The role of the striatum in visuomotor integration during handwriting: an fMRI study

Marek Bartoň, Monika Fňašková, Irena Rektorová, Michal Mikl, Radek Mareček, Steven Z. Rapcsak, Ivan Rektor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study investigates the role of the dorsal/sensorimotor striatum in visuomotor integration (i.e., the transformation of internal visual information about letter shapes into motor output) during handwriting. Twenty healthy participants underwent fMRI scanning with tasks consisting of self-paced handwriting of alphabetically ordered single letters and simple dots, with both tasks performed without visual feedback. Functional connectivity (FC) from these two tasks was compared to demonstrate the difference between coordinated activity arising during handwriting and the activity during a simpler motor condition. Our study focused upon the writing-specific cortico-striatal network of preselected regions of interest consisting of the visual word form area (VWFA), anterior intraparietal sulcus/superior parietal lobule, striatum, premotor cortex/Exner’s area, and primary and supplementary motor regions. We observed systematically increased task-induced cortico-striatal and cortico-cortical FC. This increased synchronization of neural activity between the VWFA, i.e., the visual cortical area containing information about letter shapes, and the frontoparietal motor regions is mediated by the striatum. These findings suggest the involvement of the striatum in integrating stored letter-shape information with motor planning and execution during handwriting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)331-337
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neural Transmission
Volume127
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020

Keywords

  • Basal ganglia
  • Functional connectivity
  • Handwriting
  • Striatum
  • Visuomotor integration
  • fMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry

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