Impairments of oculomotor control in a patient with a right temporo-parietal lesion

S.H. Butler, I.D. Gilchrist, C.J.H. Ludwig, K. Muir, M. Harvey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Goal-driven control over saccade target selection requires the inhibition of task-irrelevant, stimulus-driven saccades. A widely held assumption is that frontal structures are of critical importance for this function. Here we report the oculomotor capture behaviour of a patient with a right temporo-parietal lesion, which challenges this view. T.H. was asked to search for a target among distractors and to signal its location with a saccade. A task-irrelevant, additional distractor appeared with or without abrupt onset, and it was either similar or dissimilar in its colour to the target. Compared to controls, T.H. showed an elevated level of capture overall. He also showed spatial extinction, which was partially overridden by an abrupt onset distractor. These results support the view that effective oculomotor control depends on an intact network of frontal and posterior brain regions. We argue that stimulus-driven and goal-driven signals are computed at different stages, but are ultimately combined in a common functional salience map.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)990-999
Number of pages9
JournalCognitive Neuropsychology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2006


  • cognitive neuropsychology
  • cognitive psychology
  • lateral intraparietal area
  • stimulus-driven
  • attentional capture
  • visual selection
  • abrupt onset
  • antisaccade


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