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Spatial summation in blindsight

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 June 2009

Petra Stoerig
Institut für Medizinische Psychologie, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Goethestrasse 31, D-80336 München, Germany


Spatial summation curves were determined in the circumscribed visual-field defects of five patients with blindsight. Under light-adapted conditions that favor the color-opponent system, increment thresholds for white and red targets presented on a white background were measured as a function of stimulus size which ranged from 9–110 min arc. In both normal and defective hemifields, summation was linear for the red stimuli. In contrast, the curves measured with the white stimuli showed some nonlinearity in the normal hemifield, and a pronounced eccentricity-dependent notch in the field defect. The results indicate that the neurons mediating sensitivity differ in their summation properties for wavelength and intensity information.

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