Role of the somatosensory cortex in motor memory consolidation

J Neurophysiol. 2020 Sep 1;124(3):648-651. doi: 10.1152/jn.00770.2019. Epub 2020 Jul 29.


Motor memories become resistant to interference by the process of consolidation, which leads to long-term retention. Studies have shown involvement of the somatosensory cortex in motor learning-related plasticity, but not directly in motor memory consolidation. This Neuro Forum article reviews evidence from a continuous theta-burst transcranial magnetic stimulation (cTBS) study by Kumar and colleagues (Kumar N, Manning TF, Ostry DJ. PLoS Biol 17: e3000469, 2019) that demonstrates the role of somatosensory, rather than motor, cortex in human motor memory consolidation during implicit motor learning.

Keywords: memory consolidation; noninvasive brain stimulation; retention; somatosensory cortex.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Memory Consolidation / physiology*
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Retention, Psychology / physiology*
  • Somatosensory Cortex / physiology*