Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Human Eye Movements for Vision Are Remarkably Adaptable

When something gets in the way of our ability to see, we quickly pick up a new way to look, in much the same way that we would learn to ride a bike, according to a new study published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on August 15. Our eyes are constantly on the move, darting this way and that four to five times per second. Now researchers have found that the precise manner of those eye movements can change within a matter of hours. This discovery by researchers from the University of Southern California might suggest a way to help those with macular degeneration better cope with vision loss. "The system that controls how the eyes move is far more malleable than the literature has suggested," says Bosco Tjan of the University of Southern California. "We showed that people with normal vision can quickly adjust to a temporary occlusion of their foveal vision by adapting a consistent point in their peripheral vision as their new point of gaze." more

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