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Susceptibility of the squirrel monkey to different motion conditionsThe exact stimulus eliciting vomiting in animal studies of motion sickness is difficult to specify because the vestibular stimulation produced by many motion conditions is confounded by voluntary movements with animals. This is an important problem because experiments with animal models of motion sickness can provide useful information about antimotion sickness drugs or the role of neural mechanisms, only when animals are exposed to the same motion stimuli in each experimental session. A series of tests were conducted to determine the susceptibility of 15 adult squirrel monkeys to motion sickness in freely moving and restrained test conditions. Canal stimulation was varied by exposing the monkey in freely moving conditions to varying degrees of angular velocity (60, 90, 120, 150 deg/sec), and in restrained conditions to one angular velocity (150 deg/sec) and to cross-coupling effects of whole-body roll movements during rotation. Otolith stimulation was investigated by using sinusoidal vertical linear acceleration during free movement conditions, and off-vertical rotation and earth-horizontal (BBQ) rotation while restrained. The percentage of freely moving animal vomiting during vertical axis rotation was 27, 93, 86, and 92 for the angular velocities of 60, 90, 120, and 150 deg/sec respectively. None of the monkeys vomited during vertical axis rotation or cross-coupled rotation when restrained. Otolith stimulation appears to be a less provocative stimulus for the squirrel monkey as the percentage of animals vomiting were 13, 0, and 7 for the conditions of free movement during oscillation, restraint during off-vertical, and BBQ rotation respectively. Motion sickness to the point of vomiting occurred regularly only in conditions where self-motion was possible. Such effects could occur because voluntary movement during motion augments vestibular effects by producing self-inflicted cross-coupling, but the failure to elicit vomiting with experimenter-coupling cross-coupling argues against this interpretation. Alternatively, these results might imply that feedback from movement control mechanisms may play an important role in sensory conflict as suggested by Oman's sensory-motor conflict theory.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Fox, Robert A.
(San Jose State Univ. CA., United States)
Daunton, Nancy G.
(NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA, United States)
Coleman, J.
(San Jose State Univ. CA., United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1991
Publication Information
Publication: Self-Motion Perception and Motion Sickness
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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