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Conventional functional imaging paradigms use periods of repetitive task performance to generate sustained functional signal changes. We have developed a technique of imaging the small, transient signal changes that occur after single cognitive events. The technique uses echo-planar imaging at 3 T to generate functional images of the whole brain with a temporal resolution of 3 seconds. It uses a signal averaging technique to create time sweeps of functional activity. After a single cognitive event, widely distributed patterns of brain activation can be detected and their time course measured. This technique enables the individual cognitive tasks that constitute a paradigm to be analyzed separately and compared. We describe the application of this new technique to separate the cognitive elements in a simple "go/no-go" motor paradigm. Comparison of activation patterns during "go" and "no-go" responses reveals hierarchical subdivision of the medial premotor cortex into an anterior region (presupplementary motor area) involved in movement decision making and a posterior region (supplementary motor area proper) directly involved in motor execution.

Original publication

DOI

10.1002/ana.410420414

Type

Journal article

Journal

Ann Neurol

Publication Date

10/1997

Volume

42

Pages

632 - 637

Keywords

Adult, Evoked Potentials, Motor, Female, Frontal Lobe, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Motor Cortex, Psychomotor Performance