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M1 contributes to the intrinsic but not the extrinsic components of motor-skills

Romei, V and Thut, G and Ramos-Estebanez, C and Pascual-Leone, A (2009) 'M1 contributes to the intrinsic but not the extrinsic components of motor-skills.' Cortex, 45 (9). 1058 - 1064. ISSN 0010-9452

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Procedural skills consist of several components that can be simultaneously acquired. During a motor-learning task we can distinguish between how a "movement" is performed (intrinsic component) and the spatial-related (extrinsic) component of this movement. The intrinsic movement component is thought to be supported by motor loops, including primary motor cortex (M1) as assessed with neuroimaging studies. Here we want to test further whether M1 makes a critical contribution to the movement rather than spatial-related component of skill-learning. To this purpose, we used repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) and the serial reaction time (SRT) task. Twenty right-handed participants performed the SRT-task starting with their left or right hand. After this learning session, participants switched to the untrained hand by performing original (spatial-related) and mirror-ordered (movement-based) sequences. rTMS was applied to M1 ipsi- or contralateral to the transfer-hand and both sequences were retested. Results revealed rTMS-interference with motor-skill transfer of mirror-ordered but not original sequences, showing that M1 is critically involved in the retrieval/transformation of the intrinsic but not the extrinsic movement coordinates. rTMS-interference in the mirror-condition consisted of both (i) disruption and (ii) release of motor-skill transfer depending on the stimulated hemisphere and on transfer-hand. The pattern of results suggests (i) contralateral (right) M1 involvement in retrieval/transformation of motor information during left-hand reproduction of previously acquired right-hand motor-skills; and (ii) modulatory interactions of inhibitory nature from the dominant (left) to the non-dominant (right) M1 in the same transfer-condition. These results provide further evidence that M1 is essential to intrinsic movement-based skill-learning and novel insight on models of motor-learning and hemispheric specialization, suggesting the involvement of interhemispheric inhibition. © 2009 Elsevier Srl. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2013 14:30
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2019 16:16

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