Video_1_Fourier Motion Processing in the Optic Tectum and Pretectum of the Zebrafish Larva.AVI
In the presence of moving visual stimuli, the majority of animals follow the Fourier motion energy (luminance), independently of other stimulus features (edges, contrast, etc.). While the behavioral response to Fourier motion has been studied in the past, how Fourier motion is represented and processed by sensory brain areas remains elusive. Here, we investigated how visual moving stimuli with or without the first Fourier component (square-wave signal or missing fundamental signal) are represented in the main visual regions of the zebrafish brain. First, we monitored the larva's optokinetic response (OKR) induced by square-wave and missing fundamental signals. Then, we used two-photon microscopy and GCaMP6f zebrafish larvae to monitor neuronal circuit dynamics in the optic tectum and the pretectum. We observed that both the optic tectum and the pretectum circuits responded to the square-wave gratings. However, only the pretectum responded specifically to the direction of the missing-fundamental signal. In addition, a group of neurons in the pretectum responded to the direction of the behavioral output (OKR), independently of the type of stimulus presented. Our results suggest that the optic tectum responds to the different features of the stimulus (e.g., contrast, spatial frequency, direction, etc.), but does not respond to the direction of motion if the motion information is not coherent (e.g., the luminance and the edges and contrast in the missing-fundamental signal). On the other hand, the pretectum mainly responds to the motion of the stimulus based on the Fourier energy.