Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date

October 2012


Patients with optic ataxia (OA), who are missing the caudal portion of their superior parietal lobule (SPL), have difficulty performing visually-guided reaches towards extra-foveal targets. Such gaze and hand decoupling also occurs in commonly performed non-standard visuomotor transformations such as the use of a computer mouse. In this study, we test two unilateral OA patients in conditions of 1) a change in the physical location of the visual stimulus relative to the plane of the limb movement, 2) a cue that signals a required limb movement 180° opposite to the cued visual target location, or 3) both of these situations combined. In these non-standard visuomotor transformations, the OA deficit is not observed as the well-documented field-dependent misreach. Instead, OA patients make additional eye movements to update hand and goal location during motor execution in order to complete these slow movements. Overall, the OA patients struggled when having to guide centrifugal movements in peripheral vision, even when they were instructed from visual stimuli that could be foveated. We propose that an intact caudal SPL is crucial for any visuomotor control that involves updating ongoing hand location in space without foveating it, i.e. from peripheral vision, proprioceptive or predictive information.


This work was originally published in PLoS ONE, available at doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0046619.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.