Brain Topography

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 152–156 | Cite as

Repetition-Induced Plasticity of Motor Representations of Action Sounds

  • Nathalie M.-P. Bourquin
  • Alexandre Simonin
  • Stephanie Clarke
Original Paper


Action-related sounds are known to increase the excitability of motoneurones within the primary motor cortex (M1), but the role of this auditory input remains unclear. We investigated repetition priming-induced plasticity, which is characteristic of semantic representations, in M1 by applying transcranial magnetic stimulation pulses to the hand area. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were larger while subjects were listening to sounds related versus unrelated to manual actions. Repeated exposure to the same manual-action-related sound yielded a significant decrease in MEPs when right, hand area was stimulated; no repetition effect was observed for manual-action-unrelated sounds. The shared repetition priming characteristics suggest that auditory input to the right primary motor cortex is part of auditory semantic representations.


Priming Repetition suppression TMS MEP Action-related sound Motor plasticity 



This work was supported by the Swiss National Science grants 3200030-124897 and 320030B-141177 to SC and was carried out in the TMS lab of CIBM, CHUV. We thank M. Murray for support in setting up the experiment.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nathalie M.-P. Bourquin
    • 1
  • Alexandre Simonin
    • 1
  • Stephanie Clarke
    • 1
  1. 1.Service de Neuropsychologie et de NeuroréhabilitationCHUV, Université de LausanneLausanneSwitzerland

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