Neural integration of reaching and posture: interhemispheric spike correlations in cat motor cortex
To study the interlimb coordination of reaching and postural movements, chronically implanted microelectrodes were used to record single unit activity from the primary motor cortex (MI) of cats during performance of a trained reaching task. Recordings were made from both cerebral hemispheres to record neurons that modulated their activity during reaching (reach-related neurons) and supportive (posture-related neurons) movements of either forelimb. Evidence of temporal associations in the activities of simultaneously recorded reach- and posture-related neurons was evaluated using shuffle-corrected cross correlograms. The spike activity of approximately 34% of reach-related neurons was temporally correlated with the spike activity of simultaneously recorded posture-related neurons in the opposite motor cortex. Significant associations in the spike activity of neurons recorded from homotopic representational areas of the motor cortex in opposite hemispheres have not previously been reported. These interactions may have an important role in the coordination of opposite forelimbs during reaching movements and postural actions.
KeywordsMovement control Callosal connections Postural control Spike synchrony
We thank the Australian Neuromuscular Research Institute and Curtin University of Technology for support, and the staff of Animal House in A Block, QEII Medical Centre for help with animals.
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