Correlations, feature-binding and population coding in primary visual cortex

Huw D.R. Golledge, Stefano Panzeri*, Fashan Zheng, Gianni Pola, Jack W. Scannell, Dimitrios V. Giannikopoulos, Roger J. Mason, Martin J. Tovée, Malcolm P. Young

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


To test the hypothesis that correlated neuronal activity serves as the neuronal code for visual feature binding, we applied information theory techniques to multiunit activity recorded from pairs of VI recording sites in anaesthetised cats while presenting either single or separate bar stimuli. We quantified the roles of firing rates of individual channels and of cross-correlations between recording sites in encoding of visual information. Between 89 and 96% of the information was carried by firing rates; correlations contributed 4-11% extra information. The distribution across the population of either correlation strength or correlation information did not co-vary systematically with changes in perception predicted by Gestalt psychology. These results suggest that firing rates, rather than correlations, are the main element of the population code for feature binding in primary visual cortex.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1045-1050
Number of pages6
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - May 2003
Externally publishedYes


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