SUMMARYIn order to clarify the roles played by the primary motor cortex and the supplementary motor area in the execution of complex sequential and simple repetitive finger movements, regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured with PET using 15O-labelled water in five normal subjects. The PET data of each individual subject co-registered to his own MRI, was analysed. Compared with the resting condition, the mean rCBF was markedly increased in the contralateral sensorimotor cortex (MI-SI) and moderately increased in the contralateral cingulate gyrus and putamen in both the simple and complex motor tasks. During the complex motor task, in addition to the above, the mean rCBF was markedly increased in the supplementary motor area and the contralateral premotor area, and moderately increased in the ipsilateral M1-S1 and cerebellum. In the supplementary motor area, there was a moderate rCBF increase also during the simple task. However, comparison of the mean rCBF increase against the resting condition between the two tasks revealed a greater increase during the complex task than in the other only in the supplementary motor area and the ipsilateral M1-S1. Thus, in agreement with our previous electrophysiological findings, not only the supplementary motor area but also the M1-S1 seems to play an important role in the execution of complex sequential finger movements.
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