Central motor processing in Huntington's disease. A PET study

Brain. 1997 Sep:120 ( Pt 9):1553-67. doi: 10.1093/brain/120.9.1553.


Repeated PET cerebral blood flow measurements using H2(15)O were performed in 13 patients with confirmed Huntington's disease and nine age-matched controls. The activation paradigm consisted of an externally triggered finger opposition task (1.5 Hz) with the dominant hand, the control condition being the auditory input. In the patients with Huntington's disease, impaired activity of the striatum and its frontal motor projection areas (rostral supplementary motor area, anterior cingulate and premotor cortex) could be demonstrated along with enhanced activity mainly in parietal areas during movement. The results suggest that the pathology of Huntington's disease causes impairment of the output part of the basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical motor circuit and may induce a compensatory recruitment of additional accessory motor pathways involving the parietal cortex.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation
  • Female
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Huntington Disease / diagnostic imaging*
  • Huntington Disease / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Movement / physiology*
  • Reference Values
  • Rest
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed*


  • Glucose