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Theses

Morphogénése et variabilité au sein du système oculo-moteur

Abstract : A large body of computational research has been devoted to understanding motor control.This approach, using saccadic adaptation as an example of sensorimotor learning, postulates specialized mechanisms responsible for a motor calibration or optimization processes of cost functions. This thesis dissertation provides an alternative view of oculomotor learning byshowing that saccadic amplitude distributions can be altered by their own consequences.First we manipulated saccadic gain medians. We eliminated the postsaccadic retinal error (either by extinguishing the target during the saccade or by stabilizing its image on the fovea) and provided auditory or visual consequences after the saccades meeting amplitude criteria. This reinforcement procedure could induce gain changes similar to saccadic adaptation obtained via a conventional double-Step paradigm.Then we showed that part of saccadic amplitude variability may be controlled by operant learning. Saccadic gain distributions were reinforced with a tone depending on variability criteria.Our data suggested that oculomotor variability may not result solely from an internal randomnoise. Finally we designed a new paradigm involving a visual search task in which presenting atarget was effective to reinforce various saccadic amplitude variability levels. This means that in real life, seeing the target is a consequence controlling (at least in part) saccadic properties.These results show that a general operant learning process, depending on the functional consequences of eye movements, can guide changes in saccadic amplitude. This may be critical to maintain saccadic accuracy during the lifespan.
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Céline Paeye. Morphogénése et variabilité au sein du système oculo-moteur. Philosophie. Université Charles de Gaulle - Lille III, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012LIL30011⟩. ⟨tel-01124104⟩

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