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Brain Cogn. 2008 Dec;68(3):371-90. doi: 10.1016/j.bandc.2008.08.024. Epub 2008 Oct 23.

The tell-tale tasks: a review of saccadic research in psychiatric patient populations.

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Department of Psychology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, College of Letters and Sciences, 1202 West Johnson Street, Madison, WI 53706, USA.


This review focuses on saccade research with adult psychiatric patients. It begins with an introduction of the various types of saccades and the tasks used to evoke them. The functional significance of the different types of eye movements is briefly discussed. Research findings regarding the saccadic performance of different adult psychiatric patient populations are discussed in detail, with particular emphasis on findings regarding error rates, response latencies, and any specific task parameters that might affect those variables. Findings regarding the symptom, neurocognitive, and neural correlates of saccadic performance and the functional significance of patients' saccadic deficits are also discussed. We also discuss the saccadic deficits displayed by various patient groups in terms of circuitry (e.g. cortical/basal ganglia circuits) that may be implicated in the underlying pathophysiology of several of these disorders. Future directions for research in this growing area are offered.

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