What is a peripheral receiving field

What is the definition of a reception area?

Short answer
A receiving field is an area in which the stimulation leads to the response of a particular sensory neuron.

background
A reception field is often functionally characterized by electrophysiological experiments. During these experiments, a specific area of ​​the body is stimulated: z. B. a certain part of the field of vision is illuminated or a certain area of ​​the skin is stimulated haptically (Fig. 1) etc. It is then determined whether a neuron is responding, either stimulation (increased rate of fire) or inhibition (decreased rate of fire). The HF can be characterized by scanning several overlapping areas.

Levine and Shefner (1991) define a reception field as " Area in which the stimulation leads to the response of a particular sensory neuron ".

The RF is therefore a property of the neuron and not the stimulus.

However, this property of the neuron depends heavily on the stimulus. For example, a ganglion cell of the retina ON does not react if, for example, the red cones in the center of its receiving field in the retina are illuminated with UV light, while it reacts violently when the light is red. Your professor may have hinted at this, that is, to the close interplay of stimulus and reaction.


Fig. 1. Scheme of the receiving field (RF) of a pain in the skin.The RF is determined by the arborations of the free nerve endings in the dendritic zone of the pain receptor cell.Source: Lumen Learning