Effects of Combining 2 Weeks of Passive Sensory Stimulation with Active Hand Motor Training in Healthy AdultsReport as inadecuate

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The gold standard to acquire motor skills is through intensive training and practicing. Recent studies have demonstrated that behavioral gains can also be acquired by mere exposure to repetitive sensory stimulation to drive the plasticity processes. Single application of repetitive electric stimulation rES of the fingers has been shown to improve tactile perception in young adults as well as sensorimotor performance in healthy elderly individuals. The combination of repetitive motor training with a preceding rES has not been reported yet. In addition, the impact of such a training on somatosensory tactile and spatial sensitivity as well as on somatosensory cortical activation remains elusive. Therefore, we tested 15 right-handed participants who underwent repetitive electric stimulation of all finger tips of the left hand for 20 minutes prior to one hour of motor training of the left hand over the period of two weeks. Overall, participants substantially improved the motor performance of the left trained hand by 34%, but also showed a relevant transfer to the untrained right hand by 24%. Baseline ipsilateral activation fMRI-magnitude in BA 1 to sensory index finger stimulation predicted training outcome for somatosensory guided movements: those who showed higher ipsilateral activation were those who did profit less from training. Improvement of spatial tactile discrimination was positively associated with gains in pinch grip velocity. Overall, a combination of priming rES and repetitive motor training is capable to induce motor and somatosensory performance increase and representation changes in BA1 in healthy young subjects.

Author: Aija Marie Ladda, Joerg Peter Pfannmoeller, Tobias Kalisch, Sybille Roschka, Thomas Platz, Hubert R. Dinse, Martin Lotze

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/


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