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Article Dans Une Revue Frontiers in Physiology Année : 2017

Coherent Multimodal Sensory Information Allows Switching between Gravitoinertial Contexts

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Whether the central nervous system is capable to switch between contexts critically depends on experimental details. Motor control studies regularly adopt robotic devices to perturb the dynamics of a certain task. Other approaches investigate motor control by altering the gravitoinertial context itself as in parabolic flights and human centrifuges. In contrast to conventional robotic experiments, where only the hand is perturbed, these gravitoinertial or immersive settings coherently plunge participants into new environments. However, radically different they are, perfect adaptation of motor responses are commonly reported. In object manipulation tasks, this translates into a good matching of the grasping force or grip force to the destabilizing load force. One possible bias in these protocols is the predictability of the forthcoming dynamics. Here we test whether the successful switching and adaptation processes observed in immersive environments are a consequence of the fact that participants can predict the perturbation schedule. We used a short arm human centrifuge to decouple the effects of space and time on the dynamics of an object manipulation task by adding an unnatural explicit position-dependent force. We created different dynamical contexts by asking 20 participants to move the object at three different paces. These contextual sessions were interleaved such that we could simulate concurrent learning. We assessed adaptation by measuring how grip force was adjusted to this unnatural load force. We found that the motor system can switch between new unusual dynamical contexts, as reported by surprisingly well-adjusted grip forces, and that this capacity is not a mere consequence of the ability to predict the time course of the upcoming dynamics. We posit that a coherent flow of multimodal sensory information born in a homogeneous milieu allows switching between dynamical contexts.

Dates et versions

hal-01565993 , version 1 (20-07-2017)



Marie Barbiero, Célia Rousseau, Charalambos Papaxanthis, Olivier White. Coherent Multimodal Sensory Information Allows Switching between Gravitoinertial Contexts. Frontiers in Physiology, 2017, 8, ⟨10.3389/fphys.2017.00290⟩. ⟨hal-01565993⟩
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