Journal Article

Somatotopic Organization of Human Secondary Somatosensory Cortex

J. Ruben, J. Schwiemann, M. Deuchert, R. Meyer, T. Krause, G. Curio, K. Villringer, R. Kurth and A. Villringer

in Cerebral Cortex

Volume 11, issue 5, pages 463-473
Published in print May 2001 | ISSN: 1047-3211
Published online May 2001 | e-ISSN: 1460-2199 | DOI:
Somatotopic Organization of Human Secondary Somatosensory Cortex

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This fMRI study investigated the human somatosensory system, especially the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII), with respect to its potential somatotopic organization. Eight subjects received electrical stimulation on their right second finger, fifth finger and hallux. Within SII, the typical finding for both fingers was a representation site within the contralateral parietal operculum roughly halfway between the lip of the lateral sulcus and its fundus, whereas the representation site of the hallux was found more medially to this position at the fundus of the lateral sulcus, near the posterior pole of the insula. Somatotopy in SII seems to be less fine-grained than in primary somatosensory cortex (SI), as, in contrast to SI, no separate representations of the two fingers in SII were observed. A similar somatotopic representation pattern between fingers and the hallux was also observed within ipsilateral SII, indicating somatotopy of contra- as well as ipsilateral SII using unilateral stimulation. Further areas exhibiting activation were found in the superior and inferior parietal lobule, in the supplementary and cingulate motor area, and in the insula.

Journal Article.  8534 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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