magnocellular cell

magnocellular cell

A fast conducting neuron of the visual system which is located within the magnocellular layer of the lateral geniculate nucleus of the thalamus, so named because of its large size compared to parvocellular cells. Magnocellular cells are responsible for resolving motion and coarse outlines in the context of visual perception; they receive input from the axons of parasol cells exiting the optic tract and send their information via the optic radiations to the visual cortices, possibly modifying the signal light editing and gating via top-down control.
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It has been suggested that the level of the pituitary stalk section is the major determinant of permanent DI: the closer the lesion to the magnocellular cell bodies in the hypothalamus, the more likely that the hypothalamic cell bodies will degenerate, resulting in permanent DI.
This means that magnocellular cells are not responsible for processing the colour of a scene, and similarly they do not contribute much towards the fine spatial detail which would be crucial for recognising or identifying stimuli in the visual world.