Experimental Brain Research

, 199:195 | Cite as

The role of hand dominance and sensorimotor congruence in voluntary movement

  • Deborah J. SerrienEmail author
  • Michiel M. Spapé
Research Note


The present study evaluated the neural changes due to effector use (unimanual left, unimanual right, and bimanual) and visuomotor conflict induced by mirror-reversed vision during drawing behavior. EEG phase synchronization, expressing interregional communication, showed that visuomotor incongruence perturbed information processing in both hemispheres. Furthermore, it was observed that the left hemisphere became temporally dominant when movements were executed with visuomotor conflict, independent of the performing hand(s). This observation emphasizes the superiority of the left hemisphere to control complex movements. In addition, the functional interactions between the hemispheres were also perturbed due to visuomotor discordance, indicating the crucial role of interhemispheric communication for movement control. These results highlight that functional connectivity patterns provide higher-order coding mechanisms of information processing. The data further underline the significance of the left hemisphere for intricate visuomotor skills.


EEG Functional connectivity Phase synchronization 



This study was supported by grants from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BB/F012454/1) and Research Committee (NRF) of the University of Nottingham. Thanks to E. Georgiadi for initial assistance.


  1. Assmus A, Marshall JC, Noth J, Zilles K, Fink GR (2005) Difficulty of perceptual spatiotemporal integration modulates the neural activity of left inferior parietal cortex. Neuroscience 132:923–927PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Averbeck BB, Chafee MV, Crowe DA, Georgopoulos AP (2003) Neural activity in prefrontal cortex during copying geometrical shapes, I. Single cells encode shape, sequence, and metric parameters. Exp Brain Res 150:127–141PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Byblow WD, Summers JJ, Semjen A, Wuyts IJ, Carson RG (1999) Spontaneous and intentional pattern switching in a multisegmental bimanual coordination task. Motor Control 3:372–393PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Classen J, Gerloff C, Honda M, Hallett M (1998) Integrative visuomotor behavior is associated with interregionally coherent oscillations in the human brain. J Neurophysiol 79:1567–1573PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Contreras-Vidal JL, Kerick SE (2004) Independent component analysis of dynamic brain responses during visuomotor adaptation. Neuroimage 21:936–945PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. de Poel HJ, Peper CL, Beek PJ (2007) Handedness-related asymmetry in coupling strength in bimanual coordination: furthering theory and evidence. Acta Psychol 124:209–237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Delorme A, Makeig S (2004) EEGLAB: an open source toolbox for analysis of single-trial EEG dynamics including independent component analysis. J Neurosci Methods 134:9–21PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Fink GR, Marshall JC, Halligan PW, Frith CD, Driver J, Frackowiack RSJ, Dolan RJ (1999) The neural consequences of conflict between intention and the senses. Brain 122:497–512PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Fisk JD, Goodale MA (1988) The effects of unilateral brain damage on visually guided reaching: hemispheric differences in the nature of the deficit. Exp Brain Res 72:425–435PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Frey SH (2008) Tool use, communicative gesture and cerebral asymmetries in the modern human brain. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B 363:1951–1957CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Friston KJ (2001) Brain function, nonlinear coupling, and neuronal transients. Neuroscientist 7:406–418PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gonzalez CL, Ganel T, Goodale MA (2006) Hemispheric specialization for the visual control of action is independent of handedness. J Neurophysiol 95:3496–3501PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Haaland KY, Delaney HD (1981) Motor deficits after left or right hemisphere damage due to stroke or tumor. Neuropsychologia 19:17–27PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Haaland KY, Elsinger CL, Mayer AR, Durgerian S, Rao SM (2004) Motor sequence complexity and performing hand produce differential patterns of hemispheric lateralization. J Cogn Neurosci 16:621–636PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hummel F, Kirsammer R, Gerloff C (2003) Ipsilateral cortical activation during finger sequences of increasing complexity: representation of movement difficulty or memory load? Clin Neurophysiol 114:605–613PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Inoue K, Kawashima R, Satoh K, Kinomura S, Sugiura M, Goto R, Ito M, Fukuda H (2000) A pet study of visuomotor learning under optical rotation. Neuroimage 11:505–516PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lajoie Y, Paillard J, Teasdale N, Bard C, Fleury M, Forget R, Lamarre Y (1992) Mirror drawing in a deafferented patient and normal subjects: visuoproprioceptive conflict. Neurology 42:1104–1106PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Makuuchi M, Kaminaga T, Sugishita M (2003) Both parietal lobes are involved in drawing: a functional MRI study and implications for constructional apraxia. Brain Res Cogn Brain Res 16:338–347PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Marshall JC, Fink GR (2001) Spatial cognition: where we were and where we are. Neuroimage 14:S2–S7PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Miall RC, Cole J (2007) Evidence for stronger visuo-motor than visuo-proprioceptive conflict during mirror drawing performed by a deafferented subject and control subjects. Exp Brain Res 176:432–439PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Oldfield RC (1971) The assessment and analysis of handedness: the Edinburgh inventory. Neuropsychologia 9:97–113PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Peters M (1980) Why the preferred hand taps more quickly than the non-preferred hand: three experiments on handedness. Can J Psychol 34:62–71Google Scholar
  23. Sainburg RL (2002) Evidence for a dynamic dominance hypothesis of handedness. Exp Brain Res 142:241–258PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Serrien DJ (2009) Functional connectivity patterns during motor behaviour: the impact of past on present activity. Hum Brain Mapp 30:523–531PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Serrien DJ, Strens LH, Oliviero A, Brown P (2002) Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation of the supplementary motor area (SMA) degrades bimanual movement control in humans. Neurosci Lett 328:89–92PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Serrien DJ, Ivry RB, Swinnen SP (2006) Dynamics of hemispheric specialization and integration in the context of motor control. Nat Rev Neurosci 7:160–166PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Stephan KE, Fink GR, Marshall JC (2007) Mechanisms of hemispheric specialization: insights from analyses of connectivity. Neuropsychologia 45:209–228PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Tononi G, McIntosh AR, Russell DP, Edelman GM (1998) Functional clustering: identifying strongly interactive brain regions in neuroimaging data. Neuroimage 7:133–149PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Varela F, Lachaux JP, Rodriguez E, Martinerie J (2001) The brainweb: phase synchronization and large-scale integration. Nat Rev Neurosci 2:229–239PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Verstynen T, Diedrichsen J, Albert N, Aparicio P, Ivry RB (2005) Ipsilateral motor cortex activity during unimanual hand movements relates to task complexity. J Neurophysiol 93:1209–1222PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Wahl M, Lauterbach-Soon B, Hattingen E, Jung P, Singer O, Volz S, Klein JC, Steinmetz H, Ziemann U (2007) Human motor corpus callosum: topography, somatotopy, and link between microstructure and function. J Neurosci 27:12132–12138PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Weiss PH, Rahbari NN, Lux S, Pietrzyk U, Noth J, Fink GR (2006) Processing the spatial configuration of complex actions involves right posterior parietal cortex: an fMRI study with clinical implications. Hum Brain Mapp 27:1004–1014PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Wyke M (1971) The effects of brain lesions on the performance of bilateral arm movements. Neuropsychologia 9:33–42PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of PsychologyUniversity of NottinghamUniversity Park, NottinghamUK

Personalised recommendations