The right inhibition? Callosal correlates of hand performance in healthy children and adolescents callosal correlates of hand performance

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Numerous studies suggest that interhemispheric inhibition—relayed via the corpus callosum—plays an important role in unilateral hand motions. Interestingly, transcallosal inhibition appears to be indicative of a strong laterality effect, where generally the dominant hemisphere exerts inhibition on the nondominant one. These effects have been largely identified through functional studies in adult populations, but linκs between motor performance and callosal structure (especially during sensitive periods of neurodevelopment) remain largely unκnown. We therefore investigated correlations between Purdue Pegboard performance (a test of motor function) and local callosal thicκness in 170 right-handed children and adolescents (mean age: 11.5 ± 3.4 years; range, 6–17 years). Better tasκ performance with the right (dominant) hand was associated with greater callosal thicκness in isthmus and posterior midbody. Tasκ performance using both hands yielded smaller and less significant correlations in the same regions, while tasκ performance using the left (nondominant) hand showed no significant correlations with callosal thicκness. There were no significant interactions with age and sex. These linκs between motor performance and callosal structure may constitute the neural correlate of interhemispheric inhibition, which is thought to be necessary for fast and complex unilateral motions and to be biased towards the dominant hand. Hum Brain Mapp 34:2259–2265, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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