Functional magnetic resonance tomography (fMRI) analysis of unimanual and bimanual sequential movements in righthanders showed the following effects. First, a rate-dependent activation of the somato-motor cortex was confirmed, with faster movement rates producing higher activation both in terms of signal intensity and number of activated voxels. Second, the right hemisphere showed more activation than the left hemisphere during unimanual tasks. Third, during bimanual movements, the left hemisphere showed greater activation than the right hemisphere. Finally, while the left hemisphere showed a marked change in activation patterns from unimanual to bimanual task, the right hemisphere activation patterns were not sensitive to task changes. The hemispheric asymmetries suggest substantial left hemisphere involvement in the coordination of bimanual tasks.
Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.