Sometime last year, I believe it was at the AOA meeting, I was chatting with our colleague Vince Vicci when he said: “Oh, I’ve got to tell you something that will be of interest. I’ve been collaborating with researchers in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at NJIT, and we’ve come up with some exciting fMRI data that we’re going to publish.”
I’ll say! What a joy it was to receive the December issue of Optometry and Vision Science, the journal of the American Academy of Optometry, and find Vince’s article. To my knowledge, this is the first study of its kind involving changes in clinical vision therapy measures pre and post therapy correlated with fMRI findings. The experimental paradigm, pictured in the photo above, is ingenious. This is a highly significant paper because it shows how widely distributed changes in the visual system are as a result of the therapy conducted. The neural correlates of changes in the brain occurred in:
1) dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLFPC)
2) frontal lobe areas containing the frontal eye fields (FEF), supplemental eye field (SEF), and medial frontal gyrus (MFG)
3) parietal lobe areas conatining the parietal eye field (PEF), the inferior parietal area, and Brodmann areas 39/40
4) the cerebellum
Congratulations to Dr. Vicci and his colleagues from NJIT, Kessler and UMDNJ for a magnificent contribution to the research and clinical basis of optometric vision therapy.