Sensorimotor integration is essential for successful motor control and the somatosensory modality has been shown to have strong effects on the execution of motor plans. The primary (SI) and the secondary somatosensory (SII) cortices are known to differ in their neuroanatomical connections to prefrontal areas, as well as in their involvement to encode cognitive aspects of tactile processing. Here, we ask whether the area-specific processing architecture or the structural neuroanatomical connections with prefrontal areas determine the efficacy of sensorimotor integration processes for motor control. In a system neurophysiological study including EEG signal decomposition (i.e., residue iteration decomposition, RIDE) and source localization, we investigated this question using vibrotactile stimuli optimized for SI or SII processing. The behavioral data show that when being triggered via the SI area, inhibitory control of motor processes is stronger as when being triggered via the SII area. On a neurophysiological level, these effects were reflected in the C-cluster as a result of a temporal decomposition of EEG data, indicating that the sensory processes affecting motor inhibition modulate the response selection level. These modulations were associated with a stronger activation of the right inferior frontal gyrus extending to the right middle frontal gyrus as parts of a network known to be involved in inhibitory motor control when response inhibition is triggered over SI. In addition, areas important for sensorimotor integration like the postcentral gyrus and superior parietal cortex showed activation differences. The data suggest that connection patterns are more important for sensorimotor integration and control than the more restricted area-specific processing architecture.
Brain Structure and Function – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 15, 2017
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