Paper in Journal of Vision
  • McIntyre, S. & Seizova-Cajic, T. (2007) Neck muscle vibration in full cues affects pointing. Journal of Vision, 7(5):9, 1-8.

    ABSTRACT
    Vibration of the dorsolateral neck stimulates proprioceptors that are normally active during head movement; this induces a visual illusion of contralateral motion and displacement of a stationary target seen against a homogenous background. The spatial constancy explanation of the illusion argues that it occurs because information about head movement is necessary for accurate egocentric localization of visual objects. Accurate egocentric localization, in turn, is necessary for the success of object-directed motor action, but previous studies failed to find evidence that vibration affects pointing toward visual targets in a normally illuminated, structured field. Our goal was to provide this evidence. Vibration lasting 12 s was applied to either side of the neck while observers (N = 11) pointed at the visual target with an unseen hand. Vibration of the right side of dorsal neck in the illuminated visual field induced a 26-mm lateral bias in pointing responses in comparison to the vibration of the left side. We conclude that the mechanism that takes into account neck proprioceptive signals also operates in full cues. The pointing bias in full cues generally co-occurred with reported stationariness of the visual target, suggesting a conflict between cues used in perception of body-centric position used to guide action, which include neck proprioception, and those used in perception of motion, for which object-relative retinal information is sufficient.