Inhibition of return and oculomotor control in the blind.
Röder B., Spence C., Rösler F.
Our attentional systems orient reflexively to novel environmental stimuli. Such attentive orienting is typically followed by a prolonged period of inhibition, known as inhibition of return (IOR), thought to be linked to the eye movement system. It is widely believed that IOR may provide a tagging mechanism that prevents perseveration, and thus facilitates attentional search. Using a tactile variant of the peripheral spatial cuing paradigm, we show IOR in congenitally blind adults and in an individual who had no eyes. These results demonstrate for the first time that spatial IOR can occur in the absence of oculomotor control.