Visual sensitivity in the upper and lower visual fields 06/07/2022 - Together with Dr Fracasso and Prof Hafed, we published a new article demonstrating that “Peri-saccadic visual sensitivity is higher in the upper visual field“. Human participants involved in a perceptual discrimination task showed different level of saccadic suppression depending on the location of the stimulus in the visual field. Stimuli presented in the upper visual field were in fact less inhibited than stimuli presented in the lower visual field, suggesting a stronger... Read More
NCM scholarship! 30/05/2022 - My contribution to the 31st Annual Meeting of the Neural Control of Movement Society (NCM) has been awarded with a scholarship. I will present new physiological data about “A sensory race between oculomotor control areas for coordinating motor timing“. The 2022 Annual Meeting will take place in Dublin, Ireland.Stay tuned for mode details on this event!
New position at Suor Orsola Benincasa University 15/04/2022 - I started a new job as Assistant Professor (“Ricercatore tempo determinato – b”) at Suor Orsola Benincasa University in Naples (Italy)! I am very excited about this new adventure in science. I will keep working in understanding brain mechanisms behind oculomotor control and vision.
New review article published in the Journal of Vision 28/07/2021 - Our new review article titled: “The extrafoveal preview paradigm as a measure of predictive, active sampling in visual perception” is now published on the Journal of Vision. The article is Open Access and it can be downloaded here.
Saccadic inhibition mechanisms in covert orienting 04/07/2021 - Our new paper titled “Time-dependent inhibition of covert shifts of attention” has been published in Experimental Brain Research! In two experiments we show that similar inhibitory mechanisms to saccadic inhibition might operate during covert orienting altering perceptual performance in a classic cueing Posner task requiring discrimination. Interestingly, the inhibition seems to take place at a later stage of orienting, when attention is re-oriented away from the cued location. The paper is open... Read More
Revised paper on bioRxiv 27/05/2021 - We uploaded a revised version of our paper titled: “Time-dependent inhibition of covert shift of attention” on bioRxiv. You can find the paper at this link: In the original version of the manuscript, we reported an inhibitory effect of a visual transients during a covert orienting task requiring discrimination of a tilted gabor. The inhibitory effect was taking place only at specific time intervals after cue onset, with greatest interference during... Read More
New paper accepted in the Journal of Vision 18/05/2021 - We have a new paper accepted for for publication in the Journal of Vision! Together with Christoph Huber-Huber and David Melcher, we review theoretical perspectives on visual perception under naturalistic viewing conditions, including theories of active vision, active sensing and sampling. Acknowledging how the extrafoveal preview has a profound influence on visual processing of objects, both for behavior and neural activity, we argue about the need for a reconceptualization of the nature... Read More
New Paper published on eLife 06/05/2021 - Our latest work on the effect of spiking activity in the superior colliculus at the time of oculomotor readout is now out on eLife. This is a very exciting work showing how every spike matters at the time of saccade generation. We report a strong linear relationship between the number of spikes detected intrasaccadically and eye movement kinematic. These modifications reflected a simultaneity of movement-related discharge at one SC site and visually-induced... Read More
DFG grant to study brainstem mechanisms 09/04/2021 - I have been awarded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) of a 3 years grant to study the “Sensory races between motor control brain areas for coordinating how to react to the outside world“. More details on the project can be found here:
Elsevier/Vision Research Virtual Travel Award 16/03/2021 - My abstract was selected for the Elsevier/Vision Research Virtual Travel Award! At V-VSS, I will present very exciting work showing visual features tuning within the brainstem. You can find more information about my poster here. Congratulations to all the other Graduate students and Postdocs that received the travel award!
V-VSS abstract accepted! 23/02/2021 - My abstract titled: “A sensory race between oculomotor control areas for coordinating motor timing” has been accepted for the 2021 V-VSS Annual Meeting that will take place virtually on May 21-26. I will present new neurophysiological data from recordings in the superior colliculus and from the brainstem. We have very exciting evidence of visual responses downstream of superior colliculus, with clear neuronal tuning to stimulus characteristics! I’m looking forward to present my... Read More
New review article about the influence of visual cues on microsaccades 22/02/2021 - We have a new review article titled “Dissociable cortical and subcortical mechanisms for mediating the influences of visual cues on microsaccadic eye movements” now published in Frontiers in Neural Circuits! In the paper, we extensively review how visual cues strongly influence both microsaccadic rate and direction. We explain how these modulations have repercussions on mechanisms of visual selection, and we describe the underlying neural circuits of these behavioral effects. Our main hypothesis... Read More
New article on microsaccadic inhibition and stimulus size and polarity 03/12/2020 - We have a new article published in the Journal of Neurophysiology where we show how stimulus polarity and stimulus size affect microsaccadic rate. You can find the early release of the article here.
“visual form” article now online 31/10/2020 - Our recent article titled “Task-irrelevant visual forms facilitate covert and overt spatial selection” is now available as early release at the Journal of Neuroscience. You can download the article at this link.
The drifting gaze 24/08/2020 - Check out the eLife digest for our latest publication! You can find the digest here and the related publication here.
A new eye movement phenomenon 06/08/2020 - Together with Tatiana Malevich and Ziad Hafed, we documented a new eye movement phenomenon in which oculomotor drift (the small variation in eye gaze position happening between each eye movement) is strongly and rapidly modulated by the appearance of a visual stimulus. This work shows that the oculomotor system can centrally control with high precision and temporal resolution eye movement behavior at its smallest range (just a few minutes of arc, one... Read More
New preprint on covert shift of attention and inhibition 18/07/2020 - We have a new preprint on bioRxiv titled: “Time-locked inhibition of covert orienting” were we look at inhibitory processes during covert orienting in the absence of saccades. In this project, we were interested to study if a similar phenomenon of the well-known Saccadic Inhibition (Reingold & Stampe, 2002; Buonocore & McIntosh, 2008) can also affect covert orienting and consequently altering visual discrimination. To do so, we combined a classic task for the... Read More
Visual forms cue spatial selection 30/06/2020 - In a new work with Amar Bogadhi and Ziad Hafed we tested the hypothesis that the presentation of peripheral visual forms can contribute to spatial selection behaviors even when they are irrelevant to the task. We asked our participants to make covert or overt orienting toward a salient visual target that was preceded by the presentation of two images in the visual periphery. One image showed a visual form, for example a... Read More
VSS virtual poster 19/06/2020 - For this year VSS 2020, Tatiana Malevich is presenting a virtual poster on our work about modulations of drift statistics following the brief appearance of a visual stimulus. From the VSS website, you can find the poster at this ID: Malevich, T., Buonocore, A., & Hafed, Z.M. Rapid stimulus-driven modulation of slow fixational drift eye movements. V-VSS 2020, June 19-24. Abstract ID: 1322 You can have a sneak peak of the presentation... Read More
Every spike counts: new preprint out! 01/06/2020 - We have a new exciting manuscript just out on bioRxiv! In a first experiment, we show that visually-induced action potentials in the superior colliculus, a structure known to drive eye movements, not only occurred intra-saccadically, but they were also associated with highly predictable modifications of the ongoing eye movements. In a second experiment, we performed peri-saccadic microstimulation on the SC map injecting single, double, or triple electrical pulses at a location different... Read More
New preprint on stimulus polarity and microsaccade rate 26/05/2020 - We have a new preprint on bioRxiv about modulations of microsaccade rate by stimulus polarity and size. In this new paper, we show some intriguing modulations of microsaccade rate (the rapid reduction in microsaccade frequency followed by a stronger rebound phase of high microsaccade rate) following the presentation of brief visual flashes consisting of large or small white or black stimuli. First, we show that small stimuli are the only one to cause... Read More
New preprint on oculomotor drift modulations 03/04/2020 - We have a new preprint about stimulus-specific modulations of ocular position drift! This is a very exciting discovery of a new effect whereby the presentation of a visual transient can systematically alter drift dynamics by inducing a general “upward” movement of the eyes. The alteration in gaze position is in the order of 1 minute of arc (about 10 folds smaller than microsaccades) and it is sensitive to stimulus content. These modulations... Read More
Abstract accepted for Cosyne 2020 12/01/2020 - My abstract titled “Visual pattern analysis by motor neurons” has been accepted to Cosyne 2020 for a poster presentation! It is a very exciting news and I’m looking forward to share my neurophysiological results from brainstem recordings. This will be a great opportunity to exchange comments and ideas with other researchers doing neurophysiology as well as neuronal modeling.
New article accepted for publication in The Journal of Neuroscience 10/01/2020 - The new year started with the good news that our article titled: “Post-saccadic face processing is modulated by pre-saccadic preview: evidence from fixation-related potentials“, coauthored with Olaf Dimigen and David Melcher, has been accepted for publication in The Journal of Neuroscience. In the article, we show that the N170, a classic electrophysiological marker of the structural encoding of faces, also occurs during a more natural viewing condition, for example when we move... Read More
The 9th Okazaki-Tübingen-Beijing Joint Symposium 25/11/2019 - On the 15 and 16 of November I participated at the 9th Okazaki-Tübingen-Beijing joint Symposium. In my talk, titled “Every spike counts: physiological tests of the role of superior colliculus motor discharge in eye movement metrics”, I showed with electrophysiological and stimulation experiments in the Superior Colliculus how the addition of a single spike during motor preparation and execution alterate eye movement kinematic. We suggest that the activity represented in the Superior Colliculus is read out by... Read More
Neuroscience 2019! 19/10/2019 - Hi! I’m presenting at #SfN19 a poster showing that “Every spike counts: Intra-saccadic superior colliculus visual bursts modify saccade metrics”. Come and have a chat on October 20, 8-12AM, Presentation Number: 144.15.
Nature Communications Editors’ Highlights 09/10/2019 - Our recent article “Memory-guided microsaccades” is now featured in the Nature Communications Editors’ Highlights “From Brain to Behaviour”! If you haven’t done yet, go and check our article together with all the other amazing research at this link:
New article in press at Nature Communication 31/07/2019 - Our article titled “Memory-guided microsaccades” has been accepted for publication in Nature Communication! This is an exciting work showing how microsaccades can be triggered at will, based on an abstract instruction and without any visual guidance. We also provide for the first time neurophysiological evidence of neurons within the Superior Colliculus that fires exclusively for memory-guided microsaccades. The article is now available at this link:
Seminar in Parma 02/07/2019 - Last Friday (28/06/2019) I gave a seminar at the department of “Medicine and Surgery” at the University of Parma. I presented new data on the “sensory race” of visual information to subcortical structures such as the Superior Colliculus and the Brainstem. This work finally links the well-known behavioural effect of (micro)Saccadic Inhibition and its spatial counterpart with the activity in the Brainstem and in the Colliculus. It was great to be a... Read More
Article in press on NeuroImage! 02/07/2019 - Our latest article “The peripheral preview effect with faces: Combined EEG and eye-tracking suggests multiple stages of trans-saccadic predictive and non-predictive processing” is now in press on NeuroImage. Follow the publication at this link:
Every spike counts: Neuroscience 2019 abstract accepted! 21/06/2019 - Our newest work titled “Every spike counts: Intra-saccadic superior colliculus visual bursts modify saccade metrics” has been accepted for Neuroscience 2019. This year the conference will be held in October 19-23, Chicago, IL. I will present very exciting data linking superior colliculus activity during saccadic inhibition and eye movement kinematic. Come and join the discussion at the poster session on the 10/20/2019 8:00:00 AM to 12:00:00 PM.
Tübingen open day 25/05/2019 - Our lab participated at the Tüff (Tübingen’s window on research), a University event to present the ongoing research to the general public. We had the chance to interact with people discussing about vision and eye movements. We also had some nice demos to demonstrate how uncertain our perception is, despite the feeling of always seeing a constant and stable world around us. The event was very interesting and entertaining. All the labs... Read More
New article on bioRxiv! 17/04/2019 - We have a new preprint available for download from bioRxiv! In the article, we show that probing the visual system with the same face stimulus (compared to a meaningless stimulus with similar visual characteristics) before and after a saccade resulted in an attenuated neural response, that we recorded in the form of a reduced N170 component (a classic electrophysiological marker of the structural processing of faces). The results strongly suggest that the... Read More
New article available on bioRxiv 04/02/2019 - Can microsaccades be executed at will? In a large behavioural and neurophysiological study we answered to this question. Our new article “Memory-guided micorsaccades” is now available on bioRxiv DOI:
New article published in the Journal of Neuroscience! 13/01/2019 - Our latest work about the effect of visual transients on the initiation of smooth pursuit eye movement as well as on-going visual tracking has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Neuroscience. The article is now available as early release here:   DOI:
New article published in the Journal of Neurophysiology! 12/12/2018 - Our article on smooth pursuit eye movements had been accepted for publication on the Journal of Neurophysiology. It is now accessible here:
New paper on bioRxiv 01/07/2018 - We have a new paper submitted: “The transfer function of the rhesus macaque oculomotor system for small-amplitude slow motion trajectories”. It is a new exciting work showing how slow movements can be accurately and voluntarily tracked. These results support the hypothesis that even drift eye movements, i.e. the slow movements between saccades, can be centrally controlled. The article is already uploaded on bioRxiv at this doi: Have a nice read!
ECVP in Trieste 27/06/2018 - This year I will participate to ECVP in Trieste. This gives me the chance to go back and visit the University where I graduated, so I am very excited about it! At the conference, I have three co-authored posters: “The transfer function of the oculomotor system for small-amplitude slow motion trajectories” together with Julianne Skinner and Prof. Ziad Hafed; “Investigating the role of prediction in trans-saccadic perception: Peripheral preview reduces the fixation-locked... Read More
Primate Neurobiology Conference 09/04/2018 - This year the Primate Neurobiology Conference is held in Tübingen and it is an exciting forum of discussion for people particularly intersted in primate research. I’m giving a methodological talk on a new wireless system to record eye movements and I also have one poster on modulation of pursuit eye movements by visual transients. Moreover, together with Julianne Skinner, we have new exciting data on “The transfer function of the oculomotor system... Read More