Effect of light flashes on saccadic oculomotor control

F. B. Chua, A. Daftari, T. L. Alvarez, R. DeMarco, M. T. Bergen, K. D. Beck, R. J. Servatius

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The ability to make quick and accurate saccadic eye movements for exploring the existing environment requires multiple regions of the brain working with the saccadic oculomotor control system. The goal of this experiment was to study how light stimuli affect this system. This was tested by presenting intermittent light flashes in three subjects as they visually attempted to locate a target. The subject was presented with a target at 15 degrees to the right accompanied by a photic stimulus at midline, 15 degrees to the left, or 15 degrees to the right. For comparison, a control comprised of a target 15 degrees to the right with no photic stimulation was also presented. Data were collected using the Skalar infrared limbic tracking system and a custom Lab VIEW program. Dynamics were quantified using a latency analysis program written in MatLAB. Results show that the latency to saccade to the desired target increased when light flashes occurred in various positions, compared to targeting without photic stimulation. These increases in latency suggest that light has an effect on the saccadic oculomotor system, affecting physiological performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-46
Number of pages2
JournalProceedings of the IEEE Annual Northeast Bioengineering Conference, NEBEC
StatePublished - 2003
EventProceedings of the IEEE 29th Annual Northeast Bioengineering Conference - Newark, NJ, United States
Duration: Mar 22 2003Mar 23 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Bioengineering


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