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Christine M. Gamble, Joo-Hyun Song; Dynamic modulation of illusory and physical target size on separate and coordinated eye and hand movements. Journal of Vision 2017;17(3):23. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/17.3.23.
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In everyday behavior, two of the most common visually guided actions—eye and hand movements—can be performed independently, but are often synergistically coupled. In this study, we examine whether the same visual representation is used for different stages of saccades and pointing, namely movement preparation and execution, and whether this usage is consistent between independent and naturalistic coordinated eye and hand movements. To address these questions, we used the Ponzo illusion to dissociate the perceived and physical sizes of visual targets and measured the effects on movement preparation and execution for independent and coordinated saccades and pointing. During independent movements, we demonstrated that both physically and perceptually larger targets produced faster preparation for both effectors. Furthermore, participants who showed a greater influence of the illusion on saccade preparation also showed a greater influence on pointing preparation, suggesting that a shared mechanism involved in preparation across effectors is influenced by illusions. However, only physical but not perceptual target sizes influenced saccade and pointing execution. When pointing was coordinated with saccades, we observed different dynamics: pointing no longer showed modulation from illusory size, while saccades showed illusion modulation for both preparation and execution. Interestingly, in independent and coordinated movements, the illusion modulated saccade preparation more than pointing preparation, with this effect more pronounced during coordination. These results suggest a shared mechanism, dominated by the eyes, may underlie visually guided action preparation across effectors. Furthermore, the influence of illusions on action may operate within such a mechanism, leading to dynamic interactions between action modalities based on task demands.
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