Correlation of Cross-Axis Eye Movements and Motoneuron Activity in Non-Human Primates with “A” Pattern Strabismus



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Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science


Purpose: The authors showed earlier that animals reared with certain types of visual sensory deprivation during their first few months of life develop large horizontal strabismus, A/V patterns, and dissociated vertical deviation (DVD). Cross-axis eye movements were observed in the nonfixating eye that reflected pattern strabismus and DVD. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether neuronal activity within the oculomotor nucleus could be driving the abnormal cross-axis eye movements observed in the nonfixating eye. Methods: Burst-tonic activity was recorded from oculomotor nucleus neurons in three animals with A-pattern exotropia as they performed horizontal or vertical smooth pursuit during monocular viewing. Two animals were reared by alternate monocular occlusion for 4 months, and one animal was reared by binocular deprivation for 3 weeks. Results: In this study, efforts were focused on neurons modulated for vertical eye movements. Vertical burst-tonic motoneurons were strongly correlated with vertical eye movements regardless of whether the movement was purposeful, as in vertical smooth pursuit, or whether it was inappropriate, as in a vertical component observed in the nonfixating eye during horizontal smooth pursuit. Quantitative analysis of position and velocity sensitivities of the cells measured during the different tracking conditions suggested that motoneuron activity was sufficient to account for most of the inappropriate vertical cross-axis component. Conclusions: Results suggest that, in animals with sensory-induced strabismus, innervation to extraocular muscles from motor nuclei produce the inappropriate cross-axis eye movements, resulting in change in ocular misalignment with gaze position associated with pattern strabismus and DVD.





Copyright 2007 Investigative ophthalmology & visual science. Recommended citation: Das, Vallabh E., and Michael J. Mustari. "Correlation of cross-axis eye movements and motoneuron activity in non-human primates with “A” pattern strabismus." Investigative ophthalmology & visual science 48, no. 2 (2007): 665-674. DOI: 10.1167/iovs.06-0249. URL: Reproduced in accordance with the original publisher’s licensing terms and with permission from the author(s).