Institut de Neurosciences Cognitives et Intégratives d'Aquitaine (UMR5287)

Aquitaine Institute for Cognitive and Integrative Neuroscience

Université de Bordeaux

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CNRS Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes Université de Bordeaux

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Tadpoles dancin’ the boogie: the best way to control gaze during swimming

by Wolff - published on , updated on

Tadpoles dancin' the boogie: the best way to control gaze during swimming

Temporal calibration of locomotor-induced oculomotor behavior in larval frog
Bacqué-Cazenave J, Courtand G, Beraneck M, Lambert FM, Combes D.
Temporal Relationship of Ocular and Tail Segmental Movements Underlying Locomotor-Induced Gaze Stabilization During Undulatory Swimming in Larval Xenopus. Front Neural Circuits. 2018 Oct 29;12:95. doi: 10.3389/fncir.2018.00095. eCollection 2018.

Prior to visuo-vestibular reflexes frog tadpoles use the locomotor signal elicited from spinal motor networks to enhance gaze stabilization during undulatory swimming. The locomotor-induced oculomotor behavior produced by such a feed-forward efference copy-based mechanism remained poorly understood. Julien Bacqué-Cazenave and colleagues from the OASM team recently investigated the temporal tuning of eye and tail segmental movements during undulatory swimming in larval xenopus. The quantification of the locomotor-induced oculomotor behavior revealed that rostral spinal motor CPGs generate conjugate eye movements that compensate undulation of the mid-caudal tail, the tail section that produce the maximum swimming thrust in the water. For this project, Gilles Courtand, manager of the IMAGYS core facility developed a python-based software allowing the automatic high speed video-tracking of body parts (eyes, tail segments, limb…) in aquatic small vertebrate such as larval frog that are now available for the entire scientific community:

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