Motor imagery in normal subjects and Parkinson's disease patients: An H2 15O PET study

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Michael Samuel, Hammersmith Hospital
  • ,
  • Andres O. Ceballos-Baumann, Technische Universitat Munchen
  • ,
  • Henning Boecker, Department of Neurodegenerative Disease, UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square, London
  • ,
  • David J. Brooks

Motor imagery paradigms can be used to investigate motor preparation. We used positron emission tomography to compare regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) in patients with Parkinson's disease and normal controls under three conditions: rest, motor imagery and motor execution. In controls, imagery activated bilateral dorsolateral and mesial frontal cortex, inferior parietal cortex and precuneus. Motor execution additionally activated primary motor cortex (p < 0.001). Between-Group, for imagery there was relative reduction in dorsolateral and mesial frontal activation in the patient group (p < 0.01). For execution, there was impaired activation of right dorsolateral frontal cortex and basal ganglia (p < 0.01). Our results support the notion that under-functioning of mesial frontal and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex may underlie motor preparation in Parkinson's disease but also suggest that akinesia may occur in the absence of impaired mesial frontal cortex activation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)821-828
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 26 Mar 2001
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • Imagination, Parkinson's, PET

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