Short-term adaptations of the dynamic disparity vergence and phoria systems

Eun H. Kim, Vincent R. Vicci, Bérangère Granger-Donetti, Tara L. Alvarez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The ability to adapt is critical to survival and varies between individuals. Adaptation of one motor system may be related to the ability to adapt another. This study sought to determine whether phoria adaptation was correlated with the ability to modify the dynamics of disparity vergence. Eye movements from ten subjects were recorded during dynamic disparity vergence modification and phoria adaptation experiments. Two different convergent stimuli were presented during the dynamic vergence modification experiment: a test stimulus (4° step) and a conditioning stimulus (4° double step). Dynamic disparity vergence responses were quantified by measuring the peak velocity (°/s). Phoria adaptation experiments measured the changes in phoria over a 5-min period of sustained fixation. The maximum velocity of phoria adaptation was determined from an exponential fit of the phoria data points. Phoria and dynamic disparity vergence peak velocity were both significantly modified (P < 0.001). The maximum velocity of phoria adaptation was significantly correlated with the changes in convergence peak velocity (r > 0.89; P < 0.001). There was a strong correlation between the ability to adaptively adjust two different oculomotor parameters: a tonic and dynamic component. Future studies should investigate additional interactions between these parameters, and the ability to adaptively change other oculomotor systems such as the saccadic or smooth pursuit system. Understanding the ability to modify phoria, dynamic disparity vergence, and other oculomotor parameters can yield insights into the plasticity of short-term adaptation mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-278
Number of pages12
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience


  • Oculomotor adaptation
  • Phoria adaptation
  • Vergence adaptation


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