The long-term goal of our research is to understand how the visual system decides where to look. The activity of multiple neurons as well as local field potentials will be monitored simultaneously in monkeys performing visual search tasks designed to dissociate visual processing from saccade preparation. The frontal eye field will be studied because it is situated anatomically to sample the outcome of visual processing to orient attention and produce motor commands to orient gaze. Neural signals in frontal eye field will be analyzed to evaluate specific hypotheses about how visual information is processed for target selection and how saccade preparation relates to target selection (Aim 1) that will guide and constrain stochastic network models of the visual-to-motor transformation necessary to perform visual search (Aim 2). Neural signals in supplementary eye field will be analyzed to determine its contribution to target selection and error monitoring during visual search (Aim 3). The results of these experiments will be interpreted in the framework of a new Stage Theory of Attention and Decision which postulates that visually guided eye movements in complex environments are produced by a sequence of stages -- one stage that encodes and selects visual stimuli for attention followed by another stage that prepares to initiate saccades. This framework offers the opportunity to distinguish the respective contributions of these two, distinct stages to disorders of visual attention, orientation and mobility.

Public Health Relevance

Clinical science has progressed by carving nature at its joints. The Stage Theory of Attention and Decision postulates that visually guided action in complex environments arises from the operation of one stage that encodes and selects visual stimuli for attention followed by another stage that prepares and initiates saccades. This framework offers the opportunity to distinguish the respective contributions of these two, distinct states to disorders of visual attention, orientation and mobility.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01EY008890-22
Application #
8415547
Study Section
Central Visual Processing Study Section (CVP)
Program Officer
Steinmetz, Michael A
Project Start
1991-01-01
Project End
2015-01-31
Budget Start
2013-02-01
Budget End
2014-01-31
Support Year
22
Fiscal Year
2013
Total Cost
$370,500
Indirect Cost
$133,000
Name
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Department
Ophthalmology
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
004413456
City
Nashville
State
TN
Country
United States
Zip Code
37212
Nelson, Matthew J; Murthy, Aditya; Schall, Jeffrey D (2016) Neural control of visual search by frontal eye field: chronometry of neural events and race model processes. J Neurophysiol 115:1954-69
Neggers, S F W; Zandbelt, B B; Schall, M S et al. (2015) Comparative diffusion tractography of corticostriatal motor pathways reveals differences between humans and macaques. J Neurophysiol 113:2164-72
Logan, Gordon D; Yamaguchi, Motonori; Schall, Jeffrey D et al. (2015) Inhibitory control in mind and brain 2.0: blocked-input models of saccadic countermanding. Psychol Rev 122:115-47
Heitz, Richard P; Schall, Jeffrey D (2013) Neural chronometry and coherency across speed-accuracy demands reveal lack of homomorphism between computational and neural mechanisms of evidence accumulation. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 368:20130071
Purcell, Braden A; Schall, Jeffrey D; Woodman, Geoffrey F (2013) On the origin of event-related potentials indexing covert attentional selection during visual search: timing of selection by macaque frontal eye field and event-related potentials during pop-out search. J Neurophysiol 109:557-69
Schall, Jeffrey D (2013) Macrocircuits: decision networks. Curr Opin Neurobiol 23:269-74
Reinhart, Robert M G; Heitz, Richard P; Purcell, Braden A et al. (2012) Homologous mechanisms of visuospatial working memory maintenance in macaque and human: properties and sources. J Neurosci 32:7711-22
Heitz, Richard P; Schall, Jeffrey D (2012) Neural mechanisms of speed-accuracy tradeoff. Neuron 76:616-28
Purcell, Braden A; Weigand, Pauline K; Schall, Jeffrey D (2012) Supplementary eye field during visual search: salience, cognitive control, and performance monitoring. J Neurosci 32:10273-85
Purcell, Braden A; Heitz, Richard P; Cohen, Jeremiah Y et al. (2012) Response variability of frontal eye field neurons modulates with sensory input and saccade preparation but not visual search salience. J Neurophysiol 108:2737-50

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