The discharge characteristics of single units in the oculomotor and abducens nuclei of the unanesthetized monkey

Schiller PH
Experimental Brain Research, 1970, 10:4, 347-62.

1. Extracellular single unit records were obtained in the brainstem oculomotor complex of alert monkeys.
2. Maintained eye position, smooth pursuit and saccadic eye movement appear to be brought about by the same population of neurons.
3. Increasing deviation in eye position for fixation and for smooth pursuit movement is accomplished in two ways: (a) increase and decrease in firing rate and (b) change in the number of neurons discharging concurrently.
4. Saccadic eye movement is brought about by a rapid burst of firing in these same units. Saccade size is determined by the duration of the burst; the speed of the saccade appears to be influenced both by discharge frequency and the size of the neuronal pool discharging in synchrony.
5. A small population of units discharges specifically in association with vergence operations, increasing their firing rate to convergence and decreasing it to divergence.

Unique Identifier 70211347
Publication Type JOURNAL ARTICLE
ISSN 0014-4819
Country of Publication GERMANY, WEST