Article

Brain activation during human finger extension and flexion movements

Department of Biomedical Engineering/ND20, The Lerner Research Institute, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA
Brain Research (Impact Factor: 2.83). 03/2000; 856(1-2):291-300. DOI: 10.1016/S0006-8993(99)02385-9

ABSTRACT Corticospinal projections to the motor neuron pool of upper-limb extensor muscles have been reported to differ from those of the flexor muscles in humans and other primates. The influence of this difference on the central nervous system control for extension and flexion movements is unknown. Cortical activation during thumb extension and flexion movements of eight human volunteers was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), which detects signal changes caused by an alteration in the local blood oxygenation level. Although the relative activity of the extensor and flexor muscles of the thumb was similar, the brain volume activated during extension was substantially larger than that during flexion. These fMRI results were confirmed by measurements of EEG-derived movement-related cortical potential. Higher brain activity during thumb extension movement may be a result of differential corticospinal, and possibly other pathway projections to the motoneuron pools of extensor and flexor muscles of upper the extremities.

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    • "finger extension) generate stronger patterns in the ongoing EEG compared to other movements (e.g. natural finger flexion) [4] [5] [6]. At the same time, it has been reported that right and left movements (regardless of what the movement is) generate patterns in "
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    • "Previous experiments using fMRI (Stephan et al., 1999; Jantzen et al., 2002, 2004; Mayville et al., 2002), magnetoencephalography (MEG) (Kelso et al., 1992; Fuchs et al., 2000) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) (Meyer-Lindenberg et al., 2002; Steyvers et al., 2003) have shown that coordination patterns of differing behavioral stability (Kelso et al., 1990; Kelso, 1995) are supported by different patterns of neural activity. If stability differences and underlying differences in neural activity (Yue et al., 2000; Mayville et al., 2002) are due only to neuromusculoskeletal factors, which are ultimately linked to cerebral processes through the production of motor output and the resulting feedback, these neural differences should be extinguished (or at least greatly diminished) during imagination conditions. However, if both perceptual and motor processes play a role in determining the stability of coordination (Kelso et al., 2001), some aspects of the coordinationdependent differences observed between the two neural activation patterns should persist, even in the absence of overt movement. "
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