Use of a genetic algorithm for the analysis of eye movements from the linear vestibulo-ocular reflex

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It is common in vestibular and oculomotor testing to use a single-frequency (sine) or combination of frequencies [sum-of-sines (SOS)] stimulus for head or target motion. The resulting eye movements typically contain a smooth tracking component, which follows the stimulus, in which are interspersed rapid eye movements (saccades or fast phases). The parameters of the smooth tracking - The amplitude and phase of each component frequency - Are of interest; many methods have been devised that attempt to identify and remove the fast eye movements from the smooth. We describe a new approach to this problem, tailored to both single-frequency and sum-of-sines stimulation of the human linear vestibulo-ocular reflex. An approximate derivative is used to identify fast movements, which are then omitted from further analysis. The remaining points forma series of smooth tracking segments. A genetic algorithm is used to fit these segments together to forma smooth (but disconnected) wave form, by iteratively removing biases due to the missing fast phases. A genetic algorithm is an iterative optimization procedure; it provides a basis for extending this approach to more complex stimulus-response situations. In the SOS case, the genetic algorithm estimates the amplitude and phase values of the component frequencies as well as removing biases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)510-522
Number of pages13
JournalAnnals of biomedical engineering
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2001


  • Nystagmus
  • Oculomotor
  • Pseudorandom sum of sines
  • VOR
  • Vestibular

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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