The visual pathway is remarkable. When you view an object (for example, a potted plant) light rays reflected by that object enter the eye and pass through its lens. The lens projects an inverted image of the plant onto the retina at the back of the eye. Vision is generated by photoreceptors in the retina, and signals produced by rod and cone cells in the retina then leaves the eye by way of the optic nerve, and there is a partial crossing of axons at the optic chiasm. After the chiasm, the axons are called the optic tract. The optic tract wraps around the midbrain to get to the lateral geniculate nucleus, where all the axons must synapse. From there, the LGN axons fan out through the deep white matter of the brain as optic radiations. These optic radiations travel to the primary visual cortex, which curves around a deep fissure at the back of the brain. From there, signals fan out to "higher" areas of cortex that process more global aspects of the plant such as its shape, color, or motion.
The EyeCyclopedia is a collection of eye care terminology created by
practicing optometrists and ophthalmologists. The information provided is not intended
to be a substitute for regular medical care or to diagnose or treat
any medical condition, and should be used only as a supplemental source of information.
Please consult your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about your eye health.