Supplementary Material for: Neuromagnetic Cortical Activation during Initiation of Optokinetic Nystagmus: An MEG Pilot Study

<p><b><i>Purpose:</i></b> To investigate the spatiotemporal evolution of cortical activation during the initiation of optokinetic nystagmus using magnetoencephalography. <b><i>Background:</i></b> Previous imaging studies of optokinetic nystagmus in humans using positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging discovered activation of a large set of cortical and subcortical structures during steady-state optokinetic stimulation, but did not provide information on the temporal dynamics of the initial response. Imaging studies have shown that cortical areas responsible for vision in occipital and temporo-occipital areas are involved, i.e. cortical areas control optokinetic stimulation in humans. Magnetoencephalography provides measures that reflect neural ensemble activity in the millisecond time scale, allowing the identification of early cortical components of visuomotor integration. <b><i>Design/Methods:</i></b> We studied neuromagnetic cortical responses during the initiation of optokinetic nystagmus in 6 right-handed healthy subjects. Neuromagnetic activity was recorded with a whole-head magnetoencephalograph, consisting of 143 planar gradiometers. <b><i>Results:</i></b> The mean (±SD) latency between stimulus onset and initiation of optokinetic nystagmus was 177.7 ± 59 ms. Initiation of optokinetic nystagmus evoked an early component in the primary visual cortex starting at 40-90 ms prior to the onset of the slow phase of nystagmus. Almost simultaneously an overlapping second component occurred bilaterally in the temporo-occipital area (visual motion areas), pronounced in the right hemisphere, starting at 10-60 ms prior to the slow-phase onset. Both components showed long-duration activity lasting for up to 100 ms after slow-phase onset. <b><i>Conclusions:</i></b> Our findings suggest that the initiation of optokinetic nystagmus induces early cortical activation in the occipital cortex and almost simultaneously bilaterally in the temporo-occipital cortex. These cortical regions might represent essential areas for the monitoring of retinal slip.</p>