervals and therefore the same mean and variance, but different correlations between adjacent inter-stimulus intervals (Type 1, positive; Type 2, negative; and Type 3, independent processes). From the output spike trains of cat retinal ganglion cells to each stimulus, mean, variance, and histogram were computed. As the result of investigating these data, we could draw the following conclusion from the resultant output interval histograms. The receptive-field-center responses of cat ganglion cells can be classified into two groups (Types L and N) according to the difference of responsiveness to the three types of statistical spot stimuli. A Type L response has the same histogram in interspike intervals for all three stimuli, and is not sensitive to the temporal pattern, while a Type N response has three different forms depending on each type of stimulus showing high sensitivity to the temporal pattern. These results were also simulated by the Markov chain model and discussed with relation to neural coding and classification of ganglion cell types.
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