Exploring the role of the substantia nigra pars reticulata in eye movements.

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Experiments that demonstrated a role for the substantia nigra in eye movements have played an important role in our understanding of the function of the basal ganglia in behavior more broadly. In this review we explore more recent experiments that extend the role of the substantia nigra pars reticulata from a simple gate for eye movements to include a role in cognitive processes for eye movements. We review recent evidence suggesting that basal ganglia nuclei beyond the substantia nigra may also play a role in eye movements and the cognitive events leading up to the production of eye movements. We close by pointing out some unresolved questions in our understanding of the relationship of basal ganglia nuclei and eye movements.





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Basso, MA, and MA Sommer (2011). Exploring the role of the substantia nigra pars reticulata in eye movements. Neuroscience, 198. pp. 205–212. 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.08.026 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/10301.

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Marc A. Sommer

Professor of Biomedical Engineering

We study circuits for cognition. Using a combination of neurophysiology and biomedical engineering, we focus on the interaction between brain areas during visual perception, decision-making, and motor planning. Specific projects include the role of frontal cortex in metacognition, the role of cerebellar-frontal circuits in action timing, the neural basis of "good enough" decision-making (satisficing), and the neural mechanisms of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

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