Cortical and behavioral adaptations in response to short-term inphase versus antiphase bimanual movement training.

Research paper by Alison L AL Smith, W Richard WR Staines

Indexed on: 17 Aug '10Published on: 17 Aug '10Published in: Experimental Brain Research


Bimanual movement training (BMT) may be an effective rehabilitative protocol for movement-related deficits following a stroke; however, it is unclear how varying types of BMT induce cortical adaptations in the healthy population. Moreover, we lack a methodology to measure cortical adaptations in response to modes of movement training. Therefore, the present study measured the cued movement-related potential (MRP) to investigate cortical adaptations during cued inphase versus antiphase BMT that transferred to a unimanual task and how cortical modulations related to behavior. Three specific hypotheses were investigated: (1) cued inphase BMT would induce cortical adaptations within regions subserving motor preparation and movement execution, (2) repetitive cued unimanual training would induce cortical activity modulations associated with motor execution, and (3) increased cortical activity would be associated with enhanced performance. On three separate days, EEG was recorded from 22 electrodes during three types of cued movement training: inphase BMT, antiphase BMT and repetitive unimanual movement, in addition to pre- and post-training unimanual movement trials involving cued right wrist flexion. The MRP was measured for each repetition during each trial. Results showed a significant training-related increase in preparatory activation correlated with a behavioral enhancement following cued inphase BMT. This effect was not attributable to a change in arousal. No significant training-related modulation occurred in response to cued antiphase BMT or repetitive unimanual movement training. These results suggest that cortical adaptations in relation to the preparation of a cued movement enhance in response to cued inphase BMT, and the MRP is an effective measurement tool to assess training-related adaptations in response to inphase BMT specifically.