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The antisaccade task: Sensory- and motor-related costs to oculomotor planning

23.425, Saturday, 17-May, 8:30 am - 12:30 pm, Banyan Breezeway
Session: Eye movements: Cognition

Jesse DeSimone1, Gabriella Aber1, Matthew Heath1,2; 1School of Kinesiology, The University of Western Ontario, 2Graduate Program in Neuroscience, The University of Western Ontario

The concurrent presentation of a target and remote distractor (> 20°) increases the planning times of stimulus-driven prosaccades (i.e., the remote distractor effect, RDE). In the present investigation, we sought to determine whether antisaccade planning times are similarly influenced by the presentation of a remote distractor. Indeed, the basis for this question stems from the fact that the non-standard mapping between stimulus and response in the antisaccade task provides a basis for determining whether the sensory- or motor-related features of a distractor influence oculomotor planning times. In Experiment 1, participants completed pro- and antisaccades in a condition that entailed a single and exogenously presented target (i.e., control condition) and conditions wherein the target was presented simultaneously with distractors at remote (i.e., contralateral, foveal) or ipsilateral locations relative to the target. Results for prosaccade latencies showed the aforementioned RDE, whereas antisaccade latencies for all distractor locations were increased compared to their control condition counterparts. Experiment 2 involved same basic methods as Experiment 1 with the exception that we precued distractor location to reduce the attentional demands associated with disentangling target and distractor locations at response planning. Results confirmed the findings of Experiment 1 in that antisaccade latencies were increased across each distractor location. Moreover, the antisaccade latency cost was increased when the spatial properties of the distractor were congruent with motor-related task goals. Based on these findings, we propose that the non-standard nature of antisaccades renders a general increase in oculomotor planning times regardless of the distractor’s spatial properties. Further, we propose the spatial relations between distractor and movement-related goals elicit an increased inhibition of oculomotor networks than the spatial relations between distractor and veridical stimulus location.

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