Skip to main content


We're creating a new version of this page. See preview

  • Oral presentation
  • Open Access

Sparse coding models demonstrate some non-classical receptive field effects

BMC Neuroscience201011 (Suppl 1) :O21

  • Published:


  • Receptive Field
  • Nonlinear Effect
  • Field Effect
  • Field Model
  • Functional Model
Non-classical receptive field (nCRF) effects include several response properties in V1 neurons not explained by a linear-nonlinear (LN) receptive field model, but instead requiring significant interactions between V1 neurons. Using a sparse coding model [1, 2] and bar and grating stimuli, simulated physiology experiments were carried out that replicated several nCRF phenomena reported previously in neurophysiology experiments. These include: end-stopping [3] (Fig. 1), contrast invariance of orientation tuning [4] (Fig. 2), radius, orientation, and contrast tunings of surround suppression [5, 6] (Fig. 3, 4, 5). The results suggest that a sparse coding model can explain many of the nonlinear effects in V1 cells, and is therefore a reasonable candidate for a functional model of striate cortex.
Figure 1
Figure 1

End-stopping. Comparison with a LN model.

Figure 2
Figure 2

Contrast invariance of orientation tuning.

Figure 3
Figure 3

Surround suppression at different contrasts.

Figure 4
Figure 4

Orientation tuning of surround suppression.

Figure 5
Figure 5

Surround orientation influences contrast tuning.

Authors’ Affiliations

Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30332, USA
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30332, USA


  1. Rozell C, Johnson D, Baraniuk R, Olshausen B: Sparse coding via thresholding and local competition in neural circuits. Neural computation. 2008, 20: 2526-2563. 10.1162/neco.2008.03-07-486.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Olshausen B, Fteld D: Sparse coding with an overcomplete basis set: A strategy employed by V1?. Vision research. 1997, 37: 3311-3325. 10.1016/S0042-6989(97)00169-7.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Bolz J, Gilbert C: Generation of end-inhibition in the visual cortex via interlaminar connections. Nature. 1986Google Scholar
  4. Skottun B, Bradley A, Sclar G, Ohzawa I, Freeman R: The effects of contrast on visual orientation and spatial frequency discrimination: a comparison of single cells and behavior. Journal of Neurophysiology. 1987, 57: 773.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Cavanaugh J, Bair W, Movshon J: Nature and interaction of signals from the receptive field center and surround in macaque V1 neurons. Journal of Neurophysiology. 2002, 88: 2530-10.1152/jn.00692.2001.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Cavanaugh J, Bair W, Movshon J: Selectivity and spatial distribution of signals from the receptive field surround in macaque V1 neurons. Journal of Neurophysiology. 2002, 88: 2547-10.1152/jn.00693.2001.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar


© Zhu and Rozell; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2010

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd.