Geometry of the Superior Colliculus Mapping and Efficient Oculomotor Computation

Biol Cybern. 2007 Oct;97(4):279-92. doi: 10.1007/s00422-007-0172-2. Epub 2007 Aug 10.


Numerous brain regions encode variables using spatial distribution of activity in neuronal maps. Their specific geometry is usually explained by sensory considerations only. We provide here, for the first time, a theory involving the motor function of the superior colliculus to explain the geometry of its maps. We use six hypotheses in accordance with neurobiology to show that linear and logarithmic mappings are the only ones compatible with the generation of saccadic motor command. This mathematical proof gives a global coherence to the neurobiological studies on which it is based. Moreover, a new solution to the problem of saccades involving both colliculi is proposed. Comparative simulations show that it is more precise than the classical one.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Brain Mapping
  • Computer Simulation*
  • Eye Movements / physiology*
  • Haplorhini / anatomy & histology
  • Haplorhini / physiology
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Models, Neurological
  • Oculomotor Muscles / innervation
  • Oculomotor Muscles / physiology*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Saccades / physiology
  • Superior Colliculi / anatomy & histology
  • Superior Colliculi / physiology*
  • Visual Pathways / physiology*