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Comment la gravité est intégrée lors de la planification motrice : approches comportementale et par imagerie cérébrale

Abstract : Gravity is immutable, ubiquitous and affects the dynamic of our daily movements. The gravitational attraction (9.81 m / s2) which varies less than 1% of the earth's surface, is an actress of the evolution of all living species. Thanks to an efficient sensorimotor system, the dynamical consequences of the effects of gravity on our movements are stored as internal representations. To circumvent the time delays of the afferent signals coming from the sensorimotor system (too long to plan quick movements), the Central Nervous System (CNS) acts in a proactive fashion by using suitable internal models developed during our past experiences. These models are mainly used during the motor planning to provide a motor command to initiate the action. Prior knowledge of our biomechanical system and our environment therefore characterizes the diversity of internal models of each individual. However, before movement’s execution, sensory feedback can also be used to develop an optimal strategy of the motor task. The role of this initial information coming from the sensory feedback to anticipate the effects of gravity remains to deepen. During this thesis, we have highlighted the critical role of the initial information to plan a movement. Once available (~ 100 ms after the beginning of the movement), the sensory feedback is then integrated into internal models to control the motor task and if it is necessary, to adjust the strategy during movement execution. The initial information is especially useful when we have to deal with a new dynamical context. Indeed, the CNS will much more rely on this information coming from the sensorimotor system, given that no internal model related to the unusual context has still been developed. During a learning phase new internal models will be established. The parameters which allow learning are various and depend on the sensorimotor system of each individual. We have shown that when all the sensory systems are affected by the effects of a new gravito-inertial environment, learning was facilitated. This result contrasts with the lack of adaptation - or interference - sometimes observed during learning tasks much easier. All these mechanisms observed at a behavioral stage are processed in the cerebral cortex, and the integration and encoding of the effects of gravity are processed in specific brain areas. In particular, concerning external objects, the vestibular network is engaged to predict the effects of gravity. Thus, we wanted to know if the same functional network was responsible of the processing of the dynamical constraints of gravity during movement’s execution. We have shown that the insular cortex, which is the core region of the visual vestibular system, plays an important role. Then, by using mental imagery paradigm that does not induce movement, we also observed differences in the circuitry within the insula when gravity-relevant signals related to movement’s execution are transmitted or not to the brain.
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https://tel.archives-ouvertes.fr/tel-01709263
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Célia Rousseau. Comment la gravité est intégrée lors de la planification motrice : approches comportementale et par imagerie cérébrale. Neurosciences [q-bio.NC]. Université de Bourgogne, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016DIJOS055⟩. ⟨tel-01709263⟩

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