Towards Formal Models of Inhibitory Mechanisms Involved in Motor Imagery: A Commentary on Bach et al. (2022)

Ladislas Nalborczyk, Marieke Longcamp, Thibault Gajdos, Mathieu Servant, and F.-Xavier Alario.

2024. Psychological Research, January  —  @HAL

A vast body of research suggests that the primary motor cortex is involved during motor imagery. This raises the issue of inhibition: Given the role of the motor system in providing the multisensory content of motor imagery, how is it possible for motor imagery not to lead to motor execution? Bach et al. (2022, this issue) suggest that the motor execution threshold may be “upregulated” during motor imagery to prevent execution. Alternatively, it has been proposed that, in parallel to excitatory mechanisms, inhibitory mechanisms may be actively suppressing motor output during motor imagery. These theories are verbal in nature, with well-known limitations. Here, we describe a toy-model of the inhibitory mechanisms thought to be at play during motor imagery to start disentangling predictions from competing hypotheses.
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