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自发性眨眼显示的对比敏感度:显示动眼神经抑制共同机制的证据

Bonneh YS, Adini Y, Polat U

期刊名称:Journal of Vision

卷期:2016年第16卷第6期

摘要

众所周知,自发性眨眼起着重要的生理功能,最近的研究证据表明,它们也和认知过程相关。目前还不清楚这一相关性是否反映出一种粗略的速度调节过程,或者,属于另外一种紧密联系着感官刺激的低级属性的自动且精确的运动过程。我们最近报道(Y. S. Bonneh, Adini, & Polat, 2015)的微颤动,从抑制中启动释放并响应瞬态刺激,该过程系统性地取决于低级别的刺激参数。本文中,我们重新分析了之前的关于观察者充分眨眼过程中微颤动和眨眼的数据(> 10%的试验,23名观察者中有18名进行了测试),这些观察者盯着1 Hz Gabor斑看并默默计数,这些Gabor斑具有不同的对比度和空间频率。我们发现,自发性眨眼虽然不那么频繁,但它们响应瞬态刺激的调制模式类似于微颤动过程,表现出抑制和反弹效应,而这种抑制和反弹效应则依赖于刺激的对比度和空间频率。在第一次眨眼从抑制到释放过程的等待时间之后测量平均眨眼响应时间,而对于具有较低对比度和较高空间频率的刺激而言平均眨眼响应时间更长。重要的是,自发性眨眼的测量与微颤动以及对比敏感度的心理物理学测量过程类似,并且高度相关。这些结果表明,眨眼和微颤动关联着相同的抑制机制,在处理之前的事件时我们有可能避免动眼神经事件,还可能在释放过程中产生反弹效应。双眼眨眼和微颤动的启动可能反映了这一机制的时间过程,并和认知过程相关联。

Spontaneous eyeblinks are known to serve important physiological functions, and recent evidence shows that they are also linked to cognitive processes. It is yet unclear whether this link reflects a crude rate modulation or, alternatively, an automatic and precise process, tightly linked to the low-level properties of sensory stimuli. We have recently reported (Y. S. Bonneh, Adini, & Polat, 2015) that, for microsaccades, the onset and release from inhibition in response to transient stimuli depend systematically on the low-level stimulus parameters. Here we reanalyzed our previous data for both microsaccades and eyeblinks for observers with sufficient blinking (>10% of trials, 18 of 23 observers tested) who watched and silently counted sequences of Gabor patches at 1 Hz with varied contrast and spatial frequency. We found that spontaneous eyeblinks, although less frequent, were similar to microsaccades in their modulation pattern in response to transient stimuli, demonstrating inhibition and rebound, which were dependent on the contrast and spatial frequency of the stimuli. The average blink response time, measured as the latency of the first blink following its release from inhibition, was longer for lower contrast and higher spatial frequency. Importantly, it was highly correlated with a similar measure for microsaccades as well as with psychophysical measures of contrast sensitivity. These results suggest that both eyeblinks and microsaccades are linked to the same inhibitory mechanism that presumably turns off oculomotor events while processing previous events and generates a rebound effect upon its release. The onset of both eyeblinks and microsaccades may thus reflect the time course of this mechanism and the associated cognitive process.

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