Neuronal networks underlying and related to horizontal eye movements were visualized by retrograde transneuronal tracing with rabies virus from the left medial rectus muscle in guinea pigs. Time-sequenced labelling revealed distinct circuitries involved in particular oculomotor functions, i.e. vestibulo-ocular reflex and saccade generation (brainstem circuitry), adaptive plasticity (cerebellar modules) and possibly motivation and navigation (limbic, hippocampal and cortical structures). Our results provide a first comprehensive road map of the oculomotor system that is unsurpassed by any previous tracing study. We report a number of unexpected findings that illustrate a much vaster and more complicated network for the control of the relatively simple horizontal eye movements than had been envisioned previously.

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European Journal of Neuroscience
Department of Neuroscience

Graf, W., Gerrits, N., Yatim-Dhiba, N., & Ugolini, G. (2002). Mapping the oculomotor system: The power of transneuronal labelling with rabies virus. European Journal of Neuroscience, 15(9), 1557–1562. doi:10.1046/j.1460-9568.2002.01994.x