Quantitative analysis of spontaneous saccade-like rapid eye movements in C57BL/6 mice

Neurosci Res. 2007 Jul;58(3):324-31. doi: 10.1016/j.neures.2007.04.003. Epub 2007 Apr 13.


Saccadic eye movement is a rapid shift of eye position to capture an object in the environment. In this study, we will describe the fundamental properties of spontaneously evoked saccade-like rapid eye movement (SLREM) in mice in order to establish the mouse experimental model for studying saccades. Spontaneous SLREM were recorded and analyzed in C57BL/6 mice in a quantitative manner, using high-speed video-oculography at a high temporal resolution (240 frames/s) under head-fixed conditions. Mice made spontaneous SLREMs in the dark with median amplitude of 14.3+/-2.1 degrees, mainly in the horizontal direction. The peak velocity of SLREM increased almost linearly against its amplitude with slope of 43.6+/-6.1 (degrees/s)/degrees in the upward, 63.3+/-18.0 (degrees/s)/degrees in the downward, 51.3+/-3.9 (degrees/s)/degrees in the nasal, and 31.7+/-3.2 (degrees/s)/degrees in the temporal direction. The duration of SLREM was 56.6+/-23.3 ms in the upward, 57.3+/-18.0 ms in the downward, 52.0+/-5.0 ms in the nasal, and 69.3+/-5.5 ms in the temporal direction. This study provides the basis for analyzing the neural and molecular mechanisms engaged in the control of saccadic eye movements in genetically-engineered mice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Electrooculography / methods
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Ocular Physiological Phenomena*
  • Saccades / physiology*
  • Sleep, REM / physiology*