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Noncommutative control in the rotational vestibuloocular reflex


Tchelidze, T; Hess, B J M (2008). Noncommutative control in the rotational vestibuloocular reflex. Journal of Neurophysiology, 99(1):96-111.

Abstract

To investigate the role of noncommutative computations in the oculomotor system, three-dimensional (3D) eye movements were measured in seven healthy subjects using a memory-contingent vestibulooculomotor paradigm. Subjects had to fixate a luminous point target that appeared briefly at an eccentricity of 20 degrees in one of four diagonal directions in otherwise complete darkness. After a fixation period of approximately 1 s, the subject was moved through a sequence of two rotations about mutually orthogonal axes in one of two orders (30 degrees yaw followed by 30 degrees pitch and vice versa in upright and 30 degrees yaw followed by 20 degrees roll and vice versa in both upright and supine orientations). We found that the change in ocular torsion induced by consecutive rotations about the yaw and the pitch axis depended on the order of rotations as predicted by 3D rotation kinematics. Similarly, after rotations about the yaw and roll axis, torsion depended on the order of rotations but now due to the change in final head orientation relative to gravity. Quantitative analyses of these ocular responses revealed that the rotational vestibuloocular reflexes (VORs) in far vision closely matched the predictions of 3D rotation kinematics. We conclude that the brain uses an optimal VOR strategy with the restriction of a reduced torsional position gain. This restriction implies a limited oculomotor range in torsion and systematic tilts of the angular eye velocity as a function of gaze direction.

Abstract

To investigate the role of noncommutative computations in the oculomotor system, three-dimensional (3D) eye movements were measured in seven healthy subjects using a memory-contingent vestibulooculomotor paradigm. Subjects had to fixate a luminous point target that appeared briefly at an eccentricity of 20 degrees in one of four diagonal directions in otherwise complete darkness. After a fixation period of approximately 1 s, the subject was moved through a sequence of two rotations about mutually orthogonal axes in one of two orders (30 degrees yaw followed by 30 degrees pitch and vice versa in upright and 30 degrees yaw followed by 20 degrees roll and vice versa in both upright and supine orientations). We found that the change in ocular torsion induced by consecutive rotations about the yaw and the pitch axis depended on the order of rotations as predicted by 3D rotation kinematics. Similarly, after rotations about the yaw and roll axis, torsion depended on the order of rotations but now due to the change in final head orientation relative to gravity. Quantitative analyses of these ocular responses revealed that the rotational vestibuloocular reflexes (VORs) in far vision closely matched the predictions of 3D rotation kinematics. We conclude that the brain uses an optimal VOR strategy with the restriction of a reduced torsional position gain. This restriction implies a limited oculomotor range in torsion and systematic tilts of the angular eye velocity as a function of gaze direction.

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3 citations in Web of Science®
4 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Neuroscience Center Zurich
04 Faculty of Medicine > Center for Integrative Human Physiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Neurology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:January 2008
Deposited On:19 Jan 2009 08:02
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:50
Publisher:American Physiological Society
ISSN:0022-3077
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1152/jn.00804.2007
PubMed ID:17989243

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