Condition-Dependent Neural Dimensions Progressively Shift during Reach to Grasp

Cell Rep. 2018 Dec 11;25(11):3158-3168.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.11.057.


Neural population space analysis was performed to assess the dimensionality and dynamics of the neural population in the primary motor cortex (M1) during a reach-grasp-manipulation task in which both the reach location and the object being grasped were varied. We partitioned neural activity into three components: (1) general task-related activity independent of location and object, (2) location- and/or object-related activity, and (3) noise. Neural modulation related to location and/or object was only one-third the size of either general task modulation or noise. The neural dimensions of location and/or object-related activity overlapped with both the general task and noise dimensions. Rather than large amplitude modulation in a fixed set of dimensions, the active dimensions of location and/or object modulation shifted progressively over the time course of a trial.

Keywords: demixed PCA; dimensionality reduction; grasping; manipulation; neural population; neural variability; population dynamics; primary motor cortex; reaching; state space.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Hand Strength / physiology*
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Motor Activity
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Principal Component Analysis
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Time Factors