Interhemispheric interaction between human dorsal premotor and contralateral primary motor cortex.J Physiol. 2004 Nov 15; 561(Pt 1):331-8.JP
We used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in a paired pulse protocol to investigate interhemispheric interactions between the right dorsal premotor (dPM) and left primary motor cortex (M1) using interstimulus intervals of 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16 and 20 ms in ten healthy subjects. A conditioning stimulus over right dPM at an intensity of either 90 or 110% resting motor threshold (RMT) suppressed motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) evoked in the first dorsal interosseous (FDI) muscle by stimulation of left M1. Maximum effects occurred for interstimulus intervals (ISIs) of 8-10 ms. There was no effect if the conditioning stimulus was applied 2.5 cm lateral, anterior or medial to dPM. The effect differed from previously described M1 interhemispheric inhibition in that the threshold for the latter was greater than 90% RMT, whereas stimulation of the dPM at the same intensity led to significant inhibition. In addition, voluntary contraction of the left FDI (i.e. contralateral to the conditioning TMS) enhanced interhemispheric inhibition from right M1 but had no effect on the inhibition from right dPM. Finally, conditioning to right dPM at 90% RMT reduced short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI; at ISI = 2 ms) in left M1 whilst there was no effect if the conditioning stimulus was applied to right M1. We conclude that conditioning TMS over dPM has effects that differ from the previous pattern of interhemispheric inhibition described between bilateral M1s. This may reflect the existence of commissural fibres between dPM and contralateral M1 that may play a role in bimanual coordination.