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Saccadic inhibition reveals the timing of automatic and voluntary signals in the human brain

Bompas, Aline ORCID: and Sumner, Petroc ORCID: 2011. Saccadic inhibition reveals the timing of automatic and voluntary signals in the human brain. The Journal of Neuroscience 31 (35) , pp. 12501-12512. 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2234-11.2011

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Neurophysiological and phenomenological data on sensorimotor decision making are growing so rapidly that it is now necessary and achievable to capture it in biologically inspired models, for advancing our understanding in both research and clinical settings. However, the main impediment in moving from elegant models with few free parameters to more complex biological models in humans lies in constraining the more numerous parameters with behavioral data (without human single-cell recording). Here we show that a behavioral effect called “saccadic inhibition” (1) is predicted by existing complex (neuronal field) models, (2) constrains crucial temporal parameters of the model, precisely enough to address individual differences, and (3) is not accounted for by current simple decision models, even after significant additions. Visual onsets appearing while an observer plans a saccade knock out a subpopulation of saccadic latencies that would otherwise occur, producing a clear dip in the latency distribution. This overlooked phenomenon is remarkably well time locked across conditions and observers, revealing and characterizing a fast automatic component of visual input to oculomotor competition. The neural field model not only captures this but predicts additional features that are borne out: the dips show spatial specificity, are lawfully modulated in contrast, and occur with S-cone stimuli invisible to the retinotectal route. Overall, we provide a way forward for applying precise neurophysiological models of saccade planning in humans at the individual level.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Publisher: Society for Neuroscience
ISSN: 0270-6474
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 06 May 2024 20:29

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