Motor cognition: TMS studies of action generation

Simone Schütz-Bosbach, Patrick Haggard, Luciano Fadiga and Laila Craighero

in Oxford Handbook of Transcranial Stimulation

Published in print January 2008 | ISBN: 9780198568926
Published online November 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191744013 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Motor cognition: TMS studies of action generation

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  • Neuropsychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has been used to study motor configuration in three ways. TMS can be used to provide a controllable and physiologically specified input to the skeletomotor system. Second, use of TMS has been as an online probe of cortical motor excitability. Third, TMS can be used to interfere with cognitive-motor processes involved in action control. TMS allows the experimenter to selectively interfere with a specific brain process. TMS has proved a valuable tool for testing parallel models of perception–action linkage, because it can be used to measure cortical excitability. TMS has been used as both an excitability measure and a transient inactivation. TMS has allowed neuroscientists to activate or inactivate the brain's action systems artificially. This has provided key insights into normal motor function.

Keywords: transcranial magnetic stimulation; motor configuration; skeletomotor system; motor excitability; perception; excitability measure

Article.  10518 words. 

Subjects: Neuropsychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience

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