A dedicated binding mechanism for the visual control of movement

Curr Biol. 2014 Mar 31;24(7):780-5. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.02.030. Epub 2014 Mar 13.


The human motor system is remarkably proficient in the online control of visually guided movements, adjusting to changes in the visual scene within 100 ms [1-3]. This is achieved through a set of highly automatic processes [4] translating visual information into representations suitable for motor control [5, 6]. For this to be accomplished, visual information pertaining to target and hand need to be identified and linked to the appropriate internal representations during the movement. Meanwhile, other visual information must be filtered out, which is especially demanding in visually cluttered natural environments. If selection of relevant sensory information for online control was achieved by visual attention, its limited capacity [7] would substantially constrain the efficiency of visuomotor feedback control. Here we demonstrate that both exogenously and endogenously cued attention facilitate the processing of visual target information [8], but not of visual hand information. Moreover, distracting visual information is more efficiently filtered out during the extraction of hand compared to target information. Our results therefore suggest the existence of a dedicated visuomotor binding mechanism that links the hand representation in visual and motor systems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attention
  • Cues
  • Feedback, Physiological
  • Hand
  • Humans
  • Movement
  • Psychomotor Performance*
  • Visual Perception*