Variability in stroke motor outcome is explained by structural and functional integrity of the motor system

Sci Rep. 2018 Jun 21;8(1):9480. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-27541-8.


Biomarkers that represent the structural and functional integrity of the motor system enable us to better assess motor outcome post-stroke. The degree of overlap between the stroke lesion and corticospinal tract (CST Injury) is a measure of the structural integrity of the motor system, whereas the left-to-right motor cortex resting state connectivity (LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity) is a measure of its functional integrity. CST Injury and LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity each individually correlate with motor outcome post-stroke, but less is understood about the relationship between these biomarkers. Thus, this study investigates the relationship between CST Injury and LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity, individually and together, with motor outcome. Twenty-seven participants with upper limb motor deficits post-stroke completed motor assessments and underwent MRI at one time point. CST Injury and LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity were derived from T1-weighted and resting state functional MRI scans, respectively. We performed hierarchical multiple regression analyses to determine the contribution of each biomarker in explaining motor outcome. The interaction between CST Injury and LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity does not significantly contribute to the variability in motor outcome. However, inclusion of both CST Injury and LM1-RM1 rs-connectivity explains more variability in motor outcome, than either alone. We suggest both biomarkers provide distinct information about an individual's motor outcome.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Connectome
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Cortex / diagnostic imaging
  • Motor Cortex / physiopathology*
  • Motor Skills*
  • Pyramidal Tracts / diagnostic imaging
  • Pyramidal Tracts / physiopathology*
  • Stroke / diagnostic imaging
  • Stroke / physiopathology*
  • Upper Extremity / innervation
  • Upper Extremity / physiopathology