MOVEMENT RELATED BRAIN MACROPOTENTIALS AND SKILLED MOTOR ACTIONS
Authors: Giuliano Fontani, Silvia Migliorini, Leda Lodi and Fausto Corradeschi
Abstract: Background: Movement Related Brain Macropotentials (MRBMs) are electrical brain potentials occurring before, during and after skilled movements. Specific components of these potentials have been described and it has been reported that they can be recorded also during mental motor imagery and can be influenced by practice. To understand the exact relationship between MRBMs and skilled actions and to verify the hypothesis that motor training could modify MRBMs profile and influence specific components an experiment has been performed in which MRBMs were recorded during the execution of different skilled performance tasks and before and after a period of training. Methods: The experiment has been carried out with 31 healthy male subjects, divided into three groups. Eleven performed the Alert test (A), a simple reaction time test, in which the subject had to press in a precise sequence three keys of a keyboard when a figure appeared on the computer monitor. Ten subjects performed the Choice test (CH), a complex reaction time test, in which they had to press the three keys in a different order when one of two different figures appeared randomly on the screen. Ten subjects performed the Choice test with the addition of a Go/No-Go paradigm (CHNG) in which participants had also to repress an unsuitable response. All subjects were tested before and after 10 days of training. During the trials EEG, EMG and other physiological parameters were recorded. The time of the recorded test was divided into three periods: prestimulus, motor (premotor, motor action, motor completion) and postmotor. Data were collected, averaged and compared by appropriate statistical methods.