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Donatas Jonikaitis, Saurabh Dhawan, Nina Hanning, Heiner Deubel; Sensorimotor transformation for antisaccades requires dissociable facilitatory and inhibitory components. Journal of Vision 2016;16(12):859. doi: 10.1167/16.12.859.
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© 2017 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.
The anti-saccade task, in which participants have to avoid a reflexive response towards a visual stimulus and make a voluntary response away from it instead, is a classic task to investigate flexible control of behavior. However, earlier work has show enhanced visual and neural responses at the visual stimulus and saccade target locations, which is at odds with the idea that anti-saccade task requires inhibition of reflexive responses. In the current study we developed a memory-guided anti-saccade task in which participants made pro and anti-saccades after variable delays from the visual stimulus onset. To probe for facilitatory and inhibitory motor biases, we measured the latencies of reflexive saccades to different locations in space while participants performed the task. The results demonstrate, for the first time, that the anti-saccade task leads to the formation of a spatially specific inhibitory bias at the visual stimulus location and a facilitatory bias at the anti-saccade goal. Importantly, these motor biases were accompanied by sensory facilitation at both, the visual stimulus location and the anti-saccade goal, indicating that motor inhibition is exclusive to the oculomotor system. Our findings indicate that the anti-saccade task evokes both facilitatory sensory gating mechanisms and suppressive oculomotor mechanisms. Further, they can explain earlier reported paradoxical findings and suggest a two-level mechanism for the anti-saccade produc
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2016
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