Large-scale mirror-symmetry organization of human occipito-temporal object areas
We have combined functional maps of retinotopy (eccentricity and meridian mapping), object category, and motion in a group of subjects to explore the large-scale topography of higher-order object areas. Our results reveal seven consistent category-related entities situated in the occipito-temporal cortex adjoining early visual areas. These include two face-related regions, three object-related regions, and two building-related regions. Interestingly, this complex category-related pattern is organized in a large-scale dorso-ventral mirror symmetry of object category. Furthermore, correlating this pattern to the map of visual field eccentricity, we found that the entire network of areas could be related to a single and unified eccentricity map. We hypothesize that this large-scale organization points to a possible development of high-order object areas through extension and specialization of a single proto-representation.