Color Information Processing in Higher Brain Areas

  • Hidehiko Komatsu
  • Naokazu Goda
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5646)


Significant color signal transformation occurs in the primary visual cortex and neurons tuned to various direction in the color space are generated. The resulting multi-axes color representation appears to be the basic principle of color representation throughout the visual cortex. Color signal is conveyed through the ventral stream of cortical visual pathway and finally reaches to the inferior temporal (IT) cortex. Lesion studies have shown that IT cortex plays critical role in color vision. Color discrimination is accomplished by using the activities of a large number of color selective IT neurons with various properties. Both discrimination and categorization are important aspects of our color vision, and we can switch between these two modes depending on the task demand. IT cortex receives top-down signal coding the task and this signal adaptively modulates the color selective responses in IT cortex such that neural signals useful for the ongoing task is efficiently selected.


Color Vision Lateral Geniculate Nucleus Color Discrimination Color Stimulus Ongoing Task 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    Maunsell, J.H., Newsome, W.T.: Visual processing in monkey extrastriate cortex. Annu. Rev. Neurosci. 10, 363–401 (1987)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Komatsu, H.: Mechanisms of central color vision. Curr. Opin. Neurobiol. 8, 503–508 (1998)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Solomon, S.G., Lennie, P.: The machinery of colour vision. Nat. Rev. Neurosci. 8, 276–286 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Heywood, C.A., Gaffan, D., Cowey, A.: Cerebral achromatopsia in monkeys. Eur. J. Neurosci. 7, 1064–1073 (1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Buckley, M.J., Gaffan, D., Murray, E.A.: Functional double dissociation between two inferior temporal cortical areas: perirhinal cortex versus middle temporal gyrus. J. Neurophysiol. 77, 587–598 (1997)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Huxlin, K.R., Saunders, R.C., Marchionini, D., Pham, H.A., Merigan, W.H.: Perceptual deficits after lesions of inferotemporal cortex in macaques. Cereb. Cortex 10, 671–683 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Komatsu, H., Ideura, Y., Kaji, S., Yamane, S.: Color selectivity of neurons in the inferior temporal cortex of the awake macaque monkey. J. Neurosci. 12, 408–424 (1992)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hanazawa, A., Komatsu, H., Murakami, I.: Neural selectivity for hue and saturation of colour in the primary visual cortex of the monkey. Eur. J. Neurosci. 12, 1753–1763 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    MacLeod, D.I., Boynton, R.M.: Chromaticity diagram showing cone excitation by stimuli of equal luminance. J. Opt. Soc. Am. 69, 1183–1186 (1979)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Smith, V.C., Pokorny, J.: Spectral sensitivity of the foveal cone photopigments between 400 and 500 nm. Vision Res. 15, 161–171 (1975)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Lennie, P., Krauskopf, J., Sclar, G.: Chromatic mechanisms in striate cortex of macaque. J. Neurosci. 10, 649–669 (1990)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Wachtler, T., Sejnowski, T.J., Albright, T.D.: Representation of color stimuli in awake macaque primary visual cortex. Neuron 37, 681–691 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Kiper, D.C., Fenstemaker, S.B., Gegenfurtner, K.R.: Chromatic properties of neurons in macaque area V2. Vis. Neurosci. 14, 1061–1072 (1997)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Zeki, S.: The representation of colours in the cerebral cortex. Nature 284, 412–418 (1980)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Conway, B.R., Moeller, S., Tsao, D.Y.: Specialized color modules in macaque extrastriate cortex. Neuron 56, 560–573 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Matsumora, T., Koida, K., Komatsu, H.: Relationship between color discrimination and neural responses in the inferior temporal cortex of the monkey. J. Neurophysiol. 100, 3361–3374 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    MacAdam, D.L.: Visual sensitivities to color differences in daylight. J. Opt. Soc. Am. 32, 247–274 (1942)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Miller, E.K., Cohen, J.D.: An integrative theory of prefrontal cortex function. Annu. Rev. Neurosci. 24, 167–202 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Koida, K., Komatsu, H.: Effects of task demands on the responses of color-selective neurons in the inferior temporal cortex. Nat. Neurosci. 10, 108–116 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Freedman, D.J., Riesenhuber, M., Poggio, T., Miller, E.K.: A comparison of primate prefrontal and inferior temporal cortices during visual categorization. J. Neurosci. 23, 5235–5246 (2003)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hidehiko Komatsu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Naokazu Goda
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.National Institute for Physiological SciencesOkazakiJapan
  2. 2.The Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI)OkazakiJapan

Personalised recommendations