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Brain. 2000 Jun;123 ( Pt 6):1203-15.

Movement-related change of electrocorticographic activity in human supplementary motor area proper.

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Department of Brain Pathophysiology, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine, Japan.


We investigated movement-related change in the cortical EEG signal by simultaneous recording from the primary sensorimotor area (S1-M1) and the supplementary motor area proper (SMA proper) in four patients with intractable partial epilepsy. By the use of temporal spectral evolution (TSE) analysis, the change in background cortical activity in relation to self-paced finger/wrist extension was compared among the SMA proper, S1 and M1. All three areas showed a decrease in the amount of activity for the frequency range between 10 and 40 Hz before the onset of movement [event-related desynchronization (ERD)]. The SMA proper showed earlier onset of ERD for 18-22 Hz activity (-3.4 +/- 0.5 s, mean +/- standard deviation) than M1 (-1.7 +/- 0.7 s) and S1 (-1.4 +/- 0.5 s). The degree of ERD in S1 was greatest for 10-14 Hz and that in M1 for 18-22 Hz, whereas in the SMA proper ERD was observed throughout the frequency bands from 10 to 40 Hz. Neither the degree nor the onset time of ERD in the SMA proper was lateralized to either the ipsilateral or the contralateral side with respect to the movement. A transient increase in activity after movement [event-related synchronization (ERS)] was observed in all three areas. In the SMA proper, two out of four subjects showed ERS for frequency bands below 40 Hz with both ipsilateral and contralateral movements. By contrast, in S1 and M1, ERS was recorded for frequency bands between 20 and 90 Hz, and was predominantly associated with the contralateral movement. The present study suggests that the background cortical activity in the SMA proper has a specific temporal pattern with respect to self-paced movement, and that the SMA proper is involved in motor preparation earlier than S1-M1 in a bilaterally organized manner.

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