Properties of neuronal facilitation that improve target tracking in natural pursuit simulations

Journal of the Royal Society, Interface
Zahra M BagheriDavid C O'Carroll


Although flying insects have limited visual acuity (approx. 1°) and relatively small brains, many species pursue tiny targets against cluttered backgrounds with high success. Our previous computational model, inspired by electrophysiological recordings from insect 'small target motion detector' (STMD) neurons, did not account for several key properties described from the biological system. These include the recent observations of response 'facilitation' (a slow build-up of response to targets that move on long, continuous trajectories) and 'selective attention', a competitive mechanism that selects one target from alternatives. Here, we present an elaborated STMD-inspired model, implemented in a closed loop target-tracking system that uses an active saccadic gaze fixation strategy inspired by insect pursuit. We test this system against heavily cluttered natural scenes. Inclusion of facilitation not only substantially improves success for even short-duration pursuits, but it also enhances the ability to 'attend' to one target in the presence of distracters. Our model predicts optimal facilitation parameters that are static in space and dynamic in time, changing with respect to the amount of background clutter and the intended pu...Continue Reading


Jun 1, 1991·Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology·N M Jansonius, J H van Hateren
Dec 1, 1987·Journal of the Optical Society of America. A, Optics and Image Science·D J Field
Sep 29, 1995·Science·D M WolpertM I Jordan
May 14, 1999·Trends in Ecology & Evolution·S A Foster
Sep 11, 1999·Trends in Ecology & Evolution·P A Stephens, W J Sutherland
Nov 11, 1999·Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology·M F Land
Mar 9, 2000·Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology·R M OlbergK R Venator
Jan 28, 2003·Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology·D G Stavenga
Sep 9, 2005·The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience·Joanna R DohertyAnna C Nobre
Feb 2, 2006·PLoS Biology·Karin NordströmDavid C O'Carroll
Apr 7, 2006·The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience·Anna E IpataJames W Bisley
May 25, 2006·Proceedings. Biological Sciences·Karin Nordström, David C O'Carroll
Mar 17, 2007·Current Biology : CB·Paul D BarnettDavid C O'carroll
Sep 4, 2007·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Bart R H GeurtenDavid C O'Carroll
Dec 2, 2008·PloS One·Kristin L BishopDaniel Schmitt
Jun 23, 2009·Trends in Neurosciences·Karin Nordström, David C O'Carroll
Nov 7, 2009·PLoS Computational Biology·Russell S A Brinkworth, David C O'Carroll
Nov 1, 2006·PLoS Biology·Liza Gross
Jan 29, 2011·Biology Letters·Karin NordströmDavid C O'Carroll
May 13, 2011·The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience·Steven D Wiederman, David C O'Carroll
Aug 3, 2012·The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience·Risa SawakiSteven J Luck
Nov 1, 2012·Frontiers in Neural Circuits·James R DunbierDavid C O'Carroll
Dec 25, 2012·Current Biology : CB·Steven D Wiederman, David C O'Carroll
Aug 9, 2013·The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience·Steven D WiedermanDavid C O'Carroll
Jan 8, 2014·Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences·David C O'Carroll, Steven D Wiederman
Dec 10, 2014·Nature·Matteo MischiatiAnthony Leonardo

❮ Previous
Next ❯


Jan 24, 2017·Bioinspiration & Biomimetics·Zahra M BagheriDavid C O'Carroll
Jul 14, 2017·Journal of Neural Engineering·Zahra M BagheriSteven D Wiederman
Jun 2, 2020·Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience·Frances S ChanceFelix Wang
Aug 10, 2019·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Joseph M FabianSteven D Wiederman

❮ Previous
Next ❯

Related Concepts

Trending Feeds


Coronaviruses encompass a large family of viruses that cause the common cold as well as more serious diseases, such as the ongoing outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19; formally known as 2019-nCoV). Coronaviruses can spread from animals to humans; symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties; in more severe cases, infection can lead to death. This feed covers recent research on COVID-19.

Hereditary Sensory Autonomic Neuropathy

Hereditary Sensory Autonomic Neuropathies are a group of inherited neurodegenerative disorders characterized clinically by loss of sensation and autonomic dysfunction. Here is the latest research on these neuropathies.

Evolution of Pluripotency

Pluripotency refers to the ability of a cell to develop into three primary germ cell layers of the embryo. This feed focuses on the mechanisms that underlie the evolution of pluripotency. Here is the latest research.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a disease characterized by unexplained disabling fatigue; the pathology of which is incompletely understood. Discover the latest research on chronic fatigue syndrome here.

Nuclear Pore Complex in ALS/FTD

Alterations in nucleocytoplasmic transport, controlled by the nuclear pore complex, may be involved in the pathomechanism underlying multiple neurodegenerative diseases including Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Frontotemporal Dementia. Here is the latest research on the nuclear pore complex in ALS and FTD.

Landau-Kleffner Syndrome

Landau Kleffner syndrome (LKS), also called infantile acquired aphasia, acquired epileptic aphasia, or aphasia with convulsive disorder, is a rare childhood neurological syndrome characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electroencephalogram. Discover the latest research on LKS here.

STING Receptor Agonists

Stimulator of IFN genes (STING) are a group of transmembrane proteins that are involved in the induction of type I interferon that is important in the innate immune response. The stimulation of STING has been an active area of research in the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Here is the latest research on STING receptor agonists.


Microbicides are products that can be applied to vaginal or rectal mucosal surfaces with the goal of preventing, or at least significantly reducing, the transmission of sexually transmitted infections. Here is the latest research on microbicides.

Regulation of Vocal-Motor Plasticity

Dopaminergic projections to the basal ganglia and nucleus accumbens shape the learning and plasticity of motivated behaviors across species including the regulation of vocal-motor plasticity and performance in songbirds. Discover the latest research on the regulation of vocal-motor plasticity here.

Related Papers

The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
Steven D Wiederman, David C O'Carroll
© 2021 Meta ULC. All rights reserved