Disappearance of grating induction at scotopic luminances.
ABSTRACT The dependence of grating induction magnitude on retinal illuminance was examined in two subjects. Grating induction magnitude, as determined using the cancellation technique of McCourt, declines monotonically with decreasing retinal illuminance, effectively disappearing at a value of 0.3-0.5 phot td. In a second experiment, sensitivity differences for test lights of 500 and 600 nm were measured as a function of background illuminance in order to gauge the luminance operating range for grating induction with respect to duplex photoreceptor function. Cancelling contrast (and hence grating induction magnitude) fell below detection threshold contrast at retinal illuminances coinciding with the transition from photopic to scotopic visual function. In a third experiment, spatial contrast sensitivity was measured using both spatially extended (10 degrees) and truncated (2 degrees) sinewave gratings at frequencies below 2 c/deg, at three values of retinal illuminance. Illuminance values corresponded to those where grating induction magnitude was, as determined from the first experiment, either maximal, intermediate or negligible. Similar to grating induction, the strength of lateral inhibition, as indexed by the slope of the low-frequency decline in contrast sensitivity, is progressively reduced with decreasing retinal illuminance, particularly for the 2 degree field. There was, however, using the same criteria, evidence of lateral inhibition at a value of retinal illuminance which did not support grating induction. The implications of these results are discussed with respect to classical brightness contrast phenomena, recent neuroanatomical and neurophysiological evidence of segregated parvo- and magnocellular mediated contrast processing systems, and with results from previous studies of the grating induction effect.
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ABSTRACT: The visibility of stationary visual phantoms and the grating induction (GI) effect were concurrently analyzed with both black and gray inspection areas (IA) using the same subjects with counterbalanced orders of measurements. Oblique inducing gratings were employed in order to compare the visibility of obliquely aligned and vertically misaligned appearances between the two phenomena. Aligned and misaligned phantom responses with a black IA were similar, whereas overall phantom visibility was severely suppressed when the IA was gray. In contrast, misaligned GI dominated with a gray IA, whereas aligned and misaligned GI responses were similar with a black IA. Phantoms appear to be related to visual mechanisms' selectively utilizing relative luminance information between the inducing grating and IA in a manner consistent with more global figural characteristics of the display (e.g., modal and amodal completion). On the other hand, GI may be predominantly due to locally operating brightness/contrast mechanisms.Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 07/2001; 8(2):278-83. · 2.61 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A horizontal grey bar that drifts horizontally across a surround of black and white vertical stripes appears to stop and start as it crosses each stripe. A dark bar appears to slow down on a black stripe, where its edges have low contrast, and to accelerate on a white stripe, where its edges have high contrast. A light grey bar appears to slow down on a white stripe and to accelerate on a black stripe. If the background luminances at the leading and trailing edges of the moving bar are the same, the bar appears to change speed, and if they are different the bar appears to change in length. A plaid surround can induce 2-D illusions that modulate the apparent direction, not just the speed, of moving squares. Thus, the motion salience of a moving edge depends critically on its instantaneous contrast against the background.Perception 01/2001; 30:785-94. · 1.31 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Principles of brain function can be disclosed by studying their limits during performance. Tactile stimuli with near-threshold intensities have been used to assess features of somatosensory processing. When stimulating fingers of one hand using near-threshold intensities, localization errors are observed that deviate significantly from responses obtained by guessing - incorrectly located stimuli are attributed more often to fingers neighbouring the stimulated one than to more distant fingers. Two hypotheses to explain the findings are proposed. The 'central hypothesis' posits that the degree of overlap of cortical tactile representations depends on stimulus intensity, with representations less separated for near-threshold stimuli than for suprathreshold stimuli. The 'peripheral hypothesis' assumes that systematic mislocalizations are due to activation of different sets of skin receptors with specific thresholds. The present experiments were designed to decide between the two hypotheses. Taking advantage of the frequency tuning of somatosensory receptors, their contribution to systematic misclocalizations was studied. In the first experiment, mislocalization profiles were investigated using vibratory stimuli with frequencies of 10, 20 and 100 Hz. Unambiguous mislocalization effects were only obtained for the 10-Hz stimulation, precluding the involvement of Pacinian corpuscles in systematic mislocalization. In the second experiment, Pacinian corpuscles were functionally eliminated by applying a constant 100-Hz vibratory masking stimulus together with near-threshold pulses. Despite masking, systematic mislocation patterns were observed rendering the involvement of Pacinian corpuscles unlikely. The results of both experiments are in favor of the 'central hypothesis' assuming that the extent of overlap in somatosensory representations is modulated by stimulus intensity.European Journal of Neuroscience 02/2011; 33(3):499-508. · 3.75 Impact Factor