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In Cortex; a journal devoted to the study of the nervous system and behavior

Neurological patients with apraxia of pantomime provide us with a unique opportunity to study the neural correlates of higher-order motor function. Previous studies using lesion-behaviour mapping methods led to inconsistent anatomical results, reporting various lesion locations to induce this symptom. We hypothesised that the inconsistencies might arise from limitations of mass-univariate lesion-behaviour mapping approaches if our ability to pantomime the use of objects is organised in a brain network. Thus, we investigated apraxia of pantomime by using multivariate lesion behaviour mapping based both on support vector regression and sparse canonical correlations in a sample of 130 left-hemisphere stroke patients. Both multivariate methods identified multiple areas to underlie high-order motor control, including inferior parietal lobule, precentral gyrus, posterior parts of middle temporal cortex, and insula. Further, long association fibres were affected, such as the superior longitudinal fascicle, inferior occipito-frontal fascicle, uncinated fascicle, and superior occipito-frontal fascicle. The findings underline the benefits of multivariate lesion-behaviour mapping in brain networks and provide new insights into the brain networks underlying higher-order motor control.

Sperber Christoph, Wiesen Daniel, Goldenberg Georg, Karnath Hans-Otto


Gesture, Multivariate, Stroke, Support vector regression, Voxel-based lesion symptom mapping