Hemispheric asymmetry and somatotopy of afferent inhibition in healthy humans

Department of Neurology, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, The Netherlands.
Experimental Brain Research (Impact Factor: 2.04). 12/2005; 167(2):211-9. DOI: 10.1007/s00221-005-0014-1
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT A conditioning electrical stimulus to a digital nerve can inhibit the motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) in adjacent hand muscles elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to the contralateral primary motor cortex (M1) when given 25-50 ms before the TMS pulse. This is referred to as short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI). We studied inter-hemispheric differences (Experiment 1) and within-limb somatotopy (Experiment 2) of SAI in healthy right-handers. In Experiment 1, conditioning electrical pulses were applied to the right or left index finger (D2) and MEPs were recorded from relaxed first dorsal interosseus (FDI) and abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles ipsilateral to the conditioning stimulus. We found that SAI was more pronounced in right hand muscles. In Experiment 2, electrical stimulation was applied to the right D2 and MEPs were recorded from ipsilateral FDI, extensor digitorum communis (EDC) and biceps brachii (BB) muscles. The amount of SAI did not differ between FDI, EDC and BB muscles. These data demonstrate inter-hemispheric differences in the processing of cutaneous input from the hand, with stronger SAI in the dominant left hemisphere. We also found that SAI occurred not only in hand muscles adjacent to electrical digital stimulation, but also in distant hand and forearm and also proximal arm muscles. This suggests that SAI induced by electrical D2 stimulation is not focal and somatotopically specific, but a more widespread inhibitory phenomenon.

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    • "Electromyographic (EMG) activity was recorded using Ag-AgCl surface electrodes placed over the first dorsal interosseus (FDI) of the left hand. The FDI was chosen because there is an extensive body of literature examining the effect of cutaneous stimulation of the index fingertip on TMS-evoked responses in this muscle (Tokimura et al., 2000; Helmich et al., 2005; Tamburin et al., 2005; Bikmullina et al., 2009). The EMG signal was sampled at 2000 kHz, digitalised using an analogue-to-digital converter (Power 1401II; Cambridge Electronics Design, Cambridge, UK) and stored on a computer for off-line data analysis. "
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    ABSTRACT: Moving and interacting with the world requires that the sensory and motor systems share information, but while some information about tactile events is preserved during sensorimotor transfer the spatial specificity of this information is unknown. Afferent inhibition (AI) studies, in which corticospinal excitability (CSE) is inhibited when a single tactile stimulus is presented before a transcranial magnetic stimulation pulse over the motor cortex, offer contradictory results regarding the sensory-to-motor transfer of spatial information. Here, we combined the techniques of AI and tactile repetition suppression (the decreased neurophysiological response following double stimulation of the same vs. different fingers) to investigate whether topographic information is preserved in the sensory-to-motor transfer in humans. We developed a double AI paradigm to examine both spatial (same vs. different finger) and temporal (short vs. long delay) aspects of sensorimotor interactions. Two consecutive electrocutaneous stimuli (separated by either 30 or 125 ms) were delivered to either the same or different fingers on the left hand (i.e. index finger stimulated twice or middle finger stimulated before index finger). Information about which fingers were stimulated was reflected in the size of the motor responses in a time-constrained manner: CSE was modulated differently by same and different finger stimulation only when the two stimuli were separated by the short delay (P = 0.004). We demonstrate that the well-known response of the somatosensory cortices following repetitive stimulation is mirrored in the motor cortex and that CSE is modulated as a function of the temporal and spatial relationship between afferent stimuli. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 03/2015; 41(11). DOI:10.1111/ejn.12890 · 3.18 Impact Factor
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    • "In addition to circuitry probed within and between motor cortices, other neural interactions can be assessed by pairing peripheral nerve stimulation or cutaneous stimulation of the hand with a TMS pulse over M1. ISIs of approximately 20–50 ms or 200–1000 ms decrease motor excitability, effects known as short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI) or long-latency afferent inhibition (LAI), respectively [47] [48] [49]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Hand function depends on sensory feedback to direct an appropriate motor response. There is clear evidence that somatosensory cortices modulate motor behaviour and physiology within primary motor cortex. However, this information is mainly from research in animals and the bridge to human hand control is needed. Emerging evidence in humans supports the notion that somatosensory cortices modulate motor behaviour, physiology and sensory perception. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) allows for the investigation of primary and higher-order somatosensory cortices and their role in control of hand movement in humans. This review provides a summary of several TMS protocols in the investigation of hand control via the somatosensory cortices. TMS plasticity inducing protocols reviewed include paired associative stimulation, repetitive TMS, theta-burst stimulation as well as other techniques that aim to modulate cortical excitability in sensorimotor cortices. Although the discussed techniques may modulate cortical excitability, careful consideration of experimental design is needed to isolate factors that may interfere with desired results of the plasticity-inducing protocol, specifically events that may lead to metaplasticity within the targeted cortex.
    Neural Plasticity 05/2012; 2012(2090-5904):350574. DOI:10.1155/2012/350574 · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    • "The intensity was set to 36 perceptual threshold. To examine SAI, the peripheral stimulus was delivered 40 ms prior to TMS of left M1 yield conditioned (C) MEPs (Helmich et al., 2005). Twenty NC and C MEPs were collected in random order at each time point. "
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    ABSTRACT: Repetitive mirror symmetric bilateral upper limb may be a suitable priming technique for upper limb rehabilitation after stroke. Here we demonstrate neurophysiological and behavioural after-effects in healthy participants after priming with 20 minutes of repetitive active-passive bimanual wrist flexion and extension in a mirror symmetric pattern with respect to the body midline (MIR) compared to an control priming condition with alternating flexion-extension (ALT). Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) indicated that corticomotor excitability (CME) of the passive hemisphere remained elevated compared to baseline for at least 30 minutes after MIR but not ALT, evidenced by an increase in the size of motor evoked potentials in ECR and FCR. Short and long-latency intracortical inhibition (SICI, LICI), short afferent inhibition (SAI) and interhemispheric inhibition (IHI) were also examined using pairs of stimuli. LICI differed between patterns, with less LICI after MIR compared with ALT, and an effect of pattern on IHI, with reduced IHI in passive FCR 15 minutes after MIR compared with ALT and baseline. There was no effect of pattern on SAI or FCR H-reflex. Similarly, SICI remained unchanged after 20 minutes of MIR. We then had participants complete a timed manual dexterity motor learning task with the passive hand during, immediately after, and 24 hours after MIR or control priming. The rate of task completion was faster with MIR priming compared to control conditions. Finally, ECR and FCR MEPs were examined within a pre-movement facilitation paradigm of wrist extension before and after MIR. ECR, but not FCR, MEPs were consistently facilitated before and after MIR, demonstrating no degradation of selective muscle activation. In summary, mirror symmetric active-passive bimanual movement increases CME and can enhance motor learning without degradation of muscle selectivity. These findings rationalise the use of mirror symmetric bimanual movement as a priming modality in post-stroke upper limb rehabilitation.
    PLoS ONE 03/2012; 7(3):e33882. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0033882 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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