Manuel Esguerra mesguerr at athena.mit.edu
Fri Apr 12 16:45:55 EST 1991

Newsgroups: bionet.neuroscience
Subject: Re: Attention, Neurochemically Speaking
Summary: thalamus role in selective attention
References: <gbzvT0i00WBM824l82 at andrew.cmu.edu> <23933 at as0c.sei.cmu.edu> <40953 at netnews.upenn.edu>
Sender: mesguerr at athena.mit.edu <Manuel Esguerra>
Organization: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Keywords: thalamus, lateral geniculate,attention

Here are some papers on the possible role of thalamus in gating of
sensory input,particularly wrt selective visual attention:

Sherman, S. M., and Koch, C. (1986). The control of retinogeniculate
transmission in the mammalian lateral geniculate nucleus. Exp. Brain
Res. 63: 1-20.

Discusses the functional states (transfer and burst mode) of thalamic
cells, how they might be switched on and off, and speculates on
functional significance. 

Koch, C. (1987). The action of the corticofugal pathway on sensory
thalamic nuclei: a hypothesis. Neuroscience 23: 399-406.

The lateral geniculate is the major target of retinal cell axons, but
this nucleus actually gets a much larger input from visual cortex (10
times more fibers than from retina) via a feedback projection. This
paper proposes that activity in this projection could jack up the firing
of selected portions of the visual representation, perhaps for selective
visual attention.

Manuel Esguerra
Dept. of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
mesguerr at athena.mit.edu
esguerra at ai.mit.edu

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