, 2001), as well as line drawings of airplanes during fear condit

, 2001), as well as line drawings of airplanes during fear conditioning (Hamm et al., 2003). In contrast, pulvinar damage impairs rapid processing of visual threat in humans (Ward et al., 2005). A recent this website neurophysiological study reported that monkey pulvinar neurons differentially respond to various emotional expressions in photos of humans (Maior et al., 2010). This subcortical pathway, comprising the superior colliculus, pulvinar and amygdala, is also implicated in rapid processing of facial information, including gaze direction (Johnson, 2005). Newborn babies with an immature cortical system preferentially orient toward faces

with direct gaze and schematic face-like patterns (Johnson et al., 1991). Although this suggests pulvinar LY2606368 purchase involvement in processing of facial and face-like stimuli, previous neurophysiological studies used only moving dots, gratings or simple patches. Consequently, evidence that pulvinar neurons process facial stimuli has been lacking. In the present study, we investigated neuronal responses to these stimuli in the monkey pulvinar. Two adult (one female and one male) macaque monkeys (Macaca fuscata), weighing 7.2–9.5 kg, were used in this experiment. Each monkey was individually housed with food available ad libitum. The monkeys were deprived of water and received juice as a reward during

training and recording sessions. Supplemental water and vegetables were given after each day’s session. To assess the monkeys’ health, their weight was routinely monitored. The monkeys were treated in strict compliance with the United States Public Health Service Policy on Human Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, the National Institutes of Health Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, and the Guidelines for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the University of Toyama. The study had been approved by the Committee for Animal Experiments and Ethics at the University L-NAME HCl of Toyama. The monkey sat in a monkey chair 68 cm away from the center of a 19-inch computer display for behavioral tasks during the training and recording sessions in a

shielded room. The CRT monitor was set so that its center was on the same horizontal plane as the monkey’s eyes. The monkey chair was equipped with a responding button, which was positioned so that the monkey could easily manipulate it. An infrared charge-coupled device camera for eye-movement monitoring was firmly attached to the chair by a steel rod. During training and recording sessions, the monkey’s eye position was monitored with 33-ms time resolution by an eye-monitoring system (Matsuda, 1996). The juice reward was accessible to the monkey through a small spout controlled by an electromagnetic valve. A PsyScope system (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA) controlled the electromagnetic valve and sound signal, as well as the timing of outputs to the CRT monitor.

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