A condition that produces sensory recalibration and abolishes multisensory integration.

Research paper by Miya K MK Rand, Herbert H Heuer

Indexed on: 29 May '20Published on: 29 May '20Published in: Cognition


We examined the influence of extended exposure to a visuomotor rotation, which induces both motor adaptation and sensory recalibration, on (partial) multisensory integration in a cursor-control task. Participants adapted to a 30° (adaptation condition) or 0° (control condition) visuomotor rotation by making center-out movements to remembered targets. In subsequent test trials of sensory integration, they made center-out movements with variable visuomotor rotations and judged the position of hand or cursor at the end of these movements. Test trials were randomly embedded among twice the number of maintenance trials with 30° or 0° rotation. The biases of perceived hand (or cursor) position toward the cursor (or hand) position were measured. We found motor adaptation together with proprioceptive and visual recalibrations in the adaptation condition. Unexpectedly, multisensory integration was absent in both the adaptation and control condition. The absence stemmed from the extensive experience of constant visuomotor rotations of 30° or 0°, which probably produced highly precise predictions of the visual consequences of hand movements. The frequently confirmed predictions then dominated the estimate of the visual movement consequences, leaving no influence of the actual visuomotor rotations in the minority of test trials. Conversely, multisensory integration was present for sensed hand positions when these were indirectly assessed from movement characteristics, indicating that the relative weighting of discrepant estimates of hand position was different for motor control. The existence of a condition that abolishes multisensory integration while keeping sensory recalibration suggests that mechanisms that reduce sensory discrepancies (partly) differ between integration and recalibration. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.