Show Reference: "Flying Primates? Megabats Have the Advanced Pathway from Eye to Midbrain"

Flying Primates? Megabats Have the Advanced Pathway from Eye to Midbrain Science (New York, N.Y.), Vol. 231, No. 4743. (14 March 1986), pp. 1304-1306 by John D. Pettigrew
    abstract = {The pattern of connections between the retina and midbrain has been determined with electrophysiological and neuroanatomical methods in bats representing the two major subdivisions of the Chiroptera. Megachiropteran fruit bats (megabats), Pteropus spp., were found to have an advanced retinotectal pathway with a vertical hemidecussation of the kind previously found only in primates. In contrast, the microchiropteran bat Macroderma gigas has the "ancestral" or symplesiomorphous pattern of retinotectal connections so far found in all vertebrates except primates. In addition to linking primates and megachiropteran bats, these findings suggest that flight may have evolved twice among the mammals.},
    author = {Pettigrew, John D.},
    day = {14},
    issn = {0036-8075},
    journal = {Science (New York, N.Y.)},
    keywords = {biology, primates, sc, sc-connectivity, sc-input},
    month = mar,
    number = {4743},
    pages = {1304--1306},
    pmid = {3945827},
    posted-at = {2013-06-18 10:21:01},
    priority = {2},
    title = {Flying Primates? Megabats Have the Advanced Pathway from Eye to Midbrain},
    url = {},
    volume = {231},
    year = {1986}

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There is a distinction between two different kinds of bats: megabats and microbats. Megabats differ in size (generally), but also in the organization of their visual system. In particular, their retinotectal projections are different: while all of the retinotectal projections in microbats are contralateral, retinotectal projections in megabats are divided such that projections from the nasal part of the retina go to the ipsilateral SC and those from the peripheral part go to the contralateral SC. This is similar to primate vision.

In primates, retinotectal projections to each SC are such that each visual hemifield is mapped to one (contralateral) SC. This is in contrast with retinotectal projections in most other vertebrates, where all projections from one retina project to the contralateral SC.