PMID: 12498746Dec 25, 2002Paper

Age-related differences in movement representation

S HutchinsonGottfried Schlaug


Repetitive movements have been used as motor activation tasks in the investigation of various neurological disorders. To determine the importance of an age-matched control group in such studies we investigated whether there are significant age-related changes in the pattern of cortical activation seen during simple repetitive movements. Sixteen right-handed healthy subjects were studied-8 young and 8 old. Functional magnetic resonance images were acquired while subjects performed a motor task or a nonmovement rest condition. Two continuous motor tasks, index finger abduction/adduction and wrist extension/flexion, were performed by each hand, paced using a metronome. The fMRI data were processed and analyzed with SPM '99. For the between-group comparisons, for each motor task, contralateral primary sensorimotor cortex and premotor cortex had significantly greater activation in the Young group and caudal supplementary motor area had significantly greater activation in the Old group. Ipsilateral sensorimotor cortex was more significantly activated in the Old group for index finger motor tasks of both hands. All noted differences in the Old group were more prominent for the index finger movement and most prominent when using the no...Continue Reading


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