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Article

Effects of saccade training on express saccade proportions, saccade latencies and peak velocities: An investigation of nasal/temporal differences

Experimental brain research. 2018. Vol. 236. No. 5. P. 1251-1262.
Jóhannesson Ó. I., Edelman J. A., Sigurþórsson B. D., Kristjansson A.

Express saccades have very short latencies and are often considered a special population of saccadic eye movements. Recent evidence suggests that express saccade generation in humans increases with training, and that this training is independent of the actual saccade vector being trained. We assessed the time course of these training-induced increases in express saccade generation and how they differ between the nasal and temporal hemifields, and second whether they transfer from the trained to the untrained eye. We also measured the effects of training on saccade latencies more generally, and upon peak velocities. The training effect transferred between the nasal and temporal hemifields and between the trained and untrained eyes. More surprisingly, we found an asymmetric effect of training on express saccade proportions: Before training, express saccade proportions were higher for saccades made into the nasal hemifield but with training this reversed. This training-induced asymmetry was also observed in overall saccade latencies, showing how training can unmask nasal/temporal asymmetries in saccade latencies. Finally, we report for the first time that saccadic peak velocities increased with training, independently of changes in amplitude. Keywords Nasal temporal asymmetry · Express