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  • 1
    ISSN: 1460-9568
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Previous studies have shown that activity of neuronal populations in the primary motor cortex (MI), processed by the population vector method, faithfully predicts upcoming movements. In our previous studies we found that single neurons responded differently during movements of one arm vs. combined movements of the two arms. It was, therefore, not clear whether the population vector approach could produce reliable movement predictions also for bimanual movements. This study tests this question by comparing the predictive quality of population vectors for unimanual and bimanual arm movements. We designed a bimanual motor task that requires coordinated movements of the two arms, in which each arm may move in eight directions, and recorded single unit activity in the MI of two rhesus (Macaca mulatta) monkeys during the performance of unimanual and bimanual arm movements. We analysed the activity of 212 MI cells from both hemispheres and found that, despite bimanual related activity, the directional tuning and preferred directions of most cells were preserved in unimanual and bimanual movements. We demonstrate that population vectors, constructed from the activity of MI cells, predict accurately the direction of movement both for unimanual and for bimanual movements even when the two arms move simultaneously in different directions.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1460-9568
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is used to investigate the basal ganglia (BG)–cortex circuit using a rat model of Parkinson's disease (PD). The model involves a unilateral destruction of the right substantia nigra by intranigral injection of the dopaminergic neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine. Volume of cortical activity was measured by the blood oxygenation level-dependent contrast method while applying electrical forepaw stimulation. The main findings are the following. (i) Contrary to the predictions of the classic model but in line with recent experimental results (positron emission tomography, fMRI and electrophysiology), an increased cortical activity in the sensorimotor cortex of PD rats compared with sham-operated or normal rats was found. (ii) A diffuse neuronal activity at large cortical areas that were not related directly to the stimulation used, was observed. (iii) No difference was found between the lesion and the nonlesion hemispheres when the left or the right forepaw was stimulated; both cortices show significant overactivation of the sensorimotor cortices in addition to diffuse cortical activation. The last finding could be explained by either corticocortical connections or by bilateral BG–cortex connections. These finding suggest that the mutual influence of the two hemispheres is important in the pathophysiology of the BG–cortex circuit and might be crucial in predicting treatments.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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