Directed Interaction Between Monkey Premotor and Posterior Parietal Cortex During Motor-Goal Retrieval from Working Memory

Cereb Cortex. 2018 May 1;28(5):1866-1881. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhy035.


Goal-directed behavior requires cognitive control of action, putatively by means of frontal-lobe impact on posterior brain areas. We investigated frontoparietal directed interaction (DI) in monkeys during memory-guided rule-based reaches, to test if DI supports motor-goal selection or working memory (WM) processes. We computed DI between the parietal reach region (PRR) and dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) with a Granger-causality measure of intracortical local field potentials (LFP). LFP mostly in the beta (12-32 Hz) and low-frequency (f≤10Hz) ranges contributed to DI. During movement withholding, beta-band activity in PRR had a Granger-causal effect on PMd independent of WM content. Complementary, low-frequency PMd activity had a transient Granger-causing effect on PRR specifically during WM retrieval of spatial motor goals, while no DI was associated with preliminary motor-goal selection. Our results support the idea that premotor and posterior parietal cortices interact functionally to achieve cognitive control during goal-directed behavior, in particular, that frontal-to-parietal interaction occurs during retrieval of motor-goal information from spatial WM.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Brain Waves / physiology*
  • Cues
  • Goals*
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Male
  • Memory, Short-Term / physiology*
  • Mental Recall
  • Motor Cortex / physiology*
  • Movement
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Parietal Lobe / physiology*
  • Psychomotor Performance
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Spectrum Analysis
  • Time Factors