Readiness potentials driven by non-motoric processes.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

An increase in brain activity known as the "readiness potential" (RP) can be seen over central scalp locations in the seconds leading up to a volitionally timed movement. This activity precedes awareness of the ensuing movement by as much as two seconds and has been hypothesized to reflect preconscious planning and/or preparation of the movement. Using a novel experimental design, we teased apart the relative contribution of motor-related and non-motor-related processes to the RP. The results of our experiment reveal that robust RPs occured in the absence of movement and that motor-related processes did not significantly modulate the RP. This suggests that the RP measured here is unlikely to reflect preconscious motor planning or preparation of an ensuing movement, and instead may reflect decision-related or anticipatory processes that are non-motoric in nature.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Alexander, P; Schlegel, A; Sinnott-Armstrong, W; Roskies, AL; Wheatley, T; Tse, PU

Published Date

  • January 2016

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 39 /

Start / End Page

  • 38 - 47

PubMed ID

  • 26678844

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1090-2376

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1053-8100

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.concog.2015.11.011


  • eng