Global stereopsis in human albinos

Vision Research
P Apkarian, D Reits


The presence of global stereopsis was examined in 18 clinically diagnosed albinos; four non-albino controls were also tested including two observers with congenital nystagmus. Stereopsis was evaluated with standard clinical stereo tests and with TV generated random dot stereograms. The latter test involved electrophysiological measures of vertical eye movement tracking in response to a stimulus target. For either test procedure, global stereopsis could be demonstrated in a significant number of albinos across varying phenotypes. These results are of interest in view of electrophysiological investigations in albino animal models which indicate a paucity of binocularly driven cortical neurons in visual areas 17, 18 and 19. While stereopsis may be mediated in our albinos via residual appropriately projecting retino-geniculo-cortical fibres, we suggest that inter and intra cortical communication via corpus callosal connections may play a primary role in providing the adequate neural substrate for albino binocularity.


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