Corticokinematic coherence is stronger to regular than irregular proprioceptive stimulation of the hand

Toni Mujunen*, Timo Nurmi, Harri Piitulainen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
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Proprioceptive afference can be investigated using corticokinematic coherence (CKC), which indicates coupling between limb kinematics and cortical activity. CKC has been quantified using proprioceptive stimulation (movement actuators) with fixed interstimulus interval (ISI). However, it is unclear how regularity of the stimulus sequence (jitter) affects CKC strength. Eighteen healthy volunteers (16 right-handed, 27.8 ± 5.0 yr, 7 females) participated in magnetoencephalography (MEG) session in which their right index finger was continuously moved at ∼3 Hz with Constant 333 ms ISI or with 20% Jitter (ISI 333 ± 66 ms) using a pneumaticmovement actuator. Three minutes of data per condition were collected. Finger kinematics were recorded with a three-axis accelerometer. CKC strength was defined as the peak coherence value in the Rolandic MEG gradiometer pair contralateral to the movement at 3 Hz. Both conditions resulted in significant coherence peaking in the gradiometers over the primary sensorimotor cortex. Constant stimulation yielded stronger CKC at 3Hz (0.78 ± 0.11 vs. 0.66 ± 0.13, P < 0.001) and its first harmonic (0.60 ± 0.19 vs. 0.27 ± 0.11, P < 0.001) than irregular stimulation. Similarly, the respective sustained-movement evoked field was also stronger for constant stimulation. The results emphasize the importance of temporal stability of the proprioceptive stimulation sequence when quantifying CKC strength. The weaker CKC during irregular stimulation can be explained with temporal and thus spectral scattering of the paired peripheral and cortical events beyond the mean stimulation frequency. This impairs the signal-to-noise ratio of respective MEG signal and thus CKC strength. When accurately estimating and following changes in CKC strength, we suggest using precise movement actuators with constant stimulation sequence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)550-560
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Neurophysiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Jitter
  • Kinematics
  • Movement-evoked field
  • Proprioception
  • Somatosensory


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