Crowding is a profound loss of discriminability of visual features, when a target stimulus is surrounded by distractors. Numerous studies of human perception have characterized how crowding depends on the properties of a visual display. Yet, there is limited understanding of how and where stimulus information is lost in the visual system under crowding. Here, we show that macaque monkeys exhibit perceptual crowding for target orientation that is similar to humans. We then record from neuronal populations in monkey primary visual cortex (V1). These populations show an appreciable loss of information about target orientation in the presence of distractors, due both to divisive and additive modulation of responses to targets by distractors. Our results show that spatial contextual effects in V1 limit the discriminability of visual features and can contribute substantively to crowding.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)