Video encyclopedia

Pupillary light reflex

The pupillary light reflex (PLR) or photopupillary reflex is a reflex that controls the diameter of the pupil, in response to the intensity (luminance) of light that falls on the retinal ganglion cells of the retina in the back of the eye, thereby assisting in adaptation to various levels of lightness/darkness. A greater intensity of light causes the pupil to constrict, whereas a lower intensity of light causes the pupil to dilate. Thus, the pupillary light reflex regulates the intensity of light entering the eye. Light shone into one eye will cause both pupils to constrict.


  • General 

  • Terminology 

  • Neural pathway anatomy 

  • Clinical significance 

  • Mathematical model