Abstract 1. We recorded single cell activities in the caudate nucleus of the monkeys trained to perform a series of visuomotor tasks. In the first part of this paper, we summarize the types and locations of neurons in the monkey caudate nucleus. In the second part, we report the characteristics of neurons related to saccadic eye movements. 2. Neurons were classified into two types in terms of spontaneous discharge pattern. A majority of the neurons (2,287/2,559, 89%) had very low-frequency discharges (mostly less than 1 Hz). The rest (n = 272) showed irregular-tonic discharges (3-8 Hz) with broad spikes. 3. Of 2,559 neurons tested, 867 showed spike activity related to some aspects of the tasks; 502 neurons showed discharges in response to environmental changes outside, not in relation to, the tasks. None of the neurons responsive in or outside the tasks belonged to the irregular-tonic type. 4. The task-related activities were classified as: Saccade-related, Visual, Auditory, Cognitive, Fixation-related, and Reward-related. The activities detected outside the tasks were classified into: Visual, Auditory, Movement-related, Reward-related, and Other. Few neurons had both task-related and task-unrelated activities. 5. The locations of recorded neurons were determined using a coordinate system based on the anterior and posterior commissures. Task-related neurons were clustered longitudinally in the central part of the caudate. Neurons responsive outside the tasks were more widely distributed; specifically, auditory neurons were in the medial part, whereas movement-related neurons were in the lateral part. The irregular-tonic neurons were dispersed all over the caudate. 6. The monkey was trained to fixate on a spot of light on the screen and, when the spot moved, to follow it by making a saccade. A visually guided saccade occurred when the spot moved to another location without a time gap (saccade task). A memory-guided saccade occurred when the spot first disappeared and after a time gap reappeared at a fixed location (saccade with gap task). By delivering a cue stimulus while the monkey was fixating, a memory-guided saccade was elicited to a randomly chosen location (delayed saccade task).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) Copyright © 1989 the American Physiological Society
Journal of Neurophysiology – The American Physiological Society
Published: Apr 1, 1989
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