My laboratory uses physiological recordings from single cells in
animals whose heads are unrestrained to identify the mechanisms that
integrate sensory information from different modalities, and serve to
generate motor actions. Many current theories grounded on data from
anesthetized preparations separate perception and action, with sensory
information analyzed/extracted at different cortical (perceptual)
stages before the decision-making and motor domains. This disregards
direct connections to motor centers at all levels of sensory
processing and creates a need for interfaces to transform sensory
signals into motor commands.
In order to define structural and functional links between specific
sensory inputs and motor outputs we are undertaking parallel series of
experiments of the oculomotor system in humans, cats, and monkeys.
Humans, which can be given precise instructions, provide a
psychophysical benchmark. Animals, which are instructed with operant
conditioning, are suitable for invasive anatomical, behavioral,
physiological, and imaging studies. With this combination of
approaches, we expect to define the mechanisms that link sensory
inputs to motor outputs.
Populin LC, Tollin DJ, Weinstein JM (2002) Human gaze shifts to
acoustic and visual targets. Ann N Y Acad Sci 956:468-473.
Populin LC, Yin TCT (2002) Bimodal interactions in the superior
colliculus of the behaving cat. J Neurosci 22:2826-2834.
Populin LC, Tollin DJT, Yin TCT (2004) Effect of eye position on
saccades and neuronal responses to acoustic stimuli in the superior
colliculus of the behaving cat. JNeurophysiol 92:2151-2167.
Tollin DJ, Populin LC, Yin TCT (2004) Neural correlates of the
precedence effect in the inferior colliculus of behaving cats.
J Neurophysiol 92:3286-3297.
Tollin DJ, Populin LC, Moore JM, Ruhland JL, Yin TCT (2005) Sound
localization performance in the cat: The effect of training the head.
J Neurophysiol 93:1223-1234.
Populin LC (2005) Anesthetics change the excitation/inhibition balance
that governs sensory processing in the cat superior colliculus.
J Neurosci 25:5903-5914.