The School of Biological Sciences Spring 2024 Seminar Series presents Dr. Jing Xu

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The human hand possesses far more superior dexterity than our mammalian ancestors and our non-human primate cousins. Critically, individuated finger control, supported by the evolutionary newer neural circuits, allows us to break the more primitive power grip to various fine-tuned subtle finger movements and hand postures to achieve a dazzling array of manual skills, from a mundane task of tying the shoelace to the feat of playing Bach’s Partitas. How we achieve this remarkable level of dexterity and what the biological roots are is yet to be elucidated. In this talk I will present recent work from my research team in understanding the neural and behavioral complexities of finger control. Using 3-dimensional isometric fingertip forces recorded simultaneously from all five fingers, we show that finger enslavement patterns during individuated finger control after stroke present a loss of behavior complexity, which is dissociable from the intrusion of non-selective flexor bias, indicating differential neural pathways supporting the two. Lastly, I will also discuss how finger individuation may participate in multi-finger manipulations and exploratory behaviors in motor skill learning and its biological and rehabilitation implications.


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  • Created By:rbailey74
  • Created:02/15/2024
  • Modified By:rbailey74
  • Modified:02/15/2024