Background Saccadic eye movement parameters, such as its dynamics, latency and error rate are considered as a quantitative biomarkers of disease severity in HD. They possess potential for quick, non-invasive, objective assessment of cortical and sub-cortical function and when repeated systematically may allow easy tracking of disease progression or evaluation of novel therapies. Subjective evaluation of saccadic function is already included in UHDRS scale, however, most subtle features of saccadic movement cannot be observed without the instrumentation. On the other hand, application of the oculometric equipment is limited by its significantly high costs and complicated testing procedures.
Methods/techniques Authors present Saccadometer Research XY, an integrated system dedicated for rapid, quantitative assessment of horizontal and vertical saccadic eye movement metrics in clinical environment. Subject’s eye movements are captured by a small factor, photo-electric sensor, designed for minimal setup and robust measurement. The stimuli is presented by an integrated, 8-targets laser stimuli generator, bound with the subject’s head, so that external stimuli display and head restraint are not required. The system provides pre programmed set of experiments for both reflex and volitional saccadic responses as well as build-in expert system for automatic saccade detection and classification. It allows to complete the testing procedure within several minutes.
Conclusions Previous Saccadometer models have already proven its usefulness in examination of HD patients. The newest addition allows the measurement of vertical saccades, which are reported now to be more affected in HD than the horizontal.
- eye movement
- Huntington’s disease
- motor assessment