Mechanisms underlying decoding at 7 T: Ocular dominance columns, broad structures, and macroscopic blood vessels in V1 convey information on the stimulated eye

Amir Shmuel, Denis Chaimow, Guenter Raddatz, Kamil Ugurbil, Essa Yacoub

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

78 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent studies have demonstrated that multivariate machine learning algorithms applied to human functional MRI data can decode information segregated in cortical columns, despite the voxel size being large relative to the width of columns. The mechanism by which low spatial resolution imaging decodes information represented in a fine-scale organization is not clear. To investigate mechanisms underlying decoding signals we employed high-resolution gradient-echo BOLD functional MRI of visual area V1. We show that in addition to the fine-scale ocular dominance columns, coarse-scale structures extending over several millimeters also convey discriminative power for decoding the stimulated eye. Discriminative power is conveyed by both macroscopic blood vessels and gray matter regions. We hypothesize that gray-matter regions which drain into specific vessels may preferentially contain ocular-dominance columns biased towards one eye; the bias of a specific region thereby causing a functionally selective ocular-dominance response in the associated vessel. Our findings indicate that coarse-scale structures and macroscopic blood vessels contribute to decoding of the stimulated eye based on low-resolution multivariate data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1957-1964
Number of pages8
JournalNeuroImage
Volume49
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2010

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
All data collection was performed at CMRR. Supported by NIH grants P41 RR08079 , P30 NS057091 , R01-MH070800 and R01-EB000331 , by the Max-Planck Society, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the Canada Research Chairs program.

Keywords

  • 7 T
  • Classification
  • Cortical columns
  • Decoding
  • Functional MRI
  • High-resolution
  • Multivariate analysis
  • Ocular dominance
  • Striate cortex
  • Ultra high-field
  • V1
  • Visual cortex
  • fMRI

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