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Single units within the medial terminal nucleus of the accessory optic system were
recorded and examined for their responses to a moving pattern, in both intact and
decorticated urethane-anesthetized rats. The preferred directions of motion in control
rats were mainly upward with a temporal component and downward with a nasal component.
The responses to upward motion were almost absent after cortical ablation, with most
units now preferring temporal or downward-nasal directions. These data suggest that
cortical structures modulate the directional selectivity of accessory optic neurons
in the rat.