Discharge properties of neurons in the monkey thalamus tested with angular acceleration, eye movement and visual stimuli

Exp Brain Res. 1977 Jun 27;28(3-4):293-9. doi: 10.1007/BF00235710.


Monkeys were trained to make visually evoked eye movements while undergoing simultaneous head rotation. Single units were recorded in the pregeniculate nucleus (PGN). PGN neurons discharged during each saccade, but there was no change in activity with horizontal head acceleration or with various combinations of head and smooth pursuit eye movements as previously described in the cat. Therefore, the anatomical homology between LGNv and PGN does not appear to have a neurophysiological basis. Neurons in the oral part of VPL or occasionally in VPI discharged as a function of head velocity but not with saccades, smooth pursuit or fixation eye movements, nor after brief light flashes or during smooth pursuit across structured backgrounds. This suggests that VPLo and VPI are only vestibular relay nuclei and not concerned with vestibular/visual or vestibular/oculomotor interactions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Eye Movements
  • Haplorhini
  • Ocular Physiological Phenomena*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Rotation
  • Thalamus / physiology*
  • Vestibule, Labyrinth / physiology*