Parvocellular cell

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Not to be confused with Parvocellular neurosecretory cell.
This article is about the lateral geniculate nucleus cell. For other uses, see Parvocellular (disambiguation).
Neuron: Parvocellular cell
NeuroLex ID nifext_43

Parvocellular cells, also called P-cells, are neurons located within the parvocellular layers of the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) of the thalamus. "Parvus" means "small" in Latin, and the name "parvocellular" refers to the small size of the cell compared to the larger magnocellular cells. Phylogenetically, parvocellular neurons are more modern than magnocellular ones.[citation needed]

Input to cells[edit]

Schematic diagram of the primate LGN.

The parvocellular neurons of the visual system receive their input from midget cells, a type of retinal ganglion cell, whose axons are exiting the optic tract. These synapses occur in one of the four dorsal parvocellular layers of the lateral geniculate nucleus. The information from each eye is kept separate at this point, and continues to be segrated until processing in the visual cortex. The electrically-encoded visual information leaves the parvocellular cells via relay cells in the optic radiations, traveling to the primary visual cortex layer 4C-β. The parvocellular neurons are sensitive to color,[1] and are more capable of discriminating fine details than their magnocellular counterparts. Parvocellular cells have greater spatial resolution, but lower temporal resolution, than the magnocellular cells.

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