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Tutorials: Nov 13, 2011, Shanghai, China
Main Conference: Nov 14-17, 2011, Shanghai, China
Workshops: Nov 18, 2011, Hangzhou, China
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   Final program of ICONIP2011 and book of abstracts are available now.  
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Visual Information Processing in Retinal Neurons


Pei-Ji Liang
Shanghai Jiao Tong University


Visual information processing is an important part of neural information processing. In vertebrates, visual information processing starts in the retina. The objective of this tutorial is to provide an introduction of retinal structure and functional organization of the retinal neural network.


In vertebrate retina, the most direct information pathway is the "photoreceptors -- bipolar cells -- ganglion cells (PR-BC-GC)" pathway. The GCs fire action potentials in response to environmental light changes, and these activities are further transmitted via the optic nerve fibers to the central visual part for more detailed processing. In addition to this direct pathway, retinal neuronal network also includes horizontal cells (HC) and amacrine cells (AC). HCs receive input from the PRs and provide lateral signal regulation to influence the activities of PRs and BCs, while ACs receive input from BCs and project laterally to influence BCs, GCs, and other ACs. This tutorial will be focused on the functional organization of the retinal neural network and the functional property of each type of the retinal neurons, and also provides some recent progress in understanding about the mechanism underlying retinal information processing. Both biological processes and information theory applications will be introduced.

Target Audience:

The target audience of this tutorial may include mathematician, physicist, computer scientists or engineers who are interested in visual information processing and biologically inspired computer vision.


Pei-Ji Liang is Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Her research is focused on Retinal Neural Network and Retinal Information Processing, and has been supported by National Science Foundation of China and Ministry of Science and Technology of China. She is also serving as chair of Computational Neuroscience and Neural Engineering Branch of Chinese Neuroscience Society.

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