Bilateral impairment of concurrent saccade programming in hemispatial neglect

Ptak, Radek; Schnider, Armin; Müri, René (2010). Bilateral impairment of concurrent saccade programming in hemispatial neglect. Neuropsychologia, 48(4), pp. 880-6. Oxford: Elsevier 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.11.005

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When healthy observers make a saccade that is erroneously directed toward a distracter stimulus, they often produce a corrective saccade within 100ms after the end of the primary saccade. Such short inter-saccadic intervals indicate that programming of the secondary saccade has been initiated prior to the execution of the primary saccade and hence that the two saccades have been programmed concurrently. Here we show that concurrent saccade programming is bilaterally impaired in left spatial neglect, a strongly lateralized disorder of visual attention resulting from extensive right cerebral damage. Neglect patients were asked to make saccades to targets presented left or right of fixation while disregarding a distracter presented in the opposite hemifield. We examined those experimental trials on which participants first made a saccade to the distracter, followed by a secondary (corrective) saccade to the target. Compared to healthy and right-hemisphere damaged control participants the proportion of secondary saccades directing gaze to the target instead of bringing it even closer to the distracter was bilaterally reduced in neglect patients. In addition, the characteristic reduction of secondary saccade latency observed in both control groups was absent in neglect patients, whether the secondary saccade was directed to the left or right hemifield. This pattern is consistent with a severe, bilateral impairment of concurrent saccade programming in left spatial neglect.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology

UniBE Contributor:

Müri, René Martin








Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:08

Last Modified:

06 Mar 2014 19:35

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URI: (FactScience: 197885)

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