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Novel motor learning

Min Liu, Jie Ran, Jun Zhou
Kinesins are widely expressed, microtubule-dependent motors that play vital roles in microtubule-associated cellular activities, such as cell division and intracellular transport. Eg5, also known as kinesin-5 or kinesin spindle protein, is a member of the kinesin family that contributes to the formation and maintenance of the bipolar mitotic spindle during cell division. Small-molecule compounds that inhibit Eg5 activity have been shown to impair spindle assembly, block mitotic progression, and possess anti-cancer activity...
June 21, 2018: Thoracic Cancer
Louis-Solal Giboin, Markus Gruber, Andreas Kramer
OBJECTIVES: We wanted to verify if the "learning to learn" effect observed in the learning of visuomotor tasks is also present when learning a balance task, i.e., whether the learning rate of a balance task is improved by prior practice of similar balance tasks. DESIGN: Single centre, parallel group, controlled training study. METHODS: 32 young healthy participants were divided into a control and a training group. The training group's practice consisted of 90 trials of three balance tasks...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport
Alli Gokeler, Romain Seil, Gino Kerkhoffs, Evert Verhagen
Efficacy studies have demonstrated decreased anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury rates for athletes participating in injury prevention programs. Typically, ACL injury prevention programs entail a combination of plyometrics, strength training, agility and balance exercises. Unfortunately, improvements of movement patterns are not sustained over time. The reason may be related to the type of instructions given during training. Encouraging athletes to consciously control knee movements during exercises may not be optimal for the acquisition of complex motor skills as needed in complex sports environments...
June 18, 2018: Journal of Experimental Orthopaedics
Anna M Borghi, Laura Barca, Ferdinand Binkofski, Luca Tummolini
The problem of representation of abstract concepts, such as 'freedom' and 'justice', has become particularly crucial in recent years, owing to the increased success of embodied and grounded views of cognition. We will present a novel view on abstract concepts and abstract words. Since abstract concepts do not have single objects as referents, children and adults might rely more on input from others to learn them; we, therefore, suggest that linguistic and social experience play an important role for abstract concepts...
August 5, 2018: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Gro Killi Haugstad, Unni Kirste, Siv Leganger, Elin Haakonsen, Tor S Haugstad
Historic background and development of our somatocognitive approach Mensendieck physiotherapy of the Oslo School is a tradition of physiotherapy founded by the American physician Bess Mensendieck, a contemporary and fellow student of Sigmund Freud at the Paris School of Neurology. It builds on the principles of functional anatomy and the theories of motor learning. We have further developed the theory and practice from this physiotherapy tradition, challenged by the enormous load of patients with longstanding, incapacitating pain on western health care systems, by seeking to incorporate inspirational ideas from body oriented dynamic psychotherapy and cognitive psychotherapy...
December 29, 2017: Scandinavian Journal of Pain
Florian Sense, Hedderik van Rijn
The serial reaction time task is widely used to study learning and memory. The task is traditionally administered by showing target positions on a computer screen and collecting responses using a button box or keyboard. By comparing response times to random or sequenced items or by using different transition probabilities, various forms of learning can be studied. However, this traditional laboratory setting limits the number of possible experimental manipulations. Here, we present a virtual reality version of the serial reaction time task and show that learning effects emerge as expected despite the novel way in which responses are collected...
2018: PloS One
Matthew Dyson, Jessica Barnes, Kianoush Nazarpour
The objective of this study was to compare the use of muscles appropriate for partial-hand prostheses with those typically used for complete hand devices and to determine whether differences in their underlying neural substrates translate to different levels of myoelectric control.
 Approach: We developed a novel abstract myoelectric decoder based on motor learning. Three muscle pairs, namely, an intrinsic and independent, an intrinsic and synergist and finally, an extrinsic and antagonist, were tested during abstract myoelectric control...
June 12, 2018: Journal of Neural Engineering
Margaret A Sheridan, Katie A McLaughlin, Warren Winter, Nathan Fox, Charles Zeanah, Charles A Nelson
Exposure to psychosocial deprivation is associated with elevations in numerous forms of impairment throughout the life-course. Disruptions in associative learning may be a key mechanism through which adversity, particularly psychosocial deprivation, increases risk for impairment. Existing data consistent with this claim come entirely from correlational studies. Here, we present the first experimental evidence relating psychosocial deprivation and disruptions in multiple forms of associative learning. Using data from the Bucharest Early Intervention Project, we demonstrate that randomized placement into a family caregiving environment during the infant/toddler period as compared to prolonged institutional care normalizes two forms of associative learning in early adolescence: reward responsivity and implicit motor learning...
June 7, 2018: Nature Communications
Jeppe H Rasmussen, Christian T Herbst, Coen P H Elemans
The complex and elaborate vocalizations uttered by many of the 10,000 extant bird species are considered a major driver in their evolutionary success, warranting study of the underlying mechanisms of vocal production. Additionally, birdsong has developed into a highly productive model system for vocal imitation learning and motor control, where, in contrast to humans, we have experimental access to the entire neuromechanical control loop. In human voice production, complex laryngeal geometry, vocal fold tissue properties, airflow and laryngeal musculature all interact to ultimately control vocal fold kinematics...
June 7, 2018: Journal of Experimental Biology
Whitney E Muhlestein, Dallin S Akagi, Justiss A Kallos, Peter J Morone, Kyle D Weaver, Reid C Thompson, Lola B Chambless
Objective  Machine learning (ML) algorithms are powerful tools for predicting patient outcomes. This study pilots a novel approach to algorithm selection and model creation using prediction of discharge disposition following meningioma resection as a proof of concept. Materials and Methods  A diversity of ML algorithms were trained on a single-institution database of meningioma patients to predict discharge disposition. Algorithms were ranked by predictive power and top performers were combined to create an ensemble model...
April 2018: Journal of Neurological Surgery. Part B, Skull Base
Magdalena Nowak, Catharina Zich, Charlotte J Stagg
Purpose of Review: An increase in oscillatory activity in the γ -frequency band (approximately 50-100 Hz) has long been noted during human movement. However, its functional role has been difficult to elucidate. The advent of novel techniques, particularly transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS), has dramatically increased our ability to study γ oscillations. Here, we review our current understanding of the role of γ oscillations in the human motor cortex, with reference to γ activity outside the motor system, and evidence from animal models...
2018: Current Behavioral Neuroscience Reports
Michael Dimitriou
It is generally believed that task-dependent control of body configuration ("posture") is achieved by adjusting voluntary motor activity and transcortical "long-latency" reflexes. Spinal monosynaptic circuits are thought not to be engaged in such task-level control. Similarly, being in a state of motor learning has been strongly associated only with an upregulation of feedback responses at transcortical latencies and beyond. In two separate experiments, the current study examined the task-dependent modulation of stretch reflexes by perturbing the hand of human subjects while they were waiting for a "Go" signal to move at the different stages of a classic kinematic learning task (visuomotor rotation)...
June 2018: Behavioral Neuroscience
Anna Adhikari, Nycole A Copping, Beth Onaga, Michael C Pride, Rochelle L Coulson, Mu Yang, Dag H Yasui, Janine M LaSalle, Jill L Silverman
Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is an imprinted neurodevelopmental disease caused by a loss of paternal genes on chromosome 15q11-q13. It is characterized by cognitive impairments, developmental delay, sleep abnormalities, and hyperphagia often leading to obesity. Clinical research has shown that a lack of expression of SNORD116, a paternally expressed imprinted gene cluster that encodes multiple copies of a small nucleolar RNA (snoRNA) in both humans and mice, is most likely responsible for many PWS symptoms seen in humans...
May 22, 2018: Neurobiology of Learning and Memory
Wing-Chee So, Miranda Kit-Yi Wong, Wan-Yi Lam, Chun-Ho Cheng, Jia-Hao Yang, Ying Huang, Phoebe Ng, Wai-Leung Wong, Chiu-Lok Ho, Kit-Ling Yeung, Cheuk-Chi Lee
Background: Past studies have shown that robot-based intervention was effective in improving gestural use in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The present study examined whether children with ASD could catch up to the level of gestural production found in age-matched children with typical development and whether they showed an increase in verbal imitation after the completion of robot-based training. We also explored the cognitive and motor skills associated with gestural learning...
2018: Molecular Autism
Michael C Edler, Asma B Salek, Darryl S Watkins, Harjot Kaur, Cameron W Morris, Bryan K Yamamoto, Anthony J Baucum
Protein phosphorylation is a key mediator of signal transduction, allowing for dynamic regulation of substrate activity. Whereas protein kinases obtain substrate specificity by targeting specific amino acid sequences, serine/threonine phosphatase catalytic subunits are much more promiscuous in their ability to dephosphorylate substrates. To obtain substrate specificity, serine/threonine phosphatases utilize targeting proteins to regulate phosphatase subcellular localization and catalytic activity. Spinophilin and its homolog neurabin are two of the most abundant dendritic spine-localized protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) targeting proteins...
May 22, 2018: ACS Chemical Neuroscience
Hongying Zhu, Ning Wang, Lei Yao, Qi Chen, Ran Zhang, Junchao Qian, Yiwen Hou, Weiwei Guo, Sijia Fan, Siling Liu, Qiaoyun Zhao, Feng Du, Xin Zuo, Yujun Guo, Yan Xu, Jiali Li, Tian Xue, Kai Zhong, Xiaoyuan Song, Guangming Huang, Wei Xiong
Sunlight exposure is known to affect mood, learning, and cognition. However, the molecular and cellular mechanisms remain elusive. Here, we show that moderate UV exposure elevated blood urocanic acid (UCA), which then crossed the blood-brain barrier. Single-cell mass spectrometry and isotopic labeling revealed a novel intra-neuronal metabolic pathway converting UCA to glutamate (GLU) after UV exposure. This UV-triggered GLU synthesis promoted its packaging into synaptic vesicles and its release at glutamatergic terminals in the motor cortex and hippocampus...
May 7, 2018: Cell
Danny Spampinato, Pablo Celnik
Acquiring complex motor skills involves learning a number of distinct motor components. Two fundamental elements that constitute a skill are the internal representation (i.e., the calibration of a sensorimotor map) and the sequence of movements needed to execute the task. Learning each of these likely rely on different neural substrates such as the cerebellum and primary motor cortex (M1), and physiological mechanisms. However, the specific neurophysiological processes underlying the acquisition of these components remains poorly understood...
March 27, 2018: Cortex; a Journal Devoted to the Study of the Nervous System and Behavior
Wei Shen, Patti Krautscheid, Audrey M Rutz, Pinar Bayrak-Toydemir, Sarah L Dugan
De novo variants of ASH1L, which encodes a histone methyltransferase, have been reported in a few patients with intellectual disability and autistic features. Here, we identified a novel de novo frame-shift variant, c.2422_2423delAAinsT which predicts p.(Lys808TyrfsTer40), in ASH1L in a patient with multiple congenital anomalies (MCA), fine motor developmental delay, learning difficulties, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, sleep apnea, and scoliosis. This frame-shift variant is expected to result in loss-of-function...
May 10, 2018: European Journal of Medical Genetics
Peter Bede, Giorgia Querin, Pierre-François Pradat
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Neuroimaging in motor neuron disease (MND) has traditionally been seen as an academic tool with limited direct relevance to individualized patient care. This has changed radically in recent years as computational imaging has emerged as a viable clinical tool with true biomarker potential. This transition is not only fuelled by technological advances but also by important conceptual developments. RECENT FINDINGS: The natural history of MND is now evaluated by presymptomatic, postmortem and multi-timepoint longitudinal imaging studies...
May 9, 2018: Current Opinion in Neurology
Jie Wang, Zuren Feng, Na Lu, Jing Luo
Feature selection plays an important role in the field of EEG signals based motor imagery pattern classification. It is a process that aims to select an optimal feature subset from the original set. Two significant advantages involved are: lowering the computational burden so as to speed up the learning procedure and removing redundant and irrelevant features so as to improve the classification performance. Therefore, feature selection is widely employed in the classification of EEG signals in practical brain-computer interface systems...
May 3, 2018: Computers in Biology and Medicine
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