Microstructural properties of the vertical occipital fasciculus explain the variability in human stereoacuity

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Hiroki OishiKaoru Amano

Abstract

Stereopsis is a fundamental visual function that has been studied extensively. However, it is not clear why depth discrimination (stereoacuity) varies more significantly among people than other modalities. Previous studies have reported the involvement of both dorsal and ventral visual areas in stereopsis, implying that not only neural computations in cortical areas but also the anatomical properties of white matter tracts connecting those areas can impact stereopsis. Here, we studied how human stereoacuity relates to white matter properties by combining psychophysics, diffusion MRI (dMRI), and quantitative MRI (qMRI). We performed a psychophysical experiment to measure stereoacuity and, in the same participants, we analyzed the microstructural properties of visual white matter tracts on the basis of two independent measurements, dMRI (fractional anisotropy, FA) and qMRI (macromolecular tissue volume; MTV). Microstructural properties along the right vertical occipital fasciculus (VOF), a major tract connecting dorsal and ventral visual areas, were highly correlated with measures of stereoacuity. This result was consistent for both FA and MTV, suggesting that the behavioral-structural relationship reflects differences in neural ...Continue Reading

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Related Concepts

Neural Networks (Anatomic)
Psychophysics
Visual Acuity
Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Cerebellar White Matter
Body Regions
Depth Perception
Fanconi Anemia
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Persons

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