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Motor training reduces surround inhibition in the motor cortex

Akkad, H; Di Stasio, F; Tibold, R; Kassavetis, P; Rothwell, JC; Edwards, MJ; (2016) Motor training reduces surround inhibition in the motor cortex. Clinical Neurophysiology , 127 (6) pp. 2482-2488. 10.1016/j.clinph.2016.03.026. Green open access

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Surround inhibition (SI) is thought to facilitate focal contraction of a hand muscle by keeping nearby muscles silent. Unexpectedly, SI is reduced in skilled pianists. We tested whether repeated practice of focal contraction in non-pianists could reduce SI. METHODS: Motor-evoked potentials were elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation in the relaxed abductor digiti minimi randomly at the onset and 5s after offset of a 2s focal contraction (10% maximum) of the first dorsal interosseous (FDI). Over 5 blocks of 40 trials participants obtained points for increasing contraction speed and stability in FDI. In a final block, the interval between contractions was varied randomly to increase attention to the task. RESULTS: Over the first 5 blocks, SI declined as performance (points scored) improved. In the final "attention" block SI increased towards baseline without affecting performance. CONCLUSIONS: Although SI may be useful during the early stages of learning, skilled focal finger movement does not require SI to prevent activity in non-involved muscles. This could be due to better targeting of the excitatory command to move. Results from the final block suggest that increased attention can re-engage SI when task parameters change. SIGNIFICANCE: SI is not necessary for successful focal contraction, but may contribute during learning and during attention to task.

Type: Article
Title: Motor training reduces surround inhibition in the motor cortex
Location: Netherlands
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.clinph.2016.03.026
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clinph.2016.03.026
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/. The final published article is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clinph.2016.03.026
Keywords: Attention, Motor-evoked potentials, Surround inhibition, TMS
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Clinical and Movement Neurosciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1494737
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