There is continuing debate as to whether smooth pursuit relies on the foveation of a moving target, especially when the target is compact. Previous studies have shown that gaze is placed on the center-of-mass of a target during saccadic eye movements. This research aims to understand whether eye placement is similarly centered during smooth pursuit and whether foveation is necessary for pursuing a small stimulus.
This project aims to improve visual function in individuals with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). AMD isassociated with central field loss that cannot be corrected optically. Individuals with AMD are often unaware of their scotoma and their eye movements follow more random patterns, compared to adults with healthy vision. With funding from the National Institutes of Health and Pacific Vision Foundation, we are training indviduals with AMD to direct their eye movements into their scotoma, so that they can sample missing information.