The long-term objective of this research is to study forebrain mechanisms involved in the initiation of eye movement. Extracellular recording from single neurons of the cerebral frontal and parietal lobes will be performed in alert monkeys. The neural signals will be analyzed in relation with eye and head movements measured by the magnetic search coil technique. The animals will be trained to acquire, pursue and anticipate visual targets presented on a screen, and to search for visual cues in a complex array of stimuli. Single neuron activity will be observed during the movements required by these tasks and movements occurring spontaneously.
The aim i s to understand how target location is encoded and proper commands are derived to specify the goal of a gaze movement. During the present project period, the dynamics of cooperation between cortical areas will be explored using microstimulation and recording.