The overall goal of the research proposed in this application is to determine the brain activation patterns during performance of specific perceptual motor cognitive tasks, as revealed by high field strength (4 Tesla) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Healthy women and men will be studied. The tasks are designed to test hypothesis of how some higher order motor functions are represented in the brain. These functions include predictive motor control, such as intercepting a moving target, and tasks reflecting praxis, namely complex purposeful motor actions, such as copying figures from visual templates, finding exit routes in mazes, and constructing objects from component parts. The potential achievement of these objectives is within reach, due to the adequate resolution afforded by the fMRI even for individual subjects. The hypotheses will be tested (a) that each one of the tasks above involves the cooperative interaction of specific brain areas, (b) that there is an overlap in the pattern of this activation, and (c) that this overlap corresponds to the common functional core shared by these tasks. The data acquired will be analyzed using both traditional as well as modern multivariate statistical techniques, such as hierarchical tree analysis. The results to be obtained are expected to provide novel insights into how the brain deals with dynamic visuomotor processes that are commonly disturbed in patients suffering from constructional apraxia. Finally, the general hypothesis will be tested that two genders do not differ in the functional brain activation patterns underlying the tasks above; if significant differences are found, these will be identified and will lead to the generation of new hypotheses about the brain processing of visuo spatial and visuo constructive information by women and men.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Research Project (R01)
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Cognitive Functional Neuroscience Review Committee (CFN)
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Edwards, Emmeline
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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Schools of Medicine
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Lewis, Scott M; Christova, Peka; Jerde, Trenton A et al. (2012) A compact and realistic cerebral cortical layout derived from prewhitened resting-state fMRI time series: Cherniak's adjacency rule, size law, and metamodule grouping upheld. Front Neuroanat 6:36
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Christova, Peka S; Lewis, Scott M; Tagaris, Georgios A et al. (2008) A voxel-by-voxel parametric fMRI study of motor mental rotation: hemispheric specialization and gender differences in neural processing efficiency. Exp Brain Res 189:79-90
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Lewis, Scott M; Jerde, Trenton A; Tzagarakis, Charidimos et al. (2005) Logarithmic transformation for high-field BOLD fMRI data. Exp Brain Res 165:447-53
Gourtzelidis, Pavlos; Tzagarakis, Charidimos; Lewis, Scott M et al. (2005) Mental maze solving: directional fMRI tuning and population coding in the superior parietal lobule. Exp Brain Res 165:273-82
Lewis, Scott M; Jerde, Trenton A; Tzagarakis, Charidimos et al. (2003) Cerebellar activation during copying geometrical shapes. J Neurophysiol 90:3874-87
Georgopoulos, Apostolos P (2002) Cognitive motor control: spatial and temporal aspects. Curr Opin Neurobiol 12:678-83
Georgopoulos, A P; Whang, K; Georgopoulos, M A et al. (2001) Functional magnetic resonance imaging of visual object construction and shape discrimination : relations among task, hemispheric lateralization, and gender. J Cogn Neurosci 13:72-89

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