Special Issue "Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing"

A special issue of Vision (ISSN 2411-5150).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2020) | Viewed by 6715

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Christian Casanova
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Visual Neuroscience Laboratory, Universite de Montreal, Montreal, QC, Canada
Interests: pulvinar; transthalamic cortical communication; visual circuits; receptive fields; visual development; cannabinoids; brain disorders; optical brain imaging; neurophysiology; neuroanatom

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There is more and more evidence that the main visual extrageniculate thalamus nucleus, the pulvinar, plays a multifaceted role in vision and that disrupted functional circuits between pulvinar and cortex contribute to the pathophysiological mechanisms of psychiatric disorders. In this Special Issue on “Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing”, we will cover major advances in pulvinar research over the past five years, with a mixture of original and review articles. The subjects may include the following:

  • Evolution of the pulvinar
  • Anatomical and functional organization of the pulvinar
  • The transthalamic cortical pathways
  • The drivers/modulators concept: is pulvinar driving or modulating the visual cortex?
  • Visual properties of pulvinar neurons
  • Visual maps in the pulvinar
  • Pulvinar and visual attention
  • Functional relationships between pulvinar and cortical areas
  • Top-down and bottom-up processes involving pulvinar
  • Pulvinar and emotions: subcortical fear pathways
  • Residual vision: involvement of pulvinar
  • What thalamic lesions can tell us about the human pulvinar?
  • Schizophrenia: the pulvinar hypothesis
  • Pulvinar and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorders
  • Imaging the pulvinar in humans and animal models
  • Modeling cortico-pulvinar neuronal interactions

If you are considering a review article, please send us a brief proposal before a full submission.

Dr. Christian Casanova
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Vision is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Visual Perception
  • Cortico-thalamic pathways
  • Extrageniculate thalamus
  • Cortical processing
  • Blindsight
  • Attention

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
Pulvinar Modulates Synchrony across Visual Cortical Areas
Vision 2020, 4(2), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4020022 - 10 Apr 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1541
Abstract
The cortical visual hierarchy communicates in different oscillatory ranges. While gamma waves influence the feedforward processing, alpha oscillations travel in the feedback direction. Little is known how this oscillatory cortical communication depends on an alternative route that involves the pulvinar nucleus of the [...] Read more.
The cortical visual hierarchy communicates in different oscillatory ranges. While gamma waves influence the feedforward processing, alpha oscillations travel in the feedback direction. Little is known how this oscillatory cortical communication depends on an alternative route that involves the pulvinar nucleus of the thalamus. We investigated whether the oscillatory coupling between the primary visual cortex (area 17) and area 21a depends on the transthalamic pathway involving the pulvinar in cats. To that end, visual evoked responses were recorded in areas 17 and 21a before, during and after inactivation of the pulvinar. Local field potentials were analyzed with Wavelet and Granger causality tools to determine the oscillatory coupling between layers. The results indicate that cortical oscillatory activity was enhanced during pulvinar inactivation, in particular for area 21a. In area 17, alpha band responses were represented in layers II/III. In area 21a, gamma oscillations, except for layer I, were significantly increased, especially in layer IV. Granger causality showed that the pulvinar modulated the oscillatory information between areas 17 and 21a in gamma and alpha bands for the feedforward and feedback processing, respectively. Together, these findings indicate that the pulvinar is involved in the mechanisms underlying oscillatory communication along the visual cortex. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing)
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Article
Neuronal Activity in the Rat Pulvinar Correlates with Multiple Higher-Order Cognitive Functions
Vision 2020, 4(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4010015 - 01 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1340
Abstract
The pulvinar, also called the lateral posterior nucleus of the thalamus in rodents, is one of the higher-order thalamic relays and the main visual extrageniculate thalamic nucleus in rodents and primates. Although primate studies report the pulvinar is engaged under attentional demands, there [...] Read more.
The pulvinar, also called the lateral posterior nucleus of the thalamus in rodents, is one of the higher-order thalamic relays and the main visual extrageniculate thalamic nucleus in rodents and primates. Although primate studies report the pulvinar is engaged under attentional demands, there are open questions about the detailed role of the pulvinar in visuospatial attention. The pulvinar provides the primary thalamic input to the posterior parietal cortex (PPC). Both the pulvinar and the PPC are known to be important for visuospatial attention. Our previous work showed that neuronal activity in the PPC correlated with multiple phases of a visuospatial attention (VSA) task, including onset of the visual stimuli, decision-making, task-relevant locations, and behavioral outcomes. Here, we hypothesized that the pulvinar, as the major thalamic input to the PPC, is involved in visuospatial attention as well as in other cognitive functions related to the processing of visual information. We recorded the neuronal activity of the pulvinar in rats during their performance on the VSA task. The task was designed to engage goal-directed, top–down attention as well as stimulus-driven, bottom–up attention. Rats monitored three possible locations for the brief appearance of a target stimulus. An approach to the correct target location was followed by a liquid reward. For analysis, each trial was divided into behavioral epochs demarcated by stimulus onset, selection behavior, and approach to reward. We found that neurons in the pulvinar signaled stimulus onset and selection behavior consistent with the interpretation that the pulvinar is engaged in both bottom–up and top–down visuospatial attention. Our results also suggested that pulvinar cells responded to allocentric and egocentric task-relevant locations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing)
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Review

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Review
The Evolution of the Pulvinar Complex in Primates and Its Role in the Dorsal and Ventral Streams of Cortical Processing
Vision 2020, 4(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4010003 - 30 Dec 2019
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 2222
Abstract
Current evidence supports the view that the visual pulvinar of primates consists of at least five nuclei, with two large nuclei, lateral pulvinar ventrolateral (PLvl) and central lateral nucleus of the inferior pulvinar (PIcl), contributing mainly to the ventral stream of cortical processing [...] Read more.
Current evidence supports the view that the visual pulvinar of primates consists of at least five nuclei, with two large nuclei, lateral pulvinar ventrolateral (PLvl) and central lateral nucleus of the inferior pulvinar (PIcl), contributing mainly to the ventral stream of cortical processing for perception, and three smaller nuclei, posterior nucleus of the inferior pulvinar (PIp), medial nucleus of the inferior pulvinar (PIm), and central medial nucleus of the inferior pulvinar (PIcm), projecting to dorsal stream visual areas for visually directed actions. In primates, both cortical streams are highly dependent on visual information distributed from primary visual cortex (V1). This area is so vital to vision that patients with V1 lesions are considered “cortically blind”. When the V1 inputs to dorsal stream area middle temporal visual area (MT) are absent, other dorsal stream areas receive visual information relayed from the superior colliculus via PIp and PIcm, thereby preserving some dorsal stream functions, a phenomenon called “blind sight”. Non-primate mammals do not have a dorsal stream area MT with V1 inputs, but superior colliculus inputs to temporal cortex can be more significant and more visual functions are preserved when V1 input is disrupted. The current review will discuss how the different visual streams, especially the dorsal stream, have changed during primate evolution and we propose which features are retained from the common ancestor of primates and their close relatives. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing)
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Review
Distinctive Spatial and Laminar Organization of Single Axons from Lateral Pulvinar in the Macaque
Vision 2020, 4(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/vision4010001 - 18 Dec 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1176
Abstract
Pulvino-cortical (PC) projections are a major source of extrinsic input to early visual areas in the macaque. From bulk injections of anterograde tracers, these are known to terminate in layer 1 of V1 and densely in the middle cortical layers of extrastriate areas. [...] Read more.
Pulvino-cortical (PC) projections are a major source of extrinsic input to early visual areas in the macaque. From bulk injections of anterograde tracers, these are known to terminate in layer 1 of V1 and densely in the middle cortical layers of extrastriate areas. Finer, single axon analysis, as reviewed here for projections from the lateral pulvinar (PL) in two macaque monkeys (n = 25 axons), demonstrates that PL axons have multiple arbors in V2 and V4, and that these are spatially separate and offset in different layers. In contrast, feedforward cortical axons, another major source of extrinsic input to extrastriate areas, are less spatially divergent and more typically terminate in layer 4. Functional implications are briefly discussed, including comparisons with the better investigated rodent brain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of the Pulvinar in Visual Processing)
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