Hue selectivity in human visual cortex revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging

Ichiro Kuriki, Pei Sun, Kenichi Ueno, Keiji Tanaka, Kang Cheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


The variability of color-selective neurons in human visual cortex is considered more diverse than cone-opponent mechanisms. We addressed this issue by deriving histograms of hue-selective voxels measured using fMRI with a novel stimulation paradigm, where the stimulus hue changed continuously. Despite the large between-subject difference in hue-selective histograms, individual voxels exhibited selectivity for intermediate hues, such as purple, cyan, and orange, in addition to those along cone-opponent axes. In order to rule the possibility out that the selectivity for intermediate hues emerged through spatial summation of activities of neurons selectively responding to cone-opponent signals, we further tested hue-selective adaptations in intermediate directions of cone-opponent axes, by measuring responses to 4 diagonal hues during concurrent adaptation to 1 of the 4 hues. The selective and unidirectional reduction in response to the adapted hue lends supports to our argument that cortical neurons respond selectively to intermediate hues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4869-4884
Number of pages16
JournalCerebral Cortex
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec


  • Color vision
  • Functional MRI
  • Hue selectivity
  • Human visual cortex
  • Population histogram
  • fMRI adaptation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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