Conditioning pp 389-400 | Cite as

Neuronal Activity in Central Thalamus of Primates and the Voluntary Control of the Gaze

  • Madeleine Schlag-Rey
  • John Schlag
Part of the Advances in Behavioral Biology book series (ABBI, volume 26)


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.


Superior Colliculus Voluntary Control Alert Monkey Internal Medullary Lamina Central Thalamus 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Madeleine Schlag-Rey
    • 1
  • John Schlag
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Anatomy and Brain Research InstituteUCLA School of MedicineLos AngelesUSA

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