Hand movements with a phase structure and gestures that depict action stem from a left hemispheric system of conceptualization

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungBegutachtung

Abstract

The present study addresses the previously discussed controversy on the contribution of the right and left cerebral hemispheres to the production and conceptualization of spontaneous hand movements and gestures. Although it has been shown that each hemisphere contains the ability to produce hand movements, results of left hemispherically lateralized motor functions challenge the view of a contralateral hand movement production system. To examine hemispheric specialization in hand movement and gesture production, ten right-handed participants were tachistoscopically presented pictures of everyday life actions. The participants were asked to demonstrate with their hands, but without speaking what they had seen on the drawing. Two independent blind raters evaluated the videotaped hand movements and gestures employing the Neuropsychological Gesture Coding System. The results showed that the overall frequency of right- and left-hand movements is equal independent of stimulus lateralization. When hand movements were analyzed considering their Structure, the presentation of the action stimuli to the left hemisphere resulted in more hand movements with a phase structure than the presentation to the right hemisphere. Furthermore, the presentation to the left hemisphere resulted in more right and left-hand movements with a phase structure, whereas the presentation to the right hemisphere only increased contralateral left-hand movements with a phase structure as compared to hand movements without a phase structure. Gestures that depict action were primarily displayed in response to stimuli presented in the right visual field than in the left one. The present study shows that both hemispheres possess the faculty to produce hand movements in response to action stimuli. However, the left hemisphere dominates the production of hand movements with a phase structure and gestures that depict action. We therefore conclude that hand movements with a phase structure and gestures that represent action stem from a left hemispheric system of conceptualization.

OriginalspracheEnglisch
ZeitschriftExperimental brain research
Jahrgang232
Ausgabenummer10
Seiten (von - bis)3159-73
Seitenumfang15
ISSN0014-4819
DOIs
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 01.10.2014

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