Research Unit for Nystagmus (RUN)
Nystagmus is a constant involuntary movement of the eyes. The fact that the eyes are constantly moving can have a negative impact on vision. Compared to research into other eye conditions, research into nystagmus is still relatively new. As a result there are still many problems yet to be investigated.
Research Unit for Nystagmus (RUN) was established in 2000 by Prof. Jon Erichsen and his colleagues with the aim of improving knowledge of nystagmus and its effects on vision and visual function. The research unit is primarily concerned with visual perception and visual performance in people with nystagmus, as well as how environmental factors affect the movements of the eyes and their vision.
RUN has a cohort of extremely supportive volunteers with nystagmus who take part in our investigations and to whom we are very grateful.
We are actively engaged with two UK based nystagmus charities. Nystagmus Network UK has previously provided us with funding to undertake our research, and we currently maintain parts of the website for the research-specific charity INvision.
Impact of our research
In recent years, RUN has made a number of discoveries dispelling anecdotal theories and identifying key factors in visual problems experienced by people who suffer with nystagmus. This has led to publications in the high impact optical journal, Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science (IOVS).
- Dunn, M. et al. 2017. The effect of gaze angle on visual acuity in infantile nystagmus. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 58 (1), pp.642-650. (10.1167/iovs.16-20370)
- Harrison, J. J. et al. 2015. Quick phases of infantile nystagmus show the saccadic inhibition effect. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 56 , pp.1594-1600. (10.1167/iovs.14-15655)
- Dunn, M. et al. 2015. Visual processing in infantile nystagmus is not slow. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science 56 (9), pp.5094-5101. (10.1167/iovs.15-16977)
- Dunn, M. et al. 2014. Author response: grating visual acuity in infantile nystagmus in the absence of image motion. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 55 (8), pp.4955-4957. (10.1167/iovs.14-15070)
- Dunn, M. et al. 2014. Grating visual acuity in infantile nystagmus in the absence of image motion. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 55 (4), pp.2682-2686. (10.1167/iovs.13-13455)
- Jones, P. H. et al. 2013. Stress and visual function in infantile nystagmus syndrome. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 54 (13), pp.7943-7951. (10.1167/iovs.13-12560)
- Wiggins, D. et al. 2007. Infantile nystagmus adapts to visual demand. Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science 48 (5), pp.2089-2094. (10.1167/iovs.06-1108)
We are extremely grateful for the ongoing help from our cohort of volunteers with nystagmus and are always on the lookout for more people who are willing to visit us to take part in studies. We are usually able to contribute travel costs for visits from the surrounding area.
At present we are not recruiting for specific studies, but if you have nystagmus and would like to be contacted in the future please email Jon Erichsen: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below is a summary of our current projects.
Motion sensitivity in infantile nystagmus
Through funding from Fight for Sight and Nystagmus Network UK via the Small Grant Awards Schemes, we are currently investigating motion perception in infantile nystagmus using established psychophysical procedures, in addition to well-known illusions of motion. One such illusion, the Filehne effect, is the illusory perception of movement in stationary objects. By studying these illusions in the context of infantile nystagmus, we seek to gain an understanding of how a lack of oscillopsia (the perception of the world moving to-and-fro) is achieved, despite the incessant involuntary movements of the eyes.
We are currently recruiting subjects with infantile nystagmus to take part in this study. For more information, or to volunteer to take part, please email Lee McIlreavey: email@example.com.
Lecturer, Assessment & Feedback Lead
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Honorary Visiting Professor