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Attention to objects in peripheral vision is not driven by tiny eye movements

As they focus on soccer (yellow), the player is able to control his or her opponent (pink) in a visionary way. Their focus will be on the ball, while their focus will be on the opponent. Credit: National Eye Institute, NIH

Unwanted eye movements, also known as microsaccades, can occur even when one is looking at a fixed position in space. When observing an object in a peripheral vision (called attention), these microsaccades sometimes adapt to the object of interest. A new study by researchers at the National Eye Institute (NEI) shows that while these microsaccades seem to increase or decrease the signal strength of the brain under control, eye movements are not the drivers of these brain signals. The results of the study will enable researchers to interpret cognitive analyzes in secret and may open up new areas for research into behavioral disorders.

Scientists working on my neuroscience mind recently they were concerned that because both senses and emotions, such as microsaccades, include the same groups of neurons in the brain, microsaccades may be needed to change attention.

“If microsaccades are attractive, it will raise questions about previous research in the field.” said Richard Krauzlis, Ph.D., chief executive officer of the NEI Department of Ophthalmology and Product Selection, and co-author of the research report on the study. “This work suggests that while microsaccades consciously share different pathways, hidden attention does not move the eye.”

Krauzlis’s previous research has shown that secretory stimulation causes changes in certain nerve signals in an area of ​​the brain called larger colliculus, who are involved in identifying incidents. When focusing on a specific area — for example, the right side of a person prognosis– signals in the large colliculus associated with events in this area will be further enhanced, while signals associated with events in a different location, such as on the left, will be in sorrow.

When something appears in our vision, we quickly move our eyes – making a big saccade to the event to see our best. This movement brings the event into a great central vision. These eye movement they are accompanied by a decrease in visual cues altogether, while the brain ignores the speed of change visual data The eye picks up. In a secret laboratory study, primates or individuals are instructed to avoid these types of large saccades, keeping the event attended in perspective. However, microsaccades are involuntary, which are accompanied by the same reduction in content visual signaloften happens anyway.

In this study, led by the first author Gongchen Yu, Ph.D., the researchers asked whether cognitive signal changes in the superior colliculus lead to microsaccades, or if the two pathways can be divided.

The researchers trained monkeys to keep their eyes on the ground while attending of lateral vision. Investigators will point either left or right by flashing a ring on the “cued” side. After being shown, the monkeys will release the joystick if they are detected in color change on the cued side, while ignoring any color changes on the unfamiliar side. Researchers will be able to measure changes in neuronal function in both sides of the greater colliculus, detecting changes to the cued side, and lowering signals on the unidentified side.

At the same time, the researchers used high-resolution cameras to measure microsaccades during the experiment. Sometimes, microsaccades will not be found. In some experiments, monkeys would make microsaccade to the side of the cued, or from the side of the cude. By matching the signal associated with when each microsaccade started, the researchers found that the neuronal signal for control in the larger colliculus was in front of the microsaccade, and then they would re-form after the microsaccade.

In fact, although eye movements also cause changes in nerve signaling in the large colliculus, attention-related symptoms occur without eye movements.

“While neuronal circuits and these two systems play a collision, the interaction between microsaccades and intelligence is not the cause,” Krauzlis said.

“Most optometrists have used this type of experimental system for visual acuity for many years. It is a great help to reaffirm that microsaccades are not the cause of the observed neuronal changes associated with visual care, “said Yu. “This result means we don’t need to re-evaluate the performance of previous years!”


Researchers have identified an area of ​​the brain most important to identify visual cues


Learn more:
According to Gongchen Yu et al, Microsaccades as a non-existent reason for the relative correlation, eLife (2022). DOI: 10.7554 / eLife.74168

Press Release:
eLife

hint: The attention of objects in the vision is not moved by small movements (2022, March 25) retrieved 25 March 2022 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-03-attention-peripheral-vision- driven-tiny.html

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