Action and perception are intimately coupled systems. One clear case is saccadic suppression, the reduced visibility around the time of saccades, which is important in mediating visual stability; another is the oscillatory modulation of visibility synchronized with hand action. To suppress effectively the spurious retinal motion generated by the eye movements, it is crucial that saccadic suppression and saccadic onset be temporally synchronous. However, the mechanisms that determine this temporal synchrony are unknown. We investigated the effect of saccades on contrast discrimination sensitivity over a long period stretching over >1 s before and after saccade execution. Human subjects made horizontal saccades at will to two stationary saccadic targets separated by 20°. At a random interval, a brief Gabor patch was displayed between the two fixations in either the upper or lower visual field and the subject had to detect its location. Strong saccadic suppression was measured between -50 and 50 ms from saccadic onset. However, the suppression was systematically embedded in a trough of oscillations of contrast sensitivity that fluctuated rhythmically in the delta range (at ∼3 Hz), commencing ∼1 s before saccade execution and lasting for up to 1 s after the saccade. The results show that saccadic preparation and visual sensitivity oscillations are coupled and the coupling might be instrumental in temporally aligning the initiation of the saccade with the visual suppression.

Saccadic suppression is embedded within extended oscillatory modulation of sensitivity

MORRONE, MARIA CONCETTA
2017-01-01

Abstract

Action and perception are intimately coupled systems. One clear case is saccadic suppression, the reduced visibility around the time of saccades, which is important in mediating visual stability; another is the oscillatory modulation of visibility synchronized with hand action. To suppress effectively the spurious retinal motion generated by the eye movements, it is crucial that saccadic suppression and saccadic onset be temporally synchronous. However, the mechanisms that determine this temporal synchrony are unknown. We investigated the effect of saccades on contrast discrimination sensitivity over a long period stretching over >1 s before and after saccade execution. Human subjects made horizontal saccades at will to two stationary saccadic targets separated by 20°. At a random interval, a brief Gabor patch was displayed between the two fixations in either the upper or lower visual field and the subject had to detect its location. Strong saccadic suppression was measured between -50 and 50 ms from saccadic onset. However, the suppression was systematically embedded in a trough of oscillations of contrast sensitivity that fluctuated rhythmically in the delta range (at ∼3 Hz), commencing ∼1 s before saccade execution and lasting for up to 1 s after the saccade. The results show that saccadic preparation and visual sensitivity oscillations are coupled and the coupling might be instrumental in temporally aligning the initiation of the saccade with the visual suppression.
2017
Benedetto, Alessandro; Morrone, MARIA CONCETTA
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
3661.full.pdf

accesso aperto

Tipologia: Versione finale editoriale
Licenza: Creative commons
Dimensione 2.25 MB
Formato Adobe PDF
2.25 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/854225
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 26
  • Scopus 46
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 47
social impact