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    Somatosensory effects of action inhibition: a study with the stop-signal paradigm

    Walsh, Eamonn and Haggard, P. (2010) Somatosensory effects of action inhibition: a study with the stop-signal paradigm. Experimental Brain Research 204 (3), pp. 465-473. ISSN 0014-4819.

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    When a weak shock is delivered to the finger immediately before a voluntary movement, or during a delay interval where subjects are prepared to make the movement, shock detection rates worsen progressively as the movement approaches. Further, we previously showed that shock detection improves again if a NoGo signal produces inhibition of a prepared response. Here, we used a somatosensory version of the stop-signal paradigm to investigate inhibitory processing during the ‘horserace’ period when motor excitation and inhibition processes may be simultaneously active. When subjects made a rapid keypress response to a go-signal, shock detection deteriorated in a time-dependent manner, replicating sensory suppression. However, when go-signals were followed by adaptively delayed stop-signals so that subjects could not inhibit the prepared movement, and made errors of commission, we found a paradoxical brief increase in shock detection performance just after the stop-signal, as if in a NoGo trial. During this brief window, the somatosensory system showed a pattern consistent with motor inhibition, even though the motor system itself was too far advanced in movement execution for action to be inhibited. Most models of stop-signal processing propose a two-horse race between excitation and inhibition, with a winner-takes-all solution. We show that there may be distinct motor and somatosensory races. Moreover, inhibitory processes may lead in the somatosensory race, at least briefly, even when excitatory processes win the motor race.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): action reprogramming, motor control, sensory suppression, voluntary movement
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2016 13:13
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:20


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