Electroretinograms reveal no evidence for centrifugal modulation of retinal inputs during selective attention in man

George R Mangun, J. C. Hansen, S. A. Hillyard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Scopus citations


Eason, Oakley, and Flowers have recently described changes in the B-wave and after-potential of the human electroretinogram (ERG) during spatial selective attention. These results suggested that centrifugal modulation of retinal input may play a role in visual attention. We investigated this effect in two experiments in which subjects attended to sequences of flashes in one visual half-field while ignoring similar flashes in the opposite half-field. Visual event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded from electrodes placed at periorbital and scalp sites, while the ERG was simultaneously recorded using a gold-foil electrode contacting the corneal-scleral surface of the right eye. Selective visual attention was evident in an enhancement of the scalp-recorded N150 component of the visual ERP to flashes in the attended half-field. However, no effect of attention was observed on the B-wave or after-potential of the ERG. Long-latency positive shifts related to attention were demonstrated in the corneal-scleral recording and are discussed with respect to volume-conducted brain activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)156-165
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1986


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Psychology(all)
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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