3 years ago

Posterior parietal cortex estimates the relationship between object and body location during locomotion

Trevor Drew, Daniel S Marigold
We test the hypothesis that the posterior parietal cortex (PPC) contributes to the control of visually guided locomotor gait modifications by constructing an estimation of object location relative to body state, and in particular the changing gap between them. To test this hypothesis, we recorded neuronal activity from areas 5b and 7 of the PPC of cats walking on a treadmill and stepping over a moving obstacle whose speed of advance was varied (slowed or accelerated with respect to the speed of the cat). We found distinct populations of neurons in the PPC, primarily in area 5b, that signaled distance- or time-to-contact with the obstacle, regardless of which limb was the first to step over the obstacle. We propose that these cells are involved in a sensorimotor transformation whereby information on the location of an obstacle with respect to the body is used to initiate the gait modification.

Publisher URL: https://elifesciences.org/articles/28143

DOI: 10.7554/eLife.28143

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