A Physiological Basis of Pupillary Dynamics

  • D. Hansmann
  • J. Semmlow
  • L. Stark


Motor activity of the human iris provides an increasingly useful data source to a growing number of research and clinical fields. In addition to studies concerning physiology of the pupillomotor system itself, pupillary activity has become an important tool in sensory physiology (Cartevette and Cole, 1962; E. ijkmann and Vendrile, 1963), neurological diagnosis and research (Stanten and Stark, 1960; Stark and Cornsweet, 1958), pharmacology (Carlson, 1957; Loewenfeld, 1963) and psychology (Hess, 1965). The usefulness of this motor output system is a result of the variety of brain stem mechanisms which contribute to its innervation and the complexity of the pupillomotor neuromuscular apparatus. With the advent of instrumentation to provide continuous monitoring of pupillomotor output quantitative studies, both static and dynamic, were possible and a great deal of behavioral information has been gathered. The ability to quantitatively control certain inputs encourages servoanalytic approaches adding to the richness of material on this Organ (Stark, 1968). However, this fecundity also presents special problems; the wealth of published data often appears confusing and contradictory, and has occasionally led to heated controversy.


Pupil Size Active Tension Sphincter Muscle Pupil Response Human Iris 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1974

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Hansmann
    • 1
  • J. Semmlow
    • 2
  • L. Stark
    • 3
  1. 1.Cardiodynamics LaboratoryBeverly HillsUSA
  2. 2.Bioengineering ProgramUniversity of Illinois at Chicago CircleUSA
  3. 3.Departments of Physiological Optics and Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of California at BerkeleyUSA

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