The key difference between Optic Nerve and Optic tract is that the Optic nerve is the nerve that connects your eye to the brain while the Optic tract is a part of the visual system of our brain.
Eyes are organs of our visual system. Eyes allow vision to everyone, and it has different components. Among them, optical nerve is one component. Optic tract is another important part of the visual system of our brain, which is a continuation of the optical nerve.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Optic Nerve
3. What is Optic Tract
4. Similarities Between Optic Nerve and Optic Tract
5. Side by Side Comparison – Optic Nerve vs Optic Tract in Tabular Form
What is Optic Nerve?
The optical nerve is the nerve that locates at the back side of your eye. It performs a specific function to bring about our vision. Moreover, the special cells in the retina receive light and convert light into electrical impulses. Then the optical nerve carries these impulses to the brain to facilitate the vision.
Hence, optical nerve is the part of your eye that connects with the brain. It sends light signals to the brain and enables you to see things. Therefore, vision centers of the brain receive visual information from the retina by the optical nerve. Furthermore, the optic nerve is also a part of the central nervous system. Therefore, it is also called a cranial nerve.
What is Optic Tract?
Optic tract is a continuation of the optic nerve. Therefore, it is a part of the visual system of the brain. The optical tract has two individual components; namely, the right optical tract and left optical tract. Left optical tract carries information from the right visual field whereas the right optical tract carries the information from the left visual field.
Both optical tracts terminate at the lateral geniculate nucleus in the thalamus. The optic tract consists of fibres that come from the ipsilateral temporal hemiretina and contralateral nasal hemiretina.
What are the Similarities Between Optic Nerve and Optic Tract?
- Optic nerve and optic tract are two components of our visual system.
- Both carry visual information to the brain.
- Both Optic Nerve and Optic Tract are extremely important for the vision.
What is the Difference Between Optic Nerve and Optic Tract?
The optical nerve is the nerve which connects your eye to the brain while the optical tract is the continuation of the optical nerve. Therefore, the optical tract is a part of the visual system of the brain. This is the key difference between optic nerve and optic tract. Moreover, the optical nerve is located in the back of the eye while the optical tract is located in the brain.
Summary – Optic Nerve vs Optic Tract
Optical nerve and optical tract are two important structures of the visual system. The optical nerve is located at the back of the eye, and it continues to the optical tract in the brain. Therefore, the optical tract is a part of the visual system in the brain. There are two individual optic tracts; namely right and left optical tract. They convey visual information from the opposite visual fields. This is the difference between optical nerve and optical tract.
1.Dahl, Andrew A. “Eye Care Products & Common Types of Eye Disorders.” MedicineNet. Available here
2.“Optic Tract.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 7 July 2018. Available here
3.“Visual System.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 July 2018. Available here