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Vision Res. 2001;41(25-26):3353-69.

Plasticity of convergence-dependent variations of cyclovergence with vertical gaze.

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  • 1School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley CA 94720-2020, USA. schor@socrates.berkeley.edu

Abstract

Binocular alignment of foveal images is facilitated by cross-couplings of vergence eye movements with distance and direction of gaze. These couplings reduce horizontal, vertical and cyclodisparities at the fovea without using feedback from retinal image disparity. Horizontal vergence is coupled with accommodation. Vertical vergence that aligns tertiary targets in asymmetric convergence is thought to be coupled with convergence and horizontal gaze. Cyclovergence aligns the horizontal retinal meridians during gaze elevation in symmetrical convergence and is coupled with convergence and vertical gaze. The latter vergence-dependent changes of cyclovergence have been described in terms of the orientation of Listing's plane and have been referred to as the binocular extension of Listing's law. Can these couplings be modified? Plasticity has been demonstrated previously for two of the three dimensions of vergence (horizontal and vertical). The current study demonstrates that convergence-dependent changes of the orientation of Listing's plane can be adapted to either exaggerate or to reduce the cyclovergence that normally facilitates alignment of the horizontal meridians of the retinas with one another during gaze elevation in symmetrical convergence. The adaptability of cyclovergence demonstrates a neural mechanism that, in conjunction with the passive forces determined by biomechanical properties of the orbit, could play an active role in implementing Listing's extended law and provide a means for calibrating binocular eye alignment in three dimensions.

PMID:
11718779
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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