Movement intention is better predicted than attention in the posterior parietal cortex

Rodrigo Quian Quiroga, Lawrence H. Snyder, Aaron P. Batista, He Cui, Richard A. Andersen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

119 Scopus citations


We decoded on a trial-by-trial basis the location of visual targets, as a marker of the locus of attention, and intentions to reach and to saccade in different directions using the activity of neurons in the posterior parietal cortex of two monkeys. Predictions of target locations were significantly worse than predictions of movement plans for the same target locations. Moreover, neural signals in the parietal reach region (PRR) gave better predictions of reaches than saccades, whereas signals in the lateral intraparietal area (LIP) gave better predictions of saccades than reaches. Taking together the activity of both areas, the prediction of either movement in all directions became nearly perfect. These results cannot be explained in terms of an attention effect and support the idea of two segregated populations in the posterior parietal cortex, PRR and LIP, that are involved in different movement plans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3615-3620
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number13
StatePublished - Mar 29 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Attention
  • Motor intention
  • Parietal
  • Population coding
  • Single-trial analysis
  • Vision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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