The neuroanatomical basis of oculomotor disorders: the dual motor control of extraocular muscles and its possible role in proprioception

Curr Opin Neurol. 2002 Feb;15(1):35-43. doi: 10.1097/00019052-200202000-00007.


Current investigations show that two separate sets of motoneurons control the extraocular eye muscles, and that is there is a dual final common pathway. We propose that one set of motoneurons are the major source of tension generating eye movements, whereas the other may participate in a proprioceptive system concerned more with the exact alignment and stabilization of the eyes. In this article we discuss the structures that may participate in the proprioceptive circuits; and consider several recent publications in the light of this sensory feedback hypothesis, emphasizing the relevance to eye movement disorders.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Motor Neurons / physiology*
  • Oculomotor Muscles / innervation*
  • Oculomotor Nerve Diseases / pathology*
  • Oculomotor Nerve Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Proprioception / physiology*