Neuronal Activity in Central Thalamus of Primates and the Voluntary Control of the Gaze
Most electrophysiological studies on central mechanisms of gaze control (in looking) have been concerned with experimental situations where the movement of the eyes is entirely controlled, temporally and spatially, by a visual stimulus. We have recorded single units in a thalamic region of alert monkeys, where cells active with self-initiated eye movements are found. Neuronal activation could anticipate contraversive saccades by 200–300 ms. In this region, we have studied cells while the animal made intermittent attempts to track a target or even shifted its gaze voluntarily between two targets. The pattern of activity of some of these cells appeared indicative of the decision by the animal to make a target the goal of its oculomotor apparatus.
KeywordsSuperior Colliculus Voluntary Control Alert Monkey Internal Medullary Lamina Central Thalamus
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Goldberg, M.E., and Bushnell, M.C., 1981, Role of the frontal eye fields in visually guided saccades, in: “Progress in oculo-motor research”, A. Fuchs and W. Becker, eds., Elsevier, Amsterdam.Google Scholar
- Merker, B.H., 1979, Physical development: new applications to silver staining of neural tissue, Neurosci. Abstr. 1455.Google Scholar
- Mohler, C.W., and Wurtz, R.H., 1976, Organization of monkey superior colliculus: intermediate layer cells discharging before eye movements, J. Neurophysiol., 40: 74–94.Google Scholar
- Schlag, J., and Schlag-Rey, M., 1977, Visuomotor properties of cells in the cat thalamic internal medullary lamina, in: “Control of gaze by brain stem neurons”, R. Baker and A. Berthoz, eds., Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp. 453–462.Google Scholar
- Schlag-Rey, M., and Schlag, J., 1981, Eye-movement related neuronal activity in the central thalamus of monkeys, in: “Progress in oculomotor research”, A. Fuchs and W. Becker, eds., Elsevier, Amsterdam.Google Scholar