Unravelling Ipsilateral Interactions Between Left Dorsal Premotor and Primary Motor Cortex: A Proof of Concept Study

Sybren Van Hoornweder, Ruben Debeuf, Stefanie Verstraelen, Raf Meesen, Koen Cuypers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Few studies have identified the intrahemispheric functional connectivity between the ipsilateral dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) and the primary motor hand area (M1hand) due to technical limitations. In this proof-of-concept study, a novel neuronavigated dsTMS set-up was employed, combining stimulation over left PMd and left M1hand using the edge of a butterfly coil and a small cooled-coil. This arrangement was warranted because coil (over)heating and inter coil distance are limiting factors when investigating connectivity between stimulation targets in close proximity and over a longer duration. The proposed set-up was designed to deal with these limitations. Specifically, the effect of four dual-site transcranial magnetic stimulation (dsTMS) protocols on twenty-eight right-handed participants (12 males) was evaluated. These protocols differed in stimulus order, interstimulus interval and current direction induced in PMd. A structural scan with electric (E-)field modeling was obtained from seven participants prior to dsTMS, demonstrating that PMd and M1hand were effectively stimulated. Results indicate that one protocol, in which a latero-medial current was induced in PMd 2.8 ms prior to stimulation over M1hand, induced a sex-mediated effect. In males, significant inhibition of motor-evoked potentials was identified, whereas females demonstrated a facilitatory effect that did not survive correction for multiple comparisons. E-field simulations revealed that the E-field induced by the coil targeting PMd was maximal in PMd, with weaker E-field strengths extending to regions beyond PMd. Summarizing, the current dsTMS set-up enabled stimulating at an inter-target distance of 35 mm without any indications of coil-overheating.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-46
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021


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