Mapping the organization of axis of motion selective features in human area mt using high-field fmri

Jan Zimmermann, Rainer Goebel, Federico de Martino, Pierre-Francois Van de Moortele, David Feinberg, Gregor Adriany, Denis Chaimow, Amir Shmuel, Kamil Ugurbil, Essa Yacoub

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Scopus citations


Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) at high magnetic fields has made it possible to investigate the columnar organization of the human brain in vivo with high degrees of accuracy and sensitivity. Until now, these results have been limited to the organization principles of early visual cortex (V1). While the middle temporal area (MT) has been the first identified extra-striate visual area shown to exhibit a columnar organization in monkeys, evidence of MT's columnar response properties and topographic layout in humans has remained elusive. Research using various approaches suggests similar response properties as in monkeys but failed to provide direct evidence for direction or axis of motion selectivity in human area MT. By combining state of the art pulse sequence design, high spatial resolution in all three dimensions (0.8 mm isotropic), optimized coil design, ultrahigh field magnets (7 Tesla) and novel high resolution cortical grid sampling analysis tools, we provide the first direct evidence for large-scale axis of motion selective feature organization in human area MT closely matching predictions from topographic columnar-level simulations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere28716
JournalPloS one
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 7 2011


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