1. Subjects were asked to point toward visual targets without visual reafference from the moving hand in two conditions. In both conditions the pointing fingertip was viewed only before movement onset. 2. In one condition, the pointing fingertip was viewed through prisms that created a visual displacement without altering the view of the target. In another experimental condition, vision of the fingertip was not displaced. Comparison of these two conditions showed that virtually shifting finger position before movement through prisms induced a pointing bias in the direction opposite to the shift. The extent of this pointing bias was about one third of the prismatic shift applied to the fingertip. 3. Analysis of movement initial direction demonstrated that it was also less deviated than predicted from the prismatic shift. In addition, the reaction time and movement time of the reaching movement were increased. 4. This result is interpreted in the framework of the vectorial coding of reaching movement. Proprioception and vision provide two possible sources of information about initial hand position, i.e., the origin of the movement vector. The question remains as to how these two sources of information interact in specifying initial hand position when they are simultaneously available. 5. Our results are thus discussed with respect to a visual-to-visual movement vector hypothesis and a proprioceptive-to-visual vector hypothesis. It is argued that the origin of the putative movement vector is encoded by weighted fusion of the visual and the proprioceptive information about hand initial position.
- Copyright © 1995 the American Physiological Society