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Rapid interhemispheric switching during vocal production in a songbird


Wang, C Z H; Herbst, J A; Keller, G B; Hahnloser, R H R (2008). Rapid interhemispheric switching during vocal production in a songbird. PLoS Biology, 6(10):2154-2162.

Abstract

To generate complex bilateral motor patterns such as those underlying birdsong, neural activity must be highly coordinated across the two cerebral hemispheres. However, it remains largely elusive how this coordination is achieved given that interhemispheric communication between song-control areas in the avian cerebrum is restricted to projections received from bilaterally connecting areas in the mid- and hindbrain. By electrically stimulating cerebral
premotor areas in zebra finches, we find that behavioral effectiveness of stimulation rapidly switches between hemispheres. In time intervals in which stimulation in one hemisphere tends to distort songs, stimulation in the other
hemisphere is mostly ineffective, revealing an idiosyncratic form of motor dominance that bounces back and forth between hemispheres like a virtual ping-pong ball. The intervals of lateralized effectiveness are broadly distributed
and are unrelated to simple spectral and temporal song features. Such interhemispheric switching could be an important dynamical aspect of neural coordination that may have evolved from simpler pattern generator circuits.

To generate complex bilateral motor patterns such as those underlying birdsong, neural activity must be highly coordinated across the two cerebral hemispheres. However, it remains largely elusive how this coordination is achieved given that interhemispheric communication between song-control areas in the avian cerebrum is restricted to projections received from bilaterally connecting areas in the mid- and hindbrain. By electrically stimulating cerebral
premotor areas in zebra finches, we find that behavioral effectiveness of stimulation rapidly switches between hemispheres. In time intervals in which stimulation in one hemisphere tends to distort songs, stimulation in the other
hemisphere is mostly ineffective, revealing an idiosyncratic form of motor dominance that bounces back and forth between hemispheres like a virtual ping-pong ball. The intervals of lateralized effectiveness are broadly distributed
and are unrelated to simple spectral and temporal song features. Such interhemispheric switching could be an important dynamical aspect of neural coordination that may have evolved from simpler pattern generator circuits.

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34 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Neuroinformatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
Uncontrolled Keywords:motion | songbird
Language:English
Date:October 2008
Deposited On:11 Mar 2009 07:42
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:10
Publisher:Public Library of Science (PLoS)
ISSN:1544-9173
Publisher DOI:10.1371/journal.pbio.0060250
Other Identification Number:ini:18895
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-17633

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