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Sample records for sustained sensorimotor impairments

  1. Prenatal exposure to fenugreek impairs sensorimotor development and the operation of spinal cord networks in mice.

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    Loubna Khalki

    Full Text Available Fenugreek is a medicinal plant whose seeds are widely used in traditional medicine, mainly for its laxative, galactagogue and antidiabetic effects. However, consumption of fenugreek seeds during pregnancy has been associated with a range of congenital malformations, including hydrocephalus, anencephaly and spina bifida in humans. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effects of prenatal treatment of fenugreek seeds on the development of sensorimotor functions from birth to young adults. Pregnant mice were treated by gavage with 1 g/kg/day of lyophilized fenugreek seeds aqueous extract (FSAE or distilled water during the gestational period. Behavioral tests revealed in prenatally treated mice a significant delay in righting, cliff avoidance, negative geotaxis responses and the swimming development. In addition, extracellular recording of motor output in spinal cord isolated from neonatal mice showed that the frequency of spontaneous activity and fictive locomotion was reduced in FSAE-exposed mice. On the other hand, the cross-correlation coefficient in control mice was significantly more negative than in treated animals indicating that alternating patterns are deteriorated in FSAE-treated animals. At advanced age, prenatally treated mice displayed altered locomotor coordination in the rotarod test and also changes in static and dynamic parameters assessed by the CatWalk automated gait analysis system. We conclude that FSAE impairs sensorimotor and coordination functions not only in neonates but also in adult mice. Moreover, spinal neuronal networks are less excitable in prenatally FSAE-exposed mice suggesting that modifications within the central nervous system are responsible, at least in part, for the motor impairments.

  2. Sensorimotor and Cognitive Predictors of Impaired Gait Adaptability in Older People.

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    Caetano, Maria Joana D; Menant, Jasmine C; Schoene, Daniel; Pelicioni, Paulo H S; Sturnieks, Daina L; Lord, Stephen R

    2017-09-01

    The ability to adapt gait when negotiating unexpected hazards is crucial to maintain stability and avoid falling. This study investigated whether impaired gait adaptability in a task including obstacle and stepping targets is associated with cognitive and sensorimotor capacities in older adults. Fifty healthy older adults (74±7 years) were instructed to either (a) avoid an obstacle at usual step distance or (b) step onto a target at either a short or long step distance projected on a walkway two heel strikes ahead and then continue walking. Participants also completed cognitive and sensorimotor function assessments. Stroop test and reaction time performance significantly discriminated between participants who did and did not make stepping errors, and poorer Trail-Making test performance predicted shorter penultimate step length in the obstacle avoidance condition. Slower reaction time predicted poorer stepping accuracy; increased postural sway, weaker quadriceps strength, and poorer Stroop and Trail-Making test performances predicted increased number of steps taken to approach the target/obstacle and shorter step length; and increased postural sway and higher concern about falling predicted slower step velocity. Superior executive function, fast processing speed, and good muscle strength and balance were all associated with successful gait adaptability. Processing speed appears particularly important for precise foot placements; cognitive capacity for step length adjustments; and early and/or additional cognitive processing involving the inhibition of a stepping pattern for obstacle avoidance. This information may facilitate fall risk assessments and fall prevention strategies. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Brief postnatal exposure to phenobarbital impairs passive avoidance learning and sensorimotor gating in rats.

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    Gutherz, Samuel B; Kulick, Catherine V; Soper, Colin; Kondratyev, Alexei; Gale, Karen; Forcelli, Patrick A

    2014-08-01

    Phenobarbital is the most commonly utilized drug for the treatment of neonatal seizures. However, mounting preclinical evidence suggests that even brief exposure to phenobarbital in the neonatal period can induce neuronal apoptosis, alterations in synaptic development, and long-lasting changes in behavioral functions. In the present report, we treated neonatal rat pups with phenobarbital and evaluated behavior in adulthood. Pups were treated initially with a loading dose (80 mg/kg) on postnatal day (P)7 and with a lower dose (40 mg/kg) on P8 and P9. We examined sensorimotor gating (prepulse inhibition), passive avoidance, and conditioned place preference for cocaine when the animals reached adulthood. Consistent with our previous reports, we found that three days of neonatal exposure to phenobarbital significantly impaired prepulse inhibition compared with vehicle-exposed control animals. Using a step-though passive avoidance paradigm, we found that animals exposed to phenobarbital as neonates and tested as adults showed significant deficits in passive avoidance retention compared with matched controls, indicating impairment in associative memory and/or recall. Finally, we examined place preference conditioning in response to cocaine. Phenobarbital exposure did not alter the normal conditioned place preference associated with cocaine exposure. Our findings expand the profile of behavioral toxicity induced by phenobarbital. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Brief postnatal exposure to phenobarbital impairs passive-avoidance learning and sensorimotor gating in rats

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    Gutherz, Samuel B.; Kulick, Catherine V.; Soper, Colin; Kondratyev, Alexei; Gale, Karen; Forcelli, Patrick A.

    2014-01-01

    Phenobarbital is the most commonly utilized drug for the treatment of neonatal seizures. However, mounting preclinical evidence suggests that even brief exposure to phenobarbital in the neonatal period can induce neuronal apoptosis, alterations in synaptic development, and long-lasting changes in behavioral functions. In the present report, we treated neonatal rat pups with phenobarbital and evaluated behavior in adulthood. Pups were treated initially with a loading dose (80mg/kg) on postnatal day (P)7 and with a lower dose (40 mg/kg) on P8 and P9. We examined sensorimotor gating (prepulse inhibition), passive avoidance, and conditioned place preference to cocaine when the animals reached adulthood. Consistent with our previous reports, we found that three days of neonatal exposure to phenobarbital significantly impaired prepulse inhibition as compared to vehicle-exposed control animals. Using a step-though passive avoidance paradigm, we found that animals exposed to phenobarbital as neonates and tested as adults showed significant deficits in passive avoidance retention as compared to matched controls, indicating impairment in associative memory and/or recall. Finally, we examined place preference conditioning in response to cocaine. Phenobarbital exposure did not alter the normal conditioned place preference associated with cocaine exposure. Our findings expand the profile of behavioral toxicity induced by phenobarbital. PMID:25112558

  5. Adaptation of sensorimotor coupling in postural control is impaired by sleep deprivation.

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    Stefane A Aguiar

    Full Text Available The purpose of the study was to investigate the effects of sleep deprivation (SD in adaptation of the coupling between visual information and body sway in young adults' postural control due to changes in optic flow characteristics. Fifteen young adults were kept awake for approximately 25 hours and formed the SD group, while fifteen adults who slept normally the night before the experiment participated as part of the control group. All participants stood as still as possible in a moving room before and after being exposed to one trial with higher amplitude and velocity of room movement. Postural performance and the coupling between visual information, provided by a moving room, and body sway were examined. Results showed that after an abrupt change in visual cues, larger amplitude, and higher velocity of the room, the influence of room motion on body sway was decreased in both groups. However, such a decrease was less pronounced in sleep deprived as compared to control subjects. Sleep deprived adults were able to adapt motor responses to the environmental change provided by the increase in room motion amplitude. Nevertheless, they were not as efficient as control subjects in doing so, which demonstrates that SD impairs the ability to adapt sensorimotor coupling while controlling posture when a perturbation occurs.

  6. A jacket for assisting sensorimotor-related impairments and spatial perception

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blumenstein, Tobias; Turova, Varvara; Alves-Pinto, Ana; Lampe, Renée

    2017-01-01

    A sensorimotor jacket, which is able to measure distances to nearby objects with ultrasonic sensors and to transmit information about distances via vibrating transducers, has been designed with the aim of improving the spatial awareness of patients with cerebral palsy and to facilitate spatial orientation for blind people. The efficiency was tested for patients diagnosed with cerebral palsy, blind participants and healthy people. A positive impact of the sensorimotor jacket on the performance in a spatial task has been established both in patients with cerebral palsy and blind participants. Moreover, for patients with cerebral palsy, the training effect was visible after only three training exercises. (paper)

  7. Sensorimotor gating impairments induced by MK-801 treatment may be reduced by tolerance effect and by familiarization in monkeys

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    Saletti, Patricia G.; Maior, Rafael S.; Hori, Etsuro; Nishijo, Hisao; Tomaz, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Dizocilpine (MK-801) is a non-competitive NMDA antagonist that induces schizophreniclike effects. It is therefore widely used in experimental models of schizophrenia including prepulse inhibition (PPI) impairments in rodents. Nevertheless, MK-801 has never been tested in monkeys on a PPI paradigm. In order to evaluate MK-801 effects on monkeys’ PPI, we tested eight capuchin monkeys (Sapajus spp.) using three different doses of MK-801 (0.01; 0.02; 0.03 mg/kg). Results show PPI impairment in acute administration of the highest dose (0.03 mg/kg). PPI impairment induced by MK-801 was reversed by re-exposure to the PPI test throughout treatment trials, in contrast with rodent studies. These results indicate that tolerance effect and familiarization with PPI test may reduce the sensorimotor gating deficits induced by MK-801 in monkeys, suggesting a drug-training interaction. PMID:26441660

  8. Electroacupunctre improves motor impairment via inhibition of microglia-mediated neuroinflammation in the sensorimotor cortex after ischemic stroke.

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    Liu, Weilin; Wang, Xian; Yang, Shanli; Huang, Jia; Xue, Xiehua; Zheng, Yi; Shang, Guanhao; Tao, Jing; Chen, Lidian

    2016-04-15

    Electroacupuncture (EA) is one of the safety and effective therapies for improving neurological and sensorimotor impairment via blockade of inappropriate inflammatory responses. However, the mechanisms of anti-inflammation involved is far from been fully elucidated. Focal cerebral ischemic stroke was administered by the middle cerebral artery occlusion and reperfusion (MCAO/R) surgery. The MCAO/R rats were accepted EA treatment at the LI 11 and ST 36 acupoints for consecutive 3days. The neurological outcome, animal behaviors test and molecular biology assays were used to evaluate the MCAO/R model and therapeutic effect of EA. EA treatment for MCAO rats showed a significant reduction in the infarct volumes accompanied by functional recovery in mNSS outcomes, motor function performances. The possible mechanisms that EA treatment attenuated the over-activation of Iba-1 and ED1 positive microglia in the peri-infract sensorimotor cortex. Simultaneously, both tissue and serum protein levels of the tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were decreased by EA treatment in MCAO/R injured rats. The levels of inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6) were decreased in the peri-infract sensorimotor cortex and blood serum of MCAO/R injured rats after EA treatment. Furthermore, we found that EA treatment prevented from the nucleus translocation of NF-κB p65 and suppressed the expression of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38 MAPK) and myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88) in the peri-infract sensorimotor cortex. The findings from this study indicated that EA improved the motor impairment via inhibition of microglia-mediated neuroinflammation that invoked NF-κB p65, p38 MAPK and MyD88 produced proinflammatory cytokine in the peri-infract sensorimotor cortex of rats following ischemic stroke. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Evidence of impaired brain activity balance after passive sensorimotor stimulation in multiple sclerosis.

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    Nikolaos Petsas

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Examination of sensorimotor activation alone in multiple sclerosis (MS patients may not yield a comprehensive view of cerebral response to task stimulation. Additional information may be obtained by examining the negative BOLD response (deactivation. Aim of this work was to characterize activation and deactivation patterns during passive hand movements in MS patients. METHODS: 13 relapsing remitting-MS patients (RRMS, 18 secondary progressive-MS patients (SPMS and 15 healthy controls (HC underwent an fMRI study during passive right-hand movements. Activation and deactivation contrasts in the three groups were entered into ANOVA, age and gender corrected. Post-hoc analysis was performed with one-sample and two-sample t-tests. For each patient we obtained lesion volume (LV from both T1- and T2-weighted images. RESULTS: Activations showed a progressive extension to the ipsilateral brain hemisphere according to the group and the clinical form (HCsensorimotor areas was reduced in both patient groups with respect to HC. Deactivation of posterior cortical areas belonging to the default mode network (DMN, was increased in RRMS, but not in SPMS, with respect to HC. The amount of activation in the contralateral sensorimotor cortex was significantly correlated with that of deactivation in the DMN in HC and RRMS, but not in SPMS. Both increased activation and decreased deactivation patterns correlated with LV. CONCLUSION: In RRMS patients, increased cortical activation was associated with increased deactivation of the posterior cortex suggesting a greater resting-state activity in the DMN, probably aimed at facilitating sensorimotor circuit engagement during task performance. In SPMS the coupling between increased sensorimotor activation/increased DMN deactivation was not observed suggesting disorganization between anticorrelated functional networks as a consequence of a higher

  10. A structural equation model relating impaired sensorimotor function, fear of falling and gait patterns in older people.

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    Menz, Hylton B; Lord, Stephen R; Fitzpatrick, Richard C

    2007-02-01

    Many falls in older people occur while walking, however the mechanisms responsible for gait instability are poorly understood. Therefore, the aim of this study was to develop a plausible model describing the relationships between impaired sensorimotor function, fear of falling and gait patterns in older people. Temporo-spatial gait parameters and acceleration patterns of the head and pelvis were obtained from 100 community-dwelling older people aged between 75 and 93 years while walking on an irregular walkway. A theoretical model was developed to explain the relationships between these variables, assuming that head stability is a primary output of the postural control system when walking. This model was then tested using structural equation modeling, a statistical technique which enables the testing of a set of regression equations simultaneously. The structural equation model indicated that: (i) reduced step length has a significant direct and indirect association with reduced head stability; (ii) impaired sensorimotor function is significantly associated with reduced head stability, but this effect is largely indirect, mediated by reduced step length, and; (iii) fear of falling is significantly associated with reduced step length, but has little direct influence on head stability. These findings provide useful insights into the possible mechanisms underlying gait characteristics and risk of falling in older people. Particularly important is the indication that fear-related step length shortening may be maladaptive.

  11. Temporal Processing Instability with Millisecond Accuracy Is a Cardinal Feature of Sensorimotor Impairments in Autism Spectrum Disorder: Analysis Using the Synchronized Finger-Tapping Task

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    Morimoto, Chie; Hida, Eisuke; Shima, Keisuke; Okamura, Hitoshi

    2018-01-01

    To identify a specific sensorimotor impairment feature of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we focused on temporal processing with millisecond accuracy. A synchronized finger-tapping task was used to characterize temporal processing in individuals with ASD as compared to typically developing (TD) individuals. We found that individuals with ASD…

  12. Increased low-frequency oscillation amplitude of sensorimotor cortex associated with the severity of structural impairment in cervical myelopathy.

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    Fuqing Zhou

    Full Text Available Decreases in metabolites and increased motor-related, but decreased sensory-related activation of the sensorimotor cortex (SMC have been observed in patients with cervical myelopathy (CM using advanced MRI techniques. However, the nature of intrinsic neuronal activity in the SMC, and the relationship between cerebral function and structural damage of the spinal cord in patients with CM are not fully understood. The purpose of this study was to assess intrinsic neuronal activity by calculating the regional amplitude of low frequency fluctuations (ALFF using resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI, and correlations with clinical and imaging indices. Nineteen patients and 19 age- and sex-matched healthy subjects underwent rs-fMRI scans. ALFF measurements were performed in the SMC, a key brain network likely to impaired or reorganized patients with CM. Compared with healthy subjects, increased amplitude of cortical low-frequency oscillations (LFO was observed in the right precentral gyrus, right postcentral gyrus, and left supplementary motor area. Furthermore, increased z-ALFF values in the right precentral gyrus and right postcentral gyrus correlated with decreased fractional anisotropy values at the C2 level, which indicated increased intrinsic neuronal activity in the SMC corresponding to the structural impairment in the spinal cord of patients with CM. These findings suggest a complex and diverging relationship of cortical functional reorganization and distal spinal anatomical compression in patients with CM and, thus, add important information in understanding how spinal cord integrity may be a factor in the intrinsic covariance of spontaneous low-frequency fluctuations of BOLD signals involved in cortical plasticity.

  13. 2015 Sensorimotor Risk Standing Review Panel Evidence and Status Review For: the Risk of Impaired Control of Spacecraft/Associated Systems and Decreased Mobility Due to Vestibular/Sensorimotor Alterations Associated with Spaceflight

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    Steinberg, Susan

    2015-01-01

    The 2015 Sensorimotor Risk Standing Review Panel (from here on referred to as the SRP) participated in a WebEx/teleconference with members of the Human Health Countermeasures (HHC) Element, representatives from the Human Research Program (HRP), NASA Headquarters, and NASA Research and Education Support Services (NRESS) on December 17, 2015 (list of participants is in Section VI of this report). The SRP reviewed the new Evidence Report for the Risk of Impaired Control of Spacecraft/Associated Systems and Decreased Mobility Due to Vestibular/Sensorimotor Alterations Associated with Spaceflight (from here on referred to as the 2015 Sensorimotor Evidence Report), and also received a status review of the Risk. The opening section of the 2015 Sensorimotor Evidence Report provides written descriptions of various incidents that have occurred during space missions. In most of these incidents, the main underlying contributing factors are not easy to identify unambiguously. For example, in section 1.9, a number of falls occurred while astronauts were walking on the moon. It is not clear to the SRP, however, why they fell. It is only possible to extrapolate from likely specific psychophysical or physiological abnormalities, but how these abnormalities were determined, and how they were directly responsible for the falls is unclear to the SRP. Section 2.1.2 on proprioception is very interesting, but the functional significance of the abnormalities detected is not clear. The SRP sees this as a problem throughout the report: a mapping between the component abnormalities identified and the holistic behaviors that are most relevant, for example, controlling the vehicle, and locomotion during egress, is generally lacking. The SRP thinks the cognitive section is too strongly focused on vestibular functioning. The SRP questions the notion that the main cognitive effects are mainly attributable to reversible vestibular changes induced by spaceflight. The SRP thinks that there can also

  14. Normalization of sensorimotor integration by repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation in cervical dystonia

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    Zittel, S.; Helmich, R.C.G.; Demiralay, C.; Munchau, A.; Baumer, T.

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies indicated that sensorimotor integration and plasticity of the sensorimotor system are impaired in dystonia patients. We investigated motor evoked potential amplitudes and short latency afferent inhibition to examine corticospinal excitability and cortical sensorimotor integration,

  15. Risk of Impaired Control of Spacecraft/Associated Systems and Decreased Mobility Due to Vestibular/Sensorimotor Alterations Associated with Space flight

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    Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Reschke, Millard F.; Clement, Gilles R.; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P.; Taylor, Laura C..

    2015-01-01

    Control of vehicles and other complex systems is a high-level integrative function of the central nervous system (CNS). It requires well-functioning subsystem performance, including good visual acuity, eye-hand coordination, spatial and geographic orientation perception, and cognitive function. Evidence from space flight research demonstrates that the function of each of these subsystems is altered by removing gravity, a fundamental orientation reference, which is sensed by vestibular, proprioceptive, and haptic receptors and used by the CNS for spatial orientation, posture, navigation, and coordination of movements. The available evidence also shows that the degree of alteration of each subsystem depends on a number of crew- and mission-related factors. There is only limited operational evidence that these alterations cause functional impacts on mission-critical vehicle (or complex system) control capabilities. Furthermore, while much of the operational performance data collected during space flight has not been available for independent analysis, those that have been reviewed are somewhat equivocal owing to uncontrolled (and/or unmeasured) environmental and/or engineering factors. Whether this can be improved by further analysis of previously inaccessible operational data or by development of new operational research protocols remains to be seen. The true operational risks will be estimable only after we have filled the knowledge gaps and when we can accurately assess integrated performance in off-nominal operational settings (Paloski et al. 2008). Thus, our current understanding of the Risk of Impaired Control of Spacecraft/Associated Systems and Decreased Mobility Due to Vestibular/Sensorimotor Alterations Associated with Space flight is limited primarily to extrapolation of scientific research findings, and, since there are limited ground-based analogs of the sensorimotor and vestibular changes associated with space flight, observation of their functional

  16. Finger tapping and pre-attentive sensorimotor timing in adults with ADHD.

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    Hove, Michael J; Gravel, Nickolas; Spencer, Rebecca M C; Valera, Eve M

    2017-12-01

    Sensorimotor timing deficits are considered central to attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the tasks establishing timing impairments often involve interconnected processes, including low-level sensorimotor timing and higher level executive processes such as attention. Thus, the source of timing deficits in ADHD remains unclear. Low-level sensorimotor timing can be isolated from higher level processes in a finger-tapping task that examines the motor response to unexpected shifts of metronome onsets. In this study, adults with ADHD and ADHD-like symptoms (n = 25) and controls (n = 26) performed two finger-tapping tasks. The first assessed tapping variability in a standard tapping task (metronome-paced and unpaced). In the other task, participants tapped along with a metronome that contained unexpected shifts (±15, 50 ms); the timing adjustment on the tap following the shift captures pre-attentive sensorimotor timing (i.e., phase correction) and thus should be free of potential higher order confounds (e.g., attention). In the standard tapping task, as expected, the ADHD group had higher timing variability in both paced and unpaced tappings. However, in the pre-attentive task, performance did not differ between the ADHD and control groups. Together, results suggest that low-level sensorimotor timing and phase correction are largely preserved in ADHD and that some timing impairments observed in ADHD may stem from higher level factors (such as sustained attention).

  17. Picture Naming in Typically Developing and Language-Impaired Children: The Role of Sustained Attention

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    Jongman, Suzanne R.; Roelofs, Ardi; Scheper, Annette R.; Meyer, Antje S.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Children with specific language impairment (SLI) have problems not only with language performance but also with sustained attention, which is the ability to maintain alertness over an extended period of time. Although there is consensus that this ability is impaired with respect to processing stimuli in the auditory perceptual…

  18. The Computational Sensorimotor Systems Laboratory

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    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Computational Sensorimotor Systems Lab focuses on the exploration, analysis, modeling and implementation of biological sensorimotor systems for both scientific...

  19. Where's the impairment: an examination of factors that impact sustained attention following a stressor.

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    Banks, Jonathan B; Tartar, Jaime L; Welhaf, Matthew S

    2014-01-01

    The impact of stress on cognitive functioning has been examined across multiple domains. However, few studies investigate both physical and psychological factors that impact cognitive performance. The current study examined the impact of a physical and psychosocial stressor on sustained attention and identified factors related to sustained attention, including cortisol, salivary alpha amylase (sAA) and mind wandering. A total of 53 participants completed either the socially evaluated cold pressor task or a control task followed by the sustained attention to response task with mind wandering measures. Participants also provided saliva samples following the attention task. Results indicate the stressor task did not impact mind wandering or sustained attention but increased cortisol and sAA. Mind wandering was negatively related to sustained attention and mediated the relationship between cortisol and sustained attention. The findings highlight the importance of examining multiple sources of stress-related cognitive impairments.

  20. Sustained Selective Attention Skills of Preschool Children with Specific Language Impairment: Evidence for Separate Attentional Capacities

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    Spaulding, Tammie J.; Plante, Elena; Vance, Rebecca

    2008-01-01

    Purpose: The present study was designed to investigate the performance of preschool children with specific language impairment (SLI) and their typically developing (TD) peers on sustained selective attention tasks. Method: This study included 23 children diagnosed with SLI and 23 TD children matched for age, gender, and maternal education level.…

  1. Social Sensorimotor Contingencies

    OpenAIRE

    Bütepage, Judith

    2016-01-01

    As the field of robotics advances, more robots are employed in our everyday environment. Thus, the implementation of robots that can actively engage in physical collaboration and naturally interact with humans is of high importance. In order to achieve this goal, it is necessary to study human interaction and social cognition and how these aspects can be implemented in robotic agents. The theory of social sensorimotor contingencies hypothesises that many aspects of human-human interaction de...

  2. Contemporary sensorimotor theory

    CERN Document Server

    Martin, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    This book analyzes the philosophical foundations of sensorimotor theory and discusses the most recent applications of sensorimotor theory to human computer interaction, child’s play, virtual reality, robotics, and linguistics. Why does a circle look curved and not angular? Why does red not sound like a bell? Why, as I interact with the world, is there something it is like to be me? An analytic philosopher might suggest: ``if we ponder the concept of circle we find that it is the essence of a circle to be round’’. However, where does this definition come from? Was it set in stone by the Gods, in other words by divine arbiters of circleness, redness and consciousness? Particularly, with regard to visual consciousness, a first attempt to explain why our conscious experience of the world appears as it does has been attributed to Kevin O’Regan and Alva Noe, who published their sensorimotor account of vision and visual consciousness in 2001. Starting with a chapter by Kevin O’Regan, Contemporary Sensorimo...

  3. Impaired sustained attention and altered reactivity to errors in an animal model of prenatal cocaine exposure.

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    Gendle, Mathew H; Strawderman, Myla S; Mactutus, Charles F; Booze, Rosemarie M; Levitsky, David A; Strupp, Barbara J

    2003-12-30

    Although correlations have been reported between maternal cocaine use and impaired attention in exposed children, interpretation of these findings is complicated by the many risk factors that differentiate cocaine-exposed children from SES-matched controls. For this reason, the present dose-response study (0, 0.5, 1.0, or 3.0 mg/kg cocaine HCl) was designed to explore the effect of prenatal cocaine exposure on visual attention in a rodent model, using an intravenous injection protocol that closely mimics the pharmacokinetic profile and physiological effects of human recreational cocaine use. In adulthood, animals were tested on an attention task in which the duration, location, and onset time of a brief visual cue varied randomly between trials. The 3.0 mg/kg exposed males committed significantly more omission errors than control males during the final 1/3 of each testing session, specifically on trials that followed an error, which implicates impaired sustained attention and increased reactivity to committing an error. During the final 1/3 of each testing session, the 0.5 and 1.0 mg/kg exposed females took longer to enter the testing alcove at trial onset, and failed to enter the alcove more frequently than control females. Because these effects were not seen in other tasks of similar duration and reinforcement density, these findings suggest an impairment of sustained attention. This inference is supported by the finding that the increase in omission errors in the final block of trials in each daily session (relative to earlier in the session) was significantly greater for the 1.0 mg/kg females than for controls, a trend also seen for the 0.5 mg/kg group. Unlike the cocaine-exposed males, who remain engaged in the task when attention is waning, the cocaine-exposed females appear to opt for another strategy; namely, refusing to participate when their ability to sustain attention is surpassed.

  4. Language Proficiency and Sustained Attention in Monolingual and Bilingual Children with and without Language Impairment

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    Tessel Boerma

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: The language profiles of children with language impairment (LI and bilingual children can show partial, and possibly temporary, overlap. The current study examined the persistence of this overlap over time. Furthermore, we aimed to better understand why the language profiles of these two groups show resemblance, testing the hypothesis that the language difficulties of children with LI reflect a weakened ability to maintain attention to the stream of linguistic information. Consequent incomplete processing of language input may lead to delays that are similar to those originating from reductions in input frequency.Methods: Monolingual and bilingual children with and without LI (N = 128, aged 5–8 years old, participated in this study. Dutch receptive vocabulary and grammatical morphology were assessed at three waves. In addition, auditory and visual sustained attention were tested at wave 1. Mediation analyses were performed to examine relationships between LI, sustained attention, and language skills.Results: Children with LI and bilingual children were outperformed by their typically developing (TD and monolingual peers, respectively, on vocabulary and morphology at all three waves. The vocabulary difference between monolinguals and bilinguals decreased over time. In addition, children with LI had weaker auditory and visual sustained attention skills relative to TD children, while no differences between monolinguals and bilinguals emerged. Auditory sustained attention mediated the effect of LI on vocabulary and morphology in both the monolingual and bilingual groups of children. Visual sustained attention only acted as a mediator in the bilingual group.Conclusion: The findings from the present study indicate that the overlap between the language profiles of children with LI and bilingual children is particularly large for vocabulary in early (preschool years and reduces over time. Results furthermore suggest that the overlap may be

  5. Augmented Reality: Sustaining Autonomous Way-Finding in the Community for Older Persons with Cognitive Impairment.

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    Sejunaite, K; Lanza, C; Ganders, S; Iljaitsch, A; Riepe, M W

    2017-01-01

    Impairment of autonomous way-finding subsequent to a multitude of neurodegenerative and other diseases impedes independence of older persons and their everyday activities. It was the goal to use augmented reality to aid autonomous way-finding in a community setting. A spatial map and directional information were shown via head-up display to guide patients from the start zone on the hospital campus to a bakery in the nearby community. Hospital campus and nearby community. Patients with mild cognitive impairment (age 63 to 89). A head-up display was used to help patients find their way. Time needed to reach goal and number of assists needed. With use of augmented reality device, patients preceded along the correct path in 113 out of 120 intersections. Intermittent reassurance was needed for most patients. Patients affirmed willingness to use such an augmented reality device in everyday life if needed or even pay for it. Augmented reality guided navigation is a promising means to sustain autonomous way-finding as a prerequisite for autonomy of older persons in everyday activities. Thus, this study lays ground for a field trial in the community using assistive technology for older persons with cognitive impairment.

  6. Visual memory and sustained attention impairment in youths with autism spectrum disorders.

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    Chien, Y-L; Gau, S S-F; Shang, C-Y; Chiu, Y-N; Tsai, W-C; Wu, Y-Y

    2015-08-01

    An uneven neurocognitive profile is a hallmark of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Studies focusing on the visual memory performance in ASD have shown controversial results. We investigated visual memory and sustained attention in youths with ASD and typically developing (TD) youths. We recruited 143 pairs of youths with ASD (males 93.7%; mean age 13.1, s.d. 3.5 years) and age- and sex-matched TD youths. The ASD group consisted of 67 youths with autistic disorder (autism) and 76 with Asperger's disorder (AS) based on the DSM-IV criteria. They were assessed using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery involving the visual memory [spatial recognition memory (SRM), delayed matching to sample (DMS), paired associates learning (PAL)] and sustained attention (rapid visual information processing; RVP). Youths with ASD performed significantly worse than TD youths on most of the tasks; the significance disappeared in the superior intelligence quotient (IQ) subgroup. The response latency on the tasks did not differ between the ASD and TD groups. Age had significant main effects on SRM, DMS, RVP and part of PAL tasks and had an interaction with diagnosis in DMS and RVP performance. There was no significant difference between autism and AS on visual tasks. Our findings implied that youths with ASD had a wide range of visual memory and sustained attention impairment that was moderated by age and IQ, which supports temporal and frontal lobe dysfunction in ASD. The lack of difference between autism and AS implies that visual memory and sustained attention cannot distinguish these two ASD subtypes, which supports DSM-5 ASD criteria.

  7. Decoding intention at sensorimotor timescales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathew Salvaris

    Full Text Available The ability to decode an individual's intentions in real time has long been a 'holy grail' of research on human volition. For example, a reliable method could be used to improve scientific study of voluntary action by allowing external probe stimuli to be delivered at different moments during development of intention and action. Several Brain Computer Interface applications have used motor imagery of repetitive actions to achieve this goal. These systems are relatively successful, but only if the intention is sustained over a period of several seconds; much longer than the timescales identified in psychophysiological studies for normal preparation for voluntary action. We have used a combination of sensorimotor rhythms and motor imagery training to decode intentions in a single-trial cued-response paradigm similar to those used in human and non-human primate motor control research. Decoding accuracy of over 0.83 was achieved with twelve participants. With this approach, we could decode intentions to move the left or right hand at sub-second timescales, both for instructed choices instructed by an external stimulus and for free choices generated intentionally by the participant. The implications for volition are considered.

  8. Loss of inhibition in sensorimotor networks in focal hand dystonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cecile Gallea

    2018-01-01

    Interpretation: Impairments of GABAergic neurotransmission in the cerebellum and the sensorimotor cortical areas could explain different aspects of loss of inhibitory control in FHD, the former being involved in maladaptive plasticity, the latter in surround inhibition. Reorganization of the inferior prefrontal cortices, part of the associative network, might be compensatory for the loss of inhibitory control in sensorimotor circuits. These findings suggest that cerebellar and cerebral GABAergic abnormalities could play a role in the functional imbalance of striato-cerebello-cortical loops in dystonia.

  9. Circuit mechanisms of sensorimotor learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makino, Hiroshi; Hwang, Eun Jung; Hedrick, Nathan G.; Komiyama, Takaki

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY The relationship between the brain and the environment is flexible, forming the foundation for our ability to learn. Here we review the current state of our understanding of the modifications in the sensorimotor pathway related to sensorimotor learning. We divide the process in three hierarchical levels with distinct goals: 1) sensory perceptual learning, 2) sensorimotor associative learning, and 3) motor skill learning. Perceptual learning optimizes the representations of important sensory stimuli. Associative learning and the initial phase of motor skill learning are ensured by feedback-based mechanisms that permit trial-and-error learning. The later phase of motor skill learning may primarily involve feedback-independent mechanisms operating under the classic Hebbian rule. With these changes under distinct constraints and mechanisms, sensorimotor learning establishes dedicated circuitry for the reproduction of stereotyped neural activity patterns and behavior. PMID:27883902

  10. Single-Dose pharmacokinetics of sustained-release fampridine (Fampridine-SR) in healthy volunteers and adults with renal impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, William; Swan, Suzanne; Marbury, Thomas; Henney, Herbert

    2010-02-01

    Fampridine-SR is a sustained-release formulation of fampridine (4-aminopyridine), a potassium channel blocker demonstrated to improve walking ability in patients with multiple sclerosis. This study evaluated the pharmacokinetics of fampridine and its metabolites after administration of fampridine-SR 10 mg in healthy volunteers and in subjects with mild, moderate, or severe renal impairment (5 per group). Analysis of variance was used to calculate 90% confidence intervals (CIs) for the ratios (impaired/healthy) of least squares mean in maximum plasma concentration (C(max)) and area under the plasma concentration-time curve (AUC). Clearance was primarily through urinary excretion. In renally impaired subjects, fampridine plasma concentrations were consistently higher than in healthy individuals: ratios for C(max) ranged from 166.5% to 199.9% for mild and severe renal impairment, respectively. AUC(0-infinity) ratios ranged from 175.3% to 398.7%, respectively, for mild and severe renal impairment. Mean terminal disposition half-life was 6.4 hours in healthy individuals, compared with 7.4, 8.1, and 14.3 hours in patients with mild, moderate, and severe renal impairment, respectively. Regression analysis confirmed the significant relationship between creatinine clearance and extent of exposure as quantified by AUC for fampridine and its metabolites, suggesting cautious use in patients with mild renal impairment and avoidance in cases of moderate or severe renal impairment.

  11. Sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Mei, Ying; Wei, Li

    2016-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2015 publications on the focus of Sustainability. It is divided into the following sections : • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management.

  12. Sensorimotor integration in chronic stroke: Baseline differences and response to sensory training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Katlyn E; Neva, Jason L; Feldman, Samantha J; Staines, W Richard; Boyd, Lara A

    2018-01-01

    The integration of somatosensory information from the environment into the motor cortex to inform movement is essential for motor function. As motor deficits commonly persist into the chronic phase of stroke recovery, it is important to understand potential contributing factors to these deficits, as well as their relationship with motor function. To date the impact of chronic stroke on sensorimotor integration has not been thoroughly investigated. The current study aimed to comprehensively examine the influence of chronic stroke on sensorimotor integration, and determine whether sensorimotor integration can be modified with an intervention. Further, it determined the relationship between neurophysiological measures of sensorimotor integration and motor deficits post-stroke. Fourteen individuals with chronic stroke and twelve older healthy controls participated. Motor impairment and function were quantified in individuals with chronic stroke. Baseline neurophysiology was assessed using nerve-based measures (short- and long-latency afferent inhibition, afferent facilitation) and vibration-based measures of sensorimotor integration, which paired vibration with single and paired-pulse TMS techniques. Neurophysiological assessment was performed before and after a vibration-based sensory training paradigm to assess changes within these circuits. Vibration-based, but not nerve-based measures of sensorimotor integration were different in individuals with chronic stroke, as compared to older healthy controls, suggesting that stroke differentially impacts integration of specific types of somatosensory information. Sensorimotor integration was behaviourally relevant in that it related to both motor function and impairment post-stroke. Finally, sensory training modulated sensorimotor integration in individuals with chronic stroke and controls. Sensorimotor integration is differentially impacted by chronic stroke based on the type of afferent feedback. However, both nerve

  13. Countermeasures to Enhance Sensorimotor Adaptability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Peters, B. T.; Mulavara, A. P.; Brady, R. A.; Batson, C. C.; Miller, C. A.; Cohen, H. S.

    2011-01-01

    During exploration-class missions, sensorimotor disturbances may lead to disruption in the ability to ambulate and perform functional tasks during the initial introduction to a novel gravitational environment following a landing on a planetary surface. The goal of our current project is to develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program to facilitate rapid adaptation to novel gravitational environments. We have developed a unique training system comprised of a treadmill placed on a motion-base facing a virtual visual scene that provides an unstable walking surface combined with incongruent visual flow designed to enhance sensorimotor adaptability. We have conducted a series of studies that have shown: Training using a combination of modified visual flow and support surface motion during treadmill walking enhances locomotor adaptability to a novel sensorimotor environment. Trained individuals become more proficient at performing multiple competing tasks while walking during adaptation to novel discordant sensorimotor conditions. Trained subjects can retain their increased level of adaptability over a six months period. SA training is effective in producing increased adaptability in a more complex over-ground ambulatory task on an obstacle course. This confirms that for a complex task like walking, treadmill training contains enough of the critical features of overground walking to be an effective training modality. The structure of individual training sessions can be optimized to promote fast/strategic motor learning. Training sessions that each contain short-duration exposures to multiple perturbation stimuli allows subjects to acquire a greater ability to rapidly reorganize appropriate response strategies when encountering a novel sensory environment. Individual sensory biases (i.e. increased visual dependency) can predict adaptive responses to novel sensory environments suggesting that customized training prescriptions can be developed to enhance

  14. Principles of brain plasticity in improving sensorimotor function of the knee and leg in healthy subjects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ageberg, Eva; Bjorkman, Anders; Rosen, Birgitta

    2009-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Principles of brain plasticity are used in the treatment of patients with functional limitations to improve sensorimotor function. Training is included in the treatment of knee injury to improve both patient-reported function and sensorimotor function. However, impairment...... in sensorimotor function often persists despite training. Therefore, it was suggested that training programs need to be more effective to improve sensorimotor function after knee injury. The aim of the current study was to investigate if principles of brain plasticity that have been successfully used on the hand...... age 26 years, range 19-34, 50% women) were randomized to temporary local cutaneous application of anesthetic (EMLA) (n=14) or placebo cream (n=14). Fifty grams of EMLA, or placebo, was applied on the leg 10 cm above and 10 cm below the center of patella, leaving the area around the knee without cream...

  15. Signaling equilibria in sensorimotor interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leibfried, Felix; Grau-Moya, Jordi; Braun, Daniel A

    2015-08-01

    Although complex forms of communication like human language are often assumed to have evolved out of more simple forms of sensorimotor signaling, less attention has been devoted to investigate the latter. Here, we study communicative sensorimotor behavior of humans in a two-person joint motor task where each player controls one dimension of a planar motion. We designed this joint task as a game where one player (the sender) possesses private information about a hidden target the other player (the receiver) wants to know about, and where the sender's actions are costly signals that influence the receiver's control strategy. We developed a game-theoretic model within the framework of signaling games to investigate whether subjects' behavior could be adequately described by the corresponding equilibrium solutions. The model predicts both separating and pooling equilibria, in which signaling does and does not occur respectively. We observed both kinds of equilibria in subjects and found that, in line with model predictions, the propensity of signaling decreased with increasing signaling costs and decreasing uncertainty on the part of the receiver. Our study demonstrates that signaling games, which have previously been applied to economic decision-making and animal communication, provide a framework for human signaling behavior arising during sensorimotor interactions in continuous and dynamic environments. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Sensorimotor influences on speech perception in infancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruderer, Alison G; Danielson, D Kyle; Kandhadai, Padmapriya; Werker, Janet F

    2015-11-03

    The influence of speech production on speech perception is well established in adults. However, because adults have a long history of both perceiving and producing speech, the extent to which the perception-production linkage is due to experience is unknown. We addressed this issue by asking whether articulatory configurations can influence infants' speech perception performance. To eliminate influences from specific linguistic experience, we studied preverbal, 6-mo-old infants and tested the discrimination of a nonnative, and hence never-before-experienced, speech sound distinction. In three experimental studies, we used teething toys to control the position and movement of the tongue tip while the infants listened to the speech sounds. Using ultrasound imaging technology, we verified that the teething toys consistently and effectively constrained the movement and positioning of infants' tongues. With a looking-time procedure, we found that temporarily restraining infants' articulators impeded their discrimination of a nonnative consonant contrast but only when the relevant articulator was selectively restrained to prevent the movements associated with producing those sounds. Our results provide striking evidence that even before infants speak their first words and without specific listening experience, sensorimotor information from the articulators influences speech perception. These results transform theories of speech perception by suggesting that even at the initial stages of development, oral-motor movements influence speech sound discrimination. Moreover, an experimentally induced "impairment" in articulator movement can compromise speech perception performance, raising the question of whether long-term oral-motor impairments may impact perceptual development.

  17. Extended Neural Metastability in an Embodied Model of Sensorimotor Coupling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Aguilera

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The hypothesis that brain organization is based on mechanisms of metastable synchronization in neural assemblies has been popularized during the last decades of neuroscientific research. Nevertheless, the role of body and environment for understanding the functioning of metastable assemblies is frequently dismissed. The main goal of this paper is to investigate the contribution of sensorimotor coupling to neural and behavioural metastability using a minimal computational model of plastic neural ensembles embedded in a robotic agent in a behavioural preference task. Our hypothesis is that, under some conditions, the metastability of the system is not restricted to the brain but extends to the system composed by the interaction of brain, body and environment. We test this idea, comparing an agent in continuous interaction with its environment in a task demanding behavioural flexibility with an equivalent model from the point of view of 'internalist neuroscience'. A statistical characterization of our model and tools from information theory allows us to show how (1 the bidirectional coupling between agent and environment brings the system closer to a regime of criticality and triggers the emergence of additional metastable states which are not found in the brain in isolation but extended to the whole system of sensorimotor interaction, (2 the synaptic plasticity of the agent is fundamental to sustain open structures in the neural controller of the agent flexibly engaging and disengaging different behavioural patterns that sustain sensorimotor metastable states, and (3 these extended metastable states emerge when the agent generates an asymmetrical circular loop of causal interaction with its environment, in which the agent responds to variability of the environment at fast timescales while acting over the environment at slow timescales, suggesting the constitution of the agent as an autonomous entity actively modulating its sensorimotor coupling

  18. Extended Neural Metastability in an Embodied Model of Sensorimotor Coupling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguilera, Miguel; Bedia, Manuel G; Barandiaran, Xabier E

    2016-01-01

    The hypothesis that brain organization is based on mechanisms of metastable synchronization in neural assemblies has been popularized during the last decades of neuroscientific research. Nevertheless, the role of body and environment for understanding the functioning of metastable assemblies is frequently dismissed. The main goal of this paper is to investigate the contribution of sensorimotor coupling to neural and behavioral metastability using a minimal computational model of plastic neural ensembles embedded in a robotic agent in a behavioral preference task. Our hypothesis is that, under some conditions, the metastability of the system is not restricted to the brain but extends to the system composed by the interaction of brain, body and environment. We test this idea, comparing an agent in continuous interaction with its environment in a task demanding behavioral flexibility with an equivalent model from the point of view of "internalist neuroscience." A statistical characterization of our model and tools from information theory allow us to show how (1) the bidirectional coupling between agent and environment brings the system closer to a regime of criticality and triggers the emergence of additional metastable states which are not found in the brain in isolation but extended to the whole system of sensorimotor interaction, (2) the synaptic plasticity of the agent is fundamental to sustain open structures in the neural controller of the agent flexibly engaging and disengaging different behavioral patterns that sustain sensorimotor metastable states, and (3) these extended metastable states emerge when the agent generates an asymmetrical circular loop of causal interaction with its environment, in which the agent responds to variability of the environment at fast timescales while acting over the environment at slow timescales, suggesting the constitution of the agent as an autonomous entity actively modulating its sensorimotor coupling with the world. We

  19. Augmentation of Sensorimotor Adaptability Using Stochastic Resonance Technologies

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Astronauts experience sensorimotor dysfunction during adaption to g-transitions that occur when entering and exiting microgravity. These sensorimotor disturbances...

  20. Fetal Origin of Sensorimotor Behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaqueline Fagard

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this article is to track the fetal origin of infants’ sensorimotor behavior. We consider development as the self-organizing emergence of complex forms from spontaneously generated activity, governed by the innate capacity to detect and memorize the consequences of spontaneous activity (contingencies, and constrained by the sensory and motor maturation of the body. In support of this view, we show how observations on fetuses and also several fetal experiments suggest that the fetus’s first motor activity allows it to feel the space around it and to feel its body and the consequences of its movements on its body. This primitive motor babbling gives way progressively to sensorimotor behavior which already possesses most of the characteristics of infants’ later behavior: repetition of actions leading to sensations, intentionality, some motor control and oriented reactions to sensory stimulation. In this way the fetus can start developing a body map and acquiring knowledge of its limited physical and social environment.

  1. Acute Stress Dysregulates the LPP ERP Response to Emotional Pictures and Impairs Sustained Attention: Time-Sensitive Effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alomari, Rima A; Fernandez, Mercedes; Banks, Jonathan B; Acosta, Juliana; Tartar, Jaime L

    2015-05-20

    Stress can increase emotional vigilance at the cost of a decrease in attention towards non-emotional stimuli. However, the time-dependent effects of acute stress on emotion processing are uncertain. We tested the effects of acute stress on subsequent emotion processing up to 40 min following an acute stressor. Our measure of emotion processing was the late positive potential (LPP) component of the visual event-related potential (ERP), and our measure of non-emotional attention was the sustained attention to response task (SART). We also measured cortisol levels before and after the socially evaluated cold pressor test (SECPT) induction. We found that the effects of stress on the LPP ERP emotion measure were time sensitive. Specifically, the LPP ERP was only altered in the late time-point (30-40 min post-stress) when cortisol was at its highest level. Here, the LPP no longer discriminated between the emotional and non-emotional picture categories, most likely because neutral pictures were perceived as emotional. Moreover, compared to the non-stress condition, the stress-condition showed impaired performance on the SART. Our results support the idea that a limit in attention resources after an emotional stressor is associated with the brain incorrectly processing non-emotional stimuli as emotional and interferes with sustained attention.

  2. Unfazed or Dazed and Confused: Does Early Adolescent Marijuana Use Cause Sustained Impairments in Attention and Academic Functioning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardini, Dustin; White, Helene R; Xiong, Shuangyan; Bechtold, Jordan; Chung, Tammy; Loeber, Rolf; Hipwell, Alison

    2015-10-01

    There is some suggestion that heavy marijuana use during early adolescence (prior to age 17) may cause significant impairments in attention and academic functioning that remain despite sustained periods of abstinence. However, no longitudinal studies have examined whether both male and female adolescents who engage in low (less than once a month) to moderate (at least once a monthly) marijuana use experience increased problems with attention and academic performance, and whether these problems remain following sustained abstinence. The current study used within-individual change models to control for all potential pre-existing and time-stable confounds when examining this potential causal association in two gender-specific longitudinal samples assessed annually from ages 11 to 16 (Pittsburgh Youth Study N = 479; Pittsburgh Girls Study N = 2296). Analyses also controlled for the potential influence of several pertinent time-varying factors (e.g., other substance use, peer delinquency). Prior to controlling for time-varying confounds, analyses indicated that adolescents tended to experience an increase in parent-reported attention and academic problems, relative to their pre-onset levels, during years when they used marijuana. After controlling for several time-varying confounds, only the association between marijuana use and attention problems in the sample of girls remained statistically significant. There was no evidence indicating that adolescents who used marijuana experienced lingering attention and academic problems, relative to their pre-onset levels, after abstaining from use for at least a year. These results suggest that adolescents who engage in low to moderate marijuana use experience an increase in observable attention and academic problems, but these problems appear to be minimal and are eliminated following sustained abstinence.

  3. Impaired hypoxic ventilatory response following neonatal sustained and subsequent chronic intermittent hypoxia in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, C A; Ao, J; Di Fiore, J M; Martin, R J; MacFarlane, P M

    2013-06-15

    Neonatal chronic intermittent hypoxia (CIH) enhances the ventilatory sensitivity to acute hypoxia (acute hypoxic ventilatory response, HVR), whereas sustained hypoxia (SH) can have the opposite effect. Therefore, we investigated whether neonatal rats pre-treated with SH prior to CIH exhibit a modified HVR. Rat pups were exposed to CIH (5% O2/5min, 8h/day) between 6 and 15 days of postnatal age (P6-15) after pre-treatment with either normoxia or SH (11% O2; P1-5). Using whole-body plethysmography, the acute (5min, 10% O2) HVR at P16 (1 day post-CIH) was unchanged following CIH (67.9±6.7% above baseline) and also SH (58.8±10.5%) compared to age-matched normoxic rats (54.7±6.3%). In contrast, the HVR was attenuated (16.5±6.0%) in CIH exposed rats pre-treated with SH. These data suggest that while neonatal SH and CIH alone have little effect on the magnitude of the acute HVR, their combined effects impose a synergistic disturbance to postnatal development of the HVR. These data could provide important insight into the consequences of not maintaining adequate levels of oxygen saturation during the early neonatal period, especially in vulnerable preterm infants susceptible to frequent bouts of hypoxemic events (CIH) that are commonly associated with apnea of prematurity. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Impaired sustained attention and lapses are present in patients with mild obstructive sleep apnea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luz, Gabriela Pontes; Guimarães, Thais Moura; Weaver, Terri E; Nery, Luiz E; E Silva, Luciana Oliveira; Badke, Luciana; Coelho, Glaury; Millani-Carneiro, Aline; Tufik, Sergio; Bittencourt, Lia

    2016-05-01

    Severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) directly affects the quality of life, mood, and sustained attention of individuals, but it has not yet been established in the literature, if these changes also affect patients with mild OSA. The purpose of this study was to investigate such negative effects on the parameters described above. A controlled study was held at the Universidade Federal de Sao Paulo, Department of Psychobiology. Thirty-nine mild OSA patients and 25 controls were included. Volunteers could be of both genders with body mass index (BMI) ≤35 kg/m(2) and age between 18 and 65 years. Both groups were subjected to full-night polysomnography (PSG), the subjective assessment of mood (Beck Inventory of Anxiety and Depression), Functional Outcomes of Sleep Questionnaire (FOSQ), and the psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) five times during the day. We considered mild OSA patients those with apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) score between 5 and 15. The control group included subjects with AHI scores attention lapses compared with normal subjects.

  5. Sensorimotor gating deficits in multiple system atrophy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zoetmulder, Marielle; Biernat, Heidi Bryde; Nikolic, Miki

    2014-01-01

    Prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the auditory blink reflex is a measure of sensorimotor gating, which reflects an organism's ability to filter out irrelevant sensory information. PPI has never been studied in patients with multiple system atrophy (MSA), although sensorimotor deficits are frequently a...... associated with synucleinopathies. We investigated whether alterations in PPI were more pronounced in MSA compared with Parkinson's disease (PD), idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (iRBD) and healthy controls....

  6. Effect of sensorimotor training on balance in elderly patients with knee osteoarthritis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amal F. Ahmed

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Osteoarthritis (OA is a chronic disabling disease that generates many impairments of functional health status. Impairments of balance are recognized in patients with knee OA. This study investigated the short term effect of sensorimotor training on balance in elderly patients with knee OA, and whether these changes were associated with impairment of functional performance. In addition the possible independent predictors of impaired balance were determined. Forty female patients with knee OA were divided into two equal groups. The control group received a traditional exercise programme and the study group received sensorimotor training in addition to traditional exercises. Blind assessment was conducted at the beginning of the study and after 6 weeks of training to measure balance [in the form of overall stability index (OSI, medial/lateral stability index (MLSI, anterior/posterior stability index (APSI], perceived pain, proprioception acuity, knee extensor muscle torque, and functional disability. For the sensorimotor group, statistically significant improvements were recorded in all measured parameters, while the traditional exercise group recorded significant improvement only on measures of perceived pain, proprioception acuity, muscle torque, and functional disability, and non-significant changes on all balance measurements. Furthermore, the sensorimotor group produced significantly better improvement than the traditional group. The main predictor of balance was proprioception. The classic traditional exercise programme used in the management of knee OA is not enough for improving balance. Addition of sensorimotor training to the rehabilitation programme of these patients could produce more positive effects on balance and functional activity levels. The association between balance, proprioception and functional activity should be considered when treating knee OA.

  7. Sensorimotor performance in euthymic bipolar disorder: the MPraxis (PennCNP analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maila de C. Neves

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Sensorimotor deficits are an important phenomenological facet observed in patients with bipolar disorder (BD. However, there is little research on this topic. We hypothesize that the MPraxis test can be used to screen for motor impairments in BD aiming movements. Method: The MPraxis, which is a quick and easy-to-apply computerized test, measures sensorimotor control. During the test, the participant must move the computer mouse cursor over an ever-shrinking green box and click on it once. We predict that the MPraxis test is capable of detecting differences in sensorimotor performance between patients with BD and controls. We assessed 21 euthymic type I BD patients, without DSM-IV-TR Axis I comorbidity, and 21 healthy controls. Results and conclusions: Compared to the controls, the patients with BD presented a lower response time in their movements in all conditions. Our results showed sensorimotor deficits in BD and suggested that the MPraxis test can be used to screen for motor impairments in patients with euthymic BD.

  8. Developing Personalized Sensorimotor Adaptability Countermeasures for Spaceflight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulavara, A. P.; Seidler, R. D.; Peters, B.; Cohen, H. S.; Wood, S.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2016-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor disturbances during their initial exposure to microgravity and during the re-adaptation phase following a return to an Earth-gravitational environment. Interestingly, astronauts who return from spaceflight show substantial differences in their abilities to readapt to a gravitational environment. The ability to predict the manner and degree to which individual astronauts would be affected would improve the effectiveness of countermeasure training programs designed to enhance sensorimotor adaptability. In this paper we will be presenting results from our ground-based study that show how behavioral, brain imaging and genomic data may be used to predict individual differences in sensorimotor adaptability to novel sensorimotor environments. This approach will allow us to better design and implement sensorimotor adaptability training countermeasures against decrements in post-mission adaptive capability that are customized for each crewmember's sensory biases, adaptive capacity, brain structure, functional capacities, and genetic predispositions. The ability to customize adaptability training will allow more efficient use of crew time during training and will optimize training prescriptions for astronauts to ensure expected outcomes.

  9. Syntactic Structures as Descriptions of Sensorimotor Processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alistair Knott

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In this paper I propose a hypothesis linking elements of a model of theoretical syntax with neural mechanisms in the domain of sensorimotor processing. The syntactic framework I adopt to express this linking hypothesis is Chomsky’s Minimalism: I propose that the language-independent ’Logical Form’ (LF of a sentence reporting a concrete episode in the world can be interpreted as a detailed description of the sensorimotor processes involved in apprehending that episode. The hypothesis is motivated by a detailed study of one particular episode, in which an agent grasps a target object. There are striking similarities between the LF structure of transitive sentences describing this episode and the structure of the sensorimotor processes through which it is apprehended by an observer. The neural interpretation of Minimalist LF structure allows it to incorporate insights from empiricist accounts of syntax, relating to sentence processing and to the learning of syntactic constructions.

  10. Progress in sensorimotor rehabilitative physical therapy programs for stroke patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jia-Ching; Shaw, Fu-Zen

    2014-01-01

    Impaired motor and functional activity following stroke often has negative impacts on the patient, the family and society. The available rehabilitation programs for stroke patients are reviewed. Conventional rehabilitation strategies (Bobath, Brunnstrom, proprioception neuromuscular facilitation, motor relearning and function-based principles) are the mainstream tactics in clinical practices. Numerous advanced strategies for sensory-motor functional enhancement, including electrical stimulation, electromyographic biofeedback, constraint-induced movement therapy, robotics-aided systems, virtual reality, intermittent compression, partial body weight supported treadmill training and thermal stimulation, are being developed and incorporated into conventional rehabilitation programs. The concept of combining valuable rehabilitative procedures into “a training package”, based on the patient’s functional status during different recovery phases after stroke is proposed. Integrated sensorimotor rehabilitation programs with appropriate temporal arrangements might provide great functional benefits for stroke patients. PMID:25133141

  11. Forecasting Sensorimotor Adaptability from Baseline Inter-Trial Correlations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaton, K. H.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2016-01-01

    One of the greatest challenges for sensorimotor adaptation to the spaceflight environment is the large variability in symptoms, and corresponding functional impairments, from one crewmember to the next. This renders preflight training and countermeasure development difficult, as a "one-size-fits-all" approach is inappropriate. Therefore, it would be highly advantageous to know ahead of time which crewmembers might have more difficulty adjusting to the novel g-levels inherent to spaceflight. This information could guide individually customized countermeasures, which would enable more efficient use of crew time and provide better outcomes. The principal aim of this work is to look for baseline performance metrics that relate to locomotor adaptability. We propose a novel hypothesis that considers baseline inter-trial correlations, the trial-to-trial fluctuations ("noise") in motor performance, as a predictor of individual adaptive capabilities.

  12. Lamotrigine effects sensorimotor gating in WAG/Rij rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ipek Komsuoglu Celikyurt

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Prepulse inhibition (PPI is a measurable form of sensorimotor gating. Disruption of PPI reflects the impairment in the neural filtering process of mental functions that are related to the transformation of an external stimuli to a response. Impairment of PPI is reported in neuropsychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia, Huntington′s disease, Parkinson′s diseases, Tourette syndrome, obsessive compulsive disorder, and temporal lobe epilepsy with psychosis. Absence epilepsy is the most common type of primary generalized epilepsy. Lamotrigine is an antiepileptic drug that is preferred in absence epilepsy and acts by stabilizing the voltage-gated sodium channels. Aim: In this study, we have compared WAG-Rij rats (genetically absence epileptic rats with Wistar rats, in order to clarify if there is a deficient sensorimotor gating in absence epilepsy, and have examined the effects of lamotrigine (15, 30 mg/kg, i.p. on this phenomenon. Materials and Methods: Depletion in PPI percent value is accepted as a disruption in sensory-motor filtration function. The difference between the Wistar and WAG/Rij rats has been evaluated with the student t test and the effects of lamotrigine on the PPI percent have been evaluated by the analysis of variance (ANOVA post-hoc Dunnett′s test. Results: The PPI percent was low in the WAG/Rij rats compared to the controls (P<0.0001, t:9,612. Although the PPI percent value of the control rats was not influenced by lamotrigine, the PPI percent value of the WAG/Rij rats was raised by lamotrigine treatment (P<0.0001, F:861,24. Conclusions: As a result of our study, PPI was disrupted in the WAG/Rij rats and this disruption could be reversed by an antiepileptic lamotrigine.

  13. 听力障碍群体的保持性注意发展%A Study on the Sustained Attention Development of Hearing Impaired Population

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    程黎; 施建农; 蹇菊华; 张兴利

    2012-01-01

    为了研究听力障碍儿童到成人的保持性注意发展的变化,采用瑞文标准推理测验筛选出207名智力正常的听力障碍儿童和听力正常儿童及成人作为被试,以划消测验作为实验材料,记录被试的加工速度、击中率和虚报率.结果显示:听力障碍和听力正常被试的加工速度都随年龄的增长而加快;7~9岁组的听力障碍被试的击中率显著低于听力正常组,其他年龄组的听力障碍被试和正常被试的击中率没有显著差异;7~14岁的听力障碍被试的虚报率显著高于听力正常被试.听力障碍被试和听力正常被试在所有指标上的发展趋势都相似,前者只有在青少年期的专注程度不如听力正常被试,对非目标的抑制能力比较弱.同时也必须看到,听力障碍被试在注意保持的时间分布上更好,他们能更为持久地维持注意.%In the present study,cancellation test was used to explore sustained attention development of hearing impaired children and adults. 207 hearing impaired and hearing participants were selected by using Raven Progressive Matrices intelligence test. Results showed clear age-related increases in processing speed for both hearing impaired and hearing participants. The hit rate of the hearing impaired children was significantly lower than that of the hearing children among aged 7-9 group,while that difference among other aged group was not found. The false alert rate of the hearing impaired adolescents was significantly higher than that of the hearing adolescents among aged 7-14 group. We interpret these results and concluded that,both hearing impaired and hearing participants had the similar developmental trajectory of the sustained attention;The ability of children's sustained attention appeared to improve with age,and in adolescence it reached the peak;The hearing impaired participants had the comparable sustained attention skills to the matched hearing peers. Besides, the

  14. The Impairing Effect of Mental Fatigue on Visual Sustained Attention under Monotonous Multi-Object Visual Attention Task in Long Durations: An Event-Related Potential Based Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zizheng Guo

    Full Text Available The impairing effects of mental fatigue on visual sustained attention were assessed by event-related potentials (ERPs. Subjects performed a dual visual task, which includes a continuous tracking task (primary task and a random signal detection task (secondary task, for 63 minutes nonstop in order to elicit ERPs. In this period, the data such as subjective levels of mental fatigue, behavioral performance measures, and electroencephalograms were recorded for each subject. Comparing data from the first interval (0-25 min to that of the second, the following phenomena were observed: the subjective fatigue ratings increased with time, which indicates that performing the tasks leads to increase in mental fatigue levels; reaction times prolonged and accuracy rates decreased in the second interval, which indicates that subjects' sustained attention decreased.; In the ERP data, the P3 amplitudes elicited by the random signals decreased, while the P3 latencies increased in the second interval. These results suggest that mental fatigue can modulate the higher-level cognitive processes, in terms of less attentional resources allocated to the random stimuli, which leads to decreased speed in information evaluating and decision making against the stimuli. These findings provide new insights into the question that how mental fatigue affects visual sustained attention and, therefore, can help to design countermeasures to prevent accidents caused by low visual sustained attention.

  15. Effects of bilateral and unilateral locus coeruleus lesions on beam-walking recovery after subsequent unilateral sensorimotor cortex suction-ablation in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, L B

    1997-01-01

    The recovery of beam-walking ability following a unilateral sensorimotor cortex lesion in the rat is hypothesized to be noradrenergically-mediated. We carried out two experiments to further test this hypothesis. In the first experiment, bilateral 6-hydroxydopamine locus coeruleus (LC) lesions or sham LC lesions were made 2 weeks prior to a right sensorimotor cortex suction-ablation lesion or sham cortex lesion. In the second experiment, unilateral left or right LC lesions or sham LC lesions were made 2 weeks prior to a right sensorimotor cortex lesion or sham cortex lesion. Beam-walking recovery was measured over the 12 days following cortex lesioning in each experiment. Bilateral, unilateral left, and unilateral right LC lesions resulted in impaired recovery. These data provide additional support for the hypothesis that beam-walking recovery after sensorimotor cortex injury is, at least in part, noradrenergically mediated.

  16. Adults with sensorimotor disorders: Enhanced physiological and psychological development following specific sensorimotor training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mats eNiklasson

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study was to investigate, for the first time, if it is possible to integrate primary reflexes in adults with sensorimotor disorders through sensorimotor therapy. Participants consisted of 14 adults, 1 man and 13 women, with an average age of 35 years who completed a sensorimotor therapy program over three years. They were compared with a reference group of 100 youngsters spanning from 11 to 17 years. Procedures were the same for both youngsters and adults including regular visits to a therapist and training approximately 15 minutes each day at home throughout therapy. Assessments of sensorimotor abilities were made before and after the therapy. Results showed significant improvements on all measurements with regard to treatment for both age groups and the main picture indicated small differences between age groups. After therapy adults were better on balance and orientation tests while the youngsters performed better on sports related gross motor movements, processing of speech sounds and had acquired a better relation between visual skills and vestibular function. Conclusions were that motor problems do not disappear with age and that the same diagnostic instruments and treatment methods can be used for both children and adults with sensorimotor difficulties.

  17. Sensorimotor Learning: Neurocognitive Mechanisms and Individual Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seidler, R D; Carson, R G

    2017-07-13

    Here we provide an overview of findings and viewpoints on the mechanisms of sensorimotor learning presented at the 2016 Biomechanics and Neural Control of Movement (BANCOM) conference in Deer Creek, OH. This field has shown substantial growth in the past couple of decades. For example it is now well accepted that neural systems outside of primary motor pathways play a role in learning. Frontoparietal and anterior cingulate networks contribute to sensorimotor adaptation, reflecting strategic aspects of exploration and learning. Longer term training results in functional and morphological changes in primary motor and somatosensory cortices. Interestingly, re-engagement of strategic processes once a skill has become well learned may disrupt performance. Efforts to predict individual differences in learning rate have enhanced our understanding of the neural, behavioral, and genetic factors underlying skilled human performance. Access to genomic analyses has dramatically increased over the past several years. This has enhanced our understanding of cellular processes underlying the expression of human behavior, including involvement of various neurotransmitters, receptors, and enzymes. Surprisingly our field has been slow to adopt such approaches in studying neural control, although this work does require much larger sample sizes than are typically used to investigate skill learning. We advocate that individual differences approaches can lead to new insights into human sensorimotor performance. Moreover, a greater understanding of the factors underlying the wide range of performance capabilities seen across individuals can promote personalized medicine and refinement of rehabilitation strategies, which stand to be more effective than "one size fits all" treatments.

  18. Risk-sensitivity in Bayesian sensorimotor integration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Grau-Moya

    Full Text Available Information processing in the nervous system during sensorimotor tasks with inherent uncertainty has been shown to be consistent with Bayesian integration. Bayes optimal decision-makers are, however, risk-neutral in the sense that they weigh all possibilities based on prior expectation and sensory evidence when they choose the action with highest expected value. In contrast, risk-sensitive decision-makers are sensitive to model uncertainty and bias their decision-making processes when they do inference over unobserved variables. In particular, they allow deviations from their probabilistic model in cases where this model makes imprecise predictions. Here we test for risk-sensitivity in a sensorimotor integration task where subjects exhibit Bayesian information integration when they infer the position of a target from noisy sensory feedback. When introducing a cost associated with subjects' response, we found that subjects exhibited a characteristic bias towards low cost responses when their uncertainty was high. This result is in accordance with risk-sensitive decision-making processes that allow for deviations from Bayes optimal decision-making in the face of uncertainty. Our results suggest that both Bayesian integration and risk-sensitivity are important factors to understand sensorimotor integration in a quantitative fashion.

  19. Sustaining prospective memory functioning in amnestic mild cognitive impairment: A lifespan approach to the critical role of encoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Antonina; Altgassen, Mareike; Atchison, Lesley; de Mendonça, Alexandre; Ellis, Judi

    2018-04-16

    Prospective memory (PM), the ability to remember to perform future activities, is a fundamental requirement for independent living. PM tasks pervade our daily lives, and PM failures represent one of the most prominent memory concerns across the entire life span. This study aimed to address this issue by exploring the potential benefits of specific encoding strategies on memory for intentions across healthy adulthood and in the early stages of cognitive impairment. PM performance was explored through an experimental paradigm in 96 participants: 32 amnestic mild cognitively impaired patients aged 64-87 years (M = 6.75, SD = 5.88), 32 healthy older adults aged 62-84 years (M = 76.06, SD = 6.03), and 32 younger adults 18-22 years (M = 19.75, SD = 1.16). The potential benefit of the use of enactment (i.e., physically simulating the intended action) at encoding to support an autonomous performance despite neuronal degeneration was assessed. PM was consistently identified as a sensitive and specific indicator of cognitive impairment. Importantly, enacted encoding was consistently beneficial for PM performance of all the participants, but especially so in the case of healthy and cognitively impaired older adults. These positive results have unveiled the potential of this encoding technique to optimize attentional demands through an adaptive allocation of strategic resources across both healthy and cognitively impaired samples. Theoretical implications of this work are discussed as well as the considerable translational potential to improve social well-being. A better understanding of the strategies that can enhance PM offers the potential for cost-effective and widely applicable tools which may support independent living across the adult life span. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. Improving Sensorimotor Function Using Stochastic Vestibular Stimulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvan, R. C.; Clark, T. K.; Merfeld, D. M.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Oman, C. M.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor changes during spaceflight, particularly during G-transition phases. Post flight sensorimotor changes may include postural and gait instability, spatial disorientation, and visual performance decrements, all of which can degrade operational capabilities of the astronauts and endanger the crew. Crewmember safety would be improved if these detrimental effects of spaceflight could be mitigated by a sensorimotor countermeasure and even further if adaptation to baseline could be facilitated. The goal of this research is to investigate the potential use of stochastic vestibular stimulation (SVS) as a technology to improve sensorimotor function. We hypothesize that low levels of SVS will improve sensorimotor performance through stochastic resonance (SR). The SR phenomenon occurs when the response of a nonlinear system to a weak input signal is optimized by the application of a particular nonzero level of noise. Two studies have been initiated to investigate the beneficial effects and potential practical usage of SVS. In both studies, electrical vestibular stimulation is applied via electrodes on the mastoid processes using a constant current stimulator. The first study aims to determine the repeatability of the effect of vestibular stimulation on sensorimotor performance and perception in order to better understand the practical use of SVS. The beneficial effect of low levels of SVS on balance performance has been shown in the past. This research uses the same balance task repeated multiple times within a day and across days to study the repeatability of the stimulation effects. The balance test consists of 50 sec trials in which the subject stands with his or her feet together, arms crossed, and eyes closed on compliant foam. Varying levels of SVS, ranging from 0-700 micro A, are applied across different trials. The subject-specific optimal SVS level is that which results in the best balance performance as measured by inertial

  1. Sensorimotor rhythm neurofeedback as adjunct therapy for Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Philippens, Ingrid H C H M; Wubben, Jacqueline A; Vanwersch, Raymond A P; Estevao, Dave L; Tass, Peter A

    2017-08-01

    Neurofeedback may enhance compensatory brain mechanisms. EEG-based sensorimotor rhythm neurofeedback training was suggested to be beneficial in Parkinson's disease. In a placebo-controlled study in parkinsonian nonhuman primates we here show that sensorimotor rhythm neurofeedback training reduces MPTP-induced parkinsonian symptoms and both ON and OFF scores during classical L-DOPA treatment. Our findings encourage further development of sensorimotor rhythm neurofeedback training as adjunct therapy for Parkinson's disease which might help reduce L-DOPA-induced side effects.

  2. Specificity of verbal learning impairment and recovery in a marijuana-dependent male: the effects of sustained marijuana abstinence

    OpenAIRE

    Vadhan, Nehal P.; van Gorp, Wilfred G.; Levin, Frances R.

    2011-01-01

    We present the case of a young adult in treatment for marijuana dependence, with recurrent depression and a history of possible TBI, complaining of concentration, memory and initiation problems. Testing at treatment baseline revealed performance that was generally in the High Average range on measures of reaction time and attention, with a selective impairment in verbal learning (Borderline to Extremely Low range). Following 8 weeks of abstinence from marijuana, his verbal learning recovered ...

  3. Training Modalities to Increase Sensorimotor Adaptability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Peters, B. T.; Brady, R.; Audas, C.; Cohen, H. S.

    2009-01-01

    During the acute phase of adaptation to novel gravitational environments, sensorimotor disturbances have the potential to disrupt the ability of astronauts to perform required mission tasks. The goal of our current series of studies is develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program designed to facilitate recovery of functional capabilities when astronauts transition to different gravitational environments. The project has conducted a series of studies investigating the efficacy of treadmill training combined with a variety of sensory challenges (incongruent visual input, support surface instability) designed to increase adaptability. SA training using a treadmill combined with exposure to altered visual input was effective in producing increased adaptability in a more complex over-ground ambulatory task on an obstacle course. This confirms that for a complex task like walking, treadmill training contains enough of the critical features of overground walking to be an effective training modality. SA training can be optimized by using a periodized training schedule. Test sessions that each contain short-duration exposures to multiple perturbation stimuli allows subjects to acquire a greater ability to rapidly reorganize appropriate response strategies when encountering a novel sensory environment. Using a treadmill mounted on top of a six degree-of-freedom motion base platform we investigated locomotor training responses produced by subjects introduced to a dynamic walking surface combined with alterations in visual flow. Subjects who received this training had improved locomotor performance and faster reaction times when exposed to the novel sensory stimuli compared to control subjects. Results also demonstrate that individual sensory biases (i.e. increased visual dependency) can predict adaptive responses to novel sensory environments suggesting that individual training prescription can be developed to enhance adaptability. These data indicate that SA

  4. Sensorimotor Interference When Reasoning About Described Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamides, Marios N.; Kyranidou, Melina-Nicole

    The influence of sensorimotor interference was examined in two experiments that compared pointing with iconic arrows and verbal responding in a task that entailed locating target-objects from imagined perspectives. Participants studied text narratives describing objects at locations around them in a remote environment and then responded to targets from memory. Results revealed only minor differences between the two response modes suggesting that bodily cues do not exert severe detrimental interference on spatial reasoning from imagined perspective when non-immediate described environments are used. The implications of the findings are discussed.

  5. Addressing Anger Using Sensorimotor Psychotherapy and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flynn, Sarah M.

    2010-01-01

    A young woman initiated counselling services at a community agency to address her explosive anger that was a remnant of childhood physical and emotional abuse. Sensorimotor psychotherapy was used to help this client learn how to monitor and regulate her sensorimotor processes. In conjunction with this approach, Cognitive behavioural therapy was…

  6. Enhancing Astronaut Performance using Sensorimotor Adaptability Training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob J Bloomberg

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Astronauts experience disturbances in balance and gait function when they return to Earth. The highly plastic human brain enables individuals to modify their behavior to match the prevailing environment. Subjects participating in specially designed variable sensory challenge training programs can enhance their ability to rapidly adapt to novel sensory situations. This is useful in our application because we aim to train astronauts to rapidly formulate effective strategies to cope with the balance and locomotor challenges associated with new gravitational environments - enhancing their ability to learn to learn. We do this by coupling various combinations of sensorimotor challenges with treadmill walking. A unique training system has been developed that is comprised of a treadmill mounted on a motion base to produce movement of the support surface during walking. This system provides challenges to gait stability. Additional sensory variation and challenge are imposed with a virtual visual scene that presents subjects with various combinations of discordant visual information during treadmill walking. This experience allows them to practice resolving challenging and conflicting novel sensory information to improve their ability to adapt rapidly. Information obtained from this work will inform the design of the next generation of sensorimotor countermeasures for astronauts.

  7. Towards a sensorimotor aesthetics of performing art.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvo-Merino, B; Jola, C; Glaser, D E; Haggard, P

    2008-09-01

    The field of neuroaesthetics attempts to identify the brain processes underlying aesthetic experience, including but not limited to beauty. Previous neuroaesthetic studies have focussed largely on paintings and music, while performing arts such as dance have been less studied. Nevertheless, increasing knowledge of the neural mechanisms that represent the bodies and actions of others, and which contribute to empathy, make a neuroaesthetics of dance timely. Here, we present the first neuroscientific study of aesthetic perception in the context of the performing arts. We investigated brain areas whose activity during passive viewing of dance stimuli was related to later, independent aesthetic evaluation of the same stimuli. Brain activity of six naïve male subjects was measured using fMRI, while they watched 24 dance movements, and performed an irrelevant task. In a later session, participants rated each movement along a set of established aesthetic dimensions. The ratings were used to identify brain regions that were more active when viewing moves that received high average ratings than moves that received low average ratings. This contrast revealed bilateral activity in the occipital cortices and in right premotor cortex. Our results suggest a possible role of visual and sensorimotor brain areas in an automatic aesthetic response to dance. This sensorimotor response may explain why dance is widely appreciated in so many human cultures.

  8. Enhancing astronaut performance using sensorimotor adaptability training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, Jacob J; Peters, Brian T; Cohen, Helen S; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P

    2015-01-01

    Astronauts experience disturbances in balance and gait function when they return to Earth. The highly plastic human brain enables individuals to modify their behavior to match the prevailing environment. Subjects participating in specially designed variable sensory challenge training programs can enhance their ability to rapidly adapt to novel sensory situations. This is useful in our application because we aim to train astronauts to rapidly formulate effective strategies to cope with the balance and locomotor challenges associated with new gravitational environments-enhancing their ability to "learn to learn." We do this by coupling various combinations of sensorimotor challenges with treadmill walking. A unique training system has been developed that is comprised of a treadmill mounted on a motion base to produce movement of the support surface during walking. This system provides challenges to gait stability. Additional sensory variation and challenge are imposed with a virtual visual scene that presents subjects with various combinations of discordant visual information during treadmill walking. This experience allows them to practice resolving challenging and conflicting novel sensory information to improve their ability to adapt rapidly. Information obtained from this work will inform the design of the next generation of sensorimotor countermeasures for astronauts.

  9. Sensorimotor abilities predict on-field performance in professional baseball.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burris, Kyle; Vittetoe, Kelly; Ramger, Benjamin; Suresh, Sunith; Tokdar, Surya T; Reiter, Jerome P; Appelbaum, L Gregory

    2018-01-08

    Baseball players must be able to see and react in an instant, yet it is hotly debated whether superior performance is associated with superior sensorimotor abilities. In this study, we compare sensorimotor abilities, measured through 8 psychomotor tasks comprising the Nike Sensory Station assessment battery, and game statistics in a sample of 252 professional baseball players to evaluate the links between sensorimotor skills and on-field performance. For this purpose, we develop a series of Bayesian hierarchical latent variable models enabling us to compare statistics across professional baseball leagues. Within this framework, we find that sensorimotor abilities are significant predictors of on-base percentage, walk rate and strikeout rate, accounting for age, position, and league. We find no such relationship for either slugging percentage or fielder-independent pitching. The pattern of results suggests performance contributions from both visual-sensory and visual-motor abilities and indicates that sensorimotor screenings may be useful for player scouting.

  10. Pramipexole Modulates Interregional Connectivity Within the Sensorimotor Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Zheng; Hammer, Anke; Münte, Thomas F

    2017-05-01

    Pramipexole is widely prescribed to treat Parkinson's disease but has been reported to cause impulse control disorders such as pathological gambling. Recent neurocomputational models suggested that D2 agonists may distort functional connections between the striatum and the motor cortex, resulting in impaired reinforcement learning and pathological gambling. To examine how D2 agonists modulate the striatal-motor connectivity, we carried out a pharmacological resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging study with a double-blind randomized within-subject crossover design. We analyzed the medication-induced changes of network connectivity and topology with two approaches, an independent component analysis (ICA) and a graph theoretical analysis (GTA). The ICA identified the sensorimotor network (SMN) as well as other classical resting-state networks. Within the SMN, the connectivity between the right caudate nucleus and other cortical regions was weaker under pramipexole than under placebo. The GTA measured the topological properties of the whole-brain network at global and regional levels. Both the whole-brain network under placebo and that under pramipexole were identified as small-world networks. The two whole-brain networks were similar in global efficiency, clustering coefficient, small-world index, and modularity. However, the degree of the right caudate nucleus decreased under pramipexole mainly due to the loss of the connectivity with the supplementary motor area, paracentral lobule, and precentral and postcentral gyrus of the SMN. The two network analyses consistently revealed that pramipexole weakened the functional connectivity between the caudate nucleus and the SMN regions.

  11. The sensorimotor contributions to implicit memory, familiarity, and recollection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topolinski, Sascha

    2012-05-01

    The sensorimotor contributions to memory for prior occurrence were investigated. Previous research has shown that both implicit memory and familiarity draw on gains in stimulus-related processing fluency for old, compared with novel, stimuli, but recollection does not. Recently, it has been demonstrated that processing fluency itself resides in stimulus-specific motor simulations or reenactment (e.g., covert pronouncing simulations for words as stimuli). Combining these lines of evidence, it was predicted that stimulus-specific motor interference preventing simulations should impair both implicit memory and familiarity but leave recollection unaffected. This was tested for words as verbal stimuli associated to pronouncing simulations in the oral muscle system (but also for tunes as vocal stimuli and their associated vocal system, Experiment 2). It was found that oral (e.g., chewing gum), compared with manual (kneading a ball), motor interference prevented mere exposure effects (Experiments 1-2), substantially reduced repetition priming in word fragment completion (Experiment 3), reduced the familiarity estimates in a remember-know task (Experiment 5) and in receiver-operating characteristics (Experiment 6), and completely neutralized familiarity measured by self-reports (Experiment 4) and skin conductance responses (Experiment 7), while leaving recollection and free recall unaffected (across Experiments 1-7). This pattern establishes a rare memory dissociation in healthy participants, that is, explicit without implicit memory or recognizing without feeling familiar. Implications for embodied memory and neuropsychology are discussed.

  12. Diminished modulation of preparatory sensorimotor mu rhythm predicts attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder severity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ter Huurne, N; Lozano-Soldevilla, D; Onnink, M; Kan, C; Buitelaar, J; Jensen, O

    2017-08-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by problems in regulating attention and in suppressing disruptive motor activity, i.e. hyperactivity and impulsivity. We recently found evidence that aberrant distribution of posterior α band oscillations (8-12 Hz) is associated with attentional problems in ADHD. The sensorimotor cortex also produces strong 8-12 Hz band oscillations, namely the μ rhythm, and is thought to have a similar inhibitory function. Here, we now investigate whether problems in distributing α band oscillations in ADHD generalize to the μ rhythm in the sensorimotor domain. In a group of adult ADHD (n = 17) and healthy control subjects (n = 18; aged 21-40 years) oscillatory brain activity was recorded using magnetoencephalography during a visuo-spatial attention task. Subjects had to anticipate a target with unpredictable timing and respond by pressing a button. Preparing a motor response, the ADHD group failed to increase hemispheric μ lateralization with relatively higher μ power in sensorimotor regions not engaged in the task, as the controls did (F 1,33 = 8.70, p = 0.006). Moreover, the ADHD group pre-response μ lateralization not only correlated positively with accuracy (r s = 0.64, p = 0.0052) and negatively with intra-individual reaction time variability (r s = -0.52, p = 0.033), but it also correlated negatively with the score on an ADHD rating scale (r s = -0.53, p = 0.028). We suggest that ADHD is associated with an inability to sufficiently inhibit task-irrelevant sensorimotor areas by means of modulating μ oscillatory activity. This could explain disruptive motor activity in ADHD. These results provide further evidence that impaired modulation of α band oscillations is involved in the pathogenesis of ADHD.

  13. Adaptive Changes in Sensorimotor Coordination and Motion Sickness Following Repeated Exposures to Virtual Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harm, D. L.; Taylor, L. C.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2007-01-01

    Virtual environments offer unique training opportunities, particularly for training astronauts and preadapting them to the novel sensory conditions of microgravity. Two unresolved human factors issues in virtual reality (VR) systems are: 1) potential "cybersickness", and 2) maladaptive sensorimotor performance following exposure to VR systems. Interestingly, these aftereffects are often quite similar to adaptive sensorimotor responses observed in astronauts during and/or following space flight. Initial interpretation of novel sensory information may be inappropriate and result in perceptual errors. Active exploratory behavior in a new environment, with resulting feedback and the formation of new associations between sensory inputs and response outputs, promotes appropriate perception and motor control in the new environment. Thus, people adapt to consistent, sustained alterations of sensory input such as those produced by microgravity, unilateral labyrinthectomy and experimentally produced stimulus rearrangements. The purpose of this research was to compare disturbances in sensorimotor coordination produced by dome and head-mounted virtual environment displays and to examine the effects of exposure duration, and repeated exposures to VR systems. The first study examined disturbances in balance control, and the second study examined disturbances in eye-head-hand (EHH) and eye-head coordination.

  14. Overall biological activity of sensorimotor and visual brain cortex of rabbits with early neurological disorders induced by high doses of γ-radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silin, D.Ya.

    1988-01-01

    The overall bioelectrical activity of the sensorimotor and visual brain cortex of rabbits was estimated during early neurological impairment caused by 120 Gy gamma irradiation. The characteristic changes were revealed in the amplitude, form, energy spectrum and spatial biopotential synchronization. The changes in the bioelectrical activity of the brain were associated with the clinically displayed stages of the neurological process development

  15. Sensorimotor Rhythm Neurofeedback Enhances Golf Putting Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Ming-Yang; Huang, Chung-Ju; Chang, Yu-Kai; Koester, Dirk; Schack, Thomas; Hung, Tsung-Min

    2015-12-01

    Sensorimotor rhythm (SMR) activity has been related to automaticity during skilled action execution. However, few studies have bridged the causal link between SMR activity and sports performance. This study investigated the effect of SMR neurofeedback training (SMR NFT) on golf putting performance. We hypothesized that preelite golfers would exhibit enhanced putting performance after SMR NFT. Sixteen preelite golfers were recruited and randomly assigned into either an SMR or a control group. Participants were asked to perform putting while electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded, both before and after intervention. Our results showed that the SMR group performed more accurately when putting and exhibited greater SMR power than the control group after 8 intervention sessions. This study concludes that SMR NFT is effective for increasing SMR during action preparation and for enhancing golf putting performance. Moreover, greater SMR activity might be an EEG signature of improved attention processing, which induces superior putting performance.

  16. Sensorimotor adaptation is influenced by background music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, Otmar

    2010-06-01

    It is well established that listening to music can modify subjects' cognitive performance. The present study evaluates whether this so-called Mozart Effect extends beyond cognitive tasks and includes sensorimotor adaptation. Three subject groups listened to musical pieces that in the author's judgment were serene, neutral, or sad, respectively. This judgment was confirmed by the subjects' introspective reports. While listening to music, subjects engaged in a pointing task that required them to adapt to rotated visual feedback. All three groups adapted successfully, but the speed and magnitude of adaptive improvement was more pronounced with serene music than with the other two music types. In contrast, aftereffects upon restoration of normal feedback were independent of music type. These findings support the existence of a "Mozart effect" for strategic movement control, but not for adaptive recalibration. Possibly, listening to music modifies neural activity in an intertwined cognitive-emotional network.

  17. Sensorimotor Mismapping in Poor-pitch Singing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Hao; Zhang, Wei-Dong

    2017-09-01

    This study proposes that there are two types of sensorimotor mismapping in poor-pitch singing: erroneous mapping and no mapping. We created operational definitions for the two types of mismapping based on the precision of pitch-matching and predicted that in the two types of mismapping, phonation differs in terms of accuracy and the dependence on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action. The study aimed to test this hypothesis by examining the reliability and criterion-related validity of the operational definitions. A within-subject design was used in this study. Thirty-two participants identified as poor-pitch singers were instructed to vocally imitate pure tones and to imitate their own vocal recordings with the same articulation as self-targets and with different articulation from self-targets. Definitions of the types of mismapping were demonstrated to be reliable with the split-half approach and to have good criterion-related validity with findings that pitch-matching with no mapping was less accurate and more dependent on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action than pitch-matching with erroneous mapping was. Furthermore, the precision of pitch-matching was positively associated with its accuracy and its dependence on articulation consistency when mismapping was analyzed on a continuum. Additionally, the data indicated that the self-imitation advantage was a function of articulation consistency. Types of sensorimotor mismapping lead to pitch-matching that differs in accuracy and its dependence on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action. Additionally, articulation consistency produces the self-advantage. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Transfer of learned perception of sensorimotor simultaneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pesavento, Michael J; Schlag, John

    2006-10-01

    Synchronizing a motor response to a predictable sensory stimulus, like a periodic flash or click, relies on feedback (somesthetic, auditory, visual, or other) from the motor response. Practically, this results in a small (<50 ms) asynchrony in which the motor response leads the sensory event. Here we show that the perceived simultaneity in a coincidence-anticipation task (line crossing) is affected by changing the perceived simultaneity in a different task (pacing). In the pace task, human subjects were instructed to press a key in perfect synchrony with a red square flashed every second. In training sessions, feedback was provided by flashing a blue square with each key press, below the red square. There were two types of training pace sessions: one in which the feedback was provided with no delay, the other (adapting), in which the feedback was progressively delayed (up to 100 ms). Subjects' asynchrony was unchanged in the first case, but it was significantly increased in the pace task with delay. In the coincidence-anticipation task, a horizontally moving vertical bar crossed a vertical line in the middle of a screen. Subjects were instructed to press a key exactly when the bar crossed the line. They were given no feedback on their performance. Asynchrony on the line-crossing task was tested after the training pace task with feedback. We found that this asynchrony to be significantly increased even though there never was any feedback on the coincidence-anticipation task itself. Subjects were not aware that their sensorimotor asynchrony had been lengthened (sometimes doubled). We conclude that perception of simultaneity in a sensorimotor task is learned. If this perception is caused by coincidence of signals in the brain, the timing of these signals depends on something-acquired by experience-more adaptable than physiological latencies.

  19. Neural correlates of sensorimotor gating: A metabolic positron emission tomography study in awake rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathrin eRohleder

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Impaired sensorimotor gating occurs in neuropsychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and can be measured using the prepulse inhibition (PPI paradigm of the acoustic startle response. This assay is frequently used to validate animal models of neuropsychiatric disorders and to explore the therapeutic potential of new drugs. The underlying neural network of PPI has been extensively studied with invasive methods and genetic modifications. However, its relevance for healthy untreated animals and the functional interplay between startle- and PPI-related areas during a PPI session is so far unknown. Therefore, we studied awake rats in a PPI paradigm, startle control and background noise control, combined with behavioral [18F]fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET. Subtractive analyses between conditions were used to identify brain regions involved in startle and PPI processing in well-hearing Black hooded rats. For correlative analysis with regard to the amount of PPI we also included hearing-impaired Lister hooded rats that startled more often, because their hearing threshold was just below the lowest prepulses. Metabolic imaging showed that the brain areas proposed for startle and PPI mediation are active during PPI paradigms in healthy untreated rats. More importantly, we show for the first time that the whole PPI modulation network is active during passive PPI sessions, where no selective attention to prepulse or startle stimulus is required. We conclude that this reflects ongoing monitoring of stimulus significance and constant adjustment of sensorimotor gating.

  20. Neural Entrainment and Sensorimotor Synchronization to the Beat in Children with Developmental Dyslexia: An EEG Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lincoln J. Colling

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Tapping in time to a metronome beat (hereafter beat synchronization shows considerable variability in child populations, and individual differences in beat synchronization are reliably related to reading development. Children with developmental dyslexia show impairments in beat synchronization. These impairments may reflect deficiencies in auditory perception of the beat which in turn affect auditory-motor mapping, or may reflect an independent motor deficit. Here, we used a new methodology in EEG based on measuring beat-related steady-state evoked potentials (SS-EPs, Nozaradan et al., 2015 in an attempt to disentangle neural sensory and motor contributions to behavioral beat synchronization in children with dyslexia. Children tapped with both their left and right hands to every second beat of a metronome pulse delivered at 2.4 Hz, or listened passively to the beat. Analyses of preferred phase in EEG showed that the children with dyslexia had a significantly different preferred phase compared to control children in all conditions. Regarding SS-EPs, the groups differed significantly for the passive Auditory listening condition at 2.4 Hz, and showed a trend toward a difference in the Right hand tapping condition at 3.6 Hz (sensorimotor integration measure. The data suggest that neural rhythmic entrainment is atypical in children with dyslexia for both an auditory beat and during sensorimotor coupling (tapping. The data are relevant to a growing literature suggesting that rhythm-based interventions may help language processing in children with developmental disorders of language learning.

  1. Neck muscle vibration can improve sensorimotor function in patients with neck pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beinert, Konstantin; Keller, Martin; Taube, Wolfgang

    2015-03-01

    People with neck pain display a diminished joint position sense and disturbed postural control, which is thought to be a result of impaired somatosensory afferent activity and/or integration. Afferent processing can be artificially manipulated by vibration and was shown to reduce motor performance in healthy subjects. However, the effect of vibration on sensorimotor function in neck pain patients is scarcely investigated. To assess the effect of neck muscle vibration on joint position sense and postural control in neck pain subjects and healthy controls. Case control study. Thirteen neck pain patients and 10 healthy controls participated in the present study. Cervical joint position sense and dynamic and static postural stability. Short-term, targeted neck muscle vibration with 100 Hz was applied after baseline measurement. Vibration had opposite effects in patients and healthy subjects. Patients showed improved joint position sense (pneck pain. Thus, vibration may be used to counteract sensorimotor impairment of the cervical spine. Potential underlying mechanisms are discussed. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. The cerebellum does more than sensory prediction error-based learning in sensorimotor adaptation tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butcher, Peter A; Ivry, Richard B; Kuo, Sheng-Han; Rydz, David; Krakauer, John W; Taylor, Jordan A

    2017-09-01

    Individuals with damage to the cerebellum perform poorly in sensorimotor adaptation paradigms. This deficit has been attributed to impairment in sensory prediction error-based updating of an internal forward model, a form of implicit learning. These individuals can, however, successfully counter a perturbation when instructed with an explicit aiming strategy. This successful use of an instructed aiming strategy presents a paradox: In adaptation tasks, why do individuals with cerebellar damage not come up with an aiming solution on their own to compensate for their implicit learning deficit? To explore this question, we employed a variant of a visuomotor rotation task in which, before executing a movement on each trial, the participants verbally reported their intended aiming location. Compared with healthy control participants, participants with spinocerebellar ataxia displayed impairments in both implicit learning and aiming. This was observed when the visuomotor rotation was introduced abruptly ( experiment 1 ) or gradually ( experiment 2 ). This dual deficit does not appear to be related to the increased movement variance associated with ataxia: Healthy undergraduates showed little change in implicit learning or aiming when their movement feedback was artificially manipulated to produce similar levels of variability ( experiment 3 ). Taken together the results indicate that a consequence of cerebellar dysfunction is not only impaired sensory prediction error-based learning but also a difficulty in developing and/or maintaining an aiming solution in response to a visuomotor perturbation. We suggest that this dual deficit can be explained by the cerebellum forming part of a network that learns and maintains action-outcome associations across trials. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Individuals with cerebellar pathology are impaired in sensorimotor adaptation. This deficit has been attributed to an impairment in error-based learning, specifically, from a deficit in using sensory

  3. Customizing Countermeasure Prescriptions using Predictive Measures of Sensorimotor Adaptability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Peters, B. T.; Mulavara, A. P.; Miller, C. A.; Batson, C. D.; Wood, S. J.; Guined, J. R.; Cohen, H. S.; Buccello-Stout, R.; DeDios, Y. E.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor disturbances during the initial exposure to microgravity and during the readapation phase following a return to a gravitational environment. These alterations may lead to disruption in the ability to perform mission critical functional tasks during and after these gravitational transitions. Astronauts show significant inter-subject variation in adaptive capability following gravitational transitions. The ability to predict the manner and degree to which each individual astronaut will be affected would improve the effectiveness of a countermeasure comprised of a training program designed to enhance sensorimotor adaptability. Due to this inherent individual variability we need to develop predictive measures of sensorimotor adaptability that will allow us to predict, before actual space flight, which crewmember will experience challenges in adaptive capacity. Thus, obtaining this information will allow us to design and implement better sensorimotor adaptability training countermeasures that will be customized for each crewmember's unique adaptive capabilities. Therefore the goals of this project are to: 1) develop a set of predictive measures capable of identifying individual differences in sensorimotor adaptability, and 2) use this information to design sensorimotor adaptability training countermeasures that are customized for each crewmember's individual sensorimotor adaptive characteristics. To achieve these goals we are currently pursuing the following specific aims: Aim 1: Determine whether behavioral metrics of individual sensory bias predict sensorimotor adaptability. For this aim, subjects perform tests that delineate individual sensory biases in tests of visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive function. Aim 2: Determine if individual capability for strategic and plastic-adaptive responses predicts sensorimotor adaptability. For this aim, each subject's strategic and plastic-adaptive motor learning abilities are assessed using

  4. Mosaic model for sensorimotor learning and control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haruno, M; Wolpert, D M; Kawato, M

    2001-10-01

    Humans demonstrate a remarkable ability to generate accurate and appropriate motor behavior under many different and often uncertain environmental conditions. We previously proposed a new modular architecture, the modular selection and identification for control (MOSAIC) model, for motor learning and control based on multiple pairs of forward (predictor) and inverse (controller) models. The architecture simultaneously learns the multiple inverse models necessary for control as well as how to select the set of inverse models appropriate for a given environment. It combines both feedforward and feedback sensorimotor information so that the controllers can be selected both prior to movement and subsequently during movement. This article extends and evaluates the MOSAIC architecture in the following respects. The learning in the architecture was implemented by both the original gradient-descent method and the expectation-maximization (EM) algorithm. Unlike gradient descent, the newly derived EM algorithm is robust to the initial starting conditions and learning parameters. Second, simulations of an object manipulation task prove that the architecture can learn to manipulate multiple objects and switch between them appropriately. Moreover, after learning, the model shows generalization to novel objects whose dynamics lie within the polyhedra of already learned dynamics. Finally, when each of the dynamics is associated with a particular object shape, the model is able to select the appropriate controller before movement execution. When presented with a novel shape-dynamic pairing, inappropriate activation of modules is observed followed by on-line correction.

  5. Anticipatory phase correction in sensorimotor synchronization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repp, Bruno H; Moseley, Gordon P

    2012-10-01

    Studies of phase correction in sensorimotor synchronization often introduce timing perturbations that are unpredictable with regard to direction, magnitude, and position in the stimulus sequence. If participants knew any or all of these parameters in advance, would they be able to anticipate perturbations and thus regain synchrony more quickly? In Experiment 1, we asked musically trained participants to tap in synchrony with short isochronous tone sequences containing a phase shift (PS) of -100, -40, 40, or 100 ms and provided advance information about its direction, position, or both (but not about its magnitude). The first two conditions had little effect, but in the third condition participants shifted their tap in anticipation of the PS, though only by about ±40 ms on average. The phase correction response to the residual PS was also enhanced. In Experiment 2, we provided complete advance information about PSs of various magnitudes either at the time of the immediately preceding tone ("late") or at the time of the tone one position back ("early") while also varying sequence tempo. Anticipatory phase correction was generally conservative and was impeded by fast tempo in the "late" condition. At fast tempi in both conditions, advancing a tap was more difficult than delaying a tap. The results indicate that temporal constraints on anticipatory phase correction resemble those on reactive phase correction. While the latter is usually automatic, this study shows that phase correction can also be controlled consciously for anticipatory purposes. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Sensorimotor learning configures the human mirror system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catmur, Caroline; Walsh, Vincent; Heyes, Cecilia

    2007-09-04

    Cells in the "mirror system" fire not only when an individual performs an action but also when one observes the same action performed by another agent [1-4]. The mirror system, found in premotor and parietal cortices of human and monkey brains, is thought to provide the foundation for social understanding and to enable the development of theory of mind and language [5-9]. However, it is unclear how mirror neurons acquire their mirror properties -- how they derive the information necessary to match observed with executed actions [10]. We address this by showing that it is possible to manipulate the selectivity of the human mirror system, and thereby make it operate as a countermirror system, by giving participants training to perform one action while observing another. Before this training, participants showed event-related muscle-specific responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation over motor cortex during observation of little- and index-finger movements [11-13]. After training, this normal mirror effect was reversed. These results indicate that the mirror properties of the mirror system are neither wholly innate [14] nor fixed once acquired; instead they develop through sensorimotor learning [15, 16]. Our findings indicate that the human mirror system is, to some extent, both a product and a process of social interaction.

  7. Experiments in robotic sensorimotor control during grasp

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stansfield, S.A.

    1993-01-01

    A series of experiments is presented, using a robot manipulator, which attempt to reproduce human sensorimotor control during grasping. The work utilizes a multifingered, dexterous robot hand equipped with a fingertip force sensor to explore dynamic grasp force adjustment during manipulation. The work is primarily concerned with the relationship between the weight of an object and the grasp force required to lift it. Too weak a grasp is unstable and the object will slip from the hand. Too strong a grasp may damage the object and/or the manipulator. An algorithm is presented which reproduces observed human behavior during grasp-and-lift tasks. The algorithm uses tactile information from the sensor to dynamically adjust the grasp force during lift. It is assumed that there is no a priori knowledge about the object to be manipulated. The effects of different arm/hand postures and object surfaces is explored. Finally, the use of sensory data to detect unexpected object motion and to signal transitions between manipulation phases--with the coincident triggering of new motor programs--is investigated

  8. How low can dietary greenhouse gas emissions be reduced without impairing nutritional adequacy, affordability and acceptability of the diet? A modelling study to guide sustainable food choices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perignon, Marlène; Masset, Gabriel; Ferrari, Gaël; Barré, Tangui; Vieux, Florent; Maillot, Matthieu; Amiot, Marie-Josèphe; Darmon, Nicole

    2016-10-01

    To assess the compatibility between reduction of diet-related greenhouse gas emissions (GHGE) and nutritional adequacy, acceptability and affordability dimensions of diet sustainability. Dietary intake, nutritional composition, GHGE and prices were combined for 402 foods selected among those most consumed by participants of the Individual National Study on Food Consumption. Linear programming was used to model diets with stepwise GHGE reductions, minimized departure from observed diet and three scenarios of nutritional constraints: none (FREE), on macronutrients (MACRO) and for all nutrient recommendations (ADEQ). Nutritional quality was assessed using the mean adequacy ratio (MAR) and solid energy density (SED). France. Adults (n 1899). In FREE and MACRO scenarios, imposing up to 30 % GHGE reduction did not affect the MAR, SED and food group pattern of the observed diet, but required substitutions within food groups; higher GHGE reductions decreased diet cost, but also nutritional quality, even with constraints on macronutrients. Imposing all nutritional recommendations (ADEQ) increased the fruits and vegetables quantity, reduced SED and slightly increased diet cost without additional modifications induced by the GHGE constraint up to 30 % reduction; higher GHGE reductions decreased diet cost but required non-trivial dietary shifts from the observed diet. Not all the nutritional recommendations could be met for GHGE reductions ≥70 %. Moderate GHGE reductions (≤30 %) were compatible with nutritional adequacy and affordability without adding major food group shifts to those induced by nutritional recommendations. Higher GHGE reductions either impaired nutritional quality, even when macronutrient recommendations were imposed, or required non-trivial dietary shifts compromising acceptability to reach nutritional adequacy.

  9. Prenatal exposure to gamma/neutron irradiation: Sensorimotor alterations and paradoxical effects on learning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Di Cicco, D.; Antal, S.; Ammassari-Teule, M.

    1991-01-01

    The effects of prenatal exposure on gamma/neutron radiations (0.5 Gy at about the 18th day of fetal life) were studied in a hybrid strain of mice (DBA/Cne males x C57BL/Cne females). During ontogeny, measurements of sensorimotor reflexes revealed in prenatally irradiated mice (1) a delay in sensorial development, (2) deficits in tests involving body motor control, and (3) a reduction of both motility and locomotor activity scores. In adulthood, the behaviour of prenatally irradiated and control mice was examined in the open field test and in reactivity to novelty. Moreover, their learning performance was compared in several situations. The results show that, in the open field test, only rearings were more frequent in irradiated mice. In the presence of a novel object, significant sex x treatment interactions were observed since ambulation and leaning against the novel object increased in irradiated females but decreased in irradiated males. Finally, when submitted to different learning tasks, irradiated mice were impaired in the radial maze, but paradoxically exhibited higher avoidance scores than control mice, possibly because of their low pain thresholds. Taken together, these observations indicate that late prenatal gamma/neutron irradiation induces long lasting alterations at the sensorimotor level which, in turn, can influence learning abilities of adult mice

  10. Role of IGF-1 in cortical plasticity and functional deficit induced by sensorimotor restriction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mysoet, Julien; Dupont, Erwan; Bastide, Bruno; Canu, Marie-Hélène

    2015-09-01

    In the adult rat, sensorimotor restriction by hindlimb unloading (HU) is known to induce impairments in motor behavior as well as a disorganization of somatosensory cortex (shrinkage of the cortical representation of the hindpaw, enlargement of the cutaneous receptive fields, decreased cutaneous sensibility threshold). Recently, our team has demonstrated that IGF-1 level was decreased in the somatosensory cortex of rats submitted to a 14-day period of HU. To determine whether IGF-1 is involved in these plastic mechanisms, a chronic cortical infusion of this substance was performed by means of osmotic minipump. When administered in control rats, IGF-1 affects the size of receptive fields and the cutaneous threshold, but has no effect on the somatotopic map. In addition, when injected during the whole HU period, IGF-1 is interestingly implied in cortical changes due to hypoactivity: the shrinkage of somatotopic representation of hindlimb is prevented, whereas the enlargement of receptive fields is reduced. IGF-1 has no effect on the increase in neuronal response to peripheral stimulation. We also explored the functional consequences of IGF-1 level restoration on tactile sensory discrimination. In HU rats, the percentage of paw withdrawal after a light tactile stimulation was decreased, whereas it was similar to control level in HU-IGF-1 rats. Taken together, the data clearly indicate that IGF-1 plays a key-role in cortical plastic mechanisms and in behavioral alterations induced by a decrease in sensorimotor activity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Sensorimotor Learning during a Marksmanship Task in Immersive Virtual Reality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Hrishikesh M; Khanna, Rajan; Zielinski, David J; Lu, Yvonne; Clements, Jillian M; Potter, Nicholas D; Sommer, Marc A; Kopper, Regis; Appelbaum, Lawrence G

    2018-01-01

    Sensorimotor learning refers to improvements that occur through practice in the performance of sensory-guided motor behaviors. Leveraging novel technical capabilities of an immersive virtual environment, we probed the component kinematic processes that mediate sensorimotor learning. Twenty naïve subjects performed a simulated marksmanship task modeled after Olympic Trap Shooting standards. We measured movement kinematics and shooting performance as participants practiced 350 trials while receiving trial-by-trial feedback about shooting success. Spatiotemporal analysis of motion tracking elucidated the ballistic and refinement phases of hand movements. We found systematic changes in movement kinematics that accompanied improvements in shot accuracy during training, though reaction and response times did not change over blocks. In particular, we observed longer, slower, and more precise ballistic movements that replaced effort spent on corrections and refinement. Collectively, these results leverage developments in immersive virtual reality technology to quantify and compare the kinematics of movement during early learning of full-body sensorimotor orienting.

  12. Forecasting Sensorimotor Adaptability from Baseline Inter-Trial Correlations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaton, K. H.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2014-01-01

    One of the greatest challenges surrounding adaptation to the spaceflight environment is the large variability in symptoms, and corresponding functional impairments, from one crewmember to the next. This renders preflight training and countermeasure development difficult, as a "one-size-fits-all" approach is inappropriate. Therefore, it would be highly advantageous to know ahead of time which crewmembers might have more difficulty adjusting to the novel g-levels inherent to spaceflight. Such knowledge could guide individually customized countermeasures, which would enable more efficient use of crew time, both preflight and inflight, and provide better outcomes. The primary goal of this project is to look for a baseline performance metric that can forecast sensorimotor adaptability without exposure to an adaptive stimulus. We propose a novel hypothesis that considers baseline inter-trial correlations, the trial-to-trial fluctuations in motor performance, as a predictor of individual sensorimotor adaptive capabilities. To-date, a strong relationship has been found between baseline inter-trial correlations and adaptability in two oculomotor systems. For this project, we will explore an analogous predictive mechanism in the locomotion system. METHODS: Baseline Inter-trial Correlations: Inter-trial correlations specify the relationships among repeated trials of a given task that transpire as a consequence of correcting for previous performance errors over multiple timescales. We can quantify the strength of inter-trial correlations by measuring the decay of the autocorrelation function (ACF), which describes how rapidly information from past trials is "forgotten." Processes whose ACFs decay more slowly exhibit longer-term inter-trial correlations (longer memory processes), while processes whose ACFs decay more rapidly exhibit shorterterm inter-trial correlations (shorter memory processes). Longer-term correlations reflect low-frequency activity, which is more easily

  13. Enhancing Functional Performance using Sensorimotor Adaptability Training Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Peters, B. T.; Brady, R.; Audas, C.; Ruttley, T. M.; Cohen, H. S.

    2009-01-01

    During the acute phase of adaptation to novel gravitational environments, sensorimotor disturbances have the potential to disrupt the ability of astronauts to perform functional tasks. The goal of this project is to develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program designed to facilitate recovery of functional capabilities when astronauts transition to different gravitational environments. The project conducted a series of studies that investigated the efficacy of treadmill training combined with a variety of sensory challenges designed to increase adaptability including alterations in visual flow, body loading, and support surface stability.

  14. Technology-aided assessment of sensori-motor function in early infancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro G Allievi

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available There is a pressing need for new techniques capable of providing accurate information about sensori-motor function during the first 2 years of childhood. Here we review current clinical methods and challenges for assessing motor function in early infancy, and discuss the potential benefits of applying technology-assisted methods. We also describe how the use of these tools with neuroimaging, and in particular functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, can shed new light on the intra-cerebral processes underlying neurodevelopmental impairment. This knowledge is of particular relevance in the early infant brain which has an increased capacity for compensatory neural plasticity. Such tools could bring a wealth of knowledge about the underlying pathophysiological processes of diseases such as cerebral palsy; act as biomarkers to monitor the effects of possible therapeutic interventions; and provide clinicians with much needed early diagnostic information.

  15. Acquisition of Automatic Imitation Is Sensitive to Sensorimotor Contingency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Richard; Press, Clare; Dickinson, Anthony; Heyes, Cecilia

    2010-01-01

    The associative sequence learning model proposes that the development of the mirror system depends on the same mechanisms of associative learning that mediate Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning. To test this model, two experiments used the reduction of automatic imitation through incompatible sensorimotor training to assess whether mirror…

  16. The role of sensorimotor difficulties in autism spectrum conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Penelope Hannant

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available AbstractIn addition to difficulties in social communication, current diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum conditions (ASC also incorporate sensorimotor difficulties; repetitive motor movements and atypical reactivity to sensory input (APA, 2013. This paper explores whether sensorimotor difficulties are associated with the development and maintenance of symptoms in ASC. Firstly, studies have shown difficulties coordinating sensory input into planning and executing movement effectively in ASC. Secondly, studies have shown associations between sensory reactivity and motor coordination with core ASC symptoms, suggesting these areas each strongly influence the development of social and communication skills. Thirdly, studies have begun to demonstrate that sensorimotor difficulties in ASC could account for reduced social attention early in development, with a cascading effect on later social, communicative and emotional development. These results suggest that sensorimotor difficulties not only contribute to non-social difficulties such as narrow circumscribed interests, but also to the development of social behaviours such as effectively coordinating eye contact with speech and gesture, interpreting others’ behaviour and responding appropriately. Further research is needed to explore the link between sensory and motor difficulties in ASC, and their contribution to the development and maintenance of ASC.

  17. Workspace and sensorimotor theories : Complementary approaches to experience

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Degenaar, J.; Keijzer, F.

    A serious difficulty for theories of consciousness is to go beyond mere correlation between physical processes and experience. Currently, neural workspace and sensorimotor contingency theories are two of the most promising approaches to make any headway here. This paper explores the relation between

  18. How infants' reaches reveal principles of sensorimotor decision making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dineva, Evelina; Schöner, Gregor

    2018-01-01

    In Piaget's classical A-not-B-task, infants repeatedly make a sensorimotor decision to reach to one of two cued targets. Perseverative errors are induced by switching the cue from A to B, while spontaneous errors are unsolicited reaches to B when only A is cued. We argue that theoretical accounts of sensorimotor decision-making fail to address how motor decisions leave a memory trace that may impact future sensorimotor decisions. Instead, in extant neural models, perseveration is caused solely by the history of stimulation. We present a neural dynamic model of sensorimotor decision-making within the framework of Dynamic Field Theory, in which a dynamic instability amplifies fluctuations in neural activation into macroscopic, stable neural activation states that leave memory traces. The model predicts perseveration, but also a tendency to repeat spontaneous errors. To test the account, we pool data from several A-not-B experiments. A conditional probabilities analysis accounts quantitatively how motor decisions depend on the history of reaching. The results provide evidence for the interdependence among subsequent reaching decisions that is explained by the model, showing that by amplifying small differences in activation and affecting learning, decisions have consequences beyond the individual behavioural act.

  19. Upper extremity sensorimotor control among collegiate football players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laudner, Kevin G

    2012-03-01

    Injuries stemming from shoulder instability are very common among athletes participating in contact sports, such as football. Previous research has shown that increased laxity negatively affects the function of the sensorimotor system potentially leading to a pathological cycle of shoulder dysfunction. Currently, there are no data detailing such effects among football players. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the differences in upper extremity sensorimotor control among football players compared with that of a control group. Forty-five collegiate football players and 70 male control subjects with no previous experience in contact sports participated. All the subjects had no recent history of upper extremity injury. Each subject performed three 30-second upper extremity balance trials on each arm. The balance trials were conducted in a single-arm push-up position with the test arm in the center of a force platform and the subjects' feet on a labile device. The trials were averaged, and the differences in radial area deviation between groups were analyzed using separate 1-way analyses of variance (p football players showed significantly more radial area deviation of the dominant (0.41 ± 1.23 cm2, p = 0.02) and nondominant arms (0.47 ± 1.63 cm2, p = 0.03) when compared with the control group. These results suggest that football players may have decreased sensorimotor control of the upper extremity compared with individuals with no contact sport experience. The decreased upper extremity sensorimotor control among the football players may be because of the frequent impacts accumulated during football participation. Football players may benefit from exercises that target the sensorimotor system. These findings may also be beneficial in the evaluation and treatment of various upper extremity injuries among football players.

  20. The sensorimotor and cognitive deficits in rats following 90- and 120-min transient occlusion of the middle cerebral artery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zvejniece, Liga; Svalbe, Baiba; Liepinsh, Edgars; Pulks, Eduards; Dambrova, Maija

    2012-07-15

    Middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) is the most commonly used method to study the neurological and histological outcomes and the pathological mechanisms of ischaemic stroke. The current work compares sensorimotor and cognitive deficits and the infarct volume in rats following a transient 90- or 120-min MCAO, which allows the appropriate behavioural tests to be chosen based on the goal and design of the experiment. In the beam-walking test, we found significant differences between the 90- and 120-min MCAO groups in the number of foot faults made with the impaired hindlimb on post-stroke days 3, 7 and 14. In the cylinder test, a difference between the 90- and 120-min groups was observed on post-operation day 14. The responses to tactile and proprioceptive stimulation were impaired to a similar extent after 90- and 120-min MCAO in the vibrissae-evoked forelimb-placing and limb-placing tests. Moreover, we found significant memory impairment in the 120-min MCAO group 6 days after the acquisition trial. The brain tissue damage was significantly higher after 120-min occlusion of the MCA compared with 90-min occlusion; the infarct volumes were 13% and 25% of the contralateral hemispheres, respectively. In conclusion, both the 90- and 120-min occlusion models result in a significant impairment of sensorimotor, tactile and proprioceptive function, but memory impairment is only observed in the 120-min MCAO group. The beam-walking and cylinder tests detected neurological dysfunction after the 120-min MCAO, whereas the limb-placing and vibrissae-evoked forelimb-placing tests were able to evaluate the neurological dysfunction in rats after 90- and 120-min MCAO. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Synaptic protein changes after a chronic period of sensorimotor perturbation in adult rats: a potential role of phosphorylation/O-GlcNAcylation interplay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fourneau, Julie; Canu, Marie-Hélène; Cieniewski-Bernard, Caroline; Bastide, Bruno; Dupont, Erwan

    2018-05-28

    In human, a chronic sensorimotor perturbation (SMP) through prolonged body immobilization alters motor task performance through a combination of peripheral and central factors. Studies performed on a rat model of SMP have shown biomolecular changes and a reorganization of sensorimotor cortex through events such as morphological modifications of dendritic spines (number, length, functionality). However, underlying mechanisms are still unclear. It is well known that phosphorylation regulates a wide field of synaptic activity leading to neuroplasticity. Another post-translational modification that interplays with phosphorylation is O-GlcNAcylation. This atypical glycosylation, reversible and dynamic, is involved in essential cellular and physiological processes such as synaptic activity, neuronal morphogenesis, learning and memory. We examined potential roles of phosphorylation/O-GlcNAcylation interplay in synaptic plasticity within rat sensorimotor cortex after a SMP period. For this purpose, sensorimotor cortex synaptosomes were separated by sucrose gradient, in order to isolate a subcellular compartment enriched in proteins involved in synaptic functions. A period of SMP induced plastic changes at the pre- and postsynaptic levels, characterized by a reduction of phosphorylation (synapsin1, AMPAR GluA2) and expression (synaptophysin, PSD-95, AMPAR GluA2) of synaptic proteins, as well as a decrease in MAPK/ERK42 activation. Expression levels of OGT/OGA enzymes was unchanged but we observed a specific reduction of synapsin1 O-GlcNAcylation in sensorimotor cortex synaptosomes. The synergistic regulation of synapsin1 phosphorylation/O-GlcNAcylation could affect presynaptic neurotransmitter release. Associated with other pre- and postsynaptic changes, synaptic efficacy could be impaired in somatosensory cortex of SMP rat. Thus, synapsin1 O-GlcNAcylation/phosphorylation interplay also appears to be involved in this synaptic plasticity by finely regulating neural activity

  2. Sensorimotor Learning in a Computerized Athletic Training Battery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krasich, Kristina; Ramger, Ben; Holton, Laura; Wang, Lingling; Mitroff, Stephen R; Gregory Appelbaum, L

    2016-01-01

    Sensorimotor abilities are crucial for performance in athletic, military, and other occupational activities, and there is great interest in understanding learning in these skills. Here, behavioral performance was measured over three days as twenty-seven participants practiced multiple sessions on the Nike SPARQ Sensory Station (Nike, Inc., Beaverton, Oregon), a computerized visual and motor assessment battery. Wrist-worn actigraphy was recorded to monitor sleep-wake cycles. Significant learning was observed in tasks with high visuomotor control demands but not in tasks of visual sensitivity. Learning was primarily linear, with up to 60% improvement, but did not relate to sleep quality in this normal-sleeping population. These results demonstrate differences in the rate and capacity for learning across perceptual and motor domains, indicating potential targets for sensorimotor training interventions.

  3. Sensorimotor integration for functional recovery and the Bobath approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Mindy F; Panturin, Elia

    2011-04-01

    Bobath therapy is used to treat patients with neurological disorders. Bobath practitioners use hands-on approaches to elicit and reestablish typical movement patterns through therapist-controlled sensorimotor experiences within the context of task accomplishment. One aspect of Bobath practice, the recovery of sensorimotor function, is reviewed within the framework of current motor control theories. We focus on the role of sensory information in movement production, the relationship between posture and movement and concepts related to motor recovery and compensation with respect to this therapeutic approach. We suggest that a major barrier to the evaluation of the therapeutic effectiveness of the Bobath concept is the lack of a unified framework for both experimental identification and treatment of neurological motor deficits. More conclusive analysis of therapeutic effectiveness requires the development of specific outcomes that measure movement quality.

  4. Fashioning the Face: Sensorimotor Simulation Contributes to Facial Expression Recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Adrienne; Rychlowska, Magdalena; Korb, Sebastian; Niedenthal, Paula

    2016-03-01

    When we observe a facial expression of emotion, we often mimic it. This automatic mimicry reflects underlying sensorimotor simulation that supports accurate emotion recognition. Why this is so is becoming more obvious: emotions are patterns of expressive, behavioral, physiological, and subjective feeling responses. Activation of one component can therefore automatically activate other components. When people simulate a perceived facial expression, they partially activate the corresponding emotional state in themselves, which provides a basis for inferring the underlying emotion of the expresser. We integrate recent evidence in favor of a role for sensorimotor simulation in emotion recognition. We then connect this account to a domain-general understanding of how sensory information from multiple modalities is integrated to generate perceptual predictions in the brain. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Sensorimotor learning and the ontogeny of the mirror neuron system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catmur, Caroline

    2013-04-12

    Mirror neurons, which have now been found in the human and songbird as well as the macaque, respond to both the observation and the performance of the same action. It has been suggested that their matching response properties have evolved as an adaptation for action understanding; alternatively, these properties may arise through sensorimotor experience. Here I review mirror neuron response characteristics from the perspective of ontogeny; I discuss the limited evidence for mirror neurons in early development; and I describe the growing body of evidence suggesting that mirror neuron responses can be modified through experience, and that sensorimotor experience is the critical type of experience for producing mirror neuron responses. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Sustained Reduction in Severe Hypoglycemia in Adults With Type 1 Diabetes Complicated by Impaired Awareness of Hypoglycemia: 2-Year Follow-up in the HypoCOMPaSS Randomized Clinical Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Stuart A; Speight, Jane; Leelarathna, Lalantha; Walkinshaw, Emma; Tan, Horng Kai; Bowes, Anita; Lubina-Solomon, Alexandra; Chadwick, Thomas J; Stocken, Deborah D; Brennand, Catherine; Marshall, Sally M; Wood, Ruth; Kerr, David; Flanagan, Daniel; Heller, Simon R; Evans, Mark L; Shaw, James A M

    2018-04-16

    Severe hypoglycemia is a feared complication of type 1 diabetes; yet, few trials have targeted prevention using optimized self-management (educational, therapeutic, and technological support). We aimed to investigate whether improved awareness and reduced severe hypoglycemia, achieved during an intensive randomized clinical trial (RCT), were sustained after return to routine care. Ninety-six adults with type 1 diabetes (29 ± 12 years' duration) and impaired awareness of hypoglycemia at five U.K. tertiary referral diabetes centers were recruited into a 24-week 2 × 2 factorial RCT (HypoCOMPaSS). Participants were randomized to pump (continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion [CSII]) or multiple daily injections (MDIs) and real-time continuous glucose monitoring (RT-CGM) or self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG), with equal education/attention to all groups. At 24 weeks, participants returned to routine care with follow-up until 24 months, including free choice of MDI/CSII; RT-CGM vs. SMBG comparison continued to 24 months. Primary outcome was mean difference (baseline to 24 months [between groups]) in hypoglycemia awareness. Improvement in hypoglycemia awareness was sustained (Gold score at baseline 5.1 ± 1.1 vs. 24 months 3.7 ± 1.9; P diabetes complicated by impaired awareness of hypoglycemia. © 2018 by the American Diabetes Association.

  7. Beam walking can detect differences in walking balance proficiency across a range of sensorimotor abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawers, Andrew; Ting, Lena H

    2015-02-01

    The ability to quantify differences in walking balance proficiency is critical to curbing the rising health and financial costs of falls. Current laboratory-based approaches typically focus on successful recovery of balance while clinical instruments often pose little difficulty for all but the most impaired patients. Rarely do they test motor behaviors of sufficient difficulty to evoke failures in balance control limiting their ability to quantify balance proficiency. Our objective was to test whether a simple beam-walking task could quantify differences in walking balance proficiency across a range of sensorimotor abilities. Ten experts, ten novices, and five individuals with transtibial limb loss performed six walking trials across three different width beams. Walking balance proficiency was quantified as the ratio of distance walked to total possible distance. Balance proficiency was not significantly different between cohorts on the wide-beam, but clear differences between cohorts on the mid and narrow-beams were identified. Experts walked a greater distance than novices on the mid-beam (average of 3.63±0.04m verus 2.70±0.21m out of 3.66m; p=0.009), and novices walked further than amputees (1.52±0.20m; p=0.03). Amputees were unable to walk on the narrow-beam, while experts walked further (3.07±0.14m) than novices (1.55±0.26m; p=0.0005). A simple beam-walking task and an easily collected measure of distance traveled detected differences in walking balance proficiency across sensorimotor abilities. This approach provides a means to safely study and evaluate successes and failures in walking balance in the clinic or lab. It may prove useful in identifying mechanisms underlying falls versus fall recoveries. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Cognitive-behavioral therapy induces sensorimotor and specific electrocortical changes in chronic tic and Tourette's disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morand-Beaulieu, Simon; O'Connor, Kieron P; Sauvé, Geneviève; Blanchet, Pierre J; Lavoie, Marc E

    2015-12-01

    Tic disorders, such as the Gilles de la Tourette syndrome and persistent tic disorder, are neurodevelopmental movement disorders involving impaired motor control. Hence, patients show repetitive unwanted muscular contractions in one or more parts of the body. A cognitive-behavioral therapy, with a particular emphasis on the psychophysiology of tic expression and sensorimotor activation, can reduce the frequency and intensity of tics. However, its impact on motor activation and inhibition is not fully understood. To study the effects of a cognitive-behavioral therapy on electrocortical activation, we recorded the event-related potentials (ERP) and lateralized readiness potentials (LRP), before and after treatment, of 20 patients with tic disorders and 20 healthy control participants (matched on age, sex and intelligence), during a stimulus-response compatibility inhibition task. The cognitive-behavioral therapy included informational, awareness training, relaxation, muscle discrimination, cognitive restructuration and relapse prevention strategies. Our results revealed that prior to treatment; tic patients had delayed stimulus-locked LRP onset latency, larger response-locked LRP peak amplitude, and a frontal overactivation during stimulus inhibition processing. Both stimulus-locked LRP onset latency and response-locked LRP peak amplitude normalized after the cognitive behavioral therapy completion. However, the frontal overactivation related to inhibition remained unchanged following therapy. Our results showed that P300 and reaction times are sensitive to stimulus-response compatibility, but are not related to tic symptoms. Secondly, overactivity of the frontal LPC and impulsivity in TD patients were not affected by treatment. Finally, CBT had normalizing effects on the activation of the pre-motor and motor cortex in TD patients. These results imply specific modifications of motor processes following therapy, while inhibition processes remained unchanged. Given

  9. Sensorimotor Control of the Shoulder in Professional Volleyball Players with Isolated Infraspinatus Muscle Atrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contemori, Samuele; Biscarini, Andrea; Botti, Fabio Massimo; Busti, Daniele; Panichi, Roberto; Pettorossi, Vito Enrico

    2017-06-12

    Isolated infraspinatus muscle atrophy (IIMA) only affects the hitting shoulder of overhead-activity athletes, and is caused by suprascapular nerve neuropathy. No study has assessed the static and dynamic stability of the shoulder in overhead professional athletes with IIMA to reveal possible shoulder sensorimotor alterations. To assess the shoulder static stability, dynamic stability, and strength in professional volleyball players with IIMA and in healthy control players. Cross-sectional study. Research laboratory. Twenty-four male professional volleyball players (12 players with diagnosed IIMA and 12 healthy players) recruited from local volleyball teams. Static stability was evaluated with two independent force platforms and dynamic stability was assessed with the "Upper Quarter Y Balance Test". The static stability assessment was conducted in different support (single hand and both hand) and vision (open and closed eyes) conditions. Data from each test were analyzed with ANOVA and paired t-test models, to highlight statistical differences within and between groups. In addition to reduced abduction and external rotation strength, athletes with IIMA consistently demonstrated significant less static (P < 0.001) and dynamic stability (P < 0,001), compared with the contralateral shoulder and with healthy athletes. Closed eyes condition significantly enhanced the static stability deficit of the shoulder with IIMA (P = 0.039 and P = 0.034 for both hand and single hand support, respectively), but had no effect in healthy contralateral and healthy players' shoulders. This study highlights an impairment of the sensorimotor control system of the shoulder with IIMA, which likely results from both proprioceptive and strength deficits. This condition could yield subtle alteration in the functional use of the shoulder and predispose it to acute or overuse injuries. The results of this study may help athletic trainers and physical/physiotherapists to prevent shoulder injuries

  10. Electrocorticographic activity over sensorimotor cortex and motor function in awake behaving rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulay, Chadwick B; Chen, Xiang Yang; Wolpaw, Jonathan R

    2015-04-01

    Sensorimotor cortex exerts both short-term and long-term control over the spinal reflex pathways that serve motor behaviors. Better understanding of this control could offer new possibilities for restoring function after central nervous system trauma or disease. We examined the impact of ongoing sensorimotor cortex (SMC) activity on the largely monosynaptic pathway of the H-reflex, the electrical analog of the spinal stretch reflex. In 41 awake adult rats, we measured soleus electromyographic (EMG) activity, the soleus H-reflex, and electrocorticographic activity over the contralateral SMC while rats were producing steady-state soleus EMG activity. Principal component analysis of electrocorticographic frequency spectra before H-reflex elicitation consistently revealed three frequency bands: μβ (5-30 Hz), low γ (γ1; 40-85 Hz), and high γ (γ2; 100-200 Hz). Ongoing (i.e., background) soleus EMG amplitude correlated negatively with μβ power and positively with γ1 power. In contrast, H-reflex size correlated positively with μβ power and negatively with γ1 power, but only when background soleus EMG amplitude was included in the linear model. These results support the hypothesis that increased SMC activation (indicated by decrease in μβ power and/or increase in γ1 power) simultaneously potentiates the H-reflex by exciting spinal motoneurons and suppresses it by decreasing the efficacy of the afferent input. They may help guide the development of new rehabilitation methods and of brain-computer interfaces that use SMC activity as a substitute for lost or impaired motor outputs. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  11. Conscious sensation, conscious perception and sensorimotor theories of consciousness

    OpenAIRE

    Gamez, David

    2014-01-01

    This article explores the hypothesis that the differences between our conscious sensations (color, sound, smell, etc.) could be linked to the different ways in which our senses process and structure information. It is also proposed that the organization of our conscious sensations into a conscious perception of a three-dimensional world could be linked to our mastery of sensorimotor contingencies. These hypotheses are supported by a number of observations, including the appearance of consciou...

  12. Virtual Reality Training: "Cybersickness" and Effects on Sensorimotor Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harm, Deborah L.; Taylor, Laura C.

    2003-01-01

    The overall goal of this study is to examine the extent to which exposure to virtual reality (VR) systems produces motion sickness and disrupts sensorimotor functions. Two of the major problems in using VRs are: 1) potential "cybersickness", a form of motion sickness, and 2) maladaptive sensorimotor coordination following virtual environment (VE) training. It is likely that users will eventually adapt to any unpleasant perceptual experiences in a virtual environment. However the most critical problem for training applications is that sensorimotor coordination strategies learned in the VE may not be similar to the responses required in the real environment. This study will evaluate and compare responses to the two types of VR delivery systems (head-mounted display [HMD] and a dome-projection system [DOME]), two exposure duration periods (30 minutes or 60 minutes), and repeated exposures (3 sessions). Specific responses that we will examine include cybersickness severity and symptom patterns, and several sensorimotor functions (eye-hea.d and eye-head-hand coordination, and postural equilibrium). To date, all hardware and software acquisition, development, integration and testing has been completed. A database has been developed and tested for the input, management and storage of all questionnaire data. All data analysis scripts have been developed and tested. Data was collected from 20 subjects in a pilot study that was conducted to determine the amount of training necessary to achieve a stable performance level. Seven subjects are currently enrolled in the study designed to examine the effects of exposure to VE systems on postural control. Data has been collected from two subjects, and it is expected that the results from ten subjects will be presented.

  13. Neural representation of the sensorimotor speech-action-repository

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cornelia eEckers

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available A speech-action-repository (SAR or mental syllabary has been proposed as a central module for sensorimotor processing of syllables. In this approach, syllables occurring frequently within language are assumed to be stored as holistic sensorimotor patterns, while non-frequent syllables need to be assembled from sub-syllabic units. Thus, frequent syllables are processed efficiently and quickly during production or perception by a direct activation of their sensorimotor patterns. Whereas several behavioral psycholinguistic studies provided evidence in support of the existence of a syllabary, fMRI studies have failed to demonstrate its neural reality. In the present fMRI study a reaction paradigm using homogeneous vs. heterogeneous syllable blocks are used during overt vs. covert speech production and auditory vs. visual presentation modes. Two complementary data analyses were performed: (1 in a logical conjunction, activation for syllable processing independent of input modality and response mode was assessed, in order to support the assumption of existence of a supramodal hub within a SAR. (2 In addition priming effects in the BOLD response in homogeneous vs. heterogeneous blocks were measured in order to identify brain regions, which indicate reduced activity during multiple production/perception repetitions of a specific syllable in order to determine state maps. Auditory-visual conjunction analysis revealed an activation network comprising bilateral precentral gyrus and left inferior frontal gyrus (area 44. These results are compatible with the notion of a supramodal hub within the SAR. The main effect of homogeneity priming revealed an activation pattern of areas within frontal, temporal, and parietal lobe. These findings are taken to represent sensorimotor state maps of the SAR. In conclusion, the present study provided preliminary evidence for a SAR.

  14. Mina: A Sensorimotor Robotic Orthosis for Mobility Assistance

    OpenAIRE

    Raj, Anil K.; Neuhaus, Peter D.; Moucheboeuf, Adrien M.; Noorden, Jerryll H.; Lecoutre, David V.

    2011-01-01

    While most mobility options for persons with paraplegia or paraparesis employ wheeled solutions, significant adverse health, psychological, and social consequences result from wheelchair confinement. Modern robotic exoskeleton devices for gait assistance and rehabilitation, however, can support legged locomotion systems for those with lower extremity weakness or paralysis. The Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) has developed the Mina, a prototype sensorimotor robotic ort...

  15. Sensorimotor learning and the ontogeny of the mirror neuron system

    OpenAIRE

    Catmur, C

    2013-01-01

    Mirror neurons, which have now been found in the human and songbird as well as the macaque, respond to both the observation and the performance of the same action. It has been suggested that their matching response properties have evolved as an adaptation for action understanding; alternatively, these properties may arise through sensorimotor experience. Here I review mirror neuron response characteristics from the perspective of ontogeny; I discuss the limited evidence for mirror neurons in ...

  16. Two Mechanisms of Sensorimotor Set Adaptation to Inclined Stance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyoung-Hyun Lee

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Orientation of posture relative to the environment depends on the contributions from the somatosensory, vestibular, and visual systems mixed in varying proportions to produce a sensorimotor set. Here, we probed the sensorimotor set composition using a postural adaptation task in which healthy adults stood on an inclined surface for 3 min. Upon returning to a horizontal surface, participants displayed a range of postural orientations – from an aftereffect that consisted of a large forward postural lean to an upright stance with little or no aftereffect. It has been hypothesized that the post-incline postural change depends on each individual’s sensorimotor set: whether the set was dominated by the somatosensory or vestibular system: Somatosensory dominance would cause the lean aftereffect whereas vestibular dominance should steer stance posture toward upright orientation. We investigated the individuals who displayed somatosensory dominance by manipulating their attention to spatial orientation. We introduced a distraction condition in which subjects concurrently performed a difficult arithmetic subtraction task. This manipulation altered the time course of their post-incline aftereffect. When not distracted, participants returned to upright stance within the 3-min period. However, they continued leaning forward when distracted. These results suggest that the mechanism of sensorimotor set adaptation to inclined stance comprises at least two components. The first component reflects the dominant contribution from the somatosensory system. Since the postural lean was observed among these subjects even when they were not distracted, it suggests that the aftereffect is difficult to overcome. The second component includes a covert attentional component which manifests as the dissipation of the aftereffect and the return of posture to upright orientation.

  17. Sensorimotor Adaptability Training Improves Motor and Dual-Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J.J.; Peters, B.T.; Mulavara, A.P.; Brady, R.; Batson, C.; Cohen, H.S.

    2009-01-01

    The overall objective of our project is to develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program designed to facilitate recovery of functional capabilities when astronauts transition to different gravitational environments. The goal of our current study was to determine if SA training using variation in visual flow and support surface motion produces improved performance in a novel sensory environment and demonstrate the retention characteristics of SA training.

  18. Daily repetitive sensory stimulation of the paretic hand for the treatment of sensorimotor deficits in patients with subacute stroke: RESET, a randomized, sham-controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kattenstroth, Jan C; Kalisch, Tobias; Sczesny-Kaiser, Matthias; Greulich, Wolfgang; Tegenthoff, Martin; Dinse, Hubert R

    2018-01-09

    Repetitive sensory stimulation (RSS) adapts the timing of stimulation protocols used in cellular studies to induce synaptic plasticity. In healthy subjects, RSS leads to widespread sensorimotor cortical reorganization paralleled by improved sensorimotor behavior. Here, we investigated whether RSS reduces sensorimotor upper limb impairment in patients with subacute stroke more effectively than conventional therapy. A single-blinded sham-controlled clinical trial assessed the effectiveness of RSS in treating sensorimotor deficits of the upper limbs. Patients with subacute unilateral ischemic stroke were randomly assigned to receive standard therapy in combination with RSS or with sham RSS. Patients were masked to treatment allocation. RSS consisted of intermittent 20 Hz electrical stimulation applied on the affected hand for 45 min/day, 5 days per week, for 2 weeks, and was transmitted using custom-made stimulation-gloves with built-in electrodes contacting each fingertip separately. Before and after the intervention, we assessed light-touch and tactile discrimination, proprioception, dexterity, grip force, and subtasks of the Jebsen Taylor hand-function test for the non-affected and the affected hand. Data from these quantitative tests were combined into a total performance index serving as primary outcome measure. In addition, tolerability and side effects of RSS intervention were recorded. Seventy one eligible patients were enrolled and randomly assigned to receive RSS treatment (n = 35) or sham RSS (n = 36). Data of 25 patients were not completed because they were transferred to another hospital, resulting in n = 23 for each group. Before treatment, sensorimotor performance between groups was balanced (p = 0.237). After 2 weeks of the intervention, patients in the group receiving standard therapy with RSS showed significantly better restored sensorimotor function than the control group (standardized mean difference 0.57; 95% CI -0

  19. Sensorimotor Learning during a Marksmanship Task in Immersive Virtual Reality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hrishikesh M. Rao

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Sensorimotor learning refers to improvements that occur through practice in the performance of sensory-guided motor behaviors. Leveraging novel technical capabilities of an immersive virtual environment, we probed the component kinematic processes that mediate sensorimotor learning. Twenty naïve subjects performed a simulated marksmanship task modeled after Olympic Trap Shooting standards. We measured movement kinematics and shooting performance as participants practiced 350 trials while receiving trial-by-trial feedback about shooting success. Spatiotemporal analysis of motion tracking elucidated the ballistic and refinement phases of hand movements. We found systematic changes in movement kinematics that accompanied improvements in shot accuracy during training, though reaction and response times did not change over blocks. In particular, we observed longer, slower, and more precise ballistic movements that replaced effort spent on corrections and refinement. Collectively, these results leverage developments in immersive virtual reality technology to quantify and compare the kinematics of movement during early learning of full-body sensorimotor orienting.

  20. [Modeling developmental aspects of sensorimotor control of speech production].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kröger, B J; Birkholz, P; Neuschaefer-Rube, C

    2007-05-01

    Detailed knowledge of the neurophysiology of speech acquisition is important for understanding the developmental aspects of speech perception and production and for understanding developmental disorders of speech perception and production. A computer implemented neural model of sensorimotor control of speech production was developed. The model is capable of demonstrating the neural functions of different cortical areas during speech production in detail. (i) Two sensory and two motor maps or neural representations and the appertaining neural mappings or projections establish the sensorimotor feedback control system. These maps and mappings are already formed and trained during the prelinguistic phase of speech acquisition. (ii) The feedforward sensorimotor control system comprises the lexical map (representations of sounds, syllables, and words of the first language) and the mappings from lexical to sensory and to motor maps. The training of the appertaining mappings form the linguistic phase of speech acquisition. (iii) Three prelinguistic learning phases--i. e. silent mouthing, quasi stationary vocalic articulation, and realisation of articulatory protogestures--can be defined on the basis of our simulation studies using the computational neural model. These learning phases can be associated with temporal phases of prelinguistic speech acquisition obtained from natural data. The neural model illuminates the detailed function of specific cortical areas during speech production. In particular it can be shown that developmental disorders of speech production may result from a delayed or incorrect process within one of the prelinguistic learning phases defined by the neural model.

  1. Sensorimotor Network Crucial for Inferring Amusement from Smiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paracampo, Riccardo; Tidoni, Emmanuele; Borgomaneri, Sara; di Pellegrino, Giuseppe; Avenanti, Alessio

    2017-11-01

    Understanding whether another's smile reflects authentic amusement is a key challenge in social life, yet, the neural bases of this ability have been largely unexplored. Here, we combined transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with a novel empathic accuracy (EA) task to test whether sensorimotor and mentalizing networks are critical for understanding another's amusement. Participants were presented with dynamic displays of smiles and explicitly requested to infer whether the smiling individual was feeling authentic amusement or not. TMS over sensorimotor regions representing the face (i.e., in the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and ventral primary somatosensory cortex (SI)), disrupted the ability to infer amusement authenticity from observed smiles. The same stimulation did not affect performance on a nonsocial task requiring participants to track the smiling expression but not to infer amusement. Neither TMS over prefrontal and temporo-parietal areas supporting mentalizing, nor peripheral control stimulations, affected performance on either task. Thus, motor and somatosensory circuits for controlling and sensing facial movements are causally essential for inferring amusement from another's smile. These findings highlight the functional relevance of IFG and SI to amusement understanding and suggest that EA abilities may be grounded in sensorimotor networks for moving and feeling the body. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Neural predictors of sensorimotor adaptation rate and savings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassady, Kaitlin; Ruitenberg, Marit; Koppelmans, Vincent; Reuter-Lorenz, Patricia; De Dios, Yiri; Gadd, Nichole; Wood, Scott; Riascos Castenada, Roy; Kofman, Igor; Bloomberg, Jacob; Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Seidler, Rachael

    2018-04-01

    In this study, we investigate whether individual variability in the rate of visuomotor adaptation and multiday savings is associated with differences in regional gray matter volume and resting-state functional connectivity. Thirty-four participants performed a manual adaptation task during two separate test sessions, on average 9 days apart. Functional connectivity strength between sensorimotor, dorsal cingulate, and temporoparietal regions of the brain was found to predict the rate of learning during the early phase of the adaptation task. In contrast, default mode network connectivity strength was found to predict both the rate of learning during the late adaptation phase and savings. As for structural predictors, greater gray matter volume in temporoparietal and occipital regions predicted faster early learning, whereas greater gray matter volume in superior posterior regions of the cerebellum predicted faster late learning. These findings suggest that the offline neural predictors of early adaptation may facilitate the cognitive aspects of sensorimotor adaptation, supported by the involvement of temporoparietal and cingulate networks. The offline neural predictors of late adaptation and savings, including the default mode network and the cerebellum, likely support the storage and modification of newly acquired sensorimotor representations. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Structural and functional hyperconnectivity within the sensorimotor system in xenomelia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hänggi, Jürgen; Vitacco, Deborah A; Hilti, Leonie M; Luechinger, Roger; Kraemer, Bernd; Brugger, Peter

    2017-03-01

    Xenomelia is a rare condition characterized by the persistent and compulsive desire for the amputation of one or more physically healthy limbs. We highlight the neurological underpinnings of xenomelia by assessing structural and functional connectivity by means of whole-brain connectome and network analyses of regions previously implicated in empirical research in this condition. We compared structural and functional connectivity between 13 xenomelic men with matched controls using diffusion tensor imaging combined with fiber tractography and resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Altered connectivity in xenomelia within the sensorimotor system has been predicted. We found subnetworks showing structural and functional hyperconnectivity in xenomelia compared with controls. These subnetworks were lateralized to the right hemisphere and mainly comprised by nodes belonging to the sensorimotor system. In the connectome analyses, the paracentral lobule, supplementary motor area, postcentral gyrus, basal ganglia, and the cerebellum were hyperconnected to each other, whereas in the xenomelia-specific network analyses, hyperconnected nodes have been found in the superior parietal lobule, primary and secondary somatosensory cortex, premotor cortex, basal ganglia, thalamus, and insula. Our study provides empirical evidence of structural and functional hyperconnectivity within the sensorimotor system including those regions that are core for the reconstruction of a coherent body image. Aberrant connectivity is a common response to focal neurological damage. As exemplified here, it may affect different brain regions differentially. Due to the small sample size, our findings must be interpreted cautiously and future studies are needed to elucidate potential associations between hyperconnectivity and limb disownership reported in xenomelia.

  4. Disturbed sensorimotor and electrophysiological patterns in lead intoxicated rats during development are restored by curcumin I.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hind Benammi

    Full Text Available Lead poisoning is one of the most significant health problem of environmental origin. It is known to cause different damages in the central and peripheral nervous system which could be represented by several neurophysiological and behavioral symptoms. In this study we firstly investigated the effect of lead prenatal exposure in rats to (3g/L, from neonatal to young age, on the motor/sensory performances, excitability of the spinal cord and gaits during development. Then we evaluated neuroprotective effects of curcumin I (Cur I against lead neurotoxicity, by means of grasping and cliff avoidance tests to reveal the impairment of the sensorimotor functions in neonatal rats exposed prenatally to lead. In addition, extracellular recordings of motor output in spinal cord revealed an hyper-excitability of spinal networks in lead treated rats. The frequency of induced fictive locomotion was also increased in treated rats. At the young age, rats exhibited an impaired locomotor gait. All those abnormalities were attenuated by Cur I treatment at a dose of 16g/kg. Based on our finding, Cur I has shown features of a potent chemical compound able to restore the neuronal and the relative locomotor behaviors disturbances induced by lead intoxication. Therefore, this chemical can be recommended as a new therapeutic trial against lead induced neurotoxicity.

  5. Age- and sex-related disturbance in a battery of sensorimotor and cognitive tasks in Kunming mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Gui-Hai; Wang, Yue-Ju; Zhang, Li-Qun; Zhou, Jiang-Ning

    2004-12-15

    A battery of tasks, i.e. beam walking, open field, tightrope, radial six-arm water maze (RAWM), novel-object recognition and olfactory discrimination, was used to determine whether there was age- and sex-related memory deterioration in Kunming (KM) mice, and whether these tasks are independent or correlated with each other. Two age groups of KM mice were used: a younger group (7-8 months old, 12 males and 11 females) and an older group (17-18 months old, 12 males and 12 females). The results showed that the spatial learning ability and memory in the RAWM were lower in older female KM mice relative to younger female mice and older male mice. Consistent with this, in the novel-object recognition task, a non-spatial cognitive task, older female mice but not older male mice had impairment of short-term memory. In olfactory discrimination, another non-spatial task, the older mice retained this ability. Interestingly, female mice performed better than males, especially in the younger group. The older females exhibited sensorimotor impairment in the tightrope task and low locomotor activity in the open-field task. Moreover, older mice spent a longer time in the peripheral squares of the open-field than younger ones. The non-spatial cognitive performance in the novel-object recognition and olfactory discrimination tasks was related to performance in the open-field, whereas the spatial cognitive performance in the RAWM was not related to performance in any of the three sensorimotor tasks. These results suggest that disturbance of spatial learning and memory, as well as selective impairment of non-spatial learning and memory, existed in older female KM mice.

  6. Shared Action Spaces: a basis function framework for social re-calibration of sensorimotor representations supporting joint action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni ePezzulo

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The article explores the possibilities of formalizing and explaining the mechanisms that support spatial and social perspective alignment sustained over the duration of a social interaction. The basic proposed principle is that in social contexts the mechanisms for sensorimotor transformations and multisensory integration (learn to incorporate information relative to the other actor(s, similar to the "re-calibration" of visual receptive fields in response to repeated tool use. This process aligns or merges the co-actors' spatial representations and creates a "Shared Action Space" supporting key computations of social interactions and joint actions; for example, the remapping between the coordinate systems and frames of reference of the co-actors, including perspective taking, the sensorimotor transformations required for lifting jointly an object, and the predictions of the sensory effects of such joint action. The social re-calibration is proposed to be based on common basis function maps and could constitute an optimal solution to sensorimotor transformation and multisensory integration in joint action or more in general social interaction contexts. However, certain situations such as discrepant postural and viewpoint alignment and associated differences in perspectives between the co-actors could constrain the process quite differently. We discuss how alignment is achieved in the first place, and how it is maintained over time, providing a taxonomy of various forms and mechanisms of space alignment and overlap based, for instance, on automaticity vs. control of the transformations between the two agents. Finally, we discuss the link between low-level mechanisms for the sharing of space and high-level mechanisms for the sharing of cognitive representations.

  7. Improving Sensorimotor Function and Adaptation using Stochastic Vestibular Stimulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvan, R. C.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.; Clark, T. K.; Merfeld, D. M.; Oman, C. M.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor changes during adaption to G-transitions that occur when entering and exiting microgravity. Post space flight, these sensorimotor disturbances can include postural and gait instability, visual performance changes, manual control disruptions, spatial disorientation, and motion sickness, all of which can hinder the operational capabilities of the astronauts. Crewmember safety would be significantly increased if sensorimotor changes brought on by gravitational changes could be mitigated and adaptation could be facilitated. The goal of this research is to investigate and develop the use of electrical stochastic vestibular stimulation (SVS) as a countermeasure to augment sensorimotor function and facilitate adaptation. For this project, SVS will be applied via electrodes on the mastoid processes at imperceptible amplitude levels. We hypothesize that SVS will improve sensorimotor performance through the phenomena of stochastic resonance, which occurs when the response of a nonlinear system to a weak input signal is optimized by the application of a particular nonzero level of noise. In line with the theory of stochastic resonance, a specific optimal level of SVS will be found and tested for each subject [1]. Three experiments are planned to investigate the use of SVS in sensory-dependent tasks and performance. The first experiment will aim to demonstrate stochastic resonance in the vestibular system through perception based motion recognition thresholds obtained using a 6-degree of freedom Stewart platform in the Jenks Vestibular Laboratory at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. A range of SVS amplitudes will be applied to each subject and the subjectspecific optimal SVS level will be identified as that which results in the lowest motion recognition threshold, through previously established, well developed methods [2,3,4]. The second experiment will investigate the use of optimal SVS in facilitating sensorimotor adaptation to system

  8. Sensorimotor speech disorders in Parkinson's disease: Programming and execution deficits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karin Zazo Ortiz

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Introduction: Dysfunction in the basal ganglia circuits is a determining factor in the physiopathology of the classic signs of Parkinson's disease (PD and hypokinetic dysarthria is commonly related to PD. Regarding speech disorders associated with PD, the latest four-level framework of speech complicates the traditional view of dysarthria as a motor execution disorder. Based on findings that dysfunctions in basal ganglia can cause speech disorders, and on the premise that the speech deficits seen in PD are not related to an execution motor disorder alone but also to a disorder at the motor programming level, the main objective of this study was to investigate the presence of sensorimotor disorders of programming (besides the execution disorders previously described in PD patients. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in a sample of 60 adults matched for gender, age and education: 30 adult patients diagnosed with idiopathic PD (PDG and 30 healthy adults (CG. All types of articulation errors were reanalyzed to investigate the nature of these errors. Interjections, hesitations and repetitions of words or sentences (during discourse were considered typical disfluencies; blocking, episodes of palilalia (words or syllables were analyzed as atypical disfluencies. We analysed features including successive self-initiated trial, phoneme distortions, self-correction, repetition of sounds and syllables, prolonged movement transitions, additions or omissions of sounds and syllables, in order to identify programming and/or execution failures. Orofacial agility was also investigated. Results: The PDG had worse performance on all sensorimotor speech tasks. All PD patients had hypokinetic dysarthria. Conclusion: The clinical characteristics found suggest both execution and programming sensorimotor speech disorders in PD patients.

  9. Sensorimotor memory biases weight perception during object lifting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vonne evan Polanen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available When lifting an object, the brain uses visual cues and an internal object representation to predict its weight and scale fingertip forces accordingly. Once available, tactile information is rapidly integrated to update the weight prediction and refine the internal object representation. If visual cues cannot be used to predict weight, force planning relies on implicit knowledge acquired from recent lifting experience, termed sensorimotor memory. Here, we investigated whether perception of weight is similarly biased according to previous lifting experience and how this is related to force scaling. Participants grasped and lifted series of light or heavy objects in a semi-randomized order and estimated their weights. As expected, we found that forces were scaled based on previous lifts (sensorimotor memory and these effects increased depending on the length of recent lifting experience. Importantly, perceptual weight estimates were also influenced by the preceding lift, resulting in lower estimations after a heavy lift compared to a light one. In addition, the weight estimations were negatively correlated with the magnitude of planned force parameters. This perceptual bias was only found if the current lift was light, but not heavy since the magnitude of sensorimotor memory effects had, according to Weber’s law, relatively less impact on heavy compared to light objects. A control experiment tested the importance of active lifting in mediating these perceptual changes and showed that when weights are passively applied on the hand, no effect of previous sensory experience is found on perception. These results highlight how fast learning of novel object lifting dynamics can shape weight perception and demonstrate a tight link between action planning and perception control. If predictive force scaling and actual object weight do not match, the online motor corrections, rapidly implemented to downscale forces, will also downscale weight estimation in

  10. Sensorimotor gating characteristics of violent men with comorbid psychosis and dissocial personality disorder: Relationship with antisocial traits and psychosocial deprivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sedgwick, Ottilie; Young, Susan; Greer, Ben; Arnold, Jack; Parsons, Aisling; Puzzo, Ignazio; Terracciano, Mariafatima; Das, Mrigendra; Kumari, Veena

    2017-07-06

    Evidence suggests violence amongst those with psychosis is not aetiologically homogeneous, and that a large proportion of those who engage in violent behaviour have a comorbid antisocial personality disorder. Initial investigations indicate that this subgroup has distinct historical and neuropsychological characteristics, which may indicate diverse treatment needs. This study investigated sensorimotor gating characteristics of violent men with diagnoses of both psychosis and dissocial personality disorder (DPD) (n=21) relative to violent men with psychosis alone (n=12), DPD alone (n=14) and healthy, non-violent male controls (n=27), using the prepulse inhibition (PPI) paradigm. The results indicated that, relative to the psychosis alone and healthy control groups, the comorbid group had lower PPI, especially at 60-ms prepulse-to-pulse interval. The DPD group took an intermediary position and did not differ from any group. Antisocial personality traits (factor two scores of the Psychopathy Checklist - Revised), and greater severity of childhood psychosocial deprivation (including physical and sexual abuse), were significantly correlated with poor PPI across the clinical sample. The findings suggest diverse sensorimotor gating profiles amongst subgroups of violent offenders, with comorbid psychosis and DPD showing most impairment. This is consistent with a 'double dose' of deficit explanation amongst those with both diagnoses, explained at least in part by presence of antisocial personality traits and childhood psychosocial deprivation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. The effects of hemorrhagic parenchymal infarction on the establishment of sensori-motor structural and functional connectivity in early infancy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arichi, T.; Edwards, A.D.; Counsell, S.J.; Mondi, V.; Tusor, N.; Merchant, N.; Allievi, A.G.; Burdet, E.; Chew, A.T.; Martinez-Biarge, M.; Cowan, F.M.

    2014-01-01

    The objective of the study was to characterize alterations of structural and functional connectivity within the developing sensori-motor system in infants with focal perinatal brain injury and at high risk of cerebral palsy. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data were used to study the developing functional and structural connectivity framework in six infants born prematurely at term equivalent age. This was first characterised in three infants without focal pathology, which was then compared to that derived from three infants with unilateral haemorrhagic parenchymal infarction and a subsequent focal periventricular white matter lesion who developed later haemiparesis. Functional responses to passive hand movement were in the contralateral perirolandic cortex, regardless of focal pathology. In infants with unilateral periventricular injury, afferent thalamo-cortical tracts appeared to have developed compensatory trajectories which circumvented areas of damage. In contrast, efferent corticospinal tracts showed marked asymmetry at term equivalent age following focal brain injury. Sensori-motor network analysis suggested that inter-hemispheric functional connectivity is largely preserved despite pathology and that impairment may be associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcome. Following focal perinatal brain injury, altered structural and functional connectivity is already present and can be characterized with MRI at term equivalent age. The results of this small case series suggest that these techniques may provide valuable new information about prognosis and the pathophysiology underlying cerebral palsy. (orig.)

  12. The effects of hemorrhagic parenchymal infarction on the establishment of sensori-motor structural and functional connectivity in early infancy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arichi, T.; Edwards, A.D. [Kings College London, St Thomas' Hospital, Department of Perinatal Imaging and Health, Division of Imaging Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, London (United Kingdom); Imperial College London, Department of Bioengineering, London (United Kingdom); Counsell, S.J.; Mondi, V.; Tusor, N.; Merchant, N. [Kings College London, St Thomas' Hospital, Department of Perinatal Imaging and Health, Division of Imaging Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, London (United Kingdom); Allievi, A.G.; Burdet, E. [Imperial College London, Department of Bioengineering, London (United Kingdom); Chew, A.T. [Kings College London, St Thomas' Hospital, Department of Perinatal Imaging and Health, Division of Imaging Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, London (United Kingdom); Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, Department of Paediatrics, London (United Kingdom); Martinez-Biarge, M.; Cowan, F.M. [Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, Department of Paediatrics, London (United Kingdom)

    2014-11-15

    The objective of the study was to characterize alterations of structural and functional connectivity within the developing sensori-motor system in infants with focal perinatal brain injury and at high risk of cerebral palsy. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data were used to study the developing functional and structural connectivity framework in six infants born prematurely at term equivalent age. This was first characterised in three infants without focal pathology, which was then compared to that derived from three infants with unilateral haemorrhagic parenchymal infarction and a subsequent focal periventricular white matter lesion who developed later haemiparesis. Functional responses to passive hand movement were in the contralateral perirolandic cortex, regardless of focal pathology. In infants with unilateral periventricular injury, afferent thalamo-cortical tracts appeared to have developed compensatory trajectories which circumvented areas of damage. In contrast, efferent corticospinal tracts showed marked asymmetry at term equivalent age following focal brain injury. Sensori-motor network analysis suggested that inter-hemispheric functional connectivity is largely preserved despite pathology and that impairment may be associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcome. Following focal perinatal brain injury, altered structural and functional connectivity is already present and can be characterized with MRI at term equivalent age. The results of this small case series suggest that these techniques may provide valuable new information about prognosis and the pathophysiology underlying cerebral palsy. (orig.)

  13. Tactile stimulation interventions: influence of stimulation parameters on sensorimotor behavior and neurophysiological correlates in healthy and clinical samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parianen Lesemann, Franca H; Reuter, Eva-Maria; Godde, Ben

    2015-04-01

    The pure exposure to extensive tactile stimulation, without the requirement of attention or active training, has been revealed to enhance sensorimotor functioning presumably due to an induction of plasticity in the somatosensory cortex. The induced effects, including increased tactile acuity and manual dexterity have repeatedly been observed in basic as well as clinical research. However, results vary greatly in respect to the strength and direction of the effects on the behavioral and on the brain level. Multiple evidences show that differences in the stimulation protocols (e.g., two vs. multiple stimulation sites) and parameters (e.g., duration, frequency, and amplitude) might contribute to this variability of effects. Nevertheless, stimulation protocols have not been comprehensively compared yet. Identifying favorable parameters for tactile stimulation interventions is especially important because of its possible application as a treatment option for patients suffering from sensory loss, maladaptive plasticity, or certain forms of motor impairment. This review aims to compare the effects of different tactile stimulation protocols and to assess possible implications for tactile interventions. Our goal is to identify ways of optimizing stimulation protocols to improve sensorimotor performance. To this end, we reviewed research on tactile stimulation in the healthy population, with a focus on the effectiveness of the applied parameters regarding psychophysiological measures. We discuss the association of stimulation-induced changes on the behavioral level with alterations in neural representations and response characteristics. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Effects of using the nintendo wii fit plus platform in the sensorimotor training of gait disorders in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves, Giovanna Barros; Leite, Marco Antônio A; Orsini, Marco; Pereira, João Santos

    2014-01-17

    The use of the Nintendo Wii has been considered a good alternative in the motor rehabilitation of individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD), requiring simultaneous interaction to develop strategies for physical, visual, auditory, cognitive, psychological and social activities in the performing of virtual activities, resulting in improvement in functional performance and gait. The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of virtual sensorimotor activity on gait disorders in people with PD. Fifteen subjects with a clinical diagnosis of PD were submitted to the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS III), Schwab and England Activities of Daily Living Scale (SE), Functional Independence Measure (FIM), and biomechanical gait analysis using digital images taken with a video camera before and after the treatment program. The activities with the Nintendo Wii virtual platform were standardized into three categories: aerobics, balance and Wii plus exercises. Participants carried out separate virtual exercises for 40 min, twice a week, for a total of 14 sessions. The program improved sensorimotor performance in PD gait, with an increase in stride length and gait speed, in addition to a reduction in motor impairment, especially in items of rigidity and flexibility of the lower limbs evaluated by UPDRS III, and greater functional independence, as evidenced in the SE and FIM scales. Improvements in items related to locomotion and stair climbing were also observed. The training was effective in motor recovery in chronic neurodegenerative diseases, showing improvement in motor performance and functional independence in individuals with PD.

  15. Neural Signature of Value-Based Sensorimotor Prioritization in Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blangero, Annabelle; Kelly, Simon P

    2017-11-01

    In situations in which impending sensory events demand fast action choices, we must be ready to prioritize higher-value courses of action to avoid missed opportunities. When such a situation first presents itself, stimulus-action contingencies and their relative value must be encoded to establish a value-biased state of preparation for an impending sensorimotor decision. Here, we sought to identify neurophysiological signatures of such processes in the human brain (both female and male). We devised a task requiring fast action choices based on the discrimination of a simple visual cue in which the differently valued sensory alternatives were presented 750-800 ms before as peripheral "targets" that specified the stimulus-action mapping for the upcoming decision. In response to the targets, we identified a discrete, transient, spatially selective signal in the event-related potential (ERP), which scaled with relative value and strongly predicted the degree of behavioral bias in the upcoming decision both across and within subjects. This signal is not compatible with any hitherto known ERP signature of spatial selection and also bears novel distinctions with respect to characterizations of value-sensitive, spatially selective activity found in sensorimotor areas of nonhuman primates. Specifically, a series of follow-up experiments revealed that the signal was reliably invoked regardless of response laterality, response modality, sensory feature, and reward valence. It was absent, however, when the response deadline was relaxed and the strategic need for biasing removed. Therefore, more than passively representing value or salience, the signal appears to play a versatile and active role in adaptive sensorimotor prioritization. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In many situations such as fast-moving sports, we must be ready to act fast in response to sensory events and, in our preparation, prioritize courses of action that lead to greater rewards. Although behavioral effects of

  16. Sensorimotor peripheral nerve function and physical activity in older men

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lange-Maia, B. S.; Cauley, J A; Newman, Anne B

    2016-01-01

    We determined whether sensorimotor peripheral nerve (PN) function was associated with physical activity (PA) in older men. The Osteoporotic Fractures in Men Study Pittsburgh, PA, site (n = 328, age 78.8 ± 4.7 years) conducted PN testing, including: peroneal motor and sural sensory nerve conduction...... (latencies, amplitudes: CMAP and SNAP for motor and sensory amplitude, respectively), 1.4g/10g monoflament (dorsum of the great toe), and neuropathy symptoms. ANOVA and multivariate linear regression modeled PN associations with PA (Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly [PASE] and SenseWear Armband). After...

  17. Learning to perceive in the sensorimotor approach: Piaget's theory of equilibration interpreted dynamically.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Paolo, Ezequiel Alejandro; Barandiaran, Xabier E; Beaton, Michael; Buhrmann, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    if understanding is required for perception, how can we learn to perceive something new, something we do not yet understand? According to the sensorimotor approach, perception involves mastery of regular sensorimotor co-variations that depend on the agent and the environment, also known as the "laws" of sensorimotor contingencies (SMCs). In this sense, perception involves enacting relevant sensorimotor skills in each situation. It is important for this proposal that such skills can be learned and refined with experience and yet up to this date, the sensorimotor approach has had no explicit theory of perceptual learning. The situation is made more complex if we acknowledge the open-ended nature of human learning. In this paper we propose Piaget's theory of equilibration as a potential candidate to fulfill this role. This theory highlights the importance of intrinsic sensorimotor norms, in terms of the closure of sensorimotor schemes. It also explains how the equilibration of a sensorimotor organization faced with novelty or breakdowns proceeds by re-shaping pre-existing structures in coupling with dynamical regularities of the world. This way learning to perceive is guided by the equilibration of emerging forms of skillful coping with the world. We demonstrate the compatibility between Piaget's theory and the sensorimotor approach by providing a dynamical formalization of equilibration to give an explicit micro-genetic account of sensorimotor learning and, by extension, of how we learn to perceive. This allows us to draw important lessons in the form of general principles for open-ended sensorimotor learning, including the need for an intrinsic normative evaluation by the agent itself. We also explore implications of our micro-genetic account at the personal level.

  18. Learning to perceive in the sensorimotor approach: Piaget's theory of equilibration interpreted dynamically

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezequiel Alejandro Di Paolo

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Learning to perceive faces a classical paradox: if understanding is required for perception, how can we learn to perceive something new, something we do not yet understand? According to the sensorimotor approach, perception involves mastery of regular sensorimotor co-variations that depend on the agent and the environment, also known as the ‘laws’ of sensorimotor contingencies. In this sense, perception involves enacting relevant sensorimotor skills in each situation. It is important for this proposal that such skills can be learned and refined with experience and yet up to this date, the sensorimotor approach has had no explicit theory of perceptual learning. The situation is made more complex if we acknowledge the open-ended nature of human learning. In this paper we propose Piaget’s theory of equilibration as a potential candidate to fulfill this role. This theory highlights the importance of intrinsic sensorimotor norms, in terms of the closure of sensorimotor schemes. It also explains how the equilibration of a sensorimotor organization faced with novelty or breakdowns proceeds by re-shaping pre-existing structures in coupling with dynamical regularities of the world. This way learning to perceive is guided by the equilibration of emerging forms of skillful coping with the world. We demonstrate the compatibility between Piaget’s theory and the sensorimotor approach by providing a dynamical formalization of equilibration to give an explicit micro-genetic account of sensorimotor learning and, by extension, of how we learn to perceive. This allows us to draw important lessons in the form of general principles for open-ended sensorimotor learning, including the need for an intrinsic normative evaluation by the agent itself. We also explore implications of our micro-genetic account at the personal level.

  19. A sensorimotor account of vision and visual consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Regan, J K; Noë, A

    2001-10-01

    Many current neurophysiological, psychophysical, and psychological approaches to vision rest on the idea that when we see, the brain produces an internal representation of the world. The activation of this internal representation is assumed to give rise to the experience of seeing. The problem with this kind of approach is that it leaves unexplained how the existence of such a detailed internal representation might produce visual consciousness. An alternative proposal is made here. We propose that seeing is a way of acting. It is a particular way of exploring the environment. Activity in internal representations does not generate the experience of seeing. The outside world serves as its own, external, representation. The experience of seeing occurs when the organism masters what we call the governing laws of sensorimotor contingency. The advantage of this approach is that it provides a natural and principled way of accounting for visual consciousness, and for the differences in the perceived quality of sensory experience in the different sensory modalities. Several lines of empirical evidence are brought forward in support of the theory, in particular: evidence from experiments in sensorimotor adaptation, visual "filling in," visual stability despite eye movements, change blindness, sensory substitution, and color perception.

  20. Changing motor perception by sensorimotor conflicts and body ownership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salomon, R.; Fernandez, N. B.; van Elk, M.; Vachicouras, N.; Sabatier, F.; Tychinskaya, A.; Llobera, J.; Blanke, O.

    2016-01-01

    Experimentally induced sensorimotor conflicts can result in a loss of the feeling of control over a movement (sense of agency). These findings are typically interpreted in terms of a forward model in which the predicted sensory consequences of the movement are compared with the observed sensory consequences. In the present study we investigated whether a mismatch between movements and their observed sensory consequences does not only result in a reduced feeling of agency, but may affect motor perception as well. Visual feedback of participants’ finger movements was manipulated using virtual reality to be anatomically congruent or incongruent to the performed movement. Participants made a motor perception judgment (i.e. which finger did you move?) or a visual perceptual judgment (i.e. which finger did you see moving?). Subjective measures of agency and body ownership were also collected. Seeing movements that were visually incongruent to the performed movement resulted in a lower accuracy for motor perception judgments, but not visual perceptual judgments. This effect was modified by rotating the virtual hand (Exp.2), but not by passively induced movements (Exp.3). Hence, sensorimotor conflicts can modulate the perception of one’s motor actions, causing viewed “alien actions” to be felt as one’s own. PMID:27225834

  1. Sex differences in sensorimotor mu rhythms during selective attentional processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popovich, C; Dockstader, C; Cheyne, D; Tannock, R

    2010-12-01

    We used magnetoencephalography to investigate the effect of directed attention on sensorimotor mu (8-12 Hz) response (mu reactivity) to non-painful electrical stimulation of the median nerve in healthy adults. Mu desynchronization in the 10-12 Hz bandwidth is typically observed during higher-order cognitive functions including selective attentional processing of sensorimotor information (Pfurtscheller, Neuper, & Krauz, 2000). We found attention-related sex differences in mu reactivity, with females showing (i) prolonged mu desynchrony when attending to somatosensory stimuli, (ii) attentional modulation of the mu response based on whether attention was directed towards or away from somatosensory stimuli, which was absent in males, and (iii) a trend for greater neuronal excitability of the primary somatosensory region suggesting greater physiological responsiveness to sensory stimulation overall. Our findings suggest sex differences in attentional control strategies when processing somatosensory stimuli, whose salience may be greater for females. These sex differences in attention to somatosensory stimuli may help elucidate the well-documented sex biases in pain processing wherein females typically report greater sensitivity to experimental and clinical pain. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Twitching in sensorimotor development from sleeping rats to robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Mark S; Marques, Hugo Gravato; Iida, Fumiya

    2013-06-17

    It is still not known how the 'rudimentary' movements of fetuses and infants are transformed into the coordinated, flexible and adaptive movements of adults. In addressing this important issue, we consider a behavior that has been perennially viewed as a functionless by-product of a dreaming brain: the jerky limb movements called myoclonic twitches. Recent work has identified the neural mechanisms that produce twitching as well as those that convey sensory feedback from twitching limbs to the spinal cord and brain. In turn, these mechanistic insights have helped inspire new ideas about the functional roles that twitching might play in the self-organization of spinal and supraspinal sensorimotor circuits. Striking support for these ideas is coming from the field of developmental robotics: when twitches are mimicked in robot models of the musculoskeletal system, the basic neural circuitry undergoes self-organization. Mutually inspired biological and synthetic approaches promise not only to produce better robots, but also to solve fundamental problems concerning the developmental origins of sensorimotor maps in the spinal cord and brain. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Functional and structural balances of homologous sensorimotor regions in multiple sclerosis fatigue

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cogliati Dezza, I; Zito, G; Tomasevic, L

    2015-01-01

    regions-known to be crucial for sensorimotor networks effectiveness-decrease with MS fatigue increase. Functional connectivity measures at rest and during a simple motor task (weak handgrip of either the right or left hand) were derived from primary sensorimotor areas electroencephalographic recordings......Fatigue in multiple sclerosis (MS) is a highly disabling symptom. Among the central mechanisms behind it, an involvement of sensorimotor networks is clearly evident from structural and functional studies. We aimed at assessing whether functional/structural balances of homologous sensorimotor...... in 27 mildly disabled MS patients. Structural MRI-derived inter-hemispheric asymmetries included the cortical thickness of Rolandic regions and the volume of thalami. Fatigue symptoms increased together with the functional inter-hemispheric imbalance of sensorimotor homologous areas activities at rest...

  4. Animals models of maladaptive traits: Disorders in sensorimotor gating and attentional quantifiable responses as possible endophenotypes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Pedro Vargas

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Traditional diagnostic scales are based on a number of symptoms to evaluate and classify mental diseases. In many cases, this process becomes subjective, since the patient must calibrate the magnitude of his/her symptoms and therefore the severity of his/her disorder. A completely different approach is based on the study of the more vulnerable traits of cognitive disorders. In this regard, animal models of mental illness could be a useful tool to characterise indicators of possible cognitive dysfunctions in humans. Specifically, several cognitive disorders such as schizophrenia involve a dysfunction in the mesocorticolimbic dopaminergic system during development. These variations in dopamine levels or dopamine receptor sensibility correlate with many behavioural disturbances. These behaviours may be included in a specific phenotype and may be analysed under controlled conditions in the laboratory. The present study provides an introductory overview of different quantitative traits that could be used as a possible risk indicator for different mental disorders, helping to define a specific endophenotype. Specifically, we examine different experimental procedures to measure impaired response in attention linked to sensorimotor gating as a possible personality trait involved in maladaptive behaviours.

  5. Delaying mobility disability in people with Parkinson disease using a sensorimotor agility exercise program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Laurie A; Horak, Fay B

    2009-04-01

    This article introduces a new framework for therapists to develop an exercise program to delay mobility disability in people with Parkinson disease (PD). Mobility, or the ability to efficiently navigate and function in a variety of environments, requires balance, agility, and flexibility, all of which are affected by PD. This article summarizes recent research identifying how constraints on mobility specific to PD, such as rigidity, bradykinesia, freezing, poor sensory integration, inflexible program selection, and impaired cognitive processing, limit mobility in people with PD. Based on these constraints, a conceptual framework for exercises to maintain and improve mobility is presented. An example of a constraint-focused agility exercise program, incorporating movement principles from tai chi, kayaking, boxing, lunges, agility training, and Pilates exercises, is presented. This new constraint-focused agility exercise program is based on a strong scientific framework and includes progressive levels of sensorimotor, resistance, and coordination challenges that can be customized for each patient while maintaining fidelity. Principles for improving mobility presented here can be incorporated into an ongoing or long-term exercise program for people with PD.

  6. Effects of a cognitive modulator in the theta and alpha asymmetry during a typewriting task: a sensorimotor integration perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Marlo; Machado, Sergio; Miana, Luiz Cláudio; Machado, Dionis; Bastos, Victor Hugo; Velasques, Bruna; Cagy, Maurício; Basile, Luis F; Piedade, Roberto; Ribeiro, Pedro

    2009-06-01

    This study aimed to elucidate cortical mechanisms and to identify the areas where occur such mechanisms due to interaction between bromazepam and motor learning. The sample was composed of 45 healthy subjects randomly distributed in 3 groups: placebo (n=15), bromazepam 3 mg (n=15) or bromazepam 6 mg (n=15). To perform the experimental task, subjects sat comfortably at a distance of approximately 20 cm from the typewriter. The typewriter keyboard was covered with a wooden box to avoid visual information about the hands' position. The typewriting task was performed concomitantly with EEG recording. ANOVA two-way results indicated a decreased asymmetry in sensorimotor areas in the experimental groups. Our interpretation is that moderate doses of bromazepam may improve performance on tasks with predictable elements to promote stability of psychomotor functions, but may also impair performance on tasks executed in unpredictable environments.

  7. Sensorimotor nucleus NIf is necessary for auditory processing but not vocal motor output in the avian song system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardin, Jessica A; Raksin, Jonathan N; Schmidt, Marc F

    2005-04-01

    Sensorimotor integration in the avian song system is crucial for both learning and maintenance of song, a vocal motor behavior. Although a number of song system areas demonstrate both sensory and motor characteristics, their exact roles in auditory and premotor processing are unclear. In particular, it is unknown whether input from the forebrain nucleus interface of the nidopallium (NIf), which exhibits both sensory and premotor activity, is necessary for both auditory and premotor processing in its target, HVC. Here we show that bilateral NIf lesions result in long-term loss of HVC auditory activity but do not impair song production. NIf is thus a major source of auditory input to HVC, but an intact NIf is not necessary for motor output in adult zebra finches.

  8. Principles of brain plasticity in improving sensorimotor function of the knee and leg in patients with anterior cruciate ligament injury: a double-blind randomized exploratory trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ageberg Eva

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Severe traumatic knee injury, including injury to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL, leads to impaired sensorimotor function. Although improvements are achieved by training, impairment often persists. Because good sensorimotor function is associated with better patient-reported function and a potential lower risk of future joint problems, more effective treatment is warranted. Temporary cutaneous anesthesia of adjacent body parts was successfully used on the hand and foot to improve sensorimotor function. The aim of this study was to test whether this principle of brain plasticity could be used on the knee. The hypothesis was that temporary anesthesia of the skin area above and below the knee would improve sensorimotor function of the ipsilateral knee and leg in subjects with ACL injury. Methods In this double-blind exploratory study, 39 subjects with ACL injury (mean age 24 years, SD 5.2, 49% women, mean 52 weeks after injury or reconstruction and self-reported functional limitations and lack of trust in the knee were randomized to temporary local cutaneous application of anesthetic (EMLA® (n = 20 or placebo cream (n = 19. Fifty grams of EMLA®, or placebo, was applied on the leg 10 cm above and 10 cm below the center of patella, leaving the area around the knee without cream. Measures of sensory function (perception of touch, vibration sense, knee kinesthesia and motor function (knee muscle strength, hop test were assessed before and after 90 minutes of treatment with EMLA® or placebo. The paired t-test was used for comparisons within groups and analysis of variance between groups, except for ordinal data where the Wilcoxon signed rank test, or Mann–Whitney test, was used. The number of subjects needed was determined by an a priori sample size calculation. Results No statistically significant or clinically relevant differences were seen over time (before vs. after in the measures of sensory or motor

  9. Using the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform in the sensorimotor training of freezing of gait in Parkinson’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Giovanna Barros Goncalves

    2013-01-01

    Gait disturbances are one of the main limiting factors for autonomy and quality of life in individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD), and freezing of gait (FoG) is a common phenomenon that affects one-third of this population. Thus the effect of the implementation of a therapeutic program in a sensorimotor virtual environment through the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform on the motor impairment caused by FoG in individuals with PD is analyzed. A sample of 30 volunteers with PD was subdivided i...

  10. Using the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform in the sensorimotor training of freezing of gait in Parkinson’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Goncalves,Giovanna Barros

    2013-01-01

    Gait disturbances are one of the main limiting factors for autonomy and quality of life in individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD), and freezing of gait (FoG) is a common phenomenon that affects one-third of this population. Thus the effect of the implementation of a therapeutic program in a sensorimotor virtual environment through the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform on the motor impairment caused by FoG in individuals with PD is analyzed. A sample of 30 volunteers with PD...

  11. Aging and selective sensorimotor strategies in the regulation of upright balance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bugnariu Nicoleta

    2007-06-01

    ability of CNS to resolve sensory conflicts. However, even with a one-hour immersion in VE and exposure to sensory conflicts, it is possible for the CNS to recalibrate and adapt to the changes, while improving balance capability in older adults. Conclusion Preventive and rehabilitation programs targeting postural control in older adults should take into account the possible impairment of sensory organization or sensorimotor integration and include VE training under conditions of sensory conflicts.

  12. Altered sensorimotor activation patterns in idiopathic dystonia-an activation likelihood estimation meta-analysis of functional brain imaging studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Løkkegaard, Annemette; Herz, Damian M; Haagensen, Brian Numelin

    2016-01-01

    Dystonia is characterized by sustained or intermittent muscle contractions causing abnormal, often repetitive, movements or postures. Functional neuroimaging studies have yielded abnormal task-related sensorimotor activation in dystonia, but the results appear to be rather variable across studies....... Further, study size was usually small including different types of dystonia. Here we performed an activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analysis of functional neuroimaging studies in patients with primary dystonia to test for convergence of dystonia-related alterations in task-related activity...... postcentral gyrus, right superior temporal gyrus and dorsal midbrain. Apart from the midbrain cluster, all between-group differences in task-related activity were retrieved in a sub-analysis including only the 14 studies on patients with focal dystonia. For focal dystonia, an additional cluster of increased...

  13. Sensorimotor learning in Dab1(scm) (scrambler) mutant mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lalonde, R; Strazielle, C

    2011-04-15

    Homozygous Dab1(scm) mouse mutants with cell ectopias in cerebellar cortex and neocortex were compared with non-ataxic controls on two tests of motor coordination: rotorod and grid climbing. Even at the minimal speed of 4 rpm and unlike controls, none of the Dab1(scm) mutants reached criterion on the constant speed rotorod. In contrast, Dab1(scm) mutants improved their performances on the vertical grid over the course of the same number of trials. Thus, despite massive cerebellar degeneration, sensorimotor learning for equilibrium is still possible, indicating the potential usefulness of the grid-climbing test in determining residual functions in mice with massive cerebellar damage. Copyright © 2010. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  14. Neural correlates of auditory temporal predictions during sensorimotor synchronization

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    Nadine ePecenka

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Musical ensemble performance requires temporally precise interpersonal action coordination. To play in synchrony, ensemble musicians presumably rely on anticipatory mechanisms that enable them to predict the timing of sounds produced by co-performers. Previous studies have shown that individuals differ in their ability to predict upcoming tempo changes in paced finger-tapping tasks (indexed by cross-correlations between tap timing and pacing events and that the degree of such prediction influences the accuracy of sensorimotor synchronization (SMS and interpersonal coordination in dyadic tapping tasks. The current functional magnetic resonance imaging study investigated the neural correlates of auditory temporal predictions during SMS in a within-subject design. Hemodynamic responses were recorded from 18 musicians while they tapped in synchrony with auditory sequences containing gradual tempo changes under conditions of varying cognitive load (achieved by a simultaneous visual n-back working-memory task comprising three levels of difficulty: observation only, 1-back, and 2-back object comparisons. Prediction ability during SMS decreased with increasing cognitive load. Results of a parametric analysis revealed that the generation of auditory temporal predictions during SMS recruits (1 a distributed network in cortico-cerebellar motor-related brain areas (left dorsal premotor and motor cortex, right lateral cerebellum, SMA proper and bilateral inferior parietal cortex and (2 medial cortical areas (medial prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate cortex. While the first network is presumably involved in basic sensory prediction, sensorimotor integration, motor timing, and temporal adaptation, activation in the second set of areas may be related to higher-level social-cognitive processes elicited during action coordination with auditory signals that resemble music performed by human agents.

  15. Sensorimotor Skills Impact on Temporal Expectation: Evidence from Swimmers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Bove

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Aim of this study was to assess whether the ability to predict the temporal outcome of a sport action was influenced by the sensorimotor skills previously acquired during a specific sport training. Four groups, each of 30 subjects, were enrolled in this study; subjects of three groups practiced different sports disciplines (i.e., swimming, rhythmic gymnastics, and water polo at competitive level whilst the fourth group consisted of control subjects. Subjects were asked to observe a video showing a swimmer doing two laps in crawl style. This video was shown 36 times, and was occluded after variable intervals, randomized across trials, by a dark window that started 3, 6, and 12 s before the swimmer touched the poolside. During the occluded interval, subjects were asked to indicate when the swimmer touched the edge of the pool by clicking on any button of the laptop keyboard. We found that swimmers were more accurate than subjects performing other sports in temporally predicting the final outcome of the swimming task. Particularly, we observed a significant difference in absolute timing error that was lower in swimmers compared to other groups when they were asked to make a temporal prediction with the occluded interval of short duration (i.e., 3 s. Our findings demonstrate that the ability to extract temporal patterns of a motor action depends largely on the subjective expertise, suggesting that sport-acquired sensorimotor skills impact on the temporal representation of the previously observed action, allowing subjects to predict the time course of the action in absence of visual information.

  16. Beta Peak Frequencies at Rest Correlate with Endogenous GABA+/Cr Concentrations in Sensorimotor Cortex Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas J Baumgarten

    Full Text Available Neuronal oscillatory activity in the beta band (15-30 Hz is a prominent signal within the human sensorimotor cortex. Computational modeling and pharmacological modulation studies suggest an influence of GABAergic interneurons on the generation of beta band oscillations. Accordingly, studies in humans have demonstrated a correlation between GABA concentrations and power of beta band oscillations. It remains unclear, however, if GABA concentrations also influence beta peak frequencies and whether this influence is present in the sensorimotor cortex at rest and without pharmacological modulation. In the present study, we investigated the relation between endogenous GABA concentration (measured by magnetic resonance spectroscopy and beta oscillations (measured by magnetoencephalography at rest in humans. GABA concentrations and beta band oscillations were measured for left and right sensorimotor and occipital cortex areas. A significant positive linear correlation between GABA concentration and beta peak frequency was found for the left sensorimotor cortex, whereas no significant correlations were found for the right sensorimotor and the occipital cortex. The results show a novel connection between endogenous GABA concentration and beta peak frequency at rest. This finding supports previous results that demonstrated a connection between oscillatory beta activity and pharmacologically modulated GABA concentration in the sensorimotor cortex. Furthermore, the results demonstrate that for a predominantly right-handed sample, the correlation between beta band oscillations and endogenous GABA concentrations is evident only in the left sensorimotor cortex.

  17. Beta Peak Frequencies at Rest Correlate with Endogenous GABA+/Cr Concentrations in Sensorimotor Cortex Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgarten, Thomas J.; Oeltzschner, Georg; Hoogenboom, Nienke; Wittsack, Hans-Jörg; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2016-01-01

    Neuronal oscillatory activity in the beta band (15–30 Hz) is a prominent signal within the human sensorimotor cortex. Computational modeling and pharmacological modulation studies suggest an influence of GABAergic interneurons on the generation of beta band oscillations. Accordingly, studies in humans have demonstrated a correlation between GABA concentrations and power of beta band oscillations. It remains unclear, however, if GABA concentrations also influence beta peak frequencies and whether this influence is present in the sensorimotor cortex at rest and without pharmacological modulation. In the present study, we investigated the relation between endogenous GABA concentration (measured by magnetic resonance spectroscopy) and beta oscillations (measured by magnetoencephalography) at rest in humans. GABA concentrations and beta band oscillations were measured for left and right sensorimotor and occipital cortex areas. A significant positive linear correlation between GABA concentration and beta peak frequency was found for the left sensorimotor cortex, whereas no significant correlations were found for the right sensorimotor and the occipital cortex. The results show a novel connection between endogenous GABA concentration and beta peak frequency at rest. This finding supports previous results that demonstrated a connection between oscillatory beta activity and pharmacologically modulated GABA concentration in the sensorimotor cortex. Furthermore, the results demonstrate that for a predominantly right-handed sample, the correlation between beta band oscillations and endogenous GABA concentrations is evident only in the left sensorimotor cortex. PMID:27258089

  18. Early self-managed focal sensorimotor rehabilitative training enhances functional mobility and sensorimotor function in patients following total knee replacement: a controlled clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moutzouri, Maria; Gleeson, Nigel; Coutts, Fiona; Tsepis, Elias; John, Gliatis

    2018-02-01

    To assess the effects of early self-managed focal sensorimotor training compared to functional exercise training after total knee replacement on functional mobility and sensorimotor function. A single-blind controlled clinical trial. University Hospital of Rion, Greece. A total of 52 participants following total knee replacement. The primary outcome was the Timed Up and Go Test and the secondary outcomes were balance, joint position error, the Knee Outcome Survey Activities of Daily Living Scale, and pain. Patients were assessed on three separate occasions (presurgery, 8 weeks post surgery, and 14 weeks post surgery). Participants were randomized to either focal sensorimotor exercise training (experimental group) or functional exercise training (control group). Both groups received a 12-week home-based programme prescribed for 3-5 sessions/week (35-45 minutes). Consistently greater improvements ( F 2,98  = 4.3 to 24.8; P effect size range of 1.3-6.5. Overall, the magnitude of improvements in functional mobility and sensorimotor function endorses using focal sensorimotor training as an effective mode of rehabilitation following knee replacement.

  19. Reduction of Interhemispheric Functional Connectivity in Sensorimotor and Visual Information Processing Pathways in Schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xu Lang

    2016-01-01

    Conclusions: Interhemispheric functional connectivity in the sensorimotor and visual processing pathways was reduced in patients with schizophrenia, but this reduction was unrelated to the disease state; thus, this reduction may serve as a trait marker of schizophrenia.

  20. Effects of Water and Land-based Sensorimotor Training Programs on Static Balance among University Students

    OpenAIRE

    Abdolhamid Daneshjoo; Ashril Yusof

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the effect of sensorimotor training on static balance in two different environments; in water and on land. Thirty non-clinical university male students (aged 22±0.85 years) were divided randomly into three groups; water, land and control groups. The experimental groups performed their respective sensorimotor training programs for 6 weeks (3 times per week). The Stork Stand Balance Test was used to examine the static balance at pre- and post-time points. Significant main ef...

  1. Visual Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... site Sitio para adolescentes Body Mind Sexual Health Food & Fitness Diseases & Conditions Infections Drugs & Alcohol School & Jobs Sports Expert Answers (Q&A) Staying Safe Videos for Educators Search English Español Visual Impairment KidsHealth / For Teens / Visual Impairment What's in ...

  2. Type-2 diabetes mellitus reduces cortical thickness and decreases oxidative metabolism in sensorimotor regions after stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferris, Jennifer K; Peters, Sue; Brown, Katlyn E; Tourigny, Katherine; Boyd, Lara A

    2018-05-01

    Individuals with type-2 diabetes mellitus experience poor motor outcomes after ischemic stroke. Recent research suggests that type-2 diabetes adversely impacts neuronal integrity and function, yet little work has considered how these neuronal changes affect sensorimotor outcomes after stroke. Here, we considered how type-2 diabetes impacted the structural and metabolic function of the sensorimotor cortex after stroke using volumetric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). We hypothesized that the combination of chronic stroke and type-2 diabetes would negatively impact the integrity of sensorimotor cortex as compared to individuals with chronic stroke alone. Compared to stroke alone, individuals with stroke and diabetes had lower cortical thickness bilaterally in the primary somatosensory cortex, and primary and secondary motor cortices. Individuals with stroke and diabetes also showed reduced creatine levels bilaterally in the sensorimotor cortex. Contralesional primary and secondary motor cortex thicknesses were negatively related to sensorimotor outcomes in the paretic upper-limb in the stroke and diabetes group such that those with thinner primary and secondary motor cortices had better motor function. These data suggest that type-2 diabetes alters cerebral energy metabolism, and is associated with thinning of sensorimotor cortex after stroke. These factors may influence motor outcomes after stroke.

  3. OCD is associated with an altered association between sensorimotor gating and cortical and subcortical 5-HT1b receptor binding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pittenger, Christopher; Adams, Thomas G; Gallezot, Jean-Dominique; Crowley, Michael J; Nabulsi, Nabeel; James Ropchan; Gao, Hong; Kichuk, Stephen A; Simpson, Ryan; Billingslea, Eileen; Hannestad, Jonas; Bloch, Michael; Mayes, Linda; Bhagwagar, Zubin; Carson, Richard E

    2016-05-15

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by impaired sensorimotor gating, as measured using prepulse inhibition (PPI). This effect may be related to abnormalities in the serotonin (5-HT) system. 5-HT1B agonists can impair PPI, produce OCD-like behaviors in animals, and exacerbate OCD symptoms in humans. We measured 5-HT1B receptor availability using (11)C-P943 positron emission tomography (PET) in unmedicated, non-depressed OCD patients (n=12) and matched healthy controls (HC; n=12). Usable PPI data were obtained from 20 of these subjects (10 from each group). There were no significant main effects of OCD diagnosis on 5-HT1B receptor availability ((11)C-P943 BPND); however, the relationship between PPI and (11)C-P943 BPND differed dramatically and significantly between groups. 5-HT1B receptor availability in the basal ganglia and thalamus correlated positively with PPI in controls; these correlations were lost or even reversed in the OCD group. In cortical regions there were no significant correlations with PPI in controls, but widespread positive correlations in OCD patients. Positive correlations between 5-HT1B receptor availability and PPI were consistent across diagnostic groups only in two structures, the orbitofrontal cortex and the amygdala. Differential associations of 5-HT1B receptor availability with PPI in patients suggest functionally important alterations in the serotonergic regulation of cortical/subcortical balance in OCD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Sensorimotor Learning of Acupuncture Needle Manipulation Using Visual Feedback.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Won-Mo Jung

    Full Text Available Humans can acquire a wide variety of motor skills using sensory feedback pertaining to discrepancies between intended and actual movements. Acupuncture needle manipulation involves sophisticated hand movements and represents a fundamental skill for acupuncturists. We investigated whether untrained students could improve their motor performance during acupuncture needle manipulation using visual feedback (VF.Twenty-one untrained medical students were included, randomly divided into concurrent (n = 10 and post-trial (n = 11 VF groups. Both groups were trained in simple lift/thrusting techniques during session 1, and in complicated lift/thrusting techniques in session 2 (eight training trials per session. We compared the motion patterns and error magnitudes of pre- and post-training tests.During motion pattern analysis, both the concurrent and post-trial VF groups exhibited greater improvements in motion patterns during the complicated lifting/thrusting session. In the magnitude error analysis, both groups also exhibited reduced error magnitudes during the simple lifting/thrusting session. For the training period, the concurrent VF group exhibited reduced error magnitudes across all training trials, whereas the post-trial VF group was characterized by greater error magnitudes during initial trials, which gradually reduced during later trials.Our findings suggest that novices can improve the sophisticated hand movements required for acupuncture needle manipulation using sensorimotor learning with VF. Use of two types of VF can be beneficial for untrained students in terms of learning how to manipulate acupuncture needles, using either automatic or cognitive processes.

  5. Balancing out dwelling and moving: optimal sensorimotor synchronization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girard, Benoît; Guigon, Emmanuel

    2015-01-01

    Sensorimotor synchronization is a fundamental skill involved in the performance of many artistic activities (e.g., music, dance). After a century of research, the manner in which the nervous system produces synchronized movements remains poorly understood. Typical rhythmic movements involve a motion and a motionless phase (dwell). The dwell phase represents a sizable fraction of the rhythm period, and scales with it. The rationale for this organization remains unexplained and is the object of this study. Twelve participants, four drummers (D) and eight nondrummers (ND), performed tapping movements paced at 0.5–2.5 Hz by a metronome. The participants organized their tapping behavior into dwell and movement phases according to two strategies: 1) Eight participants (1 D, 7 ND) maintained an almost constant ratio of movement time (MT) and dwell time (DT) irrespective of the metronome period. 2) Four participants increased the proportion of DT as the period increased. The temporal variabilities of both the dwell and movement phases were consistent with Weber's law, i.e., their variability increased with their durations, and the longest phase always exhibited the smallest variability. We developed an optimal statistical model that formalized the distribution of time into dwell and movement intervals as a function of their temporal variability. The model accurately predicted the participants' dwell and movement durations irrespective of their strategy and musical skill, strongly suggesting that the distribution of DT and MT results from an optimization process, dependent on each participant's skill to predict time during rest and movement. PMID:25878154

  6. The ADaptation and Anticipation Model (ADAM) of sensorimotor synchronization

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Steen, M. C. (Marieke); Keller, Peter E.

    2013-01-01

    A constantly changing environment requires precise yet flexible timing of movements. Sensorimotor synchronization (SMS)—the temporal coordination of an action with events in a predictable external rhythm—is a fundamental human skill that contributes to optimal sensory-motor control in daily life. A large body of research related to SMS has focused on adaptive error correction mechanisms that support the synchronization of periodic movements (e.g., finger taps) with events in regular pacing sequences. The results of recent studies additionally highlight the importance of anticipatory mechanisms that support temporal prediction in the context of SMS with sequences that contain tempo changes. To investigate the role of adaptation and anticipatory mechanisms in SMS we introduce ADAM: an ADaptation and Anticipation Model. ADAM combines reactive error correction processes (adaptation) with predictive temporal extrapolation processes (anticipation) inspired by the computational neuroscience concept of internal models. The combination of simulations and experimental manipulations based on ADAM creates a novel and promising approach for exploring adaptation and anticipation in SMS. The current paper describes the conceptual basis and architecture of ADAM. PMID:23772211

  7. Responsiveness of sensorimotor cortex during pharmacological intervention with bromazepam.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Marlo; Portela, Cláudio; Bastos, Victor H; Machado, Dionis; Machado, Sergio; Velasques, Bruna; Budde, Henning; Cagy, Maurício; Basile, Luis; Piedade, Roberto; Ribeiro, Pedro

    2008-12-19

    The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of bromazepam on EEG and the motor learning process when healthy subjects were submitted to a typewriting task. We investigated bromazepam due to its abuse by various populations and its prevalent clinical use among older individuals which are more sensitive to the negative effects of long half-life benzodiazepines. A randomized double-blind design was used with subjects divided into three groups: placebo (n=13), bromazepam 3mg (n=13) and bromazepam 6 mg (n=13). EEG data comprising theta, alpha and beta bands was recorded before, during and after the motor task. Our results showed a lower relative power value in the theta band in the Br 6 mg group when compared with PL. We also observed a reduction in relative power in the beta band in the Br 3mg and Br 6 mg when compared with PL group. These findings suggest that Br can contribute to a reduced working memory load in areas related to attention processes. On the other hand, it produces a higher cortical activation in areas associated with sensory integration. Such areas are responsible for accomplishing the motor learning task. The results are an example of the usefulness of integrating electrophysiological data, sensorimotor activity and a pharmacological approach to aid in our understanding of cerebral changes produced by external agents.

  8. Mina: A Sensorimotor Robotic Orthosis for Mobility Assistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anil K. Raj

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available While most mobility options for persons with paraplegia or paraparesis employ wheeled solutions, significant adverse health, psychological, and social consequences result from wheelchair confinement. Modern robotic exoskeleton devices for gait assistance and rehabilitation, however, can support legged locomotion systems for those with lower extremity weakness or paralysis. The Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC has developed the Mina, a prototype sensorimotor robotic orthosis for mobility assistance that provides mobility capability for paraplegic and paraparetic users. This paper describes the initial concept, design goals, and methods of this wearable overground robotic mobility device, which uses compliant actuation to power the hip and knee joints. Paralyzed users can balance and walk using the device over level terrain with the assistance of forearm crutches employing a quadrupedal gait. We have initiated sensory substitution feedback mechanisms to augment user sensory perception of his or her lower extremities. Using this sensory feedback, we hypothesize that users will ambulate with a more natural, upright gait and will be able to directly control the gait parameters and respond to perturbations. This may allow bipedal (with minimal support gait in future prototypes.

  9. Grounding the meanings in sensorimotor behavior using reinforcement learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor eFarkaš

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The recent outburst of interest in cognitive developmental robotics is fueled by the ambition to propose ecologically plausible mechanisms of how, among other things, a learning agent/robot could ground linguistic meanings in its sensorimotor behaviour. Along this stream, we propose a model that allows the simulated iCub robot to learn the meanings of actions (point, touch and push oriented towards objects in robot's peripersonal space. In our experiments, the iCub learns to execute motor actions and comment on them. Architecturally, the model is composed of three neural-network-based modules that are trained in different ways. The first module, a two-layer perceptron, is trained by back-propagation to attend to the target position in the visual scene, given the low-level visual information and the feature-based target information. The second module, having the form of an actor-critic architecture, is the most distinguishing part of our model, and is trained by a continuous version of reinforcement learning to execute actions as sequences, based on a linguistic command. The third module, an echo-state network, is trained to provide the linguistic description of the executed actions. The trained model generalises well in case of novel action-target combinations with randomised initial arm positions. It can also promptly adapt its behavior if the action/target suddenly changes during motor execution.

  10. Financial incentives enhance adaptation to a sensorimotor transformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gajda, Kathrin; Sülzenbrück, Sandra; Heuer, Herbert

    2016-10-01

    Adaptation to sensorimotor transformations has received much attention in recent years. However, the role of motivation and its relation to the implicit and explicit processes underlying adaptation has been neglected thus far. Here, we examine the influence of extrinsic motivation on adaptation to a visuomotor rotation by way of providing financial incentives for accurate movements. Participants in the experimental group "bonus" received a defined amount of money for high end-point accuracy in a visuomotor rotation task; participants in the control group "no bonus" did not receive a financial incentive. Results showed better overall adaptation to the visuomotor transformation in participants who were extrinsically motivated. However, there was no beneficial effect of financial incentives on the implicit component, as assessed by the after-effects, and on separately assessed explicit knowledge. These findings suggest that the positive influence of financial incentives on adaptation is due to a component which cannot be measured by after-effects or by our test of explicit knowledge. A likely candidate is model-free learning based on reward-prediction errors, which could be enhanced by the financial bonuses.

  11. Contribution of cerebellar sensorimotor adaptation to hippocampal spatial memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Baptiste Passot

    Full Text Available Complementing its primary role in motor control, cerebellar learning has also a bottom-up influence on cognitive functions, where high-level representations build up from elementary sensorimotor memories. In this paper we examine the cerebellar contribution to both procedural and declarative components of spatial cognition. To do so, we model a functional interplay between the cerebellum and the hippocampal formation during goal-oriented navigation. We reinterpret and complete existing genetic behavioural observations by means of quantitative accounts that cross-link synaptic plasticity mechanisms, single cell and population coding properties, and behavioural responses. In contrast to earlier hypotheses positing only a purely procedural impact of cerebellar adaptation deficits, our results suggest a cerebellar involvement in high-level aspects of behaviour. In particular, we propose that cerebellar learning mechanisms may influence hippocampal place fields, by contributing to the path integration process. Our simulations predict differences in place-cell discharge properties between normal mice and L7-PKCI mutant mice lacking long-term depression at cerebellar parallel fibre-Purkinje cell synapses. On the behavioural level, these results suggest that, by influencing the accuracy of hippocampal spatial codes, cerebellar deficits may impact the exploration-exploitation balance during spatial navigation.

  12. Multimodal sensorimotor system in unicellular zoospores of a fungus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swafford, Andrew J M; Oakley, Todd H

    2018-01-19

    Complex sensory systems often underlie critical behaviors, including avoiding predators and locating prey, mates and shelter. Multisensory systems that control motor behavior even appear in unicellular eukaryotes, such as Chlamydomonas , which are important laboratory models for sensory biology. However, we know of no unicellular opisthokonts that control motor behavior using a multimodal sensory system. Therefore, existing single-celled models for multimodal sensorimotor integration are very distantly related to animals. Here, we describe a multisensory system that controls the motor function of unicellular fungal zoospores. We found that zoospores of Allomyces arbusculus exhibit both phototaxis and chemotaxis. Furthermore, we report that closely related Allomyces species respond to either the chemical or the light stimuli presented in this study, not both, and likely do not share this multisensory system. This diversity of sensory systems within Allomyces provides a rare example of a comparative framework that can be used to examine the evolution of sensory systems following the gain/loss of available sensory modalities. The tractability of Allomyces and related fungi as laboratory organisms will facilitate detailed mechanistic investigations into the genetic underpinnings of novel photosensory systems, and how multisensory systems may have functioned in early opisthokonts before multicellularity allowed for the evolution of specialized cell types. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  13. Sensorimotor memory of object weight distribution during multidigit grasp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, Frederic; Santello, Marco; Gordon, Andrew M

    2009-10-09

    We studied the ability to transfer three-digit force sharing patterns learned through consecutive lifts of an object with an asymmetric center of mass (CM). After several object lifts, we asked subjects to rotate and translate the object to the contralateral hand and perform one additional lift. This task was performed under two weight conditions (550 and 950 g) to determine the extent to which subjects would be able to transfer weight and CM information. Learning transfer was quantified by measuring the extent to which force sharing patterns and peak object roll on the first post-translation trial resembled those measured on the pre-translation trial with the same CM. We found that the overall gain of fingertip forces was transferred following object rotation, but that the scaling of individual digit forces was specific to the learned digit-object configuration, and thus was not transferred following rotation. As a result, on the first post-translation trial there was a significantly larger object roll following object lift-off than on the pre-translation trial. This suggests that sensorimotor memories for weight, requiring scaling of fingertip force gain, may differ from memories for mass distribution.

  14. Acquisition of automatic imitation is sensitive to sensorimotor contingency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Richard; Press, Clare; Dickinson, Anthony; Heyes, Cecilia

    2010-08-01

    The associative sequence learning model proposes that the development of the mirror system depends on the same mechanisms of associative learning that mediate Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning. To test this model, two experiments used the reduction of automatic imitation through incompatible sensorimotor training to assess whether mirror system plasticity is sensitive to contingency (i.e., the extent to which activation of one representation predicts activation of another). In Experiment 1, residual automatic imitation was measured following incompatible training in which the action stimulus was a perfect predictor of the response (contingent) or not at all predictive of the response (noncontingent). A contingency effect was observed: There was less automatic imitation indicative of more learning in the contingent group. Experiment 2 replicated this contingency effect and showed that, as predicted by associative learning theory, it can be abolished by signaling trials in which the response occurs in the absence of an action stimulus. These findings support the view that mirror system development depends on associative learning and indicate that this learning is not purely Hebbian. If this is correct, associative learning theory could be used to explain, predict, and intervene in mirror system development.

  15. From sensorimotor inhibition to Freudian repression: insights from psychosis applied to neurosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariane eBazan

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available First, three case studies are presented of psychotic patients having in common an inability to hold something down or out. In line with other theories on psychosis, we propose that a key change is at the efference copy system. Going back to Freud’s mental apparatus, we propose that the messages of discharge of the motor neurones, mobilised to direct perception, also called indications of reality, are equivalent to the modern efference copies. With this key, the reading of the cases is coherent with the psychodynamic understanding of psychosis, being a downplay of secondary processes, and consequently, a dominance of primary processes. Moreover, putting together the sensorimotor idea of a failure of efference copy-mediated inhibition with the psychoanalytic idea of a failing repression in psychosis, the hypothesis emerges that the attenuation enabled by the efference copy dynamics is, in some instances, the physiological instantiation of repression. Second, we applied this idea to the mental organisation in neurosis. Indeed, the efference copy-mediated attenuation is thought to be the mechanism through which sustained activation of an intention, without reaching it – i.e. inhibition of an action – gives rise to mental imagery. Therefore, as inhibition is needed for any targeted action or for normal language understanding, acting in the world or processing language structurally induces mental imagery, constituting a subjective unconscious mental reality. Repression is a special instance of inhibition for emotionally threatening stimuli. These stimuli require stronger inhibition, leaving (the attenuation of the motor intentions totally unanswered, in order to radically prevent execution which would lead to development of excess affect. This inhibition, then, yields a specific type of motor imagery, called phantoms, which induce mental preoccupation, as well as symptoms which, especially through their form, refer to the repressed motor

  16. Prefrontal, posterior parietal and sensorimotor network activity underlying speed control during walking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas C Bulea

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Accumulating evidence suggests cortical circuits may contribute to control of human locomotion. Here, noninvasive electroencephalography (EEG recorded from able-bodied volunteers during a novel treadmill walking paradigm was used to assess neural correlates of walking. A systematic processing method, including a recently developed subspace reconstruction algorithm, reduced movement-related EEG artifact prior to independent component analysis and dipole source localization. We quantified cortical activity while participants tracked slow and fast target speeds across two treadmill conditions: an active mode that adjusted belt speed based on user movements and a passive mode reflecting a typical treadmill. Our results reveal frequency specific, multi-focal task related changes in cortical oscillations elicited by active walking. Low γ band power, localized to the prefrontal and posterior parietal cortices, was significantly increased during double support and early swing phases, critical points in the gait cycle since the active controller adjusted speed based on pelvis position and swing foot velocity. These phasic γ band synchronizations provide evidence that prefrontal and posterior parietal networks, previously implicated in visuo-spatial and somotosensory integration, are engaged to enhance lower limb control during gait. Sustained μ and β band desynchronization within sensorimotor cortex, a neural correlate for movement, was observed during walking thereby validating our methods for isolating cortical activity. Our results also demonstrate the utility of EEG recorded during locomotion for probing the multi-regional cortical networks which underpin its execution. For example, the cortical network engagement elicited by the active treadmill suggests that it may enhance neuroplasticity for more effective motor training.

  17. Post-Movement Beta Activity in Sensorimotor Cortex Indexes Confidence in the Estimations from Internal Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Huiling; Wade, Cian; Brown, Peter

    2016-02-03

    Beta oscillations are a dominant feature of the sensorimotor system. A transient and prominent increase in beta oscillations is consistently observed across the sensorimotor cortical-basal ganglia network after cessation of voluntary movement: the post-movement beta synchronization (PMBS). Current theories about the function of the PMBS have been focused on either the closure of motor response or the processing of sensory afferance. Computational models of sensorimotor control have emphasized the importance of the integration between feedforward estimation and sensory feedback, and therefore the putative motor and sensory functions of beta oscillations may reciprocally interact with each other and in fact be indissociable. Here we show that the amplitude of sensorimotor PMBS is modulated by the history of visual feedback of task-relevant errors, and negatively correlated with the trial-to-trial exploratory adjustment in a sensorimotor adaptation task in young healthy human subjects. The PMBS also negatively correlated with the uncertainty associated with the feedforward estimation, which was recursively updated in light of new sensory feedback, as identified by a Bayesian learning model. These results reconcile the two opposing motor and sensory views of the function of PMBS, and suggest a unifying theory in which PMBS indexes the confidence in internal feedforward estimation in Bayesian sensorimotor integration. Its amplitude simultaneously reflects cortical sensory processing and signals the need for maintenance or adaptation of the motor output, and if necessary, exploration to identify an altered sensorimotor transformation. For optimal sensorimotor control, sensory feedback and feedforward estimation of a movement's sensory consequences should be weighted by the inverse of their corresponding uncertainties, which require recursive updating in a dynamic environment. We show that post-movement beta activity (13-30 Hz) over sensorimotor cortex in young healthy

  18. Grassland Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deborah U. Potter; Paulette L. Ford

    2004-01-01

    In this chapter we discuss grassland sustainability in the Southwest, grassland management for sustainability, national and local criteria and indicators of sustainable grassland ecosystems, and monitoring for sustainability at various scales. Ecological sustainability is defined as: [T]he maintenance or restoration of the composition, structure, and processes of...

  19. Impaired Driving

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Get the Facts What Works: Strategies to Increase Car Seat and Booster Seat ... narcotics. 3 That’s one percent of the 111 million self-reported episodes of alcohol-impaired driving among U.S. ...

  20. Sensorimotor learning biases choice behavior: a learning neural field model for decision making.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Klaes

    Full Text Available According to a prominent view of sensorimotor processing in primates, selection and specification of possible actions are not sequential operations. Rather, a decision for an action emerges from competition between different movement plans, which are specified and selected in parallel. For action choices which are based on ambiguous sensory input, the frontoparietal sensorimotor areas are considered part of the common underlying neural substrate for selection and specification of action. These areas have been shown capable of encoding alternative spatial motor goals in parallel during movement planning, and show signatures of competitive value-based selection among these goals. Since the same network is also involved in learning sensorimotor associations, competitive action selection (decision making should not only be driven by the sensory evidence and expected reward in favor of either action, but also by the subject's learning history of different sensorimotor associations. Previous computational models of competitive neural decision making used predefined associations between sensory input and corresponding motor output. Such hard-wiring does not allow modeling of how decisions are influenced by sensorimotor learning or by changing reward contingencies. We present a dynamic neural field model which learns arbitrary sensorimotor associations with a reward-driven Hebbian learning algorithm. We show that the model accurately simulates the dynamics of action selection with different reward contingencies, as observed in monkey cortical recordings, and that it correctly predicted the pattern of choice errors in a control experiment. With our adaptive model we demonstrate how network plasticity, which is required for association learning and adaptation to new reward contingencies, can influence choice behavior. The field model provides an integrated and dynamic account for the operations of sensorimotor integration, working memory and action

  1. Graph theoretical model of a sensorimotor connectome in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stobb, Michael; Peterson, Joshua M; Mazzag, Borbala; Gahtan, Ethan

    2012-01-01

    Mapping the detailed connectivity patterns (connectomes) of neural circuits is a central goal of neuroscience. The best quantitative approach to analyzing connectome data is still unclear but graph theory has been used with success. We present a graph theoretical model of the posterior lateral line sensorimotor pathway in zebrafish. The model includes 2,616 neurons and 167,114 synaptic connections. Model neurons represent known cell types in zebrafish larvae, and connections were set stochastically following rules based on biological literature. Thus, our model is a uniquely detailed computational representation of a vertebrate connectome. The connectome has low overall connection density, with 2.45% of all possible connections, a value within the physiological range. We used graph theoretical tools to compare the zebrafish connectome graph to small-world, random and structured random graphs of the same size. For each type of graph, 100 randomly generated instantiations were considered. Degree distribution (the number of connections per neuron) varied more in the zebrafish graph than in same size graphs with less biological detail. There was high local clustering and a short average path length between nodes, implying a small-world structure similar to other neural connectomes and complex networks. The graph was found not to be scale-free, in agreement with some other neural connectomes. An experimental lesion was performed that targeted three model brain neurons, including the Mauthner neuron, known to control fast escape turns. The lesion decreased the number of short paths between sensory and motor neurons analogous to the behavioral effects of the same lesion in zebrafish. This model is expandable and can be used to organize and interpret a growing database of information on the zebrafish connectome.

  2. The impact of sensorimotor experience on affective evaluation of dance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise eKirsch

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Past research demonstrates that we are more likely to positively evaluate a stimulus if we have had previous experience with that stimulus. This has been shown for judgement of faces, architecture, artworks and body movements. In contrast, other evidence suggests that this relationship can also work in the inverse direction, at least in the domain of watching dance. Specifically, it has been shown that in certain contexts, people derive greater pleasure from watching unfamiliar movements they would not be able to physically reproduce compared to simpler, familiar actions they could physically reproduce. It remains unknown, however, how different kinds of experience with complex actions, such as dance, might change observers’ affective judgements of these movements. Our aim was to clarify the relationship between experience and affective evaluation of whole body movements. In a between-subjects design, participants received either physical dance training with a video game system, visual and auditory experience or auditory experience only. Participants’ aesthetic preferences for dance stimuli were measured before and after the training sessions. Results show that participants from the physical training group not only improved their physical performance of the dance sequences, but also reported higher enjoyment and interest in the stimuli after training. This suggests that physically learning particular movements leads to greater enjoyment while observing them. These effects are not simply due to increased familiarity with audio or visual elements of the stimuli, as the other two training groups showed no increase in aesthetic ratings post-training. We suggest these results support an embodied simulation account of aesthetics, and discuss how the present findings contribute to a better understanding of the shaping of preferences by sensorimotor experience.

  3. Remodeling of Sensorimotor Brain Connectivity in Gpr88-Deficient Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arefin, Tanzil Mahmud; Mechling, Anna E; Meirsman, Aura Carole; Bienert, Thomas; Hübner, Neele Saskia; Lee, Hsu-Lei; Ben Hamida, Sami; Ehrlich, Aliza; Roquet, Dan; Hennig, Jürgen; von Elverfeldt, Dominik; Kieffer, Brigitte Lina; Harsan, Laura-Adela

    2017-10-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that orchestrated gene activity and expression support synchronous activity of brain networks. However, there is a paucity of information on the consequences of single gene function on overall brain functional organization and connectivity and how this translates at the behavioral level. In this study, we combined mouse mutagenesis with functional and structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine whether targeted inactivation of a single gene would modify whole-brain connectivity in live animals. The targeted gene encodes GPR88 (G protein-coupled receptor 88), an orphan G protein-coupled receptor enriched in the striatum and previously linked to behavioral traits relevant to neuropsychiatric disorders. Connectivity analysis of Gpr88-deficient mice revealed extensive remodeling of intracortical and cortico-subcortical networks. Most prominent modifications were observed at the level of retrosplenial cortex connectivity, central to the default mode network (DMN) whose alteration is considered a hallmark of many psychiatric conditions. Next, somatosensory and motor cortical networks were most affected. These modifications directly relate to sensorimotor gating deficiency reported in mutant animals and also likely underlie their hyperactivity phenotype. Finally, we identified alterations within hippocampal and dorsal striatum functional connectivity, most relevant to a specific learning deficit that we previously reported in Gpr88 -/- animals. In addition, amygdala connectivity with cortex and striatum was weakened, perhaps underlying the risk-taking behavior of these animals. This is the first evidence demonstrating that GPR88 activity shapes the mouse brain functional and structural connectome. The concordance between connectivity alterations and behavior deficits observed in Gpr88-deficient mice suggests a role for GPR88 in brain communication.

  4. Ultrasonic vocalizations, predictability and sensorimotor gating in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webber, Emily S; Mankin, David E; McGraw, Justin J; Beckwith, Travis J; Cromwell, Howard C

    2013-09-15

    Prepulse inhibition (PPI) is a measure of sensorimotor gating in diverse groups of animals including humans. Emotional states can influence PPI in humans both in typical subjects and in individuals with mental illness. Little is known about emotional regulation during PPI in rodents. We used ultrasonic vocalization recording to monitor emotional states in rats during PPI testing. We altered the predictability of the PPI trials to examine any alterations in gating and emotional regulation. We also examined PPI in animals selectively bred for high or low levels of 50kHz USV emission. Rats emitted high levels of 22kHz calls consistently throughout the PPI session. USVs were sensitive to prepulses during the PPI session similar to startle. USV rate was sensitive to predictability among the different levels tested and across repeated experiences. Startle and inhibition of startle were not affected by predictability in a similar manner. No significant differences for PPI or startle were found related to the different levels of predictability; however, there was a reduction in USV signals and an enhancement of PPI after repeated exposure. Animals selectively bred to emit high levels of USVs emitted significantly higher levels of USVs during the PPI session and a reduced ASR compared to the low and random selective lines. Overall, the results support the idea that PPI tests in rodents induce high levels of negative affect and that manipulating emotional styles of the animals alters the negative impact of the gating session as well as the intensity of the startle response. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Graph theoretical model of a sensorimotor connectome in zebrafish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Stobb

    Full Text Available Mapping the detailed connectivity patterns (connectomes of neural circuits is a central goal of neuroscience. The best quantitative approach to analyzing connectome data is still unclear but graph theory has been used with success. We present a graph theoretical model of the posterior lateral line sensorimotor pathway in zebrafish. The model includes 2,616 neurons and 167,114 synaptic connections. Model neurons represent known cell types in zebrafish larvae, and connections were set stochastically following rules based on biological literature. Thus, our model is a uniquely detailed computational representation of a vertebrate connectome. The connectome has low overall connection density, with 2.45% of all possible connections, a value within the physiological range. We used graph theoretical tools to compare the zebrafish connectome graph to small-world, random and structured random graphs of the same size. For each type of graph, 100 randomly generated instantiations were considered. Degree distribution (the number of connections per neuron varied more in the zebrafish graph than in same size graphs with less biological detail. There was high local clustering and a short average path length between nodes, implying a small-world structure similar to other neural connectomes and complex networks. The graph was found not to be scale-free, in agreement with some other neural connectomes. An experimental lesion was performed that targeted three model brain neurons, including the Mauthner neuron, known to control fast escape turns. The lesion decreased the number of short paths between sensory and motor neurons analogous to the behavioral effects of the same lesion in zebrafish. This model is expandable and can be used to organize and interpret a growing database of information on the zebrafish connectome.

  6. Encoding of temporal intervals in the rat hindlimb sensorimotor cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Bean Knudsen

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The gradual buildup of neural activity over experimentally imposed delay periods, termed climbing activity, is well documented and is a potential mechanism by which interval time is encoded by distributed cortico-thalamico-striatal networks in the brain. Additionally, when multiple delay periods are incorporated, this activity has been shown to scale its rate of climbing proportional to the delay period. However, it remains unclear whether these patterns of activity occur within areas of motor cortex dedicated to hindlimb movement. Moreover, the effects of behavioral training (e.g. motor tasks under different reward conditions but with similar behavioral output are not well addressed. To address this, we recorded activity from the hindlimb sensorimotor cortex (HLSMC of two groups of rats performing a skilled hindlimb press task. In one group, rats were trained only to a make a valid press within a finite window after cue presentation for reward (non-interval trained, nIT; n=5, while rats in the second group were given duration-specific cues in which they had to make presses of either short or long duration to receive reward (interval trained, IT; n=6. Using PETH analyses, we show that cells recorded from both groups showed climbing activity during the task in similar proportions (35% IT and 47% nIT, however only climbing activity from IT rats was temporally scaled to press duration. Furthermore, using single trial decoding techniques (Wiener filter, we show that press duration can be inferred using climbing activity from IT animals (R=0.61 significantly better than nIT animals (R=0.507, p<0.01, suggesting IT animals encode press duration through temporally scaled climbing activity. Thus, if temporal intervals are behaviorally relevant then the activity of climbing neurons is temporally scaled to encode the passage of time.

  7. Repetitive Neonatal Erythropoietin and Melatonin Combinatorial Treatment Provides Sustained Repair of Functional Deficits in a Rat Model of Cerebral Palsy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren L. Jantzie

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Cerebral palsy (CP is the leading cause of motor impairment for children worldwide and results from perinatal brain injury (PBI. To test novel therapeutics to mitigate deficits from PBI, we developed a rat model of extreme preterm birth (<28 weeks of gestation that mimics dual intrauterine injury from placental underperfusion and chorioamnionitis. We hypothesized that a sustained postnatal treatment regimen that combines the endogenous neuroreparative agents erythropoietin (EPO and melatonin (MLT would mitigate molecular, sensorimotor, and cognitive abnormalities in adults rats following prenatal injury. On embryonic day 18 (E18, a laparotomy was performed in pregnant Sprague–Dawley rats. Uterine artery occlusion was performed for 60 min to induce placental insufficiency via transient systemic hypoxia-ischemia, followed by intra-amniotic injections of lipopolysaccharide, and laparotomy closure. On postnatal day 1 (P1, approximately equivalent to 30 weeks of gestation, injured rats were randomized to an extended EPO + MLT treatment regimen, or vehicle (sterile saline from P1 to P10. Behavioral assays were performed along an extended developmental time course (n = 6–29. Open field testing shows injured rats exhibit hypermobility and disinhibition and that combined neonatal EPO + MLT treatment repairs disinhibition in injured rats, while EPO alone does not. Furthermore, EPO + MLT normalizes hindlimb deficits, including reduced paw area and paw pressure at peak stance, and elevated percent shared stance after prenatal injury. Injured rats had fewer social interactions than shams, and EPO + MLT normalized social drive. Touchscreen operant chamber testing of visual discrimination and reversal shows that EPO + MLT at least partially normalizes theses complex cognitive tasks. Together, these data indicate EPO + MLT can potentially repair multiple sensorimotor, cognitive, and behavioral realms following PBI, using

  8. Using virtual reality to augment perception, enhance sensorimotor adaptation, and change our minds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, W Geoffrey

    2014-01-01

    Technological advances that involve human sensorimotor processes can have both intended and unintended effects on the central nervous system (CNS). This mini review focuses on the use of virtual environments (VE) to augment brain functions by enhancing perception, eliciting automatic motor behavior, and inducing sensorimotor adaptation. VE technology is becoming increasingly prevalent in medical rehabilitation, training simulators, gaming, and entertainment. Although these VE applications have often been shown to optimize outcomes, whether it be to speed recovery, reduce training time, or enhance immersion and enjoyment, there are inherent drawbacks to environments that can potentially change sensorimotor calibration. Across numerous VE studies over the years, we have investigated the effects of combining visual and physical motion on perception, motor control, and adaptation. Recent results from our research involving exposure to dynamic passive motion within a visually-depicted VE reveal that short-term exposure to augmented sensorimotor discordance can result in systematic aftereffects that last beyond the exposure period. Whether these adaptations are advantageous or not, remains to be seen. Benefits as well as risks of using VE-driven sensorimotor stimulation to enhance brain processes will be discussed.

  9. Using virtual reality to augment perception, enhance sensorimotor adaptation, and change our minds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Geoffrey Wright

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Technological advances that involve human sensorimotor processes can have both intended and unintended effects on the central nervous system (CNS. This mini-review focuses on the use of virtual environments (VE to augment brain functions by enhancing perception, eliciting automatic motor behavior, and inducing sensorimotor adaptation. VE technology is becoming increasingly prevalent in medical rehabilitation, training simulators, gaming, and entertainment. Although these VE applications have often been shown to optimize outcomes, whether it be to speed recovery, reduce training time, or enhance immersion and enjoyment, there are inherent drawbacks to environments that can potentially change sensorimotor calibration. Across numerous VE studies over the years, we have investigated the effects of combining visual and physical motion on perception, motor control, and adaptation. Recent results from our research involving exposure to dynamic passive motion within a visually-depicted VE reveal that short-term exposure to augmented sensorimotor discordance can result in systematic aftereffects that last beyond the exposure period. Whether these adaptations are advantageous or not, remains to be seen. Benefits as well as risks of using VE-driven sensorimotor stimulation to enhance brain processes will be discussed.

  10. Sensorimotor integration and psychopathology: motor control abnormalities related to psychiatric disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velasques, Bruna; Machado, Sergio; Paes, Flávia; Cunha, Marlo; Sanfim, Antonio; Budde, Henning; Cagy, Mauricio; Anghinah, Renato; Basile, Luis F; Piedade, Roberto; Ribeiro, Pedro

    2011-12-01

    Recent evidence is reviewed to examine relationships among sensorimotor and cognitive aspects in some important psychiatry disorders. This study reviews the theoretical models in the context of sensorimotor integration and the abnormalities reported in the most common psychiatric disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, autism spectrum disorder and squizophrenia. The bibliographical search used Pubmed/Medline, ISI Web of Knowledge, Cochrane data base and Scielo databases. The terms chosen for the search were: Alzheimer's disease, AD, autism spectrum disorder, and Squizophrenia in combination with sensorimotor integration. Fifty articles published in English and were selected conducted from 1989 up to 2010. We found that the sensorimotor integration process plays a relevant role in elementary mechanisms involved in occurrence of abnormalities in most common psychiatric disorders, participating in the acquisition of abilities that have as critical factor the coupling of different sensory data which will constitute the basis of elaboration of consciously goal-directed motor outputs. Whether these disorders are associated with an abnormal peripheral sensory input or defective central processing is still unclear, but some studies support a central mechanism. Sensorimotor integration seems to play a significant role in the disturbances of motor control, like deficits in the feedforward mechanism, typically seen in AD, autistic and squizophrenic patients.

  11. Beyond the sensorimotor plasticity: cognitive expansion of prism adaptation in healthy individuals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carine eMICHEL

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensorimotor plasticity allows us to maintain an efficient motor behavior in reaction to environmental changes. One of the classical models for the study of sensorimotor plasticity is prism adaptation. It consists of pointing to visual targets while wearing prismatic lenses that shift the visual field laterally. The conditions of the development of the plasticity and the sensorimotor after-effects have been extensively studied for more than a century. However, the interest taken in this phenomenon was considerably increased since the demonstration of neglect rehabilitation following prism adaptation by Rossetti and his colleagues in 1998. Mirror effects, i.e. simulation of neglect in healthy individuals, were observed for the first time by Colent and collaborators in 2000. The present review focuses on the expansion of prism adaptation to cognitive functions in healthy individuals during the last 15 years. Cognitive after-effects have been shown in numerous tasks even in those that are not intrinsically spatial in nature. Altogether, these results suggest the existence of a strong link between low-level sensorimotor plasticity and high-level cognitive functions and raise important questions about the mechanisms involved in producing unexpected cognitive effects following prism adaptation. Implications for the functional mechanisms and neuroanatomical network of prism adaptation are discussed to explain how sensorimotor plasticity may affect cognitive processes.

  12. Maturation of Sensori-Motor Functional Responses in the Preterm Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allievi, Alessandro G; Arichi, Tomoki; Tusor, Nora; Kimpton, Jessica; Arulkumaran, Sophie; Counsell, Serena J; Edwards, A David; Burdet, Etienne

    2016-01-01

    Preterm birth engenders an increased risk of conditions like cerebral palsy and therefore this time may be crucial for the brain's developing sensori-motor system. However, little is known about how cortical sensori-motor function matures at this time, whether development is influenced by experience, and about its role in spontaneous motor behavior. We aimed to systematically characterize spatial and temporal maturation of sensori-motor functional brain activity across this period using functional MRI and a custom-made robotic stimulation device. We studied 57 infants aged from 30 + 2 to 43 + 2 weeks postmenstrual age. Following both induced and spontaneous right wrist movements, we saw consistent positive blood oxygen level-dependent functional responses in the contralateral (left) primary somatosensory and motor cortices. In addition, we saw a maturational trend toward faster, higher amplitude, and more spatially dispersed functional responses; and increasing integration of the ipsilateral hemisphere and sensori-motor associative areas. We also found that interhemispheric functional connectivity was significantly related to ex-utero exposure, suggesting the influence of experience-dependent mechanisms. At term equivalent age, we saw a decrease in both response amplitude and interhemispheric functional connectivity, and an increase in spatial specificity, culminating in the establishment of a sensori-motor functional response similar to that seen in adults. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  13. Effects of Using the Nintendo Wii Fit Plus Platform in the Sensorimotor Training of Gait Disorders in Parkinson’s Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves, Giovanna Barros; Leite, Marco Antônio A.; Orsini, Marco; Pereira, João Santos

    2014-01-01

    The use of the Nintendo Wii has been considered a good alternative in the motor rehabilitation of individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD), requiring simultaneous interaction to develop strategies for physical, visual, auditory, cognitive, psychological and social activities in the performing of virtual activities, resulting in improvement in functional performance and gait. The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of virtual sensorimotor activity on gait disorders in people with PD. Fifteen subjects with a clinical diagnosis of PD were submitted to the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS III), Schwab and England Activities of Daily Living Scale (SE), Functional Independence Measure (FIM), and biomechanical gait analysis using digital images taken with a video camera before and after the treatment program. The activities with the Nintendo Wii virtual platform were standardized into three categories: aerobics, balance and Wii plus exercises. Participants carried out separate virtual exercises for 40 min, twice a week, for a total of 14 sessions. The program improved sensorimotor performance in PD gait, with an increase in stride length and gait speed, in addition to a reduction in motor impairment, especially in items of rigidity and flexibility of the lower limbs evaluated by UPDRS III, and greater functional independence, as evidenced in the SE and FIM scales. Improvements in items related to locomotion and stair climbing were also observed. The training was effective in motor recovery in chronic neurodegenerative diseases, showing improvement in motor performance and functional independence in individuals with PD. PMID:24744845

  14. Effects of using the Nintendo Wii Fit Plus Platform in the sensorimotor training of gait disorders in Parkinson’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanna Barros Gonçalves

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of the Nintendo Wii has been considered a good alternative in the motor rehabilitation of individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD, requiring simultaneous interaction to develop strategies for physical, visual, auditory, cognitive, psychological and social activities in the performing of virtual activities, resulting in improvement in functional performance and gait. The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of virtual sensorimotor activity on gait disorders in people with PD. Fifteen subjects with a clinical diagnosis of PD were submitted to the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS III, Schwab and England Activities of Daily Living Scale (SE, Functional Independence Measure (FIM, and biomechanical gait analysis using digital images taken with a video camera before and after the treatment program. The activities with the Nintendo Wii virtual platform were standardized into three categories: aerobics, balance and Wii plus exercises. Participants carried out separate virtual exercises for 40 min, twice a week, for a total of 14 sessions. The program improved sensorimotor performance in PD gait, with an increase in stride length and gait speed, in addition to a reduction in motor impairment, especially in items of rigidity and flexibility of the lower limbs evaluated by UPDRS III, and greater functional independence, as evidenced in the SE and FIM scales. Improvements in items related to locomotion and stair climbing were also observed. The training was effective in motor recovery in chronic neurodegenerative diseases, showing improvement in motor performance and functional independence in individuals with PD.

  15. Physical Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trewin, Shari

    Many health conditions can lead to physical impairments that impact computer and Web access. Musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis and cumulative trauma disorders can make movement stiff and painful. Movement disorders such as tremor, Parkinsonism and dystonia affect the ability to control movement, or to prevent unwanted movements. Often, the same underlying health condition also has sensory or cognitive effects. People with dexterity impairments may use a standard keyboard and mouse, or any of a wide range of alternative input mechanisms. Examples are given of the diverse ways that specific dexterity impairments and input mechanisms affect the fundamental actions of Web browsing. As the Web becomes increasingly sophisticated, and physically demanding, new access features at the Web browser and page level will be necessary.

  16. Progress in sensorimotor rehabilitative physical therapy programs for stroke patients

    OpenAIRE

    Chen, Jia-Ching; Shaw, Fu-Zen

    2014-01-01

    Impaired motor and functional activity following stroke often has negative impacts on the patient, the family and society. The available rehabilitation programs for stroke patients are reviewed. Conventional rehabilitation strategies (Bobath, Brunnstrom, proprioception neuromuscular facilitation, motor relearning and function-based principles) are the mainstream tactics in clinical practices. Numerous advanced strategies for sensory-motor functional enhancement, including electrical stimulati...

  17. Sustainable Food & Sustainable Economics

    OpenAIRE

    Alvarez, Mavis Dora

    2012-01-01

    Cuba today is immersed in a very intense process of perfecting its agricultural production structures with the goal of making them more efficient and sustainable in their economic administration and in their social and environmental management. Agricultural cooperatives in Cuba have the responsibility of producing on 73% of the country's farmland. Their contributions are decisive to developing agricultural production and to ensuring more and better food for the population, in addition to redu...

  18. Sensorimotor control and neuromuscular activity of the shoulder in adolescent competitive swimmers with generalized joint hypermobility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frydendal, Thomas; Eshøj, Henrik; Liaghat, Behnam

    2018-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Shoulder pain is highly prevalent in competitive swimmers, and generalized joint hypermobility (GJH) is considered a risk factor. Sensorimotor control deficiencies and altered neuromuscular activation of the shoulder may represent underlying factors. RESEARCH QUESTION: To investigate...... whether competitive swimmers with GJH including shoulder hypermobility (GJHS) differ in shoulder sensorimotor control and muscle activity from those without GJH and no shoulder hypermobility (NGJH). METHODS: Competitive swimmers (aged 13-17) were recruited. GJHS or NGJH status was determined using...... (29%) pectoralis major activity during BL-EO compared to NGJH (5.35 ± 1.77%MVE vs. 7.51 ± 1.96%MVE; p = 0.043). SIGNIFICANCE: Adolescent competitive swimmers with GJHS displayed no shoulder sensorimotor control deficiencies and no generally altered shoulder muscle activity pattern, except...

  19. The effect of action video game playing on sensorimotor learning: Evidence from a movement tracking task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gozli, Davood G; Bavelier, Daphne; Pratt, Jay

    2014-10-12

    Research on the impact of action video game playing has revealed performance advantages on a wide range of perceptual and cognitive tasks. It is not known, however, if playing such games confers similar advantages in sensorimotor learning. To address this issue, the present study used a manual motion-tracking task that allowed for a sensitive measure of both accuracy and improvement over time. When the target motion pattern was consistent over trials, gamers improved with a faster rate and eventually outperformed non-gamers. Performance between the two groups, however, did not differ initially. When the target motion was inconsistent, changing on every trial, results revealed no difference between gamers and non-gamers. Together, our findings suggest that video game playing confers no reliable benefit in sensorimotor control, but it does enhance sensorimotor learning, enabling superior performance in tasks with consistent and predictable structure. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  20. Sensorimotor Gating in Neurotensin-1 Receptor Null Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feifel, D.; Pang, Z.; Shilling, P.D.; Melendez, G.; Schreiber, R.; Button, D.

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND Converging evidence has implicated endogenous neurotensin (NT) in the pathophysiology of brain processes relevant to schizophrenia. Prepulse inhibition of the startle reflex (PPI) is a measure of sensorimotor gating and considered to be of strong relevance to neuropsychiatric disorders associated with psychosis and cognitive dysfunction. Mice genetically engineered to not express NT display deficits in PPI that model the PPI deficits seen in schizophrenia patients. NT1 receptors have been most strongly implicated in mediating the psychosis relevant effects of NT such as attenuating PPI deficits. To investigate the role of NT1 receptors in the regulation of PPI, we measured baseline PPI in wildtype (WT) and NT1 knockout (KO) mice. We also tested the effects of amphetamine and dizocilpine, a dopamine agonist and NMDA antagonist, respectively, that reduce PPI as well as the NT1 selective receptor agonist, PD149163, known to increase PPI in rats. METHODS Baseline PPI and acoustic startle response were measured in WT and NT1 knockout KO mice. After baseline testing, mice were tested again after receiving intraperatoneal (IP) saline or one of three doses of amphetamine (1.0, 3.0 and 10.0 mg/kg), dizocilpine (0.3, 1.0 and 3.0 mg/kg) and PD149163 (0.5, 2.0 and 6.0 mg/kg) on separate test days. RESULTS Baseline PPI and acoustic startle response in NT1 KO mice were not significantly different from NT1 WT mice. WT and KO mice exhibited similar responses to the PPI-disrupting effects of dizocilpine and amphetamine. PD149163 significantly facilitated PPI (P < 0.004) and decreased the acoustic startle response (P < 0.001) in WT but not NT1 KO mice. CONCLUSIONS The data does not support the regulation of baseline PPI or the PPI disruptive effects of amphetamine or dizocilpine by endogenous NT acting at the NT1 receptor, although they support the antipsychotic potential of pharmacological activation of NT1 receptors by NT1 agonists. PMID:19596359

  1. Does the sensorimotor system minimize prediction error or select the most likely prediction during object lifting?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGregor, Heather R.; Pun, Henry C. H.; Buckingham, Gavin; Gribble, Paul L.

    2016-01-01

    The human sensorimotor system is routinely capable of making accurate predictions about an object's weight, which allows for energetically efficient lifts and prevents objects from being dropped. Often, however, poor predictions arise when the weight of an object can vary and sensory cues about object weight are sparse (e.g., picking up an opaque water bottle). The question arises, what strategies does the sensorimotor system use to make weight predictions when one is dealing with an object whose weight may vary? For example, does the sensorimotor system use a strategy that minimizes prediction error (minimal squared error) or one that selects the weight that is most likely to be correct (maximum a posteriori)? In this study we dissociated the predictions of these two strategies by having participants lift an object whose weight varied according to a skewed probability distribution. We found, using a small range of weight uncertainty, that four indexes of sensorimotor prediction (grip force rate, grip force, load force rate, and load force) were consistent with a feedforward strategy that minimizes the square of prediction errors. These findings match research in the visuomotor system, suggesting parallels in underlying processes. We interpret our findings within a Bayesian framework and discuss the potential benefits of using a minimal squared error strategy. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Using a novel experimental model of object lifting, we tested whether the sensorimotor system models the weight of objects by minimizing lifting errors or by selecting the statistically most likely weight. We found that the sensorimotor system minimizes the square of prediction errors for object lifting. This parallels the results of studies that investigated visually guided reaching, suggesting an overlap in the underlying mechanisms between tasks that involve different sensory systems. PMID:27760821

  2. Advantages of comparative studies in songbirds to understand the neural basis of sensorimotor integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Karagh; James, Logan S; Sakata, Jon T; Prather, Jonathan F

    2017-08-01

    Sensorimotor integration is the process through which the nervous system creates a link between motor commands and associated sensory feedback. This process allows for the acquisition and refinement of many behaviors, including learned communication behaviors such as speech and birdsong. Consequently, it is important to understand fundamental mechanisms of sensorimotor integration, and comparative analyses of this process can provide vital insight. Songbirds offer a powerful comparative model system to study how the nervous system links motor and sensory information for learning and control. This is because the acquisition, maintenance, and control of birdsong critically depend on sensory feedback. Furthermore, there is an incredible diversity of song organizations across songbird species, ranging from songs with simple, stereotyped sequences to songs with complex sequencing of vocal gestures, as well as a wide diversity of song repertoire sizes. Despite this diversity, the neural circuitry for song learning, control, and maintenance remains highly similar across species. Here, we highlight the utility of songbirds for the analysis of sensorimotor integration and the insights about mechanisms of sensorimotor integration gained by comparing different songbird species. Key conclusions from this comparative analysis are that variation in song sequence complexity seems to covary with the strength of feedback signals in sensorimotor circuits and that sensorimotor circuits contain distinct representations of elements in the vocal repertoire, possibly enabling evolutionary variation in repertoire sizes. We conclude our review by highlighting important areas of research that could benefit from increased comparative focus, with particular emphasis on the integration of new technologies. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  3. Learning New Sensorimotor Contingencies: Effects of Long-Term Use of Sensory Augmentation on the Brain and Conscious Perception

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    König, Sabine U.; Schumann, Frank; Keyser, Johannes; Goeke, Caspar; Krause, Carina; Wache, Susan; Lytochkin, Aleksey; Ebert, Manuel; Brunsch, Vincent; Wahn, Basil; Kaspar, Kai; Nagel, Saskia K.; Nagel, Saskia Kathi; Meilinger, Tobias; Bülthoff, Heinrich; Wolbers, Thomas; Büchel, Christian; König, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Theories of embodied cognition propose that perception is shaped by sensory stimuli and by the actions of the organism. Following sensorimotor contingency theory, the mastery of lawful relations between own behavior and resulting changes in sensory signals, called sensorimotor contingencies, is

  4. Test-retest reliability of the Battery for the Assessment of Auditory Sensorimotor and Timing Abilities (BAASTA)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bégel, Valentin; Verga, Laura; Benoit, Charles-Etienne; Kotz, Sonja A; Bella, Simone Dalla

    2018-01-01

    Perceptual and sensorimotor timing skills can be comprehensively assessed with the Battery for the Assessment of Auditory Sensorimotor and Timing Abilities (BAASTA). The battery has been used for testing rhythmic skills in healthy adults and patient populations (e.g., with Parkinson disease),

  5. Keep your options open: an information-based driving principle for sensorimotor systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander S Klyubin

    Full Text Available The central resource processed by the sensorimotor system of an organism is information. We propose an information-based quantity that allows one to characterize the efficiency of the perception-action loop of an abstract organism model. It measures the potential of the organism to imprint information on the environment via its actuators in a way that can be recaptured by its sensors, essentially quantifying the options available and visible to the organism. Various scenarios suggest that such a quantity could identify the preferred direction of evolution or adaptation of the sensorimotor loop of organisms.

  6. Functional Task Test: 1. Sensorimotor changes Associated with Postflight Alterations in Astronaut Functional Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Arzeno, N. H.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Miller, C. A.; Mulavara, A. P.; Platts, S. H.; Peters, B. T.; hide

    2011-01-01

    Space flight is known to cause alterations in multiple physiological systems including changes in sensorimotor, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular systems. These changes may affect a crewmember s ability to perform critical mission tasks immediately after landing on a planetary surface. The overall goal of this project is to determine the effects of space flight on functional tests that are representative of high priority exploration mission tasks and to identify the key underlying physiological factors that contribute to decrements in performance. This presentation will focus on the sensorimotor contributions to postflight functional performance.

  7. Physical and neural entrainment to rhythm: human sensorimotor coordination across tasks and effector systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Marie Ross

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The human sensorimotor system can be readily entrained to environmental rhythms, through multiple sensory modalities. In this review, we provide an overview of theories of timekeeping that make this neuroentrainment possible. First, we present recent evidence that contests the assumptions made in classic timekeeper models. The role of state estimation, sensory feedback and movement parameters on the organization of sensorimotor timing are discussed in the context of recent experiments that examined simultaneous timing and force control. This discussion is extended to the study of coordinated multi-effector movements and how they may be entrained.

  8. Plasticity in the sensorimotor cortex induced by Music-supported therapy in stroke patients: a TMS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grau-Sánchez, Jennifer; Amengual, Julià L; Rojo, Nuria; Veciana de Las Heras, Misericordia; Montero, Jordi; Rubio, Francisco; Altenmüller, Eckart; Münte, Thomas F; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni

    2013-01-01

    Playing a musical instrument demands the engagement of different neural systems. Recent studies about the musician's brain and musical training highlight that this activity requires the close interaction between motor and somatosensory systems. Moreover, neuroplastic changes have been reported in motor-related areas after short and long-term musical training. Because of its capacity to promote neuroplastic changes, music has been used in the context of stroke neurorehabilitation. The majority of patients suffering from a stroke have motor impairments, preventing them to live independently. Thus, there is an increasing demand for effective restorative interventions for neurological deficits. Music-supported Therapy (MST) has been recently developed to restore motor deficits. We report data of a selected sample of stroke patients who have been enrolled in a MST program (1 month intense music learning). Prior to and after the therapy, patients were evaluated with different behavioral motor tests. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) was applied to evaluate changes in the sensorimotor representations underlying the motor gains observed. Several parameters of excitability of the motor cortex were assessed as well as the cortical somatotopic representation of a muscle in the affected hand. Our results revealed that participants obtained significant motor improvements in the paretic hand and those changes were accompanied by changes in the excitability of the motor cortex. Thus, MST leads to neuroplastic changes in the motor cortex of stroke patients which may explain its efficacy.

  9. Plasticity in the sensorimotor cortex induced by Music-supported therapy in stroke patients: A TMS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer eGrau-Sánchez

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Playing a musical instrument demands the engagement of different neural systems. Recent studies about the musician’s brain and musical training highlight that this activity requires the close interaction between motor and somatosensory systems. Moreover, neuroplastic changes have been reported in motor-related areas after short and long-term musical training. Because of its capacity to promote neuroplastic changes, music has been used in the context of stroke neurorehabilitation. The majority of patients suffering from a stroke have motor impairments, preventing them to live independently. Thus, there is an increasing demand for effective restorative interventions for neurological deficits. Music-supported Therapy (MST has been recently developed to restore motor deficits. We report data of a selected sample of stroke patients who have been enrolled in a MST program (1 month intense music learning. Prior to and after the therapy, patients were evaluated with different behavioral motor tests. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS was applied to evaluate changes in the sensorimotor representations underlying the motor gains observed. Several parameters of excitability of the motor cortex were assessed as well as the cortical somatotopic representation of a muscle in the affected hand. Our results revealed that participants obtained significant motor improvements in the paretic hand and those changes were accompanied by changes in the excitability of the motor cortex. Thus, MST leads to neuroplastic changes in the motor cortex of stroke patients which may explain its efficacy.

  10. Self-Administered, Home-Based SMART (Sensorimotor Active Rehabilitation Training) Arm Training: A Single-Case Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayward, Kathryn S; Neibling, Bridee A; Barker, Ruth N

    2015-01-01

    This single-case, mixed-method study explored the feasibility of self-administered, home-based SMART (sensorimotor active rehabilitation training) Arm training for a 57-yr-old man with severe upper-limb disability after a right frontoparietal hemorrhagic stroke 9 mo earlier. Over 4 wk of self-administered, home-based SMART Arm training, the participant completed 2,100 repetitions unassisted. His wife provided support for equipment set-up and training progressions. Clinically meaningful improvements in arm impairment (strength), activity (arm and hand tasks), and participation (use of arm in everyday tasks) occurred after training (at 4 wk) and at follow-up (at 16 wk). Areas for refinement of SMART Arm training derived from thematic analysis of the participant's and researchers' journals focused on enabling independence, ensuring home and user friendliness, maintaining the motivation to persevere, progressing toward everyday tasks, and integrating practice into daily routine. These findings suggest that further investigation of self-administered, home-based SMART Arm training is warranted for people with stroke who have severe upper-limb disability. Copyright © 2015 by the American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.

  11. Interhemispheric disconnectivity in the sensorimotor network in bipolar disorder revealed by functional connectivity and diffusion tensor imaging analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takuya Ishida

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Little is known regarding interhemispheric functional connectivity (FC abnormalities via the corpus callosum in subjects with bipolar disorder (BD, which might be a key pathophysiological basis of emotional processing alterations in BD. Methods: We performed tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI in 24 healthy control (HC and 22 BD subjects. Next, we analyzed the neural networks with independent component analysis (ICA in 32HC and 25 BD subjects using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Results: In TBSS analysis, we found reduced fractional anisotropy (FA in the corpus callosum of BD subjects. In ICA, functional within-connectivity was reduced in two clusters in the sensorimotor network (SMN (right and left primary somatosensory areas of BD subjects compared with HCs. FC between the two clusters and FA values in the corpus callosum of BD subjects was significantly correlated. Further, the functional within-connectivity was related to Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS total scores in the right premotor area in the SMN of BD subjects. Limitations: Almost all of our BD subjects were taking several medications which could be a confounding factor. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that interhemispheric FC dysfunction in the SMN is associated with the impaired nerve fibers in the corpus callosum, which could be one of pathophysiological bases of emotion processing dysregulation in BD patients. Keywords: Neuroscience, Medical imaging, Psychiatry

  12. Mapping of the brain hemodynamic responses to sensorimotor stimulation in a rodent model: A BOLD fMRI study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salem Boussida

    Full Text Available Blood Oxygenation Level Dependent functional MRI (BOLD fMRI during electrical paw stimulation has been widely used in studies aimed at the understanding of the somatosensory network in rats. However, despite the well-established anatomical connections between cortical and subcortical structures of the sensorimotor system, most of these functional studies have been concentrated on the cortical effects of sensory electrical stimulation. BOLD fMRI study of the integration of a sensorimotor input across the sensorimotor network requires an appropriate methodology to elicit functional activation in cortical and subcortical areas owing to the regional differences in both neuronal and vascular architectures between these brain regions. Here, using a combination of low level anesthesia, long pulse duration of the electrical stimulation along with improved spatial and temporal signal to noise ratios, we provide a functional description of the main cortical and subcortical structures of the sensorimotor rat brain. With this calibrated fMRI protocol, unilateral non-noxious sensorimotor electrical hindpaw stimulation resulted in robust positive activations in the contralateral sensorimotor cortex and bilaterally in the sensorimotor thalamus nuclei, whereas negative activations were observed bilaterally in the dorsolateral caudate-putamen. These results demonstrate that, once the experimental setup allowing necessary spatial and temporal signal to noise ratios is reached, hemodynamic changes related to neuronal activity, as preserved by the combination of a soft anesthesia with a soft muscle relaxation, can be measured within the sensorimotor network. Moreover, the observed responses suggest that increasing pulse duration of the electrical stimulus adds a proprioceptive component to the sensory input that activates sensorimotor network in the brain, and that these activation patterns are similar to those induced by digits paw's movements. These findings may

  13. A predictive processing theory of sensorimotor contingencies: Explaining the puzzle of perceptual presence and its absence in synesthesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seth, Anil K

    2014-01-01

    Normal perception involves experiencing objects within perceptual scenes as real, as existing in the world. This property of "perceptual presence" has motivated "sensorimotor theories" which understand perception to involve the mastery of sensorimotor contingencies. However, the mechanistic basis of sensorimotor contingencies and their mastery has remained unclear. Sensorimotor theory also struggles to explain instances of perception, such as synesthesia, that appear to lack perceptual presence and for which relevant sensorimotor contingencies are difficult to identify. On alternative "predictive processing" theories, perceptual content emerges from probabilistic inference on the external causes of sensory signals, however, this view has addressed neither the problem of perceptual presence nor synesthesia. Here, I describe a theory of predictive perception of sensorimotor contingencies which (1) accounts for perceptual presence in normal perception, as well as its absence in synesthesia, and (2) operationalizes the notion of sensorimotor contingencies and their mastery. The core idea is that generative models underlying perception incorporate explicitly counterfactual elements related to how sensory inputs would change on the basis of a broad repertoire of possible actions, even if those actions are not performed. These "counterfactually-rich" generative models encode sensorimotor contingencies related to repertoires of sensorimotor dependencies, with counterfactual richness determining the degree of perceptual presence associated with a stimulus. While the generative models underlying normal perception are typically counterfactually rich (reflecting a large repertoire of possible sensorimotor dependencies), those underlying synesthetic concurrents are hypothesized to be counterfactually poor. In addition to accounting for the phenomenology of synesthesia, the theory naturally accommodates phenomenological differences between a range of experiential states

  14. Genetic Mapping in Mice Reveals the Involvement of Pcdh9 in Long-Term Social and Object Recognition and Sensorimotor Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruining, Hilgo; Matsui, Asuka; Oguro-Ando, Asami; Kahn, René S; Van't Spijker, Heleen M; Akkermans, Guus; Stiedl, Oliver; van Engeland, Herman; Koopmans, Bastijn; van Lith, Hein A; Oppelaar, Hugo; Tieland, Liselotte; Nonkes, Lourens J; Yagi, Takeshi; Kaneko, Ryosuke; Burbach, J Peter H; Yamamoto, Nobuhiko; Kas, Martien J

    2015-10-01

    Quantitative genetic analysis of basic mouse behaviors is a powerful tool to identify novel genetic phenotypes contributing to neurobehavioral disorders. Here, we analyzed genetic contributions to single-trial, long-term social and nonsocial recognition and subsequently studied the functional impact of an identified candidate gene on behavioral development. Genetic mapping of single-trial social recognition was performed in chromosome substitution strains, a sophisticated tool for detecting quantitative trait loci (QTL) of complex traits. Follow-up occurred by generating and testing knockout (KO) mice of a selected QTL candidate gene. Functional characterization of these mice was performed through behavioral and neurological assessments across developmental stages and analyses of gene expression and brain morphology. Chromosome substitution strain 14 mapping studies revealed an overlapping QTL related to long-term social and object recognition harboring Pcdh9, a cell-adhesion gene previously associated with autism spectrum disorder. Specific long-term social and object recognition deficits were confirmed in homozygous (KO) Pcdh9-deficient mice, while heterozygous mice only showed long-term social recognition impairment. The recognition deficits in KO mice were not associated with alterations in perception, multi-trial discrimination learning, sociability, behavioral flexibility, or fear memory. Rather, KO mice showed additional impairments in sensorimotor development reflected by early touch-evoked biting, rotarod performance, and sensory gating deficits. This profile emerged with structural changes in deep layers of sensory cortices, where Pcdh9 is selectively expressed. This behavior-to-gene study implicates Pcdh9 in cognitive functions required for long-term social and nonsocial recognition. This role is supported by the involvement of Pcdh9 in sensory cortex development and sensorimotor phenotypes. Copyright © 2015 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published

  15. Translation and cultural validation of clinical observational scales - the Fugl-Meyer assessment for post stroke sensorimotor function in Colombian Spanish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbosa, Nubia E; Forero, Sandra M; Galeano, Claudia P; Hernández, Edgar D; Landinez, Nancy S; Sunnerhagen, Katharina S; Alt Murphy, Margit

    2018-04-24

    Fugl-Meyer Assessment (FMA) is the most widely used and recommended clinical scale for evaluation of sensorimotor impairment post stroke, but an official Spanish version is not available today. This study aimed to establish methodological structure for translation and cultural adaptation process and perform a transcultural validation of the upper and lower extremity FMA to Colombian Spanish. Procedures included forward and backward translation, step-wise reviewing by bilingual and professional experts to ensure conceptual and semantic equivalence. Validation included a pilot evaluation of item-level agreement on 10 individuals with stroke at the Central Military Hospital of Colombia. Comprehensive step-wise procedure for transcultural validation was established. Low agreement (less than 70%) was detected for items assessing arm movements within synergies and for coordination/speed subscale. All points of disagreement were systematically reviewed and agreed upon when drafting the final version of the Spanish FMA. Use of FMA will allow unified description of stroke severity and motor recovery in Spanish speaking countries. This will open up possibility to compare stroke and rehabilitation outcomes with other countries and regions world-wide. Comprehensive methodological procedures provided can facilitate introduction of well-established clinical scales in other languages. Implications for Rehabilitation The Fugl-Meyer Assessment (FMA) of upper and lower extremity is the most used and recommended clinical scale for evaluation of sensorimotor impairment after stroke. The Spanish version of FMA, validated in this study, is now first time available for use in research and clinical practice. Use of FMA will allow unified description of stroke severity and motor recovery in Spanish speaking countries, which in turn opens up possibility to compare stroke and rehabilitation outcomes with other countries and regions world-wide.

  16. The D1CT-7 mouse model of Tourette syndrome displays sensorimotor gating deficits in response to spatial confinement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godar, Sean C; Mosher, Laura J; Strathman, Hunter J; Gochi, Andrea M; Jones, Cori M; Fowler, Stephen C; Bortolato, Marco

    2016-07-01

    The D1CT-7 mouse is one of the best known animal models of Tourette syndrome (TS), featuring spontaneous tic-like behaviours sensitive to standard TS therapies; these characteristics ensure a high face and predictive validity of this model, yet its construct validity remains elusive. To address this issue, we studied the responses of D1CT-7 mice to two critical components of TS pathophysiology: the exacerbation of tic-like behaviours in response to stress and the presence of sensorimotor gating deficits, which are thought to reflect the perceptual alterations causing the tics. D1CT-7 and wild-type (WT) littermates were subjected to a 20 min session of spatial confinement (SC) within an inescapable, 10 cm wide cylindrical enclosure. Changes in plasma corticosterone levels, tic-like behaviours and other spontaneous responses were measured. SC-exposed mice were also tested for the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the startle response (a sensorimotor gating index) and other TS-related behaviours, including open-field locomotion, novel object exploration and social interaction and compared with non-confined counterparts. SC produced a marked increase in corticosterone concentrations in both D1CT-7 and WT mice. In D1CT-7, but not WT mice, SC exacerbated tic-like and digging behaviours, and triggered PPI deficits and aggressive responses. Conversely, SC did not modify locomotor activity or novel object exploration in D1CT-7 mice. Both tic-like behaviours and PPI impairments in SC-exposed D1CT-7 mice were inhibited by standard TS therapies and D1 dopamine receptor antagonism. These findings collectively support the translational and construct validity of D1CT-7 mice with respect to TS. This article is part of a themed section on Updating Neuropathology and Neuropharmacology of Monoaminergic Systems. To view the other articles in this section visit http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bph.v173.13/issuetoc. © 2015 The British Pharmacological Society.

  17. Counting on the mental number line to make a move: Sensorimotor ('pen') control and numerical processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sheridan, R.; Rooijen, M. van; Giles, O.; Mushtaq, F.; Steenbergen, B.; Mon-Williams, M.; Waterman, A.H.

    2017-01-01

    Mathematics is often conducted with a writing implement. But is there a relationship between numerical processing and sensorimotor 'pen' control? We asked participants to move a stylus so it crossed an unmarked line at a location specified by a symbolic number (1-9), where number colour indicated

  18. Sensorimotor Distractions When Learning with Mobile Phones On-the-Move

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellano, Soledad; Arnedillo-Sánchez, Inmaculada

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents a discussion on potential conflicts originated by sensorimotor distractions when learning with mobile phones on-the-move. While research in mobile learning points to the possibility of everywhere, all the time learning; research in the area suggests that tasks performed while on-the-move predominantly require low cognitive…

  19. Increased connectivity between sensorimotor and attentional areas in Parkinson's disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Onu, Mihaela; Badea, Liviu; Roceanu, Adina; Bajenaru, Ovidiu; Tivarus, Madalina

    2015-01-01

    Our study is using Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to evaluate functional connectivity changes in Parkinson's disease (PD) in an unbiased manner. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data was collected for 27 PD patients and 16 healthy subjects. Differences for intra- and inter-network connectivity between healthy subjects and patients were investigated using FMRIB Software Library (FSL) tools (Melodic ICA, dual regression, FSLNets). Twenty-three ICA maps were identified as components of neuronal origin. For intra-network connectivity changes, eight components showed a significant connectivity increase in patients (p < 0.05); these were correlated with clinical scores and were largest for (sensori)motor networks. For inter-network connectivity changes, we found higher connectivity between the sensorimotor network and the spatial attention network (p = 0.0098) and lower connectivity between anterior and posterior default mode networks (DMN) (p = 0.024), anterior DMN and visual recognition networks (p = 0.026), as well as between visual attention and main dorsal attention networks (p = 0.03), for patients as compared to healthy subjects. The area under the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve for the best predictor (partial correlation between sensorimotor and spatial attention networks) was 0.772. These functional alterations were not associated with any gray or white matter structural changes. Our results show higher connectivity between sensorimotor and spatial attention areas in patients that may be related to the reduced movement automaticity in PD. (orig.)

  20. Motor Adaptation and Manual Transfer: Insight into the Persistent Nature of Sensorimotor Representations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Sharon; Grierson, Lawrence E. M.; Dubrowski, Adam; Carnahan, Heather

    2010-01-01

    It is well known that sensorimotor memories are built and updated through experience with objects. These representations are useful to anticipatory and feedforward control processes that preset grip and load forces during lifting. When individuals lift objects with qualities that are not congruent with their memory-derived expectations, feedback…

  1. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Alexandrov, A.V.; Lippi, V.; Mergner, T.; Frolov, A. A.; Hettich, G.; Húsek, Dušan

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 11, 25 April (2017), č. článku 22. ISSN 1662-5188 Institutional support: RVO:67985807 Keywords : human sensorimotor system * neuromechanics * biorobotics * motor control * eigenmovements Subject RIV: JD - Computer Applications, Robotics OBOR OECD: Robotics and automatic control Impact factor: 1.821, year: 2016

  2. Influence of spinal cord injury on cerebral sensorimotor systems : A PET study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roelcke, U; Curt, A; Otte, A; Missimer, J; Maguire, RP; Dietz, [No Value; Leenders, KL

    Objectives-To assess the effect of a transverse spinal cord lesion on cerebral energy metabolism in view of sensorimotor reorganisation. Methods-PET and F-18-fluorodeoxyglucose were used to study resting cerebral glucose metabolism in 11 patients with complete paraplegia or tetraplegia after spinal

  3. Increased connectivity between sensorimotor and attentional areas in Parkinson's disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Onu, Mihaela [Medical Imaging Department, Clinical Hospital ' ' Prof. Dr. Th. Burghele' ' , Bucharest (Romania); Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Biophysics, Bucharest (Romania); Badea, Liviu [National Institute for Research and Development in Informatics, Artificial Intelligence and Bioinformatics Group, Bucharest (Romania); Roceanu, Adina; Bajenaru, Ovidiu [University of Bucharest Emergency Hospital, Neurology Department, Bucharest (Romania); Tivarus, Madalina [University of Rochester Medical Center, Department of Imaging Sciences and Rochester Center for Brain Imaging, Rochester, NY (United States)

    2015-09-15

    Our study is using Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to evaluate functional connectivity changes in Parkinson's disease (PD) in an unbiased manner. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data was collected for 27 PD patients and 16 healthy subjects. Differences for intra- and inter-network connectivity between healthy subjects and patients were investigated using FMRIB Software Library (FSL) tools (Melodic ICA, dual regression, FSLNets). Twenty-three ICA maps were identified as components of neuronal origin. For intra-network connectivity changes, eight components showed a significant connectivity increase in patients (p < 0.05); these were correlated with clinical scores and were largest for (sensori)motor networks. For inter-network connectivity changes, we found higher connectivity between the sensorimotor network and the spatial attention network (p = 0.0098) and lower connectivity between anterior and posterior default mode networks (DMN) (p = 0.024), anterior DMN and visual recognition networks (p = 0.026), as well as between visual attention and main dorsal attention networks (p = 0.03), for patients as compared to healthy subjects. The area under the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve for the best predictor (partial correlation between sensorimotor and spatial attention networks) was 0.772. These functional alterations were not associated with any gray or white matter structural changes. Our results show higher connectivity between sensorimotor and spatial attention areas in patients that may be related to the reduced movement automaticity in PD. (orig.)

  4. Emotional-volitional components of operator reliability. [sensorimotor function testing under stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mileryan, Y. A.

    1975-01-01

    Sensorimotor function testing in a tracking task under stressfull working conditions established a psychological characterization for a successful aviation pilot: Motivation significantly increased the reliability and effectiveness of their work. Their acitivities were aimed at suppressing weariness and the feeling of fear caused by the stress factors; they showed patience, endurance, persistence, and a capacity for lengthy volitional efforts.

  5. The Influence of Gravito-Inertial Force on Sensorimotor Integration and Reflexive Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curthoys, Ian S.; Guedry, Fred E.; Merfeld, Daniel M.; Watt, Doug G. D.; Tomko, David L.; Wade, Charles E. (Technical Monitor)

    1994-01-01

    Sensorimotor responses (e.g.. eye movements, spinal reflexes, etc depend upon the interpretation of the neural signals from the sensory systems. Since neural signals from the otoliths may represent either tilt (gravity) or translation (linear inertial force), sensory signals from the otolith organs are necessarily somewhat ambiguous. Therefore. the neural responses to changing otolith signals depend upon the context of the stimulation (e.g- active vs. passive, relative orientation of gravity, etc.) as well as upon other sensory signals (e.g., vision. canals, etc.). This session will focus upon the -role -played by the sensory signals from the otolith organs in producing efficient sensorimotor and behavioral responses. Curthoys will show the influence of the peripheral anatomy and physiology. Tomko will discuss the influence of tilt and translational otolith signals on eye movements. Merfeld will demonstrate the rate otolith organs play during the interaction of sensory signals from the canals and otoliths. Watt will show the influence of the otoliths on spinal/postural responses. Guedry will discuss the contribution of vestibular information to "path of movement"' perception and to the development of a stable vertical reference. Sensorimotor responses to the ambiguous inertial force stimulation provide an important tool to investigate how the nervous system processes patterns of sensory information and yields functional sensorimotor responses.

  6. Explicit and Implicit Processes Constitute the Fast and Slow Processes of Sensorimotor Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougle, Samuel D; Bond, Krista M; Taylor, Jordan A

    2015-07-01

    A popular model of human sensorimotor learning suggests that a fast process and a slow process work in parallel to produce the canonical learning curve (Smith et al., 2006). Recent evidence supports the subdivision of sensorimotor learning into explicit and implicit processes that simultaneously subserve task performance (Taylor et al., 2014). We set out to test whether these two accounts of learning processes are homologous. Using a recently developed method to assay explicit and implicit learning directly in a sensorimotor task, along with a computational modeling analysis, we show that the fast process closely resembles explicit learning and the slow process approximates implicit learning. In addition, we provide evidence for a subdivision of the slow/implicit process into distinct manifestations of motor memory. We conclude that the two-state model of motor learning is a close approximation of sensorimotor learning, but it is unable to describe adequately the various implicit learning operations that forge the learning curve. Our results suggest that a wider net be cast in the search for the putative psychological mechanisms and neural substrates underlying the multiplicity of processes involved in motor learning. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/359568-12$15.00/0.

  7. Does (Non-)Meaningful Sensori-Motor Engagement Promote Learning With Animated Physical Systems?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pouw, Wim T J L; Eielts, Charly; van Gog, Tamara; Zwaan, Rolf A.; Paas, Fred

    2016-01-01

    Previous research indicates that sensori-motor experience with physical systems can have a positive effect on learning. However, it is not clear whether this effect is caused by mere bodily engagement or the intrinsically meaningful information that such interaction affords in performing the

  8. Altered contralateral sensorimotor system organization after experimental hemispherectomy: a structural and functional connectivity study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otte, Willem M; van der Marel, Kajo; van Meer, Maurits P A; van Rijen, Peter C; Gosselaar, Peter H; Braun, Kees P J; Dijkhuizen, Rick M

    2015-08-01

    Hemispherectomy is often followed by remarkable recovery of cognitive and motor functions. This reflects plastic capacities of the remaining hemisphere, involving large-scale structural and functional adaptations. Better understanding of these adaptations may (1) provide new insights in the neuronal configuration and rewiring that underlies sensorimotor outcome restoration, and (2) guide development of rehabilitation strategies to enhance recovery after hemispheric lesioning. We assessed brain structure and function in a hemispherectomy model. With MRI we mapped changes in white matter structural integrity and gray matter functional connectivity in eight hemispherectomized rats, compared with 12 controls. Behavioral testing involved sensorimotor performance scoring. Diffusion tensor imaging and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging were acquired 7 and 49 days post surgery. Hemispherectomy caused significant sensorimotor deficits that largely recovered within 2 weeks. During the recovery period, fractional anisotropy was maintained and white matter volume and axial diffusivity increased in the contralateral cerebral peduncle, suggestive of preserved or improved white matter integrity despite overall reduced white matter volume. This was accompanied by functional adaptations in the contralateral sensorimotor network. The observed white matter modifications and reorganization of functional network regions may provide handles for rehabilitation strategies improving functional recovery following large lesions.

  9. The posterior parietal cortex as integrative hub for whisker sensorimotor information

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mohan, Hemanth; de Haan, Roel; Mansvelder, Huibert D; de Kock, Christiaan P J

    2018-01-01

    Our daily life consists of a continuous interplay between incoming sensory information and outgoing motor plans. Particularly during goal-directed behavior and active exploration of the sensory environment, brain circuits are merging sensory and motor signals. This is referred to as sensorimotor

  10. Shutting down sensorimotor interference unblocks the networks for stimulus processing: an SMR neurofeedback training study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kober, Silvia Erika; Witte, Matthias; Stangl, Matthias; Väljamäe, Aleksander; Neuper, Christa; Wood, Guilherme

    2015-01-01

    In the present study, we investigated how the electrical activity in the sensorimotor cortex contributes to improved cognitive processing capabilities and how SMR (sensorimotor rhythm, 12-15Hz) neurofeedback training modulates it. Previous evidence indicates that higher levels of SMR activity reduce sensorimotor interference and thereby promote cognitive processing. Participants were randomly assigned to two groups, one experimental (N=10) group receiving SMR neurofeedback training, in which they learned to voluntarily increase SMR, and one control group (N=10) receiving sham feedback. Multiple cognitive functions and electrophysiological correlates of cognitive processing were assessed before and after 10 neurofeedback training sessions. The experimental group but not the control group showed linear increases in SMR power over training runs, which was associated with behavioural improvements in memory and attentional performance. Additionally, increasing SMR led to a more salient stimulus processing as indicated by increased N1 and P3 event-related potential amplitudes after the training as compared to the pre-test. Finally, functional brain connectivity between motor areas and visual processing areas was reduced after SMR training indicating reduced sensorimotor interference. These results indicate that SMR neurofeedback improves stimulus processing capabilities and consequently leads to improvements in cognitive performance. The present findings contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying SMR neurofeedback training and cognitive processing and implicate that SMR neurofeedback might be an effective cognitive training tool. Copyright © 2014 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Picturing words? Sensorimotor cortex activation for printed words in child and adult readers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dekker, Tessa M.; Mareschal, Denis; Johnson, Mark H.; Sereno, Martin I.

    2014-01-01

    Learning to read involves associating abstract visual shapes with familiar meanings. Embodiment theories suggest that word meaning is at least partially represented in distributed sensorimotor networks in the brain (Barsalou, 2008; Pulvermueller, 2013). We explored how reading comprehension develops by tracking when and how printed words start activating these “semantic” sensorimotor representations as children learn to read. Adults and children aged 7–10 years showed clear category-specific cortical specialization for tool versus animal pictures during a one-back categorisation task. Thus, sensorimotor representations for these categories were in place at all ages. However, co-activation of these same brain regions by the visual objects’ written names was only present in adults, even though all children could read and comprehend all presented words, showed adult-like task performance, and older children were proficient readers. It thus takes years of training and expert reading skill before spontaneous processing of printed words’ sensorimotor meanings develops in childhood. PMID:25463817

  12. Sustainable Marketing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dam, van Y.K.

    2017-01-01

    In this article, three different conceptions of sustainable marketing are discussed and compared. These different conceptions are referred to as social, green, and critical sustainable marketing. Social sustainable marketing follows the logic of demand-driven marketing management and places the

  13. Non-concomitant cortical structural and functional alterations in sensorimotor areas following incomplete spinal cord injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Pan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Brain plasticity, including anatomical changes and functional reorganization, is the physiological basis of functional recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI. The correlation between brain anatomical changes and functional reorganization after SCI is unclear. This study aimed to explore whether alterations of cortical structure and network function are concomitant in sensorimotor areas after incomplete SCI. Eighteen patients with incomplete SCI (mean age 40.94 ± 14.10 years old; male:female, 7:11 and 18 healthy subjects (37.33 ± 11.79 years old; male:female, 7:11 were studied by resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Gray matter volume (GMV and functional connectivity were used to evaluate cortical structure and network function, respectively. There was no significant alteration of GMV in sensorimotor areas in patients with incomplete SCI compared with healthy subjects. Intra-hemispheric functional connectivity between left primary somatosensory cortex (BA1 and left primary motor cortex (BA4, and left BA1 and left somatosensory association cortex (BA5 was decreased, as well as inter-hemispheric functional connectivity between left BA1 and right BA4, left BA1 and right BA5, and left BA4 and right BA5 in patients with SCI. Functional connectivity between both BA4 areas was also decreased. The decreased functional connectivity between the left BA1 and the right BA4 positively correlated with American Spinal Injury Association sensory score in SCI patients. The results indicate that alterations of cortical anatomical structure and network functional connectivity in sensorimotor areas were non-concomitant in patients with incomplete SCI, indicating the network functional changes in sensorimotor areas may not be dependent on anatomic structure. The strength of functional connectivity within sensorimotor areas could serve as a potential imaging biomarker for assessment and prediction of sensory function in patients with incomplete SCI

  14. Hand-in-hand advances in biomedical engineering and sensorimotor restoration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisotta, Iolanda; Perruchoud, David; Ionta, Silvio

    2015-05-15

    Living in a multisensory world entails the continuous sensory processing of environmental information in order to enact appropriate motor routines. The interaction between our body and our brain is the crucial factor for achieving such sensorimotor integration ability. Several clinical conditions dramatically affect the constant body-brain exchange, but the latest developments in biomedical engineering provide promising solutions for overcoming this communication breakdown. The ultimate technological developments succeeded in transforming neuronal electrical activity into computational input for robotic devices, giving birth to the era of the so-called brain-machine interfaces. Combining rehabilitation robotics and experimental neuroscience the rise of brain-machine interfaces into clinical protocols provided the technological solution for bypassing the neural disconnection and restore sensorimotor function. Based on these advances, the recovery of sensorimotor functionality is progressively becoming a concrete reality. However, despite the success of several recent techniques, some open issues still need to be addressed. Typical interventions for sensorimotor deficits include pharmaceutical treatments and manual/robotic assistance in passive movements. These procedures achieve symptoms relief but their applicability to more severe disconnection pathologies is limited (e.g. spinal cord injury or amputation). Here we review how state-of-the-art solutions in biomedical engineering are continuously increasing expectances in sensorimotor rehabilitation, as well as the current challenges especially with regards to the translation of the signals from brain-machine interfaces into sensory feedback and the incorporation of brain-machine interfaces into daily activities. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Simple analytical model reveals the functional role of embodied sensorimotor interaction in hexapod gaits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoi, Shinya; Nachstedt, Timo; Manoonpong, Poramate; Wörgötter, Florentin; Matsuno, Fumitoshi

    2018-01-01

    Insects have various gaits with specific characteristics and can change their gaits smoothly in accordance with their speed. These gaits emerge from the embodied sensorimotor interactions that occur between the insect’s neural control and body dynamic systems through sensory feedback. Sensory feedback plays a critical role in coordinated movements such as locomotion, particularly in stick insects. While many previously developed insect models can generate different insect gaits, the functional role of embodied sensorimotor interactions in the interlimb coordination of insects remains unclear because of their complexity. In this study, we propose a simple physical model that is amenable to mathematical analysis to explain the functional role of these interactions clearly. We focus on a foot contact sensory feedback called phase resetting, which regulates leg retraction timing based on touchdown information. First, we used a hexapod robot to determine whether the distributed decoupled oscillators used for legs with the sensory feedback generate insect-like gaits through embodied sensorimotor interactions. The robot generated two different gaits and one had similar characteristics to insect gaits. Next, we proposed the simple model as a minimal model that allowed us to analyze and explain the gait mechanism through the embodied sensorimotor interactions. The simple model consists of a rigid body with massless springs acting as legs, where the legs are controlled using oscillator phases with phase resetting, and the governed equations are reduced such that they can be explained using only the oscillator phases with some approximations. This simplicity leads to analytical solutions for the hexapod gaits via perturbation analysis, despite the complexity of the embodied sensorimotor interactions. This is the first study to provide an analytical model for insect gaits under these interaction conditions. Our results clarified how this specific foot contact sensory

  16. Multimodal assessment of sensorimotor shoulder function in patients with untreated anterior shoulder instability and asymptomatic handball players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mornieux, Guillaume; Hirschmüller, Anja; Gollhofer, Albert; Südkamp, Norbert P; Maier, Dirk

    2018-04-01

    Functional evaluation of sensorimotor function of the shoulder joint is important for guidance of sports-specific training, prevention and rehabilitation of shoulder instability. Such assessment should be multimodal and comprise all qualities of sensorimotor shoulder function. This study evaluates feasibility of such multimodal assessment of glenohumeral sensorimotor function in patients with shoulder instability and handball players. Nine patients with untreated anterior instability of their dominant shoulder and 15 asymptomatic recreational handball players performed proprioceptive joint position sense and dynamic stabilization evaluations on an isokinetic device, as well as a functional throwing performance task. Outcome measures were analysed individually and equally weighted in a Shoulder-Specific Sensorimotor Index (S-SMI). Finally, isokinetic strength evaluations were conducted. We observed comparable sensorimotor functions of unstable dominant shoulders compared to healthy, contralateral shoulders (e.g. P=0.59 for S-SMI). Handball players demonstrated superior sensorimotor function of their dominant shoulders exhibiting a significantly higher throwing performance and S-SMI (P0.22). The present study proves feasibility of multimodal assessment of shoulder sensorimotor function in overhead athletes and patients with symptomatic anterior shoulder instability. Untreated shoulder instability led to a loss of dominance-related sensorimotor superiority indicating functional internal rotation deficiency. Dominant shoulders of handball players showed a superior overall sensorimotor function but weakness of dominant internal rotation constituting a risk factor for occurrence of posterior superior impingement syndrome. The S-SMI could serve as a diagnostic tool for guidance of sports-specific training, prevention and rehabilitation of shoulder instability.

  17. Visuo-manual tracking: does intermittent control with aperiodic sampling explain linear power and non-linear remnant without sensorimotor noise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gollee, Henrik; Gawthrop, Peter J; Lakie, Martin; Loram, Ian D

    2017-11-01

    A human controlling an external system is described most easily and conventionally as linearly and continuously translating sensory input to motor output, with the inevitable output remnant, non-linearly related to the input, attributed to sensorimotor noise. Recent experiments show sustained manual tracking involves repeated refractoriness (insensitivity to sensory information for a certain duration), with the temporary 200-500 ms periods of irresponsiveness to sensory input making the control process intrinsically non-linear. This evidence calls for re-examination of the extent to which random sensorimotor noise is required to explain the non-linear remnant. This investigation of manual tracking shows how the full motor output (linear component and remnant) can be explained mechanistically by aperiodic sampling triggered by prediction error thresholds. Whereas broadband physiological noise is general to all processes, aperiodic sampling is associated with sensorimotor decision making within specific frontal, striatal and parietal networks; we conclude that manual tracking utilises such slow serial decision making pathways up to several times per second. The human operator is described adequately by linear translation of sensory input to motor output. Motor output also always includes a non-linear remnant resulting from random sensorimotor noise from multiple sources, and non-linear input transformations, for example thresholds or refractory periods. Recent evidence showed that manual tracking incurs substantial, serial, refractoriness (insensitivity to sensory information of 350 and 550 ms for 1st and 2nd order systems respectively). Our two questions are: (i) What are the comparative merits of explaining the non-linear remnant using noise or non-linear transformations? (ii) Can non-linear transformations represent serial motor decision making within the sensorimotor feedback loop intrinsic to tracking? Twelve participants (instructed to act in three prescribed

  18. Sustainable Disruptions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Friis, Silje Alberthe Kamille; Kjær, Lykke Bloch

    2016-01-01

    Since 2012 the Sustainable Disruptions (SD) project at the Laboratory for Sustainability at Design School Kolding (DK) has developed and tested a set of design thinking tools, specifically targeting the barriers to economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable business development....... The tools have been applied in practice in collaboration with 11 small and medium sized companies (SMEs). The study investigates these approaches to further understand how design thinking can contribute to sustainable transition in a business context. The study and the findings are relevant to organizations...... invested in the issue of sustainable business development, in particular the leaders and employees of SMEs, but also to design education seeking new ways to consciously handle and teach the complexity inherent in sustainable transformation. Findings indicate that the SD design thinking approach contributes...

  19. Computational sustainability

    CERN Document Server

    Kersting, Kristian; Morik, Katharina

    2016-01-01

    The book at hand gives an overview of the state of the art research in Computational Sustainability as well as case studies of different application scenarios. This covers topics such as renewable energy supply, energy storage and e-mobility, efficiency in data centers and networks, sustainable food and water supply, sustainable health, industrial production and quality, etc. The book describes computational methods and possible application scenarios.

  20. Sustainable Universities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grindsted, Thomas Skou

    2011-01-01

    Declarations on Sustainability in Higher Education (SHE) can be viewed as a piece of international regulation. Over the past 30 years research at universities has produced convincing data to warn about deterioration of the environment, resource scarcity and the need for sustainability. This in turn....... Declarations tend to have impact on three trends. Firstly, there is emerging international consensus on the university’s role and function in relation to sustainable development; secondly, the emergence of national legislation, and thirdly, an emerging international competition to be leader in sustainable...

  1. Temporal Dynamics of Sensorimotor Networks in Effort-Based Cost-Benefit Valuation: Early Emergence and Late Net Value Integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Alison; Lim, Seung-Lark

    2016-07-06

    Although physical effort can impose significant costs on decision-making, when and how effort cost information is incorporated into choice remains contested, reflecting a larger debate over the role of sensorimotor networks in specifying behavior. Serial information processing models, in which motor circuits simply implement the output of cognitive systems, hypothesize that effort cost factors into decisions relatively late, via integration with stimulus values into net (combined) value signals in dorsomedial frontal cortex (dmFC). In contrast, ethology-inspired approaches suggest a more active role for the dorsal sensorimotor stream, with effort cost signals emerging rapidly after stimulus onset. Here we investigated the time course of effort cost integration using event-related potentials in hungry human subjects while they made decisions about expending physical effort for appetitive foods. Consistent with the ethological perspective, we found that effort cost was represented from as early as 100-250 ms after stimulus onset, localized to dorsal sensorimotor regions including middle cingulate, somatosensory, and motor/premotor cortices. However, examining the same data time-locked to motor output revealed net value signals combining stimulus value and effort cost approximately -400 ms before response, originating from sensorimotor areas including dmFC, precuneus, and posterior parietal cortex. Granger causal connectivity analysis of the motor effector signal in the time leading to response showed interactions between these sensorimotor regions and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, a structure associated with adjusting behavior-response mappings. These results suggest that rapid activation of sensorimotor regions interacts with cognitive valuation systems, producing a net value signal reflecting both physical effort and reward contingencies. Although physical effort imposes a cost on choice, when and how effort cost influences neural correlates of decision

  2. Learning New Sensorimotor Contingencies: Effects of Long-Term Use of Sensory Augmentation on the Brain and Conscious Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    König, Sabine U; Schumann, Frank; Keyser, Johannes; Goeke, Caspar; Krause, Carina; Wache, Susan; Lytochkin, Aleksey; Ebert, Manuel; Brunsch, Vincent; Wahn, Basil; Kaspar, Kai; Nagel, Saskia K; Meilinger, Tobias; Bülthoff, Heinrich; Wolbers, Thomas; Büchel, Christian; König, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Theories of embodied cognition propose that perception is shaped by sensory stimuli and by the actions of the organism. Following sensorimotor contingency theory, the mastery of lawful relations between own behavior and resulting changes in sensory signals, called sensorimotor contingencies, is constitutive of conscious perception. Sensorimotor contingency theory predicts that, after training, knowledge relating to new sensorimotor contingencies develops, leading to changes in the activation of sensorimotor systems, and concomitant changes in perception. In the present study, we spell out this hypothesis in detail and investigate whether it is possible to learn new sensorimotor contingencies by sensory augmentation. Specifically, we designed an fMRI compatible sensory augmentation device, the feelSpace belt, which gives orientation information about the direction of magnetic north via vibrotactile stimulation on the waist of participants. In a longitudinal study, participants trained with this belt for seven weeks in natural environment. Our EEG results indicate that training with the belt leads to changes in sleep architecture early in the training phase, compatible with the consolidation of procedural learning as well as increased sensorimotor processing and motor programming. The fMRI results suggest that training entails activity in sensory as well as higher motor centers and brain areas known to be involved in navigation. These neural changes are accompanied with changes in how space and the belt signal are perceived, as well as with increased trust in navigational ability. Thus, our data on physiological processes and subjective experiences are compatible with the hypothesis that new sensorimotor contingencies can be acquired using sensory augmentation.

  3. Learning New Sensorimotor Contingencies: Effects of Long-Term Use of Sensory Augmentation on the Brain and Conscious Perception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Frank; Keyser, Johannes; Goeke, Caspar; Krause, Carina; Wache, Susan; Lytochkin, Aleksey; Ebert, Manuel; Brunsch, Vincent; Wahn, Basil; Kaspar, Kai; Nagel, Saskia K.; Meilinger, Tobias; Bülthoff, Heinrich; Wolbers, Thomas; Büchel, Christian; König, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Theories of embodied cognition propose that perception is shaped by sensory stimuli and by the actions of the organism. Following sensorimotor contingency theory, the mastery of lawful relations between own behavior and resulting changes in sensory signals, called sensorimotor contingencies, is constitutive of conscious perception. Sensorimotor contingency theory predicts that, after training, knowledge relating to new sensorimotor contingencies develops, leading to changes in the activation of sensorimotor systems, and concomitant changes in perception. In the present study, we spell out this hypothesis in detail and investigate whether it is possible to learn new sensorimotor contingencies by sensory augmentation. Specifically, we designed an fMRI compatible sensory augmentation device, the feelSpace belt, which gives orientation information about the direction of magnetic north via vibrotactile stimulation on the waist of participants. In a longitudinal study, participants trained with this belt for seven weeks in natural environment. Our EEG results indicate that training with the belt leads to changes in sleep architecture early in the training phase, compatible with the consolidation of procedural learning as well as increased sensorimotor processing and motor programming. The fMRI results suggest that training entails activity in sensory as well as higher motor centers and brain areas known to be involved in navigation. These neural changes are accompanied with changes in how space and the belt signal are perceived, as well as with increased trust in navigational ability. Thus, our data on physiological processes and subjective experiences are compatible with the hypothesis that new sensorimotor contingencies can be acquired using sensory augmentation. PMID:27959914

  4. Learning New Sensorimotor Contingencies: Effects of Long-Term Use of Sensory Augmentation on the Brain and Conscious Perception.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine U König

    Full Text Available Theories of embodied cognition propose that perception is shaped by sensory stimuli and by the actions of the organism. Following sensorimotor contingency theory, the mastery of lawful relations between own behavior and resulting changes in sensory signals, called sensorimotor contingencies, is constitutive of conscious perception. Sensorimotor contingency theory predicts that, after training, knowledge relating to new sensorimotor contingencies develops, leading to changes in the activation of sensorimotor systems, and concomitant changes in perception. In the present study, we spell out this hypothesis in detail and investigate whether it is possible to learn new sensorimotor contingencies by sensory augmentation. Specifically, we designed an fMRI compatible sensory augmentation device, the feelSpace belt, which gives orientation information about the direction of magnetic north via vibrotactile stimulation on the waist of participants. In a longitudinal study, participants trained with this belt for seven weeks in natural environment. Our EEG results indicate that training with the belt leads to changes in sleep architecture early in the training phase, compatible with the consolidation of procedural learning as well as increased sensorimotor processing and motor programming. The fMRI results suggest that training entails activity in sensory as well as higher motor centers and brain areas known to be involved in navigation. These neural changes are accompanied with changes in how space and the belt signal are perceived, as well as with increased trust in navigational ability. Thus, our data on physiological processes and subjective experiences are compatible with the hypothesis that new sensorimotor contingencies can be acquired using sensory augmentation.

  5. An index of reservoir habitat impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, L.E.; Hunt, K.M.

    2011-01-01

    Fish habitat impairment resulting from natural and anthropogenic watershed and in-lake processes has in many cases reduced the ability of reservoirs to sustain native fish assemblages and fisheries quality. Rehabilitation of impaired reservoirs is hindered by the lack of a method suitable for scoring impairment status. To address this limitation, an index of reservoir habitat impairment (IRHI) was developed by merging 14 metrics descriptive of common impairment sources, with each metric scored from 0 (no impairment) to 5 (high impairment) by fisheries scientists with local knowledge. With a plausible range of 5 to 25, distribution of the IRHI scores ranged from 5 to 23 over 482 randomly selected reservoirs dispersed throughout the USA. The IRHI reflected five impairment factors including siltation, structural habitat, eutrophication, water regime, and aquatic plants. The factors were weakly related to key reservoir characteristics including reservoir area, depth, age, and usetype, suggesting that common reservoir descriptors are poor predictors of fish habitat impairment. The IRHI is rapid and inexpensive to calculate, provides an easily understood measure of the overall habitat impairment, allows comparison of reservoirs and therefore prioritization of restoration activities, and may be used to track restoration progress. The major limitation of the IRHI is its reliance on unstandardized professional judgment rather than standardized empirical measurements. ?? 2010 US Government.

  6. Strong systematicity through sensorimotor conceptual grounding: an unsupervised, developmental approach to connectionist sentence processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, Peter A.; Watter, Scott

    2012-03-01

    Connectionist language modelling typically has difficulty with syntactic systematicity, or the ability to generalise language learning to untrained sentences. This work develops an unsupervised connectionist model of infant grammar learning. Following the semantic boostrapping hypothesis, the network distils word category using a developmentally plausible infant-scale database of grounded sensorimotor conceptual representations, as well as a biologically plausible semantic co-occurrence activation function. The network then uses this knowledge to acquire an early benchmark clausal grammar using correlational learning, and further acquires separate conceptual and grammatical category representations. The network displays strongly systematic behaviour indicative of the general acquisition of the combinatorial systematicity present in the grounded infant-scale language stream, outperforms previous contemporary models that contain primarily noun and verb word categories, and successfully generalises broadly to novel untrained sensorimotor grounded sentences composed of unfamiliar nouns and verbs. Limitations as well as implications to later grammar learning are discussed.

  7. Closing the sensorimotor loop: haptic feedback facilitates decoding of motor imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez-Rodriguez, M.; Peters, J.; Hill, J.; Schölkopf, B.; Gharabaghi, A.; Grosse-Wentrup, M.

    2011-06-01

    The combination of brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) with robot-assisted physical therapy constitutes a promising approach to neurorehabilitation of patients with severe hemiparetic syndromes caused by cerebrovascular brain damage (e.g. stroke) and other neurological conditions. In such a scenario, a key aspect is how to reestablish the disrupted sensorimotor feedback loop. However, to date it is an open question how artificially closing the sensorimotor feedback loop influences the decoding performance of a BCI. In this paper, we answer this issue by studying six healthy subjects and two stroke patients. We present empirical evidence that haptic feedback, provided by a seven degrees of freedom robotic arm, facilitates online decoding of arm movement intention. The results support the feasibility of future rehabilitative treatments based on the combination of robot-assisted physical therapy with BCIs.

  8. Adaptive and Energy Efficient Walking in a Hexapod Robot under Neuromechanical Control and Sensorimotor Learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xiong, Xiaofeng; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2016-01-01

    The control of multilegged animal walking is a neuromechanical process, and to achieve this in an adaptive and energy efficient way is a difficult and challenging problem. This is due to the fact that this process needs in real time: 1) to coordinate very many degrees of freedom of jointed legs; 2......) to generate the proper leg stiffness (i.e., compliance); and 3) to determine joint angles that give rise to particular positions at the endpoints of the legs. To tackle this problem for a robotic application, here we present a neuromechanical controller coupled with sensorimotor learning. The controller...... energy efficient walking, compared to other small legged robots. In addition, this paper also shows that the tight combination of neural control with tunable muscle-like functions, guided by sensory feedback and coupled with sensorimotor learning, is a way forward to better understand and solve adaptive...

  9. Relationships Between Vestibular Measures as Potential Predictors for Spaceflight Sensorimotor Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, T. K.; Peters, B.; Gadd, N. E.; De Dios, Y. E.; Wood, S.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Mulavara, A. P.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: During space exploration missions astronauts are exposed to a series of novel sensorimotor environments, requiring sensorimotor adaptation. Until adaptation is complete, sensorimotor decrements occur, affecting critical tasks such as piloted landing or docking. Of particularly interest are locomotion tasks such as emergency vehicle egress or extra-vehicular activity. While nearly all astronauts eventually adapt sufficiently, it appears there are substantial individual differences in how quickly and effectively this adaptation occurs. These individual differences in capacity for sensorimotor adaptation are poorly understood. Broadly, we aim to identify measures that may serve as pre-flight predictors of and individual's adaptation capacity to spaceflight-induced sensorimotor changes. As a first step, since spaceflight is thought to involve a reinterpretation of graviceptor cues (e.g. otolith cues from the vestibular system) we investigate the relationships between various measures of vestibular function in humans. Methods: In a set of 15 ground-based control subjects, we quantified individual differences in vestibular function using three measures: 1) ocular vestibular evoked myogenic potential (oVEMP), 2) computerized dynamic posturography and 3) vestibular perceptual thresholds. oVEMP responses are elicited using a mechanical stimuli approach. Computerized dynamic posturography was used to quantify Sensory Organization Tests (SOTs), including SOT5M which involved performing pitching head movements while balancing on a sway-reference support surface with eyes closed. We implemented a vestibular perceptual threshold task using the tilt capabilities of the Tilt-Translation Sled (TTS) at JSC. On each trial, the subject was passively roll-tilted left ear down or right ear down in the dark and verbally provided a forced-choice response regarding which direction they felt tilted. The motion profile was a single-cycle sinusoid of angular acceleration with a

  10. The effect of balance training on cervical sensorimotor function and neck pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beinert, Konstantin; Taube, Wolfgang

    2013-01-01

    The authors' aim was to evaluate the effect of balance training on cervical joint position sense in people with subclinical neck pain. Thirty-four participants were randomly assigned to balance training or to stay active. Sensorimotor function was determined before and after 5 weeks of training by assessing the ability to reproduce the neutral head position and a predefined rotated head position. After balance training, the intervention group showed improved joint repositioning accuracy and decreased pain whereas no effects were observed in the control group. A weak correlation was identified between reduced neck pain intensity and improved joint repositioning. The present data demonstrate that balance training can effectively improve cervical sensorimotor function and decrease neck pain intensity.

  11. Fluoro-Jade and TUNEL staining as useful tools to identify ischemic brain damage following moderate extradural compression of sensorimotor cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kundrotiene, Jurgita; Wägner, Anna; Liljequist, Sture

    2004-01-01

    Cerebral ischemia was produced by moderate compression for 30 min of a specific brain area in the sensorimotor cortex of Sprague-Dawley rats. On day 1, that is 24 h after the transient sensorimotor compression, ischemia-exposed animals displayed a marked focal neurological deficit documented as impaired beam walking performance. This functional disturbance was mainly due to contralateral fore- and hind-limb paresis. As assessed by daily beam walking tests it was shown that there was a spontaneous recovery of motor functions over a period of five to seven days after the ischemic event. Using histopathological analysis (Nissl staining) we have previously reported that the present experimental paradigm does not produce pannecrosis (tissue cavitation) despite the highly reproducible focal neurological deficit. We now show how staining with fluorescent markers for neuronal death, that is Fluoro-Jade and TUNEL, respectively, identifies regional patterns of selective neuronal death. These observations add further support to the working hypothesis that the brain damage caused by cortical compression-induced ischemia consists of scattered, degenerating neurons in specific brain regions. Postsurgical administration of the AMPA receptor specific antagonist, LY326325 (30 mg/kg; i.p., 70 min after compression), not only improved beam walking performance on day 1 to 3, respectively but also significantly reduced the number of Fluoro-Jade stained neurons on day 5. These results suggest that enhanced AMPA/glutamate receptor activity is at least partially responsible for the ischemia-produced brain damage detected by the fluorescent marker Fluoro-Jade.

  12. Correlation between subacute sensorimotor deficits and brain water content after surgical brain injury in rats

    OpenAIRE

    McBride, Devin W.; Wang, Yuechun; Sherchan, Prativa; Tang, Jiping; Zhang, John H.

    2015-01-01

    Brain edema is a major contributor to poor outcome and reduced quality of life after surgical brain injury (SBI). Although SBI pathophysiology is well-known, the correlation between cerebral edema and neurological deficits has not been thoroughly examined in the rat model of SBI. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the correlation between brain edema and deficits in standard sensorimotor neurobehavior tests for rats subjected to SBI. Sixty male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected ...

  13. Sensorimotor synchronization with tempo-changing auditory sequences: Modeling temporal adaptation and anticipation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Steen, M C Marieke; Jacoby, Nori; Fairhurst, Merle T; Keller, Peter E

    2015-11-11

    The current study investigated the human ability to synchronize movements with event sequences containing continuous tempo changes. This capacity is evident, for example, in ensemble musicians who maintain precise interpersonal coordination while modulating the performance tempo for expressive purposes. Here we tested an ADaptation and Anticipation Model (ADAM) that was developed to account for such behavior by combining error correction processes (adaptation) with a predictive temporal extrapolation process (anticipation). While previous computational models of synchronization incorporate error correction, they do not account for prediction during tempo-changing behavior. The fit between behavioral data and computer simulations based on four versions of ADAM was assessed. These versions included a model with adaptation only, one in which adaptation and anticipation act in combination (error correction is applied on the basis of predicted tempo changes), and two models in which adaptation and anticipation were linked in a joint module that corrects for predicted discrepancies between the outcomes of adaptive and anticipatory processes. The behavioral experiment required participants to tap their finger in time with three auditory pacing sequences containing tempo changes that differed in the rate of change and the number of turning points. Behavioral results indicated that sensorimotor synchronization accuracy and precision, while generally high, decreased with increases in the rate of tempo change and number of turning points. Simulations and model-based parameter estimates showed that adaptation mechanisms alone could not fully explain the observed precision of sensorimotor synchronization. Including anticipation in the model increased the precision of simulated sensorimotor synchronization and improved the fit of model to behavioral data, especially when adaptation and anticipation mechanisms were linked via a joint module based on the notion of joint internal

  14. A Phenomenological Account of Sensorimotor Difficulties in Autism: Intentionality, Movement, and Proprioception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grohmann, Till D A

    2017-01-01

    During the last decades, the focus in autism research has been progressively extended. Today it offers a large amount of material on sensorimotor disturbances as well as perceptive-cognitive preferences of people with autism. However, there are more and more critical voices against an intellectualist perspective in the cognitive sciences. The "enactive approach" as well as a new "movement perspective" to autism challenge the view of autism as a mere "cognitive" disturbance. They criticize the conception of a cognizing subject which is only interested in the world in as much as she/he can extract knowledge and organize it rationally. The present paper discusses fundamental insights from this critical sensorimotor perspective to autism from a phenomenological standpoint. Several important papers have already proven the fruitful combination of phenomenology with sensorimotor-focused research in the field of autism. However, these writings generally concentrate on problems of embodied intersubjectivity as an alternative approach to leading "theory of mind" paradigms. The present article reflects on the role and dimension of sensorimotor problems in themselves and not primarily in the intersubjective encounter. The notion of body intentionality will turn out to be a central heuristic device in order to understand the subject's relationship to the world within a holistic framework, in which the person's way to move, feel, and perceive are manners of understanding his/her own world. Empirical findings on difficulties in proactive and anticipatory control of movement as well as research outcome on proprioception and kinesthetic feedback will provide suitable material for discussing the transformation of body intentionality in autism. Phenomenology will provide the theoretical foundation in order to understand atypical movement patterns as alternative ways for producing alternative meanings. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  15. Object-Action Complexes: Grounded Abstractions of Sensori-motor Processes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krüger, Norbert; Geib, Christopher; Piater, Justus

    2011-01-01

    This paper formalises Object-Action Complexes (OACs) as a basis for symbolic representations of sensorimotor experience and behaviours. OACs are designed to capture the interaction between objects and associated actions in articial cognitive systems. This paper gives a formal denition of OACs, pr......, provides examples of their use for autonomous cognitive robots, and enumerates a number of critical learning problems in terms of OACs....

  16. Loss of laterality in chronic cocaine users: an fMRI investigation of sensorimotor control

    OpenAIRE

    Hanlon, Colleen A.; Wesley, Michael J.; Roth, Alicia J.; Miller, Mack D.; Porrino, Linda J.

    2010-01-01

    Movement disturbances are often overlooked consequences of chronic cocaine abuse. The purpose of this study was to systematically investigate sensorimotor performance in chronic cocaine users and characterize changes in brain activity among movement-related regions of interest (ROIs) in these users. Functional magnetic resonance imaging data were collected from fourteen chronic cocaine users and fifteen age and gender matched controls. All participants performed a sequential finger-tapping ta...

  17. Burning feet in polycythemia vera – peripheral sensorimotor axonal neuropathy with erythromelalgia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wollina U

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Uwe Wollina Department of Dermatology and Allergology, Academic Teaching Hospital Dresden-Friedrichstadt, Dresden, Germany Abstract: Polycythemia vera is a rare myeloproliferative disease. Cutaneous symptoms are uncommon. We report about a 72-year-old female patient with JAK2V617F-positive polycythemia who developed peripheral sensorimotor axonal neuropathy and erythromelalgia. Possible causes and treatment are discussed. Keywords: bone marrow diseases, myeloproliferative diseases, JAK2 mutations, burning sensations, peripheral neuropathy

  18. Associative and sensorimotor learning for parenting involves mirror neurons under the influence of oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, S Shaun; Macdonald, Adam; Swain, James E

    2014-04-01

    Mirror neuron-based associative learning may be understood according to associative learning theories, in addition to sensorimotor learning theories. This is important for a comprehensive understanding of the role of mirror neurons and related hormone modulators, such as oxytocin, in complex social interactions such as among parent-infant dyads and in examples of mirror neuron function that involve abnormal motor systems such as depression.

  19. Associative and sensorimotor learning for parenting involves mirror neurons under the influence of oxytocin

    OpenAIRE

    Ho, S. Shaun; MacDonald, Adam; Swain, James E.

    2014-01-01

    Mirror neuron–based associative learning may be understood according to associative learning theories, in addition to sensorimotor learning theories. This is important for a comprehensive understanding of the role of mirror neurons and related hormone modulators, such as oxytocin, in complex social interactions such as among parent–infant dyads and in examples of mirror neuron function that involve abnormal motor systems such as depression.

  20. Virtual Reality as a Medium for Sensorimotor Adaptation Training and Spaceflight Countermeasures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madansingh, S.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2015-01-01

    With the upcoming shift to extra-long duration missions (1 year) aboard the ISS, sensorimotor adaptations during transitory periods in-and-out of microgravity are more important to understand and prepare for. Advances in virtual reality technology enables everyday adoption of these tools for entertainment and use in training. Experiencing virtual environments (VE) allows for the manipulation of visual flow to elicit automatic motor behavior and produce sensorimotor adaptation (SA). Recently, the ability to train individuals using repeatable and varied exposures to SA challenges has shown success by improving performance during exposure to a novel environment (Batson 2011). This capacity to 'learn to learn' is referred to as sensorimotor adaptive generalizability and, through the use of treadmill training, represents an untapped potential for individualized countermeasures. The goal of this study is to determine the feasibility of present head mounted displays (HMDs) to produce compelling visual flow information and the expected adaptations for use in future SA treadmill-based countermeasures. Participants experience infinite hallways providing congruent (baseline) or incongruent visual information (half or double speed) via HMD while walking on an instrumented treadmill at 1.1m/s. As gait performance approaches baseline levels, an adaptation time constant is derived to establish individual time-to-adapt (TTA). It is hypothesized that decreasing the TTA through SA treadmill training will facilitate sensorimotor adaptation during gravitational transitions. In this way, HMD technology represents a novel platform for SA training using off-the-shelf consumer products for greater training flexibility in astronaut and terrestrial applications alike.

  1. Coupling internal cerebellar models enhances online adaptation and supports offline consolidation in sensorimotor tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Passot , Jean-Baptiste; Luque , Niceto R.; Arleo , Angelo

    2013-01-01

    International audience; The cerebellum is thought to mediate sensorimotor adaptation through the acquisition of internal models of the body-environment interaction. These representations can be of two types, identified as forward and inverse models. The first predicts the sensory consequences of actions, while the second provides the correct commands to achieve desired state transitions. In this paper, we propose a composite architecture consisting of multiple cerebellar internal models to ac...

  2. Sustainable Transition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Ole Erik; Søndergård, Bent

    2014-01-01

    of agendas/vision, technologies, actors and institutions in the emergent design of an urban mobility system based on an electric car sharing system. Why. Designing for sustainability is a fundamental challenge for future design practices; designers have to obtain an ability to contribute to sustainable...

  3. Sustainable transformation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Nicolai Bo

    This paper is about sustainable transformation with a particular focus on listed buildings. It is based on the notion that sustainability is not just a question of energy conditions, but also about the building being robust. Robust architecture means that the building can be maintained and rebuil...

  4. Sustainability Labeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dam, van Y.K.

    2017-01-01

    Sustainability labeling originated from a need to protect the identity of alternative systems of food production and to increase market transparency. From the 1980s onwards sustainability labeling has changed into a policy instrument replacing direct government regulation of the food market, and a

  5. Catching-up: Children with developmental coordination disorder compared to healthy children before and after sensorimotor therapy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mats Niklasson

    Full Text Available The aims of the present study were to (a compare healthy children in terms of sensorimotor maturity to untreated children diagnosed with developmental coordination disorder (DCD and (b compare healthy children to diagnosed children following completed treatment with sensorimotor therapy. Participants were 298 children, 196 boys and 102 girls, distributed into a Norm group of healthy children (n = 99 and a group of children diagnosed with DCD (n = 199 with a total mean age of 8.77 years (SD = 2.88. Participants in both groups were assessed on instruments aimed to detect sensorimotor deviations. The children in the DCD group completed, during on average 36 months, sensorimotor therapy which comprised stereotypical fetal- and infant movements, vestibular stimulation, tactile stimulation, auditory stimulation, complementary play exercises, gross motor milestones, and sports-related gross motor skills. At the final visit a full assessment was once more performed. Results showed that the Norm group performed better on all sensorimotor tests as compared to the untreated children from the DCD group, with the exception of an audiometric test where both groups performed at the same level. Girls performed better on tests assessing proprioceptive and balance abilities. Results also showed, after controls for natural maturing effects, that the children from the DCD group after sensorimotor therapy did catch up with the healthy children. The concept of "catching-up" is used within developmental medicine but has not earlier been documented with regard to children and youth in connection with DCD.

  6. Treatment of Memory Impairment and Sensorimotor Deficits in an Animal Model for the Gulf War Veterans Illnesses

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-01

    and/or parasagittal sectioning through the entire brain. H&E and Nissl staining was done at multiple levels through each brain, and m icroscopic... staining characteristics) between three treated groups (Flupirt ine/DEET/Permethrin; DEET/Permethrin; Flupirtine only) and control (vehicle). The...intens ity. Ther e were small numbers of these more densely- stained cells in the control cerebellum, but there were many more of them in all three

  7. Fingertip force planning during grasp is disrupted by impaired sensorimotor integration in children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gordon, A.M.; Charles, J.; Steenbergen, B.

    2006-01-01

    In the present study we examine the ability of children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy (CP) to use anticipatory control of fingertip forces during grasping, and whether anticipatory control is facilitated by lifts with the contralateral hand. Eight children with CP (age 4-13) were asked to perform

  8. Afterschool Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hilary D. Joyce

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Youth participation in quality extended learning opportunities (ELOs results in positive academic, physical, mental health, and social/emotional outcomes. Funding is essential to implementing and sustaining quality ELOs; however multiple funding barriers and challenges exist. Understanding the types of funds available for ELOs and the factors that influence sustainability is critical. Through surveys and telephone interviews of ELO providers, this descriptive study identified and examined ELO funding streams, the ways ELO providers use these funding streams, and the barriers and challenges to sustainability. ELO programs often relied on one major funding stream coupled with nutrition supports as well as in-kind resources. Barriers to sustainability included year-to-year funding, transportation costs, reducing community partnerships, and difficulty in diversifying funds. Recommendations to enhance ELO sustainability are offered, particularly in relation to overcoming the challenges to diversification of funding resources and establishing mutually supportive partnerships and collaboration.

  9. Sensorimotor cortex ablation induces time-dependent response of ACTH cells in adult rats: behavioral, immunohistomorphometric and hormonal study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavrnja, Irena; Trifunovic, Svetlana; Ajdzanovic, Vladimir; Pekovic, Sanja; Bjelobaba, Ivana; Stojiljkovic, Mirjana; Milosevic, Verica

    2014-02-10

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) represents a serious event with far reaching complications, including pituitary dysfunction. Pars distalis corticotropes (ACTH cells), that represent the active module of hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenocortical axis, seem to be affected as well. Since pituitary failure after TBI has been associated with neurobehavioral impairments the aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of TBI on recovery of motor functions, morphology and secretory activity of ACTH cells in the pituitary of adult rats. Wistar male rats, initially exposed to sensorimotor cortex ablation (SCA), were sacrificed at the 2nd, 7th, 14th and 30th days post-surgery (dps). A beam walking test was used to evaluate the recovery of motor functions. Pituitary glands and blood were collected for morphological and hormonal analyses. During the first two weeks post-injury increased recovery of locomotor function was detected, reaching almost the control value at day 30. SCA induces significant increase of pituitary weights compared to their time-matched controls. The volume of ACTH-immunopositive cells was reduced at the 7th dps, while at the 14th dps their volume was enlarged, in comparison to corresponding sham controls. Volume density of ACTH cells was increased only at 14th dps, while at day 30 this increase was insignificant. The plasma level of ACTH transiently increased after the injury. The most pronounced changes were observed at the 7th and 14th dps, and were followed by decrease toward control levels at the 30th dps. Thus, temporal changes in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis after traumatic brain injury appear to correlate with the recovery process. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Inhibition of 5a-reductase in the nucleus accumbens counters sensorimotor gating deficits induced by dopaminergic activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devoto, Paola; Frau, Roberto; Bini, Valentina; Pillolla, Giuliano; Saba, Pierluigi; Flore, Giovanna; Corona, Marta; Marrosu, Francesco; Bortolato, Marco

    2012-01-01

    Summary Cogent evidence highlights a key role of neurosteroids and androgens in schizophrenia. We recently reported that inhibition of steroid 5α-reductase (5αR), the rate-limiting enzyme in neurosteroid synthesis and androgen metabolism, elicits antipsychotic-like effects in humans and animal models, without inducing extrapyramidal side effects. To elucidate the anatomical substrates mediating these effects, we investigated the contribution of peripheral and neural structures to the behavioral effects of the 5αR inhibitor finasteride (FIN) on the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle reflex (ASR), a rat paradigm that dependably simulates the sensorimotor gating impairments observed in schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric disorders. The potential effect of drug-induced ASR modifications on PPI was excluded by measuring this index both as percent (%PPI) and absolute values (ΔPPI). In both orchidectomized and sham-operated rats, FIN prevented the %PPI deficits induced by the dopamine (DA) receptor agonists apomorphine (APO, 0.25 mg/kg, SC) and d-amphetamine (AMPH, 2.5 mg/kg, SC), although the latter effect was not corroborated by ΔPPI analysis. Conversely, APO-induced PPI deficits were countered by FIN infusions in the brain ventricles (10 μg/1 μl) and in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell and core (0.5 μg/0.5 μl/side). No significant PPI-ameliorating effect was observed following FIN injections in other brain regions, including dorsal caudate, basolateral amygdala, ventral hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex, although a statistical trend was observed for the latter region. The efflux of DA in NAc was increased by systemic, but not intracerebral FIN administration. Taken together, these findings suggest that the role of 5αR in gating regulation is based on post-synaptic mechanisms in the NAc, and is not directly related to alterations in DA efflux in this region. PMID:22029952

  11. Glucose-Dependent Insulinotropic Polypeptide Ameliorates Mild Traumatic Brain Injury-Induced Cognitive and Sensorimotor Deficits and Neuroinflammation in Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yu-Wen; Hsieh, Tsung-Hsun; Chen, Kai-Yun; Wu, John Chung-Che; Hoffer, Barry J.; Greig, Nigel H.; Li, Yazhou; Lai, Jing-Huei; Chang, Cheng-Fu; Lin, Jia-Wei; Chen, Yu-Hsin

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is a major public health issue, representing 75–90% of all cases of TBI. In clinical settings, mTBI, which is defined as a Glascow Coma Scale (GCS) score of 13–15, can lead to various physical, cognitive, emotional, and psychological-related symptoms. To date, there are no pharmaceutical-based therapies to manage the development of the pathological deficits associated with mTBI. In this study, the neurotrophic and neuroprotective properties of glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP), an incretin similar to glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), was investigated after its steady-state subcutaneous administration, focusing on behavior after mTBI in an in vivo animal model. The mTBI rat model was generated by a mild controlled cortical impact (mCCI) and used to evaluate the therapeutic potential of GIP. We used the Morris water maze and novel object recognition tests, which are tasks for spatial and recognition memory, respectively, to identify the putative therapeutic effects of GIP on cognitive function. Further, beam walking and the adhesive removal tests were used to evaluate locomotor activity and somatosensory functions in rats with and without GIP administration after mCCI lesion. Lastly, we used immunohistochemical (IHC) staining and Western blot analyses to evaluate the inflammatory markers, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), amyloid-β precursor protein (APP), and bone marrow tyrosine kinase gene in chromosome X (BMX) in animals with mTBI. GIP was well tolerated and ameliorated mTBI-induced memory impairments, poor balance, and sensorimotor deficits after initiation in the post-injury period. In addition, GIP mitigated mTBI-induced neuroinflammatory changes on GFAP, APP, and BMX protein levels. These findings suggest GIP has significant benefits in managing mTBI-related symptoms and represents a novel strategy for mTBI treatment. PMID:26972789

  12. Thalamo-Sensorimotor Functional Connectivity Correlates with World Ranking of Olympic, Elite, and High Performance Athletes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zirui Huang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Brain plasticity studies have shown functional reorganization in participants with outstanding motor expertise. Little is known about neural plasticity associated with exceptionally long motor training or of its predictive value for motor performance excellence. The present study utilised resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI in a unique sample of world-class athletes: Olympic, elite, and internationally ranked swimmers (n=30. Their world ranking ranged from 1st to 250th: each had prepared for participation in the Olympic Games. Combining rs-fMRI graph-theoretical and seed-based functional connectivity analyses, it was discovered that the thalamus has its strongest connections with the sensorimotor network in elite swimmers with the highest world rankings (career best rank: 1–35. Strikingly, thalamo-sensorimotor functional connections were highly correlated with the swimmers’ motor performance excellence, that is, accounting for 41% of the individual variance in best world ranking. Our findings shed light on neural correlates of long-term athletic performance involving thalamo-sensorimotor functional circuits.

  13. Cognitive demand of human sensorimotor performance during an extended space mission: a dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, Otmar; Weigelt, Cornelia; Bloomberg, Jacob J

    2010-09-01

    Two previous single-case studies found that the dual-task costs of manual tracking plus memory search increased during a space mission, and concluded that sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may be related to cognitive overload. Since dual-task costs were insensitive to the difficulty of memory search, the authors argued that the overload may reflect stress-related problems of multitasking, rather than a scarcity of specific cognitive resources. Here we expand the available database and compare different types of concurrent task. Three subjects were repeatedly tested before, during, and after an extended mission on the International Space Station (ISS). They performed an unstable tracking task and four reaction-time tasks, both separately and concurrently. Inflight data could only be obtained during later parts of the mission. The tracking error increased from pre- to in flight by a factor of about 2, both under single- and dual-task conditions. The dual-task costs with a reaction-time task requiring rhythm production was 2.4 times higher than with a reaction-time task requiring visuo-spatial transformations, and 8 times higher than with a regular choice reaction-time task. Long-term sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may reflect not only stress, but also a scarcity of resources related to complex motor programming; possibly those resources are tied up by sensorimotor adaptation to the space environment.

  14. Correlation between subacute sensorimotor deficits and brain edema in two mouse models of intracerebral hemorrhage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krafft, Paul R; McBride, Devin W; Lekic, Tim; Rolland, William B; Mansell, Charles E; Ma, Qingyi; Tang, Jiping; Zhang, John H

    2014-05-01

    Formation of brain edema after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) is highly associated with its poor outcome. However, the relationship between cerebral edema and behavioral deficits has not been thoroughly examined in the preclinical setting. Hence, this study aimed to evaluate the ability of common sensorimotor tests to predict the extent of brain edema in two mouse models of ICH. One hundred male CD-1 mice were subjected to sham surgery or ICH induction via intrastriatal injection of either autologous blood (30 μL) or bacterial collagenase (0.0375U or 0.075U). At 24 and 72 h after surgery, animals underwent a battery of behavioral tests, including the modified Garcia neuroscore (Neuroscore), corner turn test (CTT), forelimb placing test (FPT), wire hang task (WHT) and beam walking (BW). Brain edema was evaluated via the wet weight/dry weight method. Intrastriatal injection of autologous blood or bacterial collagenase resulted in a significant increase in brain water content and associated sensorimotor deficits (p<0.05). A significant correlation between brain edema and sensorimotor deficits was observed for all behavioral tests except for WHT and BW. Based on these findings, we recommend implementing the Neuroscore, CTT and/or FPT in preclinical studies of unilateral ICH in mice. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Toward an autonomous brain machine interface: integrating sensorimotor reward modulation and reinforcement learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Brandi T; Tarigoppula, Venkata S Aditya; Chen, Chen; Francis, Joseph T

    2015-05-13

    For decades, neurophysiologists have worked on elucidating the function of the cortical sensorimotor control system from the standpoint of kinematics or dynamics. Recently, computational neuroscientists have developed models that can emulate changes seen in the primary motor cortex during learning. However, these simulations rely on the existence of a reward-like signal in the primary sensorimotor cortex. Reward modulation of the primary sensorimotor cortex has yet to be characterized at the level of neural units. Here we demonstrate that single units/multiunits and local field potentials in the primary motor (M1) cortex of nonhuman primates (Macaca radiata) are modulated by reward expectation during reaching movements and that this modulation is present even while subjects passively view cursor motions that are predictive of either reward or nonreward. After establishing this reward modulation, we set out to determine whether we could correctly classify rewarding versus nonrewarding trials, on a moment-to-moment basis. This reward information could then be used in collaboration with reinforcement learning principles toward an autonomous brain-machine interface. The autonomous brain-machine interface would use M1 for both decoding movement intention and extraction of reward expectation information as evaluative feedback, which would then update the decoding algorithm as necessary. In the work presented here, we show that this, in theory, is possible. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357374-14$15.00/0.

  16. The Thalamocortical Projection Systems in Primate: An Anatomical Support for Multisensory and Sensorimotor Interplay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappe, Céline; Morel, Anne; Barone, Pascal

    2009-01-01

    Multisensory and sensorimotor integrations are usually considered to occur in superior colliculus and cerebral cortex, but few studies proposed the thalamus as being involved in these integrative processes. We investigated whether the organization of the thalamocortical (TC) systems for different modalities partly overlap, representing an anatomical support for multisensory and sensorimotor interplay in thalamus. In 2 macaque monkeys, 6 neuroanatomical tracers were injected in the rostral and caudal auditory cortex, posterior parietal cortex (PE/PEa in area 5), and dorsal and ventral premotor cortical areas (PMd, PMv), demonstrating the existence of overlapping territories of thalamic projections to areas of different modalities (sensory and motor). TC projections, distinct from the ones arising from specific unimodal sensory nuclei, were observed from motor thalamus to PE/PEa or auditory cortex and from sensory thalamus to PMd/PMv. The central lateral nucleus and the mediodorsal nucleus project to all injected areas, but the most significant overlap across modalities was found in the medial pulvinar nucleus. The present results demonstrate the presence of thalamic territories integrating different sensory modalities with motor attributes. Based on the divergent/convergent pattern of TC and corticothalamic projections, 4 distinct mechanisms of multisensory and sensorimotor interplay are proposed. PMID:19150924

  17. Cortical mechanisms underlying sensorimotor enhancement promoted by walking with haptic inputs in a virtual environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sangani, Samir; Lamontagne, Anouk; Fung, Joyce

    2015-01-01

    Sensorimotor integration is a complex process in the central nervous system that produces task-specific motor output based on selective and rapid integration of sensory information from multiple sources. This chapter reviews briefly the role of haptic cues in postural control during tandem stance and locomotion, focusing on sensorimotor enhancement of locomotion post stroke. The use of mixed-reality systems incorporating both haptic cues and virtual reality technology in gait rehabilitation post stroke is discussed. Over the last decade, researchers and clinicians have shown evidence of cerebral reorganization that underlies functional recovery after stroke based on results from neuroimaging techniques such as positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging. These imaging modalities are however limited in their capacity to measure cortical changes during extensive body motions in upright stance. Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) on the other hand provides a unique opportunity to measure cortical activity associated with postural control during locomotion. Evidence of cortical changes associated with sensorimotor enhancement induced by haptic touch during locomotion is revealed through fNIRS in a pilot study involving healthy individuals and a case study involving a chronic stroke patient. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Risk-sensitivity and the mean-variance trade-off: decision making in sensorimotor control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagengast, Arne J; Braun, Daniel A; Wolpert, Daniel M

    2011-08-07

    Numerous psychophysical studies suggest that the sensorimotor system chooses actions that optimize the average cost associated with a movement. Recently, however, violations of this hypothesis have been reported in line with economic theories of decision-making that not only consider the mean payoff, but are also sensitive to risk, that is the variability of the payoff. Here, we examine the hypothesis that risk-sensitivity in sensorimotor control arises as a mean-variance trade-off in movement costs. We designed a motor task in which participants could choose between a sure motor action that resulted in a fixed amount of effort and a risky motor action that resulted in a variable amount of effort that could be either lower or higher than the fixed effort. By changing the mean effort of the risky action while experimentally fixing its variance, we determined indifference points at which participants chose equiprobably between the sure, fixed amount of effort option and the risky, variable effort option. Depending on whether participants accepted a variable effort with a mean that was higher, lower or equal to the fixed effort, they could be classified as risk-seeking, risk-averse or risk-neutral. Most subjects were risk-sensitive in our task consistent with a mean-variance trade-off in effort, thereby, underlining the importance of risk-sensitivity in computational models of sensorimotor control.

  19. Coupling internal cerebellar models enhances online adaptation and supports offline consolidation in sensorimotor tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passot, Jean-Baptiste; Luque, Niceto R; Arleo, Angelo

    2013-01-01

    The cerebellum is thought to mediate sensorimotor adaptation through the acquisition of internal models of the body-environment interaction. These representations can be of two types, identified as forward and inverse models. The first predicts the sensory consequences of actions, while the second provides the correct commands to achieve desired state transitions. In this paper, we propose a composite architecture consisting of multiple cerebellar internal models to account for the adaptation performance of humans during sensorimotor learning. The proposed model takes inspiration from the cerebellar microcomplex circuit, and employs spiking neurons to process information. We investigate the intrinsic properties of the cerebellar circuitry subserving efficient adaptation properties, and we assess the complementary contributions of internal representations by simulating our model in a procedural adaptation task. Our simulation results suggest that the coupling of internal models enhances learning performance significantly (compared with independent forward and inverse models), and it allows for the reproduction of human adaptation capabilities. Furthermore, we provide a computational explanation for the performance improvement observed after one night of sleep in a wide range of sensorimotor tasks. We predict that internal model coupling is a necessary condition for the offline consolidation of procedural memories.

  20. Coupling internal cerebellar models enhances online adaptation and supports offline consolidation in sensorimotor tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Baptiste ePassot

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The cerebellum is thought to mediate sensorimotor adaptation through the acquisition of internal models of the body–environment interaction. These representations can be of two types, identified as forward and inverse models. The first predicts the sensory consequences of actions, while the second provides the correct commands to achieve desired state transitions. In this paper, we propose a composite architecture consisting of multiple cerebellar internal models to account for the adaptation performance of humans during sensorimotor learning. The proposed model takes inspiration from the cerebellar microcomplex circuit, and employs spiking neurons to process information. We investigate the intrinsic properties of the cerebellar circuitry subserving efficient adaptation properties, and we assess the complementary contributions of internal representations by simulating our model in a procedural adaptation task. Our simulation results suggest that the coupling of internal models enhances learning performance significantly (compared with independent forward and inverse models, and it allows for the reproduction of human adaptation capabilities. Furthermore, we provide a computational explanation for the performance improvement observed after one night of sleep in a wide range of sensorimotor tasks. We predict that internal model coupling is a necessary condition for the offline consolidation of procedural memories.

  1. Frontal plane hip and ankle sensorimotor function, not age, predicts unipedal stance time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allet, Lara; Kim, Hogene; Ashton-Miller, James; De Mott, Trina; Richardson, James K.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Changes occur in muscles and nerves with aging. This study aimed to explore the relationship between unipedal stance time (UST) and frontal plane hip and ankle sensorimotor function in subjects with diabetic neuropathy. Methods UST, quantitative measures of frontal plane ankle proprioceptive thresholds, and ankle and hip motor function were tested in forty-one persons with a spectrum of lower limb sensorimotor function, ranging from healthy to moderately severe diabetic neuropathy. Results Frontal plane hip and ankle sensorimotor function demonstrated significant relationships with UST. Multivariate analysis identified only composite hip strength, composite ankle proprioceptive threshold, and age to be significant predictors of UST (R2=0.73); they explained 46%, 24% and 3% of the variance, respectively. Discussion/Conclusions Frontal plane hip strength was the single best predictor of UST and appeared to compensate for less precise ankle proprioceptive thresholds. This finding is clinically relevant given the possibility of strengthening the hip, even in patients with significant PN. . PMID:22431092

  2. Relationship between sensorimotor peripheral nerve function and indicators of cardiovascular autonomic function in older adults from the Health, Aging and Body Composition Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange-Maia, Brittney S; Newman, Anne B; Jakicic, John M; Cauley, Jane A; Boudreau, Robert M; Schwartz, Ann V; Simonsick, Eleanor M; Satterfield, Suzanne; Vinik, Aaron I; Zivkovic, Sasa; Harris, Tamara B; Strotmeyer, Elsa S

    2017-10-01

    Age-related peripheral nervous system (PNS) impairments are highly prevalent in older adults. Although sensorimotor and cardiovascular autonomic function have been shown to be related in persons with diabetes, the nature of the relationship in general community-dwelling older adult populations is unknown. Health, Aging and Body Composition participants (n=2399, age=76.5±2.9years, 52% women, 38% black) underwent peripheral nerve testing at the 2000/01 clinic visit. Nerve conduction amplitude and velocity were measured at the peroneal motor nerve. Sensory nerve function was assessed with vibration detection threshold and monofilament (1.4-g/10-g) testing at the big toe. Symptoms of lower-extremity peripheral neuropathy were collected by self-report. Cardiovascular autonomic function indicators included postural hypotension, resting heart rate (HR), as well as HR response to and recovery from submaximal exercise testing (400m walk). Multivariable modeling adjusted for demographic/lifestyle factors, medication use and comorbid conditions. In fully adjusted models, poor motor nerve conduction velocity (function or symptoms of peripheral neuropathy and indicators of cardiovascular autonomic function. Motor nerve function and indicators of cardiovascular autonomic function remained significantly related even after considering many potentially shared risk factors. Future studies should investigate common underlying processes for developing multiple PNS impairments in older adults. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Using the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform in the sensorimotor training of freezing of gait in Parkinson’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanna Barros Goncalves

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Gait disturbances are one of the main limiting factors for autonomy and quality of life in individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD, and freezing of gait (FoG is a common phenomenon that affects one-third of this population. Thus the effect of the implementation of a therapeutic program in a sensorimotor virtual environment through the Nintendo® Wii Fit™ plus platform on the motor impairment caused by FoG in individuals with PD is analyzed. A sample of 30 volunteers with PD was subdivided into a control group (CG, consisting of participants without FoG, and the experimental group (EG, consisting of individuals with FoG. Those selected were assessed before and after the experiment through the motor segment of the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale of daily activities by Schwab and England, the Quality of Life for PD, Time Up and Go Test, and the FoG identification questionnaire, the last one being only in the EG. The training was divided into three categories: aerobic (step and boxing, balance (ski slalom, ski jump, head shots and tightrope, and exercise plus (segway and cycling. Both groups improved gait performance, with significant improvement of the impairments originated by the FoG, as well as improvement in motor bouts, quality of life and independence in their daily activities.

  4. Robotic assessment of the influence of age on upper-limb sensorimotor function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LLinares A

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Ana LLinares, Francisco Javier Badesa, Ricardo Morales, Nicolas Garcia-Aracil, JM Sabater, Eduardo Fernandez Biomedical Neuroengineering, Universidad Miguel Hernández de Elche, Elche, Spain Purpose: This paper examines the influence of age on several attributes of sensorimotor performance while performing a reaching task. Our hypothesis, based on previous studies, is that aged persons will show differences in one or more of the attributes of sensorimotor performance. Patients and methods: Fifty-one subjects (aged 20–80 years with no known neuromotor disorders of the upper limbs participated in the study. Subjects were asked to grasp the end-effector of a pneumatic robotic device with two degrees of freedom in order to reach peripheral targets (1.0 cm radius, "quickly and accurately", from a centrally located target (1.0 cm radius. Subjects began each trial by holding the hand within the central target for 2000 milliseconds. Afterwards, a peripheral target was illuminated. Then participants were given 3000 milliseconds to complete the movement. When a target was reached, the participant had to return to the central target in order to start a new trial. A total of 64 trials were completed and each peripheral target was illuminated in a random block design. Results: Subjects were divided into three groups according to age: group 1 (age 20–40 years, group 2 (age 41–60 years, and group 3 (age 61–80 years. The Kruskal–Wallis test showed significant differences (P < 0.05 between groups, except for the variables postural speed in the dominant arm, and postural speed and initial deviation in the non-dominant arm (P > 0.05. These results suggest that age introduces significant differences in upper-limb motor function. Conclusion: Our findings show that there are objective differences in sensorimotor function due to age, and that these differences are greater for the dominant arm. Therefore for the assessment of upper-limb function, we should

  5. Sustainable Cities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Georg, Susse; Garza de Linde, Gabriela Lucía

    Judging from the number of communities and cities striving or claiming to be sustainable and how often eco-development is invoked as the means for urban regeneration, it appears that sustainable and eco-development have become “the leading paradigm within urban development” (Whitehead 2003....../assessment tool. The context for our study is urban regeneration in one Danish city, which had been suffering from industrial decline and which is currently investing in establishing a “sustainable city”. Based on this case study we explore how the insights and inspiration evoked in working with the tool...

  6. Sustainable Transportation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hall, Ralph P.; Gudmundsson, Henrik; Marsden, Greg

    2014-01-01

    The transportation system is the backbone of economic and social progress and the means by which humans access goods and services and connect with one another. Yet, as the scale of transportation activities has grown worldwide, so too have the negative environmental, social, and economic impacts...... that relate to the construction and maintenance of transportation infrastructure and the operation or use of the different transportation modes. The concept of sustainable transportation emerged in response to these concerns as part of the broader notion of sustainable development. Given the transportation...... sector’s significant contribution to global challenges such as climate change, it is often said that sustainable development cannot be achieved without sustainable transportation....

  7. Agriculture: Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the food, feed, and fiber needs of our country and the social, economic and other requirements.

  8. Sustainable consumption

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prothero, Andrea; Dobscha, Susan; Freund, Jim

    2011-01-01

    This essay explores sustainable consumption and considers possible roles for marketing and consumer researchers and public policy makers in addressing the many sustainability challenges that pervade our planet. Future research approaches to this interdisciplinary topic need to be comprehensive...... and systematic and will benefit from a variety of different perspectives. There are a number of opportunities for future research, and three areas are explored in detail. First, the essay considers the inconsistency between the attitudes and behaviors of consumers with respect to sustainability; next, the agenda...... is broadened to explore the role of individual citizens in society; and finally, a macro institutional approach to fostering sustainability is explored. Each of these areas is examined in detail and possible research avenues and public policy initiatives are considered within each of these separate...

  9. Sustainable Futures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sustainable Futures is a voluntary program that encourages industry to use predictive models to screen new chemicals early in the development process and offers incentives to companies subject to TSCA section 5.

  10. Sustainability reporting

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kolk, A.

    2005-01-01

    This article gives an overview of developments in sustainability (also sometimes labelled corporate social responsibility) reporting. The article will first briefly indicate how accountability on social and environmental issues started, already in the 1970s when social reports were published.

  11. Sustainable transformation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Nicolai Bo

    This paper is about sustainable transformation with a particular focus on listed buildings. It is based on the notion that sustainability is not just a question of energy conditions, but also about the building being robust. Robust architecture means that the building can be maintained and rebuilt......, that it can be adapted to changing functional needs, and that it has an architectural and cultural value. A specific proposal for a transformation that enhances the architectural qualities and building heritage values of an existing building forms the empirical material, which is discussed using different...... theoretical lenses. It is proposed that three parameters concerning the ꞌtransformabilityꞌ of the building can contribute to a more nuanced understanding of sustainable transformation: technical aspects, programmatic requirements and narrative value. It is proposed that the concept of ꞌsustainable...

  12. Sustainable Consumption

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Røpke, Inge

    2015-01-01

    The intention of this chapter is to explore the role of consumption and consumers in relation to sustainability transition processes and wider systemic transformations. In contrast to the individualistic focus in much research on sustainable consumption, the embeddedness of consumption activities...... in wider social, economic and technological frameworks is emphasised. In particular, the chapter is inspired by practice theory and transition theory. First, various trends in consumption are outlined to highlight some of the challenges for sustainability transitions. Then, it is discussed how consumption...... patterns are shaped over time and what should be considered in sustainability strategies. While discussions on consumption often take their point of departure in the perspective of the individual and then zoom to the wider context, the present approach is the opposite. The outline starts with the basic...

  13. Stabilizing Sustainability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reitan Andersen, Kirsti

    The publication of the Brundtland Report in 1987 put the topic of sustainable development on the political and corporate agenda. Defining sustainable development as “a development that meets the needs of the future without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs......” (WCED, 1987, p. 43), the Report also put a positive spin on the issue of sustainability by upholding capitalist beliefs in the possibility of infinite growth in a world of finite resources. While growth has delivered benefits, however, it has done so unequally and unsustainably. This thesis focuses...... on the textile and fashion industry, one of the world’s most polluting industries and an industry to some degree notorious for leading the ‘race to the bottom’ in global labour standards. Despite being faced with increasing demands to practise sustainability, most textile and fashion companies continue to fail...

  14. Seeking Sustainability

    OpenAIRE

    Clive L. Spash

    2014-01-01

    What does sustainability research do to help the environment? One might well wonder when observing the annual conference season with various academics and professors in sustainability science, ecological economics or environmental ethics driving to the airport to fly off to international meetings to discuss how bad things are getting, what should been done about it, and how time is running out for action. In fact, singling out a few academic groups is highly unfair because the link between pr...

  15. Local Sustainability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carrizosa Umana, Julio

    1998-01-01

    The current polemic about the possibilities of sustainable development has led to a renovated interest for the topic of the sustainability of the communities and the local sustainability. In front of the global sustainability whose conditions have been exposed by systemic ecologists and for macro economists, the sustainability of specific places arises in the planet whose conditions are object of study of the ecology of landscapes, of the ecological economy, of the cultural anthropology, of the environmental sociology and naturally, of the integral environmentalism. In this discussion the Colombian case charges unusual interest to be one of the few countries of Latin America, where a very dense net of municipalities exists, each one with its urban helmet and with a position and some functions defined by the political constitution of the nation. This net of municipalities and of urban helmets it also constitutes net of alternative to the current macro-cephalic situation. As well as Bogota grew, in a hundred years, of less than a hundred thousand inhabitants to six million inhabitants, each one of these municipalities contains a potential of growth that depends on the characteristics of its ecological, social, economic and politic sustainability

  16. Effects of Increasing Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation Current Intensity on Cortical Sensorimotor Network Activation: A Time Domain fNIRS Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Makii Muthalib

    Full Text Available Neuroimaging studies have shown neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES-evoked movements activate regions of the cortical sensorimotor network, including the primary sensorimotor cortex (SMC, premotor cortex (PMC, supplementary motor area (SMA, and secondary somatosensory area (S2, as well as regions of the prefrontal cortex (PFC known to be involved in pain processing. The aim of this study, on nine healthy subjects, was to compare the cortical network activation profile and pain ratings during NMES of the right forearm wrist extensor muscles at increasing current intensities up to and slightly over the individual maximal tolerated intensity (MTI, and with reference to voluntary (VOL wrist extension movements. By exploiting the capability of the multi-channel time domain functional near-infrared spectroscopy technique to relate depth information to the photon time-of-flight, the cortical and superficial oxygenated (O2Hb and deoxygenated (HHb hemoglobin concentrations were estimated. The O2Hb and HHb maps obtained using the General Linear Model (NIRS-SPM analysis method, showed that the VOL and NMES-evoked movements significantly increased activation (i.e., increase in O2Hb and corresponding decrease in HHb in the cortical layer of the contralateral sensorimotor network (SMC, PMC/SMA, and S2. However, the level and area of contralateral sensorimotor network (including PFC activation was significantly greater for NMES than VOL. Furthermore, there was greater bilateral sensorimotor network activation with the high NMES current intensities which corresponded with increased pain ratings. In conclusion, our findings suggest that greater bilateral sensorimotor network activation profile with high NMES current intensities could be in part attributable to increased attentional/pain processing and to increased bilateral sensorimotor integration in these cortical regions.

  17. Cerebellar anodal tDCS increases implicit learning when strategic re-aiming is suppressed in sensorimotor adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leow, Li-Ann; Marinovic, Welber; Riek, Stephan; Carroll, Timothy J

    2017-01-01

    Neurophysiological and neuroimaging work suggests that the cerebellum is critically involved in sensorimotor adaptation. Changes in cerebellar function alter behaviour when compensating for sensorimotor perturbations, as shown by non-invasive stimulation of the cerebellum and studies involving patients with cerebellar degeneration. It is known, however, that behavioural responses to sensorimotor perturbations reflect both explicit processes (such as volitional aiming to one side of a target to counteract a rotation of visual feedback) and implicit, error-driven updating of sensorimotor maps. The contribution of the cerebellum to these explicit and implicit processes remains unclear. Here, we examined the role of the cerebellum in sensorimotor adaptation to a 30° rotation of visual feedback of hand position during target-reaching, when the capacity to use explicit processes was manipulated by controlling movement preparation times. Explicit re-aiming was suppressed in one condition by requiring subjects to initiate their movements within 300ms of target presentation, and permitted in another condition by requiring subjects to wait approximately 1050ms after target presentation before movement initiation. Similar to previous work, applying anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS; 1.5mA) to the right cerebellum during adaptation resulted in faster compensation for errors imposed by the rotation. After exposure to the rotation, we evaluated implicit remapping in no-feedback trials after providing participants with explicit knowledge that the rotation had been removed. Crucially, movements were more adapted in these no-feedback trials following cerebellar anodal tDCS than after sham stimulation in both long and short preparation groups. Thus, cerebellar anodal tDCS increased implicit remapping during sensorimotor adaptation, irrespective of preparation time constraints. The results are consistent with the possibility that the cerebellum contributes to the

  18. Effects of Increasing Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation Current Intensity on Cortical Sensorimotor Network Activation: A Time Domain fNIRS Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthalib, Makii; Re, Rebecca; Zucchelli, Lucia; Perrey, Stephane; Contini, Davide; Caffini, Matteo; Spinelli, Lorenzo; Kerr, Graham; Quaresima, Valentina; Ferrari, Marco; Torricelli, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    Neuroimaging studies have shown neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES)-evoked movements activate regions of the cortical sensorimotor network, including the primary sensorimotor cortex (SMC), premotor cortex (PMC), supplementary motor area (SMA), and secondary somatosensory area (S2), as well as regions of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) known to be involved in pain processing. The aim of this study, on nine healthy subjects, was to compare the cortical network activation profile and pain ratings during NMES of the right forearm wrist extensor muscles at increasing current intensities up to and slightly over the individual maximal tolerated intensity (MTI), and with reference to voluntary (VOL) wrist extension movements. By exploiting the capability of the multi-channel time domain functional near-infrared spectroscopy technique to relate depth information to the photon time-of-flight, the cortical and superficial oxygenated (O2Hb) and deoxygenated (HHb) hemoglobin concentrations were estimated. The O2Hb and HHb maps obtained using the General Linear Model (NIRS-SPM) analysis method, showed that the VOL and NMES-evoked movements significantly increased activation (i.e., increase in O2Hb and corresponding decrease in HHb) in the cortical layer of the contralateral sensorimotor network (SMC, PMC/SMA, and S2). However, the level and area of contralateral sensorimotor network (including PFC) activation was significantly greater for NMES than VOL. Furthermore, there was greater bilateral sensorimotor network activation with the high NMES current intensities which corresponded with increased pain ratings. In conclusion, our findings suggest that greater bilateral sensorimotor network activation profile with high NMES current intensities could be in part attributable to increased attentional/pain processing and to increased bilateral sensorimotor integration in these cortical regions.

  19. Sustainable markets for sustainable energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Millan, J.; Smyser, C.

    1997-12-01

    The author discusses how the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is involved in sustainable energy development. It presently has 50 loans and grants for non conventional renewable energy projects and ten grants for efficiency programs for $600 and $17 million respectively, representing 100 MW of power. The IDB is concerned with how to create a sustainable market for sustainable energy projects. The IDB is trying to work with government, private sector, NGOs, trading allies, credit sources, and regulators to find proper roles for such projects. He discusses how the IDB is working to expand its vision and objectives in renewable energy projects in Central and South America.

  20. Use and usefulness of sustainability economics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bartelmus, Peter [Bergische Universitaet Wuppertal (Germany)

    2010-09-15

    Sustainable development is at the roots of sustainability economics. Baumgaertner and Quaas (2010) define sustainability economics as the combination of economic efficiency and justice in the distribution of nature's services. Van den Bergh (in press) criticizes their approach as 'axiomatic' and incomplete, lacking a discussion of environmental externalities and dogmas like the 'GDP dogma'. The focus on non-measurable welfare or happiness in both articles impairs the use and usefulness of their sustainability notions for applied economics and policy. Alternatively, environmentally modified national accounts offer a quantifiable sustainability concept of produced and natural capital maintenance. For practical reasons, sustainability economics should therefore deal with sustainable economic performance and growth. Coordination with other social goals has to be left to politics. (author)

  1. Setup of a novel biofeedback prototype for sensorimotor control of the hand and preliminary application in patients with peripheral nerve injuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Haw-Yen; Hsu, Hsiu-Yun; Su, Fong-Chin; Jou, I-Ming; Lin, Cheng-Feng; Kuo, Li-Chieh

    2013-02-01

    Biofeedback training is widely used for rehabilitative intervention in patients with central or peripheral nervous impairment to train correct movement patterns; however, no biofeedback apparatus is currently available to correct pinch force ratios for patients with sensory deficiencies. A cross-sectional and longitudinal design was used in an observational measurement study for establishing a prototype and to determine the effects of biofeedback intervention, respectively. This study aimed to develop a computerized evaluation and re-education biofeedback (CERB) prototype for application in clinical settings. A CERB prototype was developed integrating pinch apparatus hardware, a biofeedback user-controlled interface, and a data processing/analysis interface to detect momentary pinch performances in 79 people with normal hand sensation. Nine patients with hand sensory impairments were recruited to investigate the effects of training hand function with the CERB prototype. Hand dominance, pinch pattern, and age significantly affected the peak pinch force and force ratio for lifting a 480-g object with a steel surface. In the case of the 79 volunteers with normal hand sensation, hand dominance affected the time lag between peak pinch force and maximum load; however, it was unaffected by pinch pattern or age. Training with the CERB prototype produced significant improvements in force ratio and better performance in the pin insertion subtests, although the results for both 2-point discriminative and Semmes-Weinstein monofilament tests did not change significantly. The intervention findings are preliminary. This study developed a conjunct system suited for evaluating and restoring sensorimotor function for patients with impaired hand sensibility. The results from the participants with normal hand sensation could serve as a reference database for comparison with patients with nerve injuries.

  2. Sustained-Paced Finger Tapping: A Novel Approach to Measure Internal Sustained Attention

    OpenAIRE

    Marco A. Petilli; Marco A. Petilli; Daniela C. Trisolini; Roberta Daini; Roberta Daini; Roberta Daini

    2018-01-01

    Sustained attention is a fundamental prerequisite for all cognitive functions and its impairment is a common aftermath of both developmental and acquired neurological disorders. To date, all the sustained attention tasks rely heavily on selective attention to external stimuli. The interaction between selective and sustained attention represents a limit in the field of assessment and may mislead researchers or distort conclusions. The aim of the present perspective study was to propose a susta...

  3. Initial Sensorimotor and Cardiovascular Data Acquired from Soyuz Landings: Establishing a Functional Performance Recovery Time Constant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reschke, M. F.; Kozlovskaya, I. B.; Kofman, I. S.; Tomilovskaya, E. S.; Cerisano, J. M.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Stenger, M. B.; Platts, S. H.; Rukavishnikov, I. V.; Fomina, E. V.; hide

    2015-01-01

    INTRODUCTION Testing of crew responses following long-duration flights has not been previously possible until a minimum of more than 24 hours after landing. As a result, it has not been possible to determine the trend of the early recovery process, nor has it been possible to accurately assess the full impact of the decrements associated with long-duration flight. To overcome these limitations, both the Russian and U.S. programs have implemented joint testing at the Soyuz landing site. This International Space Station research effort has been identified as the functional Field Test, and represents data collect on NASA, Russian, European Space Agency, and Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency crews. RESEARCH The primary goal of this research is to determine functional abilities associated with long-duration space flight crews beginning as soon after landing as possible on the day of landing (typically within 1 to 1.5 hours). This goal has both sensorimotor and cardiovascular elements. To date, a total of 15 subjects have participated in a 'pilot' version of the full 'field test'. The full version of the 'field test' will assess functional sensorimotor measurements included hand/eye coordination, standing from a seated position (sit-to-stand), walking normally without falling, measurement of dynamic visual acuity, discriminating different forces generated with the hands (both strength and ability to judge just noticeable differences of force), standing from a prone position, coordinated walking involving tandem heel-to-toe placement (tested with eyes both closed and open), walking normally while avoiding obstacles of differing heights, and determining postural ataxia while standing (measurement of quiet stance). Sensorimotor performance has been obtained using video records, and data from body worn inertial sensors. The cardiovascular portion of the investigation has measured blood pressure and heart rate during a timed stand test in conjunction with postural ataxia

  4. The Situated HKB Model: how sensorimotor spatial coupling can alter oscillatory brain dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel eAguilera

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Despite the increase both of dynamic and embodied/situated approaches in cognitive science, there is still little research on how coordination dynamics under a closed sensorimotor loop might induce qualitatively different patterns of neural oscillations compared to those found in isolated systems. We take as a departure point the HKB model, a generic model for dynamic coordination between two oscillatory components, which has proven useful for a vast range of applications in cognitive science and whose dynamical properties are well understood. In order to explore the properties of this model under closed sensorimotor conditions we present what we call the situated HKB model: a robotic model that performs a gradient climbing task and whose "brain" is modelled by the HKB equation. We solve the differential equations that define the agent-environment coupling for increasing values of the agent's sensitivity (sensor gain, finding different behavioural strategies. These results are compared with two different models: a decoupled HKB with no sensory input and a passively-coupled HKB that is also decoupled but receives a structured input generated by a situated agent. We can precisely quantify and qualitatively describe how the properties of the system, when studied in coupled conditions, radically change in a manner that cannot be deduced from the decoupled HKB models alone. We also present the notion of neurodynamic signature as the dynamic pattern that correlates with a specific behaviour and we show how only a situated agent can display this signature compared to an agent that simply receives the exact same sensory input.To our knowledge, this is the first analytical solution of the HKB equation in a sensorimotor loop and qualitative and quantitative analytic comparison of spatially coupled vs. decoupled oscillatory controllers. Finally, we discuss the limitations and possible generalization of our model to contemporary neuroscience and philosophy

  5. Sensorimotor and executive function slowing in anesthesiology residents after overnight shifts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, George W; Shankar, Bairavi; Klier, Eliana M; Chuang, Alice Z; El Marjiya-Villarreal, Salma; Nwokolo, Omonele O; Sharma, Aanchal; Sereno, Anne B

    2017-08-01

    Medical residents working overnight call shifts experience sleep deprivation and circadian clock disruption. This leads to deficits in sensorimotor function and increases in workplace accidents. Using quick tablet-based tasks, we investigate whether measureable executive function differences exist following a single overnight call versus routine shift, and whether factors like stress, rest and caffeine affect these measures. A prospective, observational, longitudinal, comparison study was conducted. An academic tertiary hospital's main operating room suite staffed by attending anesthesiologists, anesthesiology residents, anesthesiologist assistants and nurse anesthetists. Subjects were 30 anesthesiology residents working daytime shifts and 30 peers working overnight call shifts from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. Before and after their respective work shifts, residents completed the Stanford Sleepiness Scale (SSS) and the ProPoint and AntiPoint tablet-based tasks. These latter tasks are designed to measure sensorimotor and executive functions, respectively. The SSS is a self-reported measure of sleepiness. Response times (RTs) are measured in the pointing tasks. Call residents exhibited increased RTs across their shifts (post-pre) on both ProPoint (p=0.002) and AntiPoint (pRoutine residents. Increased stress was associated with decreases in AntiPoint RT for Routine (p=0.007), but with greater increases in sleepiness for Call residents (proutine daytime shift residents, (2) sensorimotor slowing is greater in overnight Call residents who drink caffeine habitually, and (3) increased stress during a shift reduces (improves) cognitive RTs during routine daytime but not overnight call shifts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Shutting down sensorimotor interferences after stroke: A proof-of-principle SMR neurofeedback study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Louise Reichert

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Neurofeedback training aims at learning self-regulation of brain activity underlying cognitive, emotional or physiological functions. Despite of promising investigations on neurofeedback as a tool for cognitive rehabilitation in neurological diseases, such as after stroke, there is still a lack of research on feasibility and efficiency of neurofeedback in this field. Methods: The present study aimed at investigating behavioral and electrophysiological effects of 10 sessions of sensorimotor rhythm (SMR neurofeedback in a 74-year-old stroke patient (UG20. Based on previous results in healthy young participants, we hypothesized that SMR neurofeedback leads to a decrease in sensorimotor interferences and improved stimulus processing, reflected by changes in event-related potentials and electrophysiological coherence. To assess whether UG20 benefited from the training as much as healthy persons of a similar age, a healthy control group of N = 10 elderly persons was trained as well. Before and after neurofeedback training, participants took part in a multichannel EEG measurement conducted during a nonverbal and a verbal learning task. Results: Both UG20 and the healthy controls were able to regulate their SMR activity during neurofeedback training. Moreover, in a nonverbal learning task, changes in event-related potentials and coherence were observed after training: UG20 showed a better performance in the nonverbal learning task and a higher P3 amplitude after training than before, and coherence between central and parietal electrodes decreased after training. The control group also showed a behavioral improvement in the nonverbal learning task and tendencies for higher P3 amplitudes and decreased central-parietal coherence after training. Single-case analyses indicated that the changes observed in UG20 were not smaller than the changes in healthy controls. Conclusions: Neurofeedback can be successfully applied in a stroke patient and in

  7. Cortical sensorimotor alterations classify clinical phenotype and putative genotype of spasmodic dysphonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battistella, Giovanni; Fuertinger, Stefan; Fleysher, Lazar; Ozelius, Laurie J.; Simonyan, Kristina

    2017-01-01

    Background Spasmodic dysphonia (SD), or laryngeal dystonia, is a task-specific isolated focal dystonia of unknown causes and pathophysiology. Although functional and structural abnormalities have been described in this disorder, the influence of its different clinical phenotypes and genotypes remains scant, making it difficult to explain SD pathophysiology and to identify potential biomarkers. Methods We used a combination of independent component analysis and linear discriminant analysis of resting-state functional MRI data to investigate brain organization in different SD phenotypes (abductor vs. adductor type) and putative genotypes (familial vs. sporadic cases) and to characterize neural markers for genotype/phenotype categorization. Results We found abnormal functional connectivity within sensorimotor and frontoparietal networks in SD patients compared to healthy individuals as well as phenotype- and genotype-distinct alterations of these networks, involving primary somatosensory, premotor and parietal cortices. The linear discriminant analysis achieved 71% accuracy classifying SD and healthy individuals using connectivity measures in the left inferior parietal and sensorimotor cortex. When categorizing between different forms of SD, the combination of measures from left inferior parietal, premotor and right sensorimotor cortices achieved 81% discriminatory power between familial and sporadic SD cases, whereas the combination of measures from the right superior parietal, primary somatosensory and premotor cortices led to 71% accuracy in the classification of adductor and abductor SD forms. Conclusions Our findings present the first effort to identify and categorize isolated focal dystonia based on its brain functional connectivity profile, which may have a potential impact on the future development of biomarkers for this rare disorder. PMID:27346568

  8. The situated HKB model: how sensorimotor spatial coupling can alter oscillatory brain dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguilera, Miguel; Bedia, Manuel G.; Santos, Bruno A.; Barandiaran, Xabier E.

    2013-01-01

    Despite the increase of both dynamic and embodied/situated approaches in cognitive science, there is still little research on how coordination dynamics under a closed sensorimotor loop might induce qualitatively different patterns of neural oscillations compared to those found in isolated systems. We take as a departure point the Haken-Kelso-Bunz (HKB) model, a generic model for dynamic coordination between two oscillatory components, which has proven useful for a vast range of applications in cognitive science and whose dynamical properties are well understood. In order to explore the properties of this model under closed sensorimotor conditions we present what we call the situated HKB model: a robotic model that performs a gradient climbing task and whose “brain” is modeled by the HKB equation. We solve the differential equations that define the agent-environment coupling for increasing values of the agent's sensitivity (sensor gain), finding different behavioral strategies. These results are compared with two different models: a decoupled HKB with no sensory input and a passively-coupled HKB that is also decoupled but receives a structured input generated by a situated agent. We can precisely quantify and qualitatively describe how the properties of the system, when studied in coupled conditions, radically change in a manner that cannot be deduced from the decoupled HKB models alone. We also present the notion of neurodynamic signature as the dynamic pattern that correlates with a specific behavior and we show how only a situated agent can display this signature compared to an agent that simply receives the exact same sensory input. To our knowledge, this is the first analytical solution of the HKB equation in a sensorimotor loop and qualitative and quantitative analytic comparison of spatially coupled vs. decoupled oscillatory controllers. Finally, we discuss the limitations and possible generalization of our model to contemporary neuroscience and

  9. Shutting Down Sensorimotor Interferences after Stroke: A Proof-of-Principle SMR Neurofeedback Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichert, Johanna L.; Kober, Silvia E.; Schweiger, Daniela; Grieshofer, Peter; Neuper, Christa; Wood, Guilherme

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Neurofeedback training aims at learning self-regulation of brain activity underlying cognitive, emotional or physiological functions. Despite of promising investigations on neurofeedback as a tool for cognitive rehabilitation in neurological diseases, such as after stroke, there is still a lack of research on feasibility and efficiency of neurofeedback in this field. Methods: The present study aimed at investigating behavioral and electrophysiological effects of 10 sessions of sensorimotor rhythm (SMR) neurofeedback in a 74-years-old stroke patient (UG20). Based on previous results in healthy young participants, we hypothesized that SMR neurofeedback leads to a decrease in sensorimotor interferences and improved stimulus processing, reflected by changes in event-related potentials (ERPs) and electrophysiological coherence. To assess whether UG20 benefited from the training as much as healthy persons of a similar age, a healthy control group of N = 10 elderly persons was trained as well. Before and after neurofeedback training, participants took part in a multichannel electroencephalography measurement conducted during a non-verbal and a verbal learning task. Results: Both UG20 and the healthy controls were able to regulate their SMR activity during neurofeedback training. Moreover, in a non-verbal learning task, changes in ERPs and coherence were observed after training: UG20 showed a better performance in the non-verbal learning task and a higher P3 amplitude after training than before, and coherence between central and parietal electrodes decreased after training. The control group also showed a behavioral improvement in the non-verbal learning task and tendencies for higher P3 amplitudes and decreased central-parietal coherence after training. Single-case analyses indicated that the changes observed in UG20 were not smaller than the changes in healthy controls. Conclusion: Neurofeedback can be successfully applied in a stroke patient and in healthy

  10. Individual differences in implicit motor learning: task specificity in sensorimotor adaptation and sequence learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stark-Inbar, Alit; Raza, Meher; Taylor, Jordan A; Ivry, Richard B

    2017-01-01

    In standard taxonomies, motor skills are typically treated as representative of implicit or procedural memory. We examined two emblematic tasks of implicit motor learning, sensorimotor adaptation and sequence learning, asking whether individual differences in learning are correlated between these tasks, as well as how individual differences within each task are related to different performance variables. As a prerequisite, it was essential to establish the reliability of learning measures for each task. Participants were tested twice on a visuomotor adaptation task and on a sequence learning task, either the serial reaction time task or the alternating reaction time task. Learning was evident in all tasks at the group level and reliable at the individual level in visuomotor adaptation and the alternating reaction time task but not in the serial reaction time task. Performance variability was predictive of learning in both domains, yet the relationship was in the opposite direction for adaptation and sequence learning. For the former, faster learning was associated with lower variability, consistent with models of sensorimotor adaptation in which learning rates are sensitive to noise. For the latter, greater learning was associated with higher variability and slower reaction times, factors that may facilitate the spread of activation required to form predictive, sequential associations. Interestingly, learning measures of the different tasks were not correlated. Together, these results oppose a shared process for implicit learning in sensorimotor adaptation and sequence learning and provide insight into the factors that account for individual differences in learning within each task domain. We investigated individual differences in the ability to implicitly learn motor skills. As a prerequisite, we assessed whether individual differences were reliable across test sessions. We found that two commonly used tasks of implicit learning, visuomotor adaptation and the

  11. Sensorimotor difficulties are associated with the severity of autism spectrum conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Penelope Hannant

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Present diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum conditions (ASC include social communication and interaction difficulties, repetitive behaviour and movement, and atypical sensory responsivity. Few studies have explored the influence of motor coordination and sensory responsivity on severity of ASC symptoms. In the current study, we explore whether sensory responsivity and motor coordination differences can account for the severity of autistic behaviours in children with ASC. 36 children took part: 18 (13 male, 5 female with ASC (ages 7-16: mean age 9.93 years and 18 (7 male, 11 female typically developing (TD children (ages 6-12; mean age 9.16 years. Both groups completed a battery of assessments that included motor coordination, sensory responsivity, receptive language, non-verbal reasoning and social communication measures Children with ASC also completed the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule and Autism Diagnostic Interview – Revised.. Results showed that children with ASC scored significantly lower on receptive language, coordination and sensory responsivity and a sensorimotor subscale, Modulation of Activity (MoA compared to the TD group. In the ASC group, MoA significantly predicted ASC severity across all ASC measures; receptive language and sensory responsivity significantly predicted parental reported autism measures; and coordination significantly predicted examiner observed reported scores. Additionally, specific associations were found between the somatosensory perceptive modalities and ASC severity. The results show that sensorimotor skills are associated with severity of ASC symptoms; furthering the need to research sensorimotor integration in ASC and also implying that diagnosis of ASC should also include the assessment of both coordination deficit and atypical sensory responsivity.

  12. The influence of sensorimotor experience on the aesthetic evaluation of dance across the life span.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirsch, Louise P; Cross, Emily S

    2018-01-01

    Understanding how action perception, embodiment, and emotion interact is essential for advancing knowledge about how we perceive and interact with each other in a social world. One tool that has proved particularly useful in the past decade for exploring the relationship between perception, action, and affect is dance. Dance is, in its essence, a rich and multisensory art form that can be used to help answer not only basic questions about social cognition but also questions concerning how aging shapes the relationship between action perception, and the role played by affect, emotion, and aesthetics in social perception. In the present study, we used a 1-week physical and visual dance training paradigm to instill varying degrees of sensorimotor experience among non-dancers from three distinct age groups (early adolescents, young adults, and older adults). Our aim was to begin to build an understanding of how aging influences the relationship between action embodiment and affective (or aesthetic) value, at both brain and behavioral levels. On balance, our results point toward a similar positive effect of sensorimotor training on aesthetic evaluations across the life span on a behavioral level, but to rather different neural substrates supporting implicit aesthetic judgment of dance movements at different life stages. Taken together, the present study contributes valuable first insights into the relationship between sensorimotor experience and affective evaluations across ages, and underscores the utility of dance as a stimulus and training intervention for addressing key questions relevant to human neuroscience as well as the arts and humanities. © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Cortical sensorimotor alterations classify clinical phenotype and putative genotype of spasmodic dysphonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battistella, G; Fuertinger, S; Fleysher, L; Ozelius, L J; Simonyan, K

    2016-10-01

    Spasmodic dysphonia (SD), or laryngeal dystonia, is a task-specific isolated focal dystonia of unknown causes and pathophysiology. Although functional and structural abnormalities have been described in this disorder, the influence of its different clinical phenotypes and genotypes remains scant, making it difficult to explain SD pathophysiology and to identify potential biomarkers. We used a combination of independent component analysis and linear discriminant analysis of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data to investigate brain organization in different SD phenotypes (abductor versus adductor type) and putative genotypes (familial versus sporadic cases) and to characterize neural markers for genotype/phenotype categorization. We found abnormal functional connectivity within sensorimotor and frontoparietal networks in patients with SD compared with healthy individuals as well as phenotype- and genotype-distinct alterations of these networks, involving primary somatosensory, premotor and parietal cortices. The linear discriminant analysis achieved 71% accuracy classifying SD and healthy individuals using connectivity measures in the left inferior parietal and sensorimotor cortices. When categorizing between different forms of SD, the combination of measures from the left inferior parietal, premotor and right sensorimotor cortices achieved 81% discriminatory power between familial and sporadic SD cases, whereas the combination of measures from the right superior parietal, primary somatosensory and premotor cortices led to 71% accuracy in the classification of adductor and abductor SD forms. Our findings present the first effort to identify and categorize isolated focal dystonia based on its brain functional connectivity profile, which may have a potential impact on the future development of biomarkers for this rare disorder. © 2016 EAN.

  14. Sensorimotor control of balance: a Tai Chi solution for balance disorders in older subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsang, William W N; Hui-Chan, Christina W Y

    2008-01-01

    In addition to environmental factors, deteriorating sensorimotor control of balance will predispose older adults to falls. Understanding the aging effects on sensorimotor control of balance performance is important for designing fall prevention programs for older adults. How repeated practice of Tai Chi can improve limb joint proprioception, integration of neural signals in the central nervous system for balance control, and motor output at the level of knee muscles is discussed in this chapter. Our previous studies showed that elderly Tai Chi practitioners performed significantly better than elderly nonpractitioners in (1) knee joint proprioception, (2) reduced or conflicting sensory situations that demand more visual or vestibular contributions, (3) standing balance control after vestibular stimulation without visual input, (4) voluntary weight shifting in different directions within the base of support, (5) single-leg stance during perturbations of the support surface, and (6) knee extensor and flexor muscle strength. In a prospective study, we further showed that 4 weeks of daily Tai Chi practice but not general education produced significant improvement in balance performance. The requirements of Tai Chi for accurate joint positioning and weight transfer involving smooth coordination of neck, trunk, upper and lower limb movements, make it particularly useful for improving the sensorimotor control of balance in the elderly. Because Tai Chi can be practiced any time and anywhere, and is well accepted by older people in both the East and now the West, it is especially suited to be a key component of a low-costing community-based fall prevention program alongside with education about environmental factors.

  15. Functional near-infrared spectroscopy to probe sensorimotor region activation during electrical stimulation-evoked movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthalib, Makii; Ferrari, Marco; Quaresima, Valentina; Kerr, Graham; Perrey, Stephane

    2017-11-07

    This study used non-invasive functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) neuroimaging to monitor bilateral sensorimotor region activation during unilateral voluntary (VOL) and neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES)-evoked movements. In eight healthy male volunteers, fNIRS was used to measure relative changes in oxyhaemoglobin (O 2 Hb) and deoxyhaemoglobin (HHb) concentrations from a cortical sensorimotor region of interest in the left (LH) and right (RH) hemispheres during NMES-evoked and VOL wrist extension movements of the right arm. NMES-evoked movements induced significantly greater activation (increase in O 2 Hb and concomitant decrease in HHb) in the contralateral LH than in the ipsilateral RH (O 2 Hb: 0·44 ± 0·16 μM and 0·25 ± 0·22 μM, P = 0·017; HHb: -0·19 ± 0·10 μM and -0·12 ± 0·09 μM, P = 0·036, respectively) as did VOL movements (0·51 ± 0·24 μΜ and 0·34 ± 0·21 μM, P = 0·031; HHb: -0·18 ± 0·07 μΜ and -0·12 ± 0·04 μΜ, P = 0·05, respectively). There was no significant difference between conditions for O 2 Hb (P = 0·144) and HHb (P = 0·958). fNIRS neuroimaging enables quantification of bilateral sensorimotor regional activation profiles during voluntary and NMES-evoked wrist extension movements. © 2017 Scandinavian Society of Clinical Physiology and Nuclear Medicine. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Which Way is Up? Lessons Learned from Space Shuttle Sensorimotor Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, S. J.; Reschke, M. F.; Harm, D. L.; Paloski, W. H.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2011-01-01

    The Space Shuttle Program provided the opportunity to examine sensorimotor adaptation to space flight in unprecedented numbers of astronauts, including many over multiple missions. Space motion sickness (SMS) severity was highly variable across crewmembers. SMS generally lasted 2-3 days in-flight with approximately 1/3 of crewmembers experiencing moderate to severe symptoms, and decreased incidence in repeat flyers. While SMS has proven difficult to predict from susceptibility to terrestrial analogs, symptoms were alleviated by medications, restriction of early activities, maintaining familiar orientation with respect to the visual environment and maintaining contact cues. Adaptive changes were also reflected by the oculomotor and perceptual disturbances experienced early inflight and by the perceptual and motor coordination problems experienced during re-entry and landing. According to crew self-reports, systematic head movements performed during reentry, as long as paced within one's threshold for motion tolerance, facilitated the early readaptation process. The Shuttle provided early postflight crew access to document the initial performance decrements and time course of recovery. These early postflight measurements were critical to inform the program of risks associated with extending the duration of Shuttle missions. Neurological postflight deficits were documented using a standardized subjective rating by flight surgeons. Computerized dynamic posturography was also implemented as a quantitative means of assessing sensorimotor function to support crew return-to-duty assessments. Towards the end of the Shuttle Program, more emphasis has been placed on mapping physiological changes to functional performance. Future commercial flights will benefit from pre-mission training including exposures to launch and entry G transitions and sensorimotor adaptability assessments. While SMS medication usage will continue to be refined, non-pharmacological countermeasures (e

  17. Development of Vestibular Stochastic Resonance as a Sensorimotor Countermeasure: Improving Otolith Ocular and Motor Task Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Fiedler, Matthew; DeDios,Yiri E.; Galvan, Raquel; Bloomberg, Jacob; Wood, Scott

    2011-01-01

    Astronauts experience disturbances in sensorimotor function after spaceflight during the initial introduction to a gravitational environment, especially after long-duration missions. Stochastic resonance (SR) is a mechanism by which noise can assist and enhance the response of neural systems to relevant, imperceptible sensory signals. We have previously shown that imperceptible electrical stimulation of the vestibular system enhances balance performance while standing on an unstable surface. The goal of our present study is to develop a countermeasure based on vestibular SR that could improve central interpretation of vestibular input and improve motor task responses to mitigate associated risks.

  18. Plasticity of locomotor sensorimotor interactions after peripheral and/or spinal lesions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rossignol, Serge; Barrière, Grégory; Frigon, Alain

    2008-01-01

    The present paper reviews aspects of locomotor sensorimotor interactions by focussing on work performed in spinal cats. We provide a brief overview of spinal locomotion and describe the effects of various types of sensory deprivations (e.g. rhizotomies, and lesions of muscle and cutaneous nerves......) to highlight the spinal neuroplasticity necessary for adapting to sensory loss. Recent work on plastic interactions between reflex pathways that could be responsible for such plasticity, in particular changes in proprioceptive and cutaneous pathways that occur during locomotor training of spinal cats...

  19. Acquisition of a space representation by a naive agent from sensorimotor invariance and proprioceptive compensation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gurvan Le Clec’H

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available In this article, we present a simple agent which learns an internal representation of space without a priori knowledge of its environment, body, or sensors. The learned environment is seen as an internal space representation. This representation is isomorphic to the group of transformations applied to the environment. The model solves certain theoretical and practical issues encountered in previous work in sensorimotor contingency theory. Considering the mathematical description of the internal representation, analysis of its properties and simulations, we prove that this internal representation is equivalent to knowledge of space.

  20. Roundtabling Sustainability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ponte, Stefano

    2014-01-01

    councils’ and ‘sustainability roundtables’ and have been designed around a set of institutional features seeking to establish legitimacy, fend off possible criticism, and ‘sell’ certifications to potential users. The concept of ‘roundtabling’ emphasizes the fitting a variety of commodity...... and procedures to meet ‘good practice’ in standard setting and management. This is opening space for competing initiatives that are less democratic, quicker, and more aligned with industry interests to establish substantial presence in the market for sustainability certifications. These tend to more easily...

  1. Cortical visual impairment

    OpenAIRE

    Koželj, Urša

    2013-01-01

    In this thesis we discuss cortical visual impairment, diagnosis that is in the developed world in first place, since 20 percent of children with blindness or low vision are diagnosed with it. The objectives of the thesis are to define cortical visual impairment and the definition of characters suggestive of the cortical visual impairment as well as to search for causes that affect the growing diagnosis of cortical visual impairment. There are a lot of signs of cortical visual impairment. ...

  2. Inflexible Minds : Impaired Attention Switching in Recent-Onset Schizophrenia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smid, Henderikus G. O. M.; Martens, Sander; de Witte, Marc R.; Bruggeman, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Impairment of sustained attention is assumed to be a core cognitive abnormality in schizophrenia. However, this seems inconsistent with a recent hypothesis that in schizophrenia the implementation of selection (i.e., sustained attention) is intact but the control of selection (i.e., switching the

  3. Sustainable finance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boersma-de Jong, Margreet F.

    2012-01-01

    Presentation for Springschool of Strategy, University of Groningen, 10 October 2012. The role of CSR is to stimulate ethical behaviour, and as a result, mutual trust in society. Advantage of CSR for the company and the evolution of CSR. From CSR to Sustainable Finance: how does CSR influence

  4. Sustainable Procurement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Telles, Pedro; Ølykke, Grith Skovgaard

    2017-01-01

    and within it how sustainable requirements have increased the level of compliance required, particularly regulatory compliance. Compliance was already present in previous EU public procurement frameworks, but its extent on Directive 2014/24/EU leads the authors to consider the current legal framework...

  5. Exergy sustainability.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robinett, Rush D. III (.; ); Wilson, David Gerald; Reed, Alfred W.

    2006-05-01

    Exergy is the elixir of life. Exergy is that portion of energy available to do work. Elixir is defined as a substance held capable of prolonging life indefinitely, which implies sustainability of life. In terms of mathematics and engineering, exergy sustainability is defined as the continuous compensation of irreversible entropy production in an open system with an impedance and capacity-matched persistent exergy source. Irreversible and nonequilibrium thermodynamic concepts are combined with self-organizing systems theories as well as nonlinear control and stability analyses to explain this definition. In particular, this paper provides a missing link in the analysis of self-organizing systems: a tie between irreversible thermodynamics and Hamiltonian systems. As a result of this work, the concept of ''on the edge of chaos'' is formulated as a set of necessary and sufficient conditions for stability and performance of sustainable systems. This interplay between exergy rate and irreversible entropy production rate can be described as Yin and Yang control: the dialectic synthesis of opposing power flows. In addition, exergy is shown to be a fundamental driver and necessary input for sustainable systems, since exergy input in the form of power is a single point of failure for self-organizing, adaptable systems.

  6. Sustainable Buildings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tommerup, Henrik M.; Elle, Morten

    The scientific community agrees that: all countries must drastically and rapidly reduce their CO2 emissions and that energy efficient houses play a decisive role in this. The general attitude at the workshop on Sustainable Buildings was that we face large and serious climate change problems...

  7. Sustainable Entrepreneurship

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schaltegger, Stefan; Beckmann, Markus; Hockerts, Kai

    2018-01-01

    . We also explore the transformation path of the case company, which starts with simple use and then moves to the feedback to core business pattern. By drawing on insights from lead user theory in innovation management and sustainable entrepreneurship, we ground the new concept in extant literature...

  8. Sustainable machining

    CERN Document Server

    2017-01-01

    This book provides an overview on current sustainable machining. Its chapters cover the concept in economic, social and environmental dimensions. It provides the reader with proper ways to handle several pollutants produced during the machining process. The book is useful on both undergraduate and postgraduate levels and it is of interest to all those working with manufacturing and machining technology.

  9. Sustainable processing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Niels Heine

    2004-01-01

    Kristensen_NH and_Beck A: Sustainable processing. In Otto Schmid, Alexander Beck and Ursula Kretzschmar (Editors) (2004): Underlying Principles in Organic and "Low-Input Food" Processing - Literature Survey. Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL, CH-5070 Frick, Switzerland. ISBN 3-906081-58-3...

  10. Architecture Sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avgeriou, Paris; Stal, Michael; Hilliard, Rich

    2013-01-01

    Software architecture is the foundation of software system development, encompassing a system's architects' and stakeholders' strategic decisions. A special issue of IEEE Software is intended to raise awareness of architecture sustainability issues and increase interest and work in the area. The

  11. Sustainable development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boiteux, M.

    2004-01-01

    Marcel Boiteux evokes the results of the work on the sustainable development by the Academie des Sciences Morales et Politiques. This is a vast political programme with the goal of allowing all humanity to live well in growing unity while protecting the environment and favouring economic growth. (author)

  12. Sustainable Development

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Tsegai Berhane Ghebretekle

    Ethiopia is selected as a case study in light of its pace in economic growth ... Interrogating the Economy-First Paradigm in 'Sustainable Development' … 65 .... agreement, since such effective global cooperation on climate change ultimately ..... and foster innovation; reduce inequality within and among countries; make cities.

  13. Sustainable Soesterkwartier

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abrahams, H.; Goosen, H.; Jong, de F.; Sickmann, J.; Prins, D.

    2010-01-01

    The municipality of Amersfoort wants to construct an endurable and sustainable eco-town in the Soesterkwartier neighbourhood, by taking future climate change into account. The impact of climate change at the location of the proposed eco-town was studied by a literature review.

  14. Sustainable Sizing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinette, Kathleen M; Veitch, Daisy

    2016-08-01

    To provide a review of sustainable sizing practices that reduce waste, increase sales, and simultaneously produce safer, better fitting, accommodating products. Sustainable sizing involves a set of methods good for both the environment (sustainable environment) and business (sustainable business). Sustainable sizing methods reduce (1) materials used, (2) the number of sizes or adjustments, and (3) the amount of product unsold or marked down for sale. This reduces waste and cost. The methods can also increase sales by fitting more people in the target market and produce happier, loyal customers with better fitting products. This is a mini-review of methods that result in more sustainable sizing practices. It also reviews and contrasts current statistical and modeling practices that lead to poor fit and sizing. Fit-mapping and the use of cases are two excellent methods suited for creating sustainable sizing, when real people (vs. virtual people) are used. These methods are described and reviewed. Evidence presented supports the view that virtual fitting with simulated people and products is not yet effective. Fit-mapping and cases with real people and actual products result in good design and products that are fit for person, fit for purpose, with good accommodation and comfortable, optimized sizing. While virtual models have been shown to be ineffective for predicting or representing fit, there is an opportunity to improve them by adding fit-mapping data to the models. This will require saving fit data, product data, anthropometry, and demographics in a standardized manner. For this success to extend to the wider design community, the development of a standardized method of data collection for fit-mapping with a globally shared fit-map database is needed. It will enable the world community to build knowledge of fit and accommodation and generate effective virtual fitting for the future. A standardized method of data collection that tests products' fit methodically

  15. Localization of impaired kinesthetic processing post-stroke

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey Michael Kenzie

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Kinesthesia is our sense of limb motion, and allows us to gauge the speed, direction, and amplitude of our movements. Over half of stroke survivors have significant impairments in kinesthesia, which leads to greatly reduced recovery and function in everyday activities. Despite the high reported incidence of kinesthetic deficits after stroke, very little is known about how damage beyond just primary somatosensory areas affects kinesthesia. Stroke provides an ideal model to examine structure-function relationships specific to kinesthetic processing, by comparing lesion location with behavioral impairment. To examine this relationship, we performed voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping and statistical region of interest analyses on a large sample of sub-acute stroke subjects (N=142 and compared kinesthetic performance with stroke lesion location. Subjects with first unilateral, ischemic stroke underwent neuroimaging and a comprehensive robotic kinesthetic assessment (~9 days post-stroke. The robotic exoskeleton measured subjects’ ability to perform a kinesthetic mirror-matching task of the upper limbs without vision. The robot moved the stroke-affected arm and subjects’ mirror-matched the movement with the unaffected arm. We found that lesions both within and outside primary somatosensory cortex were associated with significant kinesthetic impairments. Further, sub-components of kinesthesia were associated with different lesion locations. Impairments in speed perception were primarily associated with lesions to the right post-central and supramarginal gyri whereas impairments in amplitude of movement perception were primarily associated with lesions in the right pre-central gyrus, anterior insula, and superior temporal gyrus. Impairments in perception of movement direction were associated with lesions to bilateral post-central and supramarginal gyri, right superior temporal gyrus and parietal operculum. All measures of impairment shared a common

  16. Localization of Impaired Kinesthetic Processing Post-stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenzie, Jeffrey M; Semrau, Jennifer A; Findlater, Sonja E; Yu, Amy Y; Desai, Jamsheed A; Herter, Troy M; Hill, Michael D; Scott, Stephen H; Dukelow, Sean P

    2016-01-01

    Kinesthesia is our sense of limb motion, and allows us to gauge the speed, direction, and amplitude of our movements. Over half of stroke survivors have significant impairments in kinesthesia, which leads to greatly reduced recovery and function in everyday activities. Despite the high reported incidence of kinesthetic deficits after stroke, very little is known about how damage beyond just primary somatosensory areas affects kinesthesia. Stroke provides an ideal model to examine structure-function relationships specific to kinesthetic processing, by comparing lesion location with behavioral impairment. To examine this relationship, we performed voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping and statistical region of interest analyses on a large sample of sub-acute stroke subjects ( N = 142) and compared kinesthetic performance with stroke lesion location. Subjects with first unilateral, ischemic stroke underwent neuroimaging and a comprehensive robotic kinesthetic assessment (~9 days post-stroke). The robotic exoskeleton measured subjects' ability to perform a kinesthetic mirror-matching task of the upper limbs without vision. The robot moved the stroke-affected arm and subjects' mirror-matched the movement with the unaffected arm. We found that lesions both within and outside primary somatosensory cortex were associated with significant kinesthetic impairments. Further, sub-components of kinesthesia were associated with different lesion locations. Impairments in speed perception were primarily associated with lesions to the right post-central and supramarginal gyri whereas impairments in amplitude of movement perception were primarily associated with lesions in the right pre-central gyrus, anterior insula, and superior temporal gyrus. Impairments in perception of movement direction were associated with lesions to bilateral post-central and supramarginal gyri, right superior temporal gyrus and parietal operculum. All measures of impairment shared a common association with

  17. Deontological Dilemma Response Tendencies and Sensorimotor Representations of Harm to Others

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Christov-Moore

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The dual process model of moral decision-making suggests that decisions to reject causing harm on moral dilemmas (where causing harm saves lives reflect concern for others. Recently, some theorists have suggested such decisions actually reflect self-focused concern about causing harm, rather than witnessing others suffering. We examined brain activity while participants witnessed needles pierce another person’s hand, versus similar non-painful stimuli. More than a month later, participants completed moral dilemmas where causing harm either did or did not maximize outcomes. We employed process dissociation to independently assess harm-rejection (deontological and outcome-maximization (utilitarian response tendencies. Activity in the posterior inferior frontal cortex (pIFC while participants witnessed others in pain predicted deontological, but not utilitarian, response tendencies. Previous brain stimulation studies have shown that the pIFC seems crucial for sensorimotor representations of observed harm. Hence, these findings suggest that deontological response tendencies reflect genuine other-oriented concern grounded in sensorimotor representations of harm.

  18. Deontological Dilemma Response Tendencies and Sensorimotor Representations of Harm to Others.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christov-Moore, Leonardo; Conway, Paul; Iacoboni, Marco

    2017-01-01

    The dual process model of moral decision-making suggests that decisions to reject causing harm on moral dilemmas (where causing harm saves lives) reflect concern for others. Recently, some theorists have suggested such decisions actually reflect self-focused concern about causing harm, rather than witnessing others suffering. We examined brain activity while participants witnessed needles pierce another person's hand, versus similar non-painful stimuli. More than a month later, participants completed moral dilemmas where causing harm either did or did not maximize outcomes. We employed process dissociation to independently assess harm-rejection (deontological) and outcome-maximization (utilitarian) response tendencies. Activity in the posterior inferior frontal cortex (pIFC) while participants witnessed others in pain predicted deontological, but not utilitarian, response tendencies. Previous brain stimulation studies have shown that the pIFC seems crucial for sensorimotor representations of observed harm. Hence, these findings suggest that deontological response tendencies reflect genuine other-oriented concern grounded in sensorimotor representations of harm.

  19. Assessment of sensorimotor cortical representation asymmetries and motor skills in violin players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwenkreis, Peter; El Tom, Susan; Ragert, Patrick; Pleger, Burkhard; Tegenthoff, Martin; Dinse, Hubert R

    2007-12-01

    As a model for use-dependent plasticity, the brains of professional musicians have been extensively studied to examine structural and functional adaptation to unique requirements of skilled performance. Here we provide a combination of data on motor performance and hand representation in the primary motor and somatosensory cortex of professional violin players, with the aim of assessing possible behavioural consequences of sensorimotor cortical asymmetries. We studied 15 healthy right-handed professional violin players and 35 healthy nonmusician controls. Motor and somatosensory cortex asymmetry was assessed by recording the motor output map after transcranial magnetic stimulation from a small hand muscle, and by dipole source localization of somatosensory evoked potentials after electrical stimulation of the median and ulnar nerves. Motor performance was examined using a series of standardized motor tasks covering different aspects of hand function. Violin players showed a significant right-larger-than-left asymmetry of the motor and somatosensory cortex, whereas nonmusician controls showed no significant interhemispheric difference. The amount of asymmetry in the motor and somatosensory cortices of musicians was significantly correlated. At the behavioural level, motor performance did not significantly differ between musicians and nonmusicians. The results support a use-dependent enlargement of the left hand representation in the sensorimotor cortex of violin players. However, these cortical asymmetries were not paralleled by accompanying altered asymmetries at a behavioural level, suggesting that the reorganisation might be task-specific and does not lead to improved motor abilities in general.

  20. Impulsivity in Parkinson’s Disease Is Associated With Alterations in Affective and Sensorimotor Striatal Networks

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    Marit F. L. Ruitenberg

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available A subset of patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD experiences problems with impulse control, characterized by a loss of voluntary control over impulses, drives, or temptations regarding excessive hedonic behavior. The present study aimed to better understand the neural basis of such impulse control disorders (ICDs in PD. We collected resting-state functional connectivity and structural MRI data from 21 PD patients with ICDs and 30 patients without such disorders. To assess impulsivity, all patients completed the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale and performed an information-gathering task. MRI results demonstrated substantial differences in neural characteristics between PD patients with and without ICDs. Results showed that impulsivity was linked to alterations in affective basal ganglia circuitries. Specifically, reduced frontal–striatal connectivity and GPe volume were associated with more impulsivity. We suggest that these changes affect decision making and result in a preference for risky or inappropriate actions. Results further showed that impulsivity was linked to alterations in sensorimotor striatal networks. Enhanced connectivity within this network and larger putamen volume were associated with more impulsivity. We propose that these changes affect sensorimotor processing such that patients have a greater propensity to act. Our findings suggest that the two mechanisms jointly contribute to impulsive behaviors in PD.

  1. Enhanced inter-subject brain computer interface with associative sensorimotor oscillations.

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    Saha, Simanto; Ahmed, Khawza I; Mostafa, Raqibul; Khandoker, Ahsan H; Hadjileontiadis, Leontios

    2017-02-01

    Electroencephalography (EEG) captures electrophysiological signatures of cortical events from the scalp with high-dimensional electrode montages. Usually, excessive sources produce outliers and potentially affect the actual event related sources. Besides, EEG manifests inherent inter-subject variability of the brain dynamics, at the resting state and/or under the performance of task(s), caused probably due to the instantaneous fluctuation of psychophysiological states. A wavelet coherence (WC) analysis for optimally selecting associative inter-subject channels is proposed here and is being used to boost performances of motor imagery (MI)-based inter-subject brain computer interface (BCI). The underlying hypothesis is that optimally associative inter-subject channels can reduce the effects of outliers and, thus, eliminate dissimilar cortical patterns. The proposed approach has been tested on the dataset IVa from BCI competition III, including EEG data acquired from five healthy subjects who were given visual cues to perform 280 trials of MI for the right hand and right foot. Experimental results have shown increased classification accuracy (81.79%) using the WC-based selected 16 channels compared to the one (56.79%) achieved using all the available 118 channels. The associative channels lie mostly around the sensorimotor regions of the brain, reinforced by the previous literature, describing spatial brain dynamics during sensorimotor oscillations. Apparently, the proposed approach paves the way for optimised EEG channel selection that could boost further the efficiency and real-time performance of BCI systems.

  2. The animal sensorimotor organization: a challenge for the environmental complexity thesis.

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    Keijzer, Fred; Arnellos, Argyris

    2017-01-01

    Godfrey-Smith's environmental complexity thesis (ECT) is most often applied to multicellular animals and the complexity of their macroscopic environments to explain how cognition evolved. We think that the ECT may be less suited to explain the origins of the animal bodily organization, including this organization's potentiality for dealing with complex macroscopic environments. We argue that acquiring the fundamental sensorimotor features of the animal body may be better explained as a consequence of dealing with internal bodily-rather than environmental complexity. To press and elucidate this option, we develop the notion of an animal sensorimotor organization (ASMO) that derives from an internal coordination account for the evolution of early nervous systems. The ASMO notion is a reply to the question how a collection of single cells can become integrated such that the resulting multicellular organization becomes sensitive to and can manipulate macroscopic features of both the animal body and its environment. In this account, epithelial contractile tissues play the central role in the organization behind complex animal bodies. In this paper, we relate the ASMO concept to recent work on epithelia, which provides empirical evidence that supports central assumptions behind the ASMO notion. Second, we discuss to what extent the notion applies to basic animal architectures, exemplified by sponges and jellyfish. We conclude that the features exhibited by the ASMO are plausibly explained by internal constraints acting on and within this multicellular organization, providing a challenge for the role the ECT plays in this context.

  3. Repetitive tactile stimulation changes resting-state functional connectivity – implications for treatment of sensorimotor decline

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    Frank eFreyer

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Neurological disorders and physiological aging can lead to a decline of perceptual abilities. In contrast to the conventional therapeutic approach that comprises intensive training and practicing, passive repetitive sensory stimulation (RSS has recently gained increasing attention as an alternative to countervail the sensory decline by improving perceptual abilities without the need of active participation. A particularly effective type of high-frequency RSS, utilizing Hebbian learning principles, improves perceptual acuity as well as sensorimotor functions and has been successfully applied to treat chronic stroke patients and elderly subjects. High-frequency RSS has been shown to induce plastic changes of somatosensory cortex such as representational map reorganization, but its impact on the brain’s ongoing network activity and resting-state functional connectivity has not been investigated so far. Here, we applied high-frequency RSS in healthy human subjects and analyzed resting state Electroencephalography (EEG functional connectivity patterns before and after RSS by means of imaginary coherency (ImCoh, a frequency-specific connectivity measure which is known to reduce overestimation biases due to volume conduction and common reference. Thirty minutes of passive high-frequency RSS lead to significant ImCoh-changes of the resting state mu-rhythm in the individual upper alpha frequency band within distributed sensory and motor cortical areas. These stimulation induced distributed functional connectivity changes likely underlie the previously observed improvement in sensorimotor integration.

  4. Imaging auditory representations of song and syllables in populations of sensorimotor neurons essential to vocal communication.

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    Peh, Wendy Y X; Roberts, Todd F; Mooney, Richard

    2015-04-08

    Vocal communication depends on the coordinated activity of sensorimotor neurons important to vocal perception and production. How vocalizations are represented by spatiotemporal activity patterns in these neuronal populations remains poorly understood. Here we combined intracellular recordings and two-photon calcium imaging in anesthetized adult zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) to examine how learned birdsong and its component syllables are represented in identified projection neurons (PNs) within HVC, a sensorimotor region important for song perception and production. These experiments show that neighboring HVC PNs can respond at markedly different times to song playback and that different syllables activate spatially intermingled PNs within a local (~100 μm) region of HVC. Moreover, noise correlations were stronger between PNs that responded most strongly to the same syllable and were spatially graded within and between classes of PNs. These findings support a model in which syllabic and temporal features of song are represented by spatially intermingled PNs functionally organized into cell- and syllable-type networks within local spatial scales in HVC. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/355589-17$15.00/0.

  5. Drawing and writing: An ALE meta-analysis of sensorimotor activations.

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    Yuan, Ye; Brown, Steven

    2015-08-01

    Drawing and writing are the two major means of creating what are referred to as "images", namely visual patterns on flat surfaces. They share many sensorimotor processes related to visual guidance of hand movement, resulting in the formation of visual shapes associated with pictures and words. However, while the human capacity to draw is tens of thousands of years old, the capacity for writing is only a few thousand years old, and widespread literacy is quite recent. In order to compare the neural activations for drawing and writing, we conducted two activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analyses for these two bodies of neuroimaging literature. The results showed strong overlap in the activation profiles, especially in motor areas (motor cortex, frontal eye fields, supplementary motor area, cerebellum, putamen) and several parts of the posterior parietal cortex. A distinction was found in the left posterior parietal cortex, with drawing showing a preference for a ventral region and writing a dorsal region. These results demonstrate that drawing and writing employ the same basic sensorimotor networks but that some differences exist in parietal areas involved in spatial processing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Reducing Stereotype Threat With Embodied Triggers: A Case of Sensorimotor-Mental Congruence.

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    Chalabaev, Aïna; Radel, Rémi; Masicampo, E J; Dru, Vincent

    2016-08-01

    In four experiments, we tested whether embodied triggers may reduce stereotype threat. We predicted that left-side sensorimotor inductions would increase cognitive performance under stereotype threat, because such inductions are linked to avoidance motivation among right-handers. This sensorimotor-mental congruence hypothesis rests on regulatory fit research showing that stereotype threat may be reduced by avoidance-oriented interventions, and motor congruence research showing positive effects when two parameters of a motor action activate the same motivational system (avoidance or approach). Results indicated that under stereotype threat, cognitive performance was higher when participants contracted their left hand (Study 1) or when the stimuli were presented on the left side of the visual field (Studies 2-4), as compared with right-hand contraction or right-side visual stimulation. These results were observed on math (Studies 1, 2, and 4) and Stroop (Study 3) performance. An indirect effect of congruence on math performance through subjective fluency was also observed. © 2016 by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Inc.

  7. Utilizing Virtual Reality to Understand Athletic Performance and Underlying Sensorimotor Processing

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    Toshitaka Kimura

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In behavioral sports sciences, knowledge of athletic performance and underlying sensorimotor processing remains limited, because most data is obtained in the laboratory. In laboratory experiments we can strictly control the measurement conditions, but the action we can target may be limited and differ from actual sporting action. Thus, the obtained data is potentially unrealistic. We propose using virtual reality (VR technology to compensate for the lack of actual reality. We have developed a head mounted display (HMD-based VR system for application to baseball batting where the user can experience hitting a pitch in a virtual baseball stadium. The batter and the bat movements are measured using nine-axis inertial sensors attached to various parts of the body and bat, and they are represented by a virtual avatar in real time. The pitched balls are depicted by computer graphics based on previously recorded ball trajectories and are thrown in time with the motion of a pitcher avatar based on simultaneously recorded motion capture data. The ball bounces depending on its interaction with the bat. In a preliminary measurement where the VR system was combined with measurement equipment we found some differences between the behavioral and physiological data (i.e., the body movements and respiration of experts and beginners and between the types of pitches during virtual batting. This VR system with a sufficiently real visual experience will provide novel findings as regards athletic performance that were formerly hard to obtain and allow us to elucidate their sensorimotor processing in detail.

  8. Loss of laterality in chronic cocaine users: an fMRI investigation of sensorimotor control.

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    Hanlon, Colleen A; Wesley, Michael J; Roth, Alicia J; Miller, Mack D; Porrino, Linda J

    2010-01-30

    Movement disturbances are often overlooked consequences of chronic cocaine abuse. The purpose of this study was to systematically investigate sensorimotor performance in chronic cocaine users and characterize changes in brain activity among movement-related regions of interest (ROIs) in these users. Functional magnetic resonance imaging data were collected from 14 chronic cocaine users and 15 age- and gender-matched controls. All participants performed a sequential finger-tapping task with their dominant, right hand interleaved with blocks of rest. For each participant, percent signal change from rest was calculated for seven movement-related ROIs in both the left and right hemisphere. Cocaine users had significantly longer reaction times and higher error rates than controls. Whereas the controls used a left-sided network of motor-related brain areas to perform the task, cocaine users activated a less lateralized pattern of brain activity. Users had significantly more activity in the ipsilateral (right) motor and premotor cortical areas, anterior cingulate cortex and the putamen than controls. These data demonstrate that, in addition to the cognitive and affective consequences of chronic cocaine abuse, there are also pronounced alterations in sensorimotor control in these individuals, which are associated with functional alterations throughout movement-related neural networks.

  9. Assessment of a Newly Developed, Active Pneumatic-Driven, Sensorimotor Test and Training Device

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    Wolfram Haslinger

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The sensorimotor system (SMS plays an important role in sports and in every day movement. Several tools for assessment and training have been designed. Many of them are directed to specific populations, and have major shortcomings due to the training effect or safety. The aim of the present study was to design and assess a dynamic sensorimotor test and training device that can be adjusted for all levels of performance. The novel pneumatic-driven mechatronic device can guide the trainee, allow independent movements or disrupt the individual with unpredicted perturbations while standing on a platform. The test-reliability was evaluated using intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC. Subjects were required to balance their center of pressure (COP in a target circle (TITC. The time in TITC and the COP error (COPe were recorded for analysis. The results of 22 males and 14 females (23.7 ± 2.6 years showed good to excellent test–retest reliability. The newly designed Active Balance System (ABS was then compared with the Biodex Balance System SD® (BBS. The results of 15 females, 14 males (23.4 ± 1.6 years showed modest correlation in static and acceptable correlation in dynamic conditions, suggesting that ABS could be a reliable and comparable tool for dynamic balance assessments.

  10. Sensorimotor modulation of mood and depression: In search of an optimal mode of stimulation

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    RESIT eCANBEYLI

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Depression involves a dysfunction in an affective fronto-limbic circuitry including the prefrontal cortices, several limbic structures including the cingulate cortex, the amygdala and the hippocampus as well as the basal ganglia. A major emphasis of research on the etiology and treatment of mood disorders has been to assess the impact of centrally generated (top-down processes impacting the affective fronto-limbic circuitry. The present review shows that peripheral (bottom-up unipolar stimulation via the visual and the auditory modalities as well as by physical exercise modulates mood and depressive symptoms in humans and animals and activates the same central affective neurocircuitry involved in depression. It is proposed that the amygdala serves as a gateway by articulating the mood regulatory sensorimotor stimulation with the central affective circuitry by emotionally labeling and mediating the storage of such emotional events in long-term memory. Since both amelioration and aggravation of mood is shown to be possible by unipolar stimulation, the review suggests that a psychophysical assessment of mood modulation by multi-modal stimulation may uncover mood ameliorative synergisms and serve as adjunctive treatment for depression. Thus, the integrative review not only emphasizes the relevance of investigating the optimal levels of mood regulatory sensorimotor stimulation, but also provides a conceptual springboard for related future research.

  11. Expectation violations in sensorimotor sequences: shifting from LTM-based attentional selection to visual search.

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    Foerster, Rebecca M; Schneider, Werner X

    2015-03-01

    Long-term memory (LTM) delivers important control signals for attentional selection. LTM expectations have an important role in guiding the task-driven sequence of covert attention and gaze shifts, especially in well-practiced multistep sensorimotor actions. What happens when LTM expectations are disconfirmed? Does a sensory-based visual-search mode of attentional selection replace the LTM-based mode? What happens when prior LTM expectations become valid again? We investigated these questions in a computerized version of the number-connection test. Participants clicked on spatially distributed numbered shapes in ascending order while gaze was recorded. Sixty trials were performed with a constant spatial arrangement. In 20 consecutive trials, either numbers, shapes, both, or no features switched position. In 20 reversion trials, participants worked on the original arrangement. Only the sequence-affecting number switches elicited slower clicking, visual search-like scanning, and lower eye-hand synchrony. The effects were neither limited to the exchanged numbers nor to the corresponding actions. Thus, expectation violations in a well-learned sensorimotor sequence cause a regression from LTM-based attentional selection to visual search beyond deviant-related actions and locations. Effects lasted for several trials and reappeared during reversion. © 2015 New York Academy of Sciences.

  12. Perceptual expertise: can sensorimotor experience change holistic processing and left-side bias?

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    Tso, Ricky Van-yip; Au, Terry Kit-fong; Hsiao, Janet Hui-wen

    2014-09-01

    Holistic processing and left-side bias are both behavioral markers of expert face recognition. By contrast, expert recognition of characters in Chinese orthography involves left-side bias but reduced holistic processing, although faces and Chinese characters share many visual properties. Here, we examined whether this reduction in holistic processing of Chinese characters can be better explained by writing experience than by reading experience. Compared with Chinese nonreaders, Chinese readers who had limited writing experience showed increased holistic processing, whereas Chinese readers who could write characters fluently showed reduced holistic processing. This result suggests that writing and sensorimotor experience can modulate holistic-processing effects and that the reduced holistic processing observed in expert Chinese readers may depend mostly on writing experience. However, both expert writers and writers with limited experience showed similarly stronger left-side bias than novices did in processing mirror-symmetric Chinese characters; left-side bias may therefore be a robust expertise marker for object recognition that is uninfluenced by sensorimotor experience. © The Author(s) 2014.

  13. Sensorimotor Grounding of Musical Embodiment and the Role of Prediction: A Review.

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    Maes, Pieter-Jan

    2016-01-01

    In a previous article, we reviewed empirical evidence demonstrating action-based effects on music perception to substantiate the musical embodiment thesis (Maes et al., 2014). Evidence was largely based on studies demonstrating that music perception automatically engages motor processes, or that body states/movements influence music perception. Here, we argue that more rigorous evidence is needed before any decisive conclusion in favor of a "radical" musical embodiment thesis can be posited. In the current article, we provide a focused review of recent research to collect further evidence for the "radical" embodiment thesis that music perception is a dynamic process firmly rooted in the natural disposition of sounds and the human auditory and motor system. Though, we emphasize that, on top of these natural dispositions, long-term processes operate, rooted in repeated sensorimotor experiences and leading to learning, prediction, and error minimization. This approach sheds new light on the development of musical repertoires, and may refine our understanding of action-based effects on music perception as discussed in our previous article (Maes et al., 2014). Additionally, we discuss two of our recent empirical studies demonstrating that music performance relies on similar principles of sensorimotor dynamics and predictive processing.

  14. Mirroring "meaningful" actions: sensorimotor learning modulates imitation of goal-directed actions.

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    Catmur, Caroline; Heyes, Cecilia

    2017-06-19

    Imitation is important in the development of social and technological skills throughout the lifespan. Experiments investigating the acquisition and modulation of imitation (and of its proposed neural substrate, the mirror neuron system) have produced evidence that the capacity for imitation depends on associative learning in which connections are formed between sensory and motor representations of actions. However, evidence that the development of imitation depends on associative learning has been found only for non-goal-directed actions. One reason for the lack of research on goal-directed actions is that imitation of such actions is commonly confounded with the tendency to respond in a spatially compatible manner. However, since the most prominent account of mirror neuron function, and hence of imitation, suggests that these cells encode goal-directed actions, it is important to establish whether sensorimotor learning can also modulate imitation of goal-directed actions. Experiment 1 demonstrated that imitation of goal-directed grasping can be measured while controlling for spatial compatibility, and Experiment 2 showed that this imitation effect can be modulated by sensorimotor training. Together these data support the hypothesis that the capacity for behavioural imitation, and the properties of the mirror neuron system, are constructed in the course of development through associative learning.

  15. Long-range memory and non-Markov statistical effects in human sensorimotor coordination

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    M. Yulmetyev, Renat; Emelyanova, Natalya; Hänggi, Peter; Gafarov, Fail; Prokhorov, Alexander

    2002-12-01

    In this paper, the non-Markov statistical processes and long-range memory effects in human sensorimotor coordination are investigated. The theoretical basis of this study is the statistical theory of non-stationary discrete non-Markov processes in complex systems (Phys. Rev. E 62, 6178 (2000)). The human sensorimotor coordination was experimentally studied by means of standard dynamical tapping test on the group of 32 young peoples with tap numbers up to 400. This test was carried out separately for the right and the left hand according to the degree of domination of each brain hemisphere. The numerical analysis of the experimental results was made with the help of power spectra of the initial time correlation function, the memory functions of low orders and the first three points of the statistical spectrum of non-Markovity parameter. Our observations demonstrate, that with the regard to results of the standard dynamic tapping-test it is possible to divide all examinees into five different dynamic types. We have introduced the conflict coefficient to estimate quantitatively the order-disorder effects underlying life systems. The last one reflects the existence of disbalance between the nervous and the motor human coordination. The suggested classification of the neurophysiological activity represents the dynamic generalization of the well-known neuropsychological types and provides the new approach in a modern neuropsychology.

  16. Sensorimotor polyneuropathy

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    ... neuropathy , including chemotherapy Guillain-Barré syndrome Hereditary neuropathy HIV/AIDS Low thyroid Parkinson disease Vitamin deficiency ( vitamins B12 , B1 , and E) Zika virus infection Symptoms Symptoms may include any of the following: Decreased ...

  17. Factors associated with cervical kinematic impairments in patients with neck pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treleaven, Julia; Chen, Xiaoqi; Sarig Bahat, Hilla

    2016-04-01

    Cervical kinematics have functional relevance and are important for assessment and management in patients with neck disorders. A better understanding of factors that might influence cervical kinematics is required. The aim of this study was to determine any relationships between altered kinematics to the symptoms and signs of sensorimotor impairments, neck pain and disability and fear of neck motion in people with neck pain. Kinematics were measured in 39 subjects with chronic neck pain using a customized virtual reality system. Range of cervical motion, mean and peak velocity, time to peak velocity percentage, number of velocity peaks and accuracy were derived. Correlations between these measures to self-reported (neck pain intensity, disability, fear of motion, dizziness, visual disturbances) and sensorimotor measures and regression analyses were conducted. Range and velocity of motion of cervical rotation appeared to be most related to visual disturbances and pain or dynamic balance. Nevertheless these relationships only explained about 30% of the variance of each measure. Signs and symptoms of sensorimotor dysfunction should be considered and monitored in the management of altered cervical rotation kinematics in patients with chronic neck disorders. Future research should consider the effects of addressing these factors on neck kinematics and vice versa to aid functional recovery in those with neck pain. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Using Tests Designed to Measure Individual Sensorimotor Subsystem Perfomance to Predict Locomotor Adaptability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, B. T.; Caldwell, E. E.; Batson, C. D.; Guined, J. R.; DeDios, Y. E.; Stepanyan, V.; Gadd, N. E.; Szecsy, D. L.; Mulavara, A. P.; Seidler, R. D.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor disturbances during the initial exposure to microgravity and during the readapation phase following a return to a gravitational environment. These alterations may lead to disruption in the ability to perform mission critical functions during and after these gravitational transitions. Astronauts show significant inter-subject variation in adaptive capability following gravitational transitions. The way each individual's brain synthesizes the available visual, vestibular and somatosensory information is likely the basis for much of the variation. Identifying the presence of biases in each person's use of information available from these sensorimotor subsystems and relating it to their ability to adapt to a novel locomotor task will allow us to customize a training program designed to enhance sensorimotor adaptability. Eight tests are being used to measure sensorimotor subsystem performance. Three of these use measures of body sway to characterize balance during varying sensorimotor challenges. The effect of vision is assessed by repeating conditions with eyes open and eyes closed. Standing on foam, or on a support surface that pitches to maintain a constant ankle angle provide somatosensory challenges. Information from the vestibular system is isolated when vision is removed and the support surface is compromised, and it is challenged when the tasks are done while the head is in motion. The integration and dominance of visual information is assessed in three additional tests. The Rod & Frame Test measures the degree to which a subject's perception of the visual vertical is affected by the orientation of a tilted frame in the periphery. Locomotor visual dependence is determined by assessing how much an oscillating virtual visual world affects a treadmill-walking subject. In the third of the visual manipulation tests, subjects walk an obstacle course while wearing up-down reversing prisms. The two remaining tests include direct

  19. Clinical application of computerized evaluation and re-education biofeedback prototype for sensorimotor control of the hand in stroke patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Hsiu-Yun; Lin, Cheng-Feng; Su, Fong-Chin; Kuo, Huan-Ting; Chiu, Haw-Yen; Kuo, Li-Chieh

    2012-05-09

    Hemianaesthesia patients usually exhibit awkward and inefficient finger movements of the affected hands. Conventionally, most interventions emphasize the improvement of motor deficits, but rarely address sensory capability and sensorimotor control following stroke. Thus it is critical for stroke patients with sensory problems to incorporate appropriate strategies for dealing with sensory impairment, into traditional hand function rehabilitation programs. In this study, we used a custom-designed computerized evaluation and re-education biofeedback (CERB) prototype to analyze hand grasp performances, and monitor the training effects on hand coordination for stroke patients with sensory disturbance and without motor deficiency. The CERB prototype was constructed to detect momentary pinch force modulation for 14 sub-acute and chronic stroke patients with sensory deficiency and 14 healthy controls. The other ten chronic stroke patients (ranges of stroke period: 6-60 months) were recruited to investigate the effects of 4-weeks computerized biofeedback treatments on the hand control ability. The biofeedback procedures provide visual and auditory cues to the participants when the interactive force of hand-to-object exceeded the target latitude in a pinch-up-holding task to trigger optimal motor strategy. Follow-up measurements were conducted one month after training. The hand sensibility, grip forces and results of hand functional tests were recorded and analyzed. The affected hands of the 14 predominant sensory stroke patients exhibited statistically significant elevation in the magnitude of peak pinch force (p = 0.033) in pinching and lifting-up tasks, and poor results for hand function tests (p = 0.005) than sound hands did. In addition, the sound hands of patients were less efficient in force modulation (p = 0.009) than the hands of healthy subjects were. Training with the biofeedback system produced significant improvements in grip force modulation (p = 0.020) and

  20. Clinical application of computerized evaluation and re-education biofeedback prototype for sensorimotor control of the hand in stroke patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsu Hsiu-Yun

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hemianaesthesia patients usually exhibit awkward and inefficient finger movements of the affected hands. Conventionally, most interventions emphasize the improvement of motor deficits, but rarely address sensory capability and sensorimotor control following stroke. Thus it is critical for stroke patients with sensory problems to incorporate appropriate strategies for dealing with sensory impairment, into traditional hand function rehabilitation programs. In this study, we used a custom-designed computerized evaluation and re-education biofeedback (CERB prototype to analyze hand grasp performances, and monitor the training effects on hand coordination for stroke patients with sensory disturbance and without motor deficiency. Methods The CERB prototype was constructed to detect momentary pinch force modulation for 14 sub-acute and chronic stroke patients with sensory deficiency and 14 healthy controls. The other ten chronic stroke patients (ranges of stroke period: 6–60 months were recruited to investigate the effects of 4-weeks computerized biofeedback treatments on the hand control ability. The biofeedback procedures provide visual and auditory cues to the participants when the interactive force of hand-to-object exceeded the target latitude in a pinch-up-holding task to trigger optimal motor strategy. Follow-up measurements were conducted one month after training. The hand sensibility, grip forces and results of hand functional tests were recorded and analyzed. Results The affected hands of the 14 predominant sensory stroke patients exhibited statistically significant elevation in the magnitude of peak pinch force (p = 0.033 in pinching and lifting-up tasks, and poor results for hand function tests (p = 0.005 than sound hands did. In addition, the sound hands of patients were less efficient in force modulation (p = 0.009 than the hands of healthy subjects were. Training with the biofeedback system produced

  1. Repetitive long-term hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT administered after experimental traumatic brain injury in rats induces significant remyelination and a recovery of sensorimotor function.

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    Klaus Kraitsy

    Full Text Available Cells in the central nervous system rely almost exclusively on aerobic metabolism. Oxygen deprivation, such as injury-associated ischemia, results in detrimental apoptotic and necrotic cell loss. There is evidence that repetitive hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT improves outcomes in traumatic brain-injured patients. However, there are no experimental studies investigating the mechanism of repetitive long-term HBOT treatment-associated protective effects. We have therefore analysed the effect of long-term repetitive HBOT treatment on brain trauma-associated cerebral modulations using the lateral fluid percussion model for rats. Trauma-associated neurological impairment regressed significantly in the group of HBO-treated animals within three weeks post trauma. Evaluation of somatosensory-evoked potentials indicated a possible remyelination of neurons in the injured hemisphere following HBOT. This presumption was confirmed by a pronounced increase in myelin basic protein isoforms, PLP expression as well as an increase in myelin following three weeks of repetitive HBO treatment. Our results indicate that protective long-term HBOT effects following brain injury is mediated by a pronounced remyelination in the ipsilateral injured cortex as substantiated by the associated recovery of sensorimotor function.

  2. Neurodegeneration caused by expression of human truncated tau leads to progressive neurobehavioural impairment in transgenic rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hrnkova, Miroslava; Zilka, Norbert; Minichova, Zuzana; Koson, Peter; Novak, Michal

    2007-01-26

    Human truncated tau protein is an active constituent of the neurofibrillary degeneration in sporadic Alzheimer's disease. We have shown that modified tau protein, when expressed as a transgene in rats, induced AD characteristic tau cascade consisting of tau hyperphosphorylation, formation of argyrophilic tangles and sarcosyl-insoluble tau complexes. These pathological changes led to the functional impairment characterized by a variety of neurobehavioural symptoms. In the present study we have focused on the behavioural alterations induced by transgenic expression of human truncated tau. Transgenic rats underwent a battery of behavioural tests involving cognitive- and sensorimotor-dependent tasks accompanied with neurological assessment at the age of 4.5, 6 and 9 months. Behavioural examination of these rats showed altered spatial navigation in Morris water maze resulting in less time spent in target quadrant (popen field was not influenced by transgene expression. However beam walking test revealed that transgenic rats developed progressive sensorimotor disturbances related to the age of tested animals. The disturbances were most pronounced at the age of 9 months (p<0.01). Neurological alterations indicating impaired reflex responses were other added features of behavioural phenotype of this novel transgenic rat. These results allow us to suggest that neurodegeneration, caused by the non-mutated human truncated tau derived from sporadic human AD, result in the neuronal dysfunction consequently leading to the progressive neurobehavioural impairment.

  3. Retrosplenial cortical thinning as a possible major contributor for cognitive impairment in HIV patients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shin, Na-Young; Hong, Jinwoo; Yoon, Uicheul; Choi, Jun Yong; Lee, Seung-Koo; Lim, Soo Mee

    2017-01-01

    To identify brain cortical regions relevant to HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder (HAND) in HIV patients. HIV patients with HAND (n = 10), those with intact cognition (HIV-IC; n = 12), and age-matched, seronegative controls (n = 11) were recruited. All participants were male and underwent 3-dimensional T1-weighted imaging. Both vertex-wise and region of interest (ROI) analyses were performed to analyse cortical thickness. Compared to controls, both HIV-IC and HAND showed decreased cortical thickness mainly in the bilateral primary sensorimotor areas, extending to the prefrontal and parietal cortices. When directly comparing HIV-IC and HAND, HAND showed cortical thinning in the left retrosplenial cortex, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, left inferior parietal lobule, bilateral superior medial prefrontal cortices, right temporoparietal junction and left hippocampus, and cortical thickening in the left middle occipital cortex. Left retrosplenial cortical thinning showed significant correlation with slower information processing, declined verbal memory and executive function, and impaired fine motor skills. This study supports previous research suggesting the selective vulnerability of the primary sensorimotor cortices and associations between cortical thinning in the prefrontal and parietal cortices and cognitive impairment in HIV-infected patients. Furthermore, for the first time, we propose retrosplenial cortical thinning as a possible major contributor to HIV-associated cognitive impairment. (orig.)

  4. Retrosplenial cortical thinning as a possible major contributor for cognitive impairment in HIV patients

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shin, Na-Young [The Catholic University of Korea, Department of Radiology, College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Hong, Jinwoo; Yoon, Uicheul [Catholic University of Daegu, Department of Biomedical Engineering, College of Health and Medical Science, Gyeongsan-si, Gyeongbuk (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Jun Yong [Yonsei University College of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine and AIDS Research Institute, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Seung-Koo [Yonsei University College of Medicine, Department of Radiology, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lim, Soo Mee [Ewha Womans University, School of Medicine, Department of Radiology, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2017-11-15

    To identify brain cortical regions relevant to HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder (HAND) in HIV patients. HIV patients with HAND (n = 10), those with intact cognition (HIV-IC; n = 12), and age-matched, seronegative controls (n = 11) were recruited. All participants were male and underwent 3-dimensional T1-weighted imaging. Both vertex-wise and region of interest (ROI) analyses were performed to analyse cortical thickness. Compared to controls, both HIV-IC and HAND showed decreased cortical thickness mainly in the bilateral primary sensorimotor areas, extending to the prefrontal and parietal cortices. When directly comparing HIV-IC and HAND, HAND showed cortical thinning in the left retrosplenial cortex, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, left inferior parietal lobule, bilateral superior medial prefrontal cortices, right temporoparietal junction and left hippocampus, and cortical thickening in the left middle occipital cortex. Left retrosplenial cortical thinning showed significant correlation with slower information processing, declined verbal memory and executive function, and impaired fine motor skills. This study supports previous research suggesting the selective vulnerability of the primary sensorimotor cortices and associations between cortical thinning in the prefrontal and parietal cortices and cognitive impairment in HIV-infected patients. Furthermore, for the first time, we propose retrosplenial cortical thinning as a possible major contributor to HIV-associated cognitive impairment. (orig.)

  5. Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) Overview Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is an intermediate stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more-serious decline of dementia. It ...

  6. Adapting for Impaired Patrons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuyler, Michael

    1999-01-01

    Describes how a library, with an MCI Corporation grant, approached the process of setting up computers for the visually impaired. Discusses preparations, which included hiring a visually-impaired user as a consultant and contacting the VIP (Visually Impaired Persons) group; equipment; problems with the graphical user interface; and training.…

  7. A working model for the assessment of disruptions in social behavior among aged rats: The role of sex differences, social recognition, and sensorimotor processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perkins, Amy E; Doremus-Fitzwater, Tamara L; Spencer, Robert L; Varlinskaya, Elena I; Conti, Melissa M; Bishop, Christopher; Deak, Terrence

    2016-04-01

    Aging results in a natural decline in social behavior, yet little is known about the processes underlying these changes. Engaging in positive social interaction is associated with many health benefits, including reduced stress reactivity, and may serve as a potential buffer against adverse consequences of aging. The goal of these studies was to establish a tractable model for the assessment of social behavior deficits associated with late aging. Thus, in Exp. 1, 1.5-, 3-, and 18-month-old male Fischer 344 (F344) rats were assessed for object investigation, and social interaction with a same-aged partner (novel/familiar), or a different-aged partner, thereby establishing working parameters for studies that followed. Results revealed that 18-month-old males exhibited reductions in social investigation and social contact behavior, with this age-related decline not influenced by familiarity or age of the social partner. Subsequently, Exp. 2 extended assessment of social behavior to both male and female F344 rats at multiple ages (3, 9, 18, and 24 months), after which a series of sensorimotor performance tests were conducted. In this study, both males and females exhibited late aging-related reductions in social interactions, but these changes were more pronounced in females. Additionally, sensorimotor performance was shown to be impaired in 24-month-olds, but not 18-month-olds, with this deficit more evident in males. Finally, Exp. 3 examined whether aging-related inflammation could account for declines in social behavior during late aging by administering naproxen (0, 7, 14, and 28 mg/kg; s.c.)-a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug-to 18-month-old females. Results from this study revealed that social behavior was unaffected by acute or repeated (6 days) naproxen, suggesting that aging-related social deficits in females may not be a consequence of a general aging-related inflammation and/or malaise. Together, these findings demonstrate that aging-related declines in

  8. Effects of High-Definition Anodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Applied Simultaneously to Both Primary Motor Cortices on Bimanual Sensorimotor Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nils H. Pixa

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Many daily activities, such as tying one’s shoe laces, opening a jar of jam or performing a free throw in basketball, require the skillful coordinated use of both hands. Even though the non-invasive method of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS has been repeatedly shown to improve unimanual motor performance, little is known about its effects on bimanual motor performance. More knowledge about how tDCS may improve bimanual behavior would be relevant to motor recovery, e.g., in persons with bilateral impairment of hand function. We therefore examined the impact of high-definition anodal tDCS (HD-atDCS on the performance of a bimanual sequential sensorimotor task. Thirty-two volunteers (age M = 24.25; SD = 2.75; 14 females participated in this double-blind study and performed sport stacking in six experimental sessions. In sport stacking, 12 specially designed cups must be stacked (stacked up and dismantled (stacked down in predefined patterns as fast as possible. During a pretest, posttest and follow-up test, two sport stacking formations (3-6-3 stack and 1-10-1 stack were performed. Between the pretest and posttest, all participants were trained in sport stacking with concurrent brain stimulation for three consecutive days. The experimental group (STIM-M1 received HD-atDCS over both primary motor cortices (M1, while the control group received a sham stimulation (SHAM. Three-way analysis of variance (ANOVA revealed a significant main effect of TIME and a significant interaction of TIME × GROUP. No significant effects were found for GROUP, nor for the three-way interaction of TIME × GROUP × FORMATION. Further two-way ANOVAs showed a significant main effect of TIME and a non-significant main effect for GROUP in both sport stacking formations. A significant interaction between TIME × GROUP was found only for the 3-6-3 formation, indicating superior performance gains for the experimental group (STIM-M1. To account and control for

  9. Effects of High-Definition Anodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Applied Simultaneously to Both Primary Motor Cortices on Bimanual Sensorimotor Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pixa, Nils H.; Steinberg, Fabian; Doppelmayr, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Many daily activities, such as tying one’s shoe laces, opening a jar of jam or performing a free throw in basketball, require the skillful coordinated use of both hands. Even though the non-invasive method of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) has been repeatedly shown to improve unimanual motor performance, little is known about its effects on bimanual motor performance. More knowledge about how tDCS may improve bimanual behavior would be relevant to motor recovery, e.g., in persons with bilateral impairment of hand function. We therefore examined the impact of high-definition anodal tDCS (HD-atDCS) on the performance of a bimanual sequential sensorimotor task. Thirty-two volunteers (age M = 24.25; SD = 2.75; 14 females) participated in this double-blind study and performed sport stacking in six experimental sessions. In sport stacking, 12 specially designed cups must be stacked (stacked up) and dismantled (stacked down) in predefined patterns as fast as possible. During a pretest, posttest and follow-up test, two sport stacking formations (3-6-3 stack and 1-10-1 stack) were performed. Between the pretest and posttest, all participants were trained in sport stacking with concurrent brain stimulation for three consecutive days. The experimental group (STIM-M1) received HD-atDCS over both primary motor cortices (M1), while the control group received a sham stimulation (SHAM). Three-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed a significant main effect of TIME and a significant interaction of TIME × GROUP. No significant effects were found for GROUP, nor for the three-way interaction of TIME × GROUP × FORMATION. Further two-way ANOVAs showed a significant main effect of TIME and a non-significant main effect for GROUP in both sport stacking formations. A significant interaction between TIME × GROUP was found only for the 3-6-3 formation, indicating superior performance gains for the experimental group (STIM-M1). To account and control for baseline

  10. The Effects of Vibration and Muscle Fatigue on Trunk Sensorimotor Control in Low Back Pain Patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Alexandre Boucher

    Full Text Available Changes in sensorimotor function and increased trunk muscle fatigability have been identified in patients with chronic low back pain (cLBP. This study assessed the control of trunk force production in conditions with and without local erector spinae muscle vibration and evaluated the influence of muscle fatigue on trunk sensorimotor control.Twenty non-specific cLBP patients and 20 healthy participants were asked to perform submaximal isometric trunk extension torque with and without local vibration stimulation, before and after a trunk extensor muscle fatigue protocol. Constant error (CE, variable error (VE as well as absolute error (AE in peak torque were computed and compared across conditions. Trunk extensor muscle activation during isometric contractions and during the fatigue protocol was measured using surface electromyography (sEMG.Force reproduction accuracy of the trunk was significantly lower in the patient group (CE = 9.81 ± 2.23 Nm; AE = 18.16 ± 3.97 Nm than in healthy participants (CE = 4.44 ± 1.68 Nm; AE = 12.23 ± 2.44 Nm. Local erector spinae vibration induced a significant reduction in CE (4.33 ± 2.14 Nm and AE (13.71 ± 3.45 Nm mean scores in the patient group. Healthy participants conversely showed a significant increase in CE (8.17 ± 2.10 Nm and AE (16.29 ± 2.82 Nm mean scores under vibration conditions. The fatigue protocol induced erector spinae muscle fatigue as illustrated by a significant decrease in sEMG median time-frequency slopes. Following the fatigue protocol, patients with cLBP showed significant decrease in sEMG root mean square activity at L4-5 level and responded in similar manner with and without vibration stimulation in regard to CE mean scores.Patients with cLBP have a less accurate force reproduction sense than healthy participants. Local muscle vibration led to significant trunk neuromuscular control improvements in the cLBP patients before and after a muscle fatigue protocol. Muscle vibration

  11. The Effects of Vibration and Muscle Fatigue on Trunk Sensorimotor Control in Low Back Pain Patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abboud, Jacques; Nougarou, François; Normand, Martin C.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Changes in sensorimotor function and increased trunk muscle fatigability have been identified in patients with chronic low back pain (cLBP). This study assessed the control of trunk force production in conditions with and without local erector spinae muscle vibration and evaluated the influence of muscle fatigue on trunk sensorimotor control. Methods Twenty non-specific cLBP patients and 20 healthy participants were asked to perform submaximal isometric trunk extension torque with and without local vibration stimulation, before and after a trunk extensor muscle fatigue protocol. Constant error (CE), variable error (VE) as well as absolute error (AE) in peak torque were computed and compared across conditions. Trunk extensor muscle activation during isometric contractions and during the fatigue protocol was measured using surface electromyography (sEMG). Results Force reproduction accuracy of the trunk was significantly lower in the patient group (CE = 9.81 ± 2.23 Nm; AE = 18.16 ± 3.97 Nm) than in healthy participants (CE = 4.44 ± 1.68 Nm; AE = 12.23 ± 2.44 Nm). Local erector spinae vibration induced a significant reduction in CE (4.33 ± 2.14 Nm) and AE (13.71 ± 3.45 Nm) mean scores in the patient group. Healthy participants conversely showed a significant increase in CE (8.17 ± 2.10 Nm) and AE (16.29 ± 2.82 Nm) mean scores under vibration conditions. The fatigue protocol induced erector spinae muscle fatigue as illustrated by a significant decrease in sEMG median time-frequency slopes. Following the fatigue protocol, patients with cLBP showed significant decrease in sEMG root mean square activity at L4-5 level and responded in similar manner with and without vibration stimulation in regard to CE mean scores. Conclusions Patients with cLBP have a less accurate force reproduction sense than healthy participants. Local muscle vibration led to significant trunk neuromuscular control improvements in the cLBP patients before and after a muscle

  12. The Role of Motor Processes in Three-Dimensional Mental Rotation: Shaping Cognitive Processing via Sensorimotor Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreau, David

    2012-01-01

    An extensive body of literature has explored the involvement of motor processes in mental rotation, yet underlying individual differences are less documented and remain to be fully understood. We propose that sensorimotor experience shapes spatial abilities such as assessed in mental rotation tasks. Elite wrestlers' and non-athletes' mental…

  13. EFFECT OF PROPRIOCEPTIVE NEUROMUSCULAR FACILITATION (PNF IN IMPROVING SENSORIMOTOR FUNCTION IN PATIENTS WITH DIABETIC NEUROPATHY AFFECTING LOWER LIMBS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamaljeet Singh

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: Diabetic Mellitus is a group of metabolic disease characterized by hyperglycaemia resulting from defects in insulin secretion, insulin action or both. Distal Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy is the most common complication of diabetes which mainly affects the lower limbs. Most of the studies aimed at individually increasing muscle strength or sensation but not on overall performance enhancements of the diabetic lower limbs. The evidence supporting the effectiveness of PNF in diabetic neuropathic patients is scarce. Methods: 30 patients, with age between 50 to 70 years, diagnosed with Diabetic Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy (DSP were selected from the department of Medicine and department of Neurosurgery Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital. Patients were evaluated at the beginning and at the end of the intervention using Diabetic Neuropathy Examination scores. Patients received 3 sets of exercises one hour/day with 3 days/week for 3 months. Each set of exercises consists of 5 repetitions of PNF patterns (alternate day and techniques. Results: D1 & D2 patterns of PNF are effective in improving both motor and sensory functions of diabetic patients with neuropathic symptoms. Improvement in muscle strength, reflex and sensations occurred to a greater extent after the treatment of three months in these subjects. This study shows that PNF patterns were effective at enhancing sensorimotor problems of lower limbs. Conclusion: This study concluded that PNF is found to be effective in improving sensorimotor functions of diabetic neuropathic patients affecting lower limbs.

  14. Implications of a neural network model of early sensori-motor development for the field of developmental neurology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Heijst, JJ; Touwen, BCL; Vos, JE

    This paper reports on a neural network model for early sensori-motor development and on the possible implications of this research for our understanding and, eventually, treatment of motor disorders like cerebral palsy. We recapitulate the results we published in detail in a series of papers [1-4].

  15. Building sustainability

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mass Media

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available particu- lar social environment also being awarded. If a building can be used by the community after hours, it should be awarded extra points.” School sports facilities or meeting halls in corporate buildings, are some example. Multi-purpose use..., architect and senior researcher for the CSIR’s Built Environment Unit, the integra- tion of sustainability in building design cannot begin soon enough before it is too late. He says: “Unfortunately nothing is in place in South Africa. For a start...

  16. Memory Impairment in Children with Language Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baird, Gillian; Dworzynski, Katharina; Slonims, Vicky; Simonoff, Emily

    2010-01-01

    Aim: The aim of this study was to assess whether any memory impairment co-occurring with language impairment is global, affecting both verbal and visual domains, or domain specific. Method: Visual and verbal memory, learning, and processing speed were assessed in children aged 6 years to 16 years 11 months (mean 9y 9m, SD 2y 6mo) with current,…

  17. No Neuromuscular Side-Effects of Scopolamine in Sensorimotor Control and Force-Generating Capacity Among Parabolic Fliers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritzmann, Ramona; Freyler, Kathrin; Krause, Anne; Gollhofer, Albert

    2016-10-01

    Scopolamine is used to counteract motion sickness in parabolic flight (PF) experiments. Although the drug's anticholinergic properties effectively impede vomiting, recent studies document other sensory side-effects in the central nervous system that may considerably influence sensorimotor performance. This study aimed to quantify such effects in order to determine if they are of methodological and operational significance for sensorimotor control. Ten subjects of a PF campaign received a weight-sex-based dose of a subcutaneous scopolamine injection. Sensorimotor performance was recorded before medication, 20min, 2h and 4h after injection in four space-relevant paradigms: balance control in one-leg stance with eyes open (protocol 1) and closed as well as force-generating capacity in countermovement jumps and hops (protocol 2). Postural sway, forces and joint angles were recorded. Neuromuscular control was assessed by electromyography and peripheral nerve stimulation; H-reflexes and M-waves were used to monitor spinal excitability of the Ia afferent reflex circuitry and maximal motor output. (1) H-reflex amplitudes, latencies and functional reflexes remained unchanged after scopolamine injection. (2) M-waves, neuromuscular activation intensities and antagonistic muscle coordination did not change with scopolamine administration. (3) Balance performance and force-generating capacity were not impeded by scopolamine. We found no evidence for changes in sensorimotor control in response to scopolamine injection. Sensory processing of daily relevant reflexes, spinal excitability, maximal motor output and performance parameters were not sensitive to the medication. We conclude that scopolamine administration can be used to counteract motion sickness in PF without methodological and operational concerns or interference regarding sensorimotor skills associated with neuromuscular control.

  18. The Effects of Fluency Enhancing Conditions on Sensorimotor Control of Speech in Typically Fluent Speakers: An EEG Mu Rhythm Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiffani Kittilstved

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To determine whether changes in sensorimotor control resulting from speaking conditions that induce fluency in people who stutter (PWS can be measured using electroencephalographic (EEG mu rhythms in neurotypical speakers.Methods: Non-stuttering (NS adults spoke in one control condition (solo speaking and four experimental conditions (choral speech, delayed auditory feedback (DAF, prolonged speech and pseudostuttering. Independent component analysis (ICA was used to identify sensorimotor μ components from EEG recordings. Time-frequency analyses measured μ-alpha (8–13 Hz and μ-beta (15–25 Hz event-related synchronization (ERS and desynchronization (ERD during each speech condition.Results: 19/24 participants contributed μ components. Relative to the control condition, the choral and DAF conditions elicited increases in μ-alpha ERD in the right hemisphere. In the pseudostuttering condition, increases in μ-beta ERD were observed in the left hemisphere. No differences were present between the prolonged speech and control conditions.Conclusions: Differences observed in the experimental conditions are thought to reflect sensorimotor control changes. Increases in right hemisphere μ-alpha ERD likely reflect increased reliance on auditory information, including auditory feedback, during the choral and DAF conditions. In the left hemisphere, increases in μ-beta ERD during pseudostuttering may have resulted from the different movement characteristics of this task compared with the solo speaking task. Relationships to findings in stuttering are discussed.Significance: Changes in sensorimotor control related feedforward and feedback control in fluency-enhancing speech manipulations can be measured using time-frequency decompositions of EEG μ rhythms in neurotypical speakers. This quiet, non-invasive, and temporally sensitive technique may be applied to learn more about normal sensorimotor control and fluency enhancement in PWS.

  19. How the impact of median neuropathy on sensorimotor control capability of hands for diabetes: an achievable assessment from functional perspectives.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haw-Yen Chiu

    Full Text Available To comprehend the sensorimotor control ability in diabetic hands, this study investigated the sensation, motor function and precision pinch performances derived from a pinch-holding-up activity (PHUA test of the hands of diabetic patients and healthy subjects. The precision, sensitivity and specificity of the PHUA test in the measurements of diabetic patients were also analyzed. We hypothesized that the diabetic hands would have impacts on the sensorimotor functions of the hand performances under functionally quantitative measurements. One hundred and fifty-nine patients with clinically defined diabetes mellitus (DM and 95 age- and gender-matched healthy controls were included. Semmes-Weinstein monofilament (SWM, static and moving two-point discrimination (S2PD and M2PD, maximal pinch strength and precision pinch performance tests were conducted to evaluate the sensation, motor and sensorimotor status of the recruited hands. The results showed that there were significant differences (all p<0.05 in SWM, S2PD, M2PD and maximum pinch strength between the DM and control groups. A higher force ratio in the DM patients than in the controls (p<0.001 revealed a poor ability of pinch force adjustment in the DM patients. The percentage of maximal pinch strength was also significantly different (p<0.001 between the DM and control groups. The sensitivity, specificity and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve were 0.85, 0.51, and 0.724, respectively, for the PHUA test. Statistically significant degradations in sensory and motor functions and sensorimotor control ability were observed in the hands of the diabetic patients. The PHUA test could be feasibly used as a clinical tool to determine the sensorimotor function of the hands of diabetic patients from a functional perspective.

  20. Sensorimotor posture control in the blind: superior ankle proprioceptive acuity does not compensate for vision loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozdemir, Recep A; Pourmoghaddam, Amir; Paloski, William H

    2013-09-01

    To better understand sensorimotor posture control differences between blind and sighted individuals, we examined the role of ankle joint proprioception and ankle muscle strength on postural control in healthy blind (n=13, 25-58 years) and age- and sex-matched sighted (n=15, 20-65 years) volunteers. We measured ankle joint proprioceptive acuity and isokinetic muscle strength in plantarflexion and dorsiflexion using an isokinetic dynamometer. We also assessed postural control performance during quiet bipedal stance with and without sudden postural perturbations, and during quiet unipedal stance. We found that while our blind subjects exhibited significantly better proprioceptive acuity than our sighted subjects their postural control performance was significantly poorer than that of the sighted group with eyes open, and no different from that of the sighted group with eyes closed suggesting that their superior proprioceptive acuity does not translate to improved balance control. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Sensorimotor simulations underlie conceptual representations: modality-specific effects of prior activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pecher, Diane; Zeelenberg, René; Barsalou, Lawrence W

    2004-02-01

    According to the perceptual symbols theory (Barsalou, 1999), sensorimotor simulations underlie the representation of concepts. Simulations are componential in the sense that they vary with the context in which the concept is presented. In the present study, we investigated whether representations are affected by recent experiences with a concept. Concept names (e.g., APPLE) were presented twice in a property verification task with a different property on each occasion. The two properties were either from the same perceptual modality (e.g., green, shiny) or from different modalities (e.g., tart, shiny). All stimuli were words. There was a lag of several intervening trials between the first and second presentation. Verification times and error rates for the second presentation of the concept were higher if the properties were from different modalities than if they were from the same modality.

  2. Centre-surround organization of fast sensorimotor integration in human motor hand area

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dubbioso, Raffaele; Raffin, Estelle; Karabanov, Anke

    2017-01-01

    Using the short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI) paradigm, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the primary motor hand area (M1HAND) can probe how sensory input from limbs modulates corticomotor output in humans. Here we applied a novel TMS mapping approach to chart the spatial representat......Using the short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI) paradigm, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the primary motor hand area (M1HAND) can probe how sensory input from limbs modulates corticomotor output in humans. Here we applied a novel TMS mapping approach to chart the spatial...... in M1HAND. Like homotopic SAI, heterotopic SAF was somatotopically expressed in M1HAND. Together, the results provide first-time evidence that fast sensorimotor integration involves centre-inhibition and surround-facilitation in human M1HAND....

  3. Cognitive development in kittens (Felis catus): an observational study of object permanence and sensorimotor intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumas, C; Doré, F Y

    1991-12-01

    Spontaneous behavior of kittens (Felis catus) was filmed from birth until the end of Month 5 and coded according to Piagetian criteria of sensorimotor intelligence (SI) and object permanence (OP). Data revealed that Stages 2, 3, and 4 of SI were reached at Days 10, 26, and 45, respectively, whereas Stages 2, 3, and 4 of OP were reached at Days 31, 37, and 41, respectively. Spontaneous search behavior was exhibited both in searching for an object that disappeared and in hiding while moving toward a target object. From Day 45 on, search behavior was integrated into a playful social interaction in the form of hide-and-seek. Hence, kittens' spontaneous activity provided them with contexts in which OP was necessary for activity. Lastly, it is proposed that the mobility of both social and physical objects triggered circular activity in this species.

  4. Brain-computer interface signal processing at the Wadsworth Center: mu and sensorimotor beta rhythms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, Dennis J; Krusienski, Dean J; Wolpaw, Jonathan R

    2006-01-01

    The Wadsworth brain-computer interface (BCI), based on mu and beta sensorimotor rhythms, uses one- and two-dimensional cursor movement tasks and relies on user training. This is a real-time closed-loop system. Signal processing consists of channel selection, spatial filtering, and spectral analysis. Feature translation uses a regression approach and normalization. Adaptation occurs at several points in this process on the basis of different criteria and methods. It can use either feedforward (e.g., estimating the signal mean for normalization) or feedback control (e.g., estimating feature weights for the prediction equation). We view this process as the interaction between a dynamic user and a dynamic system that coadapt over time. Understanding the dynamics of this interaction and optimizing its performance represent a major challenge for BCI research.

  5. Virtual reality applications in assessing the effect of anxiety on sensorimotor integration in human postural control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widdowson, Christopher; Ganhotra, Jatin; Faizal, Mohammed; Wilko, Marissa; Parikh, Saurin; Adhami, Zainulabidin; Hernandez, Manuel E

    2016-08-01

    Falls are a leading cause of injury and mortality among adults over the age of 65 years. Given the strong relation between fear of falling and fall risk, identification of the mechanisms that underlie anxiety-related changes in postural control may pave the way to the development of novel therapeutic strategies aimed at reducing fall risk in older adults. First, we review potential mechanisms underlying anxiety-mediated changes in postural control in older adults with and without neurological conditions. We then present a system that allows for the simultaneous recording of neural, physiological, and behavioral data in an immersive virtual reality (VR) environment while implementing sensory and mechanical perturbations to evaluate alterations in sensorimotor integration under conditions with high postural threat. We also discuss applications of VR in minimizing falls in older adults and potential future studies.

  6. Short-term kinesthetic training for sensorimotor rhythms: effects in experts and amateurs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zapała, Dariusz; Zabielska-Mendyk, Emilia; Cudo, Andrzej; Krzysztofiak, Agnieszka; Augustynowicz, Paweł; Francuz, Piotr

    2015-01-01

    The authors' aim was to examine whether short-term kinesthetic training affects the level of sensorimotor rhythm (SMR) in different frequency band: alpha (8-12 Hz), lower beta (12.5-16 Hz) and beta (16.5-20 Hz) during the execution of a motor imagery task of closing and opening the right and the left hand by experts (jugglers, practicing similar exercises on an everyday basis) and amateurs (individuals not practicing any sports). It was found that the performance of short kinesthetic training increases the power of alpha rhythm when executing imagery tasks only in the group of amateurs. Therefore, kinesthetic training may be successfully used as a method increasing the vividness of motor imagery, for example, in tasks involving the control of brain-computer interfaces based on SMR.

  7. Virtual Sensorimotor Training for Balance: Pilot Study Results for Children With Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jirikowic, Tracy; Westcott McCoy, Sarah; Price, Robert; Ciol, Marcia A; Hsu, Lin-Ya; Kartin, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    To examine the effects of Sensorimotor Training to Affect Balance, Engagement, and Learning (STABEL), a virtual reality system to train sensory adaptation for balance control, for children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs). Twenty-three children with FASDs received STABEL training in a university laboratory, or home, or were controls. The Movement Assessment Battery for Children-2nd edition (MABC-2) and Pediatric Clinical Test of Sensory Interaction for Balance-2 (P-CTSIB-2) were analyzed by group (lab, home, and control), session (pre-STABEL, 1 week post-STABEL, and 1 month post-STABEL), and group-by-session interaction. Significant effects were group and session for MABC-2 Balance and interaction for MABC-2 Total Motor and P-CTSIB-2. Preliminary results support improved sensory adaptation, balance, and motor performance post-STABEL, which warrant further study with a larger, randomized sample.

  8. Virtual Reality as a Medium for Sensorimotor Adaptation Training and Spaceflight Countermeasures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madansingh, S.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2014-01-01

    Astronauts experience a profound sensorimotor adaptation during transition to and from the microgravity environment of space. With the upcoming shift to extra-long duration missions (upwards of 1 year) aboard the International Space Station, the immediate risks to astronauts during these transitory periods become more important than ever to understand and prepare for. Recent advances in virtual reality technology enable everyday adoption of these tools for entertainment and use in training. Embedding an individual in a virtual environment (VE) allows the ability to change the perception of visual flow, elicit automatic motor behavior and produce sensorimotor adaptation, not unlike those required during long duration microgravity exposure. The overall goal of this study is to determine the feasibility of present head mounted display technology (HMD) to produce reliable visual flow information and the expected adaptation associated with virtual environment manipulation to be used in future sensorimotor adaptability countermeasures. To further understand the influence of visual flow on gait adaptation during treadmill walking, a series of discordant visual flow manipulations in a virtual environment are proposed. Six healthy participants (3 male and 3 female) will observe visual flow information via HMD (Oculus Rift DK2) while walking on an instrumented treadmill at their preferred walking speed. Participants will be immersed in a series of VE's resembling infinite hallways with different visual characteristics: an office hallway, a hallway with pillars and the hallway of a fictional spacecraft. Participants will perform three trials of 10 min. each, which include walking on the treadmill while receiving congruent or incongruent visual information via the HMD. In the first trial, participants will experience congruent visual information (baseline) where the hallway is perceived to move at the same rate as their walking speed. The final two trials will be randomized

  9. Safety and efficacy of ranirestat in patients with mild-to-moderate diabetic sensorimotor polyneuropathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polydefkis, Michael; Arezzo, Joseph; Nash, Marshall; Bril, Vera; Shaibani, Aziz; Gordon, Robert J; Bradshaw, Kate L; Junor, Roderick W J

    2015-12-01

    We examined the efficacy and safety of ranirestat in patients with diabetic sensorimotor polyneuropathy (DSPN). Patients (18-75 years) with stable type 1/2 diabetes mellitus and DSPN were eligible for this global, double-blind, phase II/III study (ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00927914). Patients (n = 800) were randomized 1 : 1 : 1 to placebo, ranirestat 40 mg/day or 80 mg/day (265 : 264 : 271). Change in peroneal motor nerve conduction velocity (PMNCV) from baseline to 24 months was the primary endpoint with a goal improvement vs. placebo ≥1.2 m/s. Other endpoints included symptoms, quality-of-life, and safety. Six hundred thirty-three patients completed the study. The PMNCV difference from placebo was significant at 6, 12, and 18 months in both ranirestat groups, but diabetes. © 2015 Peripheral Nerve Society.

  10. State-dependent sensorimotor processing: gaze and posture stability during simulated flight in birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McArthur, Kimberly L; Dickman, J David

    2011-04-01

    Vestibular responses play an important role in maintaining gaze and posture stability during rotational motion. Previous studies suggest that these responses are state dependent, their expression varying with the environmental and locomotor conditions of the animal. In this study, we simulated an ethologically relevant state in the laboratory to study state-dependent vestibular responses in birds. We used frontal airflow to simulate gliding flight and measured pigeons' eye, head, and tail responses to rotational motion in darkness, under both head-fixed and head-free conditions. We show that both eye and head response gains are significantly higher during flight, thus enhancing gaze and head-in-space stability. We also characterize state-specific tail responses to pitch and roll rotation that would help to maintain body-in-space orientation during flight. These results demonstrate that vestibular sensorimotor processing is not fixed but depends instead on the animal's behavioral state.

  11. Specific adaptations of neuromuscular control and knee joint stiffness following sensorimotor training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruber, M; Bruhn, S; Gollhofer, A

    2006-08-01

    The aim of this study was to examine how fixations of the ankle joint during sensorimotor training (SMT) influence adaptations in mechanical stiffness and neuromuscular control of the knee joint. Sixty-three healthy subjects were randomly assigned to three training groups that differed in their degree of ankle joint fixation, which was either barefooted, with an ankle brace or with a ski boot. Mechanical knee joint stiffness and reflex control of m. vastus medialis, m. vastus lateralis, m. biceps femoris, and m. semitendinosus were tested during force controlled anterior tibial displacements. This force was applied as both a fast and a slow stimulus. After the training period the group that trained barefooted showed an increase in mechanical stiffness of the knee joint from 79 +/- 21 (Mean +/- SD) N/mm to 110 +/- 38 N/mm (p boots was able to improve knee joint stiffness from 67 +/- 26 N/mm to 96 +/- 47 N/mm (p knee joint injuries.

  12. Electroencephalographic Correlates of Sensorimotor Integration and Embodiment during the Appreciation of Virtual Architectural Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vecchiato, Giovanni; Tieri, Gaetano; Jelic, Andrea; De Matteis, Federico; Maglione, Anton G; Babiloni, Fabio

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays there is the hope that neuroscientific findings will contribute to the improvement of building design in order to create environments which satisfy man's demands. This can be achieved through the understanding of neurophysiological correlates of architectural perception. To this aim, the electroencephalographic (EEG) signals of 12 healthy subjects were recorded during the perception of three immersive virtual reality environments (VEs). Afterwards, participants were asked to describe their experience in terms of Familiarity, Novelty, Comfort, Pleasantness, Arousal, and Presence using a rating scale from 1 to 9. These perceptual dimensions are hypothesized to influence the pattern of cerebral spectral activity, while Presence is used to assess the realism of the virtual stimulation. Hence, the collected scores were used to analyze the Power Spectral Density (PSD) of the EEG for each behavioral dimension in the theta, alpha and mu bands by means of time-frequency analysis and topographic statistical maps. Analysis of Presence resulted in the activation of the frontal-midline theta, indicating the involvement of sensorimotor integration mechanisms when subjects expressed to feel more present in the VEs. Similar patterns also characterized the experience of familiar and comfortable VEs. In addition, pleasant VEs increased the theta power across visuomotor circuits and activated the alpha band in areas devoted to visuospatial exploration and processing of categorical spatial relations. Finally, the de-synchronization of the mu rhythm described the perception of pleasant and comfortable VEs, showing the involvement of left motor areas and embodied mechanisms for environment appreciation. Overall, these results show the possibility to measure EEG correlates of architectural perception involving the cerebral circuits of sensorimotor integration, spatial navigation, and embodiment. These observations can help testing architectural hypotheses in order to design

  13. Modulation of sensorimotor circuits during retrieval of negative Autobiographical Memories: Exploring the impact of personality dimensions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mineo, Ludovico; Concerto, Carmen; Patel, Dhaval; Mayorga, Tyrone; Chusid, Eileen; Infortuna, Carmenrita; Aguglia, Eugenio; Sarraf, Yasmin; Battaglia, Fortunato

    2018-02-01

    Autobiographical Memory (AM) retrieval refers to recollection of experienced past events. Previous Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) studies have shown that presentation of emotional negative stimuli affects human motor cortex excitability resulting in larger motor evoked potentials (MEPs). Up to date no TMS studies have been carried out in order to investigate the effect of personal memories with negative emotional value on corticospinal excitability. In this study we hypothesized that negative AM retrieval will modulate corticomotor excitability and sensorimotor integration as determined by TMS neurophysiological parameters. Furthermore, we investigated whether TMS responses during retrieval of negative AM are associated with specific personality traits. Twelve healthy subjects were asked to recall either a negative or a neutral AM across two different days in a randomized order. During this memory retrieval, the following TMS parameters were recorded: MEPs; Short- interval intracortical inhibition (SICI) and Intracortical facilitation (ICF); Short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI) and Long- latency afferent inhibition (LAI). Personality traits were assessed by using the Big Five scale. Statistical analysis was performed using factorial ANOVAs and multiple linear regression models. When compared to retrieval of neutral AM, recollection of negative AM induced a larger increase in MEP amplitude, an increase in ICF, and a decrease in SAI. The neuroticism personality trait was a significant predictor of the MEP amplitude increase during retrieval of negative AM. Altogether these results indicate that cortical excitability and sensorimotor integration are selectively modulated by the valence of AM. These results provide the first TMS evidence that the modulatory effect of the AM retrieval is associated with specific personality traits. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Inferring Characteristics of Sensorimotor Behavior by Quantifying Dynamics of Animal Locomotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leung, KaWai

    Locomotion is one of the most well-studied topics in animal behavioral studies. Many fundamental and clinical research make use of the locomotion of an animal model to explore various aspects in sensorimotor behavior. In the past, most of these studies focused on population average of a specific trait due to limitation of data collection and processing power. With recent advance in computer vision and statistical modeling techniques, it is now possible to track and analyze large amounts of behavioral data. In this thesis, I present two projects that aim to infer the characteristics of sensorimotor behavior by quantifying the dynamics of locomotion of nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, shedding light on statistical dependence between sensing and behavior. In the first project, I investigate the possibility of inferring noxious sensory information from the behavior of Caenorhabditis elegans. I develop a statistical model to infer the heat stimulus level perceived by individual animals from their stereotyped escape responses after stimulation by an IR laser. The model allows quantification of analgesic-like effects of chemical agents or genetic mutations in the worm. At the same time, the method is able to differentiate perturbations of locomotion behavior that are beyond affecting the sensory system. With this model I propose experimental designs that allows statistically significant identification of analgesic-like effects. In the second project, I investigate the relationship of energy budget and stability of locomotion in determining the walking speed distribution of Drosophila melanogaster during aging. The locomotion stability at different age groups is estimated from video recordings using Floquet theory. I calculate the power consumption of different locomotion speed using a biomechanics model. In conclusion, the power consumption, not stability, predicts the locomotion speed distribution at different ages.

  15. Temporal dynamics of sensorimotor integration in speech perception and production: Independent component analysis of EEG data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David eJenson

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Activity in premotor and sensorimotor cortices is found in speech production and some perception tasks. Yet, how sensorimotor integration supports these functions is unclear due to a lack of data examining the timing of activity from these regions. Beta (~20Hz and alpha (~10Hz spectral power within the EEG µ rhythm are considered indices of motor and somatosensory activity, respectively. In the current study, perception conditions required discrimination (same/different of syllables pairs (/ba/ and /da/ in quiet and noisy conditions. Production conditions required covert and overt syllable productions and overt word production. Independent component analysis was performed on EEG data obtained during these conditions to 1 identify clusters of µ components common to all conditions and 2 examine real-time event-related spectral perturbations (ERSP within alpha and beta bands. 17 and 15 out of 20 participants produced left and right µ-components, respectively, localized to precentral gyri. Discrimination conditions were characterized by significant (pFDR<.05 early alpha event-related synchronization (ERS prior to and during stimulus presentation and later alpha event-related desynchronization (ERD following stimulus offset. Beta ERD began early and gained strength across time. Differences were found between quiet and noisy discrimination conditions. Both overt syllable and word productions yielded similar alpha/beta ERD that began prior to production and was strongest during muscle activity. Findings during covert production were weaker than during overt production. One explanation for these findings is that µ-beta ERD indexes early predictive coding (e.g., internal modeling and/or overt and covert attentional / motor processes. µ-alpha ERS may index inhibitory input to the premotor cortex from sensory regions prior to and during discrimination, while µ-alpha ERD may index re-afferent sensory feedback during speech rehearsal and production.

  16. Meis1: effects on motor phenotypes and the sensorimotor system in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaro V. Salminen

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available MEIS1 encodes a developmental transcription factor and has been linked to restless legs syndrome (RLS in genome-wide association studies. RLS is a movement disorder leading to severe sleep reduction and has a substantial impact on the quality of life of patients. In genome-wide association studies, MEIS1 has consistently been the gene with the highest effect size and functional studies suggest a disease-relevant downregulation. Therefore, haploinsufficiency of Meis1 could be the system with the most potential for modeling RLS in animals. We used heterozygous Meis1-knockout mice to study the effects of Meis1 haploinsufficiency on mouse behavioral and neurological phenotypes, and to relate the findings to human RLS. We exposed the Meis1-deficient mice to assays of motor, sensorimotor and cognitive ability, and assessed the effect of a dopaminergic receptor 2/3 agonist commonly used in the treatment of RLS. The mutant mice showed a pattern of circadian hyperactivity, which is compatible with human RLS. Moreover, we discovered a replicable prepulse inhibition (PPI deficit in the Meis1-deficient animals. In addition, these mice were hyposensitive to the PPI-reducing effect of the dopaminergic receptor agonist, highlighting a role of Meis1 in the dopaminergic system. Other reported phenotypes include enhanced social recognition at an older age that was not related to alterations in adult olfactory bulb neurogenesis previously shown to be implicated in this behavior. In conclusion, the Meis1-deficient mice fulfill some of the hallmarks of an RLS animal model, and revealed the role of Meis1 in sensorimotor gating and in the dopaminergic systems modulating it.

  17. Human sensorimotor communication: a theory of signaling in online social interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pezzulo, Giovanni; Donnarumma, Francesco; Dindo, Haris

    2013-01-01

    Although the importance of communication is recognized in several disciplines, it is rarely studied in the context of online social interactions and joint actions. During online joint actions, language and gesture are often insufficient and humans typically use non-verbal, sensorimotor forms of communication to send coordination signals. For example, when playing volleyball, an athlete can exaggerate her movements to signal her intentions to her teammates (say, a pass to the right) or to feint an adversary. Similarly, a person who is transporting a table together with a co-actor can push the table in a certain direction to signal where and when he intends to place it. Other examples of "signaling" are over-articulating in noisy environments and over-emphasizing vowels in child-directed speech. In all these examples, humans intentionally modify their action kinematics to make their goals easier to disambiguate. At the moment no formal theory exists of these forms of sensorimotor communication and signaling. We present one such theory that describes signaling as a combination of a pragmatic and a communicative action, and explains how it simplifies coordination in online social interactions. We cast signaling within a "joint action optimization" framework in which co-actors optimize the success of their interaction and joint goals rather than only their part of the joint action. The decision of whether and how much to signal requires solving a trade-off between the costs of modifying one's behavior and the benefits in terms of interaction success. Signaling is thus an intentional strategy that supports social interactions; it acts in concert with automatic mechanisms of resonance, prediction, and imitation, especially when the context makes actions and intentions ambiguous and difficult to read. Our theory suggests that communication dynamics should be studied within theories of coordination and interaction rather than only in terms of the maximization of information

  18. Intranasal mesenchymal stem cell treatment for neonatal brain damage: long-term cognitive and sensorimotor improvement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Donega

    Full Text Available Mesenchymal stem cell (MSC administration via the intranasal route could become an effective therapy to treat neonatal hypoxic-ischemic (HI brain damage. We analyzed long-term effects of intranasal MSC treatment on lesion size, sensorimotor and cognitive behavior, and determined the therapeutic window and dose response relationships. Furthermore, the appearance of MSCs at the lesion site in relation to the therapeutic window was examined. Nine-day-old mice were subjected to unilateral carotid artery occlusion and hypoxia. MSCs were administered intranasally at 3, 10 or 17 days after hypoxia-ischemia (HI. Motor, cognitive and histological outcome was investigated. PKH-26 labeled cells were used to localize MSCs in the brain. We identified 0.5 × 10(6 MSCs as the minimal effective dose with a therapeutic window of at least 10 days but less than 17 days post-HI. A single dose was sufficient for a marked beneficial effect. MSCs reach the lesion site within 24 h when given 3 or 10 days after injury. However, no MSCs were detected in the lesion when administered 17 days following HI. We also show for the first time that intranasal MSC treatment after HI improves cognitive function. Improvement of sensorimotor function and histological outcome was maintained until at least 9 weeks post-HI. The capacity of MSCs to reach the lesion site within 24 h after intranasal administration at 10 days but not at 17 days post-HI indicates a therapeutic window of at least 10 days. Our data strongly indicate that intranasal MSC treatment may become a promising non-invasive therapeutic tool to effectively reduce neonatal encephalopathy.

  19. An evaluation of sensorimotor integration during locomotion toward a target in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Q J; Frank, J S; Roy, E A; Jenkins, M E; Spaulding, S; Patla, A E; Jog, M S

    2005-01-01

    Recent research suggests that basal ganglia dysfunction may result in problems integrating concurrent vision and proprioception during movement. We evaluated dopaminergic system involvement in this sensorimotor process during locomotion within a large sample of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients while "On" and "Off" their dopaminergic medications (n=25), in conditions that selectively manipulated the availability of proprioception, vision or both. The present experiment focused on two main objectives: i) to examine the relative influence of visual and proprioceptive inputs on locomotion and target accuracy in patients with PD; and ii) to examine the influence of dopamine replacement therapy on sensorimotor integration while moving toward the target. All participants walked at a self-selected pace on a GAITRite carpet in two baseline conditions (light and dark), as well as four experimental darkness conditions: a) to a remembered target (i.e. proprioception only), b) to a remembered target with light on chest for body position awareness (proprioception plus), c) with vision of a lit target, also with light on chest (vision and proprioception), d) pushed in wheelchair to remembered target (no proprioception or vision). Final position was measured by 2-D radial error, and revealed a group by condition interaction, suggesting that PD patients "Off" their medications move to targets with less accuracy, but approach the accuracy of healthy participants when in the "On" state. Both PD and healthy improved their accuracy with availability of concurrent vision and proprioception (condition c). Interestingly, our results demonstrate that PD "Off" performed the task with greater difficulty than when "On" medication, but only when proprioception was the sole source of feedback. Since PD, whether medicated or unmedicated were even more affected when proprioception was removed (wheelchair), a memory-related explanation can be ruled out. Our results suggest that the basal ganglia

  20. Sensorimotor synchronization with different metrical levels of point-light dance movements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi-Huang eSu

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Rhythm perception and synchronization have been extensively investigated in the auditory domain, as they underlie means of human communication such as music and speech. Although recent studies suggest comparable mechanisms for synchronizing with periodically moving visual objects, the extent to which it applies to ecologically relevant information, such as the rhythm of complex biological motion, remains unknown. The present study addressed this issue by linking rhythm of music and dance in the framework of action-perception coupling. As a previous study showed that observers perceived multiple metrical periodicities in dance movements that embodied this structure, the present study examined whether sensorimotor synchronization (SMS to dance movements resembles what is known of auditory SMS. Participants watched a point-light figure performing two basic steps of Swing dance cyclically, in which the trunk bounced at every beat and the limbs moved at every second beat, forming two metrical periodicities. Participants tapped synchronously to the bounce of the trunk with or without the limbs moving in the stimuli (Experiment 1, or tapped synchronously to the leg movements with or without the trunk bouncing simultaneously (Experiment 2. Results showed that, while synchronization with the bounce (lower-level pulse was not influenced by the presence or absence of limb movements (metrical accent, synchronization with the legs (beat was improved by the presence of the bounce (metrical subdivision across different movement types. The latter finding parallels the subdivision benefit often demonstrated in auditory tasks, suggesting common sensorimotor mechanisms for visual rhythms in dance and auditory rhythms in music.

  1. Human sensorimotor communication: a theory of signaling in online social interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Pezzulo

    Full Text Available Although the importance of communication is recognized in several disciplines, it is rarely studied in the context of online social interactions and joint actions. During online joint actions, language and gesture are often insufficient and humans typically use non-verbal, sensorimotor forms of communication to send coordination signals. For example, when playing volleyball, an athlete can exaggerate her movements to signal her intentions to her teammates (say, a pass to the right or to feint an adversary. Similarly, a person who is transporting a table together with a co-actor can push the table in a certain direction to signal where and when he intends to place it. Other examples of "signaling" are over-articulating in noisy environments and over-emphasizing vowels in child-directed speech. In all these examples, humans intentionally modify their action kinematics to make their goals easier to disambiguate. At the moment no formal theory exists of these forms of sensorimotor communication and signaling. We present one such theory that describes signaling as a combination of a pragmatic and a communicative action, and explains how it simplifies coordination in online social interactions. We cast signaling within a "joint action optimization" framework in which co-actors optimize the success of their interaction and joint goals rather than only their part of the joint action. The decision of whether and how much to signal requires solving a trade-off between the costs of modifying one's behavior and the benefits in terms of interaction success. Signaling is thus an intentional strategy that supports social interactions; it acts in concert with automatic mechanisms of resonance, prediction, and imitation, especially when the context makes actions and intentions ambiguous and difficult to read. Our theory suggests that communication dynamics should be studied within theories of coordination and interaction rather than only in terms of the

  2. Symbol Grounding Without Direct Experience: Do Words Inherit Sensorimotor Activation From Purely Linguistic Context?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Günther, Fritz; Dudschig, Carolin; Kaup, Barbara

    2018-05-01

    Theories of embodied cognition assume that concepts are grounded in non-linguistic, sensorimotor experience. In support of this assumption, previous studies have shown that upwards response movements are faster than downwards movements after participants have been presented with words whose referents are typically located in the upper vertical space (and vice versa for downwards responses). This is taken as evidence that processing these words reactivates sensorimotor experiential traces. This congruency effect was also found for novel words, after participants learned these words as labels for novel objects that they encountered either in their upper or lower visual field. While this indicates that direct experience with a word's referent is sufficient to evoke said congruency effects, the present study investigates whether this direct experience is also a necessary condition. To this end, we conducted five experiments in which participants learned novel words from purely linguistic input: Novel words were presented in pairs with real up- or down-words (Experiment 1); they were presented in natural sentences where they replaced these real words (Experiment 2); they were presented as new labels for these real words (Experiment 3); and they were presented as labels for novel combined concepts based on these real words (Experiment 4 and 5). In all five experiments, we did not find any congruency effects elicited by the novel words; however, participants were always able to make correct explicit judgements about the vertical dimension associated to the novel words. These results suggest that direct experience is necessary for reactivating experiential traces, but this reactivation is not a necessary condition for understanding (in the sense of storing and accessing) the corresponding aspects of word meaning. Copyright © 2017 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  3. Sensorimotor Synchronization with Different Metrical Levels of Point-Light Dance Movements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Yi-Huang

    2016-01-01

    Rhythm perception and synchronization have been extensively investigated in the auditory domain, as they underlie means of human communication such as music and speech. Although recent studies suggest comparable mechanisms for synchronizing with periodically moving visual objects, the extent to which it applies to ecologically relevant information, such as the rhythm of complex biological motion, remains unknown. The present study addressed this issue by linking rhythm of music and dance in the framework of action-perception coupling. As a previous study showed that observers perceived multiple metrical periodicities in dance movements that embodied this structure, the present study examined whether sensorimotor synchronization (SMS) to dance movements resembles what is known of auditory SMS. Participants watched a point-light figure performing two basic steps of Swing dance cyclically, in which the trunk bounced at every beat and the limbs moved at every second beat, forming two metrical periodicities. Participants tapped synchronously to the bounce of the trunk with or without the limbs moving in the stimuli (Experiment 1), or tapped synchronously to the leg movements with or without the trunk bouncing simultaneously (Experiment 2). Results showed that, while synchronization with the bounce (lower-level pulse) was not influenced by the presence or absence of limb movements (metrical accent), synchronization with the legs (beat) was improved by the presence of the bounce (metrical subdivision) across different movement types. The latter finding parallels the “subdivision benefit” often demonstrated in auditory tasks, suggesting common sensorimotor mechanisms for visual rhythms in dance and auditory rhythms in music. PMID:27199709

  4. Motor Skills Training Improves Sensorimotor Dysfunction and Increases Microtubule-Associated Protein 2 mRNA Expression in Rats with Intracerebral Hemorrhage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamakoshi, Keigo; Kawanaka, Kentaro; Onishi, Hideaki; Takamatsu, Yasuyuki; Ishida, Kazuto

    2016-08-01

    In this study, we examined the effects of motor skills training on the sensorimotor function and the expression of genes associated with synaptic plasticity after intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) in rats. Male Wistar rats were subjected to ICH or sham operation. ICH was caused by the injection of collagenase into the left striatum. Rats were randomly assigned to no training, acrobatic training, and sham groups. The acrobatic group performed 5 types of acrobatic tasks from 4 to 28 days after surgery. The forelimb sensorimotor function was evaluated over time using forepaw grasping, forelimb placing, and postural instability tests. At 14 and 29 days after the lesion, we analyzed the mRNA expression levels of microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2), brain-derived neurotrophic factor, and growth-associated protein 43 in the bilateral sensorimotor cortex (forelimb area) by real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Motor skills training in ICH rats improved the sensorimotor dysfunction significantly from the early phase. The mRNA expression level of MAP2 was upregulated in the ipsilesional sensorimotor cortex by motor skills training at 29 days after the lesion. Our results suggest that sensorimotor functional recovery following motor skills training after ICH is promoted by dendritic growth in the ipsilesional sensorimotor cortex. Copyright © 2016 National Stroke Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Interdependences between sustainable development and sustainable economy

    OpenAIRE

    Emilia Mioara CÂMPEANU; Carmen Valentina RĂDULESCU

    2014-01-01

    Sustainable development and sustainable economy are mostly used concepts. Understanding clearly their meaning allows their use in an appropriate context and, therefore, their boundaries in terms of theoretical and practical approaches on which occasion it can be given their interdependencies. The paper aim is to analyze the interdependences between sustainable development and sustainable economy.

  6. Inflexible minds: impaired attention switching in recent-onset schizophrenia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henderikus G O M Smid

    Full Text Available Impairment of sustained attention is assumed to be a core cognitive abnormality in schizophrenia. However, this seems inconsistent with a recent hypothesis that in schizophrenia the implementation of selection (i.e., sustained attention is intact but the control of selection (i.e., switching the focus of attention is impaired. Mounting evidence supports this hypothesis, indicating that switching of attention is a bigger problem in schizophrenia than maintaining the focus of attention. To shed more light on this hypothesis, we tested whether schizophrenia patients are impaired relative to controls in sustaining attention, switching attention, or both. Fifteen patients with recent-onset schizophrenia and fifteen healthy volunteers, matched on age and intelligence, performed sustained attention and attention switching tasks, while performance and brain potential measures of selective attention were recorded. In the sustained attention task, patients did not differ from the controls on these measures. In the attention switching task, however, patients showed worse performance than the controls, and early selective attention related brain potentials were absent in the patients while clearly present in the controls. These findings support the hypothesis that schizophrenia is associated with an impairment of the mechanisms that control the direction of attention (attention switching, while the mechanisms that implement a direction of attention (sustained attention are intact.

  7. Virtual Sustainability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Sims Bainbridge

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available In four ways, massively multiplayer online role-playing games may serve as tools for advancing sustainability goals, and as laboratories for developing alternatives to current social arrangements that have implications for the natural environment. First, by moving conspicuous consumption and other usually costly status competitions into virtual environments, these virtual worlds might reduce the need for physical resources. Second, they provide training that could prepare individuals to be teleworkers, and develop or demonstrate methods for using information technology to replace much transportation technology, notably in commuting. Third, virtual worlds and online games build international cooperation, even blending national cultures, thereby inching us toward not only the world consciousness needed for international agreements about the environment, but also toward non-spatial government that cuts across archaic nationalisms. Finally, realizing the potential social benefits of this new technology may urge us to reconsider a number of traditional societal institutions.

  8. Sustainability; Sustentabilidade

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2009-10-15

    This chapter analyses the production chain of ethanol, considering the impacts on the quality of the air, water supplies, soil occupation and biodiversity, and the efforts for the soil preservation. It is pointed out the activities of the production cycle and use of bio ethanol due to great uncertainties as far the environmental impacts is concerning and that will deserve more attention in future evaluations. At same time, the chapter highlights another activities where the present acknowledge is sufficient to assure the control and/or prediction of consequences of the desired intervention on the environment media to accommodate the sugar and ethanol production expansion. The consideration is not conservative but to promote the sustainable development.

  9. Sustainability Science Needs Sustainable Data!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Downs, R. R.; Chen, R. S.

    2013-12-01

    Sustainability science (SS) is an 'emerging field of research dealing with the interactions between natural and social systems, and with how those interactions affect the challenge of sustainability: meeting the needs of present and future generations while substantially reducing poverty and conserving the planet's life support systems' (Kates, 2011; Clark, 2007). Bettencourt & Kaur (2011) identified more than 20,000 scientific papers published on SS topics since the 1980s with more than 35,000 distinct authors. They estimated that the field is currently growing exponentially, with the number of authors doubling approximately every 8 years. These scholars are undoubtedly using and generating a vast quantity and variety of data and information for both SS research and applications. Unfortunately we know little about what data the SS community is actually using, and whether or not the data that SS scholars generate are being preserved for future use. Moreover, since much SS research is conducted by cross-disciplinary, multi-institutional teams, often scattered around the world, there could well be increased risks of data loss, reduced data quality, inadequate documentation, and poor long-term access and usability. Capabilities and processes therefore need to be established today to support continual, reliable, and efficient preservation of and access to SS data in the future, especially so that they can be reused in conjunction with future data and for new studies not conceived in the original data collection activities. Today's long-term data stewardship challenges include establishing sustainable data governance to facilitate continuing management, selecting data to ensure that limited resources are focused on high priority SS data holdings, securing sufficient rights to allow unforeseen uses, and preparing data to enable use by future communities whose specific research and information needs are not yet known. Adopting sustainable models for archival

  10. Independent Living for Livespan: a Healthy and Sustainable Architecture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vliet, van A.A.M.; Erkelens, P A; Jonge, de S; Vliet, van A A M

    2000-01-01

    Background Older growing persons face the consequences of their life, including diseases and impairments, which threaten the quality of life. Health definitions and sustainability have the environmental aspect and the quality of life in common. The focus in the sustainability theory is on a balance

  11. From sensorimotor learning to memory cells in prefrontal and temporal association cortex: a neurocomputational study of disembodiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulvermüller, Friedemann; Garagnani, Max

    2014-08-01

    Memory cells, the ultimate neurobiological substrates of working memory, remain active for several seconds and are most commonly found in prefrontal cortex and higher multisensory areas. However, if correlated activity in "embodied" sensorimotor systems underlies the formation of memory traces, why should memory cells emerge in areas distant from their antecedent activations in sensorimotor areas, thus leading to "disembodiment" (movement away from sensorimotor systems) of memory mechanisms? We modelled the formation of memory circuits in six-area neurocomputational architectures, implementing motor and sensory primary, secondary and higher association areas in frontotemporal cortices along with known between-area neuroanatomical connections. Sensorimotor learning driven by Hebbian neuroplasticity led to formation of cell assemblies distributed across the different areas of the network. These action-perception circuits (APCs) ignited fully when stimulated, thus providing a neural basis for long-term memory (LTM) of sensorimotor information linked by learning. Subsequent to ignition, activity vanished rapidly from APC neurons in sensorimotor areas but persisted in those in multimodal prefrontal and temporal areas. Such persistent activity provides a mechanism for working memory for actions, perceptions and symbols, including short-term phonological and semantic storage. Cell assembly ignition and "disembodied" working memory retreat of activity to multimodal areas are documented in the neurocomputational models' activity dynamics, at the level of single cells, circuits, and cortical areas. Memory disembodiment is explained neuromechanistically by APC formation and structural neuroanatomical features of the model networks, especially the central role of multimodal prefrontal and temporal cortices in bridging between sensory and motor areas. These simulations answer the "where" question of cortical working memory in terms of distributed APCs and their inner structure

  12. Sensorimotor Representation of Speech Perception. Cross-Decoding of Place of Articulation Features during Selective Attention to Syllables in 7T fMRI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Archila-Meléndez, Mario E.; Valente, Giancarlo; Correia, Joao M.; Rouhl, Rob P. W.; van Kranen-Mastenbroek, Vivianne H.; Jansma, Bernadette M.

    2018-01-01

    Sensorimotor integration, the translation between acoustic signals and motoric programs, may constitute a crucial mechanism for speech. During speech perception, the acoustic-motoric translations include the recruitment of cortical areas for the representation of speech articulatory features, such

  13. Development of a Protocol to Test Proprioceptive Utilization as a Predictor for Sensorimotor Adaptability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goel, R.; De Dios, Y. E.; Gadd, N. E.; Caldwell, E. E.; Peters, B. T.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Oddsson, L. I. E.; Mulavara, A. P.

    2016-01-01

    Astronauts returning from space flight show significant inter-subject variations in their abilities to readapt to a gravitational environment because of their innate sensory weighting. The ability to predict the manner and degree to which each individual astronaut will be affected would improve the effectiveness of countermeasure training programs designed to enhance sensorimotor adaptability. We hypothesize participant's ability to utilize individual sensory information (vision, proprioception and vestibular) influences adaptation in sensorimotor performance after space flight. The goal of this study is to develop a reliable protocol to test proprioceptive utilization in a functional postural control task. Subjects "stand" in a supine position while strapped to a backpack frame holding a friction-free device using air-bearings that allow the subject to move freely in the frontal plane, similar to when in upright standing. The frame is attached to a pneumatic cylinder, which can provide different levels of a gravity-like force that the subject must balance against to remain "upright". The supine posture with eyes closed ensures reduced vestibular and visual contribution to postural control suggesting somatosensory and/or non-otolith vestibular inputs will provide relevant information for maintaining balance control in this task. This setup is called the gravity bed. Fourteen healthy subjects carried out three trials each with eyes open alternated with eyes closed, "standing" on their dominant leg in the gravity bed environment while loaded with 60 percent of their body weight. Subjects were instructed to: "use your sense of sway about the ankle and pressure changes under the foot to maintain balance." Maximum length of a trial was 45 seconds. A force plate underneath the foot recorded forces and moments during the trial and an inertial measurement unit (IMU) attached on the backpack's frame near the center of mass of the subject recorded upper body postural

  14. Criteria for driver impairment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brookhuis, K.A.; De Waard, D.; Fairclough, S.H

    2003-01-01

    Most traffic accidents can be attributed to driver impairment, e.g. inattention, fatigue, intoxication, etc. It is now technically feasible to monitor and diagnose driver behaviour with respect to impairment with the aid of a limited number of in-vehicle sensors. However, a valid framework for the

  15. Interleukin-10/Ceftriaxone prevents E. coli-induced delays in sensorimotor task learning and spatial memory in neonatal and adult Sprague–Dawley rats

    OpenAIRE

    Wallace, K.L.; Lopez, J.; Shaffery, J.P.; Wells, A.; Paul, I.A.; Bennett, W.A.

    2010-01-01

    Intrauterine infection during pregnancy is associated with early activation of the fetal immune system and poor neurodevelopmental outcomes. Immune activation can lead to alterations in sensorimotor skills, changes in learning and memory and neural plasticity. Both interleukin-10 (IL-10) and Ceftriaxone have been shown to decrease immune system activation and increase memory capacity, respectively. Using a rodent model of intrauterine infection, we examined sensorimotor development in pups, l...

  16. Sensorimotor Functional and Structural Networks after Intracerebral Stem Cell Grafts in the Ischemic Mouse Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Claudia; Minassian, Anuka; Vogel, Stefanie; Diedenhofen, Michael; Beyrau, Andreas; Wiedermann, Dirk; Hoehn, Mathias

    2018-02-14

    Past investigations on stem cell-mediated recovery after stroke have limited their focus on the extent and morphological development of the ischemic lesion itself over time or on the integration capacity of the stem cell graft ex vivo However, an assessment of the long-term functional and structural improvement in vivo is essential to reliably quantify the regenerative capacity of cell implantation after stroke. We induced ischemic stroke in nude mice and implanted human neural stem cells (H9 derived) into the ipsilateral cortex in the acute phase. Functional and structural connectivity changes of the sensorimotor network were noninvasively monitored using magnetic resonance imaging for 3 months after stem cell implantation. A sharp decrease of the functional sensorimotor network extended even to the contralateral hemisphere, persisting for the whole 12 weeks of observation. In mice with stem cell implantation, functional networks were stabilized early on, pointing to a paracrine effect as an early supportive mechanism of the graft. This stabilization required the persistent vitality of the stem cells, monitored by bioluminescence imaging. Thus, we also observed deterioration of the early network stabilization upon vitality loss of the graft after a few weeks. Structural connectivity analysis showed fiber-density increases between the cortex and white matter regions occurring predominantly on the ischemic hemisphere. These fiber-density changes were nearly the same for both study groups. This motivated us to hypothesize that the stem cells can influence, via early paracrine effect, the functional networks, while observed structural changes are mainly stimulated by the ischemic event. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In recent years, research on strokes has made a shift away from a focus on immediate ischemic effects and towards an emphasis on the long-range effects of the lesion on the whole brain. Outcome improvements in stem cell therapies also require the understanding of

  17. Pilot Sensorimotor and Cardiovascular Results from the Joint Russian/U.S. Field Test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reschke, M. F.; Kozlovskaya, I. B.; Kofman, I. S.; Tomilovskya, E. S.; Cerisano, J. M.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Stenger, M. B.; Platts, S. H.; Rukavishnikov, I. V.; Fomina, E. V.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The primary goal of this research is to determine functional abilities associated with long-duration space flight crews beginning as soon after landing as possible (test in conjunction with postural ataxia testing (quiet stance sway) as well as cardiovascular responses during the other functional tasks. In addition to the immediate post-landing collection of data for the full FT, postflight data is being acquired twice more within the 24 hours after landing and will continue over the subsequent weeks until functional sensorimotor and cardiovascular responses have returned to preflight normative values. The PFT represents a initial evaluation of the feasibility of testing in the field, and is comprised of a jointly agreed upon subset of tests from the full FT and relies heavily on Russia's Institute of Biomedical Problems Sensory-Motor and Countermeasures Laboratories for content and implementation. The PFT has been collected on several ISS missions. Testing on the U.S. side has included: (1) a sit-to-stand test, (2) recovery from a fall where the crewmember began in the prone position on the ground and then stood for 3 minutes while cardiovascular stability was determined and postural ataxia data were acquired, and (3) a tandem heel-to-toe walk test to determine changes in the central locomotor program. Video, cardiovascular parameters (heart rate and blood pressure), data from bodyworn inertial sensors, and severity of postflight motion sickness were collected during each test session. Our Russian investigators have added measurements associated with: (a) obstacle avoidance, (b) muscle compliance and (c) postural adjustments to perturbations (push) applied to the subject's chest area. The level of functional deficit observed in the crew tested to date is typically beyond what was expected and is clearly triggered by the acquisition of gravity loads immediately after landing when the demands for crew intervention in response to emergency operations will be greatest

  18. The effect of D1 receptor on sensorimotor gating in animal model of schizophrenia-like behavior

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bubeníková-Valešová, V.; Valeš, Karel; Svoboda, Jan; Páleníček, T.; Horáček, J.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 18, Suppl.1 (2007), S69-S70 ISSN 0955-8810. [Biennial Meeting of the European Behavioural Pharmacology Society /12./. 31.08.2007-03.09.2007, Tübingen] R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 1M0517; GA ČR(CZ) GA309/07/0341; GA MZd(CZ) NR9178 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : dopamine * sensorimotor gating Subject RIV: FH - Neurology

  19. Sustainable NREL - Site Sustainability Plan FY 2015

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None, None

    2015-01-01

    NREL's Site Sustainability Plan FY 2015 reports on sustainability plans for the lab for the year 2015 based on Executive Order Goals and provides the status on planned actions cited in the FY 2014 report.

  20. Sustained-Paced Finger Tapping: A Novel Approach to Measure Internal Sustained Attention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco A. Petilli

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Sustained attention is a fundamental prerequisite for all cognitive functions and its impairment is a common aftermath of both developmental and acquired neurological disorders. To date, all the sustained attention tasks rely heavily on selective attention to external stimuli. The interaction between selective and sustained attention represents a limit in the field of assessment and may mislead researchers or distort conclusions. The aim of the present perspective study was to propose a sustained version of the Paced Finger Tapping (S-PFT test as a novel approach to measure sustained attention that does not leverage external stimuli. Here, we administered S-PFT and other attentional tasks (visual sustained attention, visuospatial attention capacity, selective attention, and divided attention tasks to 85 adolescents. Thus, we provide evidence suggesting that S-PFT is effective in causing performance decrement over time, an important trademark of sustained attention tasks. We also present descriptive statistics showing the relationship between S-PFT and the other attentional tasks. These analyses show that, unlike visual sustained attention tests, performances to our task of internal sustained attention were not correlated to measures of selective attention and visuospatial attention capacity. Our results suggest that S-PFT could represent a promising and alternative tool both for empirical research and clinical assessment of sustained attention.

  1. Right vs. left sensorimotor cortex suction-ablation in the rat: no difference in beam-walking recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, L B

    1995-03-13

    The ability of rats to traverse a narrow elevated beam has been used to quantitate recovery of hindlimb motor function after unilateral injury to the sensorimotor cortex. We tested the hypothesis that the rate of spontaneous beam-walking recovery varies with the side of the cortex lesion. Groups of rats that were trained at the beam-walking task underwent suction-ablation of either the right or left hindlimb sensorimotor cortex. There was no difference in hindlimb motor function between the groups on the first post-operative beam-waking trial carried out the day after cortex ablation and no difference between the groups in overall recovery rates over the next two weeks. Subsequent analyses of lesion surface parameters showed no differences in lesion size or extent. Regardless of the side of the lesion, there were also no differences between the right and left hemispheres in norepinephrine content of the lesioned or contralateral cortex. We conclude that the side of sensorimotor cortex ablation injury does not differentially affect the rate of spontaneous motor recovery as measured with the beam-walking task.

  2. A single high dose of escitalopram disrupts sensory gating and habituation, but not sensorimotor gating in healthy volunteers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oranje, Bob; Wienberg, Malene; Glenthøj, Birte Yding

    2011-01-01

    Early mechanisms to limit the input of sensory information to higher brain areas are important for a healthy individual. In previous studies, we found that a low dose of 10mg escitalopram (SSRI) disrupts habituation, without affecting sensory and sensorimotor gating in healthy volunteers. In the ......Early mechanisms to limit the input of sensory information to higher brain areas are important for a healthy individual. In previous studies, we found that a low dose of 10mg escitalopram (SSRI) disrupts habituation, without affecting sensory and sensorimotor gating in healthy volunteers....... In the current study a higher dose of 15mg was used. The hypothesis was that this higher dose of escitalopram would not only disrupt habituation, but also sensory and sensorimotor gating. Twenty healthy male volunteers received either placebo or 15mg escitalopram, after which they were tested in a P50...... suppression, and a habituation and prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the startle reflex paradigm. Escitalopram significantly decreased P50 suppression and habituation, but had no effect on PPI. The results indicate that habituation and sensory gating are disrupted by increased serotonergic activity, while...

  3. Spontaneous brain activity in the sensorimotor cortex in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis can be negatively regulated by corticospinal fiber integrity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sako, Wataru; Abe, Takashi; Izumi, Yuishin; Yamazaki, Hiroki; Matsui, Naoko; Harada, Masafumi; Kaji, Ryuji

    2017-05-01

    Previous studies failed to detect reduced value of the amplitude of low frequency fluctuation (ALFF) derived from resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging in the primary motor cortex in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) though primary motor cortex was mainly affected with ALS. We aimed to investigate the cause of masking the abnormality in the primary motor cortex in ALS and usefulness of ALFF for differential diagnosis among diseases showing muscle weakness. We enrolled ten patients with ALS and eleven disease controls showing muscle weakness. Voxel-wise analysis revealed that significant reduction of ALFF value was present in the right sensorimotor cortex in ALS. There was a significant negative correlation between ALFF value in the right sensorimotor cortex and fractional anisotropy (FA) value in the posterior limbs of the internal capsule (PLIC). For a diagnostic tool, the area under receiver operating characteristic curve improved if the ALS patients with disease duration >1 year were excluded. The present findings raised the possibility of usefulness of ALFF value in the sensorimotor cortex for differential diagnosis of ALS, and supported the notion that adjustment for FA value in the PLIC could improve accuracy.

  4. Facial expressions as a model to test the role of the sensorimotor system in the visual perception of the actions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mele, Sonia; Ghirardi, Valentina; Craighero, Laila

    2017-12-01

    A long-term debate concerns whether the sensorimotor coding carried out during transitive actions observation reflects the low-level movement implementation details or the movement goals. On the contrary, phonemes and emotional facial expressions are intransitive actions that do not fall into this debate. The investigation of phonemes discrimination has proven to be a good model to demonstrate that the sensorimotor system plays a role in understanding actions acoustically presented. In the present study, we adapted the experimental paradigms already used in phonemes discrimination during face posture manipulation, to the discrimination of emotional facial expressions. We submitted participants to a lower or to an upper face posture manipulation during the execution of a four alternative labelling task of pictures randomly taken from four morphed continua between two emotional facial expressions. The results showed that the implementation of low-level movement details influence the discrimination of ambiguous facial expressions differing for a specific involvement of those movement details. These findings indicate that facial expressions discrimination is a good model to test the role of the sensorimotor system in the perception of actions visually presented.

  5. Sustainability : Politics and governance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heinrichs, Harald; Biermann, Frank

    2016-01-01

    he article gives an overview of global sustainability policy and politics. It is shown how international policy making on sustainable development has progressed from environmental policy toward recent approaches of Earth system governance. Key challenges of international sustainability politics are

  6. Sustainability in Transport Planning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gudmundsson, Henrik; Greve, Carsten

    Contribution to session J: Joint University Sustainability Initiatives. This session will provide an inspiring overview of interdisciplinary research and teaching activities on sustainability bridging DTU, KU, and CBS, and introduce the joint collaboration Copenhagen Sustainability Initiative (COSI...

  7. Textiles and clothing sustainability sustainable technologies

    CERN Document Server

    2017-01-01

    This is the first book to deal with the innovative technologies in the field of textiles and clothing sustainability. It details a number of sustainable and innovative technologies and highlights their implications in the clothing sector. There are currently various measures to achieve sustainability in the textiles and the clothing industry, including innovations in the manufacturing stage, which is the crux of this book.

  8. Sustainable diets within sustainable food systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meybeck, Alexandre; Gitz, Vincent

    2017-02-01

    Sustainable diets and sustainable food systems are increasingly explored by diverse scientific disciplines. They are also recognised by the international community and called upon to orient action towards the eradication of hunger and malnutrition and the fulfilment of sustainable development goals. The aim of the present paper is to briefly consider some of the links between these two notions in order to facilitate the operationalisation of the concept of sustainable diet. The concept of sustainable diet was defined in 2010 combining two totally different perspectives: a nutrition perspective, focused on individuals, and a global sustainability perspective, in all its dimensions: environmental, economic and social. The nutrition perspective can be easily related to health outcomes. The global sustainability perspective is more difficult to analyse directly. We propose that it be measured as the contribution of a diet to the sustainability of food systems. Such an approach, covering the three dimensions of sustainability, enables identification of interactions and interrelations between food systems and diets. It provides opportunities to find levers of change towards sustainability. Diets are both the results and the drivers of food systems. The drivers of change for those variously involved, consumers and private individuals, are different, and can be triggered by different dimensions (heath, environment, social and cultural). Combining different dimensions and reasons for change can help facilitate the transition to sustainable diets, recognising the food system's specificities. The adoption of sustainable diets can be facilitated and enabled by food systems, and by appropriate policies and incentives.

  9. Distributed cerebellar plasticity implements generalized multiple-scale memory components in real-robot sensorimotor tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia eCasellato

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The cerebellum plays a crucial role in motor learning and it acts as a predictive controller. Modeling it and embedding it into sensorimotor tasks allows us to create functional links between plasticity mechanisms, neural circuits and behavioral learning. Moreover, if applied to real-time control of a neurorobot, the cerebellar model has to deal with a real noisy and changing environment, thus showing its robustness and effectiveness in learning. A biologically inspired cerebellar model with distributed plasticity, both at cortical and nuclear sites, has been used. Two cerebellum-mediated paradigms have been designed: an associative Pavlovian task and a vestibulo-ocular reflex, with multiple sessions of acquisition and extinction and with different stimuli and perturbation patterns. The cerebellar controller succeeded to generate conditioned responses and finely tuned eye movement compensation, thus reproducing human-like behaviors. Through a productive plasticity transfer from cortical to nuclear sites, the distributed cerebellar controller showed in both tasks the capability to optimize learning on multiple time-scales, to store motor memory and to effectively adapt to dynamic ranges of stimuli.

  10. Gamma knife radiosurgery for arteriovenous malformations located in the sensorimotor cortex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yamanaka, Kazuhiro; Iwai, Yoshiyasu; Komiyama, Masaki; Nakajima, Hideki; Yasui, Toshihiro; Nishikawa, Misao; Sakamoto, Hiroaki; Morikawa, Toshie [Osaka City General Hospital (Japan)

    2002-05-01

    The goal of this study was to define treatment results of gamma knife radiosurgery (GKS) for arteriovenous malformation (AVM) located in the sensorimotor cortex. We analyzed 27 patients followed up for at least 12 months. The onset of AVM was convulsion 10, clinical hemorrhage 7, neurological deficits 4, and headache 3. The mean diameter of the AVM nidus was 22.2 mm (range 8.5-33.6 mm) and mean volume was 7.4 ml (range 0.32-19.9 ml). According to the Spetzler-Martin scale, the AVMs were Grade II in 13, Grade III in 10, and Grade IV in 4 of the patients. GKS was performed with a mean dose of 19.0 Gy (range 14-25 Gy) to the margin of the nidus. The mean follow-up period was 29 months (range 12-72 months). Six AVMs showed complete obliteration angiographically and 5 AVMs showed obliteration on magnetic resonance image. Sixteen AVMs showed nidus shrinkage. Eight (53%) of 15 patients followed up for more than 24 months showed obliteration. Complications consisted of 32 (11.5%) of 27 patients with evidence of radiation injury to the brain parenchyma. Symptoms of slight hemiparesis resolved completely in all patients within several months. (author)

  11. Model-based sensorimotor integration for multi-joint control: development of a virtual arm model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, D; Lan, N; Loeb, G E; Gordon, J

    2008-06-01

    An integrated, sensorimotor virtual arm (VA) model has been developed and validated for simulation studies of control of human arm movements. Realistic anatomical features of shoulder, elbow and forearm joints were captured with a graphic modeling environment, SIMM. The model included 15 musculotendon elements acting at the shoulder, elbow and forearm. Muscle actions on joints were evaluated by SIMM generated moment arms that were matched to experimentally measured profiles. The Virtual Muscle (VM) model contained appropriate admixture of slow and fast twitch fibers with realistic physiological properties for force production. A realistic spindle model was embedded in each VM with inputs of fascicle length, gamma static (gamma(stat)) and dynamic (gamma(dyn)) controls and outputs of primary (I(a)) and secondary (II) afferents. A piecewise linear model of Golgi Tendon Organ (GTO) represented the ensemble sampling (I(b)) of the total muscle force at the tendon. All model components were integrated into a Simulink block using a special software tool. The complete VA model was validated with open-loop simulation at discrete hand positions within the full range of alpha and gamma drives to extrafusal and intrafusal muscle fibers. The model behaviors were consistent with a wide variety of physiological phenomena. Spindle afferents were effectively modulated by fusimotor drives and hand positions of the arm. These simulations validated the VA model as a computational tool for studying arm movement control. The VA model is available to researchers at website http://pt.usc.edu/cel .

  12. A biorobotic model of the sunfish pectoral fin for investigations of fin sensorimotor control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phelan, Chris; Tangorra, James; Lauder, George; Hale, Melina

    2010-01-01

    A comprehensive understanding of the control of flexible fins is fundamental to engineering underwater vehicles that perform like fish, since it is the fins that produce forces which control the fish's motion. However, little is known about the fin's sensory system or about how fish use sensory information to modulate the fin and to control propulsive forces. As part of a research program that involves neuromechanical and behavioral studies of the sunfish pectoral fin, a biorobotic model of the pectoral fin and of the fin's sensorimotor system was developed and used to investigate relationships between sensory information, fin ray motions and propulsive forces. This robotic fin is able to generate the motions and forces of the biological fin during steady swimming and turn maneuvers, and is instrumented with a relatively small set of sensors that represent the biological lateral line and receptors hypothesized to exist intrinsic to the pectoral fin. Results support the idea that fin ray curvature, and the pressure in the flow along the wall that represents the fish body, capture time-varying characteristics of the magnitude and direction of the force created throughout a fin beat. However, none of the sensor modalities alone are sufficient to predict the propulsive force. Knowledge of the time-varying force vector with sufficient detail for the closed-loop control of fin ray motion will result from the integration of characteristics of many sensor modalities.

  13. Risk-sensitive optimal feedback control accounts for sensorimotor behavior under uncertainty.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arne J Nagengast

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Many aspects of human motor behavior can be understood using optimality principles such as optimal feedback control. However, these proposed optimal control models are risk-neutral; that is, they are indifferent to the variability of the movement cost. Here, we propose the use of a risk-sensitive optimal controller that incorporates movement cost variance either as an added cost (risk-averse controller or as an added value (risk-seeking controller to model human motor behavior in the face of uncertainty. We use a sensorimotor task to test the hypothesis that subjects are risk-sensitive. Subjects controlled a virtual ball undergoing Brownian motion towards a target. Subjects were required to minimize an explicit cost, in points, that was a combination of the final positional error of the ball and the integrated control cost. By testing subjects on different levels of Brownian motion noise and relative weighting of the position and control cost, we could distinguish between risk-sensitive and risk-neutral control. We show that subjects change their movement strategy pessimistically in the face of increased uncertainty in accord with the predictions of a risk-averse optimal controller. Our results suggest that risk-sensitivity is a fundamental attribute that needs to be incorporated into optimal feedback control models.

  14. Humans can integrate force feedback to toes in their sensorimotor control of a robotic hand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panarese, Alessandro; Edin, Benoni B; Vecchi, Fabrizio; Carrozza, Maria C; Johansson, Roland S

    2009-12-01

    Tactile sensory feedback is essential for dexterous object manipulation. Users of hand myoelectric prostheses without tactile feedback must depend essentially on vision to control their device. Indeed, improved tactile feedback is one of their main priorities. Previous research has provided evidence that conveying tactile feedback can improve prostheses control, although additional effort is required to solve problems related to pattern recognition learning, unpleasant sensations, sensory adaptation, and low spatiotemporal resolution. Still, these studies have mainly focused on providing stimulation to hairy skin regions close to the amputation site, i.e., usually to the upper arm. Here, we explored the possibility to provide tactile feedback to the glabrous skin of toes, which have mechanical and neurophysiological properties similar to the fingertips. We explored this paradigm in a grasp-and-lift task, in which healthy participants controlled two opposing digits of a robotic hand by changing the spacing of their index finger and thumb. The normal forces applied by the robotic fingertips to a test object were fed back to the right big and second toe. We show that within a few lifting trials, all the participants incorporated the force feedback received by the foot in their sensorimotor control of the robotic hand.

  15. A biorobotic model of the sunfish pectoral fin for investigations of fin sensorimotor control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Phelan, Chris; Tangorra, James [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Lauder, George [Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138 (United States); Hale, Melina, E-mail: tangorra@coe.drexel.ed [Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637 (United States)

    2010-09-15

    A comprehensive understanding of the control of flexible fins is fundamental to engineering underwater vehicles that perform like fish, since it is the fins that produce forces which control the fish's motion. However, little is known about the fin's sensory system or about how fish use sensory information to modulate the fin and to control propulsive forces. As part of a research program that involves neuromechanical and behavioral studies of the sunfish pectoral fin, a biorobotic model of the pectoral fin and of the fin's sensorimotor system was developed and used to investigate relationships between sensory information, fin ray motions and propulsive forces. This robotic fin is able to generate the motions and forces of the biological fin during steady swimming and turn maneuvers, and is instrumented with a relatively small set of sensors that represent the biological lateral line and receptors hypothesized to exist intrinsic to the pectoral fin. Results support the idea that fin ray curvature, and the pressure in the flow along the wall that represents the fish body, capture time-varying characteristics of the magnitude and direction of the force created throughout a fin beat. However, none of the sensor modalities alone are sufficient to predict the propulsive force. Knowledge of the time-varying force vector with sufficient detail for the closed-loop control of fin ray motion will result from the integration of characteristics of many sensor modalities.

  16. Differential recruitment of the sensorimotor putamen and frontoparietal cortex during motor chunking in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wymbs, Nicholas F; Bassett, Danielle S; Mucha, Peter J; Porter, Mason A; Grafton, Scott T

    2012-06-07

    Motor chunking facilitates movement production by combining motor elements into integrated units of behavior. Previous research suggests that chunking involves two processes: concatenation, aimed at the formation of motor-motor associations between elements or sets of elements, and segmentation, aimed at the parsing of multiple contiguous elements into shorter action sets. We used fMRI to measure the trial-wise recruitment of brain regions associated with these chunking processes as healthy subjects performed a cued-sequence production task. A dynamic network analysis identified chunking structure for a set of motor sequences acquired during fMRI and collected over 3 days of training. Activity in the bilateral sensorimotor putamen positively correlated with chunk concatenation, whereas a left-hemisphere frontoparietal network was correlated with chunk segmentation. Across subjects, there was an aggregate increase in chunk strength (concatenation) with training, suggesting that subcortical circuits play a direct role in the creation of fluid transitions across chunks. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Influence of sympathetic nervous system on sensorimotor function: whiplash associated disorders (WAD) as a model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passatore, Magda; Roatta, Silvestro

    2006-11-01

    There is increasing interest about the possible involvement of the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) in initiation and maintenance of chronic muscle pain syndromes of different aetiology. Epidemiological data show that stresses of different nature, e.g. work-related, psychosocial, etc., typically characterised by SNS activation, may be a co-factor in the development of the pain syndrome and/or negatively affect its time course. In spite of their clear traumatic origin, whiplash associated disorders (WAD) appear to share many common features with other chronic pain syndromes affecting the musculo-skeletal system. These features do not only include symptoms, like type of pain or sensory and motor dysfunctions, but possibly also some of the pathophysiological mechanisms that may concur to establish the chronic pain syndrome. This review focuses on WAD, particular emphasis being devoted to sensorimotor symptoms, and on the actions exerted by the sympathetic system at muscle level. Besides its well-known action on muscle blood flow, the SNS is able to affect the contractility of muscle fibres, to modulate the proprioceptive information arising from the muscle spindle receptors and, under certain conditions, to modulate nociceptive information. Furthermore, the activity of the SNS itself is in turn affected by muscle conditions, such as its current state of activity, fatigue and pain signals originating in the muscle. The possible involvement of the SNS in the development of WAD is discussed in light of the several positive feedback loops in which it is implicated.

  18. Distinct roles of visual, parietal, and frontal motor cortices in memory-guided sensorimotor decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goard, Michael J; Pho, Gerald N; Woodson, Jonathan; Sur, Mriganka

    2016-08-04

    Mapping specific sensory features to future motor actions is a crucial capability of mammalian nervous systems. We investigated the role of visual (V1), posterior parietal (PPC), and frontal motor (fMC) cortices for sensorimotor mapping in mice during performance of a memory-guided visual discrimination task. Large-scale calcium imaging revealed that V1, PPC, and fMC neurons exhibited heterogeneous responses spanning all task epochs (stimulus, delay, response). Population analyses demonstrated unique encoding of stimulus identity and behavioral choice information across regions, with V1 encoding stimulus, fMC encoding choice even early in the trial, and PPC multiplexing the two variables. Optogenetic inhibition during behavior revealed that all regions were necessary during the stimulus epoch, but only fMC was required during the delay and response epochs. Stimulus identity can thus be rapidly transformed into behavioral choice, requiring V1, PPC, and fMC during the transformation period, but only fMC for maintaining the choice in memory prior to execution.

  19. Vocal Tract Images Reveal Neural Representations of Sensorimotor Transformation During Speech Imitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carey, Daniel; Miquel, Marc E.; Evans, Bronwen G.; Adank, Patti; McGettigan, Carolyn

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Imitating speech necessitates the transformation from sensory targets to vocal tract motor output, yet little is known about the representational basis of this process in the human brain. Here, we address this question by using real-time MR imaging (rtMRI) of the vocal tract and functional MRI (fMRI) of the brain in a speech imitation paradigm. Participants trained on imitating a native vowel and a similar nonnative vowel that required lip rounding. Later, participants imitated these vowels and an untrained vowel pair during separate fMRI and rtMRI runs. Univariate fMRI analyses revealed that regions including left inferior frontal gyrus were more active during sensorimotor transformation (ST) and production of nonnative vowels, compared with native vowels; further, ST for nonnative vowels activated somatomotor cortex bilaterally, compared with ST of native vowels. Using test representational similarity analysis (RSA) models constructed from participants’ vocal tract images and from stimulus formant distances, we found that RSA searchlight analyses of fMRI data showed either type of model could be represented in somatomotor, temporal, cerebellar, and hippocampal neural activation patterns during ST. We thus provide the first evidence of widespread and robust cortical and subcortical neural representation of vocal tract and/or formant parameters, during prearticulatory ST. PMID:28334401

  20. Gesture Decoding Using ECoG Signals from Human Sensorimotor Cortex: A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yue Li

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Electrocorticography (ECoG has been demonstrated as a promising neural signal source for developing brain-machine interfaces (BMIs. However, many concerns about the disadvantages brought by large craniotomy for implanting the ECoG grid limit the clinical translation of ECoG-based BMIs. In this study, we collected clinical ECoG signals from the sensorimotor cortex of three epileptic participants when they performed hand gestures. The ECoG power spectrum in hybrid frequency bands was extracted to build a synchronous real-time BMI system. High decoding accuracy of the three gestures was achieved in both offline analysis (85.7%, 84.5%, and 69.7% and online tests (80% and 82%, tested on two participants only. We found that the decoding performance was maintained even with a subset of channels selected by a greedy algorithm. More importantly, these selected channels were mostly distributed along the central sulcus and clustered in the area of 3 interelectrode squares. Our findings of the reduced and clustered distribution of ECoG channels further supported the feasibility of clinically implementing the ECoG-based BMI system for the control of hand gestures.

  1. Gamma band oscillations under influence of bromazepam during a sensorimotor integration task: an EEG coherence study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minc, Daniel; Machado, Sergio; Bastos, Victor Hugo; Machado, Dionis; Cunha, Marlo; Cagy, Mauricio; Budde, Henning; Basile, Luis; Piedade, Roberto; Ribeiro, Pedro

    2010-01-18

    The goal of the present study was to explore the dynamics of the gamma band using the coherence of the quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) in a sensorimotor integration task and the influence of the neuromodulator bromazepam on the band behavior. Our hypothesis is that the needs of the typewriting task will demand the coupling of different brain areas, and that the gamma band will promote the binding of information. It is also expected that the neuromodulator will modify this coupling. The sample was composed of 39 healthy subjects. We used a randomized double-blind design and divided subjects into three groups: placebo (n=13), bromazepam 3mg (n=13) and bromazepam 6 mg (n=13). The two-way ANOVA analysis demonstrated a main effect for the factors condition (i.e., C4-CZ electrode pair) and moment (i.e., C3-CZ, C3-C4 and C4-CZ pairs of electrodes). We propose that the gamma band plays an important role in the binding among several brain areas in complex motor tasks and that each hemisphere is influenced in a different manner by the neuromodulator. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. On the nature of phase attraction in sensorimotor synchronization with interleaved auditory sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repp, Bruno H

    2004-10-01

    In a task that requires in-phase synchronization of finger taps with an isochronous sequence of target tones that is interleaved with a sequence of distractor tones at various fixed phase relationships, the taps tend to be attracted to the distractor tones, especially when the distractor tones closely precede the target tones [Repp, B. H. (2003a). Phase attraction in sensorimotor synchronization with auditory sequences: Effects of single and periodic distractors on synchronization accuracy. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 29, 290-309]. The present research addressed two related questions about this distractor effect: (1) Is it a function of the absolute temporal separation or of the relative phase of the two stimulus sequences? (2) Is it the result of perceptual grouping (integration) of target and distractor tones or of simultaneous attraction to two independent sequences? In three experiments, distractor effects were compared across two different sequence rates. The results suggest that absolute temporal separation, not relative phase, is the critical variable. Experiment 3 also included an anti-phase tapping task that addressed the second question directly. The results suggest that the attraction of taps to distractor tones is caused mainly by temporal integration of target and distractor tones within a fixed window of 100-150 ms duration, with the earlier-occurring tone being weighted more strongly than the later-occurring one.

  3. Feature Interactions Enable Decoding of Sensorimotor Transformations for Goal-Directed Movement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barany, Deborah A.; Della-Maggiore, Valeria; Viswanathan, Shivakumar; Cieslak, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Neurophysiology and neuroimaging evidence shows that the brain represents multiple environmental and body-related features to compute transformations from sensory input to motor output. However, it is unclear how these features interact during goal-directed movement. To investigate this issue, we examined the representations of sensory and motor features of human hand movements within the left-hemisphere motor network. In a rapid event-related fMRI design, we measured cortical activity as participants performed right-handed movements at the wrist, with either of two postures and two amplitudes, to move a cursor to targets at different locations. Using a multivoxel analysis technique with rigorous generalization tests, we reliably distinguished representations of task-related features (primarily target location, movement direction, and posture) in multiple regions. In particular, we identified an interaction between target location and movement direction in the superior parietal lobule, which may underlie a transformation from the location of the target in space to a movement vector. In addition, we found an influence of posture on primary motor, premotor, and parietal regions. Together, these results reveal the complex interactions between different sensory and motor features that drive the computation of sensorimotor transformations. PMID:24828640

  4. Sensorimotor synchronization and perception of timing: effects of music training and task experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Repp, Bruno H

    2010-04-01

    To assess individual differences in basic synchronization skills and in perceptual sensitivity to timing deviations, brief tests made up of isochronous auditory sequences containing phase shifts or tempo changes were administered to 31 college students (most of them with little or no music training) and nine highly trained musicians (graduate students of music performance). Musicians showed smaller asynchronies, lower tapping variability, and greater perceptual sensitivity than college students, on average. They also showed faster phase correction following a tempo change in the pacing sequence. Unexpectedly, however, phase correction following a simple phase shift was unusually quick in both groups, especially in college students. It emerged that some of the musicians, who had previous experience with laboratory synchronization tasks, showed a much slower corrective response to phase shifts than did the other musicians. When these others were retested after having gained some task experience, their phase correction was slower than previously. These results show (1) that instantaneous phase correction in response to phase perturbations is more common than was previously believed, and suggest that (2) gradual phase correction is not a shortcoming but reflects a reduction in the strength of sensorimotor coupling afforded by practice.

  5. Interactional leader–follower sensorimotor communication strategies during repetitive joint actions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candidi, Matteo; Curioni, Arianna; Donnarumma, Francesco; Sacheli, Lucia Maria; Pezzulo, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    Non-verbal communication is the basis of animal interactions. In dyadic leader–follower interactions, leaders master the ability to carve their motor behaviour in order to ‘signal’ their future actions and internal plans while these signals influence the behaviour of follower partners, who automatically tend to imitate the leader even in complementary interactions. Despite their usefulness, signalling and imitation have a biomechanical cost, and it is unclear how this cost–benefits trade-off is managed during repetitive dyadic interactions that present learnable regularities. We studied signalling and imitation dynamics (indexed by movement kinematics) in pairs of leaders and followers during a repetitive, rule-based, joint action. Trial-by-trial Bayesian model comparison was used to evaluate the relation between signalling, imitation and pair performance. The different models incorporate different hypotheses concerning the factors (past interactions versus online movements) influencing the leader's signalling (or follower's imitation) kinematics. This approach showed that (i) leaders' signalling strategy improves future couple performance, (ii) leaders used the history of past interactions to shape their signalling, (iii) followers' imitative behaviour is more strongly affected by the online movement of the leader. This study elucidates the ways online sensorimotor communication help individuals align their task representations and ultimately improves joint action performance. PMID:26333815

  6. Functional mapping of the sensorimotor cortex: combined use of magnetoencephalography, functional MRI, and motor evoked potentials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morioka, T.; Fujii, K.; Fukui, M.; Mizushima, A.; Matsumoto, S.; Hasuo, K.; Yamamoto, T.; Tobimatsu, S.

    1995-01-01

    Combined use of magnetoencephalography (MEG), functional magnetic resonance imaging (f-MRI), and motor evoked potentials (MEPs) was carried out on one patient in an attempt to localise precisely a structural lesion to the central sulcus. A small cyst in the right frontoparietal region was thought to be the cause of generalised seizures in an otherwise asymptomatic woman. First the primary sensory cortex was identified with magnetic source imaging (MSI) of somatosensory evoked magnetic fields using MEG and MRI. Second, the motor area of the hand was identified using f-MRI during handsqueezing. Then transcranial magnetic stimulation localised the hand motor area on the scalp, which was mapped onto the MRI. There was a good agreement between MSI, f-MRI and MEP as to the location of the sensorimotor cortex and its relationship to the lesion. Multimodality mapping techniques may thus prove useful in the precise localisation of cortical lesions, and in the preoperative determination of the best treatment for peri-rolandic lesions. (orig.)

  7. Functional mapping of the sensorimotor cortex: combined use of magnetoencephalography, functional MRI, and motor evoked potentials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morioka, T. [Dept. of Neurosurgery, Neurological Inst., Kyshu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan); Fujii, K. [Dept. of Neurosurgery, Neurological Inst., Kyshu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan); Fukui, M. [Dept. of Neurosurgery, Neurological Inst., Kyshu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan); Mizushima, A. [Dept. of Radiology, Kyushu Univ. Fukuoka (Japan); Matsumoto, S. [Dept. of Radiology, Kyushu Univ. Fukuoka (Japan); Hasuo, K. [Dept. of Radiology, Kyushu Univ. Fukuoka (Japan); Yamamoto, T. [Dept. of Otolaryngology, Kyushu Univ. Fukuoka (Japan); Tobimatsu, S. [Dept. of Clinical Neurophysiology, Neurological Inst., Kyushu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan)

    1995-10-01

    Combined use of magnetoencephalography (MEG), functional magnetic resonance imaging (f-MRI), and motor evoked potentials (MEPs) was carried out on one patient in an attempt to localise precisely a structural lesion to the central sulcus. A small cyst in the right frontoparietal region was thought to be the cause of generalised seizures in an otherwise asymptomatic woman. First the primary sensory cortex was identified with magnetic source imaging (MSI) of somatosensory evoked magnetic fields using MEG and MRI. Second, the motor area of the hand was identified using f-MRI during handsqueezing. Then transcranial magnetic stimulation localised the hand motor area on the scalp, which was mapped onto the MRI. There was a good agreement between MSI, f-MRI and MEP as to the location of the sensorimotor cortex and its relationship to the lesion. Multimodality mapping techniques may thus prove useful in the precise localisation of cortical lesions, and in the preoperative determination of the best treatment for peri-rolandic lesions. (orig.)

  8. Ontogeny of sensorimotor gating and short-term memory processing throughout the adolescent period in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja A. Goepfrich

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Adolescence and puberty are highly susceptible developmental periods during which the neuronal organization and maturation of the brain is completed. The endocannabinoid (eCB system, which is well known to modulate cognitive processing, undergoes profound and transient developmental changes during adolescence. With the present study we were aiming to examine the ontogeny of cognitive skills throughout adolescence in male rats and clarify the potential modulatory role of CB1 receptor signalling. Cognitive skills were assessed repeatedly every 10th day in rats throughout adolescence. All animals were tested for object recognition memory and prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle reflex. Although cognitive performance in short-term memory as well as sensorimotor gating abilities were decreased during puberty compared to adulthood, both tasks were found to show different developmental trajectories throughout adolescence. A low dose of the CB1 receptor antagonist/inverse agonist SR141716 was found to improve recognition memory specifically in pubertal animals while not affecting behavioral performance at other ages tested. The present findings demonstrate that the developmental trajectory of cognitive abilities does not occur linearly for all cognitive processes and is strongly influenced by pubertal maturation. Developmental alterations within the eCB system at puberty onset may be involved in these changes in cognitive processing.

  9. Sensorimotor cortical activity in patients with complete spinal cord injury: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabbah, P; de, Schonen S; Leveque, C; Gay, S; Pfefer, F; Nioche, C; Sarrazin, J L; Barouti, H; Tadie, M; Cordoliani, Y S

    2002-01-01

    Residual activation of the cortex was investigated in nine patients with complete spinal cord injury between T6 and L1 by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Brain activations were recorded under four conditions: (1) a patient attempting to move his toes with flexion-extension, (2) a patient imagining the same movement, (3) passive proprio-somesthesic stimulation of the big toes without visual control, and (4) passive proprio-somesthesic stimulation of the big toes with visual control by the patient. Passive proprio-somesthesic stimulation of the toes generated activation posterior to the central sulcus in the three patients who also showed a somesthesic evoked potential response to somesthesic stimulation. When performed under visual control, activations were observed in two more patients. In all patients, activations were found in the cortical areas involved in motor control (i.e., primary sensorimotor cortex, premotor regions and supplementary motor area [SMA]) during attempts to move or mental imagery of these tasks. It is concluded that even several years after injury with some local cortical reorganization, activation of lower limb cortical networks can be generated either by the attempt to move, the mental evocation of the action, or the visual feedback of a passive proprio-somesthesic stimulation.

  10. Navigating beyond ‘here & now’ affordances - on sensorimotor maturation and ‘false belief’ performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria eBrincker

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available How and when do we learn to understand other people’s perspectives and possibly divergent beliefs? This question has elicited much theoretical and empirical research. A puzzling finding has been that toddlers perform well on so-called implicit false belief (FB tasks but do not show such capacities on traditional explicit FB tasks. I propose a navigational approach, which offers a hitherto ignored way of making sense of the seemingly contradictory results. The proposal involves a distinction between how we navigate FBs as they relate to 1 our current affordances (here & now navigation as opposed to 2 presently non-actual relations, where we need to leave our concrete embodied/situated viewpoint (counterfactual navigation. It is proposed that whereas toddlers seem able to understand FBs in their current affordance space, they do not yet possess the resources to navigate in abstraction from such concrete affordances, which explicit FB tests seem to require. It is hypothesized that counterfactual navigation depends on the development of ‘sensorimotor priors’, i.e. statistical expectations of own kinestetic re-afference, which evidence now suggests matures around age four, consistent with core findings of explicit FB performance.

  11. Working Memory and Auditory Imagery Predict Sensorimotor Synchronization with Expressively Timed Music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colley, Ian D; Keller, Peter E; Halpern, Andrea R

    2017-08-11

    Sensorimotor synchronization (SMS) is prevalent and readily studied in musical settings, as most people are able to perceive and synchronize with a beat (e.g. by finger tapping). We took an individual differences approach to understanding SMS to real music characterized by expressive timing (i.e. fluctuating beat regularity). Given the dynamic nature of SMS, we hypothesized that individual differences in working memory and auditory imagery-both fluid cognitive processes-would predict SMS at two levels: 1) mean absolute asynchrony (a measure of synchronization error), and 2) anticipatory timing (i.e. predicting, rather than reacting to beat intervals). In Experiment 1, participants completed two working memory tasks, four auditory imagery tasks, and an SMS-tapping task. Hierarchical regression models were used to predict SMS performance, with results showing dissociations among imagery types in relation to mean absolute asynchrony, and evidence of a role for working memory in anticipatory timing. In Experiment 2, a new sample of participants completed an expressive timing perception task to examine the role of imagery in perception without action. Results suggest that imagery vividness is important for perceiving and control is important for synchronizing with, irregular but ecologically valid musical time series. Working memory is implicated in synchronizing by anticipating events in the series.

  12. Chronological changes in astrocytes induced by chronic electrical sensorimotor cortex stimulation in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morishita, Takashi; Yamashita, Akiko; Katayama, Yoichi; Oshima, Hideki; Nishizaki, Yuji; Shijo, Katsunori; Fukaya, Chikashi; Yamamoto, Takamitsu

    2011-01-01

    Motor cortex stimulation (MCS) is a treatment option for various disorders such as medically refractory pain, poststroke hemiplegia, and movement disorders. However, the exact mechanisms underlying its effects remain unknown. In this study, the effects of long-term chronic MCS were investigated by observing changes in astrocytes. A quadripolar stimulation electrode was implanted on the dura over the sensorimotor cortex of adult rats, and the cortex was continuously stimulated for 3 hours, 1 week, 4 weeks, and 8 weeks. Immunohistochemical staining of microglia (ionized calcium-binding adaptor molecule 1 [Iba1] staining) and astrocytes (glial fibrillary acidic protein [GFAP] staining), and neuronal degeneration histochemistry (Fluoro-Jade B staining) were carried out to investigate the morphological changes following long-term chronic MCS. Iba1 staining and Fluoro-Jade B staining showed no evidence of Iba1-positive microglial changes or neurodegeneration. Following continuous MCS, GFAP-positive astrocytes were enlarged and their number increased in the cortex and the thalamus of the stimulated hemisphere. These findings indicate that chronic electrical stimulation can continuously activate astrocytes and result in morphological and quantitative changes. These changes may be involved in the mechanisms underlying the neuroplasticity effect induced by MCS.

  13. Parkinson’s - is time on your side? Evidence for difficulties with sensorimotor synchronisation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta eBieńkiewicz

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available There is lack of consistent evidence as to how well PD patients are able to accurately time their movements across space with an external acoustic signal. For years, research based on the finger-tapping paradigm, the most popular paradigm for exploring the brain’s ability to time movement, has provided strong evidence that patients are not able to accurately reproduce an isochronous interval (i.e. Harrington, Haaland, & Knight, 1998. This was undermined by Spencer and Ivry (2005 who suggested a specific deficit in temporal control linked to emergent, rhythmical movement not event-based actions, which primarily involve the cerebellum. In this study we investigated motor timing of seven idiopathic PD participants in event-based sensorimotor synchronisation task. Participants were asked to move their finger horizontally between two predefined target zones to synchronise with the occurrence of two sound events at two time intervals (1.5 and 2.5 seconds. The width of the targets and the distance between them were manipulated to investigate impact of accuracy demands and movement amplitude on timing performance. The results showed that participants with PD demonstrated specific difficulties when trying to accurately synchronise their movements to a beat. The extent to which their ability to synchronise movement was compromised was found to be related to the severity of PD, but independent of the spatial constraints of the task.

  14. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexandrov, Alexei V; Lippi, Vittorio; Mergner, Thomas; Frolov, Alexander A; Hettich, Georg; Husek, Dusan

    2017-01-01

    Control of a multi-body system in both robots and humans may face the problem of destabilizing dynamic coupling effects arising between linked body segments. The state of the art solutions in robotics are full state feedback controllers. For human hip-ankle coordination, a more parsimonious and theoretically stable alternative to the robotics solution has been suggested in terms of the Eigenmovement (EM) control. Eigenmovements are kinematic synergies designed to describe the multi DoF system, and its control, with a set of independent, and hence coupling-free , scalar equations. This paper investigates whether the EM alternative shows "real-world robustness" against noisy and inaccurate sensors, mechanical non-linearities such as dead zones, and human-like feedback time delays when controlling hip-ankle movements of a balancing humanoid robot. The EM concept and the EM controller are introduced, the robot's dynamics are identified using a biomechanical approach, and robot tests are performed in a human posture control laboratory. The tests show that the EM controller provides stable control of the robot with proactive ("voluntary") movements and reactive balancing of stance during support surface tilts and translations. Although a preliminary robot-human comparison reveals similarities and differences, we conclude (i) the Eigenmovement concept is a valid candidate when different concepts of human sensorimotor control are considered, and (ii) that human-inspired robot experiments may help to decide in future the choice among the candidates and to improve the design of humanoid robots and robotic rehabilitation devices.

  15. Influence of ondansetron on gastric sensorimotor responses to short duodenal acid infusion in healthy volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanuytsel, T; Karamanolis, G; Van Oudenhove, L; Oudenhove, L V; Vos, R; Tack, J

    2011-03-01

    Duodenal acid infusion induces gastric relaxation and sensitization to distension in healthy volunteers. The acid-sensitive mechanism is still unknown. We hypothesized that 5HT(3)-blockade can inhibit the acid-induced duodenogastric sensorimotor reflex in healthy volunteers. Fourteen healthy volunteers were included in a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled cross-over trial. An infusion tube with attached pH-electrode was positioned in the duodenum and a barostat balloon was located in the gastric fundus. Proximal gastric volume and sensitivity to distension were assessed before and during duodenal acid infusion and after pretreatment with intravenous (i.v.) ondansetron (a 5HT(3)-receptor antagonist, 8 mg) or saline. An overall perception score (0-6) and an assessment of nine dyspeptic symptoms by visual analogue scales (VAS) were obtained. Results are given as mean ± SEM. Ondansetron had no effect on duodenal pH and on the acid-induced increase of proximal gastric volume (increase of 80 ± 20 vs 83 ± 15 mL after ondansetron and placebo; effect of acid acid infusion and gastric distension. 5HT(3)-receptors are involved in acid-induced duodenogastric sensitization, but not in the duodenogastric inhibitory motor reflex. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  16. Sensory flow shaped by active sensing: sensorimotor strategies in electric fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofmann, Volker; Sanguinetti-Scheck, Juan I; Künzel, Silke; Geurten, Bart; Gómez-Sena, Leonel; Engelmann, Jacob

    2013-07-01

    Goal-directed behavior in most cases is composed of a sequential order of elementary motor patterns shaped by sensorimotor contingencies. The sensory information acquired thus is structured in both space and time. Here we review the role of motion during the generation of sensory flow focusing on how animals actively shape information by behavioral strategies. We use the well-studied examples of vision in insects and echolocation in bats to describe commonalities of sensory-related behavioral strategies across sensory systems, and evaluate what is currently known about comparable active sensing strategies in electroreception of electric fish. In this sensory system the sensors are dispersed across the animal's body and the carrier source emitting energy used for sensing, the electric organ, is moved while the animal moves. Thus ego-motions strongly influence sensory dynamics. We present, for the first time, data of electric flow during natural probing behavior in Gnathonemus petersii (Mormyridae), which provide evidence for this influence. These data reveal a complex interdependency between the physical input to the receptors and the animal's movements, posture and objects in its environment. Although research on spatiotemporal dynamics in electrolocation is still in its infancy, the emerging field of dynamical sensory systems analysis in electric fish is a promising approach to the study of the link between movement and acquisition of sensory information.

  17. Non-verbal sensorimotor timing deficits in children and adolescents who stutter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone eFalk

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available There is growing evidence that motor and speech disorders co-occur during development. In the present study, we investigated whether stuttering, a developmental speech disorder, is associated with a motor timing deficit in childhood and adolescence. By testing sensorimotor synchronization abilities, we aimed to assess whether predictive timing is dysfunctional in young participants who stutter (8-16 years. Twenty German children and adolescents who stutter and 43 non-stuttering participants matched for age and musical training were tested on their ability to synchronize their finger taps with periodic tone sequences and with a musical beat. Forty percent of children and 90 percent of adolescents who stutter displayed poor synchronization with both metronome and musical stimuli, falling below 2.5 % of the estimated population based on the performance of the group without the disorder. Synchronization deficits were characterized by either lower synchronization accuracy or lower consistency or both. Lower accuracy resulted in an over-anticipation of the pacing event in participants who stutter. Moreover, individual profiles revealed that lower consistency was typical of participants that were severely stuttering. These findings support the idea that malfunctioning predictive timing during auditory-motor coupling plays a role in stuttering in children and adolescents.

  18. Counting on the mental number line to make a move: sensorimotor ('pen') control and numerical processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheridan, Rebecca; van Rooijen, Maaike; Giles, Oscar; Mushtaq, Faisal; Steenbergen, Bert; Mon-Williams, Mark; Waterman, Amanda

    2017-10-01

    Mathematics is often conducted with a writing implement. But is there a relationship between numerical processing and sensorimotor 'pen' control? We asked participants to move a stylus so it crossed an unmarked line at a location specified by a symbolic number (1-9), where number colour indicated whether the line ran left-right ('normal') or vice versa ('reversed'). The task could be simplified through the use of a 'mental number line' (MNL). Many modern societies use number lines in mathematical education and the brain's representation of number appears to follow a culturally determined spatial organisation (so better task performance is associated with this culturally normal orientation-the MNL effect). Participants (counter-balanced) completed two consistent blocks of trials, 'normal' and 'reversed', followed by a mixed block where line direction varied randomly. Experiment 1 established that the MNL effect was robust, and showed that the cognitive load associated with reversing the MNL not only affected response selection but also the actual movement execution (indexed by duration) within the mixed trials. Experiment 2 showed that an individual's motor abilities predicted performance in the difficult (mixed) condition but not the easier blocks. These results suggest that numerical processing is not isolated from motor capabilities-a finding with applied consequences.

  19. Practice and Age-Related Loss of Adaptability in Sensorimotor Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sosnoff, Jacob J.; Voudrie, Stefani J.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of the present investigation was to examine whether the ability to adapt to task constraints is influenced by short-term practice in older adults. Young (18–29 years old) and old (65–75 years old) adults produced force output to a constant force target and a 1-Hz sinusoidal force target by way of the index finger flexion. Participants completed each task 5 times per session for 5 concurrent sessions. The amount and structure of force variability was calculated using linear and nonlinear analyses. As expected, there was a decrease in the magnitude of variability (coefficient of variation) in both tasks and task-related change in the structure of force variability (approximate entropy) with training across groups. The authors found older adults to have a greater amount of variability than their younger counterparts in both tasks. Older adults also demonstrated an increase in the structure of force output in the constant task but a decrease in structure in the sinusoidal task. Age differences in the adaptability to task constraints persisted throughout practice. The authors propose that older adults' ability to adapt sensorimotor output to task demands is not a result of lack of familiarity with the task but that it is, instead, characteristic of the aging process. PMID:19201684

  20. Music and speech distractors disrupt sensorimotor synchronization: effects of musical training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Białuńska, Anita; Dalla Bella, Simone

    2017-12-01

    Humans display a natural tendency to move to the beat of music, more than to the rhythm of any other auditory stimulus. We typically move with music, but rarely with speech. This proclivity is apparent early during development and can be further developed over the years via joint dancing, singing, or instrument playing. Synchronization of movement to the beat can thus improve with age, but also with musical experience. In a previous study, we found that music perturbed synchronization with a metronome more than speech fragments; music superiority disappeared when distractors shared isochrony and the same meter (Dalla Bella et al., PLoS One 8(8):e71945, 2013). Here, we examined if the interfering effect of music and speech distractors in a synchronization task is influenced by musical training. Musicians and non-musicians synchronized by producing finger force pulses to the sounds of a metronome while music and speech distractors were presented at one of various phase relationships with respect to the target. Distractors were familiar musical excerpts and fragments of children poetry comparable in terms of beat/stress isochrony. Music perturbed synchronization with the metronome more than speech did in both groups. However, the difference in synchronization error between music and speech distractors was smaller for musicians than for non-musicians, especially when the peak force of movement is reached. These findings point to a link between musical training and timing of sensorimotor synchronization when reacting to music and speech distractors.

  1. Eye movement training is most effective when it involves a task-relevant sensorimotor decision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fooken, Jolande; Lalonde, Kathryn M; Mann, Gurkiran K; Spering, Miriam

    2018-04-01

    Eye and hand movements are closely linked when performing everyday actions. We conducted a perceptual-motor training study to investigate mutually beneficial effects of eye and hand movements, asking whether training in one modality benefits performance in the other. Observers had to predict the future trajectory of a briefly presented moving object, and intercept it at its assumed location as accurately as possible with their finger. Eye and hand movements were recorded simultaneously. Different training protocols either included eye movements or a combination of eye and hand movements with or without external performance feedback. Eye movement training did not transfer across modalities: Irrespective of feedback, finger interception accuracy and precision improved after training that involved the hand, but not after isolated eye movement training. Conversely, eye movements benefited from hand movement training or when external performance feedback was given, thus improving only when an active interceptive task component was involved. These findings indicate only limited transfer across modalities. However, they reveal the importance of creating a training task with an active sensorimotor decision to improve the accuracy and precision of eye and hand movements.

  2. EEG-Based Brain–Computer Interfaces for Communication and Rehabilitation of People with Motor Impairment: A Novel Approach of the 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazarou, Ioulietta; Nikolopoulos, Spiros; Petrantonakis, Panagiotis C.; Kompatsiaris, Ioannis; Tsolaki, Magda

    2018-01-01

    People with severe neurological impairments face many challenges in sensorimotor functions and communication with the environment; therefore they have increased demand for advanced, adaptive and personalized rehabilitation. During the last several decades, numerous studies have developed brain–computer interfaces (BCIs) with the goals ranging from providing means of communication to functional rehabilitation. Here we review the research on non-invasive, electroencephalography (EEG)-based BCI systems for communication and rehabilitation. We focus on the approaches intended to help severely paralyzed and locked-in patients regain communication using three different BCI modalities: slow cortical potentials, sensorimotor rhythms and P300 potentials, as operational mechanisms. We also review BCI systems for restoration of motor function in patients with spinal cord injury and chronic stroke. We discuss the advantages and limitations of these approaches and the challenges that need to be addressed in the future. PMID:29472849

  3. Congenital hearing impairment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robson, Caroline D. [Children' s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Division of Neuroradiology, Department of Radiology, Boston, MA (United States)

    2006-04-15

    Establishing the etiology of congenital hearing impairment can significantly improve treatment for certain causes of hearing loss and facilitates genetic counseling. High-resolution CT and MRI have contributed to the evaluation and management of hearing impairment. In addition, with the identification of innumerable genetic loci and genetic defects involved in hearing loss, genetic testing has emerged as an invaluable tool in the assessment of hearing impairment. Some of the common forms of congenital hearing loss are reviewed and their imaging features illustrated. (orig.)

  4. Congenital hearing impairment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robson, Caroline D.

    2006-01-01

    Establishing the etiology of congenital hearing impairment can significantly improve treatment for certain causes of hearing loss and facilitates genetic counseling. High-resolution CT and MRI have contributed to the evaluation and management of hearing impairment. In addition, with the identification of innumerable genetic loci and genetic defects involved in hearing loss, genetic testing has emerged as an invaluable tool in the assessment of hearing impairment. Some of the common forms of congenital hearing loss are reviewed and their imaging features illustrated. (orig.)

  5. Sensorimotor Control in Individuals With Idiopathic Neck Pain and Healthy Individuals: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Zoete, Rutger M J; Osmotherly, Peter G; Rivett, Darren A; Farrell, Scott F; Snodgrass, Suzanne J

    2017-06-01

    (1) To identify reported tests used to assess sensorimotor control in individuals with idiopathic neck pain and (2) to investigate whether these tests can quantify differences between individuals with idiopathic neck pain and healthy individuals. Allied and Complementary Medicine Database, CINAHL, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Embase, MEDLINE, Physiotherapy Evidence Database, Scopus, and SPORTDiscus. Studies reporting sensorimotor outcomes in individuals with idiopathic neck pain or healthy individuals were identified. There were 1,677 records screened independently by 2 researchers for eligibility: 43 studies were included in the review, with 30 of these studies included in the meta-analysis. Methodologic quality was determined using the Quality Assessment Tool for Observational Cohort and Cross-Sectional Studies. Data were extracted using a standardized extraction table. Sensorimotor control was most commonly assessed by joint position error and postural sway. Pooled means for joint position error after cervical rotation in individuals with neck pain (range, 2.2°-9.8°) differed significantly (P=.04) compared with healthy individuals (range, 1.66°-5.1°). Postural sway with eyes open ranged from 4.85 to 10.5cm 2 (neck pain) and 3.5 to 6.6cm 2 (healthy) (P=.16), and postural sway with eyes closed ranged from 2.51 to 16.6cm 2 (neck pain) and 2.74 to 10.9cm 2 (healthy) (P=.30). Individual studies, but not meta-analysis, demonstrated differences between neck pain and healthy groups for postural sway. Other test conditions and other tests were not sufficiently investigated to enable pooling of data. The findings from this review suggest sensorimotor control testing may be clinically useful in individuals with idiopathic neck pain. However, results should be interpreted with caution because clinical differences were small; therefore, further cross-sectional research with larger samples is needed to determine the magnitude of the relation between

  6. Impairments to Vision

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... an external Non-Government web site. Impairments to Vision Normal Vision Diabetic Retinopathy Age-related Macular Degeneration In this ... pictures, fixate on the nose to simulate the vision loss. In diabetic retinopathy, the blood vessels in ...

  7. Stormwater Impaired Watersheds

    Data.gov (United States)

    Vermont Center for Geographic Information — Stormwater impaired watersheds occuring on both the Priority Waters (Part D - Completed TMDL) and 303(d) list of waters (Part A - need TMDL) The Vermont State...

  8. Assessing sustainable remediation frameworks using sustainability principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridsdale, D Reanne; Noble, Bram F

    2016-12-15

    The remediation industry has grown exponentially in recent decades. International organizations of practitioners and remediation experts have developed several frameworks for integrating sustainability into remediation projects; however, there has been limited attention to how sustainability is approached and operationalized in sustainable remediation frameworks and practices - or whether sustainability plays any meaningful role at all in sustainable remediation. This paper examines how sustainability is represented in remediation frameworks and the guidance provided for practical application. Seven broad sustainability principles and review criteria are proposed and applied to a sample of six international remediation frameworks. Not all review criteria were equally satisfied and none of the frameworks fully met all criteria; however, the best performing frameworks were those identified as sustainability remediation frameworks. Intra-generational equity was addressed by all frameworks. Integrating social, economic and biophysical components beyond triple-bottom-line indicators was explicitly addressed only by the sustainable remediation frameworks. No frameworks provided principle- or rule-based guidance for dealing with trade-offs in sustainability decisions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Technology and sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kroeze, C.; Boersema, J.J.; Tellegen, E.; Cremers, A.

    2011-01-01

    In ten essays, this book addresses a broad range of issues related to the interplay of sustainability and technology. How do population growth and technology relate to sustainable development? Can globalization be reconciled with sustainable development? Is sustainability a subjective or an

  10. Sustainable consumption and marketing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dam, van Y.K.

    2016-01-01

    Sustainable development in global food markets is hindered by the discrepancy between positive consumer attitudes towards sustainable development or sustainability and the lack of corresponding sustainable consumption by a majority of consumers. Apparently for many (light user) consumers the

  11. Improving Sensorimotor Adaptation Following Long Duration Space Flight by Enhancing Vestibular Information Transfer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulavara, A. P.; Kofman, I. S.; De Dios, Y. E; Galvan, R.; Goel, R.; Miller, C.; Peters, B.; Cohen, H. S.; Jeevarajan, J.; Reschke, M.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Crewmember adapted to the microgravity state may need to egress the vehicle within a few minutes for safety and operational reasons after gravitational transitions. The transition from one sensorimotor state to another consists of two main mechanisms: strategic and plastic-adaptive and have been demonstrated in astronauts returning after long duration space flight. Strategic modifications represent "early adaptation" - immediate and transitory changes in control that are employed to deal with short-term changes in the environment. If these modifications are prolonged then plastic-adaptive changes are evoked that modify central nervous system function, automating new behavioral responses. More importantly, this longer term adaptive recovery mechanism was significantly associated with their strategic ability to recover on the first day after return to Earth G. We are developing a method based on stochastic resonance to enhance information transfer by improving the brain's ability to detect vestibular signals (Vestibular Stochastic Resonance, VSR) especially when combined with balance training exercises such as sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training for rapid improvement in functional skill, for standing and mobility. This countermeasure to improve detection of vestibular signals is a stimulus delivery system that is wearable/portable providing low imperceptible levels of white noise based binaural bipolar electrical stimulation of the vestibular system (stochastic vestibular stimulation). To determine efficacy of vestibular stimulation on physiological and perceptual responses during otolith-canal conflicts and dynamic perturbations we have conducted a series of studies: We have shown that imperceptible binaural bipolar electrical stimulation of the vestibular system across the mastoids enhances balance performance in the mediolateral (ML) plane while standing on an unstable surface. We have followed up on the previous study showing VSR stimulation improved balance

  12. Sensorimotor Characteristics of Neuro-Ophthalmology and Oculo-Plastics Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christoff, Alex

    2015-01-01

    Certified orthoptists are routinely required, as a standard component of outpatient care, to examine and identify the cause of double vision described by neuro-ophthalmology and oculo-plastics patients. Peer-reviewed articles in the strabismus literature describing the significance of this role of the orthoptists, especially in more complex cases of strabismus, do exist, but are outdated. The importance of creating a differential diagnosis in the understanding of the disease process is a well-recognized component of medical education and modern medicine. This work was a retrospective chart review and descriptive study of the most common clinical characteristics of adult neuro-ophthalmology and oculo-plastics patients seen over a 9-year period by an orthoptist in a large, urban academic institution in the United States. History and clinical data obtained included demographic information; whether the subjects were neuro-ophthalmology or oculo-plastic patients or both; chief complaint; past medical history and associated medical risk factors; past ocular history of strabismus or amblyopia; whether reported diplopia was monocular or binocular; visual acuities; sensorimotor examination and fusion status information; presence or absence of ptosis; pupil size and reactivity; basic accommodative function; orthoptist and physician diagnoses; and suggested treatment of diplopia. Five hundred seventy-five subjects were identified based on inclusion criteria. Racial demographics matched that of the state of Maryland, with the majority of the patients being Caucasian. The minority were of Hispanic origin. Ninety-one percent of the study cohort was referred by the department of neuro-ophthalmology at the institution. Hypertension was a statistically significant medical risk factor for acquired strabismus and diplopia in this adult cohort. Etiology for the strabismus and associated diplopia suggested by the orthoptist was in close agreement with the final diagnosis made by the

  13. Externality or sustainability economics?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergh, Jeroen C.J.M. van den

    2010-01-01

    In an effort to develop 'sustainability economics' Baumgaertner and Quaas (2010) neglect the central concept of environmental economics-'environmental externality'. This note proposes a possible connection between the concepts of environmental externality and sustainability. In addition, attention is asked for other aspects of 'sustainability economics', namely the distinction weak/strong sustainability, spatial sustainability and sustainable trade, distinctive sustainability policy, and the ideas of early 'sustainability economists'. I argue that both sustainability and externalities reflect a systems perspective and propose that effective sustainability solutions require that more attention is given to system feedbacks, notably other-regarding preferences and social interactions, and energy and environmental rebound. The case of climate change and policy is used to illustrate particular statements. As a conclusion, a list of 20 insights and suggestions for research is offered. (author)

  14. Sensorimotor Behaviour Reflects Lexical and Grammatical Aspect in Czech: An Eye Tracking Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Kořenář

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Thinking and speaking about events is a process tightly connected with time perception. We can express when an event has occurred with respect to other events, whether it was a durative or a one-time event, whether it was an ongoing or already finished event, etc. Every human language has its own way and extent to which this complex temporal structure of experienced events is expressed. Upon hearing a story we construct a mental representation of the communicated event (e.g. Givón 1992. Some studies show that this construction already evolves during online processing, thanks to instantly accessible language processing cues (Altman and Kamide 1999, Ferretti, McRae and Hatherell 2001, McRae, Ferretti and Amyote 1997. These cues are employed to capture the intricate temporal structure of the story, for instance. They arise from the interplay of the three basic linguistic components (structure, meaning and function and as such are consistent with a constructional view of language (e.g. Fillmore 1988. Even subtle changes of any of the linguistic cues may lead to a different mental representation. Examples of the sources of grammatical markers and lexical categories from which the linguistic cues arise are grammatical and lexical aspect. In the linguistic field, a lot of attention has been paid to analyses of how those sources of temporal cues function within a language system. However, there is a lack of empirical data on how grammatical and lexical aspect interact, and what the effects of such an interaction are. The present study aims to investigate the link between the complex system of temporal cues and sensorimotor representation in Czech speakers, with specific focus on grammatical verb aspect and so-called event telicity, i.e. lexical aspect, all of which will be further described below.

  15. Effect of painful and non-painful sensorimotor manipulations on subjective body midline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason eBouffard

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Patients with chronic pain often show disturbances in their body perception. Understanding the exact role played by pain is however complex, as confounding factors can contribute to the observed deficits in these clinical populations. To address this question, acute experimental pain was used to test the effect of lateralized pain on body perception in healthy subjects. Subjects were asked to indicate the position of their body midline (subjective body midline, SBM by stopping a moving luminescent dot projected on a screen placed in front of them, in a completely dark environment. The effect of other nonpainful sensorimotor manipulations was also tested to assess the potential unspecific attentional effects of stimulating one side of the body. SBM judgment was made in seventeen volunteers under control and three experimental conditions: 1 painful (heat stimulation; 2 nonpainful vibrotactile stimulation; and 3 muscle contraction. The effects of the stimulated side and the type of trial (control vs. experimental condition, were tested separately for each condition with a 2 x 2 repeated measures ANOVA. The analyses revealed a significant interaction in both pain (p = 0.05 and vibration conditions (p = 0.04. Post-hoc tests showed opposite effects of pain and vibration. Pain applied on the right arm deviated the SBM toward the right (stimulated side (p = 0.03 while vibration applied on the left arm deviated the SBM toward the right (not stimulated side (p = 0.01. These opposite patterns suggest that the shift in SBM is likely to be specifically linked to the stimulation modality. It is concluded that acute experimental pain can induce an SBM shift toward the stimulated side, which might be functionally beneficial to protect the painful area of the body. Interestingly, it appears to be easier to bias SBM toward the right side, regardless of the modality and of the stimulated side.

  16. Humans can integrate feedback of discrete events in their sensorimotor control of a robotic hand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cipriani, Christian; Segil, Jacob L; Clemente, Francesco; ff Weir, Richard F; Edin, Benoni

    2014-11-01

    Providing functionally effective sensory feedback to users of prosthetics is a largely unsolved challenge. Traditional solutions require high band-widths for providing feedback for the control of manipulation and yet have been largely unsuccessful. In this study, we have explored a strategy that relies on temporally discrete sensory feedback that is technically simple to provide. According to the Discrete Event-driven Sensory feedback Control (DESC) policy, motor tasks in humans are organized in phases delimited by means of sensory encoded discrete mechanical events. To explore the applicability of DESC for control, we designed a paradigm in which healthy humans operated an artificial robot hand to lift and replace an instrumented object, a task that can readily be learned and mastered under visual control. Assuming that the central nervous system of humans naturally organizes motor tasks based on a strategy akin to DESC, we delivered short-lasting vibrotactile feedback related to events that are known to forcefully affect progression of the grasp-lift-and-hold task. After training, we determined whether the artificial feedback had been integrated with the sensorimotor control by introducing short delays and we indeed observed that the participants significantly delayed subsequent phases of the task. This study thus gives support to the DESC policy hypothesis. Moreover, it demonstrates that humans can integrate temporally discrete sensory feedback while controlling an artificial hand and invites further studies in which inexpensive, noninvasive technology could be used in clever ways to provide physiologically appropriate sensory feedback in upper limb prosthetics with much lower band-width requirements than with traditional solutions.

  17. Homeostasis of exercise hyperpnea and optimal sensorimotor integration: the internal model paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poon, Chi-Sang; Tin, Chung; Yu, Yunguo

    2007-10-15

    Homeostasis is a basic tenet of biomedicine and an open problem for many physiological control systems. Among them, none has been more extensively studied and intensely debated than the dilemma of exercise hyperpnea - a paradoxical homeostatic increase of respiratory ventilation that is geared to metabolic demands instead of the normal chemoreflex mechanism. Classical control theory has led to a plethora of "feedback/feedforward control" or "set point" hypotheses for homeostatic regulation, yet so far none of them has proved satisfactory in explaining exercise hyperpnea and its interactions with other respiratory inputs. Instead, the available evidence points to a far more sophisticated respiratory controller capable of integrating multiple afferent and efferent signals in adapting the ventilatory pattern toward optimality relative to conflicting homeostatic, energetic and other objectives. This optimality principle parsimoniously mimics exercise hyperpnea, chemoreflex and a host of characteristic respiratory responses to abnormal gas exchange or mechanical loading/unloading in health and in cardiopulmonary diseases - all without resorting to a feedforward "exercise stimulus". Rather, an emergent controller signal encoding the projected metabolic level is predicted by the principle as an exercise-induced 'mental percept' or 'internal model', presumably engendered by associative learning (operant conditioning or classical conditioning) which achieves optimality through continuous identification of, and adaptation to, the causal relationship between respiratory motor output and resultant chemical-mechanical afferent feedbacks. This internal model self-tuning adaptive control paradigm opens a new challenge and exciting opportunity for experimental and theoretical elucidations of the mechanisms of respiratory control - and of homeostatic regulation and sensorimotor integration in general.

  18. Correlation between subacute sensorimotor deficits and brain water content after surgical brain injury in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, Devin W; Wang, Yuechun; Sherchan, Prativa; Tang, Jiping; Zhang, John H

    2015-09-01

    Brain edema is a major contributor to poor outcome and reduced quality of life after surgical brain injury (SBI). Although SBI pathophysiology is well-known, the correlation between cerebral edema and neurological deficits has not been thoroughly examined in the rat model of SBI. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the correlation between brain edema and deficits in standard sensorimotor neurobehavior tests for rats subjected to SBI. Sixty male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to either sham surgery or surgical brain injury via partial frontal lobectomy. All animals were tested for neurological deficits 24 post-SBI and fourteen were also tested 72 h after surgery using seven common behavior tests: modified Garcia neuroscore (Neuroscore), beam walking, corner turn test, forelimb placement test, adhesive removal test, beam balance test, and foot fault test. After assessing the functional outcome, animals were euthanized for brain water content measurement. Surgical brain injury resulted in significantly elevated frontal lobe brain water content 24 and 72 h after surgery compared to that of sham animals. In all behavior tests, significance was observed between sham and SBI animals. However, a correlation between brain water content and functional outcome was observed for all tests except Neuroscore. The selection of behavior tests is critical to determine the effectiveness of therapeutics. Based on this study's results, we recommend using beam walking, the corner turn test, the beam balance test, and the foot fault test since correlations with brain water content were observed at both 24 and 72 h post-SBI. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Correlation between subacute sensorimotor deficits and brain water content after surgical brain injury in rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBride, Devin W.; Wang, Yuechun; Sherchan, Prativa; Tang, Jiping; Zhang, John H.

    2015-01-01

    Brain edema is a major contributor to poor outcome and reduced quality of life after surgical brain injury (SBI). Although SBI pathophysiology is well-known, the correlation between cerebral edema and neurological deficits has not been thoroughly examined in the rat model of SBI. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the correlation between brain edema and deficits in standard sensorimotor neurobehavior tests for rats subjected to SBI. Sixty male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to either sham surgery or surgical brain injury via partial frontal lobectomy. All animals were tested for neurological deficits 24 post-SBI and fourteen were also tested 72 hours after surgery using seven common behavior tests: modified Garcia neuroscore (Neuroscore), beam walking, corner turn test, forelimb placement test, adhesive removal test, beam balance test, and foot fault test. After assessing the functional outcome, animals were euthanized for brain water content measurement. Surgical brain injury resulted in a significantly elevated frontal lobe brain water content 24 and 72 hours after surgery compared to that of sham animals. In all behavior tests, significance was observed between sham and SBI animals. However, a correlation between brain water content and functional outcome was observed for all tests except Neuroscore. The selection of behavior tests is critical to determine the effectiveness of therapeutics. Based on this study’s results, we recommend using beam walking, the corner turn test, the beam balance test, and the foot fault test since correlations with brain water content were observed at both 24 and 72 hours post-SBI. PMID:25975171

  20. Sensorimotor rhythm-based brain-computer interface training: the impact on motor cortical responsiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pichiorri, F.; De Vico Fallani, F.; Cincotti, F.; Babiloni, F.; Molinari, M.; Kleih, S. C.; Neuper, C.; Kübler, A.; Mattia, D.

    2011-04-01

    The main purpose of electroencephalography (EEG)-based brain-computer interface (BCI) technology is to provide an alternative channel to support communication and control when motor pathways are interrupted. Despite the considerable amount of research focused on the improvement of EEG signal detection and translation into output commands, little is known about how learning to operate a BCI device may affect brain plasticity. This study investigated if and how sensorimotor rhythm-based BCI training would induce persistent functional changes in motor cortex, as assessed with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and high-density EEG. Motor imagery (MI)-based BCI training in naïve participants led to a significant increase in motor cortical excitability, as revealed by post-training TMS mapping of the hand muscle's cortical representation; peak amplitude and volume of the motor evoked potentials recorded from the opponens pollicis muscle were significantly higher only in those subjects who develop a MI strategy based on imagination of hand grasping to successfully control a computer cursor. Furthermore, analysis of the functional brain networks constructed using a connectivity matrix between scalp electrodes revealed a significant decrease in the global efficiency index for the higher-beta frequency range (22-29 Hz), indicating that the brain network changes its topology with practice of hand grasping MI. Our findings build the neurophysiological basis for the use of non-invasive BCI technology for monitoring and guidance of motor imagery-dependent brain plasticity and thus may render BCI a viable tool for post-stroke rehabilitation.

  1. Expressions of multiple neuronal dynamics during sensorimotor learning in the motor cortex of behaving monkeys.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yael Mandelblat-Cerf

    Full Text Available Previous studies support the notion that sensorimotor learning involves multiple processes. We investigated the neuronal basis of these processes by recording single-unit activity in motor cortex of non-human primates (Macaca fascicularis, during adaptation to force-field perturbations. Perturbed trials (reaching to one direction were practiced along with unperturbed trials (to other directions. The number of perturbed trials relative to the unperturbed ones was either low or high, in two separate practice schedules. Unsurprisingly, practice under high-rate resulted in faster learning with more pronounced generalization, as compared to the low-rate practice. However, generalization and retention of behavioral and neuronal effects following practice in high-rate were less stable; namely, the faster learning was forgotten faster. We examined two subgroups of cells and showed that, during learning, the changes in firing-rate in one subgroup depended on the number of practiced trials, but not on time. In contrast, changes in the second subgroup depended on time and practice; the changes in firing-rate, following the same number of perturbed trials, were larger under high-rate than low-rate learning. After learning, the neuronal changes gradually decayed. In the first subgroup, the decay pace did not depend on the practice rate, whereas in the second subgroup, the decay pace was greater following high-rate practice. This group shows neuronal representation that mirrors the behavioral performance, evolving faster but also decaying faster at learning under high-rate, as compared to low-rate. The results suggest that the stability of a new learned skill and its neuronal representation are affected by the acquisition schedule.

  2. Control beliefs can predict the ability to up-regulate sensorimotor rhythm during neurofeedback training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias eWitte

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Technological progress in computer science and neuroimaging has resulted in many approaches that aim to detect brain states and translate them to an external output. Studies from the field of brain-computer interfaces and neurofeedback have validated the coupling between brain signals and computer devices; however a cognitive model of the processes involved remains elusive. Psychological parameters usually play a moderate role in predicting the performance of brain-computer interface (BCI and neurofeedback (NF users. The concept of a locus of control, i.e. whether one’s own action is determined by internal or external causes, may help to unravel inter-individual performance capacities. Here, we present data from twenty healthy participants who performed a feedback task based on EEG recordings of the sensorimotor rhythm (SMR. One group of ten participants underwent ten training sessions where the amplitude of the SMR was coupled to a vertical feedback bar. The other group of ten participants participated in the same task but relied on sham feedback. Our analysis revealed that a locus of control score focusing on control beliefs with regard to technology negatively correlated with the power of SMR. These preliminary results suggest that participants whose confidence in control over technical devices is high might consume additional cognitive resources. This higher effort in turn may interfere with brain states of relaxation as reflected in the SMR. As a consequence, one way to improve control over brain signals in neurofeedback paradigms may be to explicitly instruct users not to force mastery but instead to aim at a state of effortless relaxation.

  3. Human-Inspired Eigenmovement Concept Provides Coupling-Free Sensorimotor Control in Humanoid Robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Mergner

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Control of a multi-body system in both robots and humans may face the problem of destabilizing dynamic coupling effects arising between linked body segments. The state of the art solutions in robotics are full state feedback controllers. For human hip-ankle coordination, a more parsimonious and theoretically stable alternative to the robotics solution has been suggested in terms of the Eigenmovement (EM control. Eigenmovements are kinematic synergies designed to describe the multi DoF system, and its control, with a set of independent, and hence coupling-free, scalar equations. This paper investigates whether the EM alternative shows “real-world robustness” against noisy and inaccurate sensors, mechanical non-linearities such as dead zones, and human-like feedback time delays when controlling hip-ankle movements of a balancing humanoid robot. The EM concept and the EM controller are introduced, the robot's dynamics are identified using a biomechanical approach, and robot tests are performed in a human posture control laboratory. The tests show that the EM controller provides stable control of the robot with proactive (“voluntary” movements and reactive balancing of stance during support surface tilts and translations. Although a preliminary robot-human comparison reveals similarities and differences, we conclude (i the Eigenmovement concept is a valid candidate when different concepts of human sensorimotor control are considered, and (ii that human-inspired robot experiments may help to decide in future the choice among the candidates and to improve the design of humanoid robots and robotic rehabilitation devices.

  4. Administration of raloxifene reduces sensorimotor and working memory deficits following traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokiko, Olga N; Murashov, Alexander K; Hoane, Michael R

    2006-06-30

    Hormonal differences between males and females have surfaced as a crucial component in the search for effective treatments after experimental models of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Recent findings have shown that selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) may have therapeutic benefit. The present study examined the effects of raloxifene, a SERM, on functional recovery after bilateral cortical contusion injury (bCCI) or sham procedure. Male rats received injections of raloxifene (3.0mg/kg, i.p.) or vehicle (1.0 ml/kg, i.p.) 15 min, 24, 48, 72, and 96 h after bCCI or sham procedure. Rats were tested on both sensorimotor (bilateral tactile removal and locomotor placing tests) and cognitive tests (reference and working memory in the Morris water maze). Raloxifene-treated animals showed a significant reduction in the initial magnitude of the deficit and facilitated the rate of recovery for the bilateral tactile removal test, compared to vehicle-treated animals. The raloxifene-treated animals also showed a significant improvement in the acquisition of working memory compared to vehicle-treated animals. However, raloxifene did not significantly improve the acquisition of reference memory or locomotor placing ability. Raloxifene treatment also did not result in a significant reduction in the size of the lesion cavity. Thus, the task-dependent improvements seen following raloxifene treatment do not appear to be the result of cortical neuroprotection. However, these results suggest that raloxifene improves functional outcome following bCCI and may present an interesting avenue for future research.

  5. Virtual Sensorimotor Balance Training for Children With Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: Feasibility Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Sarah Westcott; Jirikowic, Tracy; Price, Robert; Ciol, Marcia A; Hsu, Lin-Ya; Dellon, Brian; Kartin, Deborah

    2015-11-01

    Diminished sensory adaptation has been assoc