Neurology And Neurosurgery Essay

1587 words - 6 pages

Neurology and Neurosurgery

Neurology Overview

Although our primary interest is with the Medial
Temporal Lobe, also called the V5 area, a discussion of the
entire motion perception pathway is instructive. Motion
perception actually begins with the specialized visual
receptors in the retina known as M-cells (from the Latin word
magnus, for large). As the name implies, the M-cells are
relatively large, located in the peripheral retina, and
respond quickly to transient visual stimulation making them
ideally suited for motion detection. By contrast, P-cells are
smaller, located in the fovea, react more slowly to stimuli,
and are suited to fine-detail vision. Impulses from the
retina then travel via the optic nerve to the optic chiasm
where fibers of the optic nerve from the inner (nasal) half
of each retina cross while those from the outside (temporal)
half of each retina stay on the same side. This partial
crossing is a feature of mammals, whereas for most
vertebrates below mammals, all the fibers cross. It must be
pointed out that no motion processing is actually done in the
optic chiasm. About 20% of the axons leaving the optic chiasm
go to the Superior Colliculus, which is responsible for
certain eye movements and spatial localization. The
remaining 80% of the axons go to the Lateral Geniculate
Nucleus, LGN (Schiffman, 2000, p. 71-73).

The LGN represents the next motion processing step
after the M-cells in the retina. The Magnocellular Division
of the LGN specifically processes the impulses from the M-
cells in the retina and is uniquely suited to distinguishing
small contrasts between light and dark areas thereby
enhancing three-dimensionality and motion effects (Schiffman,
2000, p. 78). The Parvocellular path that receives its
inputs from the P-cells, is important for detecting the
disparity from the left and right eyes and is therefore key
to depth perception and distance judgment (Kalat, 2004, p.
172). From the LGN, impulses go to the Primary Visual Cortex
(also called V1) where three specialized cell types (Simple,
Complex, and Hyper Complex) process stimulations as to their
orientation, length, motional speed and direction. Impulses
are further processed in the V2 area in terms of shape and
form, in the V3 area for detail acuity plus some additional
shape and form processing, the V4 area for color information
(Schiffman, 2000, p. 74), and the Medial Superior Temporal
(MST) and the Medial Temporal (MT), also called the V5 area
(Kalat, 2004. P. 171-172). The MST also receives impulses
relating to eye movement and using a form of feedback
processing, it accounts for the near constant movement of the
eyes themselves and differentiates that information from the
actual object movement. The MT area proper is more involved
with the processing of continuous motion. To illustrate the
differences between the MT and the MST, we can use...

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