Microstimulation to the Middle Temporal Area and its Effect on the Generation of Microsaccades

Riaz, Haider; Golzar, Ashkan
April 2014
McGill Science Undergraduate Research Journal;Apr2014, Vol. 9 Issue 1, p25
Academic Journal
It has been repeatedly shown that neural activity in different brain structures can be correlated with perceptual and cognitive functions using electrical microstimulation. Currently, microstimulation is the only method that can demonstrate causal links between neural activity and specific cognitive functions. This study investigates the effects of microstimulation to the MT area of the visual cortex on the production of microsaccades for several seconds. Microsaccades are a type of fixational eye movement characterized by their quickness and low amplitude. The preliminary findings in this paper suggest that microstimulation to the MT area causes an increase in frequency and peak velocity of microsaccades. However, a more in-depth analysis to establish a correlation between the two was unsuccessful. These results suggest further investigation into the effects of microstimulation on microsaccades – using more sophisticated and reliable data collecting and analyzing techniques – is necessary.


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