Neuromuscular consequences of reflexive covert orienting

Nat Neurosci. 2008 Jan;11(1):13-5. doi: 10.1038/nn2023. Epub 2007 Dec 2.


Visual stimulus presentation activates the oculomotor network without requiring a gaze shift. Here, we demonstrate that primate neck muscles are recruited during such reflexive covert orienting in a manner that parallels activity recorded from the superior colliculus (SC). Our results indicate the presence of a brainstem circuit whereby reflexive covert orienting is prevented from shifting gaze, but recruits neck muscles, predicting that similarities between SC and neck muscle activity should extend to other cognitive processes that are known to influence SC activity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Conditioning, Operant / physiology
  • Cues
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Male
  • Neck Muscles / physiology*
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Orientation / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation / methods
  • ROC Curve
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Reflex / physiology*
  • Reflex / radiation effects
  • Saccades / physiology*
  • Superior Colliculi / cytology*
  • Time Factors