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Changes in corticomotor excitability and inhibition after exercise are influenced by hand dominance and motor demand

Teo, W.P., Rodrigues, J.P., Mastaglia, F.L. and Thickbroom, G.W. (2012) Changes in corticomotor excitability and inhibition after exercise are influenced by hand dominance and motor demand. Neuroscience, 210 . pp. 110-117.

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Previous studies on handedness have often reported functional asymmetries in corticomotor excitability (CME) associated with voluntary movement. Recently, we have shown that the degree of post-exercise corticomotor depression (PED) and increase in short-interval cortical inhibition (SICI) after a repetitive finger movement task was less when the task was performed at a maximal voluntary rate (MVR) than when it was performed at a submaximal sustainable rate (SR). In the current study, we have compared the time course of PED and SICI in the dominant (DOM) and nondominant (NDOM) hands after an MVR and SR finger movement task to determine the influence of hand dominance and task demand. We tracked motor-evoked potential (MEP) amplitude from the first dorsal interosseous muscle of the DOM and NDOM hand for 20 min after a 10-s index finger flexion-extension task at MVR and SR. For all hand-task combinations, we report a period of PED and increased SICI lasting for up to 8 min. We find that the least demanding task, one that involved index finger movement of the DOM hand at SR, was associated with the greatest change in PED and SICI from baseline (63.6±5.7% and 79±2%, P<0.001, PED and SICI, respectively), whereas the most demanding task (MVR of the NDOM hand) was associated with the least change from baseline (PED: 88.1±3.6%, SICI: 103±2%; P<0.001). Our findings indicate that the changes in CME and inhibition associated with repetitive finger movement are influenced both by handedness and the degree of demand of the motor task and are inversely related to task demand, being smallest for an MVR task of the NDOM hand and greatest for an SR task of the DOM hand. The findings provide additional evidence for differences in neuronal processing between the dominant and nondominant hemispheres in motor control.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 2012 IBRO
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